Amateur Radio News and Events

Get your daily fix of amateur radio news.

Then get up to date on news from our surrounding area.


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  • DeKalb County Amateur Radio Club Tailgate 2021

    DCARC logo

    Good News!:

    What:  DeKalb County Amateur Radio Club Tailgate.
    When:  Saturday, March 27, 2021 8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
    Where:  VFW Fair Grounds 151 18th Street NE Fort Payne, Al 35967.
    Admission:  $5.00 per person. Includes 1 Ticket.
    Additional Prize tickets will be available for the following:
    $1.00 each/(6)$5.00/(13)$10.00/(20)$15.00/(30)$20.00
    1. Yaesu FTM-3200DR C4FM Digital/Analog Mobile Tranciever
    2. Dual Band Base Antenna 2M/440
    3. Baofeng UV-5R 8W Handheld 2M/440
    4. PowerPole 6 pos. Distribution block 45 A
    5. 30 A PowerPole 20 pair kit
    6. Mag base flexible LED light
    7. ARRL Gift Certificates
    Testing:  Testing will be conducted for a fee of $10.00.
    Please bring photo ID.
    Testing starts at 10:00 a.m.
    For Any Questions or Concerns please Call JR Hamilton (W4YPX) at 256-899-2541.
    Talk In on 147.27 + Offset 100 Hz Tone.
  • New Emergency Procedures

    Storm animation
    Be sure to read the new emergency procedures documents on our DCARC Nets page.
    There you will find new documents addressing emergency deployment preparedness, emergency repeater information, proper weather reporting procedures and tips for adhering to emergency net procedures.
  • Maintain Your Membership

    For those unable to attend the monthly meetings you may send your annual membership dues to Jimmy Killian at 170 Airport Road West Fort Payne AL 35968.     Annual dues are $12.00 for individuals and $20.00 for families.   For details please see our bylaws at DCARC bylaws.
  • Jackson County ARC Events

    Please join the Jackson County ARC members for their regular events.  All are welcome.
    What:  Social Net.
    When:  Every Tuesday night at 7:00pm
    Where:  146.90 repeater.

    What:  ARES Training Net.
    When:  Every Thursday night at 7:30pm
    Where:  146.90 repeater.

    What:  Club meeting.
    When:  Second Saturday of each month at 9:30am
    Where:  Western Sizzlin in Scottsboro Alabama.

    What:  Ares meeting.
    When:  Fourth Thursday of each month at 6:00pm
    Where:  EMA Emergency Operation Center in the Jackson County Courthouse.

    Who:  For further info please contact Richard.
    Emergency Coordinator.
    Jackson County ARES/RACES.
    Jackson County Amateur Radio
    Phone: 256-527-9331.
    Email Richard at email


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  • New FCC License Fees

    For those seeking new or upgraded licenses please be advised that the FCC will soon increase the cost of obtaining an amateur radio license.     While the FCC has not historically charged a fee for amateur licences it will soon be imposing a $35 administrative fee for these licenses.     The effective date remains uncertain, but I anticipate the new fees to be collected beginning mid July.     There has been widespread rumor that the fees will become effective April 19.   This rumor would appear to be the result of a cursory reading of the FCC Schedule of Application Fees of the Commission's Rules which lists as an effective date April 19, 2021.     However, the collection of application fees for the amateur radio service and certain other services will NOT begin on April 19, 2021.     The effective date for new amateur radio fees remains indefinite.     A closer reading of the FCC published Notice states that the fees will not take effect until:
    a)  The requisite notice has been provided to Congress; and
    b)  The FCC’s information technology systems and internal procedures have been updated; and
    c)  The Commission publishes future notice(s) in the Federal Register announcing the effective date of such rules.

        Please let me know if you need any help with study resources or other test preparation.
  • Chattooga/Walker ARC Repeater

    The Chattooga Walker Amateur Radio Club in Summerville has a new two meter repeater in operation.

    It's a Kenwood TKR-740 and along with a new duplexer it provides greatly improved receive sensitivity and transmit coverage area.

    We are on 147.225MHz with a plus offset and a 100 Hz input tone.

    All hams are invited and encouraged to use the new system and check in to our club net on Mondays at 6:30PM central time.

    For further information contact:  CARC President: Jim Warnock, KJ4WSB Jim's email at

    Also, visit their website at Chattooga Walker ARC
  • DX in Challenging Times

    When your DX signal doesn't bounce as well as last month's rent check then give these methods a try.

  • Propagation Reports

    No sunspots
  • The sun is sleeping. We are at a solar minimum.   Our friends at Spaceweather.comreported on September 26 there were no sunspots for over 3 weeks, or more precisely 24 consecutive days.     She has nearly gone flatlined.    Last Monday marked the summer autumnal equinox, and during the northern summer more than 89% of the days were sunspot free.     For this year the spotless days percentage is 72%, matching the last solar minimum of 2008 and 2009.

    Passing the equinox is historically a good time for HF propagation, even with low solar activity for both spring in the Southern Hemisphere and fall in the northern.   However, current conditions are poor for all bands except 80/40 meters which are fair in the daytime and good at night.     30 meters through 10 meters are all poor.     Six meters and above is currently closed.     Over the past week (September 19-25) average daily solar flux shifted marginally from 68.1 to 67.3, while average daily planetary A index reflected quiet geomagnetic indices changing from 8.3 to 5.4 and mid-latitude indices went from 8 to 4.6.
    Predicted solar flux is 67 on September 27 to October 4, and 68 on October 5 through November 10.
    Predicted planetary A index is 28, 45, and 20 on September 27-29, 12 on September 30 and October 1, 8 on October 2-3, 5 on October 4-5, 12 on October 6, 5 on October 7-9, then 8, 5, 8, 10, 8 and 8 on October 10-15, then 5 on October 16-19, then 12 and 8 on October 20-21, 5 on October 22-24, then 25, 18, 10, 5 and 8 on October 25-29, then 5 on October 30 through November 1, 10 on November 2, 5 on November 3-5, then 8, 5, 8, 10 and 8 on November 6-10. The planetary A index forecast of 28, 45 and 20 on September 27-29 is due to solar wind spewing from a large coronal hole. This is the same hole that gave us the planetary A index of 38 and 45 on August 31 and September 1. Look for it again on October 25-26 after yet another trip around the Sun.

    Spaceweather.comreported in an email on September 26:   GEOMAGNETIC STORM WARNING: A large hole in the Sun's atmosphere is facing Earth and spewing a stream of solar wind in our direction. NOAA forecasters say there is a chance of moderately-strong G2-class geomagnetic storms when the gaseous material arrives on Sept. 28th. The last such storm in early September produced auroras visible in many northern-tier US states. Visit today's edition of for more information and forecasts.

    Geomagnetic activity forecast for the period September 27 until October 22, 2019 from F.K. Janda, OK1HH is as follows:
    • Quiet on: October 8, 16-17
    • Quiet to unsettled on: October 3-4, 7, 9, 20
    • Quiet to active on: October 1-2, 6, 10-11, 15, 18-19, 22
    • Unsettled to active on: September 30, October (5, 12-14,) 21
    • Active to disturbed: September 27-28, (29)
    Solar wind is expected to increase on: September 27-30, October 1 (-4, 7-9,) 11 (-14,) 21-23
  • ARRL Renews Request for FCC to Replace Symbol Rate with Bandwidth Limit
     ARRL renewed its request that the FCC delete symbol-rate limits for data transmissions in the Amateur Service rules. As it did in its initial filing, ARRL asked the FCC to couple the removal of the symbol rate limits with the adoption of a 2.8 kHz bandwidth limit. In response to a 2013 ARRL Petition for Rulemaking (RM-11708), the FCC proposed deleting the symbol-rate limits but declined to replace them with the 2.8 kHz bandwidth that ARRL wanted.
    If I, Charles Gray KM4SDB, may interject a personal opinion here:  When visiting ARRL headquarters my first question was why the ARRL had not pursued this issue with greater vigor.  It was reported to me at that time that it wasn't a priority with the membership.  As this rule change is critical to the future of amateur radio digital modes I hope that all amateurs will express their support for it.


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  • HAM Test Study Resources
  • provides excellent resources for study and exams for all amateur licenses.     Flash cards for study are well presented and up to date, practice exams provide extensive review of missed questions. provides similar resources.
    QRZ is a popular source of help, although I have not personally studied there. is a paid service with excellent reviews on

    There are many other excellent online study and test sites that can aid you in your quest for a Ham license.     For those that may not have Internet connectivity during study time the pool questions for each exam can be downloaded and reviewed offline.
    Technician class exam pool.
    General class exam pool.
    Extra class exam pool.

    Keep in mind that DCARC members are here to help you in your quest.     Please let us know if you have any questions about the wonderful world of Ham radio.