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It's time for a new HF net - Part 2
Last week we said : We need at least consider moving our HF net to 160, 75, or 40 meters, and those bands are likely to be most useful in the evening. Because 160 requires a very long antenna, it is impractical for many users. 40 can get crowded, but requires the shortest antenna of the three. Of course we can consider reviving our 17 meter "non-net roundtable", which was originally started by Alan, K2WS, but the sun will have to spit out a few more spots for that band to get where it needs to be. So what do you think? 160? 75? 40? Or something else? And what about the time and day?
Interestingly enough, the 75 meter band seems to be favored so far. More than one respondent has suggested that we would have the best chance of success in the Extra Class segment of the band. The reason cited was that the General segment is crowded in the evening when the band is open to longer distance communications and thus most useful for our purposes.
I think we can agree that the 160 meter band is "out" because of the antenna requirements. 40 is a good alternative because of its propagation characteristics, but the phone portion of the band is less than half that available on 75 meters and there is no doubt that it will be difficult to find some open real estate for an evening net. Besides, we already have the CW net on 7.112 MHz.
So what do you think? A 75 meter net in the evening to be in the Extra portion of the band? Remember, only participants with Extra Class licenses would be able to transmit, but anyone could listen. We could initiate a "check in by email", or some similar system, which I have heard on other nets, to accommodate those without transmit privileges. Another idea would be to have the Handiham Radio Club as the net sponsor. We do need regular HRC activities, aside from a single meeting at Radio Camp during the year.
Weigh in! I hope to hear from you about these suggestions soon. Please drop me an email, and I'll share your thoughts with our readers and listeners.
Patrick Tice, WA0TDA
QST Reviews Wouxun KG-UVD2 & KG-UVD1P Talking Handheld Radios
The Wouxun KG-UVD1 talking HT created quite a stir at Hamvention in May, both for its low price and for its built-in speech access for the blind. As I stated in a previous story, "Handiham volunteers Larry Huggins, KA0LSG, and Ken Silberman, KB3LLA, both found the new Wouxun 2m/70cm KG-UVD1P HT at Dayton, and Larry actually had his radio along to demonstrate to us at Handiham Radio Camp."
We have had many questions about this radio, but details on its overall quality and functionality were mostly anecdotal. That has changed with a QST review of the latest versions of the KG-UVD2 & KG-UVD1P talking handheld radios by Bob Allison, WB1GCM, ARRL Test Engineer. Bob's article appears in the November 2010 QST, which will be available to blind Handiham members in the upcoming Friday audio updates in the Members Only section of the Handiham website. QST is also produced in audio through the Library of Congress National Library Service and will be available for the new NLS digital players, available to those who qualify for services. The NLS version of QST is the complete magazine without advertising, but it takes some time to produce and is typically around a month later than the print mailing or Handiham digest version.