Meeting Topic Changed For Feb 5th’s Meeting


Due to a sudden work schedule change, John Kalotai will not be able to be our guest speaker this Friday. However the meeting is still taking place.

Frandy Johnson (N1FJ) and Jim Mullen (KK1W) will be doing a presentation on their recent National Parks on the Air (NPOTA) adventures. We will also be discussing some possible future club events. This will be an excellent way to discuss our club.

We apologize about the short notice but we wanted to make sure we had a speaker lined up. A Big thanks to Frandy and Jim for helping us out. It should be exciting.

Jeffrey Bail (NT1K)

HCRA BOD meeting notes for January 20th, 2016

HCRA BOD meeting notes for 20-Jan-2016

President: NT1K
Vice President: N1FTP
Treasurer: NV1Q
Membership: K1VOI
Program Dir: W1AST
ZB Editor: WA1MOW
Tech Dir: K1YO

At-Large: W1MOR
Secretary: WM1B

President Report:

– Jim Mullen has volunteered to help out with updating our Website.
– A Web Forum has been created at “”. The site will be
directed and administered by the BOD. It will be a members only site and
integrated with our web site.

VP Report:

– 90 tickets for the TS590SG have been sold to date. The minimum goal is 150
tickets sold. Many tickets will be sold at the MTARA flea market. We should reach
our goal plus some.

Treasurer Report:

– There was quite a bit of discussion on how to divvy up the funds from the Xmas
party. From members to non-members to MTARA members and non-member
spouses as well as member spouses. There may be some double-dipping. This
needs to be revisited.

Financial Statement:

Beginning balance: $6771.95
Dep/Wdr: $1038.68
Ending Balance: $7810.63

Membership Report:

– There are 89 members with 80 paid and 9 family members. Question was
raised, why does it take so long for some individuals to renew? Could there be
some sort of incentive added to renewing? One suggestion was to put all the paid
members in Zero Beat. If your name is not there, you didn’t pay. This also answers
the question “Did I already pay my dues?”. Also discussed was greeting new
members and asking them what their interests are at the monthly meetings.

Program Dir Report:

Here is a tentative list from W1AST

– February 6, 2016: Jon Koltai, Hamsource – Power poles & really cool shack gadgets
– March 2016:  First Robotics Competition: Gary, WA1MOW
– April 2016: Mini Presentation: Jeff, AB1WT: Portable IRLP & Echolink Node PLUS
Show and Tell
– May 2016: Jon Perelstein, WB2RYV –  How to Report Weather & How to Properly
Read Your Weather App
– June: Field Day planning, Jeff, NT1K


– September 9, 2016: Tony Brock-Fisher, K1KP – Solar Power and RFI, what you
need to know
– October 7, 2016: Dennis Markel, N1IMW : The history of WCC and Chatham
Marconi Radio.
– Nov 2016: tbd
– Dec 2016: annual HCRA Holiday Party

Zero Beat Editor:

– Submit your articles by 29th of January. Submit anything, please. Someday there
will be blank pages in Zero Beat…

Technical Director Report:

– 2 requests on interference. Services rendered, none.


Old Business

Welcome Package:

A draft of the Welcome Package was handed out. The BOD must read and submit
changes to Jeff or Larry within the next 2 weeks. These Packages will be handed
out to all who pass their exams.A motion was made for HCRA to pay for the printing of the Welcome Package. The front page should be printed in color with printing on both sides. Staples is the preferred vendor for printing.

In Favor – 7
Apposed – 0

A motion was made for HCRA to pay for the printing of the HCRA tri-fold as well.
In Favor -7
Apposed – 0

Stub J-Pole Project:

The material has been purchased and cut. 80% of the project is complete.

License class exams:

Classes will be held on April 27,28, and 30. With Saturday being a full day.
Bob, K1YO has volunteered to help with the Extra Class.

DXLabs Class:

Setup will be on Feb 6th starting at 9am. Looks like 6-7 people will be in the class.
The Club will supply Coffee and donuts.


New Business

Field Day:

We need Band captains ! Band captains bring their own radios and computers.
Antennas and antenna accessories are supplied by the Club.

Larry W1AST has volunteered to step up for 40m CW.
Jeff NT1K will be contacting the Parks & Rec dept.

Field Day will be discussed at the next membership meeting.

Open Floor

More special classes and presentations.

– Introduction to digital modes
– Tips and Tricks on Towers
– Contesting in general/Awards chasing
– Member Benefits

EZ-UP with Walls

Gary made a query as to purchasing a good EZ-UP for the Club. In the $300 range.

One with walls. A motion to purchase a EZ-UP with walls and not to exceed $300
was made.

In Favor – 7
Apposed – 0

The Big E’s 100th

The discussion was around HCRA participating for only a weekend. Gary will look
into getting permission and location. Participants will be required to purchase their own entry tickets for each day. To be successful, we need to make this a very
big deal. SDR’s, HF live, Multiple Monitors, tower, large antenna. More will be
discussed at the next BOD meeting .

Next meeting with be in Mid March and be a VOIP meeting.
Jeff will be handling the details with “Google Hangouts”

HCRA’s Amateur Radio License Class – April 2016


Hampden County Radio Assocation Amateur Radio License Class
April 2016

Are you or do you know someone who’s interested in amateur radio? Do you want to upgrade your license? The Hampden Country Radio Association (HCRA) is holding classes and study groups for those interested. With a combination of these classes and at-home studying, it’s possible to make it happen. Learn from experienced instructors who are active within the amateur radio community who are willing to help you along the way.

We now have 13 new techs, 1 new Tech+General, 5 New Generals and 1 New Extra. Class had a 97% pass rate. Next course will be planned for the Fall (Sept/Oct) 

Thank you to those who signed up 


Wednesday April 27th, 2016 – 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Thursday April 28th, 2016 – 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Saturday April 30th, 2016 – 9:00am to 3:00pm
VE Session: Saturday April 30th, 2016 – 3:15pm (Walk-Ins Welcomed)

Holyoke Medical Center Auxiliary Conference Center
575 Beech Street, Holyoke MA, 01040

Cost: FREE/$15 Exam Fee

Classes open to anyone and everyone interested in obtaining or upgrading their amateur radio license.

Our classes consist of two weekday night classes and one full Saturday class with an examination following the course. Due to the short amount of time, it’s up to the candidate to do most of the studying at home before attending the classes. The classes will cover the exam questions, provide some details about the questions and help you to better understand the material needed to pass the exam.

Even though it’s not required, it’s suggested that you purchase and use the latest edition of ARRL’s Ham Radio License Manual (Level 1/Technician) to study. Other alternatives can be found online like KB6NU’s No-Nonsense study guides (FREE For Tech/General). It’s best that you study and learn as much as possible before attending the classes.

We’re also having study groups for those who are interested in upgrading their current license to general or extra class

If you’re interested in these classes or study groups, please contact the following or fill out the form below.

Jeffrey Bail (NT1K)
P.O. Box 562
Agawam MA, 01001


HCRA Meeting, January 8th 2016. Guest Speaker will be Jeff Jolie (NM1Y)

Due to some unforeseen circumstances, Jeff (NM1Y) will not be able to make it to the meeting to give his presentation. However Jeff will be providing us with a DVD about the DXpedtion and the Yankee Clipper Contest Club (YCCC) will still be there to hold an area meeting. 

Happy new year! HCRA is starting it off with a bang!

We’ve invited Jeff Jolie (NM1Y) to be our guest speaker of the first meeting in 2016. It should be exciting as Jeff was part of the DXpedition team that activated Navassa Island. Navassa was considered to be one of the rarest DX entities because of its location and restricted access. The Crew manage to get permission and gain access to the island. During their time there, they’ve managed to make just over 140,000 contacts. Jeff will be doing a presentation about the K1N DXpedtion.

HCRA has also invited the Yankee Clipper Contest Club (YCCC) to hold an area meeting in conjunction with HCRA’s meeting. This will allow those who are intersting in contest a chance to see what it’s all about. Anyone and everyone is welcome to meeting.

Hope to see you there.

Show and Tell – April 2016


– Friday April 1st, 2016 –


The Hampden county radio association will be holding its annual show and tell on Friday, April 1st, 2016. This is where HCRA members can show off their amateur radio related projects. If you’ve been working on something over the months, bring it to April’s meeting and share it with other members and the general public. If you project was fascinating enough, you might walk away with prize!

If you haven’t started on a project by now, don’t worry. You still have 4 months to work on project which is plenty of time to create something wonderful.



Tis the season for Holiday Parties. This year HCRA and MTARA are putting together quite the feast for those who would wish to join us. We will be back at the wonderful steaming tender in Palmer MA on Monday, December 7th, 2015. Doors open at 6, Dinner starts at 7. Tickets will be just $20ea. You can purchase tickets through HCRA or MTARA.

There will be good times had by all and we will even have door prizes!

For HCRA, you can contact Harold Woering (N1FTP) ( E-mail N1FTP at arrl dot net)
You can also mail a check or money order to our P.O. Box

P.O. Box 562
Agawam MA, 01001

Please include note that you are purchasing Holiday tickets and to include Name, Callsign and phone number for each ticket.

Hope to see you there!

What: Joint HCRA/MTARA Holiday Party
When: Monday, December 7th, 2015
Where: Steaming Tender Resturant
28 Depot St, Palmer, MA 01069
Time: Doors open at 6pm, Dinner at 7pm

Notes From Last Nights Meeting (DMR W/ Steve WA1ZEV)

Digital Mobile Radio Presentation

(Presenter:  Steve Shore WA1-ZEV, October 2, 2015 Hamden County Radio Association)

**  Reference Material **


DMR Orientation:

Network Providers:

  • DMR-MARC (Motorola Amateur Radio Club)
  • CT-ARES DMR Network (State of Connecticut State Police Amateur Radio Club)
  • DCI (Digital Communications Interconnect)

Popular Web Sites:

DMR Repeater Status Web Sites:

Radio Brands:

Network Categories:

*Local          *Audio Test           *Statewide         *Regional          *North America          *Worldwide

Basic Programming Data:

  1. Frequency pair
  2. Time Slot (1 or 2)
  3. Color Code
  4. Talk Group


Digital Mobile Radio Presentation

(Presenter:  Steve Shore WA1-ZEV, October 2, 2015 Hamden County Radio Association)

**  Reference Material **

Page  2.

Getting Started

Getting started with DMR is easy! Just follow the four steps below and you’ll be up and running in no time!

1. Check for DMR Coverage

Verify that you are within the coverage area of a DMR repeater using the DMR repeater map, or if you are in the Greater Toronto Area, check out the interactive repeater coverage map.

2. Get a Subscriber ID

All radios on ham radio DMR networks require a unique Subscriber ID, so you will need to have one assigned before you can program your radio to operate on a DMR repeater. If you intend to have more than one DMR radio active at any given time, then you should request a Subscriber ID for each radio.

Apply for a Subscriber ID

Within about 24 hours, you should receive your Subscriber ID via email. Please do not transmit with your DMR radio until you have received a Subscriber ID and have this programmed into your radio. Using ad-hoc Subscriber ID numbers will cause conflicts with other users on the network.

3. Obtain a DMR Radio

Obtain a DMR radio, the programming software and cable (if required for your desired radio model) from one of the sources listed on the FAQ page.

4. Program your DMR radio

Program your DMR radio using the DMR repeater specifications found on the DMR repeater map by clicking on DMR repeaters in your local area, plus the Subscriber ID you received via e-mail. If you are in Canada, we have preconfigured radio programming files for the most popular DMR radio models that contain all Canadian DMR repeaters. Otherwise, please refer to the following programming tutorial for step-by-step programming instructions.

5. When all else fails or you need assistance, e-mail  Steve (WA1-ZEV)

September 10, 2015

HCRA Board Meeting September 10, 2015
Harold (N1FTP) Gary (WA1MOW) Jeff (NT1K) Bob (K1Y0) John (K1VOI) Juergen (NV1Q) Dave (WM1B) Larry (W1AST)

President summarized the activities. Still looking for a Web Master
Vice President Harold Woering was introduced and had no additional comments

Treasurer indicated he had the bank account and the electronic banking straightened out. Balance of $7, 090.67 which includes $410 dues and $202.93 in pay Pal Dues.

Gary questioned why the Financial Report was not presented to the Board. Larry (W1AST) moved that an annual report be prepared for the June meeting . Seconded by John (K1VOI) Passed

Secretary: All reports due have been submitted

Membership: At the September meeting 47 renewals 6 family and 2 probationary 39 paid.

At Large Eric (W1MOR): Absent no report

ZB Editor (WA1MOW): Handed out a sheet of HCRA Meetings and Zero Beat Dates. Also he submitted a list of information that he would like from the board.

Tech (K1YO) Nothing to report

Program (W1AST): Next month speaker is Steve (WA1ZEV) presenting a Talk on Digital Mobile Radio. Currently there are three open months. Show and Tell in April to be advertised and promoted in Zero Beat A prize to be given. Actual prize will be determined at the next BOD meeting. Possible SKYPE meeting with a famous person. EM ideas to Larry – he will pursue.


Holiday Party: Tickets must be printed and ready for the October meeting. Date December 7th. Menu Chicken Marsala and Broiled Haddock, Roasted Red Bliss Potato. Cost $20 per person club to pick up rest. Door Prize: Limit to three. Possible Gift cards Review and finalize at next BOD meeting.

Welcome Package: Jeff published a sample =first draft and requested the board to review and get comments back to him. Target date End of Year.

Open Stub J-Pole Antenna Project: Gary has the connectors. Jeff has put the project on hold due to work schedule. Gary will help as material becomes available.

HCRA Facebook: Larry moved and many seconded to make the HCRA Facebook group” closed”. Passed.

Radio Class: Conversation with Amherst to do a public class before the end of the year in Amherst and an additional class at HMC for the local people. Will be a three session and home study prior to the class followed by VEC session.


Checks to Agawam Parks & Rec and HMS $250 each Moved by Bob (K1YO) seconded by Larry(W1AST) passed.

Membership DB: Secretary: Moved that Membership be handled by Membership Chair. Approved

Membership Chair was also appointed as the administrator on the Reflector.

Juergen (NV1Q) indicated that Dave (KB1MU) had turned over the achieves to him and that he was going through them. Jeff (NT1K) indicated that he would take responsibility to store the achieves when Juergen was completed with them.

Gary (WA1MOW) suggested that we have a Saturday AM class for new hams to provide specific information on different subjects.

Meeting adjourned 8:45 PM

David Fant/WM1B

June 2015 Board Meeting Minutes

HCRA BOD Meeting Minutes
June 11th, 2015
Location: IHOP West Springfield MA
Meeting called to order by President Jeff NT1k
Daye AA1Y Larry W1AST Juergen NV1Q John K1VOI
Bob K1YO Gary WA1MOW Jeff NT1K Ed KB1NWH
Dave WM1B

Officer Reports
Past President: Great Year A lot of Fun. Transfer PO Box to Gary WA1MOW.
President – NT1K – Transition from Ed (NWH), Goals as President: Will be asking for individuals to handle the work that is their responsibility. President cannot do everything. Will be working with ARRL to draft a New Member Welcome Package. Web Site and twitter account are general access. Will be looking for a new Web-Master to take over the responsibility of the web. Looking to get HCRA into the Public Eye. Discussion on a postcard to the 700 Hams in Hamden County. Something to look at over the summer before fall.
Vice President – OPEN – Thoughts for candidate for VP?
Treasurer – NV1Q – Transition from Dave (AA1YW), Balance 6/11/2015 $ 6,825.51 Discussion to provide a donation to D-Xpedition ( ) Will curb for future meeting. Dave and Juergen To transfer books on Saturday.
Secretary – WM1B – Any paperwork due? 990-N After July and also Update ARRL Website
Director Reports
Technical – K1YO – Status report: Put up antenna in Holland for KC1DKU Blair.
Zero Beat – WA1MOW – ZB Deadline, Featured Member? Deadline for next ZB is August 28. Possible New Member , Silent Key, Technical Corner “Ask Bob”
Membership – K1VOI – Transition from Rich (N1KXR) Currently 104 Members 92 Paying. WM1B to send copy of Data Base to John K1VOI
Past At Large: Jeff reported on issues
At Large – W1MOR absent – no report
Program – W1AST – Programs for 2015/16 Season. Confirmations – November meeting set up, Balance will be finished by end of summer.

Old Business
Holiday Party – Any more places to consider? Review prices at Wilbraham CC and also keep Steaming Tender in the mix.
Field Day – AB-577 acquired for $300.00, 40-2CD repair clamps needed and are on order.
HCRA BOD Site – Should we still use it? Decision was made to drop the use of the site.
New Business
ARRL Cabinet meeting 7/11 (Boxborough)
Open Stub J-Pole Antenna Project October meeting, Cost about $20 per kit Motion made to cover the expenses of NT1K for costs of kits.
Welcome package for new operators.
Make Facebook group private. A poll to be taken of who wants it to be closed.
WM1B moves that we have membership cards for members. Dave to print. Gary seconded. Passed.
Question as to renting a van to go to Boxborough for the convention. Jeff will put it on the web for questions for interest. Gary to check on price
No membership raffle this fall.
BOD summer picnic at NT1K’s house. Last week of August . 23-29.
WM1B Moved to adjourn.
Meeting adjourned at 9:16 PM

Dave Fant Secretary

Next Meeting is Friday, September 4th 2015

Welcome to a new season of HCRA

Larry (W1AST) has been hard at work obtaining guest speakers for the upcoming season. The guest speaker for the first meeting of the season on Friday, September 4th will be Fred Stefanick (N1DPM). He will be discussing EME communications and how you don’t necessarily need a massive array of antennas to make it possible. We will also have a quick re-cap of Field Day and some other business.

It’s also that time of the year again for membership renewals.
Our online system for renewals only is open for anyone that would like to use either their paypal account or their credit card if they would like to renew online.
Or you can download, and mail in the application
We also have our annual 250 ticket raffle going on. This year we’ve stepped it up a bit. We’re raffling off a Kenwood TS-590SG HF-6M 100w base station rig (retails $1700). It’s a very excellent rig that rivals radios that are double the price. It could be possibly yours for just $10 which goes to help out HCRA.
Stay tuned…