Fitzgerald Crew 2011
The Joe Simonet WØTBC Memorial Award
2017 SARA Officers
Ice Station WØJH 2014
OXB Special Install
2018 WØTBC Memorial Award-NØDRX
AGØH 2013
2023 Simonet Memorial Award
New Radio Gear For Some SARA Members!
WØJH 2004

Membership Meeting Minutes – April 11, 2015

Stillwater Amateur Radio Association

1618 Pine Street West

Stillwater, Minnesota 55082


President: Joe KCØOIO

The meeting was called to order at 9:00 AM.

Secretary’s Report: Steve KAØOBI

The minutes from the March 14th, 2015 meeting were approved as published.

Treasurer’s Report: John N5JLZ

Beginning Balance:     3/1/2015         $2,897.41

Income:                                                 $235.00

Expenses:                                               $29.80

Ending Balance:          3/31/2015      $3,102.61

Education and Training: Bob WØGAF

Spring Technician Classes end April 23, 2015 and will be held at Boutwells.

Spring Technician VE Session – April 30, 2015 at Boutwells from 6 to 9 PM. Looking for one additional VE for this session.

New Ham Hands-on Skills & Demo – scheduled for May 21st from 6 to 8:30PM at Pioneer Park, Stillwater. Topics to be discussed include: programming radios, using repeaters, operating simplex, checking into formal nets, and using common protocol on VHF & UHF.

Activities & Events: Dave WØOXB

Thursday Night Eyeball Sessions – Held every Thursday at 6:00 PM CDT at the Stillwater Public Library.

Field Day 2015 is scheduled for June 27th to 28th at Autumn Hills Park, Oak Park Heights.

Mobile & Portable Operating Show ‘N Tell – scheduled for Saturday, June 13th from 9 to 10:30 AM at Autumn Hills Park, Oak Park Heights. Event will include assembling mobile and portable stations, erecting and matching antennas, grounding, and hints, tricks and tips.

White Rock Tri-State Special Event – planning for September, exact date TBD (either 11th -13th or 18th – 20th).

SARA Mentor Project – Need volunteers to mentor one or two new hams and get them on the air and more involved in the hobby.

Remembering the Edmund Fitzgerald 40th Anniversary event – scheduled for Oct 30th to Nov 1st at Split Rock State Park, Beaver Bay, MN.

Handihams: Pat WAØTDA & Dave WØOXB

HEART (Handiham Equipment Assessment Repair & Tracking) – volunteers are needed now to help.

Radio Camp – August 18th – 24th at Camp Courage, Maple Lake, MN. VE session will be held on Sunday, Aug 23rd in the Woodland Dining Hall.

Handihams will be at Dayton Hamvention May 15th -17th in Booth 330 by Flex Radio.

Washington County ARES: John KAØHYR (not present)

Project Day is scheduled for Saturday, April 25th from 9:30 AM till Noon at Woodbury High School, Room 248. For more information go to

Washington County Prairie Island Reception Center Drill on June 10th and FEMA graded exercise on July 22nd.

Public Safety Whole Community Expo – May 2nd – from 10 AM to 2 PM. For additional details go to their website at

Digital Net: Joe KCØOIO

SARA DigiNet will be on summer hiatus.

2 Meter ragchew will be on Wednesday night at 9 PM CDT. 147.060 MHz.

1.966 KHz Round Robin Ragchew – 8 PM CDT every night except Tuesday and Thursday.

River Valley Slow Speed CW Net – has had promising testing results on 15 & 6 Meters and poor results on 80 & 40 Meters. Watch for future test runs this Fall.

Newsletter & Website: Pat WAØTDA, Dave WØOXB, Peter NØGRM, & Keith AGØH

Deadline for articles for the newsletter is the last Saturday of the month. Always looking for new contributors.

DX News: Mike NØODK (not present)

Check for the DX & Contest Calendar. SARA still offers an outgoing DX QSL service – contact Bob WØGAF for details.

Good of Association: Joe KCØOIO

Upcoming Meeting Programs:

May – Mike Tabbert KCØIQW – Broadband HamNet

Oct – Mike Paskeuric NØODK – Fun with DXing

Future program ideas include: SSTV & EasyPal, fresh look at APRS (Automatic Packet Reporting System), Maidenhead Grid Squares, hamming with smartphones and tablets.

Hamfests coming soon:

April 18th – Brainerd Hamfest in Brainerd Armory – 0900 to 1300

May 2th – ARAC Swapmeet in Superior, WI

May 15th -17th – Dayton Hamvention

June 6th – TwinsLAN Tailgate Swap fest at 3M Ctr (date may be changed for security issues)

SEMARC Meeting – April 28th – at Zion Lutheran Church, 8500 Hillside Trail S, Cottage Grove.

ADA Tour de Cure – Saturday, May 30st – see Joe KCØOIO if you can volunteer.

2015 Ironman – Sunday, April 26th 6 AM to 6 PM. The repeater will be in use for this event.

The business part of the meeting adjourned at 9:34 AM.


Program: Lyle Koehler KØLR, What We Mean By Software Defined Radio

Lyle gave a well-organized overview of SDR and some great demonstrations of inexpensive ways to experience this technology.

Software-defined radio (SDR) is a radio communication system where components that have been typically implemented in hardware (e.g. mixers, filters, amplifiers, modulators/demodulators, detectors, etc.) are instead implemented by means of software processes.

Unique Features of SDR include: Waterfall and panoramic spectrum display, point and click tuning, completely configurable filters, multiple simultaneous receivers, and audio/RF recording feature.

Negatives for some people: Not a ‘single box’ radio, computer required, non-traditional user interface, too many choices, might be necessary to read the manual, accessibility, and cost.

Special uses for SDR: VHF/UHF band monitor (with transverter), IF panadapter, and “IF DSP” for existing transceiver.

Demos: RTL-SDR dongle, playback of DX contest on 20 meters, and “SDR-enhanced” IC-706.

SDR Resources: QST product reviews, “Cheap and Easy SDR” – QST Jan 2013, Wikipedia, and

Examples of SDR Radios: Flex $700 – $7,500, Apache Labs(ANAN) $1,000 – $4,300, Fun Cube dongle $210, Soft Rock Lite kit (HF, RX, single band) $21, RTL-SDR dongle (RX 24-1700 MHz) $15.


Meeting was adjourned at 10:30 AM.

Meeting attendance: 24