MEMBERSHIP MEETING MINUTES – May 8, 2021
MEMBERSHIP MEETING MINUTES – May 8, 2021
Stillwater Amateur Radio Association
Virtual membership meeting held via Webex due to the COVID-19 and the unavailability of Boutwells Landing meeting room.
President: Joe KCØOIO
The meeting was called to order at 9:01 AM.
Joe KCØOIO welcomed all to the on-line virtual membership meeting using Cisco Webex.
Joe announced that our scheduled speaker, Frank K4FMH, had to cancel his presentation late this week due to family issues. Nevertheless, on short notice, Randy KDØVKB generously agreed to fill in with a presentation on his recent restoration of a 1905 wireless telegraph transmitter/receiver. Many thanks to Randy for jumping in.
1905 Wireless Telegraph from Radio Marina
Randy KDØVKB discussed his lifelong quest to find an early transmitter/receiver made available to the general public. He accomplished his quest when he happened upon a find on eBay. He was the only bidder, and became the proud owner of a “Telimco Wireless Telegraph Outfit” from the Electro Importing Company. A little research found that the first ad for the outfit first appeared in Scientific American magazine in 1905. It is generally believed that this was the first-ever advertisement run by a company selling complete radio systems to the general public. As the ad below states, the Telimco system included a battery-operated spark transmitter and a tapping-coherer receiver, also battery operated. The use of a spark transmitter and tapping-coherer receiver meant it could only be used to send and receive telegraphic dots-and-dashes, and not full audio. The price of the outfit back in 1905 was $8.50, which would be $255.85 in today’s dollars.
The outfit was listed on eBay as non-working, which Randy discovered was the truth as the induction coil, etc., were unusable. The wooden box consisted of nice tight-grained oak. Randy pulled out the guts, which involved a hammer and wood chisel as everything was held in the box with sealing wax, and replaced it with modern replacement parts after refinishing the oak box. The reproduction of the original spark gap electrodes was a challenge, but successfully accomplished. Randy needed to build a “catcher” from scratch, as an original working 1910 Electro Importing Precision DeCoherer & Coherer radio detector went on eBay for $3500.99 after 12 bids. Randy then turned his attention to successfully constructing reproduction dry cell batteries.
This was a very interesting presentation, so much so that the Secretary stopped taking detailed notes so that he could listen more closely.
The program was concluded at 9:37 AM.
Joe KCØOIO called the Business Session to order at 9:38 AM.
Secretary’s Report: Dave N9JNQ
The general minutes from the April Membership and Board meetings are posted on the SARA website.
Please report any corrections or additions to: Secretary@radioham.org
Treasurer’s Report: Rich ADØSN
Beginning Total Balance: 04/01/2021 $18,586.20
Ending Balance: 04/30/2021 $5,918.97
Ending Balance: 04/30/2021 $12,805.05
Ending Total Balance: 04/30/2021 $18,724.02
Rich ADØSN reports that there were a few expenses near the end of the month that had not yet cleared the bank, which will be reflected in next month’s report. This month’s expenses included sundry expenditures for the trailer, the recent Icom IC-7300 repair shipping cost, and the Splashtop software subscription for use at the WØEQO remote site in Park Rapids, MN.
Activities & Events
The featured speaker for Tech Topic Thursday on May 13, 2021, beginning at 7:00 PM, will be Joe Eisenberg KØNEB discussing “Kit Building Techniques For Success.”
There will be a Board meeting on Thursday, May 27, 2021, at 6:30 PM. All are welcome to join in.
A Virtual Eyeball QSO Party “Manhattan Project” will be held Friday May 28, 2021, beginning at 7:30 PM.
The next “Radios in the Park” session will be taking place on Thursday June 10, 2021, and it will be streamed live from Valley View Park in Oak Park Heights, MN, as a part of Tech Topic Thursday (“TTT”).
If you missed it, or want a refresher, most if not all of the Membership Meetings and Tech Topic Thursdays/TTTs can be found on the unlisted SARA YouTube Channel playlist found at youtube.com/ playlist?list =PLoaYHzHAObWTib9y95HDRybbRIw cfiMW.
And do not forget SARA’s social media presence on Facebook (SARA-Stillwater Amateur Radio Association) and Instagram (@sararadioham).
Field Day 2021 – Bob WØGAF
Joe KCØOIO reported that SARA’s Field Day operation is scheduled June 26 and 27, 2021. The club will have an “in the field” presence with a small gathering at one of the usual park locations, with CDC and local Covid-19 requirements in place. Due to Covid, there will be no meals provided. It is planned that an Icom IC-7300 will be in operation, with plastic baggies used to protect the microphone. Alcohol wipes and plastic wrap with be available for the logging computer keyboard. As done last year, the bulk of the activity will be club members operating from home using their own call sign. Logs can be submitted to ARRL referencing SARA-MN to add to the cumulative club score. More information will be forthcoming.
Special Events – Dave WØOXB
Edmund Fitzgerald Special Event – Dave WØOXB reported that the club will possibly be going to Split Rock this fall for the Edmund Fitzgerald Special Event. Shel NØDRX is working with the DNR Parks folks to determine securing the trail center for the weekend of October 29-31, 2021. AT this time it appears there would be a 15-person limit on folks inside the trail center. It is anticipated that we may have some at-home stations active, especially for digital, CW, etc.
White Rock Tri-State Special Event – Dave WØOXB reported that he has talked to Honorary SARA member and White Rock Mayor Rudy about having an event this summer, and the Mayor will keep August open for a possible invasion by SARA members. A special event would probably run on a Friday through Sunday schedule.
Member Support Initiatives: M.A.P. & Ham Resource Group (HRG) & More
M.A.P. – Dave WØOXB reported that he recently oversaw the installation of the 105th OXB antenna. Another installation is scheduled for Hudson, WI, on Tuesday May 11, 2021, beginning at 3:30 PM. Any interested parties are welcome to participate or just watch.
HRG – Brian NØBJE reports that we still have a full compliment of equipment for loan, including two HTs and two HF stations. Also added is a 80-6 meter center-fed Zepp for member use. Drop HRG a line at email@example.com.
Groups.io – Remember that the new SARA email reflector group is now online at https://groups.io/g/StillwaterMNAmateurRadioAssoc. This reflector is available to SARA members only, so you should apply at the groups.io site and you will be given access by the site moderator.
Radios in the Park 2021
Radios in the Park was back in action on April 29, 2021, with an attendance approaching 30. Good to see everyone after, in many cases, a one year-plus absence. There are seven more sessions planned, with the May 20 session also including a tailgate swapfest. Clean out your shack and see what you can get rid of. Additional dates are: June 10; July 1 & 22; August 12; and September 2 & 23. As in previous years, they will be held in Valley View Park in Oak Park Heights, MN. The events will be starting officially at 5:30 PM (although feel free to arrive at or any time after 5:00 PM) and run until approximately 8:00 PM. We will be following all CDC/ State Health Department guidelines for masking and distancing.
DX News: Mike NØODK
Mike NØODK reports that there has been quite a bit of Asia activity on 20 meters lately, so try pointing your antenna in that direction. A couple of DXpeditions have been canceled, while a couple are still on the books.
Mike reports and an Indonesian ham will be activating a number of different islands from June 1 through September 30, 2021. If you are an IOTA worker, here’s your chance to add to your list.
Get the latest DX news by subscribing to the ARRL DX News www.arrl.org/contest. Also check out www.ng3k.com for DX. For contests try the WA7BNM Contest Calendar contestcalendar.com.
Newsletter: Pat WAØTDA & Dave WØOXB
Pat WAØTDA noted that the May SARA Signals Newsletter was the final one for this season. We will be starting up again in September right before our September 11, 2021, membership meeting. A thanks to all contributors throughout the season.
Remote Base Project (RBP): Pat WAØTDA
Pat WAØTDA reports that the remote bases are working great. Bill NØCIC, our WØEQO station administrator up in Park Rapids, MN, is now online using Splashtop as a remote software package, which Pat reports is working well. Bill is reluctant at this time to replace the WØEQO computer as it is working fine at the moment. Pat will be identifying the files that will need to be transferred to new computers for the WØEQO and WØZSW stations.
SARA Signals For Sale Page: The SARA website “for sale” page is in the works. Members with items they would like to list should send Bob an email with the the item described, pricing, etc., and he will post it. There will be a time limit for the listing, something like 60 days, so the listing does not become outdated.
Sunday Digital Fusion Net on the SARA Repeater: To take advantage of the SARA Fusion repeater’s digital capabilities, Bob WØGAF is leading a Sunday Night Digital Voice Net on the SARA repeater beginning at 7:00 PM. All are welcome to join in.
2nd Saturday Morning Breakfasts: Joe KCØOIO asked whether there was any interest in beginning again the second Saturday morning breakfasts starting this June 12. Interest was there, so Joe will contact Perkins to see if they can accommodate a group.
Outdoor Eyeball QSO: Joe KCØOIO asked whether there was any interest in holding in-person eyeball sessions at an outdoor venue. Interest was expressed, so we will look at the availability of Valley View park for an upcoming Thursday.
Metro Skywarn: Joe KCØOIO reported that Metro Skywarn has asked about whether anyone in SARA may have interest in creating a net control team for the east side of the Twin Cities. There is a Maple Grove and a Twin Cities FM Club team that are active; the Bloomington group is floundering due to the loss of its president and another active member moving out of town. Only Maple Grove is consistently active. There is the possibility of putting something together with SEMARC. The commitment would be two weeks every six weeks, as the net control responsibilities rotate through the three active groups every two weeks. Drop Joe an email if you have any interest.
Remote Station: Dave WØOXB reported that a member is moving and has equipment that he no longer needs and was wondering if there would be any interest from membership in using the equipment on loan to set up a remote station, possibly at a cabin or similar location. Further discussion will be had at a later date.
Brad VE3MXJ North-of-the-Border Report: Brad VE3MXJ reports that there is a lot going on at RAC ARES, including the changing of the name of ARES to OXCOM. Next week, Monday through Friday, the Coast Guard Emergency Services is heading an exercise in coordination with the Duluth Coast Guard group, with a Houghton, Michigan group taking the lead role. The primary activities will be taking place on Tuesday May 12. An HF/VHF communications grid is being developed by the Lake Superior ARES Group, with Winlink being incorporated in a big way.
Brad reports that a Winlink Canada-wide working group committee is being created, with Brad participating on the committee.
Brad reminded folks that today is America Red Cross Day.
Last, but not least, Canwarn, the Canadian equivalent of Skywarn, is having an exercise on Wednesday May 26, 2021, with a net on 3.675 MHz beginning at 5:00 PM EDT, followed by check-ins on 7.135 MHz.
Hams in the Park: Joe KCØOIO announced that Hams in the Park is once again active on the second Saturday of the Month at 12:00 PM in Long Lake Park in New Brighton, MN.
SEMARC Minnesota Statehood Special Event: Joe KCØOIO announced that that SEMARC will be holding a Minnesota Statehood Special Event on May 11, 2021, in Stillwater, Minnesota, traditionally called “the birthplace of Minnesota”, commemorating the 163rd anniversary of Minnesota statehood. The event will take place at Pioneer Park in Stillwater. There will be two stations operating. See the SEMARC website for details.
Wearables: Do not forget that SARA-labeled hats, shirts, jackets, and other wearables are available from www.hamthreads.com. SARA members will receive a discount on all orders. Brian NØBJE asked whether the newer SARA logo could be incorporated into the hamthreads options. There will need to be some consideration of the ability to digitize the graphics.
On the motion of Zack AAØU, seconded by George KØGCP, the business portion of the meeting was adjourned at 10:29 AM.
Meeting attendance: 23