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Franklin County Amateur
Radio Club

Current club news is on this page. For older items see the News Archive. The Communicator newsletter index is here.

The Activities page is our detailed calendar of events, updated 2/10/2018. We also have an FCARC Facebook group. What's new here? See the Website Change Notes

April 2018 FCARC Communicator
posted 4/1/2018

The April 2018 Communicator should be in your e-mailbox now. If you get it via US Mail look for it soon. You can download it from www.fcarc.org/communicator/comm201804.pdf.


March Program Change: WIRES
posted 3/15/2018

Eric Mazur KA1SUN, president of NOBARC, has agreed to do a WIRES X presentation at the FCARC meeting March 19.

Mt Greylock repeater has Wires X capability.

WIRES (Wide-coverage Internet Repeater Enhancement System) is an Internet communication system which expands the range of amateur radio communication. For WIRES-X, an amateur node station connecting to the Internet is used as the access point and connects the wireless communication to the Internet. Users' stations can communicate with other amateur stations all over the world using a node within the radio wave range.


Update: February 2018 VE Session
posted 3/8/2018

FCC confirmation of results of the 2/26/2018 Northfield VE session came through on March 7th. Congratulations to two new Technicians, KC1JFB, Amy from Rowe, and KC1JEV, Dennis from Ashfield. We hope we'll hear them on the air soon. Bruce KC1FRF upgraded to General class at the same session.


Coming in March:
posted 3/1/2018
  • Saturday March 10: Mt Tom Amateur Repeater Association Hamfest Castle of Knights, Chicopee. More info in Communicator and at http://www.mtara.org
  • Saturday Mar 17: 8:00 am Breakfast, Denny's Pantry; 10:00 am Emergency Communications Group, GCC Hammond Studio
  • Monday Mar 19: 6:00 pm E-Board;, 7:15 pm Program Meeting; GCC Hammond Studio: Echo Link (etc)
  • Monday Feb 26: 6:00 pm Technician License Class, at GCC, first of six Mon/Wed sessions. Details in March Communicator


License Class Result: Eight New Technicians
posted 10/27/2017

The ARRL VEC and the FCC work very fast these days. Participants in the FCARC license class at GCC took their Technician tests Saturday 10/21. It was too late for the last pickup at Greenfield Post Office, so results did not leave Greenfield until the following Monday morning. By Thursday evening new calls were posted on the FCC website. Please look for these new hams: Rebecca KC1IJG, Karen KC1IJH, Kyle KC1IJI, Erika KC1IJJ, Trevor KC1IJK, Ted KC1IJL, Jesse KC1IJM, and Mark, KC1IJN.


FCARC 2017-2018 Activities
posted 9/28/2017

Our Activities calendar has been updated for the 2017-2018 club year. It is available online by clicking the "Activities" tab on the www.fcarc.org web page. A PDF version is available for download as http://www.fcarc.org/Files/FCARCcalendar1718.pdf. The Activities page may be updated from time to time, so be sure to consult it for changes.


KB1BSS Leyden Repeater Progress
posted 8/24/2017

Our antenna on the WPVQ tower has been replaced with a brand new Hustler G-144. A brace fabricated by Scott, N1LYW has been added to prevent wind damage.

[Tower climbers]


Nominations Open for WMA Section Manager
posted 8/24/2017

This notice comes from the ARRL Western Massachusetts Section website,

WMA ARRL Nominations for Western Massachusetts Section Manager
are now open!  The term is for two years starting on January 1,

Any candidate for the office of Section Manager must be a
resident of the section, a licensed amateur of Technician class
or higher, and a full member of the League for a continuous term
of at least two years immediately preceding receipt of a
petition for nomination.  All nomination paperwork must be
received by ARRL Headquarters in Newington, CT by 4:00 PM on
Friday, September 8, 2017.  The nomination forms and other
associated information are available on ARRL HQ�s website here.

Due to increased professional commitments as well as some health
issues, current Section Manager Ed Emco W1KT will not be
running for election again.


Preliminary Field Day 2017 Results
posted 7/24/2017
Call    Score   Class QSOs Mult GOTA    Sec    #    Club
AC1L    3934    2A    974  2    KB1MSU  WMA    23   Franklin Co ARC 
     QSOs: HF c.w. 618, phone: 356 (HF: 243, GOTA: 79, VHF: 34)
     QSO points: 3184, bonus points: 750, total: 3934 (Submitted entry is here). 
Summaries of all FCARC Field Day scores since 2016 can be seen here.


Amateur Radio License Class at GCC
posted 7/21/2017

Members of the Franklin County Amateur Radio Club will present an amateur radio license class at Greenfield Community College in October. There will be four 6 to 9 p.m. evening sessions, Tuesdays and Thursdays, October 10, 12, 17, and 19, followed by a 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday session October 21st. The Saturday session will be a review, followed by an opportunity to take the test for a Technician Class Amateur Radio License.

The official description of the class can be seen on the GCC Lifelong Learning Web Page. Please note, the classes are free, the $15 charge mentioned on the website is the fee for taking the license test.


Leyden Repeater Lightning Damage
updated 7/12/2017

On June 19 There was lightning damage at the FCARC Leyden (Frizzell Hill) repeater site. The Leyden repeater is now back on the air on 146.985 MHz using one of the new Yaesu DR-1X repeaters we previously had operating at 448.875 MHz on Rocky Mountain in Greenfield. The power is a little less, sophisticated control functions and synthesized voice announcements are not available, but it works.

For local coverage in Greenfield and Turners Falls we still have one repeater operating on 147.120 MHz at the Greenfield site. We still have not determined whether the lightning damage in Leyden affected the controller or the transmitter. There is more to be done this summer, including a new antenna in Leyden.


Web Page Cleanup!!!
posted 3/1/2017

In order to make this page load faster the webmaster is removing many obsolete articles. Articles thought to be of continuing interest are saved to the News Archive page. But almost everything is backed up offline. Contact the webmaster if you are looking for information that has been removed. Also, note that the FCARC Communicator newsletter on-line archives go back more than 10 years.


Report: Montague Sawmill River 10K Road Race December 31st
posted 1/9/2017

Despite a late start in recruiting volunteers we had an adequate team for the Sawmill River 10K road race in Montague, on December 31st. Joe,KB1WVO, coordinated our effort, which was much appreciated by the Montague Recreation Department. There were no problems with weather (although it was cold) and no lost runners. The baked potato lunch was much appreciated by runners and volunteers.


Weekly Nets Reminder
posted 9/9/2016

The FCARC sponsors two weekly nets on the Leyden 146.985 MHz repeater. On Tuesdays at 9 p.m. the Emergency Net is a time for practicing formal net procedures and sharing information about emergency readiness. On Thursdays at 8 p.m. the Information Net is a less formal occasion for chatting about news and activities, just about anything of interest. For details, including schedules of net control operators, see the Net Listings page on the website.

On Sunday mornings the weekly Western Massachusetts Emergency Net meets on the Mt Tom 146.940 MHz repeater at 8:45 a.m. FCARC members are encouraged to check in. You can also check into a similar net on the Mt Greylock 146.910 repeater at 9:00 a.m.

Are you interested in practicing Morse Code? The Snail Net is a slow speed CW practice net which meets on the 80 meter band on or near 3.532 MHz on Sundays and Wednesdays at 8 p.m. - more info can be found on the Snail Net page. Even if you have a Technician license you can operate CW on this part of the 80 meter band.

Club members with licenses allowing voice operation on the 75 meter band are also encouraged to check into the Sunday morning 75 meter net at 8:30 a.m.on 3.944 MHz. Checking into nets like this is a good way to become familiar with net procedures and to be assured that if an emergency occurs your equipment will be adequate.


FCARC on Facebook
posted 8/10/2015

The Franklin County Amateur Radio Club now has a Facebook Page!

N1AW says: I suggested this to the club a few times without getting an enthusiastic response. But Facebook is a good medium for many people who are used to being connected electronically at all times. The website and the Communicator will remain the main channels for club information. It is easy to communicate on Facebook. And any member who has information to share can post. Other ham clubs in our area, HCRA and MTARA, have both found it useful.

Thanks to Chet, N1XPT, who took the initiative to get the Facebook page started.


WRTC on NPR "Only A Game" - Available On-Line
posted 8/11/2014

Local broadcast of the NPR "Only A Game" program on WFCR comes on Saturdays from 7 to 8 a.m. Last week near the end of the program there was a 9 minute segment about WRTC, the World Radiosport Team Competition, the "Olympics of Amateur Radio." At that very time many FCARC members were busy getting ready for the Bridge of Flowers 10K in Shelburne Falls. If you missed it you can still catch it on line at http://onlyagame.wbur.org/2014/08/09/wrtc-radiosport-ham-radio.

You can listen to the audio, download it as an MP3 file, or read the transcript. This has got to be one of the best programs about amateur radio ever presented on national media.


Contest Operator Haiku
posted 03/28/2011
I'm hearing voices
They're all so soft and distant
but logged as five nine.
  -- Scott Andersen, NE1RD

(We don't normally steal items from the newsletter for the web page, but this one was irrestible.)


Older news items may now be found on the FCARC News Archive page.


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