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Multiple Demonstrations featured at March 2018 meeting of St. Croix Amateur Radio Club

Multiple Demonstrations featured at March 2018 meeting of St. Croix Amateur Radio Club

In addition to the normal discussion, the monthly meeting of the St. Croix Amateur Radio Club that occurred on Saturday March 3 featured three exciting demonstrations to further the knowledge of Ham radio operators in attendance.

Reynaldo Boss, WP2RB brought in several PC power supplies that were converted for HAM radio use.  PC power supplies feature high amperage ratings along with 12v, 5v, and 3.3v DC outputs.  The 12v output is perfect for running VHF rigs while the 5v output can be wired in for USB powered devices.  Reynaldo went through how to short the power connectors to ensure the supply turns on to the colors of the wires and what they mean.  Here is a link to a similar project for anyone interested: http://www.instructables.com/id/ATX–%3E-Lab-Bench-Power-Supply-Conversion/

Chris Millette, NP2EL, demonstrated a 2m Yagi constructed affordably out of pieces of tape measure and PVC pipe.  These kinds  of projects prove especially useful in disaster situations where supplies are limited and you have to make due with what is on hand.  The antenna tuned up nicely as demonstrated on an MFJ-259b antenna analyzer with an SWR of around 1.2.

Bob Wakefield, WP2E did a demonstration on building a cheap HDTV antenna based on an article he found in popular communications located at http://www.wa5vjb.com/references/CheapYagi4HDTV.pdf.

Bob Wakefield demonstration

Bob Wakefield, WP2E, demonstrates his EZ HDTV Antenna

Sean Cullinan, WP2SC demonstrated the SharkRF openSpot along with a Baofeng DM5R radio for DMR and an ICOM ID-51A Plus 2 that he uses for DStar.  The demonstration featured a 20,100 Anker power bank, an AT&T phone configured as a mobile hotspot, and a Vonets Wifi-Ethernet Repeater bridge to provide the openSpot with internet connectivity from the phone.  A QSO with a station in Texas was successfully completed on DMR talkgroup 3100 showing how very cheap radios can use this technology to talk not only locally but also globally as long as basic internet infrastructure was present.  The club is going to investigate linking this to Ham Mesh networking in the future.

The St. Croix Amateur Radio club meets monthly starting around noon on the first Saturday of each month at the Deep End Bar and Grill.  If you are interested please join us!  If you would like to join the club annual dues are just $5 giving access to a wealth of knowledge in the collective minds of members to tap and a great community of Hams that are committed to ensuring reliable communications in our territory.

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