Club Meeting 6 November 2019

Minutes of the Napier Amateur Radio Club

Meeting on Wednesday 6 November 2019 at the Clubrooms 123 Latham Street

Chair: Dave ZL2MQ, the meeting started at 7:30pm.

Present: Wally ZL2MO, Errol ZL2IT, Mike ZL2VM, Dave ZL2DW, Blue ZL3TT, Revell ZL2SS, Stu ZL2XC, Rob ZL2AN, Martin ZL2MD, Karl ZL1TJ, Peter ZL2CD and Mike ZL2MY. Apologies: ZL2HB, ZL2ST. (2MO, 2MQ)

Minutes of the previous meeting: Read and confirmed to be correct: ZL3TT, ZL2XC.

Arising: Dave 2DW informed Warren 2AJ regarding the decision not to take up his offer to link HB repeaters to the proposed South Waikato network.

Correspondence: Inward: Yahoo groups moving from message board format to email platform, existing data may be downloaded for preservation. Mail from Simon Osborne ZL2TSO, active again, replied and cc’d to 2DW. From Mike 2VM: updated HB Hams list. From the Napier Citizen’s Advice Bureau, the NARC listing on their bulletin board, responded with corrections. From the Unison Consumers Trust advice regarding energy refund. From RSM, License fees of $100 due on 30 November.

Outward: To RSM, cancellation of two beacon licenses. To the Te Puke Radio Club: Thank you but no thank you to the proposal to link their extended repeater system to 725, received a brief acknowledgement to this. Various notices to members. Venue info to the Conference sub-committee.

Finance: Treasurers report attached.

General business: Karl: downloaded Yahoo bulletin board contents for future reference, for some unknown reason Branch 13 content came with it.

Dave 2DW: questioned the de-activation of the Club’s beacons. Responded to by Dave 2MQ: The beacon design, being software driven caused some interference to nearby stations. Both a rebuild or relocation of the beacons were considered but found to be not practicable. An alternative being looked into is using WSPR on HF, a future project.

The meeting closed at 7:45 pm and was followed by the AGM.

After the AGM the annual Home Brew contest took place. Two entries only: Errol ZL2IT presented two transmitters for the 630 m band. Both designed by himself. The more powerful one (250W) posing the greatest challenge as currents through the low impedance side of matching networks are substantial.

Revell ZL2SS, while searching for alternative sources of energy to do his bit to counter global warming experimented with an ancient bicycle generator. Equipped with led lights the demonstration proved that just minor input energy can in fact light up the room. (well, sort off).

The prize went to Erroll, with a pat on the back to Revell for an entertaining presentation.

Karl ZL1TJ

Club Meeting 2 October 2019


Meeting on Wednesday 2 October 2019 at the Clubrooms 123 Latham Street

Chair: Dave ZL2MQ, the meeting started at 7:30 pm.

Dave read out the death notice of Karen Wilson ZL2AQO who was secretary / treasurer of the Napier ARC for many years. A brief silence was observed.

Present: Peter ZL2CD, Revel ZL2SS, Martin ZL2MD, Dave ZL2DW, Blue ZL3TT, Rob ZL2AN, Stu ZL2XC and Karl ZL1TJ.

Apologies: ZL2MO, ZL2HB, ZL2ST and ZL2IT.

Minutes of previous meeting: Read and confirmed to be correct: ZL3TT, ZL2CD.

Arising: Dave 2DW:The Mt Threave repeater co-ordinates were determined and submitted.

Dave 2MQ: our attempt to book the Napier Memorial Conference Centre for the 2021 NZART Conference failed. There is a perpetual booking for the QBD weekend in place.

Correspondence: with Syd Rowe ZL1LWR, Te Puke ARC, regarding proposed linking of their repeater with Rotorua, Taupo and so with our 725 repeater. Also with Warren ZL2AJ who proposes to establish several new repeaters in South Waikato and link these to the local 405 repeater.

A confirmation and offer of assistance with the 2021 conference organisation from NZART Conference Coordinator Topsy Scott ZL2LS.

A newsletter from Icom agent RWS Communications.

Finance: Treasurer’s report attached. The last power account jumped to $131.14. The consequence of the clubroom heater being left on for several days. A cut-out timer is needed.

General Business: A discussion regarding to the two proposals to link Hawke’s Bay repeaters to other networks (see correspondence above) ended with both repeater trustees (2DW and 2MQ) voicing opinions that there is no need for this as the National System does a similar job and works well. A negative response was agreed to by all present. Dave 2DW to respond to Warren 2AJ, Karl to the Te Puke ARC.

The meeting closed at 7:50 pm.

And was followed by our annual quiz, once again devised by quiz master Dave 2MQ. The usual format, 10 general knowledge and 10 technical questions were within the easy to not so easy range.

The winner: new member Martin ZL2MD who did the licensing study recently so should know the tech stuff but has obviously also a great deal of general knowledge.

The sticky buns were fresh and beautiful. Thanks Dave.

Karl ZL1TJ

Club Meeting 4 September 2019

Minutes of the Gen. Meeting of Br 25/NARC, Napier, 4/9/19, 7-30pm

(Min’s taken by David ZL2DW due to Karl ZL1TJ being absent)

Chair: Dave ZL2MQ

Present: Wally ZL2MO, Blue ZL3TT, Michael ZL2MY, Dave ZL2DW, Rob ZL2AN, Martin ZL2MD, Stan ZL2ST, Errol ZL2IT, Revell ZL2SS and Peter ZL2CD.

Apologies: Karl ZL1TJ, Michael ZL2VM, Stu ZL2XC.

Minutes of the previous meeting: Read and confirmed correct: ZL3TT, ZL2MD


– a reply from Warren ZL2AJ on behalf of NZART Council accepting the offer by Br 25 to host the 2021 NZART Conference and AGM at Napier.


– a report from Peter ZL2CD was given re the Br 25 bank balances, he also noted that Kiwi Bank was about to decline cheque deposits and to stop their customers issuing cheques also.

– A White Board was donated to Br 25 by Wally ZL2MO (value $10).

General Business:

– ZL2MD asked about the requirement for the upcoming DMR repeater Lic. at Mt Threave to have a Long. and Lat. as measured at the base of the repeater aerial mast. David ZL2DW explained that it was a request by the licencing ARC (Doug ZL2TAR) and as it was being done for free we would comply, as soon as the info. was obtained during a visit to the site.

– Further to the NZART Conference correspondence above, David ZL2MQ said that the first Conference Committee meeting would be held at the Br 25 Club Rooms at 7-30 pm on 17 Sept.

The Meeting closed at 7-45pm

Guest Speaker

Errol ZL2IT gave a talk on the history and creation of 50 OHM coax cable. This was followed by contributions by those gathered on various subjects……….peppered with much humour.

Club Meeting 3.5.2017


Meeting on Wednesday 3 May 2017 at the Clubrooms 123 Latham Street

Chair: Dave ZL2MQ, the meeting started at 7:30 pm.

Present: Revell ZL2SS, Blue ZL3TT, Rob ZL2US, Peter ZL2CD, Dave ZL2DW, Wally ZL2MO, Paul ZL2HB, Mike ZL2VM and Karl ZL1TJ. Apologies: ZL2IT.

Minutes of previous meeting: Read and confirmed to be correct: ZL3TT, ZL2HB.

Arising: Wally: Engineer John Foote, being too busy at present, was told not to proceed with the mast project. Mike 2VM: thank you to Wally for all the work he has done for the club recently.

Dave 2MQ: thanks to Mike 2VM for opening the clubrooms for antenna experimentation / testing on Saturday 22.4. Would there be support for a regular monthly technical afternoon meeting?

Mike: Some two years ago the club ran a social / chat meeting on a monthly basis, usually Sunday afternoon. This was initially well supported but eventually came to an end.

After some discussion it was agreed to revive this but with a more technical slant.

Second Sunday of the month, starting time 1:30 pm.

Correspondence: Email from ELG’s Steve Fogerty about the 2m beacon licence having been created, confirmation from RSM still to come. Outward: confirmation of receipt of this.

Other inward: Bank correspondence, statements and cheque book. NZART annual info request.

Finance: No transactions reported.

General Business: Dave 2MQ: Consequent to the most recent Jock White Field day contest investigated building the necessary filters to prevent cross band interference at future contests.

Mr Morris White ZL2AAA offered to build these for the cost of the cores only. The resulting professional looking band pass filters for 40 and 80 metres were presented by Dave.

A great addition to the club’s equipment.  Moved by 1TJ and seconded by 2HB that Dave 2MQ be re-imbursed for the cost of materials. Passed. Karl to send thank you note to Morris ZL2AAA.

Dave 2MQ: the club project (Arduino based swr bridge) is progressing. Estimated specs: 1.8 to 450 MHz, 1Kw power rating, sensitive enough to use as Field Strength meter, ‘pip’ mode audio function.

Initial costing $150. Some pre- soldering of surface mount ic’s to be done by soldering experts.

Kitset to be offered to non club members at a price assuring a reasonable return to the club.

Remits to the forthcoming NZART Rotorua conference: voting ZL2MQ, 2MO, 2VM, 2CD, 1TJ.

Remit 1: In favour 4, abstained 1

Remit 2: In favour 5

Remit 3: In favour 4, abstained 1

As none of the members present intend to attend the conference Karl is to seek a delegate willing to represent Branch 25. Options are Laurie ZL2TC or Debbie ZL2DL.

The meeting closed at 9:50 pm.

Followed by an attempt by 1TJ to connect to and demonstrate SDR Northland Radio, ZM292 using a laptop computer connected to the internet through a cellphone in ‘hotspot’ mode. The screen being projected on the wide screen allowed all to follow proceedings. The concept of using remote receivers in quiet locations is becoming increasingly interesting as suburban noise levels are making reception of weak signals difficult. Wally operated the club station on 40 and 80 m but the signal did not appear to reach the Bay of Islands. Also: the internet connection was not really adequate.

Karl ZL1TJ Sec. NARC.

October 2015 Club meeting

Meeting on Wednesday 7 October 2015 at the Clubrooms 123 Latham Street

Chair: Karl ZL1TJ, the meeting started at 7:30 pm.

Present: Erroll ZL2IT, Revell ZL2SS, Peter ZL2CD, Dave ZL2DW, Paul ZL2HB, Mike ZL2MY, Rob ZL2US, Blue ZL3TT, Wally ZL2MO and Stan ZL2ST.

Apologies: ZL2TC, ZL2CZE, ZL2OC, ZL2DC, ZL2VM.

Minutes of the previous meeting were read and confirmed correct: ZL3TT, ZL2MY.

Arising: Dave ZL2DW reported the 725 and 4050 antennas on Taraponui were repaired by three senior members (2DW, 2TC and 2VM) refer to Break-Out of the details.

Rob reported the successful re-activation of the IRLP node 6793 (725 repeater). The hardware is now located at the Branch 13 clubrooms, connected by microwave link to his QTH. Much of the work was done by Jan ZL2CZE. The Hawke’s Bay amateur radio fraternity is indebted to Bch13.
The forthcoming combined branches Christmas dinner was discussed and a preference for the Napier RSA restaurant was evident. Karl to check out and book.

Correspondence: Email correspondence regarding Mark ZL3AB’s running of the Lee Jennings activity marathon. Also correspondence from Dave ZL2DW about Ray Barlow ZL2RB becoming the 3rd Branch 13 and Branch 25 exam supervisor.

Finance: Received account for repeater maintenance ($25).

General Business:
A reminder that another effort is needed to complete the exterior repaint of the clubrooms.
A working bee is to be called by Laurie.
Wally ZL2MO confirmed: the rotator for the HF yagi antenna is ready to go

Rob ZL2US reported that this month’s Branch 13 meeting is advanced one week to October 21.
The meeting will be held at ‘Skinny Mulligans’ Waipawa and will be preceded by a meal.
Bookings to Dave ZL2DW, see Rob about carpooling.

Further suggested speakers for the proposed 2016 Bay Hamfest: Dr Gary Bold ZL1AN and Jim Meachen ZL2BHF. Karl to check and write.
The annual quiz and sticky bun event has been postponed to the December meeting.

The meeting closed at 8:10 pm.

A discussion on VHF propagation was initiated by Dave ZL2DW. Erroll ZL2IT discussed recent successes bridging the Tasman on 2m SSB transmitting 50Watts.
The evening was rounded off with the usual chit-chat over a cup of tea and a biscuit.
Karl ZL1TJ, Secretary Branch 25.

Switch Project Kitset Assembly

May 19, 2015 saw Laurie ZL2TC, Revell ZL2SS, Mike ZL2VM, Karl ZL1TJ, Stan ZL2ST, Peter ZL2CD and Lee ZL2AL at the clubrooms assembling the 4 Part Antenna Switch kitsets. All the various parts were bagged along with the comprehensive instructions to be readied for Post Office shipment in another week.

Many hands make light work counting out the hundreds of screws, nuts, washers and parts.

Many hands make light work counting out the hundreds of screws, nuts, washers and parts.

Job Well Done Team!!!

Left to right: Mike ZL2VM, Pater ZLZ2CD, Laurie ZL2TC, Karl ZL1TJ, Stan ZL2ST, Revell ZL2SS and Lee ZL2AL behind the camera. Job Well Done Team!!!

A club project working together always seems to bring out the best in people and it is a lot of fun and a few laughs combined with a great feeling of satisfaction.

73, Lee ZL2AL

NARC Minutes – May 6, 2015


Meeting Wednesday 6 May 2015 – Clubrooms 123 Latham Street

Chair: Laurie ZL2TC, the meeting started at 7:30 pm.

Apologies: ZL2VM, ZL2AL, ZL2LF, ZL2US.

Present: Wally ZL2MO, Revell ZL2SS, Peter ZL2CD, Dave ZL2DW, Blue ZL3TT, Stan ZL2ST, Mike ZL2MY, Ray ZL2RB, Marty ZL2PX and Karl ZL1TJ.

Minutes of the previous meeting were read and confirmed correct: ZL2TC, ZL2ST.

Arising: Dave ZL2DW: The April ECI net was run by Laurie and himself. There was sufficient participation. Dave suggests a permanent notice in Break-Out, Karl to arrange.

Correspondence: The annual NZART Branch circular: Membership list, Call Book update form, Examination supervisor application form and Candidates check form, Remits to be discussed etc..

A letter from NZART regarding the proposed Public liability insurance scheme. Email correspondence with ZL2DW as Branch 13 Secretary regarding QSL card handling. Email correspondence regarding donation to Branch 88, Tauranga Emergency Communications Group (TECG). Email correspondence with Lee regarding the club programme and the club project

Finance: Accounts for payment were presented by Wally for materials used for the ongoing refurbishment of the clubroom’s kitchen and bathroom. Payments were made for the club project.

Another reminder from our Treasurer that (our very minimal!) subs are now DUE!

General business: Dave ZL2DW explained the current QSL card distribution procedure. He also brought up the proposed joint public liability insurance scheme. NZART reports that the annual premium for the 9 participating branches would now be $ 275.14. No firm decision resulted from the following discussion. Lee has indicated that, due to ill health, he is no longer able to fulfill the requirements for Branch Examination Supervisor. Lee is presently in hospital, he expects ongoing treatment and recovery to pre-empt taking an active part in club activities for some time. Laurie to take over the club (antenna switch) project. Laurie also to seek interest from members to take over the Examination supervisor job. Wally reported on the search and costing for a replacement generator. The AREC account would be used for the purchase.

NZART AGM Remits: After establishing who out of those present were entitled to vote, which, due to some being affiliated to Branch 13 and some not being ‘financial’ with NZART, turned out to be a disappointing three, Laurie presented the three remits and recorded the vote. The outcome: Remit 1, one in favour, two against, Remit 2, one in favour, two against, Remit three (the amendment to the Constitution): one in favour, one against, one abstention. Stan moved and Wally seconded that our delegate (Laurie) is authorised to use his discretion to vote as he sees fit on the day.

The meeting closed 9:30pm.

Due to Lee’s incapacitation the scheduled DX-pedition video was replaced by ‘Show and Tell’.

Dave ZL2DW explained with diagrams the building and refining of a 160m half wave dipole across a gully (on his daughters farm). The antenna has an automatic tuner and works well on all bands except 80m. Karl presented his SDR receiver augmented with a 120MHz converter to bring in HF frequencies. Laurie, who does a fair bit of ‘hamming’ in the micro wave regions, presented his homebrew transverter which will turn a 2m transceiver into a 2.4GHz transceiver. Also a homebrew 2.4 GHZ loop yagi antenna, a piece of precision hardware with an estimated gain of 17 to 20 dB.

Best performance so far 300Km to Mt Egmont.

Karl, ZL1TJ Secretary

BAY BUZZ Publicity

The May – June 2015 issue of Bay Buzz did an article on a few local Hawke’s Bay clubs and groups. The Napier Amateur Radio Club was one of the 5 clubs featured. Laurie ZL2TC and Lee ZL2AL were interviewed and the you can see the writeup below. Great publicity for ham radio!

Front Cover

Front Cover

Page 1

Page 1

Laurie Operating ZL2GT, the Club Station

Laurie Operating ZL2GT, the Club Station

Page 4

Page 4

NARC Meeting April 1, 2015


Meeting Wednesday 1 April 2015 at the Clubrooms 

Chair: Laurie ZL2TC, the meeting started at 7:30 pm.

Apologies: ZL2GAZ, ZL2MO, ZL2LF, ZL2MQ, ZL2OC.

Present: Lee ZL2AL, Mike ZL2VM, Erroll ZL2IT, Revell ZL2SS, Peter ZL2CD, Dave ZL2DW, Blue ZL3TT, Rob ZL2US, Rob ZL2AN, Jan ZL2CZE, Stan ZL2ST and Karl ZL1TJ.

Minutes of the previous meeting were read and confirmed correct: ZL2TC, ZL2AL.

Arising: Dave ZL2DW referred to the NZART / AON public liability scheme. Branch 13 has received no further communication.

Correspondence: Notice from the Wanganui Radio Club that their annual sale will be held once again this year on the 2nd of May, starting 10am. Also a letter from the Napier City Council requesting that our entry in the Community info database be checked and updated if necessary.

Finance: Accounts for components for this year’s club project, a 4way remote antenna switch, were presented by Lee. Payment to reimburse expenses was agreed to at last month’s committee meeting.

General business: Laurie: the club’s first ‘Open Door’ social Sunday afternoon was held on March 15 and was attended by eight or nine members. The next (April) one will be on Sunday the 19th. Also, a clubrooms painting working bee will be held on Sunday the 12th starting 9am.

Dave ZL2DW reported that the urgent request for Break-Out copy did result in a March magazine with some really interesting articles. Pleas keep up the flow!

Revell mentioned the first Emergency Check In net held on March the 18th and wondered if any feedback has been received. The net was run by Laurie and Lee, many local hams and two ‘outsiders’ reported in. Generally the concept has been welcomed and the ECI net will continue to be held at 7:30pm on the 3rd Wednesday of the month on 670 and 3.615.

The meeting closed at 7:45pm.

Followed by a look into Civil Defence. Mike ZL2VM, who is not only our Amateur Radio Emergency Corps organiser but also plays an active role in CD, introduced Napier City Council Emergency Management Officer Mr. Marcus Hayes-Jones.

Marcus Hayes- Jones explains the inner workings of our CD setup and plans for the future.

Marcus Hayes-Jones explains the inner workings of our CD setup and plans for the future.

What followed was a detailed explanation of the structure, responsibilities and capabilities of the Council’s emergency response organisation. Though the Council’s budget is limited, communications equipment includes self contained portable VHF radio stations with substantial aerials, a trailer capable of accessing the Internet via satellite and a miniature linking device that allows ordinary smart phones to be used via satellite as well. Both voice and data transmissions are possible. Marcus answered a number of questions and in te process indicated that there is always a need for skilled radio people to make themselves available on a regular basis. He agreed that amateur radio initiatives such as the ECI net could have a place in the system and suggested that information such as station availability, equipment and capabilities could be recorded in the nation wide EMIS (Emergency Management Information System) operated by the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management. It was an interesting presentation.

Lee then briefly explained progress made on the antenna switch project, components purchased, instruction manual printed etc. All bar one have been sold! A brief working bee to assemble the kits will be coming up. Stan the treasurer will be smiling.

Karl ZL1TJ, Secretary NARC .

“Q” 4 Port Remote Antenna Switch Project

Each year the Napier Amateur Radio Club designs a club project for it’s Hawkes Bay members. Following on from the very successful “Q” VHF/UHF Antenna project in 2014 we are going to release the “Q” Remote 4 port antenna switch kit for 2015.

"Q" 4 Port Antenna Switch concept drawing

“Q” 4 Port Antenna Switch concept drawing

The project is a remote antenna switch allows you to have one run of coaxial cable from the shack to your multiple antenna setup rather than multiple runs of coax. Most hams have a Tribander, a few dipoles and/or loops and maybe a vertical. Running RG213 coax from all of them back into the shack is expensive and can cause RF coupling between unused cables. The modern approach is to switch the antennas remotely with a switch-box at the base of the tower or in the garage and control it from inside the shack. Some photos below:

Controller Box with LEDs and 5 Position switch

Controller Box with LEDs and 5 Position switch

The PCB showing the relays and wiring of the S)-239 sockets. The blue connector block on the lower right side of the board is connected to the 5 Pin DIN socket which controls the relays.

The PCB showing the relays and wiring of the S)-239 sockets. The blue connector block on the lower right side of the board is connected to the 5 Pin DIN socket which controls the relays.


Looking at the “business: side of the board. The SO-239 sockets fit through the weatherproof case to allow PL259 Coax plugs to screw on.

The “Q” 4 Port Antenna Switch kit set is supplied with a complete set of step by step instructions and the very highest quality components The kit complete with shack switch controller box and weatherproof outside relay enclosure box. Specifications below:

  • High quality European designed PCB
  • Input/output port isolation better than -69dB and loss is onlyl 0.05 dB at 28 Mhz
  • Designed for 1 – 30 Mhz. Higher frequencies may be switched with slightly higher losses.
  • Switch Relays are very high quality American designed Zettler relays with 20A contacts and 400VAC rating which will allow operation at 1.5KW CW/RTTY or 3000PEP power levels.
  • SO-239 socket connectors are teflon insulated with gold centre pin.
  • All hardware supplied including all screws and nuts etc
  • The Shack Control box has 5 different coloured LEDS which easily shows what antenna you are actually using.
  • 5 pin DIN sockets for power connections. CAT5 control cable may be used (not supplied)
  • 12 VDC at 500ma wall wart power supply (not supplied)
  • All parts supplied fully guaranteed for 1 year.
  • Charts showing Isolation and insertion losses are below”
    This shows the port isolation between antenna outpus

    This shows the port isolation between antenna output

    This shows the low insertion loss

    This shows the low insertion loss

Commercial antenna switches range imported into ZL from $240 (cheaper unit) to around $500 (high quality). The “Q” Remote antenna switch target price will be $150 NZD which represents great value.

There will only be a limited number of these kits available from June 1. If interested please contact Lee, ZL2AL, project co-ordinator at to register your interest.

73, Lee ZL2AL,

Napier  Amateur Radio Club