Napier ARC meeting 3 August 2016

MINUTES OF THE NAPIER AMATEUR RADIO CLUB

Meeting on Wednesday 3rd August at the Clubrooms 123 Latham Street

Chair: Wally ZL2MO, the meeting started at 7:30 pm.

Present: Laurie ZL2TC, Revell ZL2SS, Dave ZL2DW, Paul ZL2HB, Bert ZL2OC, Blue ZL3TT, Stan ZL2ST, Michael ZL2MY, Rob ZL2US, Peter ZL2HM, Dave ZL2MQ, Stu McLeod and Karl ZL1TJ

Apologies: ZL2CD, ZL2DC, ZL2VM, ZL2IT, ZL2LF.

Minutes of previous meeting: Read and confirmed to be correct ZL3TT, ZL2MY.

Arising: Our new neighbours, the ‘Men’s Shed’ are ‘de facto’ represented by Rob ZL2US who is a Men’s Shed member. Rob will investigate the possibility of future cooperation. Dave ZL2DW reminded us that BreakOut articles are needed from Napier ARC members. Closeoff date: the 14th.

Correspondence: Email exchanges with 2DW and 2TC regarding beacon and repeater trustee status. To be discussed in General Business.

Finance: No major transactions reported by treasurer Stan.

General Business: Laurie announced his resignation as Trustee for the Club’s ZL2MHB beacons and the three repeaters: 147.250 Taraponui , 434.050 Taraponui, and 434.850 Mt Erin. Dave ZL2MQ was asked and agreed to take on this responsibility. He was duly appointed, NZART and Call Book compiler Peter Mulhare to be informed of the change without delay.

Rob 2US reported that the Branch 13 recent junk sale was, though still financially helpful, somewhat ‘overdone’, too much junk and tight pockets. A different format may be needed.

A reminder from Laurie that the annual Hamilton Junk sale is on August 13th.

Paul ZL2HB expressed interest in taking part in the annual Fieldday contest, primarily to learn and experiment with temporary aerials and improvised conditions. Rob stated that a contest is normally entered into to win and as such there is little opportunity for experimentation. Antenna’s are usually prepared beforehand and installed in the hours before the actual contest. Both Stan 2ST and Michael 2MY, both seasoned contest operators, offered to include Paul in the next contest’s ‘setting up’.

The meeting closed at 8:15pm.

Followed by Dave ZL2DW’s discourse on repeaters and related topics.

Dave started by reminding us that signal reports involving repeater links are relatively subjective. The S meter will indicate repeater strength, not the input station’s strength. If a report is requested, ignore the meter and just evaluate the signal by ear. Laurie added that poor reception can just as easily be the result of inadequate receiving gear as the result of poor transmission. Of course!

After discussing basic repeater function Dave explained the more complex arrangements at the 9175 repeater and HF accessor site specifically to questions from Revell ZL2SS. The arrangement is used for the weekly Sunday morning combined branches net when both UHF 9175 and 3.615 HF can be used to participate. Next another look at the National System and how Hawke’s Bay is linked to this. Remember that the longer distances involve many ‘hops’, e.g. 8 to Dunedin, and it takes time to put the repeaters in transmit mode. Hence press the transmit button and wait a few seconds before speaking. The IRLP set up came next and the complex pathways involved. Again patience is a virtue for similar reasons.

Dave finished off by showing the original 670 repeater, locally constructed with the assistance of the Hamilton VHF group and active from 1976. Replaced with more interference proof commercial gear in 1993. Original cavity filters built by Erroll ZL2IT are still in use and have proved to be very stable. Laurie took over and showed the original 725 repeater installed 1981 and replaced with Tait gear in 1995. The extreme weather conditions at Taraponui are a problem as antennas and support structures suffer from both ice and wind and need regular fixing, usually under bad conditions.

Dave requested his epitaph to read: “Remember the icy storms I suffered for Hawke’s Bay Hams”. (…. ..)

Karl ZL1TJ, Secretary Branch 25.