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WA3VJB

Joined: Wed, Nov 24th 2010, 16:05 Roles: N/A Moderates: N/A

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Topic Created Posts Views Last Activity
AM on HF - Are you with us ? Jul 26th 2011, 21:28 21 14,373 on 22/10/11
ARRL Politics Jul 26th 2011, 21:20 15 8,417 5 days, 4 hours ago

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What rigs do you use for AM operation and why do you like using AM? W1RFIAdmin 5 days, 4 hours ago
The presence of AM on HF has continued to grow in the dozen years since Ed Hare posted this topic. This allows a more comprehensive answer to Part 1 of his question.

The Icom IC-7300 has become the most popular radio logged among hundreds of operators in the nationwide AM Rally that takes place early in the year.

The Yaesu FTDX10 draws consistently good reaction among AMers as they welcome newcomers who select the mode and try out this transceiver.

The Elecraft KX3 did a firmware upgrade which added AM to transmit and receive, encouraging licensed radio hobbyists to try the mode on transmit as well as in SWL activity.

The Anan, Flex, and Sun SDR transceivers all produce outstanding AM on transmit and receive, according to those of us who have worked the stations and may own these rigs ourselves.

There today is a commercially built, quarter kilowatt AM transmitter for 40-80-160 meters called the "Super Senior" from Index Labs that has sold dozens of examples to AM enthusiasts.

Reception of AM activity on HF has been greatly enhanced by internet-based SDR receivers such as the constellations offered by the KiwiSDR and WebSDR platforms.

The ARRL has embraced the activity of AM on HF with a showcase restoration of a retired broadcast transmitter now on 75 and 160 meters; a QST Product Review of the Super Senior, and the dedication to AM of the weeknight voice bulletin outlet of W1AW on 7290Kc.

Because of these developments, we in the AM community seldom hear judgments of people not using "vintage" vacuum tube rigs to join us on the bands.

Advice and fellowship exist among several internet pages on the topic, including two on Facebook, one on QRZ.com, and two independent websites, amfone.net, and amwindow.org.

I help manage this one:

www.facebook.com/groups/amodgroup/

Mod-U-Later

Paul/VJB
ARRL Politics WA3VJB 5 days, 4 hours ago
There's a new forum on QRZ.com entitled the ARRL Governance & Membership Discussion

At the premiere of this forum on The Zed, I wonder if it would presently be worth our approaching each Division Director, along with selected paid staff in Newington, and directly asking for their committment to participate on the record, as an official representative of the ARRL.

Something tells me the League's Board of Directors would demur, and that we would get negative responses along the lines of "we have never done it that way," and "why should we spend time on non-subscribers?" and maybe even "the system we have has worked just fine."

One way to encourage their participation would be to convince them of what's in it for them. Reaching beyond the subscriber base would allow League officials to demonstrate the merit of the ARRL's resources, and perhaps win new members from among the 80 percent of U.S. licensees who today decline to sign up in support.

Another way to encourage participation by officials in an independent forum like this one is to point out the risk of their NOT taking part. Things are arguably not going well for the ARRL, financially and politically, and I believe it has reached a point where their officialdom really must try approaches they would have found risky and unnecessary in years past.

I post this on the ARRL forum because I've never seen participation by any official with what Ed calls the "professional responsibility" in the subject area of League policy.

Although others responding had anticipated rapid popularity of the ARRL Forum, it has not happened in the dozen years since it was created.

Please let's consider expanding the avenues of input that may be expressed by active, concerned licensees who want the best for the hobby and the ARRL.

AM on HF - Are you with us ? WA3VJB on 27/7/11
Thanks for reconsidering, and believe me, the "softer" stance such as you've taken is appreciated on the air, too.

I encounter folks who have no interest in AM, and have either heard about or directly carried a chip on their shoulder about our part of the hobby, for whatever reason historically.

When I compare it, in a discussion to the "old car hobby," the analogy seems to apply where older cars have their own merit as a snapshot in time. And as with vintage radios, working on them, using, and enjoying them, can build confidence and understanding for interest toward other, more contemporary projects.
AM on HF - Are you with us ? WA3VJB on 26/7/11
Please help establish through your responses whether the ARRL should place a greater emphasis on the activity of AM on HF.

A survey among three League regions found nearly 20 percent of the respondents listed AM among their activities on HF.

The survey, conducted by regional Directors, was never published nor distributed widely. The ARRL's Forum is another opportunity.
ARRL Politics WA3VJB on 26/7/11
I am pleased that this forum has been created. It has the potential for the League's administration to participate in public discussion of ways the ARRL could improve what it provides to the hobby.

Having read the entire list of restrictions (the "Rules"), they seem to offer protection, not punishment, for views that dissent from prevailing opinions in Newington. This forum can be a place to challenge, re-direct, and help shape the promotion of the hobby, regulatory activism, and the publishing emphasis at the ARRL.

Ideally, because it is open to public scrutiny, this forum will undercut the ability for individuals within the League's political structure to create negative, internal agendas that may not deserve the support of the greater Amateur community.

One example is the widely-reviled Segregation by Bandwidth controversy that came out of Newington a few years ago. Propagated chiefly by one belligerent (and now former) ARRL staffer, the regulatory proposal was withdrawn from the FCC before the agency could act, after the League's attorney found a variety of flaws in his document, and after comments filed on the FCC docket ran opposed on a ratio of about 6 to 1.

A forum like this could have documented the opposition to the League's scheme while it was still being pushed internally. A ranking ARRL official acknowledged that most of those who responded to a poll did not support the proposal, yet it was pushed into the FCC anyway.

I was among those opposed, because my part of the hobby was not protected from the potential effects of the ARRL's scheme.

I first joined the ARRL in 1973, and in all the time since then, have tried with limited success to convince those running the League about the need to treat more even-handedly the activity of AM on HF.

There are signs of progress, both in the magazine, QST, and in the receptiveness of the League's regional Directors to acknowledge our part of the hobby.

The AM Community is where thousands of active, concerned licensees form a vibrant, technically interested fa├žet that is very much in keeping with the basic mission of the Amateur Service.

As a point of progress to the League's credit, several Regional Directors in recent years conducted a survey of their constituents, and nearly 20 percent of the respondents listed AM among their activities on HF.

Yet, we do not see a commensurate level of coverage of the activity of AM in QST and other publications that the League produces about the variety of activities we all enjoy.

So, best wishes to an open and respectful discussion of League politics in all forms, including those like myself who wish to establish the merit of an area within the hobby that has been neglected, overlooked, or otherwise not included to the extent warranted by the level of participation found.

Paul/VJB

"Enjoying vintage AM on shortwave hobby radio"

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