TRAINING EXERCISE, 22 April 2017: We have many new MARC members,
newly licensed persons who need additional help, training, experience in learning additional amateur
radio skills. We have a number of long-time MARC members who can help to train, to pass on skills.
My file: Ex2 22 April
We should focus on basics, familiarization without any degree of pressure.
Training should be done with a minimum of resources, limited travel & setup / breakdown difficulties.
Training objectives should be achievable in a few hours time.
No “stress” or testing; no requirement to use generators, set up jury-rigged antennas, etc.
We operate out of fixed-site QTHs in a comfortable environment.
Demonstrate, teach the newer people things we could not focus on in basic licensing classes.
Let newer people see & operate your rigs, your radio shack setup, explain to them your choices.
Let everyone have some practice using the various
digital modes. Explain capabilities, limitations,
costs, equipment requirements.
Test, among ourselves, our home rigs &
antennas to determine what we can & cannot do
communicating with one another at fairly close distances.
Suggest all “hosts” try to use an NVIS antenna as part of their operation.
Focus on 40m and 80m HF bands so that newly
licensed people (primarily) can get some experience
using these bands/modes with help of some “elmers” who have more equipment, experience.
You could also switch to maybe 20m band to show what is taking place there on a Saturday morning
but because of the short distance between ourselves, I recommend we avoid trying to
communicate between ourselves using 20m. Use our available VHF/UHF repeaters to coordinate
among ourselves to change
bands or frequencies, to work our way through our list of planned events.
Suggested “Plan”: begin setup at maybe 8-9 AM, to be operational by
10 AM; operate for maybe
3 hours until about 1 PM; breakdown. Those who wish can move to a site for mid-afternoon
meal / critique at an agreed-on site, maybe about 3 PM.
Who wants to
participate? who is willing to lead efforts at selected sites?
Work out the details of
who goes where, what each person need to bring or contribute.
“Host”: a better equipped, more experienced “elmer”
willing to accept, to teach a small group
of newer licensees at his/her QTH. “Host” provides the site, the equipment, the antennas,
seating/table space, etc. Each site needs to field a powered HF rig, a Winlink Pactor or
Winmor capable TNC, an external sound card modem (or a computer with an adequate
sound card) for assorted digital modes, a computer with appropriate software, a separate
VHF/UHF radio for coordinating among sites, and antenna systems capable of HF and VHF/UHF.
“Hosts” will operate as “control operators” at their respective QTHs so that they can
Technician licensed operators to run rigs using a variety of bands, modes under their supervision.
“Hosts” need to prepare ahead of time some short
templates messages so that they can be
used for transmissions in the various modes.
Suggest that for ease of operation, each site should operate HF under the call sign of the
“host” as the “control operator” rather than having people operate under their own callsigns.
Modes: We need to agree on a list of modes that each
site can handle and that we can use
to communicate with one another.
Suggested: PSK-31, MT-63, Winlink Pactor or Winmor, SSB and FM voice.
“Net control” guides the overall sequence, the tempo of the
training but we allow the “hosts”
sufficient time to demonstrate, train, assist the people at their sites. We will use our VHF
repeaters to coordinate, to pace the exercise.
“Free time”: Allow “hosts” some open time during the
exercise to train, focus on training,
or modes or subjects of their choice depending on what they see as needed by newer
people at their site. You might allow people to try to make some longer distance
QSOs on using digital modes like PSK-31.
Net Control: Eric (KZ5ED) and Steve (KI4ZUI) will jointly
run a net control at one of our
QTHs. We will use two HF rigs, one running a mode while the other is being set up for the
next mode. We will use our repeaters (or cell phones as backup) to try to regulate the
tempo of the exercise. We will have some “canned” or templated messages prepared to
initiate exchanges, and we will find & announce open frequencies that we can use.
If “hosts” want to slow things down or operate on their own for awhile, we can do that.