QST NFL for March 2021 is on the NFL Website

QST NFL March 2021 (<- this is the link)

What’s Inside….

Page   2       Field Day 2021

                      QCWA Scholarships Available                                   

Page    3       Whirlwind Bloom Emergency Exercise  

Page   4       Loften HS School Club Roundup              

Page   5       NOFARS Jacksonville Area News                               

Page   6       Five Flags ARA Begins Spring Term       

Page   7       Duval ARES Winter Field Day

                     Lake Monroe ARS Special Event

Page   8       New Portable Setup

Page   11     Winter field Day with the New Portable Setup

Page   13     Santa Rosa County Activities

Page   15     Setting up a VHF/UHF Winlink in Your County

Page   18     Friendship ARC & QCWA Chapter 62

Marty Brown, N4GL

Editor, QST NFL

Exam Coming

There will be an amateur radio exam on Monday, March 15th at 6:30 pm.   start, at Live Oak Baptist Church, likely Building D, 4565 Live Oak Church Road, in Crestview, FL 32539. Please arrive by 6:00 pm or a little after.  The fee is $10.00 cash, check or Money Order; if writing a check, make it out to WCARS/VEC.

Unlicensed applicants must have an FRN (Federal Registration Number); Social Security Numbers are no longer allowed.  Obtain your FRN before the exam, from the FCC site at https://www.fcc.gov/wireless/systems-utilities/universal-licensing-system (New User Registration link)
Licensed applicants must provide a photocopy of your license that will be surrendered to the exam team!

Masks will be required for examiners and applicants, and we will adhere to the CDC’s six-foot social distancing recommendation.  If you have a special need physically, let us know early, and we will do our best to accommodate you.

Applicants must preregister to me directly, or send a note to me via the club website CONTACT US tab at W4AAZ.com. 

YL Net Forming

The first area net by women for women, the Sunday Evening YL net! Even if you don’t have your license, if you know another ham you can join the net using third party traffic.

This net is hosted on the K4SRC 146.700 repeater which covers Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, and Escambia counties. The repeater is also linked to the KN4JEA Jay repeater which covers Escambia County, AL. You can also join via EchoLink on K4SRC-4 or AllStar Link Node 515591.

WinLink Hands-On and Tailgater

Curious how to send emails over the air without the internet? This event is for you! We’ll have several stations setup on HF, VHF, and UHF to help you understand how to send emails with Winlink. Have some gear you’d like to sell? Great! We’ll also have a free tailgater event if you’d like to setup or browse. This event isn’t affiliated with any club or group and is open to EVERYONE! Ham license testing will also be available at 9:00AM. Thanks to Bob-W5CL for allowing us the use of his space and the Milton Amateur Radio Club for providing the license testing.

NOARC Remote Classes for the General License

Michael Behr, W4BZM

The North Okaloosa Amateur Radio Club (NOARC) will hold classes for the General license beginning in January 2021. Classes will be held remotely, via the Zoom application. Our current intention is to hold classes from 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM (with breaks) Central Time on the following dates in 2021:
January 25
February 1, 8, 22
March 1, 8
Mach 15 – tentative test under WCARS VEC

We will be using the ARRL General Class License Manual, 9th Edition. A Zoom account will be required, available free from zoom.us.

NOARC’s home location is in the Florida panhandle, but during a previous
Technician class, we had students from out of state (Alabama) and in other
time zones (Tampa area). So don’t let geographic separation be a limiting factor.

Interested in participating in the classes? Please contact one of the following instructors prior to the signup deadline of Thursday, 07 January 2021.

Mike, W4BZM w4bzm@arrl.net
Bruce, KA5DLV badams138@yahoo.com

FCC Reduces Proposed Amateur Radio Application Fee to $35


The FCC has agreed with ARRL and other commenters that its proposed $50 fee for certain amateur radio applications was “too high to account for the minimal staff involvement in these applications.” In a Report and Order (R&O), released on December 29, the FCC scaled back to $35 the fee for a new license application, a special temporary authority (STA) request, a rule waiver request, a license renewal application, and a vanity call sign application. All fees are per application. There will be no fee for administrative updates, such as a change of mailing or email address.

This fall, ARRL filed comments in firm opposition to the FCC proposal to impose a $50 fee on amateur radio license and application fees and urged its members to follow suit.

As the FCC noted in its R&O, although some commenters supported the proposed $50 fee as reasonable and fair, “ARRL and many individual commenters argued that there was no cost-based justification for application fees in the Amateur Radio Service.” The fee proposal was contained in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in MD Docket 20-270, which was adopted to implement portions of the “Repack Airwaves Yielding Better Access for Users of Modern Services Act” of 2018 — the so-called “Ray Baum’s Act.”

“After reviewing the record, including the extensive comments filed by amateur radio licensees and based on our revised analysis of the cost of processing mostly automated processes discussed in our methodology section, we adopt a $35 application fee, a lower application fee than the Commission proposed in the NPRM for personal licenses, in recognition of the fact that the application process is mostly automated,” the FCC said in the R&O. “We adopt the proposal from the NPRM to assess no additional application fee for minor modifications or administrative updates, which also are highly automated.”

The FCC said it received more than 197,000 personal license applications in 2019, which includes not only ham radio license applications but commercial radio operator licenses and General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS) licenses.

The FCC turned away the arguments of some commenters that the FCC should exempt amateur radio licensees. The FCC stated that it has no authority to create an exemption “where none presently exists.”

The FCC also disagreed with those who argued that amateur radio licensees should be exempt from fees because of their public service contribution during emergencies and disasters.

“[W]e we are very much aware of these laudable and important services amateur radio licensees provide to the American public,” the FCC said, but noted that specific exemptions provided under Section 8 of the so-called “Ray Baum’s Act” requiring the FCC to assess the fees do not apply to amateur radio personal licenses. “Emergency communications, for example, are voluntary and are not required by our rules,” the FCC noted. “As we have noted previously, ‘[w]hile the value of the amateur service to the public as a voluntary noncommercial communications service, particularly with respect to providing emergency communications, is one of the underlying principles of the amateur service, the amateur service is not an emergency radio service.’”

The Act requires that the FCC switch from a Congressionally-mandated fee structure to a cost-based system of assessment. The FCC proposed application fees for a broad range of services that use the FCC’s Universal Licensing System (ULS), including the Amateur Radio Service, which had been excluded previously. The 2018 statute excludes the Amateur Service from annual regulatory fees, but not from application fees.

“While the Ray Baum’s Act amended Section 9 and retained the regulatory fee exemption for amateur radio station licensees, Congress did not include a comparable exemption among the amendments it made to Section 8 of the Act,” the FCC R&O explained.

The effective date of the fee schedule has not been established, but it will be announced at least 30 days in advance. The FCC has directed the Office of Managing Director, in consultation with relevant offices and bureaus, to draft a notice for publication in the Federal Register announcing when rule change(s) will become effective, “once the relevant databases, guides, and internal procedures have been updated.”


QST NFL December 2020

What’s Inside….Page   2      

Mysteries of HF Radio & Statewide Nets, Part 2
Page   4       SEC Message
Page   5       Five Flags Completes Fall Term
Page   5        NOARC Remote Classes for General License
Page   6       Santa Rosa County ARES Activities  
Page   7       Alachua County General Class Review
Page   8       QRP Labs 50-Watt HF Amplifier
Page   9       Improved 49:1 End-fed Half-wave Balun        
Page  10      Trailer Hitch Mount HF Antenna Testing, Part 2

Send January 2021 input to n4gl.marty@gmail.com


Marty Brown, N4GL

Editor, QST NFL

Election Results

At the Annual Meeting of the club on 11/12, incumbent President Bob Murphy, KI4MEU, was re-elected for another two year term. Bob Hurley, KN4UDT, was elected Treasurer for the same term, starting January 1.

Please congratulate, and work positively with the new officers and the existing officers. The other “returning” officers are Vice-President Ron Mahn, KI5FR, and Secretary Ralph Zecco, KM4JJS.

Exam Results from the 11/07/2020 Test

Matthew Colucci, an associate of Jesse Peters, passed his Technician license and is now KO4JBC; Don Boaz, KD4BWN, upgraded to General from Technician; Joseph Hughes, KO4FNK, also upgraded from Technician to General, plus brought donuts for the group; and Bob Raffety, N1KRE, took his last exam – going from General to Extra.  You will recognize the last three as NOARC club members.  Hopefully Matthew will join us.

Thanks to Live Oak Baptist Church allowing us to test at their facility; thanks to the four VEs – we are always looking for more volunteer examiners – it is easy to get credentials, and minimal time commitment; thanks to the applicants for showing up on time (we actually started five minutes early) and showing that you all were prepared. 

Enjoy your new privileges!

Live Oak Baptist Church Fall Festival – Thanks To All

 A huge shout out and thanks to everyone from NOARC who supported the Live Oak Baptist Church (LOBC) Fall Festival on 31 October.  The LOBC have been outstanding hosts to the North Okaloosa Amateur Radio Club (NOARC) over the years and this is one of the ways we try to pay back their hospitality. 

Because of COVID, the event was much smaller this year than usual, which was good because we had a little less space to park than usual.  However our lead, Joe KN4UDS packed those cars in like sardines…safely but tight enough to have plenty of space available.  We had more folks then we needed for parking the cars, but having those vests all over the place showed how serious we are about assisting the church. 

This year we had lights, based on ideas from Joe KN4UDS, Rob KM4SPJ, and Bruce KA5DLV. This was key to a safer event this year.  While we have had no accidents in the past, the lights made it easier for walkers to watch their step and drivers to see walkers a little better.  Yet more improvement.  Thanks everyone for joining us this year.

Our Crew!

Joe KN4UDS (Co-Lead)Ted KM4SRO & Sue
Ted KM4SRO & SueRich N4DPM
Craig KK4WDQ & JuanitaRandy KN4OPX
Bruce KA5DLVIan White

Ron Mahn KI5FR