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PL NET 80 meter morning net. 3.787

Posted by VA3MPM on July 20, 2013 at 9:35 AM Comments comments (0)

VE2RWT controls the PL  net on 3,787 every morning at 8:00 AM eastern time. Drop in and say hello.  You'll find quite a few familiar 3730 voices.



VE3ORF 3730 Group FIELD DAY 2013

Posted by Darrell VA3RDC on June 21, 2013 at 10:20 AM Comments comments (0)

VE3ORF 3730 Group FIELD DAY 2013   

 OBJECTIVE:  To work as many stations as possible on any and all amateur bands (excluding the 60, 30, 17, and 12-meter bands) and to learn to operate in abnormal situations in less than optimal conditions. Field Day is open to all amateurs in the areas covered by the ARRL/RAC Field Organizations and countries within IARU Region 2.

 WHERE:  1215 Whitney Road, Kemptville, Ontario

Visitors welcome.

 WHEN: Friday, June 21 – Set-up around 2pm (volunteers needed)

Saturday, June 22 – Operating Starts at 2pm & Barbeque around 5 pm (volunteers/family/friends welcome)

Sunday June 23 - Teardown after 2pm (volunteers needed)

We will be operating under the call sign VE3ORF, Class 4A ON, ONE (Section 1 Ontario East)

Hope to see you there and or work you on the bands.

Thank you,

Darrell Cooper VA3RDC


VE3ORF 3730 Group


Exam questions undergo an update

Posted by Barry Comer VA3PUX on April 30, 2013 at 10:15 AM Comments comments (0)

The Canadian Amateur Radio exam questions are undergoing an update.

More information is available at:

Volunteers needed - Ham radio operators - Lanark Highlands Forest Rally - Sat May 4

Posted by VA3JME Jamie on April 22, 2013 at 8:25 PM Comments comments (0)


I am trying to get more radio volunteers for our Rally on May 4th. It's a great opportunity to see an exciting motor-sports event, and maybe even win some prizes.


Prizes you say? Yep! You could win a Kayak from Clearwater Designs (I did 4 years ago!) or $100 gift certificate from Durham Radio! The Durham Radio prize is limited to hams only, so your odds are pretty good.


You can learn more about the rally at


If you want to volunteer, go to and sign up. Be sure you put in the form under special skills that you're a Ham, and put your call sign in.


I appreciate anyone who can volunteer at this short notice!


Jamie Cashin


136.5 Tone

Posted by VA3MPM on April 21, 2013 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)

The 2 meter side of ORF is back on the 136.5 Tone.

Cheers to all.

New VE3ORF Repeaters

Posted by VA3JME Jamie on April 2, 2013 at 7:50 PM Comments comments (0)

We are pleased to report that the "VE3ORF Group of repeaters" is now operational.


We have added to the existing 146.850 2M a wide range of repeaters.

You can now access 146.850, 444.550, 224.720, 29.620, and a high range 900 MHZ repeater.


All of these are linked together.

 146.850  Neg offset  136.5 tone


444.550 positive offset  tone is 136.5


224.720 Neg offset requires no tone


The 10 meter repeater is  29.620 neg offset  tone 136.5

Tone 136.5 until we get up to the site to turn on the 10 transmitter.


We encourage you to send us reports.




The VE3ORF / 3730 Group.

Kenneth Pulfer, VE3PU (SK)

Posted by Ed VA3ES on April 2, 2013 at 4:00 PM Comments comments (0)

Kenneth Pulfer, VE3PU (SK)


It is with regret and deepsadness we advise of the passing of  Ken Pulfer,VE3PU, at his home in Ottawa on Easter Day after a short illness.  Ken was 80 years old.


As we all know, Ken was a remarkable gentleman and well respected for histireless dedication to the promotion of the amateur radio service through hiswork over the years serving Radio Amateurs of Canada and the InternationalAmateur Radio Union. 


The ARRL has already written and posted a tribute to Ken; it can be read at :


Ken's obituary was posted today in the Ottawa Citizen newspaper and appears at:


According to his wishes, there will be no visitation or service.

Thanks to Norm Rashleigh, VE3LC, for this notice.

Solar Cycle 24 May Have “Double Peaks"

Posted by Darrell VA3RDC on March 31, 2013 at 10:55 PM Comments comments (0)


According to NASA, the current solar cycle -- Solar Cycle 24 -- should hit its “solar max” sometime in this year, but so far, solar activity has been relatively low. According to an article by NASA’s Dr Tony Phillips, this period of quiet has led some observers to wonder if forecasters missed the mark. But solar physicist Dean Pesnell of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center has a different explanation: “This is solar maximum. But it looks different from what we expected because it is double peaked.” Pesnell noted similarities between the current cycle and Solar Cycle 14, which happened between February 1902 and August 1913 and experienced a double peak. If the two cycles are in fact twins, he said that “it would mean one peak in late 2013 and another in 2015.”


Solar activity tends to swing back and forth: At one end of a solar cycle, there is a quiet time with few sunspots and flares, while at the other end, solar max brings high sunspot numbers and solar storms. Even so, astronomers -- who have been counting sunspots for centuries -- have noticed that a solar cycle is not perfectly regular, with the swing in sunspot counts taking anywhere from 10-13 years to complete. In addition, the amplitude of each cycle can and does vary, with some solar maxima being very weak (such as Solar Cycle 6), while others can be very strong (such as Solar Cycle 19).


“The last two solar maxima, around 1989 and 2001, had not one but two peaks,” Pesnell explained. Phillips’ article explained how “solar activity went up, dipped and then resumed, performing a mini-cycle that lasted about two years.” Pesnell said that the same thing could be happening now. Even though sunspot counts jumped in 2011 and dipped in 2012, he said he expects them to rebound again in 2013: “I am comfortable in saying that another peak will happen in 2013 and possibly last into 2014.”


According to Phillips, solar activity in the Sun’s hemispheres does not always peak at the same time. “In the current cycle, the south has been lagging behind the north,” he said. He explained that if a second peak occurs, it will likely feature the Sun’s southern hemisphere displaying a surge in activity.


Pesnell is a member of the NOAA/NASA Solar Cycle Prediction Panel, a group of solar physicists that assembled in 2006 and 2008 to forecast the next solar max. “At that time, the Sun was experiencing its deepest minimum in nearly a hundred years,” Phillips’ article explained. “Sunspot numbers were pegged near 0 and x-ray flare activity flat-lined for months at a time.” The panel issued the following statement at the time, explaining its prediction:


“The Solar Cycle 24 Prediction Panel has reached a consensus. The panel has decided that the next solar cycle (Cycle 24) will be below average in intensity, with a maximum sunspot number of 90. Given the date of solar minimum and the predicted maximum intensity, solar maximum is now expected to occur in May 2013. Note, this is not a unanimous decision, but a supermajority of the panel did agree.”


But according to Pesnell -- given the lack of solar activity in February 2013 -- a maximum in May now seems unlikely. “We may be seeing what happens when you predict a single amplitude and the Sun responds with a double peak,” he said. -- Thanks to NASA, Dr Tony Phillips and [email protected] for the information

Bob Bruninga, WB4APR, Takes APRS Underground

Posted by Darrell VA3RDC on March 31, 2013 at 10:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Bob Bruninga, WB4APR, led a group of radio amateurs earlier this month to Mammoth Cave -- the world’s longest known cave system -- at Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky to test how the Automatic Packet Reporting System (APRS) can be used as a means to extend radio communications underground. “When used underground, VHF and UHF radios can only work within a few hundred feet of each other and only when in the line of sight of another radio,” Bruninga explained. “This makes routine use of these radios of little value when underground; however, when APRS radios act as packet digipeaters, these few hundreds of feet can be extended by an order of magnitude.” Bruninga, a senior research engineer at the US Naval Academy, developed APRS as a global, on-air protocol for supporting handheld position reporting and text messaging via VHF radio.


Bruninga’s team used 14 APRS radios to establish a network that provided real-time position and text message communications along a route nearly a mile long in the cave. “Cavers carried a cave map that had a latitude and longitude grid so that they could know their exact coordinates when manually entering their position into their handheld transceivers,” Bruninga said. “Texting via APRS provided communications end-to-end, and even included e-mail into the topside global APRS system.” The team set up the APRS network in what Bruninga called “large subway-sized cave passages” that were 30-50 feet wide and 10-20 feet tall.


Bruninga said that extending the communications system along the cave was easy: “We would walk until we lost the signal, then back up 20-30 feet and set a digipeating APRS handheld transceiver on a rock and then keep going, repeating the process. This proved to be far more convenient than current methods, such as dragging along a World War II-era twisted pair phone line and Army field phones, or using HF and LF systems with their large antennas.”


After going over the data from the cave test, Bruninga found two interesting facts: Even with the average link between each radio at 450 feet, UHF outperformed VHF by about 13 percent. In addition, power did not make much of a difference, with the APRS-compatible handheld transceivers performing as well as several portable 10 W mobile radios. “One of the advantages of using UHF for this APRS network was that individual links in other caves can just as easily be pre-tested by cavers without an Amateur Radio license by using an inexpensive Family Radio Service (FRS) radio,” Bruninga noted. “This way, cavers can plan and individually test the topology of an APRS network before actually gathering the APRS equipment and setting up the actual expedition.”


Bruninga said that APRS radios bring “a new range multiplier dimension to in-cave communication. In the past, a paltry few-hundred foot VHF/UHF radio range has not been impressive to cavers, but now with APRS, they can be linked up to 14 times in series, demonstrating some real potential for ham radio caving support. This is especially true when some of those few-hundred foot distances may take an hour or more to crawl, whereas APRS can get the message through at the speed of light.”