MARA W1/GaZette


In This Issue...

Mohawk Club in the Web 1

Bids on W1LUG rigs 2

October Meeting Report 3

LEMA Communication Notes 5

From the President 6

Worcester EM Meeting 6

Old Timer’s Lunch 7

Morse Code Petitions 7

California Fire Disaster Support 8

Contributors To This Issue:



Next Meeting

Wednesday, November 12


Fitchburg Central Fire Station


Mohawk Club makes the Web

Our friends to the west in the Mohawk Amateur Radio Club are highlighted in an article appearing on the ARRL Web site. The occasion for the article was the Athol Lions Club Haunted Hayride on October 17, at which the Club provided radio communications support as well as some added entertainment.

Mark N1ZYG provided the photograph on the left of Paul W1SEX (are we sure this is in costume?).

MARA members Bill N1UZ, Nancy KB1KEF and Gary K1YTS helped at this event.

The Lions Club issued certificates of appreciation to the Mohawk ARC and to MARA at their volunteer appreciation dinner on November 4. Gary K1YTS accepted the certificate on behalf of MARA.

The short article can be found on the ARRL Web site at


Sealed Bids Being Accepted

The family of Waldo W1LUG has donated Waldo’s station to MARA. The members at the October meeting voted to take sealed bids for the items to be opened at the December meeting.

Gary K1YTS provided the following list and description of the items available:

The equipment may be viewed on appointment, or for more information regarding said equipment, contact Gary Busler K1YTS.

To bid enclose (in a sealed envelope) your name and contact information. Clearly indicate the Lot number and bid price.

This information should be submitted to Gordon LaPoint, N1MGO, Treasurer on or before the December meeting. Submitted bids will be opened and awarded at the December meeting. Payment will be expected to be made in full on delivery or pickup before the January 2004 meeting, or the lot will be given to the next highest bidder.

Lot 1) YAESU 757 GX with power supply

condition: Good, with manual and microphone.

age: approximately 20 years (does not hold memory)

Lot 2) KENWOOD TS 700A

condition: Poor.

age: approximately 30 years (it is an all mode 2M transceiver) description: Noisy controls, inoperative VFO, no XTAL control, no tone or repeater offset and a defective hand mic cord.

Lot 3) MFJ 749A Antenna tuner

condition: Unknown.

age: approximately 10 + years (mechanically clean)

Lot 4) Old manual key, J38 style

condition: Clean Brass.

Lot 5) Old tubes

quantity: 15

Lot 6) Old books and magazines (including 1938 Radio Shack catalog,world atlas, and 1996 repeater directory) age: 1931 to present

Lot 7) Galaxy II frequency display, (counter), Digital Alarm Clock,Pocket Knife

Lot 8) Residue Any and or all lots not bid on, (leftovers).


Watt’s Happening

Sundays, 0830 local 3937 Western Mass Emergency Net.

Alternate frequency is 3942 in case of QRN, QRM, or frequency in-use.

Also a good idea to scan up and down 10kHz if you cannot find the net.

Sundays, 0900 local 145.45- Montachusett Emergency Net

Tuesdays, 2030 local 145.37- Templeton Emergency Net

Wednesdays, 2100 local 28.341 Harvard Repeater Club

10 meter sideband net "Activity Night"

Nightly, 2100 local 146.97- Central Mass Traffic Net

Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays 1800 local 3942 MHz Western Mass Traffic Net (phone)

Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays 1900 local 3562 MHz Western Mass Traffic Net (cw, slow)

First Monday, 1900 local 3943, 7245 RACES Net

First Wednesday, 2000 local 3915 K1ARC Red Cross Net


For Sale

Cushcraft 215WB 2meter ant, 10-15-20 meter Butternut ant and 30 foot

Rohn 6 tower with Alliance rotor HD73 with cables also 11 ele 2 meter

beam. best offer. also AEA Morse Machine for 100.00 Mint

condition. All in great shape! Selling home. WB1HIB


October Meeting

de Ralph KD1SM

The October MARA meeting was called to order at 1940 on Wednesday, October 8 by President Gary K1YTS.

Members present were Gary K1YTS, Gordon N1MGO, Paul KD1YH, Jerry AA2T, Norm W1BYH, Charlie KT1I, Paul N1QDX, Bill N1UZ, Tom K1JHC, Norm W1LXE and Ralph KD1SM. Marge Burke, daughter of W1LUG and Bob Montemerlo KB1JZU were present as guests.

Gary announced that Marge Burke brought Waldo W1LUG’s rigs to make available to MARA members. Some items have been set aside to give to Waldo’s son, including a copy of his 1939, 1941, and 1947 Class B Amateur Radio Operator Licenses. It was moved and seconded that the Treasurer accept sealed bids from MARA members with the proceeds to be divided between MARA and Waldo’s family. The inventory will be printed in the November W1/GaZette and bids will be due by the December meeting (holiday party) and will be opened there. Motion carried.

Paul KD1YH announced that he put some new photographs on the MARA Web site.

Gary K1YTS reported that MARA last filed Commonwealth of Massachusetts Corporation filing fees on November of 2001. There is a risk that the Commonwealth might attach the funds remaining in the Treasury if the club abandons its Incorporation.

Treasurer’s Report: Gordon N1MGO reported a starting balance (September) of $371.49, dues income of $310, a donation of $75 from Doug Sargent KA1VV. Expenses were $24.49 and $27.20 for two Verizon phone bills leaving an ending balance of $629.80.

Correction to minutes of September meeting: Membership application from Nancy Richards KB1KEF of Ashby was accepted.

Membership application from Bob Montemerlo KB1JZU of Lunenburg was accepted.

Gordon N1MGO would like to update the Club brochure. The most recent version (created by Ralph KD1SM) was last updated in 1998. Gordon asks that suggestions and updates be sent to him.

The meeting adjourned at approximately 2020 to a tour of the new Fitchburg Fire Engine 3 led by Lt. Gregg Normandin.

above: MARA members admire the new Fitchburg Engine 3.

below: Lt. Normandin describes some of the special rescue equipment carried on Engine 3.

left: Norm W1BYH and Gary K1YTS confer with Marge Burke over W1LUG’s rigs.

above: Lt. Normandin shows off a thermal imaging camera.

below: the Pierce truck is capable of pumping 2000 gallons per minute.

above: the truck radios are capable of operating on all the fire frequencies used by the surrounding towns for mutual aid.


LEMA Communications Notes

de Jerry AA2T

Leominster OEM Comm unit meeting

Oct 21, 2003

Electrical work is now underway in EOC room and soon communications room and rest of the facility. Heating bids are complete and should be installed with in 3 weeks. Once the electrical is done, we can start to install additional security items, desk partitions, hung ceilings and floor tiles.

Once this is done, we will try to get office dispatch set up in communications room. Right now we cannot buy radio consoles but will look for something used for now.

IT group meeting decided to look at thin clients out and around the building, with back end server for mail and web server running Linux. All members will have internal email accounts (which can be forwarded externally). Will have one kiosk to check activity status on line.

We received a small bus for use in communication group. The seats are not in there right now but this will be second priority to working on the building. This bus is large enough for multiple people can stand up at one time with operating positions as well as 19" racks.


From the President’s Office

de Gary K1YTS

We have received a letter of resignation from Bill Wornham, NZ1D, resigning as Secretary for MARA. Bill is moving to 4 land. We should be hearing from him at his new QTH.

Other topics of discussion:

December meeting

Who would like to volunteer as new Secretary, pending next years’ election?

Licensing classes.

Access TV

We have had a discussion of other equipment that was donated to the club in the past. If you have that info please add it to the sealed bid in progress.


Notes from Worcester EM Meeting

On Thursday, October 9, Dick Bedard, Deputy Director, Worcester Emergency Management, hosted a meeting for all Emergency Management Directors and RACES Radio Officers from surrounding towns to hear about the progress that Worcester has made in its RACES program.

Chat WA1FIA attended the meeting. Jerry AA2T provided the following notes from a videotape of the meeting:

Tom Kinahan went through his RACES slide set that we have seen before. There is no appointment yet for Region 4 north yet.

Worcester mentioned that they had trouble with communications coverage of their shelters and schools. They now have 12 RACES stations in the Worcester area. Region 4 north still has no coordinator at this time. They reviewed the standard net operations and frequencies.

Steve Schwarm went through the ARES slide set and also showed his go kit and experiences learned from 9-11. He packed a AA Batt pack, NiMH, 2 antennas, duct tape, wd40, ID tags, notebook (pack inside a metal case), adapters, cables, soldering iron, tie wraps, laminated instructions for his radio, radios, repeater directory, poncho, snacks, water, matches, medicines, post it notes, pens, pencils, water-proof pencil, moist towelettes, inspect repellent, lip balm, small combo knife, fold up dual band quad antenna and an earpiece w/boom mic.



Old Timer’s Lunch

de Tom K1JHC

The "Old Timers" had their monthly luncheon meeting at Bickford’s Restaurant in Leominster on November 5th at 12:45 PM. Members present were Norm W1LXE, Roy W1OOY, Tom K1JHC, Howard W1TQB, Norm W1BYH, and Gerard K1BBV.

The discussion was both varied and interesting. Norm W1BYH is still pretty active with 60 Meter operation and reports he is close to working all states. The city elections the previous day were discussed with opinions on the winners and the losers.

All of the members were opposed to the BPL method of getting into the internet by putting an RF signal on the power lines. Tom K1JHC suggests that members join the Quarter Century Club, which holds luncheon meetings in Littleton and Mendon, MA. Please try to join us at our next meeting on Wednesday, December 3 to enjoy good fellowship and the fine food.


FCC Invites Comments On Morse Code-Related Petitions

The FCC has sounded the bell to begin Round 2 of the Morse code debate by inviting public comment on another group of seven Morse-related petitions for rulemaking. The FCC put the petitions on public notice October 8, and comments were due by November 7.

To view filed comments, use the FCC’s Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS) <>, click on "Search for Filed Comments" under "ECFS Main Links" and type in the complete RM number, including the hyphen, in the "Proceeding" field. "RM" must be in capital letters.

from The ARRL Letter

Vol. 22, No. 40

October 10, 2003


Amateur Radio Support Continues In California Fire Disaster

Ham radio volunteers continue to play a role in the ongoing fire emergency in Southern California. A dozen fires, some of them massive, now have burned some 750,000 acres and claimed 20 lives, most of them in the hard-hit San Diego area.

"We’ve been busy," ARRL San Diego Section Manager Kent Tiburski said October 29. "This is by far the worst disaster we’ve ever experienced." He estimated that approximately 200 Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) and Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) volunteers have participated so far in the fire emergency with about 100 in the field at any given time.

Tiburski says hams have been assisting American Red Cross relief efforts, primarily in terms of logistics and working with damage assessment teams. Others have provided liaison between the California Department of Forestry and the Red Cross, which is providing meals and shelter for firefighters. Nearly 13,000 firefighters and support personnel have been deployed in California to battle the fires.

San Diego Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network (SATERN) Coordinator Paul Cook, N6RPF, reports he and other SATERN members have been providing communication assistance for The Salvation Army’s relief efforts. They’ve had help from other amateurs as well, he said.

At least a half-dozen Salvation Army emergency disaster services canteens are providing meals to evacuees and firefighters. SATERN National Director Pat McPherson, WW9E, said SATERN is keeping relief teams in contact with each other as well as supporting communication for firefighters, police and emergency responders.

Elsewhere in California, ARRL Orange Section Manager Carl Gardenias, WU6D, says that Amateur Radio operators continue working with relief agencies in that part of the state. "We actually have more Amateur Radio operators available than the Red Cross shelters can use," he said. With ARES teams and other ham radio volunteers from Riverside, San Bernardino and Orange counties available, the hams have been able to rotate shifts.

"The intensity of these fires has never been at this level before," Gardenias said, comparing the current situation with fire emergencies in the recent past.

At the Red Cross shelters—where more and more displaced people are showing up—hams have been "shadowing" shelter managers, communicating shelter supply requests, and helping with health-and-welfare inquiries for shelter clients, Gardenias said. Amateur Radio also is serving to keep shelters in touch with the Red Cross regional headquarters.

At least 1000 evacuees are taking refuge in a former TWA hangar at the San Bernardino airport.

Amateur Radio SSTV equipment was being used to assist firefighters in San Bernardino. The radio equipment and operators go out on the fire trucks and report what they see back to the command center, Gardenias explained.

Amateur Radio operators also are assisting at Red Cross shelters in the Los Angeles area as well as helping the relief agency to locate and establish new shelters. Icenbice said the problem areas appear to be the outer areas of Los Angeles County and in the mountains. Hams have been helping to locate people left homeless because of the fires.

California Gov Gray Davis has declared states of emergency in five counties. As this letter is prepared on October 31, cool and foggy weather have helped to stall the wildfires’ progress.—Steve Ewald, WV1X, contributed information for this report.

from The ARRL Letter

Vol. 22, No. 43

October 31, 2003

The MARA W1/GaZette is published by the Montachusett Amateur Radio Association just prior to the monthly meeting. The newsletter is distributed free to members and friends of Amateur Radio.

Contents copyright (c© 2003, MARA. Permission to use in other Amateur Radio publications with credit to MARA is hereby granted.


Editors: Ralph Swick KD1SM

Bill Wornham NZ1D

Webmaster: (open)



Club Secretary: Bill Wornham, NZ1D

Annual Dues: Regular $25

Family $30

Fixed income $15

Meetings: 2nd Wednesday, 7:30pm

September to June

Mailing address: MARA

PO Box 95

Leominster, MA 01453

Web site:



Gary Busler K1YTS President

Paul Upham, KD1YH Vice President

Bill Wornham, NZ1D Secretary

Gordon LaPoint, N1MGO Treasurer

Charlie Cayen, KT1I Trustee

MARA owns and operates the W1GZ repeater providing emergency autopatch service on 145.45 (CTCSS 74.4) in Fitchburg.

Montachusett Amateur Radio Association

PO Box 95 Leominster MA 01453