RARC Meeting Minutes September 2008

The September meeting of the Rochester Amateur Radio Club was called to order by President KariAnn Wiles, KCØWIP, at 7:10 p.m., September 9th, 2008. at the RCTC Campus. There were 28 members present.

KariAnn began the round the room introductions.

Meeting Minutes:

The July 2008 meeting minutes were approved.

Treasurer's Report:  Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Checking $7458.54
Savings $5689.23 (note 1)
Cash $20.00
Total $13167.77

Transactions this period:
Interest +$49.02
IBM United Way +$64.80
RAREXPO +$14,210.00
RAREXPO -$6303.09
College for Kids -$300.00
Liability Insurance -$320.00
Qwest -$32.74
Picnic -$46.72
Meal for guest speaker -$11.54

Notes: 1 - Includes repeater reserve fund, pending ARRL insurance payout

Membership status:   108 club members  

Submitted by RARC Treasurer, Bob Hart, KCØGND.

  • Program Stan AIØM
    • For this meeting's program, Robert KØRDA will present some information on the internet, and Bob ABØBW will talk about the upcoming Rushford emergency drills.
    • The October program will consist of a Youth in Radio presentation. The RARExpo committee will also provide an Expo summary, and Jerry Nau from College for Kids has volunteered to bring refreshments to show his gratitude for the club's support of the College for Kids program.
    • The November program will be kit-build night. Please let Stan know if you are interested in this.

    Committee reports:

  • Technical committee Rob KCØFOW
    • The 82 backup repeater is now on the air while the actual 82 repeater is being repaired. The amp was bad. We suspect that the receiver is also bad. Both were apparently damaged by lightning strikes.
    • The auto-patch is down while the 82 repeater is being repaired.
    • The 625 Echolink is off-line for now.
    • The 440 repeater is operational. Bob ABØBW has an IRLP node active on that repeater. He had it connected to the Hurricane Net IRLP node after Hurricane Gustav.

  • Public Service Steve WØSTV for John NØHZN
    • The Treadman Duathlon will be held September 27th. Greg KCØEEU is coordinating the event. He is looking for volunteers to help.
    • There are no other public service events scheduled for the remainder of the year.

    • David WØTMP is the new AEC.
    • Bob will be presenting his plan for the Rushford emergency drill during the meeting's program.
    • ARES badges expire the end of 2008. Bob will be bringing the ARES list to the October meeting and will begin taking pictures for next year's badges. Please be present at the October meeting to get your ARES badge picture taken.
    • We must recover the old ARES badges when the new ones are availble at the end of 2008. Only the ARES badges issued for 2009 will be valid for ARES and EOC activities next year.
    • ARES members are encouraged to get an ARES vest. If you need to obtain a vest please contact Bob ABØBW.

  • EOC Steve WØSTV
    • Steve went through all of the old equipment in the basement of the EOC, and put most of it up for sale. The sales brought in $800 which the EOC said we could use to buy things that we need to support the EOC such as more equipment or radar software.
    • We will be using a weather radar program, as well as software that displays our spotter's APRS positions on the radar. All SKYWARN spotters are strongly encouraged to use APRS when out storm spotting. Our EOC personnel as well as the NWS in La Crosse will be able to position us and keep tabs on us better if we all use APRS.
    • The last SKYWARN net is being held Wednesday September 17th at 9:00 pm on the 255 repeater. This will be a multi-county net, and the NWS La Crosse will also participate.
    • There is money in the county EOC budget for a new dual band radio for the EM50. We are planning to purchase a DStar capable dual band radio so we can communicate on the DStar repeaters in the Twin Cities area if needed.

  • DX and Contests Peter N8MHD and Dave KØVH reporting for Stew WØSHL
    • This coming weekend is Get Your Feet Wet Weekend. It's a slow CW contest for new people to try.
    • Saturday-Sunday is the All VHF Contest. Use simplex, but not 146.52.

  • Education Bill NØNUV
    • Nothing new to report at Schaeffer.
    • There have been equipment donations made to the school stations including an amp and a tower.

  • RARExpo Stan AIØM
    • The Expo committee is planning a debriefing session for the club during the October meeting.
    • Some people are already talking about the possibilty of doing the Expo again in 2009. This time it would be different. We would have to rethink the flea market part of the Expo.
    • Comments from various club members were that most people went for the conferences, the information tables were valueable, and the commercial vendors were good.
    • The financials are not complete, however, it does appear that we made money on the Expo.
    • We all learned a lot from the Expo experience. More information will be discussed at the October club meeting.

    Old Business:

    • As a result of a vote at the July club meeting, the Education Committee will finalize all expenses related to education and get those covered by the end of the calendar year. That gives the Education Committee adequate time to review all education related expenses, and for the club to vote on them before the end of the year.
    • There is no longer any work being done on updating the club bylaws. The bylaws are complete.

    New Business:

    • Steve WØSTV said that we need a generator for the 82 repeater. The other repeaters in town have backup power. The 82 repeater only has battery backup.

      A generator should be purchased as club equipment. It should be stored with the other club equipment. In the event that the 82 repeater loses power the battery will keep it going while someone transports the generator to the repeater site and installs it. The generator could also be used for emergencies, Field Day, and other events.

      The Technical Committee will look at the options that are available. Some recommendations were made that they look at the QST article on generators from a couple of months ago. Also, we should not need to spend a lot of money on a generator, but we should pursue getting one that has an inverter.

    • Robert KØRDA requested that the club look into purchasing some Byonics Micro-Trak All In One APRS portable tracker units that could be loaned out to people for events or for SKYWARN storm spotting. The Micro-Trak All In One unit is based on the TinyTrak3, and sells for $250 assembled. More information is available at the link http://www.byonics.com/microtrak/mtaio.php.

      Robert also talked about a very small GPS unit built just for the Kenwood D710 radio by Green Light Labs here in Rochester. More information is availble at the link http://www.greenlightlabs.com.

    The business meeting was adjourned at 8:15 p.m.

    Respectfully submitted, Daryl Mowrer, ACØID



    The program had two presentors. The first was Robert KØRDA. Robert provided a very informative introduction to the internet followed by more details on how to go about setting up your own web site. Robert also demonstated the content management system named Drupal which he used to build the RARExpo web site with. Robert's presentation can be found at the link RARC Internet Basics.

    Bob ABØBW then presented his plan for the Rushford emergency drills which are scheduled for Saturday October 4th. All ARES members are encouraged to participate in the exercise. Bob is looking for volunteers to be team leads for HF, digital, and VHF teams. He also would like others to volunteer to be a member of the team of your choosing. Please contact Bob for more information or to volunteer.

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    Last update: October 1, 2008