Category Archives: Club News

The 2016 Fair Update- Thanks Everyone

I would like to thank all the volunteers who donated time and effort to making this years operation at the 2016 Nebraska State Fair a success. We were noticed by management and our presence was appreciated. Speaking just for myself we had a great time. It was good to see members bring their family out and it was good to see some young people participating in the things we do to help out. Hope it leads to a few more licensed Hams. I, for one, hope to volunteer a little more time next year and encourage everyone else to do the same. Maybe next year if there are enough volunteers we could plan some club activities and even some training into the activities related to the fair.

I would also like to thank the out of town Hams who showed up to help out (Jan). As you can see it was fun and there was a little clowning around going on.

I do not have the volunteer numbers at my disposal, but considering we lost one of our fulltime participants this year the hours contributed were almost equal to the previous year, so well Done GIARS!

AUXCOM Workshop October 8th, 2016-Confirmed

All hams are encouraged to sign up and attend this training if you are interested in helping out when there is a disaster or some kind of need for emergency communications. There are requirements to attend. You must take the FEMA courses listed below, I  placed a link at the bottom to the first course, you can navigate to the other courses from there. Stan will have a signup sheet on the event signup page. These are an intense two days, 10 hours a day Saturday and Sunday. 

Image result for emergency communications imagesFEMA Course training

TRG-AUXCOMM: Auxiliary Communications Workshop Description

This class is designed for those auxiliary emergency communicators and groups who volunteer to provide backup emergency radio communications support to public safety agencies. Typically, this includes amateur radio and Radio Emergency Associated Communications Team (REACT) communicators, but may include other volunteer emergency communicators. Volunteer emergency communications operators/groups, using amateur radio, have been providing backup communications to public safety for nearly 100 years. Event planners, public safety officials, and emergency managers at all levels of government utilize their services. Often, amateur radio services have been used when other forms of communications have failed or have been disrupted. Today, nearly all the states/territories have incorporated some level of participation by amateur radio auxiliary communication operators into their TICPs and SCIPs.

This course focuses on auxiliary communications interoperability, the relationship between the COML and the volunteer, emergency operations center (EOC) etiquette, on-the-air etiquette, FCC rules and regulations, auxiliary communications training and planning, and emergency communications deployment. It is intended to supplement and standardize an operator’s experience and knowledge of emergency amateur radio communications in a public safety context.

Prerequisites for attendance are:

 Completion of IS-100.b, IS-200.b, IS-700.a, and IS-800.b prior to the workshop1

 An active FCC amateur radio license

 Past experience in auxiliary emergency communications

 A desire to work with COMLs in a NIMS/ICS environment

The SWIC will need to review/validate copies of the attendees’ documentation of prerequisites prior to the course date. At least seven days prior to the course start date, the SWIC (or their designated representative) will submit an email to OEC/ICTAP verifying the students have met the prerequisites and are eligible to participate in the course.

1 For any OEC/ICTAP COMU training course (COML, COMT, AUXCOMM) requestors are encouraged to notify the State Training Officer (STO) prior to its start to ensure the course is documented in state training files.

2 It is a 20 hour, two day course with facilitated lectures and student exercises. It can be scheduled during normal business days or weekends to accommodate participants’ schedules. This course builds in time for interactive discussions and activities. Because the content is NIMS-compliant, this offering is not modified for local circumstances. It is limited to 30 students.

The course content includes:

 Introduction

 The Communications Unit and the EOC

 Auxiliary Emergency Communicator (AEC) Roles and Responsibilities

 Interoperable Communications

 Incident Communication

 Incident Radio Communications Plan (ICS Form 205)

 Incident Communications Center

 Team Management and Accountability

 Resources

 Intrastate and Interstate Radio Networks

 Final Exercise Exam Deliverables

 Student Workbook

 Informational CD Auxiliary communications workshops provide emergency amateur radio volunteers an overview of the NIMS ICS structure and a greater understanding of how they can support COMLs.

FEMA Course training

Sept 2016 Agenda

September 2016 Club Agenda

  1. State Fair Recap
  2. Harvest of Harmony Parade October 1st
  3. AuXCOM Training on October 8th
  4. Conceal Carry Training to Club Members
  5. Shortened Business Meetings and more Fun time. 
    1. Majority of business material on the Web site
    2. Discussion to be held on the site
    3. light recap at meetings
    4. Less formality
  6. Meeting location/ Restaurant
  7. More in-depth information on all topics will be found on website. 

Shifting from Summer to Club Activities

The long summer is nearing an end, and with it the family activities that keeps many of us from the hobby. But with the return of school, fall, and finally the cold winter we once again have time for the hobby. With the change in seasons comes a few opportunities to spend time with friends old and new. In late August there is an opportunity to volunteer to work at the state fair. Some have asked what we do there. Well there is no set in stone formula, we kind of go where we are needed. Sometimes we just walk around chatting with other Hams, just being available and visible in case someone needs help medically or if a loved one has become lost. We have been very successful in the past re-uniting parents and children, and adult children with lost parents. We have also helped a few people who have become ill get help, or just a drink of water and shade if that is all that is needed. This is one of the last warm weather events we participate in. and it is a great time to make new friends or spend time with old ones.

October 1st is Harvest of Harmony. Yes it can be a chilly experience, but it goes well with coffee and rolls and an afternoon of football. Another opportunity to spend time with friends and a great opportunity to put your communication skills to use. Our Radio communications can be an important part of bring the Parade to the public, the tv stations make good use of our information and at times we can be an important part of staging and judging the Parade.

Also, as Summer winds down there are things that always need attention, the club equipment needs attention, we draw closer to officer elections, and as some of you know we are going to begin crafting a new club structure with our sister clubs in the area. We also have decided to have a project night, those who are interested in this we will probably start with a meeting at a resturant to plan out our time and decide what we want to do, and of course as it is with any endeavour, we need a leader, so we will probably get these things sorted out.

Well I have enough on the plate for now, don’t forget to follow the link and volunteer for the fair. Look forward to seeing you all there.

Project Night

A few of us have discussed it from time to time but have never really done anything about it until now. I am happy to announce the as a club we voted and approved what we will call project night. This is a night we can get together and practice the art of ham radio either by building something, experimenting with something, or we can even just meet up and operate our station. There are a lot of things we can do with this night. What we really haven’t done however is decide when, where, or what we want to do. So, for those interested, send me an email @mycall at gihams.org. Once I have an idea of participants we will decide on time, location, and project. I thought we might set up another Facebook group just for collaboration on projects. If you all think this is good lets hear about it. We could also set up a sked to meeet up on the radio.

I feel like this is a great opportunity to get to know one another better, learn each others strengths , and probably make fun of the weaknesses hihi. Anyway it would be good to see a lot of you in a different environment. I hope to see you all wanting to participate.

73

n0dnd

June 2016 Minutes

  • Call to Order 1930 hours – 8 Members present and 3 Guests
  • Reading of the treasurers report
  • Topics of discussion were as follows
    • Nebraska State fair
      • Online hours entry big help in that Stan doesn’t have to do it and the info provided goes a long in discussions of duties, parking needs, and the services we can provide.
      • Brian added that he had spoken to Tom ridge and that they would provide the cat5 cable if we installed the cable for internet.
      • Parking last year was in 7a, worked well for those who were allowed to park there.
      • Liability issues were discussed. We do not want to become a burden on the facility and State fair organization. We should handle our own liability issues.
    • Mike Mathews, kd0qed, provided discussion on the radio show.
    • Repeater discussion – Elba needs to be repaired yet, Brian volunteered to go up and help.
    • Field day discussion for both Hastings and Kearney locations.Info to be posted on website.
    • Project night was voted and approved once month, info to follow at later date.
    • Discussion on relocating radios.
    • Discussed creating education program to bring schools into the hobby.
  • Meeting adjourned 2030 hours.

Saturday Morning breakfast

One of the best questions I have heard lately is do we still go to the resturant on Saturday morning. Well the answer to that is a resounding yes. It is always a great time to get to know other club members and talk about whatever is going on.

We meet every Saturday Morning at the State Street McDonalds in Grand Island. Somebody is usually monitoring the 94 machine and talk you into the meeting.

CNNSP Payload Update

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Payload Rework and Testing

 
We’re just shy of a month away from my first launch in almost six years.
I’ve been busy reworking, redesigning, and testing the payloads that will be used on the upcoming flight.

The launch is in support of the Edgerton Explorit Center, in Aurora, NE.

       Location:  East side of the Edgerton Explorit Center

             Date:  Saturday, May 14, 2016
Launch Time:  9:30 AM CDT  

My friend and ARHAB mentor, Mark Conner N9XTN from NSTAR will also be launching a balloon that day.

Here’s a few images of what I’ve been working on:


Soft-sided lunch coolers make good payload containers. I started using these back in 2005, one of the many ideas I borrowed from Mark N9XTN.
 
APRS tracking circuitry consisting of a UniTraq model GT-320FW(AS) GPS module and an ArgentData OpenTracker+ SMT. This payload has been fairly reliable the past couple of flights.
 
Alinco DJ-S11 2 meter transceiver and battery pack tucked away in foam. Top of the image is the data logger enclosure and its GPS module (upper left).
 
 
Inside the data logger enclosure. 
 
Had to do a few repairs to the CW beacon. 
 
The CW beacon has a new home, tucked inside the foam (pool noodle) on the GoPro camera payload.
 
Dual GoPro cameras for HD video and stills
 
 
I’m waiting for one more device to arrive. Apparently the USPS lost my newest gear somewhere in the Pacific Northwest, so a new one is being shipped and should arrive this week. I’ll be trying out a TracksoarA new Open Source APRS tracking module. It was a KickStarter project that got funding earlier this year. 

As we get closer to launch day I’ll be updating this site with the latest information as well asmy Twitter account

– Rog KC0MWM