Javascript Menu by

General Information

2017 Magazines

Other years

Amateur Radio August 2017

Delivery expected from 27 July

      WIA Member Digital Edition Download


A busy few weeks

The last few weeks have been busy here. The main task has been preparing for the annual GippsTech Conference, which I Chair. The event is run by the Eastern Zone Amateur Radio Club Inc. (EZARC), a small Club of about 25 members. A small core of the membership, many who also hold Club Committee position, are the key contributors to organising the event. We also have a few other members who assist in the immediate lead up and during the actual event. The roles can vary from simple but none the less valuable tasks (helping to keep the tea and coffee supplies topped up, or selling Conference Proceedings volumes) through to the most important task of driving the minibus for the Partners’ Tour – it helps that the family is happy over the weekend.

In addition to the Club contributors, we have some external suppliers that help to make it all happen. Of particular note are the providers that prepare the food for the meals.

Such a technical conference will only work if individuals are willing to volunteer to present at such an event. The whole idea of the conference has always been to share our experiences and learnings with our peers. The audience is very accepting: they wish to hear about the things that you have done and are very tolerant of quirks in presentation style. Why not give it a go next year?

On the weekend following GippsTech, I ran a Foundation training and assessment event on behalf of EZARC, with the assistance of two other Assessors. It almost seemed like overkill: three Assessors/trainers and three candidates. Overall, the weekend was a success, with all three candidates reaching the required standard. So we can expect three new amateurs to join our ranks in the coming weeks. Thanks go to all involved in making the event a success.

Your journal?

We regularly have promotions in AR magazine seeking articles and photographs for publication and for consideration for the cover of the Callbook. This is your Journal, although only a small number of regulars contribute articles. Of course, a significant number of contributors make the effort each issue, sending in our Columns and Club News items. We thank all of these contributors, most of whom appreciate that general and technical articles may have significant delays until we can include the article in the magazine.

How can you be published?

It is relatively easy: start by looking at the guidelines on contributing, found at:

Basically, first think about the structure of your article and then compose your text. Add brief annotations as to where you think any images might be best placed in the article, but do NOT embed the image in the fi le. Send the article document plus the individual image files in to the Secretary of Publications Committee for registration and processing. Be sure that your image files are at least 1 MB jpg files, having initially captured the images at the highest resolution possible with your camera/device. Keep the original image in its highest resolution – that way we can consider using the image in more demanding situations.

Our stock of stories, both general and technical, is running low. The number of articles supplied with very good high resolution images suitable for the cover is very low.

If YOU do not contribute, what happens to YOUR journal? We will need to consider republishing material from other sources, such as from the journals of our sister societies that are members of the IARU.

What would you prefer? Locally generated material, or second hand material from abroad? I know that some excellent material is published in some of sister journals, but I would prefer to publish fresh material which relates to our local conditions. So seriously consider putting your thoughts into the keyboard and submitting them for consideration. Take some good photographs/images to accompany the article.

Then send it in. After all, you have absolutely zero chance of being published if you do not put fingers to keyboard and submit the item for consideration, just as you have no chance of winning the lottery or raffle if you do not purchase a ticket!

Your magazine works just like the idea of the GippsTech conference: it will not work if you do not contribute.

Until next month,


Peter VK3PF

This month’s cover:

Liz VK2XSE is listening carefully to the radio whilst activating the Nombinnie State Conservation Area in the Riverina, surrounded by bush and wildlife. Read about the weekend of radio activity on page 18. Photo by Peter Billiau VK2KNV.

WIA President's Comment

The importance of the IARU

Last time I talked about the magic of radio being demonstrated at the AGM and Convention weekend in Hahndorf in VK5. I experienced this wow factor again last month at my annual pilgrimage to GippsTech – the VHF and above Microwave and Weak Signal Conference held at Churchill in Gippsland and hosted by the Eastern Zone Amateur Radio Club. This was another event where the magic of radio was demonstrated on many levels albeit on higher frequencies.

At GippsTech, Peter Young VK3MV did a great presentation titled “The International Governance of Amateur Radio – The Role of the IARU”. Peter is a Region3 Director of the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) and has given this presentation throughout Region 3. He emphasised the international heritage that Amateur Radio enjoys with linkage all the way back to 1925 when the IARU was formed and the WIA was a Founding Member Society. Today there are a total of 167 Member Societies with 30 in Region 3 and the IARU is a Non-Government Organisation recognised by the United Nations.

What does the IARU do? It advocates internationally and regionally to protect existing spectrum and seek new allocations, it submits technical and information papers, coordinates the work of member societies, enhances the role of the amateur service and it trains regulators in emerging countries through the Support To the Amateur Radio Service (STARS) program and Vietnam is a recent success story. The IARU is funded through national radio societies with member societies paying dues to the Regions who contribute to the central body. The WIA’s contribution is about $1 per member per year.

The IARU is a sector member of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) who set the international Radio Regulations (RR). The Regulations are an international Treaty between member states of the ITU and Australia is a member. Australia attends the World Radio Conference (WRC) every 4-5 years where the regulations can be modified. These Regulations are critical to the amateur service world-wide.

Peter demonstrated this criticality by listing achievements at recent WRCs:
 WRC-1979 - WARC bands (10, 18 & 24 MHz)
 WRC-2003 - Elimination of the Morse code requirements, minimum standards and qualifications for the amateur services
 WRC-2007 - New secondary allocation for 2200 metres
 WRC-2012 - New secondary allocation for 630 metres
 WRC-2015 - New allocation on 60 m and 77 GHz with co-primary allocation due to the amateur service demonstrating they are responsible users through technical studies.

The WIA has a special linkage with member Dale Hughes VK1DSH being the Chair of Working Group 1 of ITU-R Working Party 5A which is the ITU ‘home’ of amateur issues and where any technical discussion on relevant WRC agenda items take place. (Details of WP 5A are given at Having such a highly qualified and well respected amateur as the Chair of this important working group brings enormous support our cause. There are also some important historical linkages with the WIA: John Moyle gaining access to the microwave bands in 1947 and Michael Owen playing a large part in revising Article 25 of the Radio Regulations which covers the Amateur and Amateur Satellite Service in 1979 and was instrumental in the removal of the Morse code requirement in 2003.

There are a range of matters being worked on for WRC 2019 and you will certainly hear more about these in future communications. I thank Peter Young VK3MV and Dale Hughes VK2DSH for their time and continued involvement in this incredibly important aspect of our hobby.

The Board at its June meeting made some important decisions to start a process of change in the WIA. The first being the formation of a Strategy Committee. This committee will look at positioning the WIA for the near, medium and far future. It will advise the Board on a range of strategic development directions. The lead Directors are David VK4MZ and Brian VK2GCE and the committee will have a maximum of seven members and the committee terms of reference and an expression of interest (EOI) process will appear soon asking for volunteers to assist in this important committee. Many of the comments made at the Open Forum on the AGM weekend in Hahndorf will be considered by this committee.

The second Board committee to be newly formed is the Audit and Risk Committee and this group will advise the Board on a range of business, financial, audit, risk, reporting and control matters. The lead Directors are Greg VK2GPK, David VK4MZ, Phil VK2ASD and Marcus VK5WTF and the terms of reference and EOI for volunteers will be advertised soon.

The thorny issue of a social media policy and engagement is also being considered by directors Marcus VK5WTF and David VK4MZ, if you have any constructive suggestions in this area they would like to hear from you. Another important vacancy that the Board will move to fill is the Inwards QSL Manager and an EOI will appear shortly for this position.

At the time of writing this Board Comment, the Spectrum Strategy Committee was compiling the Spectrum Reform consultation information that was gathered from the over 350 responses. Fortunately, the consultation period for the revised Radio Communications Bill has been extended and this will enable time for further consideration and research for the WIA submission. Stay tuned for more news on this important body of work.

Justin Giles-Clark VK7TW on behalf of the WIA Board.

Table Of Contents


An Essay: Behaviours in Amateur Radio Steve Ireland VK3VM / VK3SIR
VKFF Activation Weekend: Nombinnie Nature Reserve Liz Billiau VK2XSE
WIA honours achievers with awards Jim Linton VK3PC
‘Wireless Men and Women at War’ book launched Jim Linton VK3PC
AREG Members go Fox-Hunting at SERG Convention Adrian Waiblinger VK5ZBR


The ‘Forty Thirty’: a simple 40 metre 30 watt CW transmitter – receiver Peter Parker VK3YE
More about 2 m and 6 m Propagation Mick Hort VK2BZE

Plus all the usual Club news and columns

VKFF Activation Weekend: Nombinnie Nature Reserve

Liz Billiau VK2XSE

The authors gives an account of her participation in the VKFF Activation Weekend, having set up and operated in a remote Park. The radio activity was combined with some photography of the surrounds.

AREG Members go Fox-Hunting at SERG Convention

Adrian Waiblinger VK5ZBR

The author describes the participation of his family and another amateur in the National Foxhunt Championships held in conjunction with the SERG Convention in Mt Gambier.

The ‘Forty Thirty’: a simple 40 metre 30 watt CW transmitter – receiver

Peter Parker VK3YE

Another article from a prolific author who normally places emphasis on QRP equipment and operating. On this occasion he presents a 30 W CW transmitter/receiver combination for the 40 m and 30 m bands.

More about 2 m and 6 m Propagation

Mick Hort VK2BZE

The author presents some thoughts regarding propagation on the 2 m and 6 m bands.

Advertisers Index

 64 Amidon / TTS Systems
 64 Cookson Controls
 11, IBC Future Systems
 15 Ham Radio House
 OBC Icom
 7 Jaycar
 9 TET-Emtron
 IFC Yaesu


Page Last Updated: Thursday 3 August 2017 at 11:14 hours


© 2023 Wireless Institute of Australia all rights reserved.
The National Association for Amateur Radio in Australia
A member society of the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU)