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GAREC 2012 was hosted by MARTS

Dale Hughes VK1DSH to chair ITU Committee


VK4TUB Wormhole FBBS back online


Australian is new head of ITU committee

The International Telecommunications Union Working Party 5A1, dealing with
amateur radio, has met to discuss the 5 MHz proposal for the next World Radio
Conference in 2015 and a change concerning the use of PSK31.

Under the Chairmanship of Brennan Price N4QX it met in Geneva, Switzerland
this month.

The discussions about 5 MHz are at an early stage. A Canadian contribution
on the Spectral Occupancy between 5250-5450 kHz was discussed and carried
over to the next meeting.

A recommendation, ITU-R M. [VARICODE], that seeks to establish a telegraphic
alphabet and transmission protocols for PSK31, was accepted by the Working

Among its other work done is the continued updating of the Amateur and
Amateur-Satellite Service Handbook published by the ITU.

During the final plenary meeting, the Chairman Brennan Price N4QX announced
his retirement. He was thanked for his contributions over the past few years.
Dale Hughes VK1DSH was proposed and will Chair the next meeting in May.

(Jim Linton VK3PC)


The founder of the world's most remote radio station, Radio KOLD Antarctica,
turned 90 this week.

Steve Grimsley VK2ZP set up Radio KOLD at Wilkes Base in 1961, and the
station is still broadcasting.

Family, friends and former colleagues gathered in the NSW town of Binalong
to celebrate Steve's birthday.

Radio KOLD was notorious for beginning its broadcast day very early in the

"Well the object of that of course was to get everybody out of bed and get
them off to breakfast, but it wasn't very well received" Mr Grimsley laughed.

Professor Mark Hunt, the Casey Research Station Leader called in to wish
Mr Grimsley a happy birthday and tell about the state of Radio KOLD today.

"Radio KOLD is on an FM frequency these days, 102.5, and it still keeps the
station in music all through the day," Professor Hunt said.

"We share it around so that different people get to choose the music each day
and that can either be an education, or it can be something of a pain,"
Professor Hunt added.

GAREC 2012 was hosted by MARTS

The 8th Global Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Conference was held
in Port Dickson, Malaysia.

Attending the conference on November 12 to 14 were delegates from nine
countries under this year's theme of 'One world, One commitment'.

Among the presentations was one on the Mobile Emergency Weather System which
assists authorities using simple equipment and training.

There were status reports from various countries and these highlighted the
differences and similarities in approach to emergency planning.

While solutions may not be easy to find, sharing the problems and allowing
individual countries to recognise that they were not alone, provides valuable
support to the Global community.

GAREC-2012 included two practical activities. These enhanced inter-personal
relationships enabling delegates to work together more efficiently in future.

Future conferences may seek to involve partners in emergency response, such
as the International Federation of the Red Cross and the ITU, in accord with
the existing Memoranda of Understanding.

The delegates thanked the Malaysian Amateur Radio Transmitters Society in
hosting this successful conference.

The next GAREC is in Zurich, Switzerland on June 25 to 27, 2013. All groups
and organisations involved in Amateur Radio Emergency Communications are
invited to attend to share their knowledge and learn from others.


President Phil Wait VK2ASD
Vice President Chris Platt VK5CP
Secretary David Williams VK3RU
Treasurer John Longayroux VK3PZ

VK6POP Bob Bristow has put out a call to all the broadcasters via the asking for ideas how this VK1WIA
National News can best be delivered live from Perth May 24-25 from the
WIA Conference and AGM.

So if you haven't yet put in your 2 bobs worth have a re-read and get back to
both AND

Greetings Everyone, from the President and Board of the WIA.

Recently residents in southeast Queensland and northern New South Wales have
been reminded just how rapidly damaging storms can generate and how little
time there is to prepare our property for an onslaught. There is plenty of
information available on the preparation of homes, yards, outside furniture
and personal survival items but radio amateurs face additional concerns and
decisions related to their hobby and assets.

How many of us have compiled and refined a checklist of things to do in
preparation for storms and the curly wind season and another for when the
arrival of them is imminent?

Each amateur station has its own unique characteristics which determine the
sequence of preventive maintenance inspections and actions to maximise the
chances of station survival. For example, are tower guys still sound? The
external galvanising may appear good but has internal corrosion started and
lowered the breaking strain of the cable? Can all cabling to the tower, both
RF and control, be rapidly disconnected and widely separated from your
equipment, ideally outside onto the ground? Can the station be isolated from
mains power? Can the station ground be easily and quickly disconnected and
physically separated from the station equipment? Does your telescopic tower
need to be fully extended when not in use?

As we leave our home, for whatever reason, have we done the simple things to
increase the probability of the survival of our station equipment in the
even a tempest strikes in our absence? Perhaps we adopt the 'She'll be right
Mate!' attitude but this is not a consoling recollection as you dismantle the
fried equipment and consign it to history and ponder what went wrong.
The 'If only I had' thoughts are not worth much in the aftermath of station

So please pick up pen and paper and work out your plan of preventive
inspection and maintenance plus the actions and their sequence to be taken
in preparing your station to ride out a storm or curly wind especially those
that arrive at short notice or unexpectedly.

This has been Ewan VK4ERM for the WIA Board


web service:-

The Homebrew Constructors Group of Amateur Radio Victoria will meet Saturday
December 8 at 2pm, 40g Victory Boulevard, Ashburton for a 'show and tell' day.

Send your stories for news. SCRIPT to
send audio to

get local audio news
get local news emailed

VK4TUB Wormhole FBBS back online

After a break of 7 years the VK4TUB Wormhole FBBS is back up and running,
as part of the resurgence of Packet Radio now sweeping the world.

Tubby/VK4TUB has been missing his packet fix since closing the FBBS in 2005,
and recently became aware of several issues in the world-wide hobby of
Amateur Radio that is spurring renewed interest in the mode of operation.

The Tubster reports that the failure of commercial and community based
digital services based on mobile phone networks during extreme weather events
and the protocol wars in the digital radio scene has seemed to kept Packet
Radio alive in Europe and the USA and he is surprised but pleased to see many
new Packet BBS popping up in countries like Spain, Japan and Canada.

The keen interest in APRS has also led some hams to give the mode of
operation it is based on a bit of a go and have become hooked.

So, how do you access the VK4TUB Wormhole FBBS ?

The system is currently running one radio port on 145.175MHz at a data
speed of 1200baud with 10 connection channels available.

The system is currently running one telnet port with 7 channels configured
as either user or forward type.

To connect on radio, fire up your favourite terminal program, plug in that
old TNC and in command mode issue c vk4tub-3 to get the login message and
bbs prompt.

To find out more or arrange registered access on the telnet port, drop
Tubby a line on this special wormhole email address

vk7 local news, email

REAST November Show and Tell night

A very inspiring evening of show and tell.

Tom VK7TL showed a stereo microscope

Ric VK7RO showed his interesting vernier drive and Atlas Transceiver he
has restored,

Bob VK7ZL his digital QRP transmitter and active antenna,

Warren VK7FEET showed a homebrewed CW paddle and 40m CW QRP transmitter
from the 1960's used at the Antarctic Division and it still works!,

Andrew VK7FAAJ showed a 1920s Howe crystal receiver he is about to start

Justin VK7TW showed his VK3XU design valve 160/80m transmitter and
CMOS4000 car alarm.

The highlight of the evening was Tony VK7TU, with his homebrewed calculator,
audio spectrum analyser, computer trainer and lighting controllers.

(73, Justin, VK7TW)

What use is an f-call? (20120415)

Arthur C Clarke pointed out that "Any sufficiently advanced technology is
indistinguishable from magic" and so it is with Amateur Radio.

We're celebrating over a century of radio and most of that is about learning,
about transforming knowledge, applying that and coming up with new solutions
for problems.

What use is an F-call started 44 episodes ago. During that time I've talked
about what Amateur Radio is about, what you can do with a Foundation Call,
how to involve yourself in the hobby, how to ask questions, where to go for
help and many other topics. As I've said all along, I'm a new Amateur.
I've been in this hobby less than two years and every day I learn something

From the feedback I'm getting, what I'm doing is striking a chord for many
Amateurs and I'm happy that it does. Ultimately, the aim of this is to
encourage Amateurs to experiment, to talk, to interact and to not be afraid
to make mistakes. Some of those topics are specific to new hams, but some
might relate to you even if you've had a license for much longer.

I'd like to see "What use is an F-call" evolve into something that you can
participate in. Your contribution might be a simple email that tells of an
experience you had at some time, or it might be an outline of an idea that
you'd like to see discussed.

For me, Amateur Radio is magical. It's a technically challenging hobby that
encourages me to investigate and learn.

What does Amateur Radio mean for you?

If you'd like to get in touch, my email address is

I'm Onno VK6FLAB



It isn't often that you hear a story like this, but when you do it makes
one proud to be a member of the human race.

Amateur Radio Newsline's Bruce Tennant, K6PZW reports:


Gene "Bean" Baxter is a personality of CBS
Radio's KROQ-FM in Los Angeles. He has
entertained L.A. audiences since 1990 alongside
on-the-air partner Kevin Ryder, as part of the
"Kevin and Bean" morning show team.

In addition to making a multitude of over the air
friends, Bean, as he is known, has also created
longstanding relationships with those inside the
KROQ offices. In that vein he recently announced
that he will become a kidney donor to help a
long-time staffer. The recipient of Bean's
generosity will be Scott Mason, N1CBS, who is the
Director of Engineering for CBS radio on the West
Coast, and who has been with the company in a variety
of capacities since 1979.

On November 13th, the two will go to Cedars Sinai
Medical Centre which is one of only four
hospitals in the country that have the ability to
match Mason's blood type to that of Bean and give
him the much needed organ. Bean then plans to
take a few weeks off from work, and expects his
remaining kidney to function at about 80%.

Out of this whole process, Bean hopes that people
will see how easy it is to become an organ
donor. He also believes that if he recovers
quickly and is back to work in a short time, it
may deliver an even stronger message, changing
the minds of some and raising awareness of organ donation.

This will be the second transplant for Mason, who
has had kidney problems for most of his adult
life. He underwent a previous transplant from a
cadaver in 1999 that lasted about 10 years. He
currently undergoes daily dialysis and calls
Bean's decision to donate a kidney to him as a
game changer. Bean Baxter calls it a no-brainer.

Wishing them both Mason and Bean a quick recovery
from this upcoming and life changing surgery,
I'm Bruce Tennant, K6PZW, in Los Angeles.


Scott Mason has been on a waiting list for a
kidney, which sometimes is a six to 10 year wait,
when Bean offered his kidney. For Bean Baxter,
it was an educational process and a decision
based on math, not emotions. He said that Mason
has zero kidneys and that he has two. You can
hear the full discussion with Bean Baxter and
Scott Mason on Kevin and Bean audio archive at

(KROQ Audio Archive, ARNewsLine)

INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, SARL, Southgate AR Club, ARRL,
Amateur Radio Newsline, NZART, ARVictoria and the WW sources of the WIA.


AMSAT Oscar 27 is down but not out.

This according to controllers who are working to return of the satellites FM
repeater back to service.

Here's the back story.

In early October AO-27 was restored to running on its primary boot loader
program. Control operators were able to turn on the Transmitter for a
short time on several occasions. Also required were multiple recoveries to
a stuck AFSK modem.

During recovery efforts AO-27 crashed a couple of times.

Then the transmitter was left on in an attempt to discharge the batteries
with the hope that faults could be cleared. Once the battery was recharged
the high-level software aboard AO-27 ran for a few seconds before locking up.

The team was able to reset it back to the boot loader yet again.

Telemetry indicates AO-27 is locking up while fetching telemetry from the
hardware. As such, controllers say that it does not look like there will be
a quick resolution to this crash.

In the meantime the AO-27 controllers are asking the ham radio public not to
attempt to use AO-27 if you hear it in Analogue mode. This to prevent
interfering with the command team's recovery efforts.




From our technology page, it appears as if science fiction has become a
military fact. This after a successful missile test has ushered in a new era
of warfare in which the military can take out electronic targets without
destroying a single building or harming human beings.

Amateur Radio Newsline's Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, is here with the story:


According to news reports, back on October 16th
an experimental missile called CHAMP fired bursts
of high power microwave energy at an unoccupied
site to damage computers and other electronic
systems during a test at the Utah Test and
Training Range. The Counter Electronics High
Power Microwave Advanced Missile Project flew
over the Utah test site and brought down the
compound's entire spectrum of electronic systems,
apparently without producing any other damage at
all. Even cameras recording the test was shut down.

Keith Coleman is the CHAMP program manager for
Boeing Phantom Works. He says that in the near
future this technology may be used to render an
enemy's electronic and data systems useless even
before the first troops or aircraft arrive.

The idea of using microwaves or electromagnetic
pulses to knock out electronic systems without
having to reduce cities or military bases to
rubble first arose during Cold War nuclear
tests. There scientists found that explosions
created electromagnetic pulses that damaged some
civilian power grids and other facilities.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Bill
Pasternak, WA6ITF, in the newsroom in Los Angeles.




1. Beware of the lighting that lurks in an undischarged capacitor lest it
cause three to be bounced upon thy backside in a most ungentle manly manner.

2. Cause thou the switch that supplies large quantities juice to be opened
and thus tagged, so thy days may be long in the world.

3. Prove to thy self that all circuits that radiateth, and upon which thou
worketh, are grounded lest they lift thee to high frequency potential
and cause thee to radiate.

4. Take care thou useth the proper method when thou taketh the measure
of high voltage circuits so that thou doth not incinerate both thee and
the meter, for verily, though hast no account number and can be easily
replaced, the meter doth have one and as a consequence bringeth much
woe upon the supply department.

5. Tarry not amongst those who engage in intentional shocks, for the yare
surely non-believers and not long for this world.

6. Take care thou tampereth not with interlocks and safety devices, for
this will incur the wrath of thy seniors and bring the fury of the safety
officer down upon thy head and shoulder.

7. Work not upon energised equipment, for if thou doeth, thy buddies
will surely be buying beer without thee, and the space at the bar will
be filled by another.

8. Verily I say unto thee, NEVER service high voltage equipment alone,
for electric cooking is a slothful process, and thou might sizzle for
hours on end before thy maker sees fit to end thy misery and drag thee
into his fold.

9. Trifle not with radioactive equipment les thou commence to glow in
the dark like unto a lightning bug.

10. Commit thee to memory the words of the prophets, which are written
in instruction books, which giveth thou the straight dope, and which
consoleth thee, and thou canst not make mistakes.

Courtesy of Historical Radio Society of Australia Inc. - SA Group


As this news penetrates the ether 2 contests, completely different, are
in full force!...

Hello I'm Felix VK4FUQ.

CQ'S DX Contest, CW and the WIA Spring VHF / UHF Field Day November 24-25


ARRL 160 MTR CONTEST November 30
RTTY Melee December 1
ARRL 10 m Contest December 8- 9


Yes it's an Afghanistan operation.

Mike, KI4MRH, is active as T 6 MH from Afghanistan, and expects to be there
until October 2013.

Activity will be on 80-10 meters (no 30m) using SSB and the Digital modes of
(PSK-31 / PSK-63 / JT-65).

He will use 100 watts (SSB) and 30 watts (Digital) into a 40 meter Inverted
Vee and a 20 meter vertical.

This past week Mike has been really active on 20/17/15 meters using the
Digital modes.

Also, OPDX. was informed that he now has a QSL Manager, so QSL via W 2 GR.

Special Event Station - GB 0 IDD

UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Wakefield District Radio Society will be operating the Special Event Station
GB 0 IDD (International Disability Day) over the weekend of 1st, 2nd,and 3rd
December from the Wakefield 23rd Troop Scout HQ in Celebration of the day.

This United Nations sponsored "Day of Action" takes place each year to
raise awareness and understanding of disability issues and to promote the
independence, inclusion and choice of disabled people and their rights,
abilities and well-being worldwide.

This year's theme is

"Removing barriers to create an inclusive and accessible society for all".

Wakekefield District Radio Society has around 30% of its' members who are
disabled in one way or another.

Operation will be mainly (but not exclusively SSB) on the Bands 14 - 28MHz


Victorian National Parks Weekend a success

Over three days an estimated 400 QSOs were amassed by operators who went
portable in the numerous National Parks in Victoria to give contacts toward
the Keith Roget Memorial National Parks Award.

The vibe seemed good with so many stations activating the parks last Friday,
Saturday and Sunday.

Award Manager, Tony Hambling VK3VTH said thank you to all who put National
Parks to air and those who contacted them.

Some of those in National Parks had a dual task of putting mountain tops
in the log books, under the Summits Of The Air or SOTA program.

For example Peter Fraser VK3ZPF activated six National Parks and one SOTA
summit, mostly with QRP into a squid pole antenna, including working
Madagascar on 5 watts.

The Alpine National Park and a SOTA was activated by Warren Brown VK3BYD
on 40-Metres CW, giving those chancing the mode a rare opportunity.

Peter Freeman VK3PF, at eight National Parks and five peaks, praised the
considerate operations and QSYing on the 40-Metres frequency.

Jim Linton VK3PC said that "Unfortunately the weather went against
Duncan Maughan VK3XBC. Despite several attempts, a storm with hail and snow
got in his way."

Oh well there's the next event, which Tony VK3VTH has revealed will be
November 15 to 17 in 2013, and he looks forward to issuing new award


Top Monitoring Service Award

John Martin ZL1GWE the NZART Monitoring Service Officer, advises the
recipient of this year's award goes once again to Phillip Conza ZL2TZE.
On congratulating Phillip on behalf of NZART Council and members, John Martin
thanked ZL2TZE for his continued efforts.

Mysterious Chinese signals on our bands

Wolf, DK2OM, Coordinator IARU Monitoring System (IARUMS) Region 1 reports on
strange Chinese signals in the amateur radio bands.

Since Oct. 25 we are suffering from mysterious Chinese signals on
7, 14, 21 and 21010 kHz. At first the A3E signals were sounding
like grunt or moo. Now we are receiving very strong multitone signals with a
carrier and both sidebands every morning.

The signals are also audible on 15000 (disturbing the time signal from
RWM Moscow), 18000, 19000 and 20000 kHz. The purpose is unknown, perhaps
a special kind of encrypted broadcast or a new generation of OTH radar?

Please inform your national PTTs for official complaints! Wolf has informed
the German PTT.

Wolf also reports that a taxi company in the Russian Federation is
transmitting FM on 21404.2 kHz daily and all day. He says you can often hear
a female voice organizing the business. DK2OM asks we use this frequency for
amateur traffic daily.


Sunita Williams sends warm wishes to kids on Children's Day

D.N.A. India reports that ISS Commander Sunita Williams KD 5 PLB used
Ham Radio to send a special 'Children's Day' message from space to children
in India

They say:

"Sunita Williams conveyed warm wishes to kids on the occasion of Children's
Day celebrations," Gujarat Science City's senior scientist Narottam Sahoo
said about the interactive session which was approved by USA's National
Aeronautics and Space Administration.

A team of experts set up a Ham Radio link that connected to the ISS through
a centre in Italy, he said, adding that it is the first ever communication
to be received by school children of any state in India, after Williams
left for her second space expedition this July.

For 20 children, it was a memorable day to interact with Williams through
Ham Radio at the government-runt Science City.

Read the DNA India story at


Please QSY off the calling frequency after establishing communication.

Australian voice calling frequencies:
3.650, 7.090, 14.190, 21.190, 28.590, 52.160

World CW calling frequencies:
3.570, 7.030, 14.060, 18.080, 21.140, 24.910, 28.180, 50.160

World voice calling frequencies:
3.690 & 3.940 MHz, 7.090 & 7.190, 14.290, 18.140, 21.360,
24.960, 28.390, 50.160

Calling frequencies for Slow Scan TV (SSTV):
3.630, 7.033, 14.227

Calling Frequencies for PSK31

From Maryborough Electronics and Radio Group, I'm Geoff Emery, VK4ZPP

Continuing its long tradition of support of amateur radio, Icom Australia has
donated an HF transceiver for use by the Special Event Station VI4ASJ. Icom
has most recently been the donors of D-Star Repeater equipment around many of
the major population centres of Australia and its support of the hobby is
evident in its paid advertising in Wireless Institute of Australia journal,
Amateur Radio.

As time grows shorter, activity at the Jamboree site on the Fraser Coast of
Queensland is stepping up a notch or three in preparation for the 14 to 15
thousand scouts and leaders gathering from Australia and overseas.
Maryborough Showgrounds and Equestrian Park will be home to the participants
and activities planned include excursions as far away as Bundaberg and the
sandy peace of Fraser Island.

Almost as a trial for the real event, storms tore property apart throughout
southern Queensland over the weekend just gone. One of the victims was the
multiband vertical belonging to Albert, VK4POW which had been erected for
JOTA and now requires replacement parts from its USA manufacturer. This
antenna will not be joining Albert at AJ2013.

The shopping list is being refined as the equipment for VI4ASJ is adjusted
and the members of the local radio club, MERG get ready for the biggest event
in the club's history.

Reporting for WIA National News, I'm Geoff, VK4ZPP.

Emergency Centre of Activity (CoA) frequencies
3.600, 7.110, 14.300, 18.160 and 21.360 MHz

Earthquake in Guatemala

The rescue and relief work in San Marcos, Guatemala, a mountainous region
bordering Mexico that was hit by a 7.4 scale earthquake claiming the lives
of at least 52 people earlier this month, was aided by emergency
communications provided by radio amateurs.

International Amateur Radio Union Region 2 Emergency Communication Coordinator,
Cesar Pio Santos HR2P said he was very proud of the work done during and
after the earthquake on November 8, despite the difficult times.

Cesar HR2P thanked the members of the Club de Radioficionados de Guatemala
for their outstanding efforts. He was responding to a report from
Marco Aurelio TG 8 AMP, who was in charge of the emergency network.

About 10,000 houses have been affected by the earthquake with authorities
setting up 11 rescue centres for the homeless.

It was the worst to hit Guatemala since 1976, when a 7.5 magnitude earthquake
caused the deaths of about 23,000 people in one of the worst natural disasters
of the time, again helped by the work of amateur radio.



DEC 1 VK7 Miena Hamfest




NOV 3 VK5 hamfest Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society 2 Goodwood.

NOV 15-17 VK3 Victorian National Parks Weekend

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item write in the 3rd person.



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The purpose of "WIANews" is to rapidly provide news of interest to
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