A monthly publication of the Meridian Amateur Radio Club September 2014


 Bible Verse

Hebrews 3:12-13 / See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness. NIV



Next MARC Business Meeting

The next business meeting will be held at the Checker Board Restaurant on Saturday, September 6th, 2014 beginning at 10 A.M. Come join us for breakfast, coffee and fellowship.



W4DXCC DX and Contest Convention

The W4DXCC DX and Contest Convention is the Southeast's largest and best attended ham radio event for 10 years running. Located at the MainStay Suites in Pigeon Forge Tennessee September 26-27th. A full schedule of popular presenters speak on DX and Contest subjects throughout the main convention with prize drawings between presenters, drinks and snacks included.

Major equipment manufacturers are on hand to demonstrate new products and answer your equipment questions face to face. A banquet rounds out the day where the grand prizes are drawn. Heil Sound will have two workshops called “The Science of Audio” on Saturday. Come learn how to improve your audio from Bob Heil himself. We will conduct Amateur FCC License testing. It’s a great time to upgrade or get your spouse or friends licensed.

The Convention is just a short drive from Mississippi. A full range of shopping for the family is located nearby along with water parks, go cart tracks and Dollywood for the kids. Bring the family for a wonderful weekend full of fun. Check out the WEB site for more details, filling fast, book early

We look forward to seeing you attend this year. Thank You in advance, 73

Dave Anderson, K4SV



New Amateur Radio Vanity Call Sign Fee Set at $21.40

From ARRL Headquarters Newington CT
September 4, 2014
To all radio amateurs

The FCC has adjusted very slightly downward – to $21.40 – its proposed Amateur Service vanity call sign regulatory fee for Fiscal Year 2014. In a June Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM), the Commission said it was planning to hike the current $16.10 vanity fee to $21.60 for the 10- year license term. The FCC released a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (R&O) in the proceeding on August 29, in which it recalculated the fee to $21.40 for the 10-year license term. The $5.30 increase still represents the largest vanity fee hike in many years.

The new $21.40 fee does not go into effect until 30 days after the R&O is published in The Federal Register.

In the R&O, the FCC said it considered eliminating the regulatory fee for Amateur Radio vanity call sign applications but decided not to do so “at this time,” because it lacks “adequate support to determine whether the cost of recovery and burden on small entities outweighs the collected revenue; or whether eliminating the fee would adversely affect the licensing process.” The Commission said it would reevaluate this issue in the future to determine if it should eliminate other fee categories.

The FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau sets the vanity call sign regulatory fee using projections of new applications and renewals, taking into consideration existing Commission licensee databases, such as the Universal Licensing System (ULS) database.

The FCC reported there were 11,500 “payment units” in FY 2014. The Commission said the vanity program generated an estimated $230,230 in FY 2013 revenue, and it estimated that it would collect nearly $246,100 in FY 2014.

The vanity call sign regulatory fee is payable when applying for a new vanity call sign or when renewing a vanity call sign, although some older vanity call signs are not subject to the regulatory fee. NNNN /EX



Should QSOs from remote stations be given DXCC credit?
By Dan Romanchik, KB6NU

In July, the DX Advisory Committee Report recommended several rules changes for the DXCC program ( %20ARRL/Committee%20Reports/2014/July/Doc_27. pdf). Among them, was a recommendation that rule I.9 be changed such that a QSO is acceptable for DXCC credit only when the remote station and the operator’s home station location are no more than 200 km apart.

As with any rule change, this precipitated a lot of comment in the amateur radio community. A thread on the eHam.Net forum (, 98348.30.html) got quite a few comments. N7NG had a nice blog post ( on this controversy.

Perhaps the most strident post on this topic was written by WW1X
(htttp:// He called these recommendations “uninformed, misguided, and detrimental to the future of our hobby.” Detrimental to the future of our hobby? Seriously?

Of course, WW1X has a vested interest in this debate. He’s the lead developer for RemoteHamRadio.Com, a company that charges other hams to use the “super stations” that they’ve set up around the world.

Note that the DX Advisory Committee is not saying that amateur radio operators should not use and enjoy these remote stations. All they’re saying is that the QSOs made with them, unless they are located less than 200 km from an amateur’s home station, are not eligible for DXCC credit. I’m sure that if you asked any of the members of the committee they would agree with WW1X that the remote stations serve a very useful purpose for amateurs who are not able to set up their own home stations.

WW1X prattles on about how “DXCC is not a contest. It’s not a competition. There are no winners or losers. It’s a personal achievement award, plain and simple.” This is just silly. Of course it’s a competition. As N7NG rightly points out if it’s not a competition, why publish the DXCC Honor Roll?

What I think is detrimental to the hobby are hams who use RemoteHamRadio.Com to simply add to their DXCC scores. I see no sense in doing so, and furthermore, where’s the personal achievement? Anyone who can afford to pay what they charge—-and it’s not a small sum of money-— can work the rarest DX with one of those stations.

A friend of mine, Mark, W8MP, is a RemoteHamRadio.Com customer, and it's a boon for him. He loves being able to work DX from his home in a development where no outside antennas are allowed. He’s not trying to pad his DXCC score. He does this for the pure love of talking to other hams in far-away places.

When the final decision is made, I hope the DX Advisory Committee goes back to first principles as set forth in FCC Part 97.1 and makes their decision on whether or not allowing DXCC credit for remote station QSOs contributes to "the advancement of the radio art" or is an "extension of the amateur's unique ability to enhance international goodwill."


When he's not writing this column for club newsletters, Dan, KB6NU enjoys working CW on the HF bands and teaching ham radio classes. For more information about his operating activities and his "No-Nonsense" series of amateur radio license study guides, go to KB6NU.Com or e- mail



SoLar Energy & Emergency Preparedness (SLEEP)

Will you be able to SLEEP when darkness comes?

Sent in by KF5ENT / TNX Frank



TX Factor

TX Factor is a brand new series of high definition TV shows covering all aspects of the hobby which is amateur radio. A professionally produced program presented by radio amateurs for radio amateurs.

Visit their web site here:

Sent in by WG5X / TNX Frank




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