A monthly publication of the Meridian Amateur Radio Club February 2015


 Bible Verse

Heb 4:15-16 / For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (NIV)



Next MARC Business Meeting

The next business meeting will be held at the Checker Board Restaurant on Saturday, February 7th, 2015 beginning at 10 A.M. Come join us for breakfast, coffee and fellowship.



2015 MARC Club Officers

President KB5SZJ Charles Grisham
Vice President KE5ETN Frank Buckley
Secretary KL7SLM Scott McCormick
Treasurer KI6DES Shelly McCormick



Gary White KF5MWE places 2nd in " To Go Box Competition"

Gary White KF5MWE placed Second (2nd) in the "To Go Box Competition" on January 24th at the Jackson Hamfest. He has a lot of time, effort and money invested and it all paid off. Congratulations Gary!


GoBox is capable of all modes including AM, FM, SSB, digital psk31, jt65, 300 HF packet and 1200 2 meter packet.
Mars Capable Bands some Receiver Only
.1-30 Mhz HF
50 Mhz 6 meter
AM Aircraft
76-108Mhz FM radio

100 Watts HF
50 Watts VHF
40 Watts UHF


Custom made DC switching/Voltmeter filler plate
Swtchable Gooseneck Map/Work Light
MFJ-929 - Automatic Antenna Tuner
Yeasu FT-897 - All band all mode radio (including 2 meter, 440Mhz, and
aircraft receive).
MFJ-4230MV Switching 12 Volt Power Supply
SignaLink USB - Sound Card Interface
Network Switch - Switch between the SignaLink and Kantronics interfaces
Kantronics KPC-3 Packet Modem
Foxconn Book Computer - Dual Atom 1.8GHz Processor, 4GB Memory, 500GB
Hard Drive, Wifi
WOUXUN UV920P-A - VHF/UHF Dual Band, dual receiver radio, 76-108Mhz FM
radio receive
Microsoft Wireless Keyboard and Mouse
Hanns-G 15inch LED Backlite LCD Panel

Custom made antenna jack filler plate
3 in1 Cigarette Lighter Socket Splitter
West Mountain Radio PWRgate PG40S
Bestek 300Watt Power Inverter
2 12Ah Batterries
Direct connect 2 meter/440 Rear Antenna
Direct Connect HF Rear Antenna


Treasurer Report

It's that time again; Please bring your dues to the Checker Board Restaurant on Saturday mornings or mail them to the address below. Please note the club now has a POST OFFICE BOX. Thank you for your support. Dues are:

  • $23.00 per Year per Member
  • $25.00 per Year for Family
  • $15.00 per year if 65 or older

Meridian Amateur Radio Club
P.O. Box 522
Meridian, MS 39302

73, Shelly, KI6DES



FCC “Paperless” Amateur Radio License Policy Goes into Effect on February 17

01/28/2015 [UPDATED 2015-01-29 1939 UTC] Starting February 17, the FCC no longer will routinely issue paper license documents to Amateur Radio applicants and licensees. The Commission has maintained for some time now that the official Amateur Radio license authorization is the electronic record that exists in its Universal Licensing System (ULS), although the FCC has continued to print and mail hard copy licenses. In mid-December the FCC adopted final procedures to provide access to official electronic authorizations, as proposed in WT Docket 14-161 as part of its “process reform” initiatives. Read full article here:



With Just a WSPR
By Dan Romanchik, KB6NU

It's really amazing what you can do with computers in amateur radio, and there's been an explosion in the number of digital modes. One interesting mode that I've recently been introduced to is WSPR, which is short for Weak Signal Propagation Reporting. The protocol and the original WSPR program was written by Joe Taylor, K1JT, and is designed for sending and receiving low-power transmissions on the HF bands to test propagation paths.

I won't try to cover all the technical details here. There are several sites that cover them pretty well:
* Wikipedia: WSPR (
* G4ILO's Shack: WSPT - Distant Whispers (

I was introduced to WSPR by my friend, Joe, AC8ES. He posted a message to our club mailing list asking if anyone had a toroid core that he could buy to make a QRP balun for 10 MHz. When I asked what he was going to use it for, he said that he was making a WSPR transmitter with a Raspberry Pi, and the balun was for the dipole he built for it. He said that he'd gotten roped into doing this because he'd attended a local Raspberry Pi users' group, and when he mentioned he was an amateur radio operator, they encouraged him to try this project.

How could I refuse a request like that? I have a whole kit of ferrite cores, and after some back and forth, we found a small core that he could use.

The software he chose is WsprryPi (https://github. com/JamesP6000/WsprryPi). It's described a "Raspberry Pi transmitter using NTP-based frequency calibration." It uses a GPIO port to generate WSPR signals anywhere from 0 to 250 MHz. Joe said that there are several Raspberry Pi programs that run WSPR, but that he chose this one because it seemed to have more features than the others.

Figure 1 shows Joe's setup. Since the output generates a square wave, a low-pass filter is needed to filter out the high-frequency components. As you can see, the GPIO output is fed through a 0.1uF decoupling capacitor into a Mini-Circuits 10.7MHz low-pass filter, then to a 1:1 balun, which is connected directly to the dipole elements.


Joe says, "The antenna is just a dipole taped up to the walls of my living room and hallway." As you can see he made the balun and dipole from 24 ga speaker wire.

The performance of this setup has been kind of amazing. In one e-mail, Joe reported, "Your toroid seems to be working well. Got the balun and antenna finished and executed seven WSPR transmissions from the Raspberry Pi. The WSPR reporting web site WSPRnet ( came back with a couple dozen reception reports; typical distance is ~300+ miles, max was 593 miles." In a second e-mail, Joe writes, "Did a few more beacon transmissions and checked the WSPR signal reports again. Someone picked up my 5 mW signal from 1010 miles away in Canada."

Joe's turned into quite a WSPR fan. He's even written an Android app - WSPRnet Viewer (https://play. google. com/store/apps/details? id=com. glandorf1. joe. wsprnetviewer. app) to retrieve and displays report from Tapping on a specific report displays more details about it, along with a world map that shows transmitter and receiver locations.

Unfortunately, I don't have a Raspberry Pi, or I'd try this as well. I do have a BeageBone Black, but there doesn't seem to be software that I can download and install as easily as the Raspberry Pi software. That being the case, this might be a good excuse to purchase one of those new, cheaper RPis.


When he's not digging through his junk box or teaching amateur radio classes, KB6NU writes about amateur radio at KB6NU. Com. He has just released The CW Geek's Guide to Having Fun with Morse Code. The book is available on or on




APRIL 11, 2015 8 AM – 2 PM

Click Here for Hamfest Flyer



Northeast Louisiana Hamfest

Mark your calendar! The Northeast Louisiana Hamfest in Monroe, Louisiana, is scheduled for April 18. More information will follow.

73, Jim Ragsdale - W5LA
Hamfest Chairman





Have a great month


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