How to Grow A Rohn 25G Tower PART 2

Welcome back! If you are reading this, you are either here intentionally or the Google machine sent you here by mistake. Either way be sure to sit down and strap in because this is going to be an exhilarating experience!

So my fancy book readings told me that due to the magical properties of  concrete, you should build a box out of rebar and pour the concrete around it. Concrete has great strength in compression, but doesn’t have nearly as much strength when tension is applied. To remedy this, we add the magical properties of steel. Steel is STRONG in tension, so by building a box out of the stuff and pouring concrete around it, the steel takes the tension and “the crete” takes the compression. By putting some blocks/bricks/books/bills under the rebar cube, it will ensure that the box sits off the gravel base and no rebar ends extend out past the edges of your concrete cube. This is important so that moisture doesn’t rot away the rebar over the years, thus compromising your tower cube and possibly the tower’s structural integrity itself. read more

2018 Hamvention, ~Fin~

Well it looks like Hamvention just came to a close for the 2018 year. All prizes have been handed out, and all hams will start filing out of the building. Thanks to all of the DARA members that worked hard to put it on, everyone that attended, and to our OVEC members that were able to participate in the badge printing process to help fund the club for another year.

A special thanks goes out to our Vice President Ben, N8BD, for keeping everything moving in a forward direction and helping to resolve any issues that came up over the duration of the event.

I hope everyone had a great time, and look forward to doing it again in 2019!

73 Everyone

Craig H, KD8FYT, OVEC El’ Presidente

HAMVENTION 2018!

Hey folks! It’s that time of the year again, and we are at it again printing badges to fund our club for this year’s events. Want your own custom printed ID badge? It comes with a picture of yourself on the front, two radio related logos, your name, callsign, AND a current copy of your reference license printed on the back! HOW COULD YOU POSSIBLY SAY NO TO THAT?!

Come see us in the Flea Market for yours TODAY(and Saturday, and Sunday)!

73!

KD8FYT

How to Grow A Rohn 25G Tower

Well as with all flowers, spring is the best time to get them in the ground, and a Rohn tower is no different. You must make sure to plant no sooner than the final frost, or there is risk of your antennae wilting and falling off the tower.

Joking aside, we have lived in this house for 5 years and my Rohn tower has done nothing more than sit under the deck and collect more tower sections as I take other towers down. This is all well and good, but as an amateur radio operator I should probably have a place to put my antennas. So let it begin…

Step one when building a tower is finding a good place to put it. I did that, so step two is DIGGING A HOLE.

Now there are 3 main ways to dig a hole in the crust of our planet, but the most efficient one is to rent a backhoe and pay a man or woman to do it for you. Well I am cheap and slightly overweight, so the next best way is with shovels and a lot of hard labor. I dug this hole over the period of a year. I dug half one day in August of 2017, and the other half today!  Shovels opted for were a round nose, square nose, and a non-shovel, the “spud bar”. Little known fact of the spud bar, it will destroy you. A few hours of using it to bash rocks, and break dirt will turn even the manliest of men into a crying toddler, much like myself. That aside, your manly essence after using one of these things will waft through the countryside, meaning all the single ladies will be bangin at your door. Married men look out, you’ll have some splainin to do… read more

Repeater Live Feed Functional!

Well as with many things, getting the live audio feed from the repeater working ended up being a fiddly process, but it was a learning experience every step of the way. Feel free to check it out on the right side of this page!

The current setup is a Raspberry Pi running Raspbian, with an older scanner feeding the audio into the Pi, and then being uploaded using DarkIce to the Broadcastify servers. This offers a pretty small physical footprint, with low power usage, and makes it relatively bulletproof. In the future I look forward to getting everything reconfigured utilizing a USB SDR receiver, which will eliminate the need for the external scanner and the required power, since the USB SDR stick will be powered off of the Pi itself!

Once I finally get all the little bugs worked out from this project, I hope to build up a second Pi with an SDR receiver that can be web controlled. But, we shall see! read more

Operation “Ham Shack Move” 1.1

Well with a little bit of free time on my hands I decided that it was time to move to the other side of the basement and set up a much more well organized and layed out shack/lab space for my projects.

The bench area has been my first area of concern, mostly so that I can secure comms and music before anything else. Without comms and music, working in the shack is a rather boring prospect. To hold me over, I have the trusty Motorola Radius SP50 mounted to the bench  so that the club repeater can be actively monitored. My bookshelf speakers and monitor have been mounted to the wall an effort to keep the bench as clean as possible. The bookshelf speakers obviously supply the music.

A shelf has been mounted under the bench in a continued effort to keep the top of the bench as clean as possible. The shelf houses the audio amplifier which drives everything from the computer audio/radios/turntable into my speakers, and keeps wires off of the floor. read more

An Update From the Treasurer….

All –

First off I wanted to state that I am extremely excited about our new website and the new look.  It looks quite polished and I am happy to see a lot more multimedia content (read pictures, text, member blogs, email, etc.) being displayed.  A major kudos and props should go to Craig H. (KD8FYT) as he has done a really wonderful job!

I wanted to also provide an update to our wonderful group of club members from the treasurer’s perspective.  Several of the action items that were on my agenda have been or are in the process of being completed.  I know that I am being a bit cryptic but since this is a public blog I don’t want to share to much (once we perhaps have a members only area of the site that may be where I post this information). read more

Upcoming Club Meeting…

The planning for Hamvention continues, and shall be the hot topic for our upcoming monthly club meeting on Wednesday, 4-11-2018. We plan to cover our badge printing procedures in order to speed up the process, and to prevent any long wait times like we experienced last year. Thanks to everyone that bought a badge from us at the 2017 Hamvention, and for your patience while we tried it out for the first time!

Unfortunately there is no power for us to use in the outdoor flea market area, so OVEC solved the problem by building our own power system! It consists of 4 deep cycle marine batteries, a battery monitoring system, and an inverter system to run the printers and laptops. At night we wheel the entire power cart over to the booth of our friends at the HamRadio360, and The Workbench Podcasts where it gets a good recharge for the next days activities! Thanks KF7IJZ for the literal “hookup”. read more

Xenia Hamvention Preparations…

Our location for badge printing at the 2018 Hamvention

Well as everyone in the amateur radio community knows, Dayton is no longer the hosting city for Hamvention since being moved east to the city of Xenia. Last year was a learning experience for everyone involved, but after registering our spaces for 2018 I feel confident that this year’s shindig will be one for the record books!

We will, once again, be printing ID badges at the same place in the outside flea market as last year (Spaces 9530 and 9630). This is not located inside the infield, but sandwiched between the main road and the buildings where the ground displays excellent drainage attributes!

More information to follow as planning continues!

73

Craig H. (El Presidente)