October 2015 Club Meeting - "Navigation and GPS"

October 16, 2015 ?

7:00pm MST

Ascension Lutheran Church 1220 West Magee Road, Tucson, AZ

Handyman Corner

Presented by Tom, W8TK

"Make Your Own Solder Flux"

Navigation and GPS

Presented by George NG7A

  Figuring out one’s location and how to get to a destination may be one of mankind’s oldest pastimes. Navigation and positioning are crucial to many activities and yet have been quite cumbersome. Over time, all kinds of technologies have attempted to simplify the task, but each one has had a major disadvantage. When the US DoD decided to have a super precise form of worldwide positioning, they had the kind of money ($12 Billion) to build something really good.

Our own George NG7A will briefly examine the historical forms of Navigation and then delve into the inner workings of GPS. He led the RF design team at UPS Aviation Technologies that developed the World’s First GPS Receiver certified by the Federal Aviation Administration to provide vertical guidance through the clouds to within 200 feet of the ground. Some practical tips on best operating practices of GPS and how to minimize jamming from other radios will be offered.

September 2015 Club Meeting - "Softare Defined Radios"

September 18, 2015 ?

7:00pm MST

Ascension Lutheran Church 1220 West Magee Road, Tucson, AZ

Handyman Corner

Presented by Tom, W8TK

"Build a Balun, Save a Chair"

"New" - Signals from OVARC

Presented by Carl, KB7AZ

Software Defined Radios

Presented by Stephen Hicks, N5AC


Is Software Defined Radio (SDR) the future of ham radio?
What makes an SDR different from a classic radio?
Would an SDR make my radio use better and more fun?
Can I work more stations in a contest with an SDR?
Is SDR just an architectural difference in the "guts" of the radio or is it more?
Can I get an SDR with knobs?

Steve will discuss the genesis of Software Define Radio (SDR) and its debut in ham radio. He will cover the different elements of an SDR in an easy-to-understand way and provide you with a working knowledge of the different kinds of SDRs and the benefits of these differences. He will then talk about how an SDR can provide benefits in different operating modes and the tradeoffs that have been made in the production of different SDRs. An overview of FlexRadios products and some other SDRs will be provided including a look at Maestro, FlexRadio Systems' new breakout device that is changing the way hams look at SDR. At the conclusion of the talk, Steve will answer your questions about radios and how they work.

About Steve

Steve Hicks joined FlexRadio Systems in 2008. As Vice President of Engineering, Steve is responsible for all aspects of the company’s product development and product strategy. Steve brings over 25 years of technology experience having held posts at a number of companies including Rockwell/Collins, Digital Equipment Corporation, and Texas Instruments as well as his own software and consulting businesses. Steve was licensed in 1977 at the age of 12 and currently holds an Extra Class license. He is a life member of the ARRL, Central States Microwave Society and the Texas VHF-FM Society. He has also previously held the post of President of the North Texas Microwave Society and is a current director of the Central States VHF Society (CSVHFS). Steve was awarded the Mini Circuits Annual Award for Design Achievement in 2008. Steve received his BSEE from Texas A&M University and an Executive MBA from Southern Methodist University. ? Steve lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and three children.

August 2015 Club Meeting - "fldigi & NBEMS"

August 21, 2015 ?

7:00pm MST

Ascension Lutheran Church 1220 West Magee Road, Tucson, AZ

Handyman Corner

Presented by Tom, W8TK

"Hug a Tree"


fldigi & NBEMS

Presented by Ron Herring, W7HD; George James, KD7XP; & Scott Boone, K7ADX


If you ever wanted to learn about FLDIGI and its associated programs, you will NOT want to miss this presentation on August 21st at 7:00 pm MST at the OVARC monthly meeting. 

Ron, W7HD, will provide the introduction and present a short slide show.
George, KD7XP, will provide information on NBEMS and uses for emergency communications.
Scott, K7ADX, will show off his Raspberry Pi version running FLdigi under Linux, replete with a keyboard and display for about $120.

There will be a live demo of just what type of equipment can be used.  Do you have a handheld and a computer with a sound card and microphone?   That's the minimum requirement for full two-way communication.  

The fldigi program is developed under Linux, then ported to Windows and Mac.  Dave Freese, W1HKJ, is the author of the program and still actively maintains his website http://w1hkj.com where you can download fldigi, associated programs, detailed manuals, pictures and sounds of the various modes (76 at last count), plus explanations of how everything works.   PLUS you can get complete source code.  He has trained/acquired several people that can take over should he become ill, so the website is expected to last indefinitely...

Note-taking is not necessary, since a handout with the website addresses where you can download your own PDF or PPT copy of the presentation will be available.

Some of the other equipment that will be shown in the live demo will be the Elecraft KX3 and Alinco DX-SR8T and possibly a Yaesu FT-897, plus various handhelds.

Also on the website are detailed instructions on how to set up FLDIGI for NBEMS (Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System) and SGARNS (Second Generation Amateur Radio Network System).

For a preview of the presentation, point your browser to http://w7hd.net/ovarc-fldigi to obtain a PDF or PPT copy of the files.  Please note that these files are in flux until the meeting, subject to change without notice :-)