CPARC in the News
New Club Officers Elected for 2017
At the regular Tuesday night meeting on November 8th, 2016, members in attendance voted in new club officers for 2017. Incoming officers include: President Steve Weisberg, KJ4KKD; Vice President J.J. Orleff, W0FAA; Treasurer Tracy Osborne, KN9DOX and Acting Secretary Dick Chabot, KB3YR. Others that were elected are Director Dave Dabay, KD3PC;Director Bob McGraw, K4TAX; Director David Schlabach, KC8ICG.
New Meeting Loacation for CPARC, as of May 30, 2017
The School Board has new rules for outside groups meeting in the county schools which precludes the CPARC CLUB from meeting there. Hence, the next meeting WILL NOT be at the Cumberland County High School.
The next meeting will be held at First Congregational Church on Lantana road. The church is on the right side of Lantana Road. Turn right into the parking lot. Park in the lower parking lot. Go in the doors to the fellowship hall.
CPARC Technician Class
Doug Grant takes over as CPARC Webmaster
Pursuant to a conversation earlier today (August 5th), Doug Grant has agreed to take over responsibilities as the CPARC.Net website in coming weeks. Doug expressed an interest in doing the website some time ago. Since my University of Texas online computer science courses are likely to run full again in the fall, I can use the extra time updating the ten credit hour certification course. I didn't want to turn the site over to just anyone since I've spent close to a decade making the site into what it is today. Doug is a very capable fellow and will no doubt do an excellent job as web master.
I'll continue to host the site on my high speed commercial web hosting account until Doug has his site up and running in the next few weeks. At that time, Doug will also assume control over the CPARC.Net GoDaddy account. I'll continue to work with Doug during the interim to ensure a smooth transition.
Monday morning at Dairy Queen - June 20, 2016
2016 Field Day City Proclemation
On Thursday, June 9th, the Mayor of Crossville presented an official field day proclamation to representatives of the Cumberland Plateau Amateur Radio Club. Receiving the proclamation was ARES Coordinator Al Perkins (KA1KIX) with CPARC President Bob McGraw (K4TAX) and Tricia Pumphrey (KM4IOD), CPARC Treasurer, in attendance. This presentation is has become a fairly regular event, marking several years of field day support by the local community.This year's field day will again be hosted by Homestead Elementary School in Cumberland County. CPARC members are encouraged to participate in the annual event that demonstrates the ability of amateur radio operators to perform emergency radio communications at a temporary location.
New Club Officers Elected for 2016
At the regular Tuesday night meeting on November 10th, 2015, members in attendance voted in new club officers for 2016. Incoming officers include: President Elect Bob McGraw, K4TAX; Vice President David Dabay, KD3PC; Treasurer Elect Trish Pumphrey, KM4IOD; and Secretary Douglas Grant, KB1WJY. President Steve Weisberg, KJ4KKD, and Treasurer Tom Liebert, NV1T, did not run for election in 2016. Thanks are also owed to those who agreed to serve, but were not chosen. CPARC is an unusually active amateur radio club, especially for one located in rural Tennessee.This webmaster wishes to thank each of the 2015 officers for an outstanding job. In Steve's case, he is likely to have more time now to pursue two of his favorite activities: amateur radio contesting and fishing. Steve provided me with a recent certificate demonstrating his love for contesting.
New Cumberland County ARES Coordinator
As of today, November 1, 2015, JJ Orleff, W0FAA, has stepped down as the Cumberland County ARES Coordinator. JJ, who has been very active and effective in the position, is bowing out in favor of unforeseen family commitments. His exceptional efforts will no doubt be greatly missed by his fellow ARES members and Cumberland County hams.Al Perkins, KA1KIX, who has been the Assistant Coordinator for some time now, will be assuming JJ's duties henceforth. Al will be the acting coordinator until ARRL leadership makes a formal appointment.
Cumberland County 6 Meter Activity
The Crossville 6 Meter SSB Net became operational again earlier this year on 50.15 MHz USB. During the approximately half hour net, W3HEN, net control, has been joined by up to a dozen others. One station, W9CAR, is always easily copied by most everyone. Ralph, W9CAR, is among the strongest with six elements and the potential for a kilowatt. Ralph also sent W3HEN a link to an radio frequency propagation website, dxmaps.com. The above screen capture of world wide 6 meter activity was taken at about noon on Monday, June 1st.
Effective Friday, August 28th, 2015, the 6 Meter FM Repeater net will be moved from after the SSB net to Friday at 8:00 p.m., Sunday. This ARES net is hosted by W4KEV, which is located atop Hinch Mountain at approximately 3100 feet. The repeater input is 52.93 and output 53.93 with no tone.During the August 23rd nets, 13 ARES members checked into the USB net and six on the FM portion. Participation has steadily increased since the 6 meter net's start earlier this year.
Cumberland County Emergency Response
As most of you are probably aware, Cumberland County was declared a disaster area in the wake of our recent severe ice storm, resulting in the call out of the National Guard. Having lived here since just before the last severe ice storm in the winter of '98, I can attest to the severity of their affect on our lives during both storms. Many folks like myself, who lived through the last serious ice storm, were much better prepared for this one. During the '98 storm, we became much closer to our neighbors. In that spirit, I walked around the neighborhood the morning after this storm initially hit to ensure that everyone survived the first night and let them know I had emergency communications capability. Fortunately, our Android TracFones never lost 3G data service and, except for the first day, had call service as well.Unlike the '98 storm aftermath, most of the houses in our middle to upper middle class neighborhood were running generators. We live about ten miles west of downtown Crossville with most houses on 5-10 acre plots. I suppose we consider ourselves more country than city folks. We've learned from experience to rely upon ourselves and neighbors to weather emergencies. On the other hand, the heroic efforts of Volunteer Electric and Frontier Telephone employees cannot be over stated. Both Volunteer Electric and Frontier employees were out in large numbers working around the clock. Both corporations brought in substantial numbers of emergency crews from outside the county. Land line telephone service was restored to our neighborhood within about a day and a half. Electrical power was restored within three and one-half days. I've lived all over the country and believe our Electric and Telephone workers to be the best I've encountered when it comes to hard work and personal sacrifice. Special credit is also due vendors like Tractor Supply, which kept households supplied with propane fuel throughout the crisis.As a retired supervisory federal agent with over a decade of experience as an Air Force Disaster Preparedness Officer, I've learned that its best not to put much faith in at least some state and local governments when it comes to disaster response. Conversely, it should be noted that the US active and reserve (national guard) military have always proven themselves to be the most dependable and effective responders, whether the disaster was widespread or localized. Still, the everyday efforts of some lower level government folks is nevertheless worthy of favorable comment, particularly in the County Clerks office. While they are not emergency responders, their routine efficiency and polite demeanor reflects great credit on themselves and the county. Similarly, city police and deputies, despite often not being as well trained and paid as their counterparts elsewhere, have impressed me as being in large part polite and service oriented despite no doubt having to deal with far more illicit drug and alcohol offenders than other rural area officials. Special mention is also due our public and private emergency medical responders, who have no doubt saved many lives through their quick and effective air and vehicular response efforts. As a retired emergency responder, I believe my first duty is to my family, followed by nearby friends and neighbors. I've developed a fair number of friends who have lived here all their lives and they generally agree with this emergency preparedness posture. Tennessee is still a fairly nice place to live, not to mention having an unusually low cost of living, and the folks here remain some of the nicest I've met.
Member Station/Antenna Pictures
If you've been looking for an opportunity to exercise bragging rights regarding your home station, this website is here to accommodate you. You may have noticed the new big blue button labeled Station Pics.As webmaster, I am soliciting pictures from CPARC members. To be considered for inclusion in the new website pictorial category, please send your pictures by email to W3HEN. Don't forget to include your first name, call sign and brief commentary on the pictured antennas. As is the general policy of this website, those submitting pictures posted to this website will be acknowledged. The format preferred is 3x4. Submitted pictures will be cropped if necessary and reduced to 400x300 pixels for easy web viewing.W9CAR's pictured antenna includes a six element 6 meter beam. Ralph not only is one of the strongest signals on our new 6 Meter Simplex Net at 7:00 p.m. Central Sunday on 50.4 AM. After taking AM check-ins on 50.4, the net control will briefly switch to USB on 50.4 and make a call for any side band stations.
Emergency Response Membership and Emergency Plates
Contrary to what some might have you believe, acquisition of Tennessee amateur radio emergency plates only requires an amateur radio license, not affiliation with ARES (Amateur Radio Emergency Service) or any other emergency response organization. In fact, nowhere on the emergency plate application is ARES or any other emergency response organization mentioned. That being said, the charge for the plates may be less if you are an ARES member at the time you initially apply for the plates. For example, if you are a licensed amateur but not an ARES member, the automobile annual fee is $48.50. Conversely, if you are both a licensed amateur and ARES member, the annual fee is $21.50. Since no other amateur radio emergency response organization is apparently afforded that discount, one can only wonder if the practice is discriminatory. Since I suspect non-ARES amateurs are afforded the lower license rate, it may be a moot point.ARES membership does not require membership in the ARRL. ARES section, district and local offices, including their assistants, are neither elected nor necessarily competitive. That is, they are appointed ultimately by the ARRL section manager, who is elected by ARRL members in his section. For that reason, ARES appointments could at least potentially be political much like the selection process used by a sitting President to appoint friends and political allies to ambassadorships. Conversely, since a fair number of county and district positions go unfilled, appointments may be available to anyone who expresses an interest, regardless of amateur radio/emergency qualifications or political connections. Ultimately, ARES officials are not necessarily any better qualified than most other ARES members and routinely do not possess any professional emergency training or experience other than limited open book courses available to any ARES member.
ARES is far from the only amateur radio disaster response association. The Salvation Army disaster response organization has often distinguished itself in that regard. Other emergency responders include more than 5,000 amateur radio operators of the Military Auxiliary Radio System (MARS). MARS has an almost century old history of providing emergency communications. Unlike ARRL or the Salvation Army, MARS is a Government administered emergency program. That is, MARS is sponsored by the United States Department of Defense and administered by the US Army, Navy/Marines and Air Force.
A Salute to KJ4KKD and CPARC's Other Contesters
Contesting is not for everyone, but it is obviously very popular with at least a few of CPARC's members. As a case in point, Steve Weisberg, KJ4KKD, distinguished himself recently by placing first in the ARRL 40th annual 10 Meter Single Operator Phone Only Low Power contest for Tennessee. Steve did it again for the current annual 10 Meter Contest held December 13-14, 2014. Steve was one of 5,488 hams who submitted logs.
During last year's contest, which was held December 8-9, 2012, Steve scored 7200 points to come in first in Tennessee. Low power, in this instance, signifies less than 150 watts. Over three thousand amateur operators submitted logs in competition for the state awards.Steve is not alone in his interest in contesting. Several CPARC members routinely compete in phone and digital modes, particularly teletype. If you recently made a splash of your own and would like to brag a little, contact John Seither, W3HEN, for some well deserved time in the spotlight.
Hinch Mountain Linked Repeater System with EchoLink
Privately owned 147.345 (positive offset with 118.8 Tone) is now located atop Hinch Mountain (well over 3,000 feet elevation). As such, the repeater should have reasonably dependable coverage across east central and eastern Tennessee, and potentially one or more neighboring states. I found the repeater to be easily accessible via a hand held 5 watt radio from inside my home west of Crossville.If the story ended there, this repeater would easily rank as one of the two best coverage VHF repeater systems for Cumberland County, the other being privately owned 147.255 (no tone) located in an adjacent county. The 147.255 repeater is linked to another repeater in north central Kentucky and is also accessible from a 5 watt hand held in Crossville. Once a week on Wednesday evening, this repeater is linked to other repeaters throughout much of the southeastern United States.The Hinch repeater additionally is linked to three other VHF repeaters in Knoxville (145.37), and Gatlinburg (147.195), TN as well as Greenville (145.41), NC. The Gatlinburg repeater reportedly extends coverage to western North Carolina, northern South Carolina and southern Virginia as well as parts of Kentucky. I find the Knoxville link particularly useful in that it provides me with the ability to talk to Knoxville friends from a 5 watt hand held at my home. As with any linked repeater system, delay a second or two before speaking to be sure the link is active.But again, coverage is better still. The greater repeater system to which 147.345 is linked additionally supports EchoLink, providing access to other EchoLink repeaters and simplex links throughout the world. Access EchoLink by entering the EchoLink node number (4 to 6 numeric digits). Remember to identify by call sign as you would on any other repeater or simplex frequency. Remember also to delay a couple of seconds before talking to make sure the link is active. Pressing the star (*) key will play a brief message concerning the current node. At the end of your conversation, press the pound (#) key to disconnect from the EchoLink system. A more extensive summary of EchoLink DTMF codes is available on the Internet by searching for EchoLink commands. EchoLink can also be accessed from your computer once your call sign has been verified.
Crossville also has two simplex frequencies in frequent use. The so-called SECRET frequency is 146.580 (no tone). A group of four or five also routinely meet on 50.125 USB. With regard to the latter, a couple local hams leave their 6 meter rigs on and set to 50.125.
Grateful Thanks to Our Supporters
The Cumberland Plateau Amateur Radio Club (CPARC) is very fortunate to have the support of a number of corporations and local governmental groups. The club is grateful to have these organizations as supporters and also as friends. As we are a non-profit, 501(c) 3 organization, we must depend heavily on membership dues and fund raising events to fund our public service projects. These projects have included our solar powered emergency repeater, National Field Day, a set of amateur radio reference books for the Art Circle Public Library and a recent Special Event station. We appreciate the donations from our sponsors which have included both funding and services.
Volunteer Energy Cooperative Big Lots, Inc. Crossville Fire and Rescue
Paws to Spay Variety Store Crossville Memorial Airport Crossville Chronicle Newspaper
Cumberland Co. Fire Department Dairy Queen Inc. Cole Hersey Corporation
Art Circle Public Library Homestead Schools Munroe/Smith Properties
East Penn Manufacturing Tansi Smoke Signals Newspaper Glade Sun Newspaper
Flynn Sign Company Glade Vista Newspaper FFG United Methodist Church
Questions Regarding Website Content and Copyright Issues
From time to time questions arise with regard to CPARC.Net website ownership and copyright issues. The CPARC.Net domain name is owned by the Cumberland Plateau Amateur Radio Club and registered through GoDaddy.com. The domain at GoDaddy is masked and redirected to a high speed commercial website hosting server leased by CompuForensics at Network Solutions. All photographs and movies contained on this website are the property of those who contributed the original content. That means they remain the property of those who created the media, whether or not they submitted them. Before you can download and use said media elsewhere, you require the permission of the original owner. The hypertext markup language (HTML) and scripts that make up this website are owned or licensed by CompuForensics, which does not permit their use elsewhere. Some items, such as the website HTML/Flash code and ARRL portable documents, are copyrighted. Their unauthorized use is not just unauthorized use, but a federal offense. Ultimately, before using a photograph or movie from this website, you should obtain permission from the owner in writing. So that such requests can be efficiently and legally handled by the webmaster, media submissions should indicate who took the pictures or movies. The Links page contains site references largely ported from the original CPARC website at QSL.Net.