Regular Meeting – December 2016

The meeting was started at 7:07PM by Mike, K1TWF.

Niece, KA1ULN, gave an overview of BARS 2-meter Net activities. There was a question concerning the 10-meter activity on 28430. Andy, KA1GTT, clarified that it is not a formal BARS net but an informal congregation place for Lowell/Chelmsford locals and that people are encouraged to listen/join in.

Tom, K1TW, gave advance notice of the annual BARS Holiday Party, to be held 1/4/17 at the Great Wall in Bedford. Price will again be $21/pp for the dinner buffet not including drinks. Attendees may purchase drinks or purchase from the menu separately. A Yankee Swap will be held. It is optional whether you participate or not in the Yankee swap. $15 is suggested as the maximum amount to spend for the Yankee Swap gift. Tom, K1TW will put out a detailed notice shortly. Contact K1TW if you wish to attend.

Gary, W1GFF asked whether the quarterly stipend has been paid to the Church. The Treasurer (Bruce W1LUS) was not present to answer.

Gary, W1GFF, reminded folks that there will be no meeting or VE exams at the Church in January. Instead the club will hold its Holiday Party on January 4 at the Great Wall in Bedford.

Niece, KA1ULN, brought up the success of donating five ARRL Handbooks (courtesy of Mike, K1TWF) to area libraries. BARS flyers were enclosed. The intent was to have these available for check-out, not as part of a library book sale! She donated them to Andover, North Andover, Haverhill, Lawrence, and Reading libraries. Everyone agreed that this was a good way to promote radio and the Club and we hope to donate more, around the Chelmsford area.

Tom, K1TW emphasized there is a final push by the ARRL for passage of the Amateur Radio Parity Act and urged members to go to to send letters to our Senators, even if they had done so previously.

Art, NF1A, talked about trying to get STEM help for a local grade school (4-6) and discussion ensued. Art also mentioned how he has been enjoying the three-times-each-Wednesday CWOPS contest. Niece, KA1ULN, mentioned the Fone Fray contest (UTC Wednesdays 0230-0300). More information is available on the WA7BNM contest calendar at

Gary, W1GFF mentioned changes to over the air reception of NBC Television stations coming on January 1.

Formal meeting business was ended and the following “show and tell” presentations enjoyed:

Mike, K1TWF brought several mystery items for ID. One turned out to be a horseshoeing hammer. A Navy flameproof CW key, a Bendix UHF transmitter (unused, with serial number 1!), and what could be a trailing wire antenna launcher, were passed around.

Andy, KA1GTT, gave a demo of his 1958 Drake 1-A communications receiver, which was a little creaky but did show the capabilities of SSB, Passband tuning, readout to 10 kHz, all with vacuum tube technology.

Jay Vicory, AI1EE, gave an excellent demo and overview of the new Kenwood TH-D74 VHF/UHF digital HT.

Eric, WB1HBU, gave a demonstration of the SDR-PLAY. Facts were presented about upcoming new versions of the software defined radio receiver, and associated programs to run it. Eric’s demo included showing how it can replay recorded I/Q files and retune stations within, and also that various plug-in programs (via virtual audio patch cables) can be used to decode further modes, including DMR.

Meeting was adjourned at 9:25PM.

Submitted by Andy, KA1GTT.
BARS Secretary

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