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Updated June 15, 2018

Tim Duffy K3LR
Multi-Multi Station Presentation

May 10, 2018

     Tim Duffy, K3LR, presented via Skype® an overview of his fabulous multi-operator, multi-transmitter contest station in West Middlesex, Pennsylvania.

     Tim has been a ham since 1972. In 1987 he bought an 11-acre, 1860’s farm and immediately started setting up his dream station. Today, it has become that and much more. Tim engineered and built the entire station with an antenna farm of 13 towers. Its capabilities are seldom seen in the amateur world.

     He is President of the Radio Club of America—the oldest wireless club in the world. K3LR is a past ARRL Section Manager for Western Pennsylvania and a graduate of Pennsylvania State University.

     Tim received the 2015 Amateur of the Year Award presented by the Dayton Hamvention® Awards Committee and the 2016 YASME Excellence Award. He is the Chief Operating Officer of DX Engineering and often appears on TWIT TV’s Ham Nation webcasts.

     Please visit the links below for more information about K3LR.

K3LR Home Page

Nighttime fly-by video

Drive-In Maintenance

April 24, 2018

     A few days ago, Alan Batteiger, WB5QNG, and Dave Lane, N5GDL, visited the Carrollton water tower to do a little maintenance on the club repeaters. Note Dave’s car parked right inside next to the racks—so convenient.

     On Saturday, April 21, Dave, Kevin Grantham, N5KRG, and Mark Little, KG5RPX, visited the backup systems at Baylor Scott & White. Now, both machines, 145.210 and 442.650, ID with our club call, KB5A. Check out some pictures in the gallery below.

Racks of RF

WB5QNG making critical adjustments.

Nothing complicated here.

WB5QNG and N5GDL proudly pose next to MARS machines.

KG5RPX making sure no screw goes un-turned.

N5KRG deep in the rack.

Test and test again.

It looks like everything is in spec.

Just one more tweak.

KG5RPX making an on-air check.

President’s Corner

April 2018

     Welcome to April! It’s the time for thunderstorms, Skywarn®, and the first outdoor operating events! Andy Parcel, KE5KOF, and I set up some antennas this past Saturday and some of the bands were hopping! There were plenty of contests who need you to check in, and people to talk to. The bands are alive! And this with a modest mobile HF rig, not even an SDR. If you have one of those, you ought to be able to make contacts worldwide.

     It’s not too early to talk about elections. All officers (President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer) are up for election every year, plus one of the three directors. A few of the existing officers have had changes in their work or personal lives and would prefer not to run again. The Society really needs for you to consider running for office. Send an email to Ron Reeves, NN5R, at to express your interest.

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LEAD Batteries Parts I, II and III

     As radio operators we often go to the field where we power our equipment with lead or lithium batteries. Since theses batteries have different chemistries, their use and charging are completely different. We will devote the next three months to talking about LEAD Batteries.

     The major two types of lead batteries are sealed and flooded. I use only use sealed lead batteries with my Go-Boxes. Sealed rechargeable batteries are Gel and AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat). Gel battery contains a putty-like substance, whereas AGM battery contains special acid-saturated fiberglass mats. AGM batteries are quite powerful and more cost effective that gel battery for the same capacity, however gel batteries provides more longevity and cheap used ones are available.

     The main advantage of a sealed maintenance-free battery over a flooded battery is that the electrolyte inside it is completely absorbed in the separator and does not require water to be added. It does not need regular maintenance (except charging maintenance, which is talked about later), ventilation, and can resist different climates in a better way than flooded ones. They also tend to charge faster than flooded battery, but charging methods and types are about the same.

     We ran across the following article when researching battery charging. This article talks about motorcycle batteries, but this information applies to our use also.

     —Andy KE5KOF

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