The National Bureau of Standards tests of Public Safety high band and amateur 2-meter antennas indicate that a “rubber duck” has -5db, “negative gain” compared to a quarter wave held at face level. In terms of effective radiated power (ERP), this means that a 5 watt HT with rubber duck, radiates only 1 watt.
- Operating an HT on your belt results in another -20db attenuation, reducing ERP to 50 milliwatts! That’s 1/20 of one watt!
UHF results are no better…
Due to the design of the factory installed HT antenna, you are effectively missing half of the antenna! Now put the operator on the ground between buildings, cars, trees, and other people and you can see why they can’t hear or hold the repeater
Who doesn’t want to lol when they see this shirt?
Finally winter is gone. The leaves are on all the trees . . . and absorbing RF. It’s time for antenna work, Hamfests, and Field Day. Think about insuring that your VHF and UHF path to our great ARPSC repeater system is solid. Check out the mast height, coax connections, and lightning protection. And take a few minutes each Wednesday at 9:00 pm to check into the RACES net. You don’t have to be in Arlington to check in or even be a certified RACES member, although that should be goal. Our robust repeater system has remote receivers to the North, South, East, and West. Regulars and Visitors are always warmly welcomed. Remember 146.625 (- 600) and 447.625 (- 5 MHz) with a PL of 107.2 for each.
Two of my favorites Hamfests are Manassas on Sunday, June 8th and Berryville on August 3rd. If you go switch your HT to 146.625 Simplex and see who from the club is on the grounds.
Field Day is June 28/29. Each year we do something a little different. Check into the Wednesday net for updates. In any case Field Day is the perfect time to review your equipment and state of preparedness should you need to provide emergency communications.
Keep safe, be prepared, and we’ll see you on the radio.
- Gerry, N3EVT
While surfing the Internet recently for information about the early days of broadcast radio in the Washington, DC, area, we came across this interesting website – United States Early Radio History.
While the website is not amateur radio specific, it provides comprehensive history on, for example, early vacuum tube development (1917-1930), and the expansion of amateur radio after World War One. There’s been an interesting parallel between development of amateur and commercial radio over the years.
Another section of the site provides details about early pioneers in radio.
Early Radio History is a good resource.