Wednesday, July 26, 2017

FT8 a New Mode!

Here is a chance to get in on the ground floor as a new mode rapidly gains popularity.
FT8, the newest digital mode from Noble Laurite K1JT, Joe Taylor. FT8 has been added to free WSJT-X suite that already includes JT65, JT9, MSK144 and more. For those familiar with very sensitive, but very slow contacts FT8 will seem very fast! FT8 involves a 15-second transmission versus JT65's one-minute transmissions. So contacts are 4 times faster but you do give up a few dB of sensitivity. For more details visit WSJT-X for Dummies & Experts

Thursday, April 13, 2017

I have recently added a number of DXing & DX News Resources for Amateur Radio at under "Operating" section. The link is

I have recently added a number of Contesting & Calendar Resources for Amateur Radio at under "Operating" section. The link is

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Map Resource for Amateur Radio

I have recently added a number of Map Resources for Amateur Radio at under "Operating" section. The link is

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Building a Clothespin Key

Even though proficiency with Morse Code is no longer required for getting an Amateur Radio license, young students often find code a fun activity. Fancy Code Keys can run in the hundreds of dollars and even a cheap plastic based “bargain” key is $12 to $20 each, even on eBay, and you have over 25 students!

The Clothespin Key was designed with price and durability in mind. In addition, it allows the students to assemble their own keys. Here is a typical price list:
As you can see, if you buy in bulk, you or your radio club could easily cover the cost for a class of 25 students by passing the hat at your next club meeting. You will notice the battery is over ½ of the cost for the key, so if you make it BYOB (bring your own battery) the keys can be under a dollar each.

Friday, January 13, 2017

K8ZT’s Contesting Companion
At the last meeting of my local radio club, the Cuyahoga Falls Amateur Radio Club (, I was asked if there were any upcoming contests, so this article is an attempt to answer that question. .

Contesting Site Links

  • Bruce Horn’s WA7BNM Contest Calendar- (probably the most comprehensive listing of contests anywhere).
  • ARRL Contest Calendar (a.k.a. Contest Corral)-
  • - Contesting News, Articles, Surveys, Tips, Calendars & more!
  • SM3CER Contest Service- contests, propogation, DX spots and more.

  • DL2NBY’s Ham Radio Contest Calendars - A somewhat overwhelming but very thorough collection of subscribable Google Calendars (CW, Phone, Digital Contest & Mixed).
  • a place for rumors, bragging, and summaries of current contests. You can upload your claimed score here to share with the world
  • The CQ Magazine Contests- Worldwide DX- PH, CW, RTTY & 160M; WPX- PH, CW & RTTY and DX Marathon (some of the most popular/larger contests).
  • NG3K Amateur Radio Contest/DX Page,, the place to find Announced DX Operations (ADXO) Stations that will be on during Contests plus a wide variety of other tools for Contesters and/or DXers.
  • State & Province QSO Party Calendar by N5NA-

Contesting Anecdote-
Did you ever think about it- Amateur Radio Contesting 
is the only competition I can think of 
where you cannot score points unless
you provide your competitors with points!