Mail-in raffle underway to promote FWRC membership renewal

FWRC will raffle a weather station (left), Astron linear power supply (top right) and Astron switching power supply (lower right) as incentives for membership renewals and new memberships.

The Fort Wayne Radio Club normally promotes the renewal of club membership during the Fort Wayne Hamfest in November. Typically, it received about 70 percent of each year’s membership dues during that event. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, required the cancellation of the 2020 Hamfest, so FWRC needed an alternate method of promoting membership renewal.

The club therefore mailed membership forms (see link below) with a cover letter to every person who is a member in 2020. The mailing included a stamped, self-addressed, return envelope with which members may mail their membership forms and dues to the club post office box.

The membership form is also available for download from this website, by following the link below.

The form requests each member’s email address and phone number, to keep our member database current. It also provides opportunity to update members’ postal addresses, call signs and license classes.

The club is raffling three items this year (vs. the single item in previous years) as incentive join or renew:

  1. La Crosse Technology S81120 wireless weather station with sensors for wind speed, wind direction, temperature and humidity.
  2. Astron VS-50M linear power supply, 13.8 vdc (adjustable), rated at 50 amps intermittent and 37 amps continuous duty.
  3. Astron SS-25 switching power supply, 13.8 vdc, rated at 25 amps intermittent and 20 amps continuous.

Everyone who submits a membership form with dues for 2021 gets one chance at one of the three items identified above. Members may also purchase additional chances at any or all three items for $1.00 per chance. For example, a member who wants 10 additional chances at the La Crosse Technology weather station would write a check for $10.00 plus membership dues. That’s pretty inexpensive, considering the cost of purchasing one of these weather stations on your own.

Mailed membership forms and dues must arrive in the club post office box by Dec. 12 to qualify for the raffle. Members may also deliver their forms and dues in person to any FWRC officer or director. To be eligible for the raffle, members who so choose may do so as late as Dec. 15, as long as the entries arrive before the drawings, which will occur during the Dec. 15 club meeting at the downtown branch of the Allen County Public Library. Members not be present to win.

Current members whose address is incorrect in club records, and anyone who is not a 2020 member will not receive a form by mail, but may download it from this website, using the link below.

FWRC membership form 2021

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November 17 (Tuesday) meeting to feature Red Cross speaker

Woman giving blood
American Red Cross photo.

FWRC president Carole Burke, WB9RUS invites you to join us for the November meeting of the Fort Wayne Radio Club, Tuesday, November 17, at 7 p.m. at the Allen County Public Library, downtown branch, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne.

“The downtown library branch facilities are excellent,” Carole wrote. We will use meeting Rooms 1 and 2, which will provide over 2,500 square feet to conduct our meeting in a coronavirus-compliant manner. Parking underneath the library building is available, and it’s free if you hold an Allen County Library card, otherwise they charge $1.00 per hour.

Carole said the program will feature Zachary Bernath, an information officer for the American Red Cross. He will describe the very sophisticated system and processes the Red Cross uses to collect whole blood and blood products for distribution to hospitals all around the country. Mr. Bernath will be prepared to entertain any questions from the audience regarding the Red Cross’ mission, and to discuss the importance of being a blood donor.

Hope to see you there.

FWRC holds first indoor meeting of pandemic

The October Fort Wayne Radio Club regular meeting was held on Thursday 15 October, 2020. And, it was held indoors!  Yes, indoors at the Allen County Public Library (ACPL) in downtown Ft. Wayne to the delight of those who attended. We had a regular business meeting which included determining club officers and Board members for the 2021 club year.  Minutes from the meeting will be published shortly.

We have also obtained use of the ACPL venue for the months of November and December, and hope to be able to continue using it in 2021 for the foreseeable future until we can find another meeting location, perhaps back at the Good Shepherd United Methodist Church should they decide to open their doors to outside groups again.

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FWRC to meet at downtown library on new dates

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Allen County Public Library main branch

FWRC secretary Al Burke, WB9SSE, announced that the club has booked the main, downtown branch of the Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, for general meetings Thursday, October 15; Tuesday, November 17; and Tuesday, December 15. Note that these dates are different that those originally planned for these meetings and on different nights that the club’s traditional Friday meetings, because the space was not available on the normal dates.

The club booked Rooms A and B, which have a combined, normal seating capacity of 126 and will therefore accommodate at least 30 people with required social distancing. Members who enter the building from the Library Plaza entrance will bear to the left to find the meeting room. Those who park under the building will arise at the west entrance and will walk toward the Library Plaza entrance and turn right.

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Update on FWRC digital repeaters

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Fort Wayne Radio Club Parrot Road repeater enclosure

The Fort Wayne Radio Club provides a D-STAR repeater operating on 442.99375(+)  MHz from its Parrott Rd. site near New Haven, plus an analog FM /C4FM digital (Fusion) repeater operating on 146.940(-) also located at the Parrott Rd. site.  Both antennas are up about 270’ so both machines have pretty respectable coverage. Both machines operate with the club’s W9TE callsign.

The FM / Fusion machine gets a reasonable amount of use, predominantly in the analog mode. It has a significant footprint.  Operation in the digital (Fusion) mode seems sparse, probably because we have not yet implemented the Fusion Wires-X technology that would interface the machine to worldwide Fusion users via the internet. I note a  number of stations (8) in the Ft. Wayne area that are listed as Fusion nodes, (see www.yaesu.com/jp/en/wires-x/id/id_usa.php), but I rarely hear then talking to one another in the digital mode on the 146.940 machine.  We are just beginning to look into what it would take to interface the 146.940 machine to the internet via Wires-X. It gets down to money for the Wires-X hardware, and the time plus expertise required to work the software and network tasks the interfacing will require.

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Club election email sent

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Sep. 18, Steve Nardin, W9SAN sent email to all club members with an attached document that explains the procedure for the election of club officers this year.

If you are a current member and did not receive the message, it’s possible that club records lack your current email address. Contact Steve directly at w9san@arrl.net.

Outdoor FWRC meeting Sep. 18

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Steve Nardin, W9SAN announced via email today that the Fort Wayne Radio Club will hold its monthly general meeting Sept. 18, at 7 p.m. in the parking lot of Good Shepherd United Methodist Church, 4700 Vance Avenue. The weather might be colder than usual, so Steve encouraged members to consider bringing a sweater, sweatshirt or jacket. He also requested members to bring a chair and a mask to wear.

Steve reported that club leaders are searching for an indoor location for subsequent meetings.

He also reported that they are working on email or postal mailings to enable all members to vote in the coming election of club officers, regardless of members’ ability to attend meetings in person.

Steve wrote that club leaders plan to mail membership forms, since the club will not be able to collect dues during the Fort Wayne Hamfest this year. They still hope, however, to offer a raffle of some kind as an incentive to pay dues before the first of December. Steve encouraged members to contact a member of the club board of directors with any suggestions for raffle prizes.