Thursday, August 31, 2023

W1AW/5 Texas 20 September to 26 September 2023

W1AW/5 Portable Operation 

 As a part of the Year of the Volunteer celebration, the mystical callsign W1AW will be traveling to the corners of ARRL-land. ARRL members in each state/territory will be asked to operate their stations for two different weeks using the callsign W1AW/x where x is one of the local regions: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, KL, KH0, KH2, KH6, KH7, KH8, KP2, KP3, or KP4. 

For example, Texas second week starts September 20, 2023, at 0000z and will run through September 26, 2023, at 2359z, using the callsign W1AW/5. 


Many folks have operated, and there’s still time to sign up at https://ok.arrl.org/w1awtx/

Traveling W1AW rules include:


• Remember that each operator must follow the rules for their own license class. Stay in the sub-bands that you’re legally allowed to operate in. • Operators do not need to be at the same site. 

• Members that contact the Traveling W1AW stations will receive 5 points. • Each band/mode combination can be activated simultaneously. For example, N5OP could be working on 20 M SSB, N5OK could be working on 20 M CW, N5AZQ could be working on 20 M FT8, and N5HZR could be on 40 M SSB, all at the same time. • State operations start at 0000z each Wednesday. • State operations stop at 2359z the following Tuesday. 

• Operations should not happen on the 12 M, 17 M, 30 M, or 630 M bands. • All logs for the week should be consolidated into one ADIF file so the folks at ARRL HQ can load them into LoTW 

 • Please email them to KG5VK@ARRL.ORG as soon as possible after your operation. 

• Schedule your operating slots TODAY at https://ok.arrl.org/w1awtx/

Select a band and a mode when you sign up for a two-hour slot. Signing up for CW on 20m is one slot. 

Phone and digital modes are two other slots, and CW on 40m is another. 

Taking a Slot on 40m CW does not mean you may use any mode on 40m. Use only the Band and Mode you have been allocated for the requested time period. You may request multiple slots. 

Want to run another two-hour slot? Simply request that slot here before you start operating. 

We are only allowed one operator per band and mode at a time. 

Two operators may not share a slot. Example: W1AW/5 running CW on 7.022 and another station running W1AW/5 CW on 7.42 would violate our agreements in using W1AW/5. 

If you have any questions, please contact Steven Lott Smith KG5VK at KG5VK@arrl.org.

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Emory Texas Hamfest April 23,2022

 This is a nice Half Day Hamfest just over an hour drive away for most of us

The Emory Hamfest is April 23rd,  7 AM to about 1 PM

At the Rains County Fairgrounds at the intersection of US-69 and TX-19 in Emory.  

The Fairgrounds are 1hour and 10 minutes East of US-75 & Hwy 190 

1 hour and 20 minutes from US-75 & Hwy 380 in McKinney.

Bring your Own Table and Chair



Thursday, March 31, 2022

ARRL North Texas Mentor Fest is this Saturday April 2nd, 2022 This is a FREE event


Please join us a reward our Presenters with your attendance
I will be Providing One door prize at each presentation as well as
Numerous Prizes given out during the Great Pizza break
The New Dual Band Yaesu HT drawing for thos that RSVP'd
by the 28th of March will also be drawn

Steve KG5VK

Wednesday, December 08, 2021

How I use Stream Deck and Node-Red tools at my Station KG5VK

Stream Deck and Node-Red tools at KG5VK


 A buddy of mine (K8KI) recently said 

"He had heard of both tools but was unsure how he would benefit from their use"


I decided to document my answer here...


Stream Deck (Manufactured by Elgato)

I use the Stream Deck tool for two things:

  • Allow quick access to buttons which launch Aps
  • Allow use of Macros via other Software on my Desktop 
The first is the Aps, which I could easily navigate to on my Computer Desktop via mouse movements, but I find much easier with a one button click are pictured below on the Main Stream Deck profile I use


From Top left to Bottom right, I have the "Next Profile button, SDR, DAX, CAT, Tune etc.
SDR launched my FlexRadio SDR software, Dax and Cat are launchable if I have terminated them for some reason (They normally launch when Smart SDR is launched)
Tune allows quick access to Enable/Disable of the SDR Tune button versus movement of the mouse
TQSL simply launches that app versus mouse usage and the same with N1MM+, Antenna Genius Software, DxLabs, FRStack and Slice-Master are there for less mouse use as well.

The CQ Test button takes me to another profile set within within my Stream Deck
allowing use of buttons to send Voice keyer messages, The FlexRadio Power button keys the shut shutdown of my radio locally in the shack.
Pressing the Commander button allows me one button selection of tools within the DxLabs Commander control of my radio allowing one button selection of keys like A=B VFO, A/B VFO, etc. which would other wise require mouse movement and mouse clicks.

I find pressing a button or even two or three buttons easier 
than dragging a mouse and clicking several times
much easier especially under contest or working a needed DX entity much less stressful.

My Stream Deck is the smaller 15 key version, however keep in my 
we can have many different profiles for different page sets of keys and what they do for us
Some of my keys launch a new page profile, some of the keys simply launch an App versus dragging the Mouse, the key is you setup your Stream Deck for your needs.


Node-Red

First off what the heck is Node-Red......

Node-RED is a programming tool for wiring together hardware devices, APIs and online services in new and interesting ways.

It provides a browser-based editor that makes it easy to wire together flows using the wide range of nodes in the palette that can be deployed to its runtime in a single-click.

IOW it is a Browser based tool for building a Program to do something with Hardware or other software, without the requirement to get a degree in C# Computer programming or even have a basic understanding of C#


Want to learn more there is a fantastic Groups dot IO email reflector with lots of 
Flows (Scripts) on Node-Red for use in Ham Radio here is a link to it.....
https://groups.io/g/nodered-hamradio/messages


So how do I use Node-Red tools:

Mainly for both local and remote control of equipment with my Ham Radio shack


I mainly built this to use when I am on the road and want to use my station remotely and be able to select different antennas, rotate an antenna etc.
My display layout is a bit rough, but it works for me
You will note two exact columns of beam heading on the right side

The Left column is for my 40m beam and the right one is for my HF Log periodic

I do not have a Flow installed on my Raspberry Pi that holds my Node-Red software and Scripts
which would show the Radio's different meters, I do have two other Node Display pages, which are available by clicking on the ICON to the Top Left of My Callsign on the page shown.

They look like this....



The Top one controls relays to a Receive antenna , changing the direction it is favoring
The lower screen controls a board with eight different relays mounted to my Raspberry Pi
for other tools in the shack, such as selecting an entirely different Receive antenna.

There are more than a few different tutorials on YouTube of getting started with use of Node-Red
my recommendation is just jump in and play with it
Start with small sketches and build-up from there.
I am far from a programmer, having only learned a bit of basic programming in the 70's in high school with Basic and punch cards.

I barely know what C Sharp (C #) is  :)

Node-Red Flows are built using Sketches versus writing Scripts or Code


I will tell you building Stream Deck profiles is supper easy

Cheers!

Steve
KG5VK