Monday, February 2, 2015

DXpedition in Feb and March including a YL

Hello Yl's This year my husband, KB8RJ and I, WD8KUR, are traveling on another holiday-style DX-expedition. We will be active on the islands of Montserrat, at Gingerbread Hill, from Feb 7, 2015 for about a week, give or take the time to set up and put away the station at Gingerbread Hill. We then move on to the island of Dominica, Sea View Cottages, for three weeks, Feb 15 to March 8, 2015, same caveat with set up and packing. Gingerbread Hill , on Montserrat, is a wonderful ham location. It is located on the side of a mountain with wonderful views to the west from the veranda in the Heavenly Suite. This suite contains all the equipment anyone could ever need, from radios, linears, power supplies, and the assorted odds and ends that all hams seem to collect, including tools you might need to fix or rig whatever you may require. There is a 55' tower with a Mosley CL 33, that although a bit "mature" works exceptionally well. We have clear horizon from the Northeast through West, to the South. There is a mountain in the way to the East. The kitchen cupboards are "stocked" with dipoles for all manner of frequencies as well as wire and assorted equipment to make your own antennas, not to mention all the other stuff that hams donate to this site. The Heavenly Suite is on the top floor of a three floor rental villa, and generally all three floors are booked for various contests throughout the year. It really is a spectacular location for a retreat and an exceptionally wonderful ham location. The hosts are extremely helpful and do not mind when long wires and dipoles are strung up in their trees. My call on Montserrat will be VP2MUR, My husband will be VP2MRS. He wonders how he got that call--says I should have it instead--go figure?! We will be active on 10 meters through 20 meters. On Dominica--no calls assigned yet--we have a cottage in Sea View Cottages, on the Northeast Side of the island. We have not been there before so this is a new experience for us. The owners are ham-friendly and tell us that we can put whatever wires we require up in their trees. For this location we need to take all our own equipment. We are taking our Icom 7000 with power supply, our Buddi-Pole as well as assorted dipoles. We took our Buddi-Pole with us last year when we traveled to St. Marten and Saba and found it fairly easy to use, although it takes a bit of finesse to get the best performance from this system. We are new Buddi-Pole users are are still learning how make optimal use of it---something about the learning curve--we are on the curve somewhere. Listen for us. We will only be running 100 watts. We will be active on Dominica from Feb 15 through March 8, give or take the time it take to set up and then pack up our station; frequencies, 10 meters through 20 meters. We return to the USA on March 10. I look forward to working as many of you as I can. I hope to check into the DX-YL on net on Mondays and reconnect with some I met there when on Montserrat in 2013. 73 Crissie Staats WD8KUR

FCC "Paperless" Amateur Radio License Policy

SB QST @ ARL $ARLB004 ARLB004 FCC "Paperless" Amateur Radio License Policy Goes into Effect on February 17 ZCZC AG04 QST de W1AW ARRL Bulletin 4 ARLB004 From ARRL Headquarters Newington CT January 29, 2015 To all radio amateurs SB QST ARL ARLB004



ARLB004 FCC "Paperless" Amateur Radio License Policy Goes into Effect on February 17 Starting February 17, the FCC no longer will routinely issue paper license documents to Amateur Radio applicants and licensees. The Commission has maintained for some time now that the official Amateur Radio license authorization is the electronic record that exists in its Universal Licensing System (ULS), although the FCC has continued to print and mail hard copy licenses. In mid-December the FCC adopted final procedures to provide access to official electronic authorizations, as it had proposed in WT Docket 14-161 as part of its "process reform" initiatives. Under the new procedures, licensees will access their current official authorization ("Active" status only) via the ULS License Manager. The FCC will continue to provide paper license documents to all licensees who notify the Commission that they prefer to receive one. Licensees also will be able to print out an official authorization - as well as an unofficial "reference copy" - from the ULS License Manager. "We find this electronic process will improve efficiency by simplifying access to official authorizations in ULS, shortening the time period between grant of an application and access to the official authorization, and reducing regulatory costs," the FCC Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (WTB) said. According to the WTB, the new procedures will save at least $304,000 a year, including the cost of staff resources. In comments filed November 5, the ARRL had strongly recommended that the FCC "give serious consideration to continuing a default provision for sending an initial paper license document to new licensees in the Amateur Radio Service, along with detailed, simple instructions for how to make the elections set forth in the notice relative to future modified or renewed licenses." The FCC said that applicants or licensees who include a valid e-mail address under "Applicant Information" in the ULS will receive an official electronic authorization via e-mail. New license applicants who do not provide a FCC Registration Number at the examination point will receive a printed license as well as an FRN and a temporary password to access the Commission Registration System (CORES). The ARRL and other Amateur Radio commenters also worried that unless a license document is printed on distinctive paper stock, its authenticity could be questioned in such situations as obtaining vanity call sign license plates. To address this, the FCC said the watermark "Official Copy" will be printed on each page of an official authorization that a licensee prints out from the ULS. The WTB recently stopped using distinctive paper stock to produce hard copy licenses and has been printing these on "standard, white recycled paper." The Bureau noted that the distinctive paper stock it had used was six times more expensive than the plain recycled paper it now uses. The ULS License Manager now includes settings that allow licensees to notify the WTB that they prefer to receive official authorizations on paper. Once the final procedures go into effect designating electronic access as the default, licensees can change the ULS License Manager setting so that the Bureau will print and mail a license document. Licensees also may contact FCC Support via the web at, http://esupport.fcc.gov/index.htm?jo...ct_fcc_support , or via telephone or mail to request paper licenses. The FCC rejected as "outside the scope of this proceeding" an ARRL argument that Section 97.23 of the Amateur Service rules be amended to replace "licensee mailing address" with other alternatives, including e-mail, for use in Commission correspondence. The rule, which requires that any licensee mailing address be in an area where the licensee has US Postal Service access, has precluded FCC issuance of location-specific call signs in such areas as Navassa Island (KP1) and some Pacific islands. NNNN

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