This edition of CALLING CQ was emailed to subscribers on May 8, 2017

The Bouvet Island DXpedition team (3YØZ) announced they have signed a Letter of Intent to employ a Chilean maritime and aviation company to provide passage on a ship that includes two helicopters for landing on the island. The announcement also said, “this is likely the most expensive DXpedition ever attempted and the operating team has committed to fund up to 50% of the costs. We are hopeful the DX community will fund the remainder”.

Bouvet Island

Bouvet is one of the most isolated spots in the whole world – a fact which anyone who cares to spend an instructive five minutes with a pair of dividers and a good globe can easily verify. Around Bouvet Island, it is possible to draw a circle of one thousand miles radius (having an area of 3,146,000 square miles, or very nearly that of Europe) which contains no other land whatever. No other point of land on the earth’s surface has this peculiarity.

Hams and hiking go together like peanut butter and jelly. But unlike the sandwich, you can’t just smear them together and hope for the best. If you’re going hiking, you probably need a map. Fortunately, the National Park Service publishes loads of great free maps. So this fellow collected them all and makes them more easily available on his Web site NPMaps where you’ll find hundreds of PDF and image files of any U.S. national park map. View all parks alphabetically, sort by state, etc. The site currently has 1,612 free high-resolution national park maps to view, save, and download.

The Yasme Foundation provided a grant to Contest University to facilitate the attendance of Dr. Tamitha Skov at this year’s Dayton Hamvention CTU session. Dr. Skov is a Research Scientist at The Aerospace Corporation in Los Angeles, California and is a frequent lecturer in the fields of solar and space physics. She makes regular “Spaceweather TV” presentations on her YouTube channel. Dr. Skov is one of the Professors at the 2017 CTU in Ohio and her talk is entitled “The Wonderful World of Space Weather.”

Hamvention Organizers Anticipating up to 35,000 Visitors Huh? I seriously doubt that. Attendance of 35K would require a 40 percent bump over last year’s attendance of 25,000 - an incredible and highly unlikely achievement. Guess we will soon find out…

LoTW grows in popularity with each passing year despite the naysayers who regularly declare it “too difficult”. I find that to be mostly the bleating of old goats though adding satellite contacts to LoTW has been something of a Scooby Doo mystery. Until I discovered these instructions. There’s been recent discussion about this on AMSAT-BB that turned up a few additional tips like this one - and this video.

Amateur Radio Roundtable is a weekly program from Tom Medlin, W5KUB and his many friends. Tom is the fellow who streams video from his total Hamvention experience, from the drive to Dayton, then from his booth, and on the drive back home each year. Catch his weekly program on Tuesday evenings at 9pm EDT.

The Compendium of Automatic Morse Code by M. Edwin Goss, N3CW is a heavyweight treatment on the evolution of automatic Morse code devices from the early 1800s to today. The book runs 352 pages with over 1,100 photos. You’ll need to be a serious Morse aficionado to appreciate it’s heft on the subject matter and it’s equally heavy price. W2LJ reviewed it recently and declared it a “coffee table book for ham radio” which seems about right.

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Postscript

ARRL CEO Tom Gallagher, NY2RF recently said, “for those of you serious about recruiting new members, the next generation of hams are found in the maker community”.

The maker community is a technology-based extension of DIY culture that’s growing by leaps and bounds, we’ve even got a Makerspace here in the middle of Indiana. It’s a nice facility that includes a full-compliment of equipment; 3D printers, laser cutters, lathes, CNC’s, milling machines, welding gear, drill presses - everything needed to MAKE things.

For a monthly fee, members gain access to a well-equipped workshop. But more than that, they get access to people who know how to use that equipment and who are willing to teach others how to safely use it too. Members with coveted skills usually volunteer to teach classes and show others how to do things with their hands and their head.

Can you think of a better place to setup a ham radio station with antenna?

With local hams volunteering an evening or two here and there so other makers can see ham radio in action - ask questions - operate the gear - get a license. It’s certainly the right environment and the right audience.

If we can avoid the typical greybeard ham valiantly trying to demonstrate to others how to send their name using a straight key and a code oscillator then maybe this concept has a shot at success.

ARRL can promote the heck out of this - and they will. I’m hopeful they produce a comprehensive framework for how we proceed to make this work. But it’s going to require effort on the part of local radio clubs and individuals to move this from concept to reality.

Opportunities like this don’t come round often.

Make it a great week!

73, Jeff