delara news Delaware Amateur Radio Association, Delaware OH   VOL 36 NUMBER 8

Ohio Section News

Scott Yonaly, N8SY Ohio Section Manager Wow.. Working on my recovery… I never knew just how much energy it takes to recover from something like a motorcycle crash! I’m still banged up pretty good, but I am alive, walking and talking! Being left handed and having my left arm in a brace  from my shoulder to my wrist has shined a new light on being somewhat limited to what I can to. Typing, for example, is  proving to be a real challenge for me. I’m a touch typist, and so having my wrist confined is not what I’d call a great way of making me a better typist. So, with that said, if you find typo’s in this newsletter, please attribute it to my arm being in a brace, at least until I can come up with a better excuse! It will take some time to heal, so I am cutting back on my visits for a short time while I do just that. I’m still able to talk to you via email or phone, so if you have questions, or just want to talk, please feel free! This coming Saturday (August 5) will be the Columbus Hamfest and Ohio Section Convention. John, KD8IDJ will be announcing the winners of the Ohio Section Newsletter Contest, and I’m sure all of you will be interested in knowing just which club newsletter was judged the “Best of the Best” this year. And, I do want to add that this year’s winner will go on to the Division Newsletter Contest that is being held this fall at the Michigan International Speedway! More on that in later editions. I will be announcing the 23rd recipient of the Allan Severson Memorial Award. Who will it be? Stay tuned. I’m sure that you’ll agree with me, this person is well deserving of this very  prestigious recognition. Also on the agenda is Tom, WB8LCD, who will be speaking on how to keep your membership alive and growing, and the Ohio Single Side Band Net will also be holding their bi-annual business meeting as well. It’s gonna’ be a lot of fun for all that attend. Be there, or be square! DMR Repeater Range Comparisons (from: Gregory Drezdzon, WD9FTZ) How much of a range difference is there between a Digital Mobile Radio handheld, mobile and base station when using a repeater? This writer simulated the variations of each by plotting charts for each scenario. The repeater chosen was the Copley Township DMR repeater (444.5125 MHz), west of Akron, with an antenna height of about 500 feet AGL. Methodology -- First is a handheld unit using a stock antenna followed by a mobile station with an 2.5 dBi antenna about 5 feet above the ground. Lastly was a base station utilizing a 9 dBi antenna, 30 feet above ground level. Power output is about 5 watts for a handheld, and 25 watts for a mobile and base station. The following charts depict interesting results – green is 1.55 microvolts, and yellow is 0.5 microvolts:  (click to enlarge) A handheld produced a sufficient power to cover about 2,915 square miles, followed by a mobile radio covering 6,387 square miles. Mobile coverage more than doubles the range versus a handheld radio, plus affords a more consistent signal in congested and outlying areas. The winner, being no surprise, was the base station being able to cover more than three times more area or 9,838 square miles compared to the handheld radio. A base station increased range 54 percent over that of a mobile unit. Real world example-- During the Ohio Statewide Net (talkgroup 3139) Wednesday evening, July 5, 2017, a station in Sandusky called in and said he was having difficulty accessing DMR repeaters. The operator chose the Mansfield DMR repeater, about 51NM to the south- southeast, because Mansfield was the one he could access. This paradigm shows that a base station can make a difference when attempting to communicate. Click to enlarge.   With the cost of a DMR handheld ranging from $80 to $100, many of those who get interested in DMR choose to acquire a handheld. However, handhelds have a tradeoff as shown in the above-simulated charts and operators should be aware of range and coverage limitations. Gregory Drezdzon is a news photographer. He has worked as team photographer for the Cleveland Browns, the Cleveland Indians, and for almost a decade as staff photographer for the Wichita Eagle (Kansas). Drezdzon also holds B.Sc. in Journalism, and is a FAA Commercial Pilot and Certificated Flight Instructor-Instrument.
If you operated field day you may have been using a generator for you electricity. If you were in the field and not in a building or EOC you probably got a feeling for how it would be in an emergency when the power grid fails. In a USA article “Bracing for a big power grid attack – One is too many” USA Today states “About once every four days, part of the nation's power grid — a system whose failure could leave millions in the dark — is struck by a cyber or physical attack.” Without a preparedness blueprint in place, most of us would be in bad shape with an extended grid outage. Here is the link to that article: and-cyber-attacks-concern-securityexperts/24892471/ You may not agree with my assessment of the situation however, what I want you to do is to think about the possible scenario of days without power. Here are a few reminders of what you will possibly need to prepare for a power outage that disrupts basic services. If you are not in the dark, you soon will be. Several light sources will be  needed. These can be multiple flashlight or battery lanterns. Small flashlights that use AAA batteries can be used because the batteries are more easily available. It is not a bad idea to have a small flashlight on you person and every room you inhabit. Could you find your way out of an office or building in pitch black conditions? Some crank powered flashlight serve a double  function as a flashlight and backup charger for emergencies. Also consider a rechargeable flashlight or rechargeable batteries for your flashlight. They are more expensive but if kept charged they will come in handy. There are crank and solar battery chargers, plus your car can charge batteries while you travel using a 12 volt adapter. Candles, oil lamps and Colman lanterns are a possible light source. Keep in mind that if it burns it is using oxygen that you may need if you are in a tightly sealed building or room. One disadvantage of these sources of light is that they use fire which if not used carefully can cause a fire inside your tightly sealed building or room. If you plan on using your cell phone to communicate be aware that in a major disaster history shows that cell phones service is hampered by more calls than the system can handle. Also your cell phone battery will soon die so you will need a plan to keep it charged. So get a solar charger, and/or car charger, and/or crank USB charger. There are portable power sources on the market now that can help keep your cell phone charged and working. Assume that you may not have 911 or internet service. Have lists of important phone numbers written down and printed out. Each member of your family should keep one of these lists with them at all times in case of emergencies. We all rely on GPS for directions and maps. But in an emergency if roads are damages, flooded or blocked GPS can leave you frustrated because it cannot see the roadblocks. Prepare ahead of time by having paper maps of your area so you can get where you are going even if the roads you normally use it blocked. If the power does go out, dramatically limit access to freezers and refrigerators. They will stay cold longer closed. Personal knowledge tells me that after a 48 hour power outage we suffered no food loss from the freezer because it was never opened during the power outage. If you have never tried cooking on your back-up cooking method you should use it at least twice a year so you are familiar with how it operates. This will not only get you familiar with this method of cooking but will tell you what accessories are needed to do so. I have picked up some used Boy Scout metal pot, pan and plates meant for camping. These come it a compact kit for easy storage and will come in handy if needed. Jerky, chocolate, dried fruit and hard candy keep well and make a good treat after a few days of no power, no internet and no TV. The MINIMUM goal is enough food and water for 72 hours for everyone in the family – including pets. A longer stockpile is better, especially if you can stock a bit more of the food you are eating already, you can use and replace it so it will always be good and safe. And don’t forget to get a manual can opener or two. That electric can open on the counter may not be available for use. Water could be another problem. If you don’t have city water and get your water from a well will you have electricity to pump the water? If you do have city water will they be able to maintain the water pressure without electricity? This is something else that you should have a large enough supply to last for cooking and drinking for several days or weeks. And since clean water might be scarce, do you have extra paper plates and plastic silverware? If water is scarce you may not want to use it to wash dished. Also, if you eat that means your probably are going to have garbage. Garbage bags are very important as they can be used to cover a window blown out is a storm. But how do you hold the window cover or garbage bag in place? Where is your stash of duct tape? My purpose here was to touch on how to prepare for a power outage that disrupts electricity and basic services such as communications, water and trash pickup. Not everything has been covered in this short article so if you have additional things you think I missed please add them to you list of things you need to get or do. One last thing, you should have a central contact point with a family member or friend outside of your area.

From the Section Traffic Manager

Dave Augustnard, WA3EZN Section Traffic Manager
© DELARA News, the official monthly newsletter of the Delaware Amateur Radio Association, Delaware, OH