W1VCM (for Vintage Communications Museum) is an operating station hosted by the museum’s own ham radio club. The station is located within the museum’s display area so that visitors can see and listen to ham radio in action. Adjacent to the station are displays of commercial and home-made amateur equipment going back to the earliest days of radio.
The station represents a typical ham “shack” from around the 1980s, and operates CW and SSB on all bands between 80 and 10, plus 2 meters. Future plans call for a vintage AM phone presence on the lower bands.
Any licensed amateur who brings in a copy of their valid license may operate the station, under supervision of the station trustee. Besides operating demonstrations, the ham club offers classes for anyone wishing to obtain a ham license. The club meets once a month on the second Saturday for an informal breakfast meeting at the Windsor 75 Diner in Windsor, CT.
For more information about the museum’s ham club, how to become a member, equipment donations, etc. please contact the club secretary, Bernie Michaels, W2LFV at firstname.lastname@example.org or write, 514 Dewey St. West Springfield, MA 01089
Join the Saturday Night Bunch on the air!
Larry Butler, KB1KIZ, invites hams, whether a member of the club or not, and at any license level, to join an informal round table every Saturday night at 10 p.m. EDST at 28.350 MHz (give or take, depending if the frequency is clear). Larry asks to please check in within the first five minutes, although check-ins will be accepted at any time. The structure is loose and discussions cover whatever topics come up.
Ken Sevene W1ARH (with cap), a museum visitor from New Hampshire, presents an antique microphone with the call letters of the museum's ham station to Dick Stebbins, K1ITV.
| James Burr, KB1NWA searches for a field day contact as Larry Butler, KB1KIZ looks on.
Mary Beaulieu, KB1WFI, checks out the computerized field day log at the museum's club station, W1VCM.
· President Chris Kelling, N1WKO, called the meeting to order at 9:17. Fourteen members were present.
· Bernie, W2LFV, read the treasurer’s report in Charles’s Griffen’s (W1GYR) absence: $912.77 of which $81 is earmarked for the service bench project.
· The group voted to forgo the December breakfast meeting and instead hold a pot-luck dinner party at the museum. Sunday, December 20 was selected, starting around 5:30. More information will be forthcoming once Chris clears it with museum director John Ellsworth.
· Chris reported that the shack build-out is going well with wiring now extended into the new digital-operating area. The ceiling and a heat duct still need to be addressed.
· Dan Thomas, NC1J, reported a lack of progress on antenna work owing to rainy weather. Skip Colton, W1FTE, is concerned about the suitability of trees around the museum to accommodate the Windom and the G5RV antennas.
· Dan also talked about the club’s opportunity to participate in I.S.S. activities and that early December is the deadline to sign up. No one made any commitment.
· Chris would like to see the repair shop project move forward faster than it has been and hopes to devote time to it this coming Thursday. He will need help with the partition walls, etc. Chris is also concerned about lack of money for the project and a discussion ensued about grants and other sources of funding. Bill Thompson, K1NNB, suggested a list of equipment needed and projected costs would be helpful.
· Skip reminded the club that he has been promoting the loan of 2-meter equipment to new hams in the region, but needs power supplies. Dan Thomas will give Skip the address of a source of suitable power supplies.
· Chris told the group that Bob Allison, WB1GCM, donated a copy of Arduino that includes articles showing how to build various digital projects. The book will be added to the club’s mini-library.
· Chris briefly discussed the focus group he, Dan Thomas, Larry Butler, KB1KIZ, and Bernie took part in last week that discussed the viability of amateur radio in today’s highly connected world, and asked how we might attract young people to ham radio and our club. The topic will be addressed in future meetings.
The meeting adjourned at 10:34.
Bernie Michaels, W2LFV
|The group also visited the vintage power station at the dam
|Eleven Ham club members and museum volunteers enjoyed a recent tour of Rainbow Dam (fish ladder)|
We offer classes, advice and assistance for anyone interested in learning about or becoming a ham radio operator.
Technician Classes - The Technician class is the entry level into amateur radio. Classes are being formed for anyone who wants to get their Technician grade license. Contact Chris Kelling, N1WKO, at email@example.com
Equipment Loans - Have a license but no equipment? The club has transceivers, power supplies and accessories for short term loan. Contact Bill Thompson, K1NNB, at firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a ticket but no station - If you're a licensed ham without a station, use ours! The museum club station, W1VCM, is available for use by anyone with a valid amateur radio license. Contact Bernie "Bud" Michaels, W2LFV, at email@example.com
Be Prepared for Emergencies - Hams provide essential communications for their communities during an emergency. Learn how you can help. Contact Bill Storey, AB1LZ at AB1LZ@arrl.net