July 24, 2020 - Merritt, BC

On Friday, July 24, Lee VE7FET Woldanski and Myles VE7FSR Bruns spent the better part of 20 hours getting the "new" VE7IRN installed and on the air, and linked to the internet through BCWARN, TPARC, and VE7CHW.

The existing antenna at VE7IRN was checked, and found to not really be an antenna in the ham band... so a temporary one was installed.

The duplexer still needs some work, but it is on the air, putting out about 20W after the duplexer.

The controller is part of the AllStarLink network, and is Node 435454.

Remote connectivity from Android/IOS/PC is available, for BCFMCA members only.

Still a bunch of tweaking to do, but at least it is alive! You should be able to work it from Larsen Hill to Helmer on the Coquihalla, and from Merritt to Penask Summit on the 97C.

Also note that VE7IRN is now on Broadcastify, hear the live stream here

You can also check the AllStarLink page for the current Node Status.

For more updates as they come, please visit http://www.bcfmca.bc.ca.


NORAC members would like to express big thanks to Lee, Myles and the members of BCFMCA for injecting new life into this the key repeater for the Merritt area. This repeater is normally used lightly by locals and then one weekend a year, it is depended upon (read: worked hard) for radio support for the Pacific Forest Rally. A properly-functioning repeater is a critical element in the rally's safety strategy.

Here's a lovely HAM-related article recently posted to Expedition Portal:


Avid User of HAM Radio for Overland Travel

Thursday, July 10, 2020

We have just received word from the OCARC technical team that 360 degrees (3 sectors) of HAMwan have now been installed at Turtle Mountain. There's still some tuning and testing to do, but this is great news for Vernon HAMs.

With this in place, the NORAC technical team will point the Commonage West repeater site to use HAMwan for internet access. This will allow IRLP and PiEGOv2 to return to the site - yay!

For those of you itching to try out HAMwan, now is the time to buy a dish and make a project of setting it up.

Note that HAMwan network use needs to be unencrypted-HAM-project-related network traffic only. It is NOT for surfing the web or use as a wireless ISP to replace your home internet service. ;)

Check back for details on the VE7EGO client setup that will happen in the next few weeks. We'll document the settings used as well as the process to set up the client for Vernon use.

NORAC Vice-President 2017-2010, Technical Committee Lead 2020

July 1, 2020, Island Lake, Aberdeen Plateau, Central Okanagan, BC

Jane VE7WWJ and Mike VE7KPZ were looking for the ideal RF location for a great DX signal to the Eastern part of Canada. A bonus would be to get some kayak action in as one can't play radio all of the time. Island Lake was an obvious choice. A great spot up high on the Aberdeen plateau with no mountains to the East and central access to the Dee Lake chain of lakes for superb kayaking.

Once again, the pair jumped in the Unimog for another roving radio/kayak adventure. However, this time the roads were not that tough. Taking Bluenose Road South from Lavington it's only about 26 km of gravel to get to the lovely Island Lake rec site.