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Showing posts from April, 2019

Boston Marathon Amateur Radio Survival Tips

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I've participated in the Boston Marathon for the past two years and here's some survival tips for new hams. This is inspired by W3ATB's original Survival Guide. (Although it should be noted that the guide has been superseded by newer documentation.)
Be prepared As the Scout Motto goes, BE PREPARED. The Boston Marathon is probably the preeminent public service event in all of amateur radio. (My opinion, of course.) Mind you, the course spreads over 26.2 miles from Hopkinton, Massachusetts to Boston, Massachusetts.
You need to be prepared in various ways.
1. Make sure your radio is programmed beforehand. Whether you have a top of the line Kenwood or a bottom of the barrel Baofeng or somewhere in between, make sure it is programmed with the various repeater and simplex frequencies before the event. Make sure you have the offsets and tones correct also. You don't want to be hand punching in frequencies and tones on the front panel at the volunteer meetup, it wastes valuab…

2019 Boston Marathon After Action

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Yesterday, I participated in the 123rd running of the Boston Marathon. Not as a runner mind you, but as a volunteer; specifically an amateur radio communications volunteer. Amateur radio is one of the three radio systems going during the Marathon, operating along aside public safety radios that are interoperable for the event and the commercial DMR radios that the Boston Athletic Association (BAA), the race organizers, have rented for the duration of the event.

There are various roles amateurs play at the Marathon and it is divided into four segments, Start, Course, Finish and Transport. Start and Finish work obviously the start and finish line. Course, which was the segment I was assigned to, is split among the hydration and medical stations along the course and Transport works the sweep buses to pick up runners who have dropped out. Course and Finish also have Net Control Operation Centers that serve as the focal point of relaying operations for their respective segments.

There are …

An update on W1OCY's treasure

Back in January, I posted about silent key ham W1OCY and his trove of old ham radio items plus other odds and ends that went undiscovered for 8-9 years in a warehouse in Peabody, Massachusetts.

I missed out on our club's February meeting due to work commitments, but got an update at our club's March meeting.

At the time, we hadn't sold anything, but now I can report, that we've sold a lot of stuff and made a nice profit for the club, which is important because we just installed a UHF DMR repeater through the New England Digital Emergency Communications Network (NEDECN).

We're still not done, I have still have some of the books in storage as do others. If you need more information or are just interested, email me here.