the adage goes, “Experience is the best teacher.” And oh, so much can be learned from the experiences of others. These are the stories and After Action Reviews (AARs) of those who participated in T-Rex 2015. Many successes, plenty of failures, and life experience gained. More will be added and more are continuing to come in. The rest will be added to a T-Rex Testiomonial and AAR Page that we will be creating and adding new AARs to over the next week, with the newest on top. Thank you all for training. Be safe, and be blessed! -JJS
Be sure to check out the running journal that an AmRRON operator kept before and during the developments, as she shared her thoughts an experiences while going through T-Rex 2015: http://promisegarden.blogspot.com/
T-Rex started at 0900AM, and there was no way to participate until after work. I made a B-line up into the Sierras, because this year was going to be different. The 2014 exercise I played at it from the comfort of my own home, base station up and more conveniences than a grid down scenario. 2015 was going to be different. I decided to give it my all, and went completely off grid and better than that, I bugged out. Kiss to the wife (thinks a 5150 may be in order), OTD. With my 72 hour BOB, mobile HF and VHF/UHF rig, J-pole for 2m, OCF 6 band dipole, and backup Buddipole, I set out into the woods to a previously reconned peak at 7377’ elevation. Two LiPo 8400’s with solar panel and charging system, Signal Link USB and tablet, check. CCW with two spare mags, check. Let’s do this!
Ominous rain clouds ahead and wait for it… Let’s have some thunder. I’ve now got one mile to hike from my vehicle, to my T-Rex 2015 SOTA peak, when the cats and dogs show up. BOB, rain poncha where it should be, adorned. BOB weighs in at 35 lbs. Comms bag with the whole setup, another 20 lbs. Decisions. SOTF (shift on the fly) approach, grab vinyl tarp, radio bag and Buddipole bag and depart. I hit the peak in under 20 mins, excellent. Moderate rain dictates that tarp goes up in a V-tent config to keep comms gear dry. Buddipole up for the 20m 0200Z EmComm and I’ve got time to spare with the battery config and Yaesu 857D up. The wait starts. Fifteen minutes in and no voice traffic. No CQ AMRRON response, prep for digital comms. Config done, rotate to 14.110MHz USB, wait. Nothing. Rotate Buddipole 20m and run scan check, got a signal on 20m just not digital comms as outlined. Decision time. Make a go to the BOV, retrieve BOB, recon campsite and reconfigure to 40M on Yaesu for the Mountain voice broadcast, 0400Z. Light distant traffic, attempt CQ, no joy. Pacific voice, same result. J-pole up for 2m in three minutes, broadcast CQ, notta, attempt 2m digital, zip. Let’s analyze. Antenna likely the issue, as the transition from 20m to 40m requires different setup with whips and height, so says the PDF I’ve saved on the tablet. Got it. It’s dark and the rain has stopped. Tent goes up, bag goes in, Mountain House receives boiling water and we wait till the 0800Z to repeat the process. One contact on the voice, has no traffic to report, digital comms with no result. Sleep sounds good.
Up in AM for morning 20m net, with strategy change; Buckmaster OCF dipole gets strung up running roughly E/W (I’ll pay for that later). AMRRON operator out of Virginia on voice, woohoo! No traffic to report either way. I’m four nets into this and I’ve got bupkis! Cold left over Mountain House lasagne but hot coffee hits the spot. Decide to round trip to BOV, retrieve 18’ Buddipole mast for committed 40m config and will work the 20m on the OCF Buckmaster.
Mid-day net, priority traffic to be passed on voice, can not make it out. Going to digital. WTH? Still poor digital performance, but was working just fine in a field check dry run on the regional August 5 net. Can hear better 40m signal, but no text on Rx window. Throw out a FLDIDI CQ digital which shows up on my screen but, but no traffic received or responded. Suddenly a digital message from an Extra class comes through and has me stay off band until EmComm priority passes. Thanks and WilCo as I now have a contact nine minutes into the net. I get no traffic so nothing to pass. I throw out a 2m net CQ and announce standing by for traffic. Within the minute, I’ve got a mobile HAM in Washoe County thirty miles away that responds and wants to know more about the exercise. Before you know it, I’m QSY’d to their daily net, and they have me give them an AMRRON overview. Seven stations agree to visit the site to learn more, grateful for the traffic.
Evening and early morning nets go with only one digital traffic message copied. Work as relay for checkins after remembering to switch between the two HF antennas for the best reception. Note, SWR meter registering higher that I would like. Morning net goes similar, only three voice contacts. More hot coffee and going to test drive freeze dried scrambled eggs with sausage. 1900Z and it’s in the books. Solar hot shower (less than hot) and a good shave. Time for an honest after action assessment.
What I learned: Just because your settings worked before doesn’t mean something hasn’t changed. I now remember that I have two copies of FLDIGI on WinBook and I’ve been alternating between one that has microphone and playback properly configured to USB Audio Codec, and one that does not. Note to self….you get it. On antennas, OCF Buckmaster would have been better configured in the field N/S for 20m national work. Buddipole rotates and that is a plus, but best contacts were received NVIS so that needs to assessed. A portable (HF Antenna Tuner for Amateur Radio Tranceiver) would be a great asset for field work.
I got a lot out of the exercise even though I was short on traffic. I now have a good list of things to work through, have a better understanding of my equipment, and will seek out more practice time. Perhaps VOA digital net will be a focus until it’s second nature. Oh, yeah, delete that extra copy of FLDIGI to prevent redundancy.
Listened to the RFR podcast back at the BOV. Great analysis. Glad I was not alone in some of my experiences, and reinforced my action plan. Thanks for offering to do quarterly exercises/practice nets as I intend to be on my game by then. JJS, thanks for putting on and coordinating all the NCS’s for T-Rex 2015. I’m even more grateful now that I have heard our group on the air albeit spotty.
In closing, hats off to Mountain House! Their chili was the bomb, but next year, I’m going to bring some freeze dried cheddar cheese. Time to clean up the gear, inventory and replenish BOB, clean up BOV and get back on the air. God bless all!
P.S. Cell contact with wife, she can’t wait to hear all about it. Still married. Box checked.
Great exercise! I was on air for every 6 hr window except the early Sun morning one. I ran local 2-m nets after the HF nets, for our local St. Louis/St. Charles MO Oath Keepers chapter. But I also met 2 NEW AmRRON operators on air that I had not yet met! I served as impromptu relay for JJS on Sat evening’s 20m net in very tough band conditions. That was good practice. “Mike” sound an awful lot like “Five”… I suggested we use the format “number one, letter Mike” instead of simply “1-Mike” for message numbers. Improvise!
I operated my station all weekend on battery & solar.
– Digital is king in tough band conditions
– Custom forms often have ‘chksum’ failures, but u can still copy much of it… Even if the form won’t open, I cut and pasted the Fldigi text into Notepad and manually transcribed the field numbers later
– Delta-04 demonstrated how to be very concise and use abbreviations as NCS
– No way 1 operator could keep up that pace for an extended period
Thanks for all you guys do!!
On 8/10/2015 7:53 AM, wrote:
From: xxxx (in California)
Subject: T-rex 2015
Were there any operators relaying information in Southern California during T-Rex? I’m still new to HAM and haven’t gotten a large set up and running yet so I was using my 2m , 70 cm and gmrs and didn’t pick up anything. The silence was disconcerting and it’s something I’m going to want to remedy.
Much of the traffic was being passed over HF, so a shortwave radio with Single Sideband would have picked that up. There are a lot of stations in California, but we have no way of knowing who was passing which traffic over local 2m/70cm bands. The community 50 miles away may have been extremely active, while it may have been quiet in your area. It really depends on the level of participation in each local community.
The traffic was definitely being passed for anyone to reach out and grab it if they were hungry enough (and had invested in the capabilities and knowledge) for information. Another thing also, is that we learned some of the HF operators were so busy handling traffic on HF, they neglected 2m and CH3. That is something we want to work to remedy as an organization as well. Thanks for being out there!
AAR from Bravo Charlie-08
I participated in T-REX 2015 on my family’s BOL which is in central Missouri (also my deer hunting grounds so I got a little scouting in). The area xxxxxxx xxxxxis where we made camp because while it is at a lower elevation, it has great natural antenna supports (abundance of oak and walnut trees) and it was relatively flat ground with the river approximately 30 yards from our tent.
AmRRON operator Belton Patriot and AmRRON Corps operator Bravo Charlie-08
Equipment (relevant to radio communications):
- Icom Ic-7200 All Band Hf
- Alpha Antenna EZ Military with NVIS kit
- Alpha Antenna 34” magnetic loop (40-10)
- 53 Foot End-Fed 80-6M antenna
- LDG AT-200Pro II for IC-7200
- LDG Z-817 tuner for 517ND
- Yamaha 2,000 Watt Generator
(for charging marine battery)
- 20 meter Dipole in tree
- 40 meter Dipole in tree
- 2 BaoFeng UV5R Hand Held set to FRS freq so BP and I could communicate quasi-legally
- Alpha Delta 4 antenna switch (for IC-7200)
- Marine Deep Cycle 86 Amp Hour Battery
- Battery Charger (smart technology)
- 2 Goal Zero 41022 Guide 10 Plus Solar Recharging Kit and battery chargers (for charging AA and AAA batteries for flashlights/head lamps)
- Winbook 7” with Bluetooth keyboard (used for digital communications).
- SignaLink USB Soundcard
- This was my first T-Rex where I actually was able to respond and not just monitor, so I was really looking forward to this event. Murphy showed up on many occasions including killing the phone bands from solar activity, but digital came booming in. In addition, because of my location, we were under a heat advisory because the temp only dropped to around 83 overnight and the heat index was 105 yesterday BUT, we were camping by a river so there were frequent dips into the river to cool off—plus we had a great fish fry last night from the bluegill and crappie that we caught between the nets.
- Because of our physical location, I oriented our antennas towards the American Redoubt and the Southern Redoubt and setup our NVIS antenna to light up the sky in the mid-west. After the second voice net, we made the determination that digital was going to be our focus because that gave us the ability to utilize a minimum amount of power for the maximum amount of communications possibility (it takes a lot of power to make a voice call compared to digital).
- I believe the radio highlight of the weekend was when I worked a 40m digital signal on 5W with an operator in Idaho. I made a CQ call on the 517 with my Winbook and received an immediate reply from an AmRRON operator in Idaho. It had the “cool” factor because it was 40 meters on 5WATTS to an operator 1,700 miles away with a 100% copy. I would expect that on 20M but not necessarily on 40M.
- I quickly realized that T-Rex was “field day” for patriots. It appeared that people were just monitoring the designated frequencies regardless if there was a scheduled net or not. I received a lot of “welfare” checks from other AmRRON operators who knew of my intended plans and were checking on my status…they were always checking on the AmRRON frequencies.
Areas of Improvement:
- I checked in with my nephew (as I was traveling home) who is an AmRRON Corps operator and he said the area 2M nets were dead all weekend. I submitted a NCS form to get a 2M net started in my area so perhaps this will improve in the future. I have noticed as Hams get their General ticket that they ignore the local area—similar to how “real” missionaries are those who go overseas and we ignore those in our backyard. While I am guilty because I setup and focused on HF, I can only imagine that there were a lot of Tech licensed hams who were listening to dead silence. I can only hope that it was different in other areas but this is a situation that I will take on to improve in my area.
- One person cannot be the sole operator for a group/family/neighborhood. I am dog tired and while I REALLY enjoyed the weekend, it is too much for even 2 people to keep up on all the traffic. In my situation, I had my brother-in-law (non-Ham) monitor the traffic as I caught cat naps. We also had two stations (one on the 20M digital and one on the 40M digital) and while we could scroll back through the traffic to see what we missed, if there was a flash or priority traffic, we could have missed it. Like security, you need designated people to monitor but only for 4-6 hour shifts.
I’m adding these items to a list so I don’t forget in the future…
- Motor Oil for generator—this is the only item where I “cheated” and went to a local gas station to pick up some 30W oil because while this is an exercise in grid down communications, I didn’t want to trash my generator for the sake of the exercise.
- Bring 2X the amount of coffee/caffeinated drinks that you think that you would drink. While I was able to pass the time by making new contacts at all hours of the day, my companion (who could not key-up) was stuck with just monitoring.
- Need to buy a LCD display for the voltage on my 12V battery. It was a bad situation when I am in the middle of receiving traffic when the radio goes dead because the battery is depleted. A $10 part kept me off the air during a scheduled net because the battery discharged too much.
- Need to include mechanical pencils in the kit because I was digging through the glove box when the ink pen gave out. In addition, with the humid conditions, I would think that pencil would work better for taking notes.
- I need to add a mouse (yet another <$10 purchase) to the QRP Winbook setup. I had to use my finger for moving along the waterfall which was not the easiest/most accurate thing to do.
- Need to include spare barrel connector for coax in the kti because the first placement of the NVIS antenna was about 18” too far for where I had the radios setup.
- TEST YOUR GEAR!!! I had an issue with my recently purchased Winbook that I had to return and replace a few days prior to T-Rex. I neglected to download the new fldigi forms—I could have “cheated” and driven to a wifi hotspot about 18 miles away (McDonalds) but I was able to interpret the forms without them.
- Mrs. BC-08 either needs to get her HF license OR I need to setup a listening station for her at home. It was a bit of a pain to drive up towards the entrance of the driveway (again, 2 miles on a private gravel road) to get a cell signal to just send an “all is well” text message.
- Copper pipe to drive into ground for grounding HF radios.
- Anderson Power pole junction box—need to have the ability to connect multiple HF rigs to one power source. While the battery might gripe at two rigs transmitting at the same time, monitoring would not be an issue.
- Need to have replacement Anderson Power Poles for when a connection gets smashed in a car door—also need to include the Anderson Power Pole crimping tool—that darn Murphy!
This was a great weekend—again, it was like field day for patriots. While I was working various stations I had this thought—would it be possible to designate a quarterly “mini-trex” without the scenario based exercise? In other words, could we designate a Saturday where AmRRON operators could call out to the listed freqs and there would most likely be an AmRRON operator on the same freq? Just a thought—because like field day, you are almost likely to hear someone return your call.
Quote of the weekend for BP–“I’m use to ruling the night but digital rules 24/7/360”
I participated in T-Rex 2015 with my group this past weekend. I just recently acquired HF capabilities and was really excited to be able to be a part of the exercise. But every time I listened in on the frequencies at the allotted times, all I heard was static. However, when my group held our 2 meter nets, there was one of us who always had messages to pass to us. He got all the information, all I got was static! What’s up with that???
Well, I’ve heard you say it many, many times. But I didn’t truly understand it until I experienced it for myself. Digital gets through when nothing else does. My teammate who always had the information had digital capabilities, and I did not.
This was truly an eye opening experience. I pledge to be HF digital capable by T-Rex 2016!
Thanks for everything,
Just wanted to drop a note on how my weekend went.
I’m really trying to hit this radio stuff with some energy and this exercise just fell in line with a family camping trip that was already planned. So, I packed my radio and went to the field. I knew I would be behind the power curve since I have not been able to get any digital up and going but as I am only a HAM – Tech I would not be able to pass on much anyways from the woods. I did allow me some great training on putting up all my portable stuff. So I got out to the field (Cougar WA) on Thursday and set up and got on
the air for the Thursday comms check in. Nice little area but in a serious valley floor.
Everything went well. I got my Buddy Pole antenna set up and tuned up and was able to dial in. I heard a couple of AmRRON folks on 40 meter but it was really an Indy race DX. But it came in nice an clear and I was “ready” for Friday.
That was the last clear comms except for a couple of Asian broadcasts for the whole weekend. I could kind of hear folks talking all day long just could not understand any words.
I was unable to CQ anyone on 2M either but I could not hit any repeaters either. I did learn that my portable batteries could have carried me through all weekend for just comm check in. But since I monitored about 12 hours every day I was able to plug in my solar panels and verify that they worked also.
I did get a chance to read the SOI pretty thoroughly and one question that I have — as a tech is why is there not any 6 meter or 10 meter ? Next step is to get a windows computer and get up digital. Sunday’s podcast was good to hear that it was not totally me that could not get voice up and going.
Thanks everyone for your hard work. Looking forward to continue on the road of preparedness.
1) BLUF (Bottom Line Up Front) – More challenging than T-REX 2014, primarily due to poor, and at times very strange, band conditions.
However, I possibly caught a lucky break in trying to decipher this year’s word.
2) BLUF Part B – I suspect that the word is either MAGNANIMOUS OR MAGNANIMITY or that some variation thereof is incorporated into the “mystery phrase.” How I arrived at this conclusion will be covered below.
3) My Friday start played well into getting me psychologically ready for T-REX: violent thunderstorms on Thursday night caused intermittent power failures into Friday. To further unintentionally replicate grid down conditions, a water main break left me on stored water for the first ten hours of T-REX. Needless to say, no electricity and no shower in Georgia in early September had me contemplating jumping in the creek out back, if only for odor management.
4) Band conditions already noted, but very shocked to have JJS at 59+ on both Friday and Saturday nights on 20m in 0400Z time frame.
5) I chose not to activate the Georgia Regional Net for two reasons:
- it became clear early on that local 40m band conditions were notconducive; I was rarely able to make contact with/copy Delta-04 (approx 115 air miles distant) and thus determined that odds of holding a successful net were quite slim, and 2. I simply did not have the capacity to be on the radio that much between fatigue and real world obligations. This actually worked to my advantage, as it did enable me to collect more traffic from other nets. However, I will work with D-04 to expand membership in GA so that in the future multiple NCSs are available to increase net coverage.
6) I discovered that while I had no problems passively receiving multiple mode traffic; i.e. MSFK32 traffic usually populated and opened correctly using AmRRON Forms; I realized that I had never actually constructed and transmitted a message utilizing FLMSG. I crash-coursed myself on the process and successfully transmitted both MSG 27 and MSG 49 via FLDIGI. However, I still have no idea how to transmit an image. I need to learn the software more deeply.
7) I need to adjust my station setup. I like to keep hard copies of messages; I can rifle through pages and find what I am looking for faster than I can scroll or search in on a computer. However, I’m utilizing a Windows tablet to run digital and it is not connected to my printer. As a result, I was having to save messages to a thumb drive and then transfer them to another computer in order to print.
While this may seem prima facie to be a minor inconvenience, as the hours wore on and fatigue began to set in, this minor detail began to create confusion (click to save, can’t find the thumb drive, it’s in the other computer) and thus annoyance and more fatigue.
8) Two observations regarding the AmRRON html forms: 1) when printing, extended messages will get cut off; e.g. if there is an long text body in a SITREP form, the complete text will transfer to FLMSG and be transmitted, but if you print the same message, it will be cut off, and 2) the instructions at the bottom of the SITREP form should have a “hide” or “remove” capability/function; I have a large stack of paper with partial instructions printed on them.
9) Due to the crazy propagation, I was able to monitor and copy a list of message numbers held by JJS (hey, you were transmitting them, so I copied them down!); I subsequently was able to pass this information along to Delta-04. This allowed East Coast to get an idea of how message traffic was flowing and what gaps were held in message receipt on this side of the country. Additionally, it provided me with enough information to get at least a partial decoding of the mystery word.
1) Monitoring of nets outside of Time Zone Region. This greatly enhanced the number of messages copied.
2) “Grid Down” conditions. If I’m able, next time I will attempt to conduct a partial or full bugout during T-REX.
3) Patience and coffee. These are the two items that kept me in the game, though I’m not sure which was more useful.
1) Shack/Equipment setup. I need create a flowchart of routine message handling functions to ensure that I streamline my shack for more efficient ops.
2) Knowledge of software functionality. If I don’t know how to use all of it, I don’t know how to use any of it.
Messages copied – 23
I could have copied at least 9 more messages, but the sender nor NCS did not announce that the message was being sent in another mode than Contesia 4/250 as indicated by the SOI. Due to the band conditions, my FLDIGI did not auto pick the op mode and therefore had to be manually entered. I did copy partial messages and images in MFSK16, MFSK 32, and Olivia 4/250. A heads up by the NCS would have helped greatly.
The NCS did a pretty good job of trying to select messages listed priority Or higher, but they did not try a lot of the times to determine the message ID prior to message being transmitted. Therefore, I had 4 messages with 90 % plus copy, but no ID number (they could possibly be additional contest IDs).
I also noticed that NCS and message senders had a tendency to drift off of the 1200 waterfall, some as much as 1300. I also noticed the NCS shifted to 800, 600, and 1800 waterfalls as needed.
The message scenarios were really great and presented a logical emergency situation. You all put a fantastic effort in the exercise. Kudos to all. The rolling nets seemed to work better than the situation in 2014.
The use of relay stations really helped due to the bad band conditions.
Keep up the great work. 73
For this year’s T-Rex exercise I decided to try to go off-grid. I managed to borrow enough equipment to set up a small solar array that could power my radio and laptop for the weekend, and this worked well. (See my write-up on the AC forum for more details on that.) I also used a new Netbook (a cheap ~$200 unit that originally came with Windows 8), freshly-upgraded to Windows 10 which was mainly chosen for its low power consumption. (It has a 20W power brick and a 7.5W TDP CPU.)
I went into the event excited to see what I could do with my current setup as last year at this time I did not yet have my 43′ vertical up and running. This excitement would wane a bit as the exercise went on due to the extremely hostile band conditions. I had already decided before it began that I wouldn’t spend much effort on voice nets and would instead focus on the digital nets. This was mainly due to the power limitations imposed by my off-grid power source that limited me to ~50W of output power, but it soon became obvious that I wouldn’t be heard on voice even if I was running the full 100W power my radio can put out.
I had hoped that the digital modes would be robust enough to produce error-free copy even in the noisy conditions, but this was rarely the case. Sometimes the bands weren’t quite as noisy and I could get an error-free message via MFS32 or Olivia but that wasn’t usually the case. I found that static crashes would often corrupt the messages at key moments and would obscure place names or message numbers, so I asked for retransmissions from time to time to get better copies of some messages.
The Friday night net wasn’t too bad, I was able to copy a few messages and request retransmissions. Once it was over I tried to get some sleep before the 0800Z nets. The Saturday early morning nets (0800Z) were a total bust as I couldn’t hear any stations. I went back to sleep instead as I knew that it would be important to be as rested as possible.
The daytime Saturday nets had band conditions that were, if anything, even worse than the night before. I was able to send my overnight message traffic in the morning nets, something I was glad to be able to get done. Around midday I heard very few stations of any kind as I tuned around the bands as conditions took a turn for the worse.
On the other hand, my solar array was working very well to replenish the battery power used the night before, as there was full sun for most of the day.
Saturday evening I had another message to send (with accompanying image) but I wasn’t able to send it until late in one of the regional nets. (I had planned to send it on the afternoon nets but band conditions didn’t allow for it.) By then I’m not sure how much relevance it would’ve had in a real-world situation but at least I got it out. I asked one of the net controls for a list of messages received (hoping to populate the contest word and see what fills I needed) but he didn’t have such a list compiled and said he’d have one at the late night net (0800Z) that night. I had planned to get that list from him but was not able to, as I woke up before that net to find a lightning storm in the area. I really didn’t want to stress-test my lightning arrestor so I left the radio off and went back to sleep.
That was the end of the exercise for me as I had church to attend in the morning, and by the time I got back home the exercise would just about be over.
The solar power system
The new netbook
Other equipment (radio, battery-powered LED light etc.)
What didn’t work:
The HF bands
My disorganized message filing system (toward the end I took to just saving large unedited fldigi buffers to text files for later analysis while keeping track in a notebook of which message numbers I had)
Noise reduction systems in my radio (they were totally inadequate for the task)
What I’ll try to improve on for next time:
Find a way to run multiple copies of fldigi simultaneously, as there were times when there were three or four digital nets happening simultaneously on the same waterfall – the active net and the previous nets that were still doing message fills. It would’ve been nice to be able to decode all of those sessions simultaneously to copy more messages.
Decide on a method to organize message traffic so it’s easier to tell which messages I have and which ones I still need. Copying and pasting from the fldigi buffer sort of worked but was cumbersome. When flmsg recognized a message this happened automatically, but there was so much noise that the flwrap headers/footers were often corrupted to the point where flmsg didn’t recognize it.
Overall it was a good experience. I hope that these horrible band conditions aren’t indicative of what we can expect in the coming years but I think there’s a chance that they are since we’re past the best part of this solar cycle.
I had borrowed a VHF/UHF Duplexer for the exercise thinking I would have my MURS and GMRS radios going simultaneously off of my 2m/70cm base antenna to listen for CH3 traffic, but I never quite got set up for it. Since there’s never been any CH3 traffic in this area that I know of (I’m the only AmRRON member within a ~50-mile radius) it wasn’t a high priority for me. For the same reason there was no point in listening on 2m or 70cm either. I hope to get SSB CB capability soon, but since that will be sharing my 43′ vertical antenna I wouldn’t have been able to run it simultaneously anyway.
When it was all over I remember regretting that I wasn’t able to assemble the contest word, so I was glad to hear in the podcast that nobody else did either. Now I just need to go through my notes (and some of those unprocessed fldigi buffer files) to see if I can scrape up 4 letters of the contest word. (I know I have three but I don’t know if I can find a fourth.)
We had fun!! I hope and pray that it will always be fun. I figured out that I need to get in some message handling traffic practice. Also need to fix some “housekeeping” here in my Shack. I have a 12X20 outdoor shed that I wired, insulated and have heat/AC too. I need to plumb it with water. And make a kitchen and bathroom. It makes it too hard to have to go to the house for something to drink or to use the bathroom. A couple of other things came to mind, there should be a “backbone” of some sort to be able to pass messages to each time zone and pass on. Maybe there is and I dont know about it. Also in a REAL situation, National voice and/or digital should be monitored 24/7.
The net controls that I dealt with, AC4xx and KK4xxx, did great!! It would never have worked without them. I only heard [National AmRRON NCS] twice I think. I think he heard me once. Band conditions were poor. I appreciate and applaud all who helped and participated. If something ever happens, we will prevail.
God Bless and take care.
JJ, I would like to give my brief AA report. I was out of town during the weekend of T Rex which worked out great because I only had my Get Home supplies with me. Equipment used was Midland CB and County Comm GP- 5 / SSB Shortwave Radio. and S O I. I was in the Spartanburg SC area @ a softball tourn. with my Family, which was a great exercise in its self. Consulting the SOI ( 7242 ) we did not copy any Amrron Broadcast until late Fri Night (EDT). I could Not Copy any Amrron broadcast Sat or Sun on 7242, but was able to Copy Someone doing a special Event broadcast from the Indianapolis Speedway loud and clear all weekend long. I was Not able to receive anyone on Ch 3 cb. We learned that we need to do much more to improve our Comms.
Thanks for the Hard Work,
Romeo Lima 02