Recent Aricles - see left and below
11/15 Dec 5 Program: DFMA Christmas Party
11/11 Supporting the Bouvet Island DXpedition
10/22 Nov 7 Program: Restoration of a 50's AM Xmitter
9/27 Oct 3 Program: Show and Tell
8/29 Sep 5 Program: Vanity Calls - How To
8/09 DFMA Group Purchase from Ed Fong - WB6IQN
8/02 DFMA Officers Elected
7/27 Aug 1 Meeting: Show & Tell --- Elections
7/02 July 18 Program: A Tri-Band Antenna
6/27 The July Meeting is not Until July 18!
6/21 Field Day is Just About Here
5/31 June 6 Program: Field Day 2017
5/25 Duke Harrison, K2MZ, sk
5/21 DurHamFest 2017 is Almost Here!
5/03 A Joint DFMA/OCRA Mail Reflector
4/30 What has Happened to dfma.org?
4/25 May 2 Meeting Program: DurHamFest
December 5 Program: DFMA Christmas Party
We are continuing a tradition of having the DFMA pick up the tab for members at our December Christmas Dinner Meeting. The festivities will be at Bullock's Barbecue Restaurant in Durham starting at 6:00 p.m. You will be able to order from the menu. Members can bring one guest — bring your spouse or friend!
This is our Christmas Meeting — In that tradition you may (optionally):
- Bring a Christmas gift to be distributed to needy children through Toys for Tots. If wrapped, mark gender and age range on the outside. If not wrapped, that's fine too. If you have one — a gift bag would work too.
Make a donation. The Club will make its annual Christmas gift, splitting
it between the Food Bank of North Carolina
and the Durham Rescue Mission. We will be passing the "hat" for
personal contributions. Cash contributions will also be split between
the two organizations.
In past years some people have dropped a check in the hat. You can make it out to any charity you like. We can forward it and the cancelled check can be handy at tax time.
But, if you are not in a position to donate anything this year, please come anyway. Or if you are making a special effort through your church or at the office, don’t feel pressured to do more than you really should. Your presence at this dinner is a gift to all of us.
Since this is our annual Christmas Party we won’t have a program as usual. However, we will continue the fun tradition of soliciting “Ham New Year’s Resolutions.” Please join us for some wonderful holiday fellowship.
- Dee, KU4GC 11/15/17
Supporting the Bouvet Island DXpedition
At recent DFMA, OCRA board & club meetings, interest has been expressed by members to provide some level of contribution toward the upcoming Bouvet Island DXpedition planned for early next year. The budget for this DXpedition is three quarters of a million dollars. Participants must each contribute $17,000 or their own money. There have been many contributions, corporate sponsors, etc., but they are still approximately $100,000 short of their funding goal.
The Durham FM Association and Orange County Radio Amateur clubs will facilitate member donations and provide a matching contribution up to a maximum total of $200 from each club. Club treasurers will forward member and matching donations to the Bouvet Island effort.
To make a donation through the DFMA to the Bouvet Island Expedition
Give a check to the DFMA Treasurer or send a check indicating a donation for the Bouvet Expedition to the following address:
Bouvet Island Expedition Donation
c/o Durham FM Association
P.O. Box 2411
Durham, NC 27715
To make a donation through OCRA to the Bouvet Island Expedition
Present to the OCRA Treasurer or send a check indicating a donation for the Bouvet Expedition to the following address:
Bouvet Island Expedition Donation
c/o Orange County Radio Amateurs, Inc
P.O. Box 295
Carrboro, NC 27510
Donation to OCRA by Credit Card or PayPal
can be made by going to the OCRA website, NCOCRA.org and using
its link to PayPal.
Donations by members should be completed by December 11th.
73, Dan, KR4UB 11/18/17
November 7 Program: Restoration of a 50's Homebrew AM Transmitter
John, KX4P, has completed restoration of a 1950s home-brew AM transmitter. It was designed and constructed by one of John's "Elmers" that introduced him to amateur radio and a career in electronics. The transmitter is typical of many Ham radio stations of the era. It is constructed from radio/TV repair and WW II surplus parts, and from ARRL Handbook articles. Plus, it really worked!
Reconstruction was a challenge as there were no instructions, schematics or parts list to go with the unit. In addition, one of the critical chassis had gone up in smoke (literally - caught fire) !
The presentation shows reconstruction from start to finish. Short movies are included demonstrating CW and AM phone operation.
Even as a new ham, you will appreciate and enjoy learning about a piece of our amateur radio history that many others in our club have experienced !
- John, KX4P 10/22/17
October 3 Program: Show and Tell
The program is the always fun and informative Show – and – Tell. Please
bring something of interest and plan on spending about 5 minutes talking
- Chuck, KW4KZ 9/26/17
September 5 Program: Vanity Calls - How To
Our speaker for September 5th will be DFMA member Tad Danley K3TD. He will speak about the vanity call program and what calls are about to be released.
For his background, Tad reports:
First licensed in 1972 as a Technician, WA3TGR, while a student in
high school. Upgraded to Advanced in the '80s when the 'new'
current call sign structure was implemented and received KB3PF.
Upgraded to Extra in the '90s to assist as a Volunteer Examiner and
received NZ3I. Received my current call in '96 in Gate 2 of the
Vanity call sign program
Primary interests are anything to do with 50 MHz, HF and VHF
contesting, stealth antennas and helping new hams get started in any
of these activities including how to get a Vanity call
- Chuck, KW4KZ 8/29/17
DFMA Group Purchase from Ed Fong - WB6IQN
At our July meeting, Ed Fong, WB6IQN, presented a program where he discussed his antenna designs and his latest triband antenna.
At the end of his presentation he listed a few items that he is selling and suggested he would pick up the shipping for group orders.
The two items that seemed to attract the most interest are his triband antenna, TBJ-1, for $60 and an HF SSB handheld SDR based receiver, the GP5/SSB, for $60.
Chuck, KW4KZ, has agreed to coordinate the group purchase. When compiled, he will send off the order with a DFMA check. You can then make your payments to the DFMA. Chuck’s email address is
chanoia33 at gmail point com
Please email me as soon as possible, latest by Friday, August 25th. This should give us a chance to have the orders available at the September 5th DFMA club meeting.
Below are some more details on these two items.
TBJ-1 triband base antenna
2m/220 MHz/70 cm – $60 -
includes shipping with 6ft of pvc pipe.
The latest and best portable handheld HF SSB receiver in the world.
Fully software defined using the SiLabs 4734 DSP chip.
Has software defined product detector and DSP SSB filters for true LSB and USB. 450 memories
$60 - Stereo earphones, external AM ferrite antenna, external shortwave antenna, soft carrying pouch, and user manual
Frequency Coverage –
MW/ AM: 520 – 1710 kHz (10K tuning step )
SW: 1.7-30 MHz AM/SSB/CW (with DSP SSB filters)
LW: 150 – 522 kHz AM/SSB/CW
FM: 76 – 108 MHz – stereo
Displays ambient temperature in Fahrenheit or Celsius
Operating time: 225 hrs at 40% Volume
Ed's entire set of slides for his talk are available in PDF form by pressing
the link below. This gives more information on the products mentioned above
and at the very end lists some other items that can be purchased.
Ed Fong - DFMA Talk 2017
For more information on Ed’s antennas see his website:
- Chuck, KW4KZ 8/9/17
DFMA Officers Elected
At the August meeting, elections followed the recommndations of the
nominating committee headed by Skip, WB4P. Elected (mostly re-elected) were:
President – Dee (KU4GC),
Vice President – Chuck (KW4KZ),
Treasurer – M.K. (W4MKR),
Secretary – Dan (KR4UB),
Repeater Manager – Charlie (NC4CD),
Board Member – Paul (N2XZF) and
Board Member – David (KW4XL).
Thanks to the outgoing board members Mark (KR3AM) and Michael (KK4EIB) for
their years of service. Karen (KD4YJZ) and John (KM4MDR) will serve the
second year of their terms.
- Dee, KU4GC 8/2/17
August 1 Meeting: Show & Tell --- Elections
We will first hold our yearly election of Board of Director Officers
and At-Large Members. The nominating committee has proposed:
President – Dee Ramm (KU4GC)
Vice President – Chuck Anoia (KW4KZ)
Treasurer – M.K. Ramm (W4MKR)
Secretary – Dan Eddleman (KR4UB)
Repeater Manager – Charlie Durst (NC4CD)
At-Large Member Candidates (in alphabetical order)
Paul Robertson (N2XZF)
David Vielbaum (KW4XL)
Nominations from the floor are welcome.
That will only take a few minutes so we will have
time for the always fun and informative Show & Tell. Please bring
something of interest and plan on spending about 5 minutes talking about
- Dee, KU4GC 7/27/17
July 18 Program: A Tri-Band Antenna
Ed Fong, WB6IQN,
will join us again from California via
Skype. Ed last joined us in November
2015 to discuss his dual-band J-Pole
antenna. This month Ed will talk about
his tri-band antenna design. Ed is
currently on the faculty of UC Santa Cruz
and has had several antenna articles
published in both QST and CQ
- Dee, KU4GC 7/2/17
The July Meeting is not Until July 18!
Ever since we've been meeting at Bullock's BBQ, we have had to handle
July differently. As long as I can remember, Bullock's has closed for
two weeks including July 4th. For several years, we used an alternate
site to meet in July, but as our attendence has grown we no longer fit
there and scheduling turned out to be awkward there as well.
The simplest solution turned out to be meeting on the third Tuesday of
the month in July. Note that this is the time slot for the DFMA
Board Meeting. So, the regular Board meeting has been cancelled with
the understanding that we can have a quick meeting just before the regular
meeting if something important comes up. More in the July Link. (Just read
- Dee, KU4GC 6/27/17
Field Day is Just About Here.
If you haven't taken steps
yet to be involved, let me give this one last try.
Our collaboration with the Orange County club has been
extremely productive. Our joint Field Day efforts have put
us into the top ten nationally year after year and #3 the last
two years. And this, again, is a case where we can really
get to know people by working together.
The set up on Friday is something I highly recommend for
all members, but especially newer members. There are
well-defined things that need to be done and many of the
jobs absolutely require several people working closely
together (raising a tower comes to mind). Even with
no previous experience you will be prompted in
how to do what is needed and meanwhile you will
learn a lot and get to know your club members (and
the few active OCRA members who are not also
DFMA members) better.
That evening, the potluck dinner will be another fun
event where you can meet other hams and often,
their spouses or friends as well. It also helps our
significant others get to know the ham radio hobby
better and in a very positive and delicious light.
Finally, do some operating. Here is a chance to try
out HF operation with ready help from others. Often
you can start by just watching and listening. Then you
can help out by just logging, but you’ll quickly
see how it works and soon you’ll be on the air.
Working with others, you will be able to work with
only a Tech license (or even none
if you are still
working on your first license.) Again, working together
(with someone with an Extra class license) is
how to move forward.
It's not too late to get involved. For setup, just show up
on Friday and make known that you are there to help.
For operation on Saturday and Sunday, go to one of the
stations and watch and listen.
If not invited to get more involved, ask if you can be of help.
If things don't look promising, try another station.
If your time is really limited, feel free to just come by
for a while and be impressed. It's that kind of event.
(For more information, click the Field Day button on the left.
This will provide more inormation, a site map, and more
info one food.)
Hope to see you this weekend.
- Dee, KU4GC 6/21/17
June 6 Program: Field Day 2017
In lieu of a regular program we will finalize our plans for the OCRA/DFMA
Field Day 2017. Dave (W4SAR), our Field Day Coordinator,
will lead the program.
We may have some time for some Show & Tell so
feel free to bring
something interesting to show and spend a few minutes talking about it.
Dee, KU4GC 5/31/17
PS: If you did not pick up your DFMA 2017 Directory
and Repeater Guide at DurHamFest (few did), pick it
up at the Tuesday meeting.
Duke Harrison, K2MZ, sk
Charles Harvey Harrison
(January 7, 1931 - May 13, 2017)
Charles Harvey “Duke” Harrison, 86, of Mebane died Saturday, May 13 at the
Hospice Home in Burlington. He was a native of Montclair, NJ, he was a
graduate of Rennesselaer Polytechnic Institute and Hofstra University. As
an engineer and patented inventor, he spent much of his career in the
medical equipment industry; as a passionate pilot, he was also a flight
instructor and chief judge for acrobatic contests. He never stopped
learning new skills, earning professional licensing in building,
refrigeration and airplane mechanics, a lifelong ham radio enthusiast and
extensive traveler, he enjoyed meeting new people all over the world. He
was a member of the First Presbyterian Church in Oyster Bay, NY and
attended the Mebane Presbyterian Church. He was preceded in death by his
parents, Marshall & Doris Street Harrison and the two great loves in his
life, his first wife, Martha Masland Harrison in 1982 and second wife,
Nancy Stevens Harrison on April 21, 2017.
He is survived by his children, David Marshall Harrison of Long Island,
NY, Thomas Parker Harrison of Los Angeles, CA and Eve Masland Harrison
Kossmann of Long Island, NY; step children, Allan Alva Dowds of Boston,
MA, John Stevens Dowds of Louisville, Ky and Timothy Whittlesey Dowds
of Mebane, NC; 12 grandchildren and a sister, Linda Harrison Buffett
of Albuquerque, NM.
Memorials may be made to Hospice and Palliative Care of Alamance/Caswell,
914 Chapel Hill Road, Burlington, NC 27215. Online condolences may be
sent to www.mcclurefuneralservice.net
Duke was an active member of the Durham FM Association and
usually attended the monthly meetings with his wife, Nancy.
Duke often brought intersting items for all to see when
we had "Show & Tell" meetings. Nancy passed away in April.
We will miss them both.
Most of the previous text was taken from the website of the
McClure Funeral Services of Graham, NC.
- KU4GC, 5/25/17
DurHamFest 2017 is Almost Here!
Saturday (and before that Friday) will be here before you know it. This year's DurhamFest will again be at our “new” location at the Durham Public Schools Staff Development Center. (See detailed instructions by pressing on the DurHamFest button on the left.) We can still use more help.
There is still time to let Jack, KM4MBG, our new Hamfest Chair, know that you are ready to sign up for specific tasks. Specific areas that can always use more help are: Parking, Food Sales, Club Table and Talk-In. You can mail Jack at durhamfest at km4mbg dot org to let him know you will be helping.
If you can not make a fixed time commitment, you can still just show up and help. Key times will be assisting with Friday evening setup from 6pm to 8pm. Then Saturday at 7am we’ll do final setup and, where needed, help vendors move in as well. During the event, you can help out where needed. Someone may need to take a break at would be thankful for even brief relief. Then at 12:30pm we’ll shut down and many hands will make the work go faster and seem much lighter.
And, even if you can’t find time to help, do drop in. Buy something. Say hello to some old friends and make some new ones. Have a free cup of coffee. Don’t miss Wilson’s (W4BOH) super hamburgers and hot dogs. Everyone can use a good lunch. We hope we'll see you there!
Dee, KU4GC 5/21/17
ps: The 2017 DFMA Directory will be available to pick up at the ticket table for DFMA members whose dues are current. Ask for your copy. (You can also renew your membership there if you forgot that earlier.)
A Joint DFMA/OCRA Mail Reflector
One of the more successful means of non-radio communication
among hams in this area has been the
OCRA email reflector: NCOCRA@yahoogroups.com. If
you subscribe to it, you receive everything that other
subscribers post as email. For quite some time, the
DFMA Board has discussed whether the DFMA needs
something similar. One approach would have been to
create a similar, but distinct, reflector (or mailing list) for
the DFMA. The problem with that is that we have many
joint members with OCRA and for many uses one
would have to post things twice, once on each list. This
would be particularly important at Field Day time when
we operate jointly. Also, when DurHamFest approaches,
or we need more participants for a public service event,
much of what we post would be aimed at OCRA members
The final result of this discussion and with approval of
both the OCRA Board and the DFMA Board is that the
DFMA will begin to use the NCOCRA reflector for
DFMA business as well. Renaming the group was discussed
but seems to be a problem with Yahoo resulting
in losing all historical records. There will be some efforts
in some of the other “labeling” to include the designation
of “DFMA” as well. (There has been some
discussion at OCRA to find a better email reflector
system, and if that takes place, the naming of the
new system would include “DFMA” as well as
So, if you are not already receiving the NCOCRA
mailing, here is how to sign up.
If you do not already have one, you must create a
Yahoo account (it’s free). If you so not want to
bother with a Yahoo Account, Dave Snyder, W4SAR, can
"enroll" you. Send him email with the email address you
want things sent to. His email address is w4sar01 at gmail dot com .
Since this is a private group, it is moderated. This
keeps out spammers, etc. This may delay your
initial application until the moderators have approved
you. You do not need to be an OCRA or
DFMA member to get on the list.
You ask, “Do I need to get involved in this?” The
short answer is “No”. If you are minimally involved
and generally limit your participation to
coming to meetings, you have survived so far
without the reflector. We will continue to email
The Link directly to you and this usually includes
a meeting reminder. However, if you want to
know what is going on in your local ham community,
following the postings on the reflector
will keep you in touch. Occasionally someone will
post something for sale, and sometimes these are
real bargains. Details on DurHamFest, Field Day,
Public Service and ARES events, etc. will all come
up on the reflector. So, the long answer is “No,
but we highly recommend it.” So now, if you have
something of interest to DFMA members or the
broader ham community, you can send it to the
- 73, Dee, KU4GC 5/3/17, First published in the March Link. Rev 5/3/17
What has Happened to dfma.org?
A few weeks ago our website was seriously hacked and was being used
to generate spam email in huge quantities. The site was
then shut down by the web hosting site.
To cope with this, it was decided to create a new web site using
the html language only rather than the Joomla package which is based
on php which is notoriously vulnerable. You are now looking at
this, likely temporary, web site. It should provide you with
basic DFMA information. In the near term, improvements will
continue to be made.
Meanwhile we are discussing on what should replace this interim site.
Should we go back to a newer version of Joomla (our previous system)?
Some have suggested WordPress which also uses the vulnerable php
language. Both newer version of Joomla and WordPress are regularly
updated to fix known flaws, but many professionals feel they will
never be safe.
Regardless of the ultimate system used, we hope to retrieve the
articles and information from the old site because they represent
a history of the DMFA. This is tricky because we can't just start
up the old system which would then, again, start generating great
volumes of spam. But there are ways to get at it -- the files are
still available. Much of the content is stored in a database which
we backed up monthly. We will work to get at the information in that
More pictures will also appear on both this site as we get things
fully up to speed and on future sites. Most of the old pictures
are in accessible files.
If you have any recommendation on any this please let us know.
Thanks in advance!
- KU4GC 4/27/17, rev. 4/30/17
May 2 Meeting Program: DurHamFest
In place of a regular program, we will finalize our plans for
DurHamFest. This will be the DFMA’s 43rd DurHamFest! Please
join us and help finalize our plans and list of volunteers so
that we can ensure another successful and fun event. Jack,
KM4MBG, our Hamfest Chair, will lead the program.
There may also be time for some Show&Tell if you have something
interesting to share.
As always, see you at Bullock's BBQ, 3330 Quebec Dr, Durham, at 6pm
on Tuesday, May 2nd.
- KU4GC 4/25/17