Recent Aricles - see left and below
12/08 OCRA Christmas Dinner Postponed to 12/17
11/25 December 4 Program: DFMA Christmas Party
10/31 Tim Nibbe, KW4GP, sk
10/29 Nov 6 Program: Hams Helping Hams
10/16 DFMA MCU at the Jamboree on the Air
10/16 Hamnic on Saturday, 10/20, 3pm--, W4BOH QTH
10/09 Next VE Session Moved to Efland Bahai Center!
09/28 Technician License Classes Coming Up
09/27 Oct 2 Program: Free Software for Ham Radio
08/31 September 4 Program: Repeaters and More
07/31 Aug 7 Program: Elections and Show & Tell
07/11 July 17 Program: Civil Air Patrol – an Overview
07/10 New DFMA UHF Net on the 441.1 Repeater
06/15 Field Day is Almost Here
06/07 OCRA/DFMA FD Meals to be Prepaid
06/06 Dick Boynton, KK4CCX, sk
05/31 June 5 Prog: Field Day Planning and Show & Tell
05/18 DurHamFest 2018 is Almost Here!
04/22 May 1 Prog: DurHamFest Planning / Show & Tell
03/22 Apr 3 Program: Amateur Radio Digital Voice
02/28 Mar 6 Program: Solar Powered Trash Handling
02/01 Public Service Opportunites Coming Up
01/28 Feb 6 Program: Drones for Geoscience
For older news
OCRA Christmas Dinner Postponed to 12/17
The OCRA Christmas Dinnner, originally scheduled for 12/10 has been postponed
for one week due to scary weather forecasts. It is now scheduled for 6pm,
12/17. As before, it will be held at the Exchange Club in Hillsborough. See
NCOCRA.org for details.
- Dee, KU4GC 12/8/18
December 4 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 11/25/18
Tim Nibbe, KW4GP, sk
Timothy Allen Nibbe 04/10/56-10/29/18
Tim, KW4GP, at the 2016 DFMA Christmas Party
From the Hudson Funeral Home web site:
DURHAM- Mr. Timothy “Tim” Allen Nibbe, 62, passed away Monday October 29, 2018.
Mr. Nibbe was born April 10, 1956 in Fargo, N.D to Verne and Patricia Nibbe. He proudly served his country in the United States Airforce. Mr. Nibbe will be lovingly remembered by family and friends.
Mr. Nibbe is survived by his parents Verne and Patricia Nibbe; partner, James Ervin Dixon; sons, Nick and Lucas Nibbe of Ohio; sister, Cindy Ricks of South Carolina.
No services are planned. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Hock Family Pavilion at 4023 North Roxboro St., Durham, NC 27704. Online condolences can be made at www.hudsonfuneralhome.com.
After moving to Durham from Conyers, GA, Tim had his amateur
radio flame rekindled.
During his service in the Air Force, he worked on a number of different
radio systems, so he had 6 years of knowledge that he wanted to put to
use. He decided that he wanted to go from Technican to Extra and started
studying. As a part of the process, he started looking for local
resources, and found DFMA. After a couple of meetings, Tim decided that
we should both join the organization and we did. A couple of Tim's
passions, was still with airplanes and radio tubes. There were many a
night that I would get lots of information about this history of tubes,
who made what tube He continued to study for the exams, and in January
2015 took both sessions and passed. While Tim started experiencing more
pain associated with his Fibromyalgia, he still continued. He dropped
off attending meetings and activities due to the pain. He would putter
around the house and would work on his "shack".
During this time, he started having problems with his lower abdomen. After some tests, they discovered that he had a problem with his gall bladder and had it removed. After adapting to new diet, he continued to have pain issues with his lower abdomen. He went from eating big meals, to eating single servings of things. The pain continued. After more tests, he had discovered a tumor on his liver approximately 8 cm in diameter (just over 3 inches). This was what was causing his pain. After a visit to a hepatologist, his case was presented to the Duke Tumor Board. On Tuesday, September 18th, he learned that it was cancer. He was given the option of chemotherapy and a prognosis of 6 to 12 months. His other option was hospice with a prognosis of 6 months. Tim chose the later. During this process, Tim went from 306 pounds to a skinny 179 pounds. After spending a month at in-home hospice care, he was admitted to in-patient hospice to get his pain management under control. On Wednesday, October 24th, we met with the medical team, and were looking for options of 24/7 care for Tim. He was also told that his prognosis was not 6 months, but, actually 2 to 3 months. However, on Friday, October 26, the medical team decided that in house hospice was the best place for him. Tim got his celestial discharge from hospice on Monday, October 29th at 7:10 AM.
At the present time, there is no memorial service planned for Tim.
73, Jimmy -- KF4KHU 10/31/18
November 6 Program: Hams Helping Hams
What do these photographs have to do with hams helping hams? The glue that ties the story together is likely to emerge any time you have an extended conversation with another ham at a club meeting, a Have Another Meal (HAM) gathering such as the recent “HAMnic”. It is during that discussion, perhaps of one’s lifetime experience whether it be past or current profession, the ham hobby itself, perhaps past military service or some other hobby unrelated to ham radio, that yet another reminder emerges that ham club members as a group have a very wide and deep set of skills and experiences that can come to the aid of most any challenge or requirement.
Dan, KR4UB; 10/29/18
DFMA MCU at the Jamboree on the Air - Help Needed
The DFMA will be helping a local pack of Cub Scouts participate in this
year's Jamboree on the Air the afternoon of Sunday, October 21st, 2pm to
4pm. The scouts
we will be hosting will be 10 year olds. The primary objective of the
event will be for the scouts to talk with people (both other scouts and
hams in general) whom they ordinarily wouldn't be able to.
The plan is to bring the MCU to the Rock Quarry Park, 701 Stadium Dr,
Durham (near Duke General Hospital and the County Stadium). There we'll be
operating HF on 20m using the MCU's Tarheel mobile HF antenna.
We may also demonstrate the use of our VHf and UHF repeaters.
Who would like to help? Please let me know (email: km4mbg AT km4mbg DOT org).
73, Jack -- KM4MBG 10/16/18
Hamnic on Saturday, 10/20, 3pm--, W4BOH QTH
HAMNIC is ON for Saturday, 10/20, 3PM, 1500 hrs, at the Field Day site, 3117 Moorefields Rd., Hillsborough 27278
Fishing allowed. Swimming too, if you are hardy, small model planes and drones.
I'll have a hot grill and maybe a fire in the smoker.
I'll have burgers and dogs and I heard there may be some ribs. If you don't eat oink or moo, bring what you like and finish it here, as you wish.
The rest is up to YOU, so PLEASE let me know SOON how many in your party and what you want to bring.
(mail to: infomet AT embarqmail DOT com or use the email reflector OCRA-DFMA AT groups DOT io )
It's possible I might suggest a change, if it looks like too many chocolate cakes....
I'll bring out plates and the FD silver, if the butler can get it polished in time...
I'll get out my big coffee pot.
Beer/wine, if you want
Lettuce/tomatoes for burgers...I'll give you numbers
SMILES AND LAUGHTER
And feel free to remind me of what I forgot.
I know it's late, but I was pretty low with stomach/spine issues for a while, now looking better. I know some have made other plans, but I'm hoping for a good crowd. We can take a light rain, if we want to stay in the garage, but heavy rain would do us in.
SO, get those emails out and let's have some fun and many eyeball QSOs!
Wilson, W4BOH; 10/16/18
Saturday's VE Session Moved to Efland Bahai Center!
I was just advised by Kirby Saunders that the EOC has been diagnosed with
a severe mold problem, severe enough that operations will be moved out
of the EOC to alternate locations starting Monday, remediation may take
up to several months. He said we could have proceeded with the exam
session Saturday, but at our own risk.
Therefore, after verifying availability, the exam session will be held
at the Efland Baha'i Center at 10:00am this Saturday (119 Maple St,
Efland, NC 27243). I am contacting the ARRLVEC to see if they can change
the published location on short notice.
Examiners, let me know if you got the message about the change, I will
advise any candidates that I know are coming. I will also place a
notice with directions to Efland on the door of the EOC to redirect
any candidates who may show up there.
Dave, W4SAR; 10/9/18
Technician License Classes Coming Up
Nick, KA1HPN, will be teaching a Tech License Class Saturday mornings in
Technician License Classes
- Get your first Amateur Radio License - the Technician Class
- Three class sessions:
- 9:00 AM to Noon
- October 6, 13, 20
- Chatham County Emergency Operations Center
- Exam session
- 9:00 AM, October 27
- Chatham County Emergency Operations Center
- Open to class attendees and walk-ins for all classes of Amateur License exams.
This classed was organized for the Chatham County CERT Program, but all
persons interested in amateur radio are welcome to attend this course.
Contact Nick, KA1HPM, by email at KA1HPM at ARRL dot NET to register and/or get more details.
Nick, KA1HPM; 9/28/18
October 2 Program: Free Software for Ham Radio
Jack, KM4MBG, will be talking to us about free software for ham radio.
Do you understand the impedance matching between your transmitter and
antenna? For many hams, the answer is “yes,” or, “I know it is important
and where I can learn more.” We would certainly be frustrated if we
couldn’t use an antenna that was not pre-approved by manufacturer of our
transmitter. How many of us can say the same about the software that we
attach to our transmitters? We'll explore the benefit of Free Software,
software which is free from author-imposed restrictions, for ham radio.
I'll set the stage by giving a tour of exciting software, but we'll spend
most of the time covering the basics of what you need to know to be as at
home when working with Free Software systems and communities as you are
with antennas and transmission lines.
Jack, KM4MBG; 9/27/18
September 4 Program: Repeaters and More
Charlie, NC4CD, will be talking to us about Repeater Basics and the
DFMA Repeaters, along with some basic info on how the cellular phone
systems work and be sure to read his column in this issue of The Link.
As usual, we will be meeting at Bullock's BBQ at 6:00pm. The formal meeting
will begin at 7:00pm with some brief DFMA business. (You may skip the meal
and just come for the program. But eating with friends is a good part of
Dee, KU4GC; 8/31/18
August 7 Program: Elections and Show & Tell
We will first hold our yearly election of
Board of Director Officers and At-Large
Members. That will only take a few
minutes so we will have time for the
always fun and informative Show and
Tell. Please bring something of interest
and plan on spending about 5 minutes
talking about it."
Dee, KU4GC; 7/31/18
July 17 Program: Civil Air Patrol – an Overview
The program will be presented by Dawn Stange and her son.
The Civil Air Patrol is an all volunteer auxiliary of the US Air Force. Adult members participate in Search and Rescue operations and deployment efforts during natural disasters. There is also a youth cadet program. Many initiatives of the Civil Air Patrol are of interest to amateur radio operators. Find out how amateur radio operators can participate in Civil Air Patrol operations.
Check, KW4KZ; 7/11/18
New DFMA UHF Net on the 444.1 Repeater
There will be a new rag-chew net on our TV Hill 440 repeater. It will be
held on Tuesday evenings at 8pm execept when we have a DFMA membership
meeting (normally the 1st Tuesday of month). Normally the net control will
be J.R. (N4JQR). That's 444.100+ with PL 82.5.
J.R, N4JQR; 7/10/18
Field Day is Almost Here
It is less than a week for Field Day setup to begin. Press the Field Day
"button" on the left for the latest information.
Field Day is an excellent opportunity for newcomers to learn both
under less than optimal conditions. Since there is plenty of supervsions,
even hams with only a tech license, or prospective hams may operate.
It is also
an excellent opportunity to get to know your fellow hams a little better.
There's little more rewarding than working with otheres to achieve common
goals. Even if you have only limited time, it is worth dropping by to see
what is going one. Join us!
Dee, KU4GC; 6/15/18
OCRA/DFMA Field Day Saturday 5pm Dinner & Sunday Breakfast Meal Attendees Requested to Prepay to Keep Costs Low
From last year’s Field Day and member discussion at club meetings, planning for the Field Day meals is one of the more challenging activities in terms of knowing how many will be at the meals and ensuring the right amount of food is purchased.
The festive DFMA/OCRA BBQ Potluck, hosted by Wilson and a small group of helpers is still on and still FREE. John Boone will be soliciting registration and potluck contributions as last year, so please sign up to join us and bring a tasty salad, vegetable, or dessert.
For the June 23 Saturday 5PM Dinner & June 24 Sunday Breakfast…
For this year’s 2018 Field Day, OCRA and DFMA are asking attendees to
prepay (the same price as always, $5.00 for each meal) at the Field
Day June 23, Saturday 5 PM Dinner and June 24 Sunday Breakfast
in order to have an accurate count. This will help keep the cost low and
avoid the clubs losing significant money or, asking members who do show up
to pay a higher amount to cover those who do not. These payments also go
to fund the availability of free bottled water during the Friday set up day.
Prepayment authorizes the club to buy food on your behalf and can be
by cash or check payment at your convenience as described below.
Vegetarian meals can be requested. PayPal costs for many small
payments is excessive and precludes use of that feature. Based
on the food purchase date, meal orders must be received by OCRA
by June 18th. If you pay, and later must cancel due to
unforeseen circumstances, send an email to
prior to the June 19th food order date, and your payment will
be refunded or, you can use it as a tax-deductible donation to
the club, or to extend your membership.
Making PrePay Easy
- Using checks, or cash in an envelope as annotated below will help with record keeping (and refunds for timely cancellations). Checks and cash will be held and not deposited until food purchase. Cancellations received before food purchase will be refunded.
- In addition to opportunities to pre pay by mail or at
upcoming club meetings, the following OCRA/DFMA
contacts at the Saturday morning breakfast locations
below will accept your payment:
- Each Saturday Ham Breakfast – June 2, 9, 16
- Egg & I Chapel Hill on NC 54 East – Dan, KR4UB or M.K. W4MKR
- Virlies Pittsboro John, KX4P
- BoJangles at Hillsborough – Mike, KK4BPH
- DFMA Club Meeting June 5, (M.K. W4MKR)
- OCRA Meeting June 11 (Dan, KR4UB)
Checks or cash in envelopes marked with the same information shown on the
check below will help with record keeping e.g. name, callsign, number
attending dinner and breakfast meals, and preference for veggie meals.
Checking Receipt of your Meal Sign up Status
As prepay checks and cash are received as described above, the OCRA website page at this link will be frequently updated Field Day Meal Sign up Status
Thanks in advance for helping this part of Field Day to be a success!
Taken for NCOCRA.org; posted there by Dan, KR4UB; 6/4/18
Dick Boynton, KK4CCX, sk
Dick, KK4CCX (Richard Parker Boynton), 88, died Monday, June 4, 2018 at Duke Regional Hospital after a brief illness. Visitation will be held at 1pm on Thursday, June 7th at Mt. Bethel United Methodist Church, 1605 Bahama Rd, Bahama, NC 27503. A funeral service will follow at 2 p.m and burial will follow in the church cemetery.
Dick was licensed in 2011 and soon joined the DFMA. He became active in Durham County ARES and participated in public service events and other activities. He also participated in OCRA/DFMA Field Day.
He was a regular participant in the DFMA Thursday Night net. Due to health problems his participation in the last couple of years diminished. However, during the May 31st net, one of the participants asked if anyone had heard from Dick because he had now missed two nets.
And to quote Dave, W4SAR: “Dick only recently acquired his amateur radio license, but embraced the avocation. He was a wonderful gentleman to be around and I always enjoyed his company. He usually made an effort to come out to Field Day for a bit, but his declining health made that more difficult in recent years. He will be missed.”
The following is an edited version of the bio taken from the website of the Clements Funeral and Cremation Services:
Richard Parker Boynton was born in Hackensack, NJ to the late Charles Parker Boynton and Sara McCallister Boynton. He graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY with a degree in electrical engineering and took a job with Sperry Corporation.
He married Ruth Ann Marschner in 1953, and they resided in Syosset, NY where they welcomed two children. The family moved to Durham in 1961 where he worked with Sperry and retired after almost 37 years. He then trained to be a locksmith and worked about 20 years as The County Locksmith before retiring a second time. He was a ham radio operator, gunsmith and gentleman farmer.
He is survived by his wife; son, Robert Parker Boynton (Betsy) of Kannapolis; daughter, Lois Ann Boynton of Chapel Hill; grandson, the Rev. Jonathan Mark Boynton and wife the Rev. Deanna S. Boynton of Stephens City, VA; granddaughter, Jennifer B. Kohn and her husband Joel L. Kohn from Asheville; great-grandchildren, Lydia and James Boynton, and Parker Kohn; and his faithful dog, Pepper.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to Mt. Bethel United Methodist Church General Fund. The family is being assisted by Clements Funeral and Cremation Services, Inc. in Durham. Online condolences may be sent to www.clementsfuneralservice.com.
73, Dee, KU4GC, 6/6/18
June 5 Program: Field Day Planning and Show & Tell
In lieu of a regular program, Dave (W4SAR), our Field Day Coordinator,
will review plans for OCRA/DFMA Field Day 2018.
We will likely have some time for the always fun and informative Show & Tell. Please bring something of interest and plan on spending about 5 minutes talking about it.
PS: If you did not pick up your DFMA 2018 Directory and Repeater Guide at DurHamFest, ask for it up at the Tuesday meeting.
- Dee, KU4GC 5/31/18
DurHamFest 2018 is Almost Here!
Hamfest 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 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 5/18/18
ps: The 2018 DFMA Directory & Repeater Guide 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.)
May 1 Program: DurHamFest Planning and Show & Tell
In lieu of a regular program we will finalize our plans for DurHamFest. This will be the club’s 44th DurHamFest! Please join us and help complete our plans so that we can ensure another successful and fun event. Our DurHamFest Chair, Jack, KM4MBG, will preside.
We will likely have some time for the always fun and informative Show & Tell. Please bring something of interest and plan on spending about 5 minutes talking about it.
- Chuck, KW4KZ 4/22/18
April 3 Program: Amateur Radio Digital Voice
April's program will be presented by Kevin Otte, N8VNR.
"Just as we have progressed from AM to SSB, ham radio is moving into the
digital age. Come learn about the benefits of digital voice on the air
and how it's being used here in the Triangle. If you're already a digital user, bring your rig along for a show-and-tell."
Kevin N8VNR has been licensed for over 25 years and currently holds an
Extra class ticket. Preferring a good ragchew over a contest, you'll
often find him tinkering on various new technologies. He lives in the
shadow of the DFMA tower in Hillsborough.
- Chuck, KW4KZ 3/22/18
March 6 Program: Solar Powered Trash Handling
Representatives from MoonRise Solar Solutions will provide information on the
implementation of Big Belly solar compactors. Big Belly solar compactors
replace regular trash and recycle collectors found around cities, college
campuses, and parks. They will discuss the technology involved and the
- Chuck, KW4KZ 2/28/18
Public Service Opportunites Coming Up
Spring is rapidly approaching, and with Spring, a young man's (and YL's) thoughts turn to........ham radio public service (well, maybe).
Below is a link to the sign-up page created for this spring's events, and events being posted as they are confirmed.
There are opportunities for SAGS, Rest Stop Monitors, and some shadows.
Please check the page now and then as it will be updated as other events are confirmed with their respective groups.
Thank you in advance and we look forward to working with you again as the season heats up.
Best regards Dan KD4AGQ 2/1/18
February 6 Program: Drones for Geoscience
Our speaker, Justyna Jeziorska, sent us the following info:
Drones for Geoscience involves interdisciplinary STEM approaches that focuses on discovery, interpretation and communication of meaningful patterns in location-based data. This field develops and apply geospatial approaches to complex problems, advancing innovative solutions using spatial data. Justyna Jeziorska from NCSU Center for Geospatial Analytics specializes in imagery processing techniques with Unmanned Aerial Systems(UAS) and will be presenting valuable insights about the recent advancements in the field of Geoscience analytics using the drone technologies. Please refer to the following link for more information.
Justyna Jeziorska is a Research Associate in the Center for Geospatial Analytics at NC state University. Jeziorska is a geographer, cartographer and GIS specialist who has been working with UAS-obtained imagery since 2012, processed countless UAS-obtained datasets, and teaches NC State students how to use drones for their research. In the process, Jeziorska has published many research papers in the subject matter. Jeziorska also teaches brief continuous professional development workshop involving UAS Operations & Analytics at NCSU - where students learn to select a drone matching their needs, fly safely and legally at NC, prepare and execute flights to collect data, get the most out of your drone & UAS data, and processing concepts from raw UAS imagery into a final useful analytics.
- Chuck, KW4KZ 1/28/18