Thursday, May 20, 2004

Meeting of the Oblong Table 

Meeting at Kings May 19th, 2004

We had an official “oblong table” meeting of the Pittsburgh Area Scanner Net this evening. We had eight in attendance including Bill (N3BPB), Rich (K3RWN), Frank (K3FSS), Duncan (KF6YYT), Dave (Ham in training), Frank (Ham in training), myself (WA3FKG) and my wife Linda. Linda, who tolerates all of my hobbies well, was just there for the ice cream. :-)

We took an informal vote and the majority of those present, in fact it was unanimous, decided that we should start planning the Pittsburgh Area Scanner Club. This being the start of summer it was suggested that we spend the next few months planning exactly what we would like the mission of the club to be and what structure it should take. A few months ago it was thought that we would suspend the meetings at King’s for the summer months but it looks like there is enough interest to continue on. Feel free to email me or check in on the Sunday night net with your thoughts on the matter.

We decided to investigate finding a place for a group picnic during the summer. Last year I had hoped to do that in combination with one of the Skyview Radio Society events but it didn’t work out as well as I had originally planned. So this year I am going to look for a picnic grove with a shelter, preferably with power, where we can all get together and have a cook out, let the kids play and tinker with radios. Another one to give some thought. Again, any ideas or suggestions let me know.

There were reports from the Dayton Hamvention of all the new goodies that were showcased there. I think I even heard someone say that they actually had their hands on the new Icom R-20. Some of the new radios were kept under clear plastic domes which makes me wonder if they were only mockups of if they just didn’t want one of a few scarce demo models to be damaged or grow legs and walk away. If you are a radio aficionado Dayton always holds lots of enjoyment. If you would like to see pictures of the big event Radio Free Bob aka WC3O took his digital camera and his pictures are now posted on the Skyview Radio Society web site. http://www.skyviewradio.net Just go there and click on the PICTURES button.

We did a lot of comparing notes on frequencies, dispatch points and various codes used by some of the departments. Dave (ham in training type) brought among other things pictures of a HUGE model rocket that he went to see launched not long ago. I didn’t get all of the details but let me tell you that the picture was impressive. He also brought a binder with a mapping of states that he has heard with an older AM broadcast radio that he has resurrected. We also compared notes on aircraft that we have monitored in the 118 to 136 mHz band and the types of conversations heard there.

It being a Wednesday night most of us had to be up for work the next day so we did not stay late. Even so I think everyone who came had a good time. Stay tuned to the net for the time and place of the next meeting and stop out if you can.

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