- A few years ago I was the "engineer" on a project sponsored by our
company's amateur radio club to build code practice oscillators. What
I came up with was a 555 circuit driving a piezo "speaker". The key
was a strip of aluminm bar stock with a knob from a half a wooden spool
and a poker chip, mounted on top of a baseball collector card box which
served to contain the electronics and battery. The total build was
either 36 or 50 units for a little more than $2 each ( exclusive of the
9V batteries which were supplied outside my work ). The clear plastic
box allowed us to include out club logo.
The 555 circuit that was the basis for the code practice oscillator was
derived from a circuit that I had used to control a laser pointer in a
light communication project, so the sound output of the CPO had the
same square wave quality that my light beam project did.
Depending on the skill level of your group, and of course your budget,
you could do some very interesting things. It is very simple to
substitute a bright LED for the speaker. Now you have a transmitter at
a few hundred Tera-Hertz ( no license required ). It can be received
by eye, or use a photo detector with an amplifier. Use some curved
mirrors or lenses to demonstrate antenna gain versus beam width.
It is a small step to go from modulating an LED with Morse Code to
voice amplitude modulation, but you lose the ability to "copy by eye".
But the photo detector with amplifier works nicely.
Rather than use voice, set up stations across the camp with PSK31.
I doubt there is time to do it this year, but but a group of scouts
with a little leadership and help could build a system equivalent to
what set the light communication voice distance record of 173 miles.
If you sparked enough interest they could be testing it next Summer and
put on a fine demonstration by JOTA 2009.
If light communication is not your thing, a little bit of electronics
could produce a two inch diameter speaker wired to "talk" by sending
out PSK31 audio and "listen" by receiving them. Mount that two inch
diameter speaker at the focus of parabolic reflector ( made by some
Scouts out of paper machet ). Sending text messages by sound waves for
several hundred, maybe a few thousand, feet does not match talking to
Europe on the radio. But it does teach electronics. It is well within
the skills of the Scouts. Doesn't require a license. Might be fun.
--- In ScoutRadio@yahoogroups.com, "ab5eb" <ab5ebdxer@...> wrote:
> What ideas do you guys have for the scouts outside of the radio
> station itself?
- InfoAge in Wall Township, New Jersey is considering making the Diana
Site on the banks of the Shark River available for low-impact overnight
camping. The Diana site is the home of the Ocean-Monmouth Amateur Radio
Club, N2MO, and the InfoAge Museum.
If your troop is interested in a bit of Radio Scouting, along with a
visit to the InfoAge museum <http://www.infoage.org>, please reply to
Link to Site photographs: