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Re: [WestMichiganHams] Armageddon Net Exercise Dec. 29th (Saturday) 10:00 am.

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  • Richards
    This raises interesting and important questions, Art. I wonder how it would actually play out, if there really is such a wide reaching, large scale disaster,
    Message 1 of 30 , Dec 30, 2012
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      This raises interesting and important questions, Art.

      I wonder how it would actually play out, if there really
      is such a wide reaching, large scale disaster, and every
      ham in town wanted to get on the air for all the various
      reasons they would have to do so.

      Personally, I envision chaos would be a good result, but
      I fear it could be far worse without some coordination and
      a lot of patient courtesy among the entire flock.

      But that is the point - it would be helpful to find out
      before a disaster occurs what might go down, and see
      whether or not there is a workable plan for avoiding
      chaos and rendering it useful.

      I agree the plan to include all hams was a good idea.

      I suspect it might have been more useful, and more
      widely "attended" had it been explained more fully,
      and announced more in advance. Nevertheless, it
      raises important questions, and serves as a starting
      point for further work.

      Happy trails.

      -------------------- K8JHR ----------------------------



      On 12/30/2012 2:39 PM, a_snapper wrote:
      >
      >
      >
      > Here is some background on the net.
      >
      > This event was constructed to generate thought about the day that you became aware there was a disaster, and were unable to communicate via normal means.
      >
      > I.E. when you emerged from a shelter and realized communications infrastructure (including ham) was disabled, and government agencies were rendered ineffective.
      >
      > Recent examples are Hurricane Katrina, and the Indonesian tsunami.
      >
      > West Michigan is relatively disaster-benign, but you never know.
      >
      > Some situations so dire, that amateur communications could have more value than merely a supplement to the ARES/RACES disaster response responsibilities. (i.e.damage assessment, ARC support)
      >
      > At this point, the radio operator could become a unique, autonomous communicator. Establishing a communications circuit,(2 or more hams) would benefit both the individuals and the community.
      >
      > Our plans for such a worse case scenario are in my opinion - weak. It seems to me that our network needs to be operational at the local level before we focus attention on restoring regional communications.
      >
      > An exception to this might be when calling in mutual aid resources. Of course, then the question becomes, where to put them.
      >
      > Since amateur radio is interoperable by nature, we are given an advantage over other communication services.
      >
      > When communications infrastructure is down, and lacking other plans, it logically follows to use a simplex calling frequency. Thus the use of .52 simplex for this net.
      >
      > An invitation was sent to over 500 amateur radio operators, and I was careful to extend it to all hams, not just ARES/RACES people.
      >
      >
      >
      > Thanks and 73,
      > Art Snapper NK8X
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > ------------------------------------
      >
      > Yahoo! Groups Links
      >
      >
      >
      >
    • wd8usa@aol.com
      Very thoughtful insights Mr. Snapper- Well spoken! All look, Read and learn!! Good stuff! DE WD8USA ...-.- ... From: a_snapper To:
      Message 2 of 30 , Dec 30, 2012
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        Very thoughtful insights Mr. Snapper- Well spoken!  All look, Read and learn!! Good stuff! DE WD8USA   ...-.-


        -----Original Message-----
        From: a_snapper <art@...>
        To: WestMichiganHams <WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Sun, Dec 30, 2012 2:39 pm
        Subject: [WestMichiganHams] Armageddon Net Exercise Dec. 29th (Saturday) 10:00 am.

         


        Here is some background on the net.

        This event was constructed to generate thought about the day that you became aware there was a disaster, and were unable to communicate via normal means.

        I.E. when you emerged from a shelter and realized communications infrastructure (including ham) was disabled, and government agencies were rendered ineffective.

        Recent examples are Hurricane Katrina, and the Indonesian tsunami.

        West Michigan is relatively disaster-benign, but you never know.

        Some situations so dire, that amateur communications could have more value than merely a supplement to the ARES/RACES disaster response responsibilities. (i.e.damage assessment, ARC support)

        At this point, the radio operator could become a unique, autonomous communicator. Establishing a communications circuit,(2 or more hams) would benefit both the individuals and the community.

        Our plans for such a worse case scenario are in my opinion - weak. It seems to me that our network needs to be operational at the local level before we focus attention on restoring regional communications.

        An exception to this might be when calling in mutual aid resources. Of course, then the question becomes, where to put them.

        Since amateur radio is interoperable by nature, we are given an advantage over other communication services.

        When communications infrastructure is down, and lacking other plans, it logically follows to use a simplex calling frequency. Thus the use of .52 simplex for this net.

        An invitation was sent to over 500 amateur radio operators, and I was careful to extend it to all hams, not just ARES/RACES people.

        Thanks and 73,
        Art Snapper NK8X

      • wd8usa@aol.com
        If the calling Freq is tied up with local chit chat you decrease your chances of a contact when needed as those that tie up that call Freq will be the only
        Message 3 of 30 , Dec 30, 2012
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          If the "calling Freq" is tied up with local chit chat you decrease your chances of a contact when needed as those that tie up that "call Freq" will be the only ones listening-
           A call freq is just that call, and move off!
          DE WD8USA   ...-.-


          -----Original Message-----
          From: Richards <jruing@...>
          To: WestMichiganHams <WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Sun, Dec 30, 2012 3:01 am
          Subject: Re: [WestMichiganHams] Reminder: Armageddon Net Exercise Dec. 29th (Saturday) 10:00 am.

           
          I rarely accord high credibility to any anonymous post.

          Your point fails to address the most obvious contradiction:
          It is called a "calling frequency" for a reason...
          it is not called a "ragchew net frequency" for
          the same reason.

          ------------------- K8JHR -------------------------

          On 12/29/2012 2:18 PM, TM wrote:

          > People who think this is a problem you are wrong!!!
          > If someone driving through an area where people are using
          > 146.520 and needed instructions or help, and you want these
          > people to vacate the frequency, hmmmm.

        • Mark
          Hi Jim, Thanks for the reply. I can see both sides of the issue, I think. So here are some questions: Totally defeats my ability to listen for OTHER
          Message 4 of 30 , Dec 31, 2012
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            Hi Jim,
             
            Thanks for the reply.  I can see both sides of the issue, I think.  So here are some questions:
             
            "Totally defeats
            my ability to listen for OTHER operators, such as
            those who might be cruising through town and
            look for a brief conversation or for directions to
            find gas, a restaurant, or the like."
             
            The conversational users of the '52 can't give directions and/or other local information?  I am pretty sure that someone cruising through town looking for a brief conversation would get their wish, as well.  So, it's your ability to listen, not your ability to make a call that is 'defeated', correct?
             
             
            "But if two or three
            fellers monopolize the frequency for a 3 hour
            rag chew, other operators have to lock that
            frequency out and stop scanning it, or else their
            scanners would stick on that one frequency and
            play the three hour rag chew - it won't scan if
            there is a signal, and if they talk for 3 hours that
            is all I would ever hear, and my rig won't scan any
            other channel until they stop."
             
            Does your rig not change channels because the '52 ops aren't allowing a second or two between exchanges, or is it because your scanning feature is set to delay?  Or just delays and has no 'instantaneous' feature?  Some radios also have features for a time limit, like 2 seconds for stopping on scan. 
             
            "which they are entitled to talk about,
            but I cannot make contact with anyone else
            who might cruise through town until they get off."
             
            So, why can't you break in and make a contact? 
             
            "I know many hams who have simply given up
            monitoring the calling frequency, because it
            does not work as it could."
             
            Truthfully, what do you think makes the most people not monitor '52, a few guys chatting for 3 out of 24 hours, or no traffic at all, for days, weeks and even months on end?
             
            "This is a hot topic, so I don't wanna do any
            more than answer your question as to how it
            matters to other operators. Not illegal... just
            defeats the calling frequency idea."
             
            It is also a topic in which rational discussion may lead to some long term improvements.  Did you know that when calling frequencies were first contrived, it was standard practice to stay there and have conversations?  This was prior to the VFO days.  It wasn't until maybe 20 years ago that someone, the ARRL perhaps, came up with the idea that once the contact was made to clear the frequency.  That practice was swiped from the marine radio service, Ch. 16 VHF.
             
            Learning a little about the history of calling frequencies shows that the way they have been used throughout history has changed.  Maybe it's time to once again reconsider the methodology behind the use of  '52.
             
            "Sorry, Tom... I live by the highway and when I
            got into ham radio, I was sorta looking forward to
            talking to people on the radio, but have had to
            give up on the calling freq concept. Since everybody
            wants to be PC and not rock the boat, it just goes
            on as you say."
             
            Why does the boat have to be rocked?  Is it all that tough to discuss uses and possible changes of a single frequency without getting emotional about it?  As for talking to people, aren't the number of people on '52 simplex a minutia compared to the number of folks on the repeaters, especially the linked system? 
             
            To be honest, and Tim N8NET can vouch for this, I was first totally against rag chewing on '52.   So I decided to check the 'culprits' out.
             
            1)  Would they let me break in with no problem?   --  Yep.
             
            2)  Would they stop chatting long enough for me to make a call?  -- Yep.
             
            3)  Would they let me join the QSO?  -- Yep.
             
            4)  Would any one of them QSY with me because I didn't want to tie up the '52 -- Yep.
             
            Hmmm.....they aren't breaking any rules, they all seemed to be accommodating and polite. So I reconsidered.  I also found out that this issue is going on all over the US, and not just on 2 meters.  People are actually rag chewing on the 6 m SSB calling frequency, too.
             
             I also found out that one of Rileys career highlights was erroneously citing some hams for rag chewing on the '52.  Riley was big time wrong and had to rescind the citations.
             
            I guess that's part of the calling frequency history, too.
             
            73
             
            Mark K8MHZ
             
            PS  I think I may change my QRZ signature to '146.52?  Nobody goes there anymore, it's too crowded'.
             
            :)


             
             
             
             
            -----Original Message-----
            From: WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com [mailto:WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Richards
            Sent: Sunday, December 30, 2012 5:20 PM
            To: WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [WestMichiganHams] Reminder: Armageddon Net Exercise Dec. 29th (Saturday) 10:00 am.

             



            On 12/30/2012 10:56 AM, Mark wrote:

            > If the people chatting on '52 readily give up the
            > frequency, how do they impede the process of making a contact? In
            > actuality, they may even be able to assist people in their attempts to
            > make contacts.?

            ----------------------------------------------------------

            Since you ask...

            Because others want to monitor the calling
            frequency on their radios, and make contact
            when someone else calls in. But if two or three
            fellers monopolize the frequency for a 3 hour
            rag chew, other operators have to lock that
            frequency out and stop scanning it, or else their
            scanners would stick on that one frequency and
            play the three hour rag chew - it won't scan if
            there is a signal, and if they talk for 3 hours that
            is all I would ever hear, and my rig won't scan any
            other channel until they stop. Totally defeats
            my ability to listen for OTHER operators, such as
            those who might be cruising through town and
            look for a brief conversation or for directions to
            find gas, a restaurant, or the like. I have simply
            had to lock out the calling frequency and no longer
            monitor it - because they will tie up my rig for
            hours every day with pretty much the same
            old schtick - which they are entitled to talk about,
            but I cannot make contact with anyone else
            who might cruise through town until they get off.

            I know many hams who have simply given up
            monitoring the calling frequency, because it
            does not work as it could.

            This is a hot topic, so I don't wanna do any
            more than answer your question as to how it
            matters to other operators. Not illegal... just
            defeats the calling frequency idea.

            Sorry, Tom... I live by the highway and when I
            got into ham radio, I was sorta looking forward to
            talking to people on the radio, but have had to
            give up on the calling freq concept. Since everybody
            wants to be PC and not rock the boat, it just goes
            on as you say.

            ---------------------------- K8JHR --------------------

          • Richards
            ... Sure... but that cuts me and everybody else out. They continue to monopolize the channel. ... Both... but you are getting it. ... Good questions.
            Message 5 of 30 , Dec 31, 2012
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              > The conversational users of the '52 can't give directions and/or other
              > local information?


              Sure... but that cuts me and everybody
              else out. They continue to monopolize
              the channel.



              > it's your ability to listen, not your ability to make a call that is
              > 'defeated', correct?


              Both... but you are getting it.




              > Does your rig not change channels because the '52 ops aren't allowing a
              > second or two between exchanges, or is it because your scanning feature
              > is set to delay? Or just delays and has no 'instantaneous' feature?
              > Some radios also have features for a time limit, like 2 seconds for
              > stopping on scan.


              Good questions. Let's put it into perspective
              with an example - the guys on 53 pause a bit
              to catch their breath, as is usual in any conversation,
              so the rig releases the channel and scans. Then
              it scans for another busy channel.

              Finding none busy, it catches 52 when they start
              up again - and instead of my listening for a contact,
              I end up listening to them rag chew.

              Or, let's assume the rig finds another busy channel,
              say, the Lowell repeater, then it holds that until
              they take a break, and then the guys on 52 catch
              the attention of the scanner, and we are back to
              them until they catch their breath again.

              But... in any case, all the while 52 continues their
              local rag chew session, I cannot monitor 52 and
              make my own contacts. If a traveler does cut
              into their conversation, THEY get the contact
              and handle the questions... in any case, they
              cut me out.

              But wait... there's more:

              Meanwhile, nobody can call ME on 52 and ask
              ME to QSY to a simplex channel. I cannot call
              YOU to make contact, and QSY with you to another
              channel. I cannot call you - even if I interrupt
              them - because you and the rest of the ham
              community quit monitoring the channel long ago.

              I should not have to beg permission from the
              other guys to use 52 to make a new contact.
              The whole idea is that it is always open for that
              sort of thing. But you cannot call me on 52, either,
              because I blocked that frequency on the scanner
              so I don't have to listen to their rag chew session
              every afternoon.

              And this actually matters, because none of my
              ham friends monitor 52 any more - because they
              don't want to listen to those guys every day, hoping
              somebody else will cut in - but, again, if they are on
              they will deal with the new contact, I will have to
              barge in and steal the contact to get involved, and
              nobody is going to work that hard.

              Unfortunately, it seems this way in a lot of places
              across the country, so many traveling hams don't
              even try 52 any more. But, maybe they would if
              it worked the way it might.




              > So, why can't you break in and make a contact?


              Because I should not have to. It is supposed
              to be open so anyone can call and make
              contact and then leave it open to the
              rest of the community to do so.

              Besides, none of my friends monitor 52 any
              more, so they are not listening for me to
              call them there. They don't wanna listen to
              the rag chew guys all afternoon, either, so they
              simply don't monitor 52 any more... again,
              defeating the whole idea of an open calling
              frequency for everybody. That effectively
              converts it into their personal, private channel,
              and defeats the notion of an open, free for all
              calling frequency.



              > Truthfully, what do you think makes the most people not monitor '52, a
              > few guys chatting for 3 out of 24 hours, or no traffic at all, for days,
              > weeks and even months on end?

              Good question. I doubt we can say for sure
              either way, but I think it is most likely that
              there is no traffic on 52 because so many
              hams have killed it off in this manner. This
              has been discussed on many nationwide internet
              ham discussion groups, so it seems to be a problem
              in many places, and it is possible the majority of
              hams have has simply given up on 52 - so nobody
              uses it much in this way any more.

              That means a few has changed it for the many,
              and considering I am one of the many, I lament
              the loss of something good.





              > It is also a topic in which rational discussion may lead to some long
              > term improvements.


              Yes... so far it has been plenty civil here.




              It wasn't until maybe 20
              > years ago that someone, the ARRL perhaps, came up with the idea that
              > once the contact was made to clear the frequency. That practice was
              > swiped from the marine radio service, Ch. 16 VHF.
              > Learning a little about the history of calling frequencies shows that
              > the way they have been used throughout history has changed. Maybe it's
              > time to once again reconsider the methodology behind the use of '52.



              Perhaps you are right. Perhaps it is changing
              on its own, in an organic way, as opposed to
              any intentional plan promulgated from above.




              > Why does the boat have to be rocked? Is it all that tough to discuss
              > uses and possible changes of a single frequency without getting
              > emotional about it? As for talking to people, aren't the number of
              > people on '52 simplex a minutia compared to the number of folks on the
              > repeaters, especially the linked system?


              You may be right about the statistics.

              Unfortunately, no matter how civil and how
              rational the debate is HERE... and it has been,
              it is impossible to discuss the matter with the
              crowd on 52. They say it is "legal" and have
              no patience or interest in discussing the impact
              or significance of any general understandings,
              or gentlemens' agreements, and the conversation
              is over. I negotiated the resolution of hundreds
              of heated disputes, including a fair number of
              heated divorces, but diplomacy has not chance
              for success. I mentioned this to an ARRL Section
              Manager - and he told me to simply give up and
              let them go. It is this sort of "tolerance" that
              allows a minority to overtake the majority.




              > To be honest, and Tim N8NET can vouch for this, I was first totally
              > against rag chewing on '52. So I decided to check the 'culprits' out.

              > 1) Would they let me break in with no problem? -- Yep.
              > 2) Would they stop chatting long enough for me to make a call? -- Yep.
              > 3) Would they let me join the QSO? -- Yep.
              > 4) Would any one of them QSY with me because I didn't want to tie up
              > the '52 -- Yep.




              Yes... but they should do this as
              a matter of courtesy to others.


              > Hmmm.....they aren't breaking any rules, they all seemed to be
              > accommodating and polite. So I reconsidered. I also found out that this
              > issue is going on all over the US, and not just on 2 meters. People are
              > actually rag chewing on the 6 m SSB calling frequency, too.



              OK... then I suppose we will have to give up
              the whole notion of a calling frequency.

              While they might have yield easily... the
              whole point is that no one should have to
              ask for it.

              They don't violate any rules, per se... but they
              unilaterally void a useful common practice.


              We are now sliding down the old slippery slope.
              How far are you willing to go... should we also
              abandon the band plans ? After all, those are not
              mandated by the Rules, either. How many long
              established practices should yield to a few guys
              who don't wanna play ball? Should my friends
              and I set conduct our 6 hour nightly net on the
              MidCars frequency, or the one used by the ARRL
              for code practice bulletins? That would be legal,
              and not violate any rules. Should we move our
              SSB net into the CW portion of the band, because,
              after all, it gets kinda crowded in the phone
              portion of the band ? How many of the long
              established gentlemens' agreements are we
              willing to void in this way?




              > I also found out that one of Rileys career highlights was erroneously
              > citing some hams for rag chewing on the '52. Riley was big time wrong
              > and had to rescind the citations. I guess that's part of the calling frequency history, too.


              Yes. No doubt no one is operating illegally...
              just operating so as to defeat notion of a calling
              frequency. The fact they call it such gives it
              meaning. Otherwise it is just another simplex
              channel.

              Perhaps there are not enough hams willing
              to stand by the practice to support and
              maintain it. Like so many things in our
              socio-political environment, few are willing
              to stand up and speak out - they just go
              with the flow, and while that is their choice,
              it is not mine. Silly me... I speak my mind!
              ;-) The XYL thinks I will get shot for that
              someday ... ;-)


              GOOD QUESTIONS-- GOOD DISCUSSION HERE.

              I APPEARS I MAY BE OUT-VOTED ON THE ISSUE... ;-)


              HAPPY DAYS AND HAPPY HOLIDAY, MARK.

              ________________JHR___________________
            • Mark
              Happy New Year, Jim! Most advice about ham radio practice centers around the just spin the knob paradigm. Or, basically ignore it. The Internet allows us to
              Message 6 of 30 , Jan 1, 2013
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                Happy New Year, Jim!
                 
                Most advice about ham radio practice centers around the 'just spin the knob' paradigm.  Or, basically ignore it.
                 
                The Internet allows us to do both, spin the knob when we don't like what is going on, and also voice our concerns to other hams off the air.
                 
                There is a problem with that.  People get brave behind the keyboard and many of them simply toss etiquette out the window.  We have to remember to remain as emotionally neutral as possible, but still keep the opinion intact. 
                 
                Many times, it's not what people say, but how they say it. 
                 
                ----Break----
                 
                Here is some more info on the '52.  First, you have to remember that I started looking for info on the '52 freq. to support a stance just like the one you have now.  Well, as you see, I haven't had much luck.   I just looked at a 1995 ARRL repeater directory.  144.200 is listed as the national calling frequency.  146.52 is listed simply as the "national simplex frequency".  The word 'calling' is not present.
                 
                I don't know if the new versions are different.  If they are, then the change occurred sometime after 1995.  I found an old (2006) discussion on QRZ about it and from the banter there, the ARRL had already added the 'calling' thing at that point.  It is currently listed on arrl.org as 'national simplex calling frequency'.
                 
                Now, I hate politics and I am not into ARRL bashing or anything of the like, so I tend to look at things mathematically.  
                 
                The ARRL consists of a very small minority of licensed operators and the upper echelon of that organization has already admitted they exist for self-preservation (and I understand this) and not necessarily to represent the entire membership, nor hams in general.  And realize, if they did not make self preservation a major concern, they would have been gone long ago.  It is a strategy that simply has to be. 
                 
                There are a large number of licensed, active hams that don't really agree with the ARRL and prefer to follow the FCC's rules instead.  Who are we to say that they can't or that following the ARRL's rules is a requirement for 'good operating practice'?
                 
                Considering that the FCC indeed does require good operating practices (97.101), their opinion on the use of 146.52 must reflect that.   So....here it is:
                 
                "NEWINGTON, CT, Oct 23, 2002--FCC Special Counsel for Enforcement Riley Hollingsworth has told five amateurs in Ohio and Michigan to disregard his earlier admonition to avoid lengthy QSOs on 146.52 MHz. Acknowledging that some confusion (sic!) exists within the amateur community as to whether 146.52 is a national calling channel or just another simplex frequency, Hollingsworth decided to simply rescind the five advisory notices he'd sent October 15.

                "We made an error in issuing that Advisory Notice, and you may disregard it," Hollingsworth wrote today in letters sent to each of the affected amateurs. Commenting to ARRL, Hollingsworth was blunt yet good-natured. "I goofed," he said. "If I were worried about making a fool of myself from time to time, I never would have become a lawyer in the first place." "
                 
                I think this is a good place to pause.  :)
                 
                Oh, my New Year's resolution is to get some antennas, especially my 2m/440 one outside.  Then I could actually listen to 146.52 and see (hear) what I am missing.
                 
                73
                 
                Mark K8MHZ
                 
                 

                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                Yes. No doubt no one is operating illegally...
                just operating so as to defeat notion of a calling
                frequency. The fact they call it such gives it
                meaning. Otherwise it is just another simplex
                channel.

                Perhaps there are not enough hams willing
                to stand by the practice to support and
                maintain it. Like so many things in our
                socio-political environment, few are willing
                to stand up and speak out - they just go
                with the flow, and while that is their choice,
                it is not mine. Silly me... I speak my mind!
                ;-) The XYL thinks I will get shot for that
                someday ... ;-)


                GOOD QUESTIONS-- GOOD DISCUSSION HERE.

                I APPEARS I MAY BE OUT-VOTED ON THE ISSUE... ;-)

                HAPPY DAYS AND HAPPY HOLIDAY, MARK.

                ________________JHR___________________

              • Richards
                Good Post, Mark -- a lot of buckshot in that one little shell! Happy days.
                Message 7 of 30 , Jan 1, 2013
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                  Good Post, Mark -- a lot of buckshot in that one little shell!

                  Happy days.

                  ----------------------- JHR ------------------------------------
                • Mark
                  Thanks Jim, Really, not much, if any of the info is mine, personally. I found it on the Net and just passed it on in somewhat of a condensed version. 73 Mark
                  Message 8 of 30 , Jan 1, 2013
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                    Thanks Jim,
                     
                    Really, not much, if any of the info is mine, personally.  I found it on the 'Net and just passed it on in somewhat of a condensed version.
                     
                    73
                     
                    Mark K8MHZ
                     
                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com [mailto:WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Richards
                    Sent: Tuesday, January 01, 2013 6:12 PM
                    To: WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: Re: [WestMichiganHams] Reminder: Armageddon Net Exercise Dec. 29th (Saturday) 10:00 am.

                     

                    Good Post, Mark -- a lot of buckshot in that one little shell!

                    Happy days.

                    ----------------------- JHR ------------------------------------

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