Our annual support of the YMCA “Run Around Spencer Mountain” photos:
On August 1, 2017, GCARS, GAARC & GC ARES teamed up with the Gastonia Composite Squadron of the Civil Air Patrol. At the request of the squadron leadership, we presented a nearly 2 hour program introducing the group (and in the main, the cadets) to amateur radio and its many facets: radio history & theory, transmission modes, radio applications and new technology. We demonstrated HF, VHF, and UHF radios, using analog and digital voice and data modes.
The cadets of the squadron were very responsive, asking many bright questions and displaying fine manners and discipline. A couple of the adult members of the squadron are hams and they enjoyed the update on many of the new technologies in amateur radio today.
It was a great night- we greatly appreciate the opportunity to visit with the Gastonia CAP. We have been invited back to the Gastonia CAP on November 28, 2017, to give a presentation on “Satellite Communications”. Cheerfully, we look forward to working again with this great group, a group that shares our passion for public service and technology!
Check out the Gastonia CAP Composite Squadron’s FaceBook page.
Check it out: the 2017 ARRL Field Day Contest results are up for viewing. All the contacts have been sent into the Log of the World.
View the page here:
Hey GCARS Family and Friends,
Just found out (just was posted on their site recently) that GCARS did very well in the 2017 Winter Field Day Contest.
GCARS placed 10th overall in the Outdoor category and 5th in the “2 Oscar” category, with a score of 9044! This is a great result for our first WFD and very casual contesting style!
Great job to all those who participated in Winter Field Day 2017!
(If you were wondering about ARRL (Summer Field Day 2017), the log deadline is 7-25-17, and we should have the results in about a month and a half afterwards).
No, we are not really chasing foxes! We are going to try to find a hidden transmitter on the 70 cm band. NC0G, George, will be our venerable “fox” and try to out smart the participants as he hides the transmitter somewhere in Gaston County. It’s hide-and-seek on steroids! Much fun, but also with a practical use: it sharpens our radio-direction finding skills to assist with public services, such as locating lost seniors, illegal transmitters causing harmful interference, or even downed aviators.
The “fox hunt” will begin at 10 a.m., July 22, 2017. There will be a preliminary breakfast for the teams to meet and greet at the restaurant known as “Grits and Greens” in Lowell, NC at 8:30 a.m.
Anyone is welcome to participate: you don’t need to be a licensed ham to receive a signal (only to transmit one). Come on out, it will be a lot of fun!
Below is an example of a directional antenna we built for the 70 cm band:
Our 2017 Field Day was a huge success!!! Over 400 radio contacts!!! Thank you to everyone who helped; setting up, operating, cooking, cleaning, eating, breaking down, bringing food & drinks….the list goes on!!!!
Please enjoy pictures from the past 24 hour event by clicking the link below:
June 24 through 25, 2017. This is our annual Field Day- our “open house” where we operate the radios, eat great food and share the news about the best hobby in the world! You’re invited!
For more information, click here:
It was a blessed day at Biggerstaff Park in Dallas on June 17, 2017. Thank you to all who came out to support the Domestic Violence Shelter of Gaston County. Here’s a link to pictures from the event:
Below are pictures of the GCARS Booth.
GCARS had a great time providing supplementary communications at the Lowell Freedom Festival yesterday, 5-27-17. Thank you, Gail, for having us!
Follow the link below to view the pictures of the event.
We had a great time this afternoon building Tape Measure Yagi antennas with the Lincoln County 4-H Haywire Electric Club!
AJ4JZ, Bill Stevenson, did a fantastic job teaching the kids about ham radio and the importance of having gain when transmitting and receiving!!
Thank you to everyone who contributed to this build project for this group of young people!!
Here is some BIG news:
DMR (Digital Mobile Radio) is coming to Spencer Mountain. Due to a generous gift from Gerald Rankin, AG0R, the Gaston County Amateur Radio Society is very shortly (and Lord willing), going to have a DMR amateur radio repeater on top of Spencer Mountain, North Carolina, on the 70 cm band. The DMR repeater will allow hams with a DMR radio to communicate with other radio amateurs locally, regionally, nationally, and even globally using a quality of voice communications similar to 3G cellular phones.
We have a Hytera RD622 digital repeater,
which we plan to connect to the Brandmeister network, a global amateur radio DMR system with hundreds of talk groups all over the world.
Right now, we are in the process of setting up the repeater, getting things straight with our prospective internet service provider, and testing the system. We hope to have this working before the end of May 2017.
DMR is an exceedingly affordable and robust digital mode. HT’s can be had for under $100 dollars (Like the TYT MD-380). Users are required to get a radio identifier number from DMR-MARC, which is the master group for issuing DMR identifiers so that users can work all the current internet linked DMR networks.
Go to this link here to register for a DMR id number (it’s free):
You do not need to have a radio to get a number. If you are thinking about doing DMR, then you should go ahead and get a number from DMR-MARC.
If you want to experience the excitement of DMR now, you can listen to any talk group you would like on the Brandmeister “Hose Line” which is a web enabled dashboard for listening to DMR traffic on the internet. It only requires a current web browser and the ability to process sound. Give it a try:
More information to come about how to set up your radio “code plug” and which talk groups will be enabled from the N4GAS DMR repeater.
This past Sunday, April 23, 2017, the Gaston County Amateur Radio Society provided supplemental communications, helped spectators and acted at crossing guards at the fifth annual Caromont Health Belmont Criterium bicycle races. It was a rainy, cold day, but the hams of GCARS stepped up to the challenge, and volunteered from 11:30 a.m. until 7 p.m. The action was exciting and we got a real taste of operating in less-than-favorable conditions. Many thanks to all the hams who participated! We received thanks from and an informal invitation to help again next year from the race organizers.
Check out our Winter Field Day 2017 pictures!
Winter Field Day begins tomorrow, January 28th & 29th!! Here’s some updated info. We look forward to seeing you tomorrow!
WINTER FIELD DAY:
Date: Saturday, January 28th & Sunday, January 29th, 2017
Time: 10:00 am – SETUP
2:00 pm – ON THE AIR
Place: 1808 Ratchford Dr Dallas NC (across from the 321 Flea Market)
Contact: NC0G (George Poteat) for more information about the event
Since all of our operations will be conducted inside the club camper/trailer, we will have 2-3 stations running (depending on weather conditions and the number of active operators that sign up). Ideally, there will be 2 operators per station.
We will have limited space inside the camper, so I will setup an Operator Schedule on 3 hour increments.
There will be no need to tow the trailer to a location. The trailer is already setup in the Poteat field, but help with antenna and rig setup will be needed at 10 am. Winter Field Day will begin officially at 2 pm on Saturday Jan 28th.
Saturday 2 pm – 5 pm
Saturday 5 pm- 8 pm
Saturday 8 pm – 11 pm
Saturday 11 pm – Sunday 2 am
Sunday 2 am – 5 am
Sunday 5 am – 8 am
Sunday 8 am – 11 am
Sunday 11 am – 2 pm
PLEASE EMAIL WITH YOUR DESIRED STATION TIME
As with all outdoor events, we have to eat well and be comfortable. NC0G will fire up the smoker and smoke a pork butt and we will get hamburgers and hotdogs grilled on the BBQ. Below is a list of additional items needed to make this event a success.
specialty side items (cook’s choice)
sweet tea/unsweetened tea
dessert (cookies, cake, pie)
gas for generator
PLEASE EMAIL WITH ANY SUPPLY ITEMS YOU CAN DONATE
Let me know if you have any questions or concerns.