The Geratol Net

75 Meter Extra Class WAS Net

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The ARRL International Grid Chase!

A new and exciting operating event will kick off on January 1, 2018, at 0000 UTC (New Year’s Eve in US time zones), when the ARRL International Grid Chase gets under way. The year-long event hopes to build on the success of the highly successful 2016 National Parks on the Air (NPOTA). The objective is to work stations on any band (except 60 meters) in as many different Maidenhead grid squares as possible, and then upload your log data to ARRL’s Logbook of The World (LoTW). Registration is free, and it costs nothing to use LoTW. Many hams are familiar with grid squares from the VHF/UHF and satellite realms, and everyone lives in one. ARRL’s VUCC is based on grid squares, and some contests on HF, as well as on VHF and UHF, also use them as a scoring factor.

John Morris, G4ANB, came up with the locator system, which the VHF Working Group adopted in 1980 at a meeting in Maidenhead, England — thus the term “Maidenhead grid square.” The system divvies up the entire globe into 324 fields, each containing 100 grid squares 1° latitude by 2° longitude in size. With 32,400 potential grid squares, it’s not likely that anyone will run out of challenges, even though some grid squares are surrounded entirely by water, are in areas that are uninhabited, or are difficult to access.
If you don’t know your grid square, David Levine, K2DSL, has an online calculator. Just enter a postal address, ZIP code or a call sign, and his site will tell you the grid square for that location. For example, enter “W1AW” and the site will return “FN31pr.” For the purposes of the ARRL International Grid Chase, though, just the two initial letters and the two numbers that follow (e.g., FN31) are all you need to know.

Once you get active in the chase and start uploading your log data, each new grid square contact confirmed through LoTW will count toward your monthly total. Getting started is simple: Turn on the radio and call CQ or “CQ Grid Chase,” or listen for others doing the same. Make the contact, exchange grid squares, log it, and move on to another. At the end of each month, your totals on the Grid Chase Leader Board will reset to zero, although the system retains all monthly data to determine top finishers in various categories at the end of the year.
Any contact you make in 2018 can count for your Chase score; it doesn’t have to involve an exchange of grid squares. As long as the other operators participate in LoTW, you’ll get credit automatically when they upload their logs. This means that contest contacts will also count, as will contacts with special event stations, or other on-air activity that uses LoTW to confirm contacts.

Some radio amateurs live in sparsely populated grid squares, and if you’re one of those, you could find yourself handling a pileup! Expeditions to hard-to-reach or rare grid squares will undoubtedly evolve. You also can travel to one of those grid squares yourself. Some vehicle or hand-held GPS units can be set to display when you are in a particular grid square. Apps are available for smartphones or tablets, such as Ham Square for iOS devices or HamGPS for Android devices.
There are no restrictions on modes or bands, as long as they are legal. Satellite contacts are valid for the Chase. The event is open to all radio amateurs.

As all contacts are uploaded to LoTW, participants may use their contacts toward other ARRL awards, in addition to the overall monthly and annual Grid Chase recognitions. These other ARRL awards include the grid-based VHF-UHF Century Club (VUCC) and Fred Fish Memorial Award, as well as Worked All States (WAS), WAS Triple Play, DX Century Club (DXCC), and Worked All Continents (WAC).
Complete details of the ARRL International Grid Chase will appear in the December 2017 issue of QST. The digital edition is available on Friday, November 10.

For more information, contact the ARRL Contest Branch.


posted by Kevin in From the Administrator,General Ham Radio News and have No Comments

How To Register a New Account

I’ve added a page to guide everyone through the registration process. You can find it under the F.A.Q. menu category.

I also disabled the plugin that limited the number of login attempts that I think was giving people concern. I also changed the ReCAPTCHA to only be used on registration and not bug people who are already logged in.

I hope this makes things go smoother for everyone.


posted by god in From the webmaster and have Comments (2)

User Status Changes

The following operators have been assigned the ability to make “Comments” and to “Post” items on the website:

Welcome aboard, and thanks for taking the time to update your account and/or to register as new participants….

Others who have registered, but have not used their call sign as part of their user name and/or e-mail while registering, will retain “read” only privileges on the website.

WG8AR – GEORGE                      K0HB – HANS                        NF4F – MICHAEL

KJ8V – DAVE                                 N5MJ – MIKE                         KA5T – LARRY

NF0J – DAVE                                 W0WT – WARREN                N0HD – BRUCE

N7EN – CONRAD                         W4RG – RAY                           AB8S – GAIL

VA7DP – DOUG                            W0FP – FROSTY                    K0MC – MICHAEL

WD4SCZ – EMIL                          W6VY -BOB                             W0QS – RICK

K9MQ – MARK                             AA0ZP – FRANK                    W3GRG – STEPHEN

N3RC- ROGER                            W4KH – JACK                         KE9TC – KENNY

N2RB – RAY                                 N0SJ – JAMES                         KN0L – STEVEN

K2MF – BARRY                           W4WCR – RUSTY                  VE3VSA – CHARLES

N7UT – DOUG                            AB3RS – RANDY                    KA5T – LARRY

AC9GK – STEVE                         WG5N – DALE                        N0MN – RICHARD

WW8X – JOE                              NO0B -JIM                              AA7VR – MICHAEL

W0CI – JERRY                           KJ8W – SANDY                      WM0G – JACK

K3BO – BARRY                          N4RP – ROSS                          N7BD – DON

WX4H – MIKE                           W9WY – JOHN                       WV2M – FRANK

N9SC – STEVE                           WD1Z – BUD                            NW9M – MARK

W4WLF – TOM                         KA0O – DOUG                         WB5MEX – HURSHEL

K0MXL – JOHN                       NW9M – MARK                       WD4LYV – WAYNE

KJ8F – SHARON                      NS3X – MARK                          AD4BP – BOB

K9TPW – TIM                            K3BOB – BOB                          WS8X – JOE

W9EGB – ED                              VE3FMC – RICK                     K5KHZ – DAN

K0FD – DAN                              WY3W – JIM                            AE4GH – PHIL

WE0FC – FOY                            AI4IL – BOB                             AA4EX – RAY


Please feel free to contact Kevin, N1KL at if any of the information above is not accurate.

posted by Kevin in From the webmaster and have Comments (4)

Logins, Comments and the like

Kevin and I have been working on this web site and we have noticed a few people have gone ahead and created accounts. It’s great to see the interest.

I have approved all the registrations that were not obvious spam. One problem for any site like this is, there are all kinds of people and bots that want to exploit it for advertising or worse reasons. To prevent nasty posts, we have set things up so that every new user that registers needs to be activated manually by an administrator. If you register and it looks like nothing happened, that’s why.

To help us out so that we can tell the real people from the spammers, to be approved we need to see a callsign in either the user name or the email address. For most of us, that is not a problem, we can do one or the other.

Comments will be allowed on posts, such as this, that appear under NEWS on the right, but comments will not be allowed on pages, such as the rules for an award, or other static information.

We hope that some discussion will be relevant to the topics posted and increase interest in the web site. Please help keep them on topic and civil so they can continue.

The settings and inner workings of the site are complicated and might not work out perfectly at first. If there is a glitch, please bear with us.


posted by AE2T in From the webmaster and have Comments (4)

New Links Added to GERATOL Site

Today we added several Ham Radio links to the GERATOL Website,  that may serve as valuable resources not only for pursuing GERATOL activities, but in your day to day resource needs for your Ham Radio hobby.

They include:

  • FCC Universal Licensing System Link
  • QRZ Call Sign Look Up and Ham Radio Forum Link
  • eHAM Ham Radio Resource Link
  • Quarter Century Wireless Association (QCWA) Link
  • AE7Q Call Sign Database and Vanity Call Availability Link

These links may be found on the FILES page of the GERATOL Website

posted by Kevin in From the webmaster,General Ham Radio News,Uncategorized and have Comment (1)

Special Thanks

                                                                        THANK YOU        

At the risk of getting my web site mentor mad at me, I would like to take a minute to thank Al,  AE2T for his efforts in keeping the GERATOL web site up and running for so many years.

We reference the web site to all our new check-ins as a resource for all matters GERATOL.   In addition, many of us use the site to get the details on new awards, endorsements, etc. etc.

The site is easy to navigate for new and old users alike,  and all key pointers can be found right on the opening page.

Al recently documented his desire to retire from his GERATOL Web Site efforts as a post on the site,  and take a well deserved break.  We want to thank  him for is efforts, and appreciate his continued support of the GERATOL Net.

Kevin  N1KL



posted by Kevin in From the webmaster and have Comments Off on Special Thanks

New award – 50/50 Award

The GERATOL Board  recently approved the launch of our latest and very challenging award called the 50/50 Award.

The gist of this award is to work all 50 states, in keeping with the tradition of our net, and in addition you must work 50 stations who have been continuously licensed for 50 years or more !!!  See details below:


                                               GERATOL NET 50/50 AWARD RULES

The GERATOL NET 50/50 Award is open to all U.S. and Canadian amateurs, with operating privileges in the Extra Class portion of the 75 Meter amateur band. Qualifying contacts for the award, must be made 03/01/2017 or later. Candidates must also use the GERATOL 50/50 Award form, to log and summarize their results.
Successful candidates must complete both of the following criteria to qualify for the award:
1. Make and log contact with each of the 50 United States, starting on 03/01/2017 or later.
a. Two way SSB QSO’s only are permitted
b. Contacts must be made in the Extra Class portion of the 75 Meter Ham band

2. Make and log contacts with Amateur Radio Operators, who have been continually licensed 50 or more years, as confirmed by the station operator being contacted. All QSO’s must be made 03/01/2017 or later.
a. Two way SSB QSO’s only are permitted
b. Contacts must be made in the Extra Class portion of the 75 Meter Ham band
c. Stations with 50 + years licensed can be from any state in the United States
d. Multiple states can be used. For example, a successful candidate for the award, can work as many
licensed hams with 50+ years in a state as he/she can make QSO with

For Example: Working six hams from New Jersey with 50+ years, all six QSO’s would count toward the total of 50 stations with 50+ worked

Stations worked for either segment of the 50/50 Award, (W.A.S. or Years Licensed) may have any formatted call sign, 1×2, 2×1, 2×2, 1×3 or 2×3.

No QSL cards are needed to complete this award. Applications are based on the honor system.

Be sure to inform the Awards Manager how you would like to have your name appear on the award: For example: John A. Smith, or Johnny Smith, etc.

Candidates who qualify for the award, must send the completed 50/50 Award Log form, along with __$ 5___ to the GERATOL Awards Manager, Dave Ertel KJ8V to apply for the award. Please make $5.00 check payable to Dave Ertel.

50 50 AWARD 4 Sample
50 50 Award Application Form


posted by AE2T in From the webmaster and have Comments Off on New award – 50/50 Award

Site updated

I just updated the site to reflect the most recent names of Net Officials and their correct e-mail and/or physical addresses.   In addition, I posted the latest set of RULES for the Veteran’s Salute Award, which references the tool in GNEC that Frosty created for tracking progress of same,  along with a link that shows you a SAMPLE of the award.  In addition I have added the RULES for the latest Award, the 50/50 Award, along with a link showing a SAMPLE of how that award appears.

All the best,  Kevin  N1KL



posted by AE2T in From the webmaster and have Comments Off on Site updated

All good things…

This site has been dormant for quite a while now. I have no way of telling how useful it is to the net membership, or if it is even being read. Yeah, there are site statistics, but they are pretty sterile and don’t tell much.

I have had discussions with Dave, KJ8V about the disposition of the web site. I believe Frosty, W0FP, and Kevin, N1KL,  have been in the loop as well. But no solution has arisen.

I receive little input from the net. Since I am not active on the net, I can not supply information myself. At this point in my life, I would rather be doing other things anyway. I have offered to let others have access to the page and directly add content, but there have been no takers.

We have the technology here to do a outstanding job of promoting the net and interacting with the members, but are letting it go to waste.

Instead, we are using a horrible Yahoo Group. Sorry, but I just hate that I have to join another crappy Yahoo Group to stay in touch. We could have done everything – repeat everything – that we got with Yahoo here, had someone just asked instead of going ahead and doing it. Just because you can do something, doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. The beginning of the Geratol Yahoo Group was the beginning of the end of this web site.

I’m not mad. I’m not faulting the person that started the Yahoo thing, who I’m not going to mention because he’s a great guy who thought he was helping, I’m just stating the facts.

So, after the last discussion I had with Dave, some months ago now, I have heard nothing back. Today, I am drawing a line in the sand. As of January 1, 2018, this site will end. I will stop hosting it and I will let the domain expire. If anyone wants to take things over and keep it running, you have until then to think about it. It can remain hosted here, or the domain can be moved to other hosting. It can stay as is on a WordPress system, or the new webmaster can do it however they want. But the window of opportunity is now defined.

Thank you for all your support over the years and the kind words as well. I enjoyed providing this site and the challenges with it over the years.

  • Al, AE2T
posted by AE2T in From the webmaster and have Comments Off on All good things…

GNEC Update

The GNEC data file has been updated to version 1.26. It’s available on the Files page.

posted by AE2T in From the webmaster and have Comments Off on GNEC Update