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Awards & Endorsement Info

There has been a problem with the information concerning requirements for applying for Awards and Endorsements. Some of the info disappeared when the Site Provider did an upgrade. It is being worked on to get it back to what it should be. It did not affect all of the Awards & Endorsements but quite a few.

Bottom line is that if you are applying for or are in the process of working on Awards or Endorsements please send me an email stating what Awards or Endorsements you are going to apply for, working towards, or thinking about working towards and I will email you the official requirements for them. As soon as the Web Site is corrected I will let everyone know.

Good luck on any and all Awards and Endorsements and if I can help you with them let me know.

Dave KJ8V Awards Manager

posted by Dave KJ8V in GERATOL NET NEWS and have No Comments

NCS line up for next season

Following is a list of Net Control stations for the upcoming Net season that starts October 1st at 01:00 UTC or Wednesday September 30 at 9:00 PM EDT.

Monday nights Dale WG5N See note 1 below

Tuesday nights Harv AA4HF

Wednesday Bob AI4IL See note 2 below

Thursday Steve AC1DR

Friday Dave KJ8V See note 3 below

Saturday AC0SG Steve

Sunday W0FP Frosty

NOTE 1: Kenny KE9TC is a little under the weather and Dale WG5N has volunteered to do Monday nights until Kenny can get back on.

Note 2: Bob AI4IL has out of town work commitments and will miss October Nets. Someone will pick up the four Wednesday nights for Bob and he will be back in November.

Note 3: As of now Sandy and I will be in Florida the last two weeks of February and all of March. Please someone pick up Friday nights while we are gone. I will post instructions for Awards and Endorsement applications as I did last year for when we were in Florida.

PLEASE, when you check into the Net be sure to thank the NCS for volunteering their time to run the Net.

Have a great season coming up. Dave KJ8V

posted by Dave KJ8V in GERATOL NET NEWS and have No Comments

Geratoler Silent Keys

Sorry to have to report two Geratoler Silent Keys. Jim MO #1858, Scott NC #2247. RIP guys,, you will be missed. Dave KJ8V

posted by Dave KJ8V in GERATOL NET NEWS and have No Comments

FCC Proposes Fees for HAMS

Image result for fcc logo

In case you have not already heard, the FCC is looking to re-instate fees for Amateur radio licensees. The HAMS would pay a $50 fee for each amateur radio license application if the FCC adopts rules it proposed this week. Included in the FCC’s fee proposal are applications for new licenses, renewal and upgrades to existing licenses, and vanity call sign requests. Excluded are applications for administrative updates, such as changes of address, and annual regulatory fees.

The FCC proposal is contained in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in MD Docket 20-270, which was adopted to implement portions of the “Repack Airwaves Yielding Better Access for Users of Modern Services Act” of 2018 — the so-called “Ray Baum’s Act.”

“[A]pplications for personal licenses are mostly automated and do not have individualized staff costs for data input or review,” the FCC said in its NPRM. “For these automated processes — new/major modifications, renewal, and minor modifications — we propose a nominal application fee of $50 due to automating the processes, routine ULS maintenance, and limited instances where staff input is required.”

The same $50 fee would apply to all Amateur Service applications, including those for vanity call signs. “Although there is currently no fee for vanity call signs in the Amateur Radio Service, we find that such applications impose similar costs in aggregate on Commission resources as new applications and therefore propose a $50 fee,” the FCC said.

The FCC is not proposing to charge for administrative updates, such as mailing address changes for amateur applications, and amateur radio will remain exempt from annual regulatory fees. “For administrative updates [and] modifications, which also are highly automated, we find that it is in the public interest to encourage licensees to update their [own] information without a charge,” the FCC said.

The FCC also proposes to assess a $50 fee for individuals who want a printed copy of their license. “The Commission has proposed to eliminate these services — but to the extent the Commission does not do so, we propose a fee of $50 to cover the costs of these services,” the FCC said.

Deadlines for comments and reply comments will be determined once the NPRM appears in the Federal Register. Interested parties may file comments by using the FCC’s Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS), posting to MD Docket No. 20-270. This docket is already open to accept comments, even though deadlines have not yet been set.

If you ain’t crazy about forking over $50 to renew your license, feel free to submit your input to the NPRM, or if you are an ARRL member, fire off a note to your Section Manager and let him/her know you don’t like it. Or, maybe even if you do like it.

Kevin N1KL

Sources: FCC Website, ARRL News bulletin

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


Jamboree-on-the-Air, or JOTA, is the largest Scouting event in the world. It is held annually the third full weekend in October. JOTA uses amateur radio to link Scouts and hams around the world, around the nation, and in your own community.

Jamboree on the Air (JOTA) and Jamboree on the Internet (JOTI) will be held this year on October 16, 17, and 18. Register online as an individual or as a group.

JOTA details are available on the K2BSA website. The website menu will direct users to additional supporting information. K2BSA’s Jim Wilson, K5ND, says many locations are already offering virtual radio merit badge classes “and no doubt will be using similar approaches for Jamboree on the Air.” 

This year’s event will of course, need to follow all locally required COVID19 precautions. As a former Pack and Troop Committee Chairman, I recall conducting several JOTA events from remote Scout Camp locations as well as from my own ham shack. The boys were thrilled when they heard stations from all over the country, and world reply to our CQ. So if you have time that weekend, feel free to tune around and make a few JOTA participants happy.

Kevin N1KL

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

Geratoler Silent Keys

Sorry to have to report the September issue of QST listed two Geratoler Silent Keys. AF0F Jim MO #1858 and AE4SH Scott NC #2247. RIP Guys you will be missed.

posted by Dave KJ8V in GERATOL NET NEWS and have No Comments

Ham In Space !

Radio Amateur Takes Part in Historic First Commercial Human Spaceflight to ISS

Bob Behnken, KE5GGX, was one of two NASA astronauts who recently made spaceflight history. Behnken and Doug Hurley were the first astronauts since the 1970s to make a water landing, after their Crew Dragon capsule splashed down in the Gulf of Mexico. On May 30, the pair made history as the first live crew to be launched into space in a commercial vehicle, for a stay on the International Space Station (ISS), marking the return of human spaceflight to US soil for the first time in nearly a decade.

Bob Behnken KE5GGX (left)

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine proclaimed that the US was entering a new era of human spaceflight, noting that NASA was no longer the only option for US space travel. “We are going to be a customer,” he said. NASA has contracted with two companies — SpaceX and Boeing — to ferry astronaut crews to and from the ISS.

While part of the space station crew for 2 months, Behnken and Astronaut Chris Cassidy, KF5KDR, the sole American on board when their Endeavour capsule docked, carried out four spacewalks to install new batteries on the ISS.

The SpaceX Crew Dragon vehicle was designed for short-term missions, and Behnken and Hurley’s mission had only been expected to last a week. As a result, Behnken did not receive Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) training on the radio gear in the Russian sector. NASA subsequently decided to monitor the mission and make a decision on how long the Crew Dragon would stay. Cassidy fielded all ARISS school contacts.

Source: ARRL News

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


Greetings fellow GERATOLers. We hope you are all well, and enjoying the summer as best you can, given the current environment.

We have a few items of interest for our net members:

Image result for welcome images

First, we would like to welcome a new registration member to our website: Bill – W6ST, who hails from AZ. Bill has been a licensed ham operator for 50 years, so we hope he can join us on the air this fall. Especially for those of you looking to complete your 50/50 Award. Bill, that award is available for everyone on the net to work toward, and the requirements include working all 50 states, and also to work 50 operators, like yourself, who have been licensed for 50 years or more, hence the 50/50 aspect. Some of the guys have finished that challenging award, but I am sure there are several more who are looking to wrap it up in the coming GERATOL 2020/2021 Season. At any rate, welcome aboard, and we hope to hear you on this fall.

Second, our Awards Manager Dave, KJ8V has posted some sad news on the website, listing a few of our fellow GERATOLers as Silent Keys: Dave writes:K3TX Dave PA #990, WU6I Dave CA #1078 call reissued and Fred N9TA IN # 2031. RIP Guys you will be missed – Dave, KJ8V

Third, it won’t be very long, and before you know it, October 1st will be upon us, and the net will once again be in session. So if you have any antenna work remaining (As do I) let’s take advantage of the warm weather to make those changes/improvements, or in my case full replacements done before the net starts off. Thanks to fellow GERATOLer – Steve, N9SC G#2370, for kicking me in the butt, and getting me to purchase a new antenna as well as using his “Pressurized Launcher” to get the antenna rope up and over a huge pine tree !!

Finally, I’ve been speaking to our Awards Manager Dave, KJ8V about a new award for the coming season to whet the appetite of old and new net attendees, and he confirmed with me last time we spoke, that he and Sandy, KJ8W are brewing up a good one. I won’t let the cat out of the bag, but rest assured it should be fun, and if only one net member works toward this new award, it will reflect more activity than last year’s “dud” known as “The GERATOL INVITATIONAL AWARD” Hey, you can’t say I didn’t try….win some and lose some. At least everyone seemed to enjoy the 50/50 Award chase !!!

All the best, and take a minute to place a “Comment” on this POST, to welcome Bill aboard, or to make any comments about this POST.

Regards, Kevin N1KL Website Administrator

posted by Kevin in From the Administrator,GERATOL NET NEWS and have Comments (2)


Sorry to have to report that we 3 Geratoler Silent Keys reported in the August issue of QST. K3TX Dave PA #990, WU6I Dave CA #1078 call reissued and Fred N9TA IN # 2031. RIP Guys you will be missed. Dave KJ8V.

posted by Dave KJ8V in GERATOL NET NEWS and have No Comments


As a Worked All States net, we are continuing to share several fun facts about those “states” we are attempting to work, as we strive toward completion of the Unbelievable Operating Achievement Award, or any of the other awards and/or endorsements.

This week, we focus on the “Old Line State”. Maryland was the 7 th state in the USA; it became a state on April 28,1788.

Official seal of Maryland

The state motto is Fatti maschii, parole femine, which is Italian for “Manly deeds, womanly words”. Maryland is the only state with a motto in Italian.

The state bird is the Baltimore Oriole. The state flower is the Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta). The state reptile is the diamondback terrapin. The state crustacean is the blue crab.

Image result for Baltimore Oriole
State Bird – Baltimore Oriole

Maryland has many places important to the American Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, and the American Civil War. One of these places is Fort McHenry, which defended against the British Empire during the War of 1812. Another place is the Antietam National Battlefield, where the Battle of Antietam took place in 1862 during the American Civil War.

Founded by English Catholic settlers who wanted a place where they could freely practice Catholicism, Maryland was the seventh state to join the US. Maryland is known as the “Old Line State,” named after the Maryland Line, a regiment that fought in the American Revolution. Maryland surrounds most of the Chesapeake Bay, and the state is known for its Crabs and Crab Cakes.

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State Crustacean

Maryland is sometimes called “America in Miniature”. It has a wide topography that ranges from gently rolling hills to pine groves, to sandy dunes, and marshlands near the Chesapeake Bay. Maryland is home to lakes, rivers, and the Atlantic ocean. 400 types of birds, 90 species of mammals, 93 species of reptiles and amphibians, and hundreds of freshwater and marine fish inhabit the borders of Maryland.

Have fun tracking down MD during the upcoming season, and should you work someone from that state, you are now armed with some fun facts about the Old Line State.

Kevin N1KL

posted by Kevin in GERATOL NET NEWS and have No Comments