Welcome to the new blog for Spartanburg Amateur Radio Club. While working on the newsletter for the club we realized that it would be nice to have a way to communicate with club members in a more consistent way that would allow us to get important events and news out to members quickly. Getting information from the blog is easy, sign up to follow the blog and you will receive an email notifying you that something has been posted or just check the blog periodically to see the latest new


Monday, July 28, 2014


To All ARRL Members of the Roanoke Division:

The ARRL and Amateur Radio need your help as soon as possible.  This is
not a request for funding, but your assistance with HR-4969, a bill that
would extend the protection of PRB-1 to those affected by Covenants,
Conditions and Restrictions (CC&R’s).

Nearly 30 years ago, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
released PRB-1, an order that required municipalities to offer
“reasonable accommodation” for outside amateur radio antenna
installations.  This order cited a “strong federal interest” in
supporting effective amateur radio communications.  The order stopped
short of requiring communities with CC&R’s to do the same.

The FCC’s argument was that they did not want to interfere with
“private contracts” between Homeowner Associations (HOA’s) and
hams.  In reality, however, it is generally a unilateral contract where
an individual’s only option is to decide NOT to buy a parcel of land
that is burdened with CC&R’s. 

Perhaps the most pervasive threat to Amateur Radio is restriction of
the ability to have effective outdoor antenna systems, primarily due to
the exponential growth of communities with CC&R’s.  From the Community
Associations Website (CAI), in 1970 there were 10,000 communities with
HOA’s, involving 2.1 million residents.  By 2011, there were 314,200
communities involving 62.3 million residents!  Accordingly, in many
areas, it is virtually impossible to find a suitable home that is not
affected by CC&R’s.  Moreover, these HOA’s are not even required to
“come to the table” to discuss the possibility of a ham putting up
an effective outdoor antenna system.  Many HOA’s ban them outright!

HR-4969 is a bill that would instruct the FCC to extend PRB-1
protection to homes and property encumbered with CC&R’s. It is
entitled “The Amateur Radio Parity Act”.   It is the result of a
bipartisan effort led by Rep Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) with initial
co-sponsorship by Rep Joe Courtney (D-CT).  Currently, there are five
cosponsors, including Rep Mike McIntyre (D-NC-7) from our Division.
The ARRL’s goal is at least 30 cosponsors.

Here’s where we need your help.  We need cosponsors!  We need letters
and individual visits with your Representatives at their district
offices during the Congressional recess in August.  All the tools you
will need are available (including a sample letter) on the ARRL
website:  www.arrl.org/hr-4969 .  The site is being updated often, so
be sure to check the website daily.  Additionally, our ARRL president
Kay Craigie N3KN has established a twitter feed: @KayCraigieN3KN. The
hashtag for the bill is #hr4969.

One of the reasons why this is an “all hands on deck” effort is
that we have substantial opposition.  The Community Associations
Institute has already sent a communication to all its members, advising
them to oppose the bill.  Associa, a community management agency, will
be meeting with Rep Kinzinger to have him “reconsider” his
sponsorship of the bill.  So, we need ALL ARRL MEMBERS in the Roanoke
Division to participate.   The ARRL’s 501(c)3 status does not allow
us to make this request of non-members, however, they are free to act
on their own, as it is in Amateur Radio’s best interest to do so.
Further information will follow.  Please visit www.arrl.org/hr-4969 and
fill out your sample letter today.  Instructions on sending it to ARRL
Headquarters (to be hand delivered to your Representative) are on the

Thank you!
’73 de Jim N2ZZ

ARRL Vice Director
Roanoke Division
for Dennis Bodson W4PWF, ARRL Roanoke Division Director

ARRL Roanoke Division
Director: Dennis Bodson, W4PWF

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Now Broadcasting Fo Time from Cale Nelson, K4CDN

Cale Nelson, K4CDN has launched the Fo Time Podcast.  Fo Time, the other Ham Radio Podcast, is currently live on iTumes, Spreaker, and available for download and streaming on the Fo Time site.  Cale says "Fo Time is an alternative ham radio podcast geared towards the younger operator or someone who may be interested in becoming a ham.  Of course, seasoned amateurs may also enjoy the show and are welcome to listen in and participate."  You can find the podcast at   www.amateurradio15.com and has been added as a link at the bottom of this blog page under SPARC Links.  Hope you enjoy the podcast.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014


The SPARC Summer Supper will be held on July 19, 2014, at The Junction Restaurant at 6 pm.  The Junction is located off of Heron Traffic Circle in Spartanburg, SC.  The address is 150 Simuel Road.  In addition to spending time with friends on Saturday evening we will be celebrating Fritz, W4NTO's 95th birthday. So make your plans now to join us for food, fun and fellowship on Saturday night.  Fritz might even share the story of his kiss from last year's summer supper!