Canada 150: Special Event Prefixes for Canada’s Sesquicentennial

At the Dayton Hamvention, Radio Amateurs of Canada announced that it has secured permission for all Canadian Radio Amateurs to use special call sign prefixes to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation.

National, regional and local events will take place throughout 2017 to celebrate the anniversary and Canadian Amateurs will let their counterparts around the world know of our celebration by using the following special prefixes:

Amateurs and clubs whose regular call signs start with VA will be able to use the CF prefix instead of VA (for example, VA3RAC will be authorized to use the CF3RAC call sign).
Amateurs and clubs whose regular call signs start with VE will be able to use the CG prefix instead of VE (e.g., VE4RAC will be authorized to use CG4RAC).
Amateurs and clubs whose regular call signs start with VO will be able to use the CH prefix instead of VO (e.g., VO1RAC will be authorized to use CH1RAC).
Amateurs and clubs whose regular call signs start with VY will be able to use the CI prefix instead of VY (e.g., VY2RAC will be authorized to use CI2RAC).
These special prefixes are optional and Amateurs can choose if and when to use the special prefix vs their normal prefix at any time during the year. Stay tuned to the RAC website for additional information

For more information on Canada150 visit

SOTA – VHF/UHF Kit Upgrade

Interesting read.

Get out of the Radio Shack and Live Life

SOTA – Coax cable signal loss at 432 MHz

Using good quality RG58AU MilSpec coax at 144 MHz is a compromise of weight saving versus RF losses and the ability to coil a 5 metre length of coax to fit in the SOTA back pack. Yes I hear you, considering the losses in RG58AU it’s not ideal for VHF/UHF weak signal reception!

Using RG58AU at 432 MHz was a temporary measure but in doing so my UHF set up will have losses in the coax feedline in the order of 33% or more.  Assuming a perfect VSWR and no losses in RF connectors (unlikely), the cable loss will be 1.72 dB.  The reality is my UHF set up is more like 3 dB loss where half of the FT-857D power output is lost in the coax cable before any amount of RF signal is successfully radiated by the antenna.  It’s…

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SIM31 For The Digital Folks Out There

I discovered a relatively new mode last week.  It’s called SIM 31.  It’s an extension of PSK but I kinda look at as a cross between PSK and JT65.  With Sim31 and its preselected macros you can set it to auto pilot and let it do its thing.  It will answer a CQ call do two rounds and sign off.   There’s also a manual key where you can start typing just like in PSK. You also don’t need to worry about language barriers as you select which language you wish to use and translations are done for you.  The software is free and the setup is rather painless. Continue reading