Amateur Radio at MakeIt Labs

On Saturday, January 28th the Nashua Area Radio Club (Nashua ARC) will be hosting a special event for Interested kids, parents, and friends in the community about the joy of amateur radio at MakeIt Labs in Nashua from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm. You may drop in at any time and stay as long as you like to participate! Among our activities, you can:

Get-On-The-Air Station (GOTA)

This is amateur radio at its best and what it’s known for! We invite you to get on the air and make a contact (we call them QSO’s — pronounced: cue-so) somewhere in the world! You might be able to make a new friend in Germany or even Japan! Making contacts sits at the heart of amateur radio and is an activity that brings people together. So don’t be shy, step up, and hit the push-to-talk button!

Satellite Station Display

The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT) began in 1969 to foster amateur radio participation in space research and communication. Currently, AMSAT groups help advance the state of the art in space science, space education, and space technology. Come learn about what components go into constructing a station capable of contacting a satellite and what antennas, and smart phone apps, operators use to keep a pulse on the satellite location.

Digital Amateur Television (DATV)

DATV Transceiver RackNot only are amateur radio operators granted privileges to transmit speech, but we also can send fast-scan data such as TV signals! Many operators have experimented with how to homebrew their own fast-scan TV stations, and our club president Fred (AB1OC) and our member Skip (K1NKR) have chosen to use construct a station which uses a Raspberry Pi (RPi) with an Arduino shield to sit at the heart of the transceiver. The RPi is the brains of the TV which runs Linux and among other things is responsible for sequencing, transmit / receive control, automatic VSWR monitoring, and a touch-screen controlling interface to configure and operate the system. Learn about what it takes to build and operate one of these stations. We may even be able to make a contact! More information can be found at

Kit Building with Nashua ARC

The Nashua ARC holds kit-building nights where both inexperienced and experienced members homebrew in a relaxed, learning environment. In the past we have built Pixie QRP (low-wattage) kits transmitting Morse Code on the 40m amateur band. But, on February 18 from 1 – 5pm, First Church in Nashua, Nauss Hall, we will build the digital oscilloscope kit DSO138 (shown to left). This kit comes with a clear acrylic case to protect it, build instructions, and among its specs has a 1 Msps sampling rate, 12 bit accuracy, 200 kHz bandwidth (good for audio signals), capable of freezing the waveform display, and comes with a 1Hz / 3.3V test source. We invite you to join us and will bring some kits with us. More info can be found on our website at

We hope you will join us for our event! Please bring friends, family, but most importantly we want you to have fun and enjoy this hobby with us!!

Contact Information

Brian Smigielski (AB1ZO):
Jamey Finchum (KC1ENX):

Our Club Moving Forward Into 2017

Our club has accomplished a great deal in the last year. We have grown to over 130 members. We have introduced many new people to Amateur Radio, helped them to earn their Licenses and worked with them to  get on the air and develop their knowledge and operating skills. We’ve also worked hard to provide opportunities to enjoy and learn about Amateur Radio for members of our club and for the Amateur Radio community which we are a part of.

Much of the credit for our club’s success this past year belongs to you, our members. We very much appreciate all that you have done to contribute to our success and the fun that we have all had as part of what we have done together. Your enthusiasm and support provides great encouragement and inspiration to the many new members who have joined us as well as to all of us who are part of our club’s Leadership Team.

We, as your club’s Executive Committee, have been working on a set of goals and plans to continue on this path during 2017 – to provide even better opportunities for our members to learn more about and to enjoy Amateur Radio, to continue to encourage people to join the Amateur Radio Service, and to provide opportunities for STEM learning for young people.

Our goals and focus for 2017 centers around continued success in and focus on the following areas to benefit both our members and our community as a whole:

To do these things and to be successful as a growing club, we are also pursuing status as a 501(c)(3) non-profit. This will enable our club to more effectively secure support from other groups to further our work towards these goals.

Each of us has taken ownership for creating a focus on meeting different aspects of our goals for this year. We are planning to share more about our plans for 2017 at our February Club Meeting.

We are asking that each of you, as members, to consider how you can get the most from all of these and the other opportunities that our club provides. We are working hard to try to create something for everyone that can provide enjoyable opportunities to have fun, to contribute, and to expand the value that we all create and derive by being part of the Amateur Radio Service. We are also asking each of you, our members, to consider helping us with these initiatives in 2017.

  • Jamey Finchum, KC1ENX – Membership Chairman
  • Anita Kemmerer, AB1QB – Activities Chairman
  • Brian Smigielski, AB1ZO – Programs Chairman
  • Mike Ryan, K1WVO – Interim Secretary
  • Wayne Wagner, AG1A – Treasurer
  • Greg Fuller, W1TEN – Vice President
  • Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC – President

Most Hams Collect QSL Cards, but Seriously Folks!

Some of us collect postage stamps; others coins or perhaps matchbooks. There are a few individuals who collect vacuum tubes. However, one Ohioan has set a somewhat loftier goal: amassing a collection of broadcast-type radio transmitters. Gerry Moersdorf, KC8ZUL,  began rounding up such transmitters more than 15 years ago, uprooting them from their former workspaces and hauling them back to a large warehouse-type building in a Columbus, Ohio, suburb.

Moersdorf is quite selective, though; not just any broadcast transmitter will do. He’s especially partial to representative examples from the likes of Collins, Gates, RCA and Western Electric — companies that once supplied transmitters for the majority of U.S. radio stations — and they must be vacuum tube-powered “big iron.” He has no interest whatsoever in the compact solid-state high-efficiency pipsqueaks from the last several decades. “I grew up in New Jersey, and we lived near a dump — actually in Jersey, everybody lived near a dump — and as kids, we used to go down to the dump to look for ‘All American Fives’ [five-tube AC/DC radio receivers] people had thrown out. “The highest-power one is a CCA AM2500D which was made in the 1970s,” he said. “It uses four 4-1000 tubes and can make 7,000 watts. The heaviest is a Collins 20T 1 kW model. With it, we like to talk about pounds-per-watt, not watts-per-pound. It came out in 1946 and weighs 5,700 pounds. It’s built like an armored battleship.”

Moersdorf has winnowed his collection down from a high of about 30 transmitters to a more manageable (and easily accommodated) 15, explaining that one factor in the decision was the lack of three-phase power when he recently relocated his collection and manufacturing business to Delaware, Ohio.


ARRL Kids Day on the Air

On Saturday, January 7th the Nashua Area Radio Club participated in the ARRL’s Kids Day on the Air.  Fred (AB1OC) and Anita (AB1QB) opened up their station for any youth that wanted to come and participate!  We also had snap circuits available with help from Greg (W1TEN) and CW paddles for those who wanted to practice up on their morse code.

Unfortunately, the weather did not cooperate with us as it was a snowy day with slippery road conditions.  We had a couple of youth not able to make the event due to the weather, but we still had a few show and they were very enthusiastic!

Connor (KC1GGX) started the event off by operating on 20 meters and made several contacts.  Despite having a little “mic fright” he warmed up nicely and didn’t want to share the mic when it was someone else’s turn!


Abby (KC1FFX) stopped by and had two friends – Samay and Jaegen – from her Destination Imagination team with her.  Abby got the ball rolling for her friends and  showed them how to create a pile up – just have a young YL voice and the calls start coming!  She then turned the mic over to Samay and Jaegen and helped them work through their first QSOs.  They soon were comfortable with the phonetic alphabet and they had fun spelling their names during their QSOs.

Despite the weather, the kids had a great time and it was a lot of fun to see the youth in our club improve their operating skills and watch the new kids make their first contacts!


Mark you calendars for Sunday, June 18th when the next ARRL’s Kids Day on the Air takes place.  I feel pretty comfortable saying there won’t be any snow… but, this is New England.