Category Archives: general

Cleaning up the classifieds

Please check the classified ads and if you have anything listed that has been listed more than 4 weeks, please contact if you’d like it to still be listed, otherwise it will be removed.

How Long Should This Antenna Be?

Since not everyone knows how long a dipole (or 1/4 wave vertical) antenna should be, because maybe they just don’t know or it’s been so long since they built one that they forgot, here’s an interesting website that has on it (among other things) some antenna calculators. For instance, your blogmaster (I know I just update the blog but that sounds so good I had to use it) wanted to know how long to make a 1/4 wave vertical antenna to put on a scanner for the aircraft band, so a quick search later and viola!

FEMA “Shelter in Place” Guidelines

The ARES newsletter from the ARRL recently had some guidance from FEMA on when they recommend you should shelter in place. Regardless of anyone’s opinion of FEMA, there’s some good information here…

  • FEMA Shelter-in Place GuidanceFEMA has released Shelter-in-Place Pictogram Guidance for 10 hazards and three building types. The pictograms provide clear, visual guidance to the public on shelter-in-place actions classified by both hazard and building type to ensure the public takes effective protective actions when instructed to shelter-in-place during emergencies.The guidance provides recommended interior locations for specific hazards, additional actions for protection, and the recommended duration for staying sheltered-in-place. The 10 hazards are:Active Shooter, Chemical Hazards, Earthquake, Flooding/Flash Flooding, Hurricane, Nuclear/Radiological Hazards, Pandemic, Thunderstorm, Tornado, and Winter Storm. The three building types are:Manufactured or Mobile Home, 1- or 2-Story Buildings, and Multi-story Buildings. The shelter-in-place pictograms can be used by community partners in multiple communication channels, such as posters, websites, just-in-time social media posts and by emergency managers for Integrated Public Alert & Warning System Wireless Emergency Alerts. The Shelter-in-Place Pictogram Guidance can be downloaded.The FEMA document is available at

While all of it may not be applicable, the parts that do apply are just another tool in one’s toolbox.

TARCFest is cancelled

The upcoming TARCFest held by the Tampa Amateur Radio Club that was scheduled for Saturday, August 21 has been cancelled.

But if you’re in the mood for a hamfest, there’s some good stuff coming…

  • 8/14 Fort Pierce Hamfest (
  • 10/8-9 Melbourne Hamfest (
  • 10/16 Gulf Coast Amateur Radio Club Hamfest (West Pasco)

Be sure to keep an eye out for upcoming events on the ARRL Hamfest calendar at

LARC Meeting Monday, August 9…and a special treat!

On Monday, August 9 the Lakeland Amateur Radio Club will have it’s regularly scheduled monthly meeting at 7:00 p.m. at the Parkview Baptist Church.

The “special treat” this month is that Fred Delany, K1DU and Jim Stewart, W4XDS will be selling some equipment from two of our recent Silent Keys. Fred will be selling a Kenwood TS-130S station that belonged to Top Smith, WB6ZEQ (SK). Included is the TS-130S with a power supply and a desk mic for $350. He will also have some Hustler mobile resonator coils. Jim will have an Astron RS-35 power supply that belonged to Chet Carruth, AB4XK (SK), along with other miscellaneous items. Cash is gladly accepted, any other payment methods or arrangements will have to be made with them.

See you at the meeting!

July Club Meeting and Barbecue Dinner

Historically (for at least two years), the first club meeting following Field Day consisted of going out to eat at some fair to middlin’ buffet. But not this year…

A couple of months ago the board decided to do something different this year. Since 2020 was a washout, and we haven’t done much in 2021 (although at least we’re meeting in person now), a decision was made to have a barbecue dinner, paid for by the club.

Dinner was catered by Mission Barbecue, and there was plenty to go around. We had a good turnout and everyone had a good time. We even sang Happy Birthday to a young visitor!

The August meeting (sans dinner) will be on Monday, August 9. See you there!

July LARC Meeting and Barbecue!

Remember, the July LARC meeting is on the second Monday in July, which is July 12. But wait…there’s more!

As previously announced, we’ll have a barbecue dinner Monday night catered by Mission BBQ! Dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m. and is free for all current (i.e. your dues are paid) club members. For anyone else, it’s $5 (which is a steal!).

See you there!

Tropical Storm Elsa…G.I. JOE style!

While it looks like Elsa (as of the 11:00 a.m. advisory on July 5) is going to provide us with a little rain but otherwise leave us alone, it is a good time, if you haven’t already done so, to review your hurricane preparedness. One thing that many folks don’t think about until it’s already raining is ensuring they have gas for their generator (if they have one). Another is a stock of non-perishable food and a water supply.

From a communications standpoint, it’s wise to make sure your HT batteries are in good shape for both your primary and (if you have one) your secondary. Also, make sure you’re familiar with repeaters in the Lakeland area that might be used in an emergency:

K4LKL (LARC Repeater) 146.685 (-600, PL 127.3)

KD4EFM (SARNET) 442.275 (+5.0, PL 82.5)

NI4CE (“The Big Stick”) 442.825 (+5.0, PL 100.0)

WC4PEM (Polk Emergency Management) 443.900 (+5.0, PL 127.3)

National Simplex Calling Frequency 146.52

Also, know how to program your radio without a computer…one day you might have to.

It would also be a good idea to familiarize yourself with the National Hurricane Center website ( as well as Polk Ares (

Hopefully we won’t have to use any of this information to deal with a widespread emergency, but as G.I. Joe says…”Knowing is half the battle!” šŸ™‚