Field Day Logging

If you are doing Field Day 2022 from home (we understand the whole world cannot do Field Day at Shaffer Park) you will want some logging software.

Most of us use the N3FJP software for Field Day. Current version is 6.63

If you plan to make fewer than 30 contacts, the Field Day app can be free.  A la carte, this one application is $8.99, or go whole hog and buy the entire N3FJP suite, every program, with upgrades for $59.99  An incredible value.

If you want something completely free the best alternative I know of is the N1MM+ logger.

I used N1MM+ for a few contests and while easy to use, the N3FJP software is just so much easier to set-up.   My contesting style will cause W3SOX and AF3I to scream “no”  but I typically wake up Saturday, cannot find anything better to do, turn the radio on, hear a contest, realize I can probably make a few Qs then I go looking for the software.  By the time that is done, the band has faded out and I didn’t do so well. N3FJP just seems easier to find the right contest software and install it.

While you are at it, the 13 Colonies Special Event is coming (July 1-7, 2022).  The N3FJP Amateur Contact Log easily handles that event.  After you launch AC Log, be sure to click on View >> 13 Colonies for an enhanced tracking tool developed by Scott, Kimberly, and Chris.

The PA QSO Party is coming as well on October 8 and 9, 2022.

For a lot more on computerized logging  and other fun radio stuff, please follow the trail:


See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT






Software can make radio more fun !

When I read that headline my first reaction was — “What?  Software can make radio more fun?”

YES, it is true.

Even a fairly modern ham radio can benefit from software enhancements.  FLRIG from W1HKJ  is part of the time-tested FLDIGI suite of amateur radio software.


This application is FREE (Free is good!) at


Using the simple on-screen controls (even works on a touch screen).you can change VFOs, frequency, band. mode, split, volume, squelch, mic gain, RF power, and others.

The programs run on Apple, Windows and Linux operating systems.  Because this popular software is free and is only used by a few thousand people, your anti-virus software may not like it.  Its fine, just give AVG a minute and it will install.

I found it is easier to set the notch filters, noise reduction, and other radio options using the FLRIG graphical interface than it is to go into the radio menus.


For a lot more on FLRIG, FLDIGI and other fun radio stuff, please follow the trail:


See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT






This is sort of old news. 

On April 19, 2022, the Federal Communications Commission reduced the fee for a ten year GMRS license to $35 from $70.  At the same time, the previously free, but had to pass an examination, amateur radio license fee went to $35 for ten years.

While I am sure there are people who paid for the GMRS license because that was “easier than studying for and passing a test”, I am sort of surprised at the number of licensed amateurs who are reporting buying the GMRS license now that the cost has come down.

While I think the GMRS service has a lot of value, and I see good reasons for being licensed in both, if you were already licensed as an amateur, and if you only bought the GMRS license because the fee came down, would you please reach out to me at the eMail address shown below and tell me what the appeal is?


I have heard from a couple of people saying that they want to explore GMRS.

OK…but are there other reasons?



For more information about radios, setting up your station  and another topics, follow the trail to:


See ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT



Field Day is the largest Amateur Radio operating event of the year.  An estimated 30,000 or more participants across North America take part in this annual event that combines various aspects of the Ham Radio hobby including Emergency Preparedness, competitive Radio-Sport, and just plain fun.



The American Radio Relay League’s annual Field Day always is the 4th full weekend in June. 

This year that works out to be Saturday June 25 and Sunday morning June 26, 2022.



After two years of COVID restrictions the Cumberland Amateur Radio Club is returning to Shaffer Park in Carlisle, PA.  Yes, Field Day at Shaffer Park.

If you could use a bit of help finding us please visit the ARRL Field Day locator

Type our Call Sign into the search bar:    K3IEC

Look for the GREEN pin.  Click to learn more about us.


Time Line:

Members of the Cumberland Amateur Radio Club will begin to set up their radio equipment and antennas Saturday Morning June 25, 2022 at 0900


Equipment and antennas will be taken down and saved by Noon on Sunday, June 26, 2022.  


Can I be part of your event?

We will have three ham radio stations on the HF bands as well as VHF capability. 

If you are interested in amateur radio, please feel free to stop by to meet and talk with the CARC Radio Road Show crew!  


Have you ever operated an amateur radio station before?  If you said “No” we can show you the ropes.  Please ask! 


Are you a licensed amateur radio operator but not yet a club member?  
We probably can make room for you.  Please bring along a copy of your license. 


Not able to come to Shaffer Park but you plan to participate in Field Day from your home?   Listen for K3IEC on the air!  We would like to make a radio contact with you.

More Info:


Questions?  Please contact


For more information about Field Day and another amateur radio topics, follow the trail to:


See ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT

Tangible Rewards !

Between March 19 and 26, 2022 eleven Cumberland Amateur Radio Club members operated Special Event station W3R, celebrating the 120th anniversary of the Rockville Bridge. At 3,720 feet, the Rockville Bridge is the longest Stone Arch Masonry Railroad Bridge ever built anywhere in the world.

We seem to live in  a digital world.  But at the May meeting, the W3R event operators received a unexpected TANGIBLE REWARD to go with the certificates they were emailed earlier.

The TANGIBLE REWARD came in the form of a stainless steel tumbler or travel mug, bearing the CARC logo and the call sign of the operator. 


The recipients were:


Andrew      AF3I Doug         KC3CPT Frank        KB3PQT
Garry          K3EYK Harry         K3EYL John          WA3KCP
Maura        KC3SJE Mike          KB3GPX Richard     N3EPY
Steve         N3FWE Valli            N8QVT  

Thank you all!   It was a pleasure to have so many club members pitch-in and pull-together to make the event a success.

In addition, an article about the W3R Special Event operation is also being published in the NRHS News, the monthly newsletter of the National Railway Historical Society.


What have you learned today?


For more articles please follow the trail below:


See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT


This contesting is nuts.  Why do we do it?

Scott Davis, N3FJP, the creator of the N3FJP line of computer logging programs from Affirmatech, answered a question on the N3FJP reflector with a link to the FAQ page.

This contesting is nuts. Why do we do it?

This question isn’t software specific, but the reasons for the tremendous fun of contesting aren’t always evident and they are too important to miss, especially for new folks just entering the hobby.  What draws us to spend major contest weekends happily glued to our radios?

Following CQ World Wide CW 2020, one of our club’s excellent, experienced contesters, having just made over 1,000 Qs, wrote on our virtual clubhouse text chat group, tongue in cheek and rhetorically: This contesting is nuts! Why do we do it?

Spent from the weekend, I couldn’t help but laugh out loud, but the question stayed with me. This contesting IS nuts.  It’s hard work, takes education, effort, dedication, experimentation, knowledge, ingenuity, planning and serious time in the chair. Why DO we do it?

It turns out that, at least for me, there are lots of great reasons!  Here are a few off the top of my head.  I’ll bet that you can add to this list…

Amateur Radio’s basis and purpose includes emergency communication.  There is no better opportunity than during a contest to determine, band by band, the strengths and weaknesses of your station.  If your station can’t make many contacts during a contest, you will be ineffective in passing emergency traffic out of your affected area.


And that is just one piece of how contesting enhances our emergency communications ability.  A contest provides the opportunity to:

Practice copying information from stations both weak and strong.
– Check the ergonomics of our station during extended operations.
– See how we hold up with significant time in the operator chair.
– Learn about propagation and what to expect at various times of the day on different bands.


And if the emergency communications contest benefits don’t stir your juices, many of us find the contest experience itself to be tremendous fun!  The contesting experience alone keeps us coming back and circling the next events on our calendars because:

– It is thrilling to communicate to every state, section and the four corners of the Earth, including some rare and exotic locations, with nothing but a piece of wire or metal in our yards, from the comfort of our homes and families.

– It is thrilling to set goals, like beating your previous personal best score, having the fastest QSO rate in the club for a one-hour period or scoring top five in the club and then striving to accomplish it.

– It is joyful to share a quick connection, however brief, with all the other stations that have become familiar on contest weekends.

– It is thrilling to watch the bands rise and fall like the tide over the course of the contest weekend, anticipating what may open next.

– It is thrilling to watch our individual and club’s collective QSO rates soar when the bands come alive, on our club’s real time leader board.

– It is thrilling to simultaneously, whole heartedly cheer our NEMARCS brothers and sisters on, while doing our very best to leave them in the dust!

– It is thrilling to recognize the very real accomplishments of our scores, individually and collectively, with our club total.  We know full well what goes into building a successful station and putting in a successful contest effort!

– It is joyful to exchange quick banter on our virtual clubhouse text chat group during propagation lulls, as well as share needed multipliers, mentor new folks and encourage everyone to do their best.

– It is thrilling to see our club rankings in print and moving up the list when the final results are released!

– It is thrilling to watch our club’s scoreboard participant numbers grow, seeing new guys jump in for the first times, knowing the fun that awaits them!

– It is thrilling to get that certificate in the mail, after you have placed well enough to earn one!

– It is fascinating to learn the strengths and weaknesses of our stations, that are so quickly revealed on contest weekends.

– It is thrilling, after the contest is over, to improve our stations, our antennas and our operating skills, to see what we can do better next time. In fact, the grand contest never ends.  We are always looking for that edge and helping each other find theirs!

– It is thrilling to befriend such a fine group of folks, with whom to share this amazing adventure!


This is really, really fun stuff!

Thank you, Scott for fun piece.


What have you learned today>


For more articles like this, please follow the trail below:


See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT


The History Guy tm  discusses Ham Radio’s contribution to world science in the 1950s.

Every now and then YouTube turns up a real gem.  is one of these. 

The History Guy tm takes a look at a pair of teenage amateur radio operators and their efforts to support American scientific bases in Antarctica. 



W3R QSL Cards

The W3R  Special Event station QSL cards have arrived from the printer.   They look fabulous.  Look to the right where you will find an image of the card.

Cumberland Amateur Radio Club sends its THANK YOU to Randy Dorman at for a great job.

The Special Event made 670 contacts between March 19 and March 26, 2022. 

From among the many people we worked during those eight busy days about 60 QSL cards have arrived at the home of our QSL Manager.  Those cards represent 28 of the United States of America and Canada.  We expect DX QSL Cards will take longer to arrive.

A duo of CARC Members have been huddled around the kitchen table burning the midnight oil for several days  admiring the QSL Cards we received from our friends and colleagues, checking our logs for the matching QSOs, and preparing our W3R QSL cards to be signed and mailed.

The cards will be mailed the first week of May.  A little birdie told your Editor that some cards are already in the mail.






FCC Application Fee Effective Date Announced — Contains clarification of the License Upgrade Exception.

The new Amateur Radio license application fees will take effect on April 19, 2022.  The Federal Communications Commission’s authority to impose and collect fees is mandated by Congress.

The $35 application fee, when it becomes effective on April 19, will apply to new, renewal, and vanity call sign applications. The fee will be per application.

Most current licensees  will not be charged the new FCC application fee until they renew their license or apply for a new vanity call sign.

Administrative updates, such as a change of name, mailing address or email address, will be exempt from fees.

VECs and Volunteer Examiner (VE) teams will not have to collect the $35 fee at exam sessions.  Once the FCC application fee takes effect, new and upgrade applicants will pay any exam session fee to the VE Team as usual.  Applicants will pay the new $35 FCC application fee directly to the FCC by using the CORES FRN Registration system (CORES – Login).

When the FCC receives the examination information from the VEC, it will eMail a link with payment instructions to each successful candidate who then will have 10 calendar days from the date of the eMail to make payment.   After the fee is paid and the FCC has processed the application, Examinees will receive a second eMail from the FCC containing a link to their Official License.  The link will be valid for 30 days.

Additionally, the FCC stated that applications processed and dismissed will not be entitled to a refund.  This includes vanity requests where the applicant does not receive the requested call sign.

The FCC published the notice in the Federal Register on March 23, 2022, stating that the amateur radio application fees, including those associated with Form 605 application filings, would become effective on April 19, 2022.


What have you learned today?

For more articles please follow the trail below:


See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT


Amateur Radio Classes Start April 7, 2022

Good Day,

This is Andrew, AF3I at the keyboard.

The fine folks at the Amateur Radio Club of the National Electronics Museum are presenting their On-line Operating Classes for 2022.

I attended many of the sessions ARCNEM presented in 2021.  I consider this program to be worthwhile and encourage our readers to carve out some Thursday evenings on their calendar.

In essence, you sign-up with the Event Sponsor once and then attend as many sessions, or as few sessions, as you wish.

If you are not able to attend all ten sessions simply select and make note of the topics that have the greatest appeal based on your interests and skills.  Mark them on your calendar. 

I don’t think you need to commit to attending or sitting-out specific sessions but you do need to register before the starting date — Thursday April 7, 2022.   Allow time for the sponsor to read and respond to your registration, and to send you the attendance credentials that you will need.

The class covers a wide variety of Amateur Radio subjects.  Details are in the reproduced eMail message (shown below) that I received from Rol Anders, K3RA. He is what I call the Lead Organizer for this, and similar events sponsored by the ARCNEM.

I counted 19 topics to be covered in 10 three-hour sessions.  Presumably there will be an opening topic, a break, and an ending topic each Thursday evening April 7 through June 9, 2022.

Act Soon — the first class is on Thursday April 7, 2022 — just about two weeks from the day I am writing this note.

We now switch to the eMail I received from Rol Anders, K3RA


We are once again doing our “Operating Classes” sponsored by the Amateur Radio Club of the National Electronics Museum.  You may have missed some or want to repeat some classes, or perhaps you have friends whom you think would enjoy these.  Please publicize.

Free weekly 3-hour Zoom sessions providing info on a wide range of Amateur Radio Operating Activities will start on Thursday April 7 and run through June 9 at 6:30 PM Eastern time.  Session will be taught by experts, and the subjects include:


All About Operating–A general Introduction

Amateur Radio Organizations—Local to International

Ham Radio Awards       

DXing-History and Tips from the Experts

QSLing-How to get that needed card for DXCC or WAS

VHF/UHF Weak Signal Work and “Roving”

Image Operating—Slow Scan and Fast Scan TV

Remote Station control over internet

Learning CW in the no-code era

Digital Modes—From RTTY to FT8 and beyond

Contesting—How to get started, tips for the beginner and intermediate contester

Logging Software—What’s available, how to use

Propagation—A general intro to HF Propagation

Amateur Satellites—How to get started              

Portable (backpacking) operation—Tips from an expert

Setting Up a Modern (or not so modern) HF Station

Lightning Protection and Grounding

Traffic Handling

Public Service, Emergency Communications      


A detailed syllabus will be published before the classes begin.  Attend them all, or any that you like, but you must register for the classes. 

To receive registration information, contact Rol Anders, K3RA, at             



Rol, K3RA


Image shows a member of the Cumberland Amateur Radio Club operating his radio as part of the Pennsylvania QSO Party,

I attended many of the sessions ARCNEM presented in 2021.  I consider this program to be worthwhile and encourage our readers to carve out some Thursday evenings on their calendar.

– Andrew — AF3I


Special Event Station W3R

Bridge scene — Norfolk Southern

The Rockville Bridge 120th Anniversary

Rockville scene — East end of the bridge



As I write this, operators from the club are hard at work getting W3R on the air. 

CARC Members are operating their stations using the 1X1 Special Event Call Sign W3R.
Operators have been on Phone, CW, and Digital.  You might even find an Operator using SSTV on 146.490 MHz during the evening hours.

This is a once in a lifetime celebration of the 120th Birthday of the Rockville Bridge, built in 1902 when “Stone” Brown was Chief Engineer of the Pennsylvania Railroad. 

Today the Rockville bridge carries Norfolk Southern and Amtrak trains in their journeys between Pittsburgh and eastern Pennsylvania.


Please visit the event page
for more information.


Big events call for BIG LETTERS.  You won’t want to miss out.


What have you learned today?

For more articles please follow the trail below:


See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT


This news blog headline was inspired by something that shows up now and then in my Monopoly game.
You probably will not “Go directly to jail.” but you may hear from the Volunteer Monitor crew if you unknowing do what I am about to describe.


The ARRL posted an article in their News section describing how there has been an increase in HF on-the-air operations taking place outside of the privileges available to the Operator based on his or her license class.

The article cites instances of Technician Class operators transmitting digital modes in the 40 Meter Band and in the 20 Meter Band.  The ARRL reminds its readers that Technicians do not have digital mode privileges in those bands. 

There is one HF band in which Technician Class operators may transmit digital modes.  That is the 10 Meter Band from 28.000 MHz to 28.300 MHz. 
Reminder — don’t crowd too close to the band edges.  Your entire signal must be contained within the band allocation.

The ARRL article also cites instances of General Class operators transmitting in portions of the band that are not authorized for their license class.


Help yourself stay within the bounds of your license class by downloading and posting one of the ARRL US Amateur Radio Band charts at your operating position.
ARRL offers the chart in a nice variety of sizes and shapes.  This is a free download for anyone.




As wars and rumors of wars flood the media, sometimes you just need to step away.

Go to the shack… Turn the transceiver on and do what you enjoy doing: whether you choose to hunt down new-to-you grid squares in FT8, ragchew, check into a net, chase DX, work a contest, or learn something new.    


What have you learned today?

For more articles please follow the trail below:



See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT

Straight Key Morse Code QSOs

QSO #1 — Jim WE5E and John WA3KCP have an on-the-air conversation using straight keys to send Morse Code while Lynn NG9D listens.

QSO #2 — Lynn NG9D and John WA3KCP hold their own conversation upon completion of QSO #1.


Both QSOs were captured on video and audio by NG9D in real-time as the operators chatted on-the-air.


WA3KCP is a member of the Straight Key Century Club as well as the Cumberland Amateur Radio Club.


Good Day,

As the due-date for the Cumberland Amateur Radio Club Monthly Newsletter and Meeting Agenda approached your Editor had not received very much material from which to fill the newsletter.  He took action to fill the otherwise empty newsletter space with recipes our readings might find interesting.

In the mean time, some new material has caught the attention of your Editor and will be used in place of the recipes.

For those who really want the recipes I decided to post them here.    Jackpot Pie and Cottage Cheese Pie

  Jackpot Pie   


2 pounds ground beef

1 tablespoon butter

½ cup chopped onion

Salt and Pepper (to taste)

2 cans (10 ¼ ounces each) condensed tomato soup

3 cups water

8 ounces egg noodles

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

½ cup sliced stuffed olives

2 cans (20 ounces each) cream-style corn

1 cup grated cheese (any kind)



Brown beef in butter.  Remove beef from pan

Saute onion until tender.

Add to meat along with salt and pepper to taste, soup, and water.

Add uncooked noodles and simmer 10 minutes.

Add Worcestershire sauce, olives, corn, and cheese.

Bake at 350° F for 40 minutes.


Serves 8.

Ruth Higgins,

Tenney United Methodist Church

Salem, New Hampshire



  Cottage Cheese Pie  


4 eggs, separated

16 ounces cottage cheese

1 ½ cups sugar

Juice and grated rind of 1 lemon

1 baked 10 inch pie shell


Essential Equipment:




Put yolks, cottage cheese, sugar, and lemon juice and rind into blender and blend at medium speed.

Beat egg whites until stiff and fold into blended mixture.

Turn into pie shell and bake at 375° F for 35-40 minutes, or until set.


Serves 8.

Jeanette M. Miller,

Morris Congregational Church

Morris, Connecticut




Notes from the Shack…

A NEW Technician License Exam question pool has been released!

Have you been studying for your Technician License Exam?  You probably have been reading a Study Guide or a License Manual containing Questions and Answers to help you prepare for the test.

It is important for you to know that there is a new question pool which takes effect JULY 1, 2022.

  • Before July 1, 2022, if you take a Technician License Exam it will use the questions in the CURRENT POOL. If your Study Guide or License Manual covers July 1, 2018 through June 30, 2022 it will have these questions and answers and they will match the Technician License Exam. 
  • As of July 1, 2022 and beyond, the Technician License Exam will use questions selected from the newly released pool!  Some of those questions will be new.  You probably have not yet seen those questions.

 If you are planning to take the Technician License Exam on or after July 1, 2022 you probably want to familiarize yourself with the new question and answer pool.  If you are in the market for a new Study Guide or License Manual look for the effective dates and purchase one that covers July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2026.

 Press Release:

ARLB002 New Technician Question Pool Released, Effective July 1, 2022

The National Conference of Volunteer Examiner Coordinators (NCVEC) Question Pool Committee (QPC) has released the 2022 – 2026 Technician Class FCC Element 2 NCVEC Question Pool Syllabus & Question Pool into the public domain.  It’s available as a Word document or PDF.  The three graphics required for the new Technician question pool are available within the documents, or separately as PDF or JPG files.

The new pool incorporates some significant changes compared to the 2018 – 2022 pool.  Its 257 questions were modified slightly to improve wording or to replace distractors; 51 new questions were generated, and 62 questions were eliminated. This resulted in a reduction of 11 questions, bringing the total number of questions in the pool from 423 to 412. The difficulty level of the questions is now more balanced, and the techniques and practices addressed have been updated.

The new 2022 – 2026 question pool is effective July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2026, and must be used for Technician-class license exams administered on or after July 1, 2022.

For more on the public service, the ARRL, contesting, DXing and other fun radio stuff, follow the trail to:

 See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT


New Low-Power Limit for ARRL HF Contests Starting January 1, 2022

Effective January 1, 2022, the power output limit for low-power categories has been lowered to 100 watts PEP from the current 150 watts PEP.

With the exception of ARRL Field Day, this change is in effect for all ARRL- sponsored HF contests as well as the IARU World HF Championship.

This change has been implemented to standardize the low-power categories in the contesting community.

Additionally, the previous 150 watt limit is no longer applicable to low power contest categories because most modern HF transceivers only have a power output of 100 watts or less.


Notes from the shack…                

 Field Day 2021

The December 2021 QST has arrived. 
Let’s check the club’s Field day 2021 results.

Aggregate score from eight entries on behalf of Cumberland ARC  was 3,975 points.

The club call, K3IEC, was one of 22 Class 3E entries submitted nationwide and one of two Class 3E entries submitted from the ARRL Eastern Pennsylvania section.. 

This local entry represents the collective efforts of a group of CARC Members who operated three Field Day stations powered by an emergency generator.  The group consisted of eager volunteers who braved the elements to ensure that K3IEC would be on-the-air and logged by other Field Day operations across North America.  Recognition is awarded to members KC3KPD, KB3PQT, K3EYK, N8QVT, W3VRE, KC3SJE, and AF3I for their jobs well-done.  Additional efforts put forth by friends, family, and agency officials brought total participation in the K3IEC operation to twelve.

Incremental support was provided by CARC Members who operated their Home Stations as Class 1D, making Field Day contacts, and submitting logs on behalf of their club. They include:  K3EYK, K3EYL, KB3PQT, N3FWE, W3JJB, WA3KCP, and AF3I.


In total, there were 174 entries among all Field Day Operating Classes (A-F) from our ARRL section, Eastern Pennsylvania EPA.

Other ARRL sections demonstrating high levels of participation include:

Ohio                           OH      249 entries

North Carolina         NC      215 entries

Illinois                        IL         197 entries

Virginia                      VA       195 entries

North Texas              NTX    189 entries

So as you can see, EPA was the 6th most active section.


For more on the ARRL, Field Day, Contesting  and other fun radio stuff, follow the trail to:


See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT

Passing the Torch

After fifteen years of leading the Cumberland Amateur Radio Club to new achievements including the highest membership headcount ever, Andrew Forsyth, AF3I decided to listen to his wife and not run again for the presidency.  Fortunately for our club, Andy is sticking around to maintain the website and other functions where his experience is desired.  

Frank Mellott, KB3PQT has been elected President and Doug Stenger KC3CPT has stepped into the Vice-President’s office.   Garry Fasick K3EYK, Maura Smith-Mitsky KC3SJE and Richard Johnson N3EPY are continuing to serve the club and fill their roles as Treasurer, Secretary and Membership Secretary respectively.  

CARC Club Members — Please see the new monthly column “From the President’s Desk” which appears on a new menu page in the password protected MEMBER AREA of this website.

Or, follow this link:


See ‘ya down the log.

Frank KB3PQT