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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Mon 09, 2021 3:29 am 
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madlabs wrote:
Something about being *almost* involved in EMS that brings out the pompous self important buffoonery in a certain type.
Sadly there is something I have concluded through observation over many years. Too many who gravitate to positions of authority are the one's who should not be in such positions. They are the one's who want authority for all the wrong reasons and often abuse their power in the desire to look and feel important.

Sometimes it is a shame that it is not possible to draft into those positions people that you know would not be self serving and would honestly try to do a good job. However, I respect their right to avoid that which they do not want.

Curtis Eickerman

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Mon 09, 2021 4:01 am 
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Eickerman wrote:
madlabs wrote:
Something about being *almost* involved in EMS that brings out the pompous self important buffoonery in a certain type.
Sadly there is something I have concluded through observation over many years. Too many who gravitate to positions of authority are the one's who should not be in such positions. They are the one's who want authority for all the wrong reasons and often abuse their power in the desire to look and feel important.

Sometimes it is a shame that it is not possible to draft into those positions people that you know would not be self serving and would honestly try to do a good job. However, I respect their right to avoid that which they do not want.

Curtis Eickerman


It's an old expression.

"Too big for his britches".

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Tue 10, 2021 6:27 pm 
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Location: Tucson, Arizona, 85704
One of my former neighbors had an array of VHF/UHF gear in his car. I asked him if he was a Amateur club member. He said no, and claimed it was a waste of time and money joining.

It took me a few months of joining two local Ham radio clubs to realize he was right.

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Wed 11, 2021 4:07 pm 
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Location: Pasadena CA USA
I can well imagine how the self important people would act during a fire. I had a radio set to the telephone company repeater in Pasadena California and there was no traffic. Then one fellow announced that he was listening. Another fellow came back to him and said hello. Then a third fellow came on and asked them to leave the repeater because it was in use. That got my interest and I kept listening. What I head was about every 30 minutes one station called in to the main station about bicycles passing his position. It was a bicycle ride. The use of the repeater was very limited and could have easily been done while the repeater was in normal use.


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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Thu 12, 2021 2:25 am 
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rgbiker wrote:
One of my former neighbors had an array of VHF/UHF gear in his car. I asked him if he was a Amateur club member. He said no, and claimed it was a waste of time and money joining.

It took me a few months of joining two local Ham radio clubs to realize he was right.


Same here

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Thu 12, 2021 2:28 am 
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J. Hill wrote:
I can well imagine how the self important people would act during a fire. I had a radio set to the telephone company repeater in Pasadena California and there was no traffic. Then one fellow announced that he was listening. Another fellow came back to him and said hello. Then a third fellow came on and asked them to leave the repeater because it was in use. That got my interest and I kept listening. What I head was about every 30 minutes one station called in to the main station about bicycles passing his position. It was a bicycle ride. The use of the repeater was very limited and could have easily been done while the repeater was in normal use.


Interesting!

Hams can use a telephone company repeater?

Or was this back in the day?

Not being sarcastic, I am truly interested.

Around 1971 I heard a Bell Telephone satellite on an old Navy receivee.

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Thu 12, 2021 4:47 am 
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Location: Pasadena CA USA
I should have been more clear. The repeater is owned and operated by employees of the telephone company, the telephone company radio club. It is located in a telephone company building. All local hams call it the telephone company repeater. It is an open repeater. Well, usually open. There is another repeater owned by the JPL radio club, and local hams call it the JPL repeater.


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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Thu 12, 2021 11:35 am 
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Location: Montreal, Quebec
I wonder how many ham club members are out there thinking "gee, those newcomers are not very friendly"?

In 1972, how were you going to find hams without going to a ham club? Walk around until you see a big antenna, and ring the bell? I did that (well I phoned first), he wasn't helpful, though I still have the oil filled capacitors he gave me. It was a different world.

The ham club had the code and theory class. When I joined late, the fee included club membership. Going to the meetings seemed like the thing to do. But there was always some speaker, that was the focus of the meetings. Sometimes they came from out of town, Bill Dunkerly came to speak about the next ham satellite, I think Oscar 7. There was also the famous meeting in May 1978, the first public demonstration of amateur packet radio. Any socializing was peripheral. The club also had an auction, and did field day (in 1972, I saw an ft-101 close up after seeing the ads for a year, and it rained a lot, the perioheral of a hurricane). Any socializing was because people knew each other, and came for the meeting. If I'd come in some other way, why should people be instantly friendly? Maybe it's not them that need to make the effort, but the new club members?

When I stopped going, there was no specific or dramatic reason. I became an adult, I suddenly had other interests after some years where radio/electronics was primary. This was forty years ago,vI also have no interest in seeing anyone from high school.

It's easy to say "I went to a club, and they weren't friendly" but tyat says nothing, but is a trigger for others to say the same thing. What did you hope to get out of the club? What were you willing to put into the club? (Volunteering isn't about proving yourself, but it provides for interaction, which leads to "being friends"). Maybe that club was the wrong choice because it was about sitting around and visiting. A more active club might be better. (We don't know, all we hear is that the members were surly.)

Since elsewhere comments have come up about "everyone being old" , in 1972 except for a couple of kids in the class, everyone was.older than me. I may have been the youngest ham in Canada at the time, the rules just changed so you didn't have to be 15 or older. If all you see is "old", then there won't be younger hams.

This has nothing to do with ham radio, it's about how people interact. And all kinds of vsriables are missing to know what's going on.

If the clubs don't fit you, you can always find like minded people and start your own


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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Thu 12, 2021 12:48 pm 
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J. Hill wrote:
I should have been more clear. The repeater is owned and operated by employees of the telephone company, the telephone company radio club. It is located in a telephone company building. All local hams call it the telephone company repeater. It is an open repeater. Well, usually open. There is another repeater owned by the JPL radio club, and local hams call it the JPL repeater.

Thanks for the clarification. :D

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Thu 12, 2021 1:14 pm 
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mblack wrote:
I wonder how many ham club members are out there thinking "gee, those newcomers are not very friendly"?

In 1972, how were you going to find hams without going to a ham club? Walk around until you see a big antenna, and ring the bell? I did that (well I phoned first), he wasn't helpful, though I still have the oil filled capacitors he gave me. It was a different world.

The ham club had the code and theory class. When I joined late, the fee included club membership. Going to the meetings seemed like the thing to do. But there was always some speaker, that was the focus of the meetings. Sometimes they came from out of town, Bill Dunkerly came to speak about the next ham satellite, I think Oscar 7. There was also the famous meeting in May 1978, the first public demonstration of amateur packet radio. Any socializing was peripheral. The club also had an auction, and did field day (in 1972, I saw an ft-101 close up after seeing the ads for a year, and it rained a lot, the perioheral of a hurricane). Any socializing was because people knew each other, and came for the meeting. If I'd come in some other way, why should people be instantly friendly? Maybe it's not them that need to make the effort, but the new club members?

When I stopped going, there was no specific or dramatic reason. I became an adult, I suddenly had other interests after some years where radio/electronics was primary. This was forty years ago,vI also have no interest in seeing anyone from high school.

It's easy to say "I went to a club, and they weren't friendly" but tyat says nothing, but is a trigger for others to say the same thing. What did you hope to get out of the club? What were you willing to put into the club? (Volunteering isn't about proving yourself, but it provides for interaction, which leads to "being friends"). Maybe that club was the wrong choice because it was about sitting around and visiting. A more active club might be better. (We don't know, all we hear is that the members were surly.)

Since elsewhere comments have come up about "everyone being old" , in 1972 except for a couple of kids in the class, everyone was.older than me. I may have been the youngest ham in Canada at the time, the rules just changed so you didn't have to be 15 or older. If all you see is "old", then there won't be younger hams.

This has nothing to do with ham radio, it's about how people interact. And all kinds of vsriables are missing to know what's going on.

If the clubs don't fit you, you can always find like minded people and start your own


Thanks, mblack.

I think part of it is that this is a very small town club. The members have known each other all their lives, grew up together, and are getting on in years. I am not that much younger than them, but my outlook is far less conservative, and since the club has a facebook page, my posting there allowed them to view my page, which probably made them blow an 80,000 Farad cap.

I just moved here about 5 years ago, so that adds to the mix.

Nobody here loves a city slicker.

So, they have what they have always had, they enjoy it, no one is forcing me to attend the meetings,

So I will find other venues to enjoy this hobby.

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Thu 12, 2021 6:54 pm 
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Location: Tucson, Arizona, 85704
I joined two local Amateur radio clubs a couple of years ago. One was heavy into Digital and Satellite gear, so if you were using analog equipment, you didn't seem to mix in.

At one of the morning eat meets, an older fellow had a Baofang radio that needed setup and he got blown off by one of the "Elmer's".

Second club was only interested in club dues. At one meet, I asked a technical question and the response from everyone was akin to my stepping on dog poop and tracking it in.

Eventually I had no interest in rejoining either club.

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Thu 12, 2021 11:52 pm 
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rgbiker wrote:
I joined two local Amateur radio clubs a couple of years ago. One was heavy into Digital and Satellite gear, so if you were using analog equipment, you didn't seem to mix in.

At one of the morning eat meets, an older fellow had a Baofang radio that needed setup and he got blown off by one of the "Elmer's".

Second club was only interested in club dues. At one meet, I asked a technical question and the response from everyone was akin to my stepping on dog poop and tracking it in.

Eventually I had no interest in rejoining either club.



Yes, what works for some doesn't work for everyone.

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Sat 14, 2021 4:47 pm 
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When I first became licensed in 2004 a friend invited me to attend a local ham club meeting. The group was fairly divided on friendliness. Around half of the members were more than welcoming to an 18 year old kid like me while some of the others were offend by me even being there. The meetings were usually lightly attended, maybe 10 people at most. I only attended a few times before my class schedule got in the way and I couldn't make the monthly meets. My friend and Elmer stopped going not long after that and I didn't know why until years after. He later told me that he arrived early to one of the monthly meetings and as he was walking down the hallway towards the room he overheard some of the members mention my name. So he stopped and listened for a while as these guys trashed talked myself and my friend for bringing some "new guy" into their exclusive club. he turned around and never went back. Not long after that the club has some big squabble and pretty much dissolved.

Around 15 years ago I met a few guys at a local hamfest who overheard that I liked to homebrew things and invited me to their club. It was basically a group of enthusiasts who meet once a month to have a few beers and show off their latest electronic projects. I have never met a nicer group of individuals in my life and several of the members have become some of my closest friends. The worst part of 2020 was not getting to see the group once a month but we created a Facebook group and have held a few Zoom meetings.

You never know with clubs. Some are great while others are dysfunctional and full of crabby, unpleasant people.



Dalton wrote:
Had to use Google maps to locate the picnic pavillion, about half a mile uphill on a secluded dirt road.

There were about 14 people, all male, one of them was under 60.

Most were quite friendly, one or two scowled and grunted when I said hello, their expression one of protracted gas expulsion.

The Pledge was said, the minutes were read, one new member was accepted in absentia, and that was pretty much it.

I have attended this meeting before last March, and there were only a handful more people.

Cliques in the group are encircled with a moat and razor wire.

I pay the dues because I occasionally use the repeater and join a net.

Depending on if the net control is part of a clique, I have actually been snubbed as have others when trying to check in to a net. (Talking 2 meters here.)

Some of these guys are kind of the ham radio Taliban, and some of this behavior is due to decades old grudges, and sadly some of it is due to political differences that have no place in amateur radio. I'm sure it's not like this everywhere, but it seems the RACES and other "emergency" types feel if you are not on their roster, you don't belong on the air. I question the seizing of a section of the band by a quasi government agency by declaration anyway.

The storm/emergency nets when I first got into ham radio in the 90's were open to anyone with a license. Now if you don't join the clique, they don't want to hear from you. So Joe Ham, who doesn't like or want to be involved with the members of the "agency" doesn't bother going on the air during a storm or whatever, even though he (or she) may have life saving information.

So, the reasons why the hobby (NOT a religion!) keeps shrinking are painfully obvious.

Rant over.

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Sat 14, 2021 5:07 pm 
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Well over 50 years ago, I was studying the code and other requirements---in hopes of getting the license. I finally realized that the licensed operators were just cluttering the Ether with incoherent babble. I decided to focus on getting a degree in electronics----which of course comes with its own special kind of babble

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Sat 14, 2021 5:31 pm 
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Jeremy S wrote:
You never know with clubs. Some are great while others are dysfunctional and full of crabby, unpleasant people.


That is the same with all groups. It is the same with people in general. I have gone to three different club meetings before the virus and stayed in touch with all three on their repeaters. Two are great, but one tends to be dominated by one political group who spends most of the time bad mouthing anyone who does not agree with their political opinion. When things get back to normal and live meeting are held, I intend to join the nice one that is closest to me.


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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Sat 14, 2021 8:54 pm 
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What I am about to talk about was not a club, but kind of operated like one. It was an electronics night school class at a high school. It was focused on teaching people enough electronics and Morse code to get their ham licenses.

These were all people in their 40s, 50s, and 60s. There were mechanics, cement plant owner, lawyer, retired post master, title searcher, and just about everyone you could imagine in that class.

One of the guys was a body shop manager. As he was learning the Morse code he was taking what he learned home and teaching it to his 12 year old kid.

At some point he told the teacher what he was doing. Even though it was officially an adult night school the teacher said, "Bring him along to class." Everyone just treated him like anyone else in class. He would read the code he copied and sent code in class just like everyone did.

The 12 year old and his father both got their licenses. Eventually that 12 year old had that instructor as one of his teachers in high school. The instructor later recommended the kid for a job in a TV shop. He got the job while going to high school and earned the money that put him through college.

That 12 year old kid was me. 57 years later and a retired engineer with Motorola and General Dynamics. The father was my dad and the instructor was W6MOU, Nelson Witte.

Curtis Eickerman

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Sat 14, 2021 10:09 pm 
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Curtis, I attended an adult night school ham radio class when I was maybe old enough to officially attend. The instructor was a wonderful man who taught me a lot about ham radio, electronics and life. I will never forget him. He has passed on now, but his name was Ken Johnson W6FU. A few years ago, I sent him a note in the mail. He told me that he gets together with a bunch of hams at a certain restaurant at a certain time each week and invited me to join them. Well, I was always going to do that but just never did until it was too late. Next thing I heard was that he passed away. I never really thanked him.


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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Sun 15, 2021 12:58 am 
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J. Hill wrote:
I never really thanked him.
I firmly believe he knew.

Curtis Eickerman

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Sun 15, 2021 1:33 am 
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is there some sort of national group that these state or local clubs belong to? might be of help to contact them for club choices?

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 Post subject: Re: So I went to the local ham club meeting
PostPosted: Aug Sun 15, 2021 1:43 am 
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Thank you Curtis I hope you are right.


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