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SARL Today HF Update with ZS4BS VHF/UHF News with Mike Bosch ZS2FM Contest News with Geoff ZS6C SARL Forum current topics Commercial Hamads


LIGHTNING SCATTER ON 50 MHz – Lightning Scatter is another VHF propagation mode, but two-way contacts have never been tried in South Africa. Many years ago a FM broadcasting station in Durban on the 108 MHz FM band was heard in East London by ZS2FM during a lightning storm. Everytime a lightning flash occurred, from a distant thunderstorm in the direction of Durban, the FM signal would pop out of the noise at full limiting and last for about ten seconds before it faded out. Read more here.


.AMSATSA/SARL SDR Workshop well attended - The AMSATSA/SARL SDR Workshop was well attended with 42 persons filling the SARL Lecture room to the full. The workshop covered both the HF and VHF SDR dongles and the many modes of operation possible, such as SSTV, Weather satellites, satellite telemetry amongst others.  The SDR  topics were presented by Anton Jovanovsky ZS6AIC while Hans van de Groenendaal ZS6AKV introduced the SARL HF noisefloor monitoring project.

History was also made when Leon Lessing ZS6LMG   demonstrated for the first time version 3 of the Kletskous, AMSATSA CubeSat transponder. Watch a short video here


SARLNEWS: AMATEUR RADIO TODAY - listen to these programmes on line or download to retransmit on local nets, a SARL service to Radio Amateurs. 

Sunday 20 August  2017

SARLNUUS  met John Keulder ZS6BXL  luister/laai hieraf 

SARLNEWS  with Dave Reece ZS1DFR download/listen here 

AMATEUR RADIO TODAY with Hans van de Groenendaal  listen here or visit the Amateur Radio Today page with more details and download links  here   

REPEATER EVENT AT NARC 26 AUGUST 2017 - The SA Digital Repeater Sub-Committee (SADRS) is running an event at the National Amateur Radio Centre from 10:00 to 17:00 CAT on Saturday 26 August 2017. This is a free event for SARL members. Kits will be available for purchase. The programme is as follows:

10:00 Welcome and talk about the BrandMeister DMR, D-Star and the Fusion Master Server by Andy Coetzee, ZS5CEY 

11:00 Tea Break 

11:15 The MMDVM Homebrew Building Project by Johan Lehmann, ZS6JPL, and Ronald Verweerdt, ZS6RVC

12:15 Lunch - Steak rolls and refreshments

13:30 The MMDVM Hotpots projects and Different Digital Radios - Tytera MD2017 DMR Dual band Radio, etc., by Marinus Brand, ZS6BM, and Andy Coetzee, ZS5CEY

15:00 Practical MMDVM Demonstration and Building. 

 17:00 End of the event. 

IARUMS: Eritrea and Ethiopia still in 40 m amateur radio band - The IARU Region 1 Monitoring System newsletter reports Radio Eritrea and Radio Ethiopia are still operating in the 40 m band on 7 150 and 7 175 kHz. The International Amateur Radio Union Monitoring System (IARUMS) Region 1 July 2017 newsletter can be read at

Reports of Amateur Band intruders can be logged on the IARU Region 1 Monitoring System Logger at

Monitor the short-wave bands on-line with a web based SDR receiver at

REPORT BACK ON SARL/SARL LIAISON MEETING -  The SARL-ICASA Liaison Committee met on 7 July. To read the summary report click here 

JOTA/JOTI 2017 - Richard Hooper, ZS6RKE, the National JOTA/JOTI Coordinator for SCOUTS South Africa told SARL News that JOTA/JOTI 2017 is being held from 20 to 22 October. JOTA/JOTI 2016 was a very successful event nationwide, with a 400% growth in Amateur Radio stations and I would like to see this get better with each year.

Below is the latest link with information on hosting an event. Registration has not yet opened for this year, but is expected in the next week or two. I will send out further details once registration opens for the year. Visit

Please let me know if you have any queries or would like some assistance arranging Radio Amateurs for your event. I will endeavour to assist where possible. You can contact me at


 Advertising in Radio ZS and the SARL Web site - Radio ZS and the SARL web welcomes advertising. It is a source of information for readers. To place an advertisement in Radio ZS, contact Dennis, ZS4BS, at To advertise on the League web site, contact Hans, ZS6AKV at

Advertising Rates

Display (cameo) on home page - R500 pm - R2 500 for 6 months - R4 500 per annum

Commercial Hamad on home page - R60 pm - R300 for 6 months - R500 per annum

Radio ZS Strip advertisement, 10 cm x 2 columns on top of the page - R100 pm - R500 for 6 months - R1 000 per annum

Display (cameo) on home page and Radio ZS Strip advertisement (as above)       - R550 pm - R2 700 for 6 months - R4 900 per annum 

Terms and conditions

All contract advertisements content may be changed monthly on 5 working day notice

The rates are based on the complete supply of material in Jpeg unless otherwise negotiated. For artwork additional charges may apply as agreed

The content of the advertisements must comply with regulations and norms acceptable in South Africa

All advertisements are playable in advance by EFT to SA Radio League, ABSA, account no 4071 588 849 branch code 632 005

All correspondence and material must be sent to with a copy to

HF Update with Dennis,ZS4BS 19 August 2017 

Get your weekly copy of HF Happenings at

The Australian Travellers Net. To provide safety for radio amateurs travelling long distances often in remote areas, or being marine mobile, is the Travellers Net on air 365 days of the year. Anyone can also send a telephone message to the travellers or inquire about their whereabouts.


A team of operators run the Travellers Net on 14,116 MHz with a check-in at 02:00 UTC and for 21,185 MHz it is 04:00 UTC. Priority is always given to urgent traffic. Sometimes the use of relay stations is necessary for those not heard by a net controller. Each controller was recognised by a WIA Presidents Commendation at the WIA AGM held in May 2017.

The full net information URL is

Pirates. "For more than a year now an Amateur Radio operator has been pirating the following calls on CW", The Daily DX reported on 17 August. "It started off with VU2TS, but only on CW. Then he was switching between VU2TS and 4U1ITU, when the club was using 4U1WRC, again CW only.  Next, he began using 5H3PM, CW only.  The pirate has now recently switched over to 5H3MG again, CW only.  I have confirmed with Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) that both 5H3 calls are not currently registered calls. The signals are clearly coming from Southern Europe".

Mellish Reef, VK9M. The VK9MA DXpedition's team now includes nine operators (DL3DXX, LB8DC, N7QT, N9ADG, SM1ALH, SM5AQD, SM5GLC, W5XU and WJ2O). They will be active from Mellish Reef (OC-072) between 3 and 16 November, with four stations around the clock. "One of our goals is to dedicate a lot of station time to the digital modes, particularly RTTY", they say. "If conditions are such that the band(s) are not open for RTTY, we most likely will give JT65/JT9 and FT8 a try". The lower bands (160 to 30 m) are expected to “provide the best opportunity to work the world during the evening hours", while 17 and 20 metres will be "the most likely bands to work the world during the day". The pilot stations will be K4PI (all the Americas), V51B (Africa) and ON9CFG (Europe).  QSL via Club Log's OQRS (preferred), LoTW and eQSL; traditional requests via N7QT. The website for the DXpedition is at

Taiwan, BV. Special callsign BV0FISU will be in use between 18 and 30 August for the XXIX Summer Universiade (the World University Games organized by the International University Sports Federation) to be held in Taipei. QSL via BV2FP, bureau preferred.

South Cook Islands, E5. Doug, W6HB, will once again be active as E51DLD from Rarotonga Island (OC-013) between 27 August and 8 September. Activity will be on 160 to 10 metres using SSB. Doug states, "I will be with XYL Ana this trip and will be playing more the tourist. Expect some operating vacation style from E51AND's and E51KC's QTH - I expect visiting and possibly some operations from E51JD's and E51BQ." QSL via his home callsign. See for more details. No LoTW, no eQSL, no logs - hard cards ONLY folks.

French Polynesia, FO. Heinz, DF1YP, will once again be active as FO/DF1YP from Moorea Island (OC-046) between 6 September and 1 October. Activity will be holiday style on 20, 17 and 15 metres using SSB and the Digital modes. QSL via his home call sign, direct or by the Bureau (preferred).

VHF+ UHF+ MICROWAVE NEWS by Mike Bosch ZS2FM 20 August 2017 


LIGHTNING SCATTER ON 50 MHz – Lightning Scatter is another VHF propagation mode, but two-way contacts have never been tried in South Africa. Many years ago a FM broadcasting station in Durban on the 108 MHz FM band was heard in East London by ZS2FM during a lightning storm. Everytime a lightning flash occurred, from a distant thunderstorm in the direction of Durban, the FM signal would pop out of the noise at full limiting and last for about ten seconds before it faded out. Recently radio bursts from lightning on 144,300 MHz SSB, emanating from ZS6CBQ at Krugersdorp, were picked up by ZS4A in Bethlehem, even though  they were of very short duration the voice of ZS6CBQ was recognizable. This suggests that brief two-way contacts on 50 MHz should be possible on SSB, FM or Digital during a thunderstorm where longer bursts may occur. 

The late afternoon thunderstorms, normally experienced in the summer months around Johannesburg, could be a wonderful testing ground for a lightning project. Of course, only distant stations surrounding Johannesburg area would be able to participate, as all antennas will be grounded in the area where the storm is raging. If you are in Pretoria then beam at the storm in Johannesburg area and give a brief call during a lightning flash, while only listening during the next flash. If you can’t see the lightning flash then call when you hear the static burst on receive. In theory it should be possible to make contacts as far south as Bloemfontein. Who will be the first to a make a contact via Lighting Scatter on 50 MHz?  


TROPO PROPAGATION IS POOR ALONG SOUTH EAST COAST AT PRESENT –“Hi, Dave ZS5DJ is back on the radio, and I called him last night, Monday 14th. No contact was made. No other stations were heard as conditions are not good along the S.E. coast.73 Peter ZS2ABF.” 

“Peter I heard you on Monday evening but you did not copy me. I also sent CW but I think you switched off by then. Never copied any other station. Dave ZS5DJ.” 

“Carl ZS6CBQ, the distance is about 325 km from Ramsgate to East London, but
conditions were not good on Monday. We make contact most times unless conditions are really bad. Dave ZS5DJ.”

Peter’s Station: 8 el Yagi 8 metres agl and 240 Watts.

Dave’s station: 14 el Yagi 13 metres agl and 140 Watts.

Carl’s station: 10 el OWL Yagi (G0KSC design) at about 12 metres using 200 Watts with an IC-910 and pre-amp. Also a 9 el LFA at 14 metres with IC-275 180 Watts amplifier and pre-amp.

“Dave it appears that your QSO's depend mostly on Tropo Ducting along the coast. Unfortunately inland we are not lucky to have much help from the weather, especially in the winter. Our Vhf/UHF group is on the air every Saturday and Sunday morning and we found that the morning conditions are better than in the evenings. I have regular contacts with the guys in Bloemfontein over a distance of about 370 km. But most of the time I use Aircraft Scatter. In the summer contacts to Kimberley, Louis Trichardt and Phalaborwa are made over distances of about 420 km. I also have regular contacts with ZS4WW and ZS4PF in Welkom every morning at 06:00 CAT and evenings at 20:00 CAT over a distance of 220 km. We are still waiting to work Div 5 stations, but so far it does not seem that there are stations within our reach. Keep up the good work on VHF. Regards Carl ZS6CBQ.”

THE NJIT HAM RADIO CLUB WILL STUDY THE SOLAR ECLIPSE ON 21 AUGUST 2017 – Nathaniel Frissell, an assistant research professor of physics at NJIT's Centre for Solar Terrestrial Research at Newark, New Jersey, USA, and a sophisticated practitioner of ham radio who is intent on elevating the technology's role in space science research. He founded the Ham Radio Science Citizen Investigation (HamSCI), an organization that connects professional researchers such as space physicists and astronomers with the amateur radio community.


With a 102 ft. wire antenna, he will contact a network of ham radio operators he's assembled around the world to test the strength and reach of their high frequency signals as one measure of the eclipse's impact on Earth's atmosphere. More than a week in advance, nearly 200 operators - from New Jersey, to Tennessee, to Wyoming in the U.S. and at far-flung locales such as Chile, Greece and India - are already signed on to be "citizen-scientists" that day by recording their contacts with one another. 

By merging their data, the different groups will be able to construct a comprehensive picture of atmospheric effects caused by space weather events ranging from the solar eclipse later this month to more common phenomena, such as solar flares. In 2014, he first demonstrated the use of ham radio data by showing the effects of an X-class solar flare on high frequency communications. He will share data and analysis from the day at the American Geophysical Union annual meeting in December.

CONTEST NEWS WITH ZS6C Updated 10 July 2017 

Worked All Europe DX Contest: The Deutscher Amateur Radio Club (DARC) invites radio amateurs world wide to participate in the annual WAE DX Contest. Times: CW: Saturday, August 12, 2017, 0000 UTC until Sunday, August 13, 2017, 2359 UTC – Bands: 3.5 - 7 - 14 - 21 - 28 MHz. No operation to take place on:  3560-3800; 7040-7200; 14060-14350 kHz .

South African Radio League Digital Contest: Aim- The aim of the HF Contests is for participants to contact as many amateurs in Southern Africa as possible on the 20, 40 and 80 m amateur bands.        Dates:  13:00 to 16:30 UTC on Sunday 20 August 2017 – Frequencies: 3 580 to 3 600 kHz, 7 040 to 7 060 kHz, 14 070 to 14 099 kHz. See Blue Book for details

SCC RTTY Championship:  OBJECTIVE: For amateur radio stations around the world to contact as many other amateur radio stations as possible on HF bands using RTTY Baudot mode. CONTEST PERIOD: last full weekend in August, from 12.00 UTC Saturday to 11.59 UTC Sunday (24 hours); in 2017 (26 - 27 August). BANDS: All amateur bands from 3.5 through 28 MHz, except WARC bands (80/40/20/15/10m).

YO DX HF Contest: Objectives: All the radio amateurs around the world are invited to make as many possible contacts with YO amateurs and other amateurs from different DXCC countries. Contest Period:  August 26 12:00:00 – August 27, 11:59:59 UTC. Bands and Modes: From 80m to 10m, except the WARC bands, in the band segments corresponding to the selected mode (CW and SSB). The same station can be worked once in CW and once in SSB, in the appropriate band segments according to the IARU band plan. 

SARL HF CW Contest: Aim: The aim of the HF Contests is for participants to contact as many amateurs in Southern Africa as possible on the 20, 40 and 80 m amateur bands. Dates:  13:00 to 16:30 UTC on Sunday 27 August 2017. Frequencies: 14 000 to 14 060 kHz, 7 000 to 7 040 kHz, 3 510 to 3 560 kHz. See Blue Book for details

SARL Forum Active Topics
Dennis ZS1AU's wife Joan sadly SK 
 1  2
20/08/2017  18:42:44
by: ZS1ADC
random generator  20/08/2017  14:51:59
by: ZS6BV
International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend  20/08/2017  12:40:58
by: ZS6BTY
VP8VHF Beacon  20/08/2017  10:29:21
by: ZS1C
144.300 SSB Sked 
 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18  19  20
   21  22  23  24  25  26  27  28  29  30  31  32  33  34  35  36  37
20/08/2017  09:39:59
by: ZS2ABF
IOTA Activation of Robben Island 
 1  2  3
20/08/2017  05:35:58
by: ZS6UT
7090 Emergency  19/08/2017  11:57:10
by: ZR1PJA

Commercial Hamads 


Direct importer of a wide selection of SWR meters, H.F., V.H.F. and U.H.F. base and mobile antennas. Amateur radio transceivers, antenna analyzers, etc. Affordable shipping costs for out of town customers and subsidized shipping to SARL members. Check out all my amateur radio goodies here. 0720268909.


Light Engineering Works

General engineering, part remanufacturing  turning, milling, drilling.Specialised welding of steel, stainless steel, aluminium and cast iron.Gear repair and remanufacturing.Prototype industrial and automotive  parts and brackets made to specification,  Heavy duty antenna support and Mobile brackets including standoff brackets and antenna parts manufactured.Tower and tower part repairs also undertaken. Contact Willie Wright ZS6WC.0823351356.


Place your commercial hamads on the home page.  Book a six months space for R300 or 12 months at R500 prepaid with order   The advertisements will be  text only up to 60 words including address, telephone number and click through URL to advertisers' website and email address. Adverisement can be changed  Send your contact details to and we will contact you or call the NARC at 011 675 2393

What is Amateur Radio ? 

Tell me more  about Amateur Radio

Radio Amateurs, or "Hams" use two-way radio communication to make contact with other radio amateurs all over the world. They are even able to use satellites and on occasion speak with astronauts. Radio Hams can do this from home or while mobile in cars, boats or on foot.

Radio Hams have a full range or communication modes at their disposal. These include plain voice, Morse code, numerous digital computer modes and even graphical modes like television. As a licensed amateur radio operator you will be able to join in experiments using all these modes.

mateur radio can be enjoyed by young and old, male and female, even the most severely disabled can make friends around the world from their own home. This hobby knows no boundaries.

Random Photo from the Call book.

 Unknown Callsign, ZS6ZSB


Conical Technologies

 Click here to go to the Kevtronics web 

Sam's Radio 


Call us on us 082-974-8248 or 84-585-8563 

RF Design


CDS Advert 


 Click here to visit website 

Worked All ZS award
An interesting operating goal

The entry level for the WAZS award is 100 different call signs. The programme has recently been expanded to include higher level endorsements, such as WAZS-200, WAZS-300, etc. Endorsements may also be obtained for specific modes, eg: CW, SSB, etc.
Click here for more information...

lboat034a.gif (1979 bytes)SA Maritime Net

The South African Maritime Mobile Net provides weather reports and maintains contact with sailing vessels from around the coast and high seas.
The net operates 7 days a week.

There are two regular schedule times as follows:

  • 06:30 UTC and 11:30 UTC on 14 316 kHz high seas net.
  • 06:35 UTC and 11:35 UTC on 7 120 kHz coastal net - the net lasts approximately 30 minutes .


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This page last modified: 27/7/2017