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You are listening to ZS6SRL, the official radio station of the South African Radio League, the national body for amateur radio in South Africa, with a news bulletin every Sunday at 08:15 CAT in Afrikaans and at 08:30 CAT in English. To listen to a web stream, visit, click on 'ARMI' and follow the links for details. PLEASE NOTE: for audio via Echolink, connect to ZS0JPL-R.

You can download this bulletin and previous ones from and also subscribe to receive future bulletins by e-mail.
Your newsreader this morning is (name), (call sign), on 145,725 and 7,066 MHz from Pretoria, with relays on 7,066 and 3,695 MHz SSB.


It is with regret that it has to be announced that the keys of two radio amateurs became silent. They are:

James Timoney, ZS1TK, of Cape Town Amateur Radio Centre, at the age of 91.

The second one is Johan Du Plooy, ZS6AYO, at the age of 84, who leaves his wife, Joey.

Our sincere condolences go to the relatives and friends of the deceased.


In the news today:





You are listening to ZS6SRL. Stay tuned for more details on these and other important and interesting news items.


The SARL presents a President's Net this evening starting at 19:30 CAT on repeaters in various areas. Clubs wishing to link their repeaters to the teleconference bridge should send their landline number to before noon today (Sunday). It will also be available on Echolink and on 3 718 kHz.


The radio regulations were published on 31 March and came into effect on 1 April 2011. Unfortunately, a number of mistakes have crept in, which ICASA is already working on to rectify as soon as possible.

The regulation for a ZU license is incorrect; the word "under" was left out in front of the 20 years. The situation is as follows: anyone can write the class B examination. There is no age restriction, but if you are over 20 years of age you cannot apply for a class B license, also known as a ZU license. If you have a class B qualification you will be able to keep a ZU license until you reach 25, when the license falls away.

The position of current ZU license holders has not been finalised. ICASA is likely to allow a two-year grace period for persons over 25 with a class B qualification to upgrade their class B certificate to a class A and apply for a class A license. To upgrade means having to write the class A examination.

Candidates over 20 years of age who have registered for the class B examination may still write, but should note that they will not be able to apply for any Amateur Radio license. The SARL recommends that you change your registration to Class A or request that your registration is postponed till the October examination to allow you more time to study.

In line with common practice, the Regulation Syllabus for the May examination remains unchanged, since it is already midterm. Candidates will thus be examined on the regulations in force when they started their studies earlier this year. The examination papers have already been completed. In the October examination candidates will be examined on the new regulations and any amendments that may be published soon.

If you are currently a ZR, you now have the same privileges as a ZS license holder. The upgrade process falls away. The new table of amateur radio frequency allocation is incorrect. Both ZR and ZS should follow the frequencies and power limits marked as A1. ZR license holders do not have to change their callsign.


There is still confusion about the allocation of amateur frequencies. While the ITU agrees on frequency allocations at the World Radio Conference, these allocations are only recommendations to national regulators.

In South Africa, frequency allocation is a function of the Table of Frequency Allocations which is developed by ICASA and published in the Government Gazette. ICASA is under no obligation to automatically incorporate what the ITU may decide.

It is ICASA's job to regulate the spectrum in the best interest of all South Africans. The expansion of the 40 metre amateur band by 100 kHz to 7 200 kHz is a good example. The ITU recommended that it should happen by a certain date. Thanks to the SARL’s intervention with ICASA, a separate regulation change was published in the Government Gazette to effectively implement the 40 metre band expansion in South Africa.

If the SARL had not done this, the expansion would have only happened with the publication of the next Table of Frequency allocation, two years later. Moreover, even if the expansion appears in the Table of Frequency Allocation, it still requires a change of the regulations. That would have only happened this year.

The ITU recommends, and ICASA implements. That is why the SARL meets regularly with ICASA to ensure that amateur radio is looked after. Amateur radio is a very small part of what ICASA does. The SARL believes that we are privileged that senior ICASA officials support amateur radio and work with us to support the continued development of amateur radio in South Africa.


Mike Bosch, ZS2FM, reports that on 29 March 2011 Pieter, V51PJ, of Rosh Pinah and Andre, ZS2ACP, of Port Elizabeth established the first-ever digital contact between Namibia and South Africa over a distance of 1 086 km. This was followed by another FSK441 contact between V51PJ and Paul, ZS6NK, of Polokwane, which is a new 70 MHz SARL digital record of 1 346 km. Congratulations to the three of you for your pioneering efforts.

FSK441 uses Frequency Shift Keying at a baud rate of 441 Hz. Four distinct tones are used, namely 882, 1 323, 1 764, and 2 205 Hz. Each encoded character uses three tone intervals and therefore requires 3/441 seconds (approximately 2,3 ms) for its transmission. FSK441 accommodates a potential "alphabet" of 48 characters. The present encoding scheme uses 43 of these characters.


There are only 20 places left on the boat trip down Millionaire's Mile on the Vaal. Start the 2011 SARL National Convention in style on 15 April. Book now to avoid disappointment! See the Vaal and enjoy a delicious dinner on the Liquid Lounge and stand the chance to win a dual-band VHF/UHF handheld transceiver donated by Kobus, ZS1K, of Lets Play Radio. The draw will be held during the cruise. Book now. It is expected that the twenty seats to be snapped up quickly. Full details and how to book are available on or follow the link from It could just be your lucky night to walk away with the dual-band radio.


The membership of the SARL has jumped to 1 527 as we welcome yet more new members to the SARL. We wish the following newbies a long and beneficial association:

Dirk van Vuuren – ZSL1009
Louis Bredenhann – ZSL1010
Norman Esterhuizen – ZSL1011
Neil Ritson – ZSL1012
Andrew van Heerden – ZSL1013
Jeffrey Grusd – ZS6IRQ


The first leg of the SARL 80 m QSO Party will be on the air on Thursday 7 April, from 17:00 to 20:00 UTC, with phone activity between 3 603 to 3 650 and 3 700 to 3 800 kHz.

The exchange is your call sign, RS signal report and operator’s name. You score 10 points for every contact with a South African station and 15 points for every contact with a station outside South Africa. Logs must be submitted by 14 April to the Durban ARC, 17 Brownlee Place, Bluff, Durban, 4052, or by e-mail to


Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity is at moderate levels. Currently Sunspots 1 176, 1 180 and 1 183 are doing their part to make HF operators happy with some very nice DX openings during the past week. The effective sunspot number is expected to be around 75 for the coming week.

15 m will provide the best opportunities for DX followed by 20 m. With the higher sunspot activity, 10 m will open first followed by the lower bands later during the day. Conditions to India will be good from the afternoon till after sunset. During the late afternoons conditions will be good towards Europe. Fair contacts with the USA are possible during the evening. Contacts with Australia are possible on 20 m after sunset. Openings to Brazil and South America are possible during the afternoons. With the good 15 and 20 m openings, 17 m and 12 m will also be full of surprises.

For the CW and digital enthusiasts 30 m may be very rewarding with openings to many parts of the world.

Locally 40 m is the workhorse for contacts around the country with 20 and 30m also being very useful for contacts over the longer distances. 80 m will be best during the early mornings and late afternoons as well as over the shorter distances.

80 m is the frequency of choice during the evenings.

Please visit for further information.


3 April – Tonight the President’s Net at 19:30 CAT.
7 April – SARL 80 m QSO Party, 17:0 to 20:0 UTC.
15-16 April – SARL National Convention at Vaal University for Technology.
7 May – RTA in Cape Town.
18 June – Programming in Windows course in Gauteng. Book at

SARL News invites clubs and individuals to submit news items of interest to radio amateurs and shortwave listeners. Submit news items – if possible – in both English and Afrikaans to, not later than the Thursday preceding the bulletin date.

The SARL also invites you to listen to Amateur Radio Today every Sunday morning at 10:00 CAT on 145,750 MHz in the Pretoria area, with relays on 7 082, 7 205 and 17 750 kHz. There is also a podcast by ZS6RO. For a web-stream and Echolink by ZS6FCS, visit, click on 'ARMI' and follow the links. A repeat transmission can be heard on Mondays at 18:30 CAT on 3 230 kHz. Sentech sponsors the ARMI transmissions on the non-amateur frequencies.

You have listened to a bulletin of the South African Radio League, compiled by Hester van der Walt and checked by George, ZS6NE.

Thank you for listening, 73.

Copyright © 1997- 2006  South African Radio League
Last modified: 14 April 2003