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SARL News Bulletin Archive


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Good morning and welcome. You are tuned to a bulletin of the South African Radio League read by __________________________ (Name and call sign) from _____________________ (QTH). You can tune in to our newscasts on Sunday mornings at 08:15 CAT in Afrikaans and at 08:30 CAT in English on HF and many VHF and UHF repeaters around the country. Echolink listeners can connect to ZS0JPL for an audio stream. A podcast is also available from the South African Ra-dio League webpage at Also join us for Amateur Radio Today on Sundays at 10:00 CAT.

You will find this bulletin and previous bulletins in text format on the League web page under the News link on the left-hand side. While you are there, you can sign up to receive future bulletins by e-mail.

We start this news bulletin with news of a silent key.

It is with regret that we note the passing of Issy Kotzen, ZS6JK, from Potchefstroom at the age of 91 years. He was an amateur for 67 years and was one of the founders of the Potchefstroom Radio Club, which later became known as the Western Trans-vaal Branch of the South African Radio League.

We extend our sincere condolences to his family and friends.


In the News today






The leading story this week

** The South African Radio League will be holding an Intecnet on Tuesday 22 July at 19:30 to brief the South African Radio League delegates to the IARU Region 1 General Conference in Bulgaria in September, on how to vote on the various conference documents. The conference documents can be downloaded from

The three delegates representing the South African Radio League, Geoff Levy ZS6C, Rassie Erasmus, ZS1YT, and Riaan Greeff, ZS4PR will discuss the various papers on administration and finances, HF, VHF/UHF and microwave matters.

** Due to a clash with the Sandton Amateur Radio Club AGM, the date for the SARL@Home event will move one week on and will now be held on Saturday 2 Au-gust 2014 at 09:30 CAT. Geoff, ZS6C, will talk about contesting and contesting log-ging software. He will demonstrate the software and if you bring along a memory stick, you will be able to go home with the software. There is no charge for SARL members but you have to book so that we know how many to cater for. For non-members, the charge is R100. Please use the booking form available on the South African Radio League web site or call Vonnie on 011 675 2393 to confirm your at-tendance. Refreshments will be served.

** The South African Radio League HF Phone Contest starts the CQ Southern Africa series of contests in August. The HF Phone contest will be held on Sunday 3 August from 13:00 to 16:30 UTC with activity on 20, 40 and 80 metres. The exchange is a RS report and a consecutive serial number starting at 001. Participation can be as a Single Operator Single Band; Single Operator All Band; Multi Operator Single Band or a Multi Operator All Band station. Phone contacts count 1 point, count two points for each call area on each band and count 2 points for each station contacted on all three bands. There will be a lucky draw for an ARRL Antenna book valued at over R900. To enter the lucky draw, a participant must submit a log with a minimum of 15 contacts. Get the complete rules in the SARL Contest Manual.

** The next SARL Youth net is on 3 August at 15:00. The net will operate on 7 070 kHz. Clubs are invited to activate their club station and facilitate young people to join the net. The objective is for the net to bring young people together. If you are not in the youth category please give the young people a chance by not joining the net but by just listening.

The winner of the photographic competition is Tyler Stegmann, ZU6TS, 11 years old. He was operating from the 1st Polokwane Scout Group Hall, ZR6PS. Tyler will receive a Velleman edukit which contain a soldering iron, cutters, solder and two projects. The kit valued at R395 was sponsored by Electronics FG, of Faerie Glen, Pretoria.

** On Thursday afternoon 17 July, Rickus, ZS4A, manning ZS4DCC, reported via the HAMNET monitor net on 7 110 kHz that Van Reenen's pass had to be temporarily closed due to extremely strong winds reaching up to 141 km/h. The call was answered by Dawie, ZR6DHC, in Rustenburg just after 16:00 and within minutes the information was posted on the SARL HAMNET Facebook page as well as relayed via Twitter.

In the mean time contact had been established with Lloyd ZS6MO/mobile via the 145.650 MHz Harrismith repeater who managed to supply the net with situation re-ports in almost real time. A short while later, news was received that the pass had been opened for light traffic but trucks and busses with high sides weren't allowed to travel on the pass.

This is just another example and motivation for local amateurs to monitor the 7 110 kHz emergency frequency during daylight hours as conditions can change within minutes. For those with access to Facebook and Twitter it is highly recommended that you join the SARL HAMNET groups on the different platforms in order to stay updated with current conditions.

** Derek Hileard, G4CQM, describes the conditions across the Atlantic Ocean: "The Atlantic separates the two continents, North America and Europe. It is an inhospita-ble place with cold air and water coming down from the Arctic. Due to this, propaga-tion possibilities are very limited in the direction of North America, unlike the warm ocean paths from Europe to the south and southwest. Over the decades numerous Amateur Radio sorties have been mounted to effect a two way contact and win the Brendan Trophy, regrettably without success! However, there have been several one way reception reports providing an element of teasing." Visit Derek's website at to see more.

On 6 July 2014, John Regnault, G4SWX, at Woodbridge in Suffolk, picked up several short meteor bursts on FSK441 that decoded two CQs and a single call sign of VC1T. The day before, Terry Gabriel, M0VRL, at Delabole in Cornwall, saw traces of a JT65 signal in and out of the noise but could not decode the call sign.

There are two bigger challenges awaiting VHF amateurs on 144 MHz, they are the 6 000 km sea path across the Atlantic between South Africa and Brazil and the cross-ing of the Indian Ocean between South Africa and Australia, a distance of 8 000 km, but in both cases tropospheric ducting could provide the breakthrough!

** The International Lighthouse and Lightship weekend takes place on 16 and 17 August and it is not a contest, but a fun activity to contact lighthouses worldwide and encourage the preservation of these structures. At present twelve South African lighthouses are registered at for the Lighthouse weekend.

South Africa has fifty lighthouses along its coast. Twenty-six of these have ILLW numbers with two lighthouses sharing the same number. Four lighthouses have been decommissioned and four lighthouses are on islands of which three are on the Islands on the Air list. Read HF Happenings 615 next week to get all the details.

You are listening to a bulletin of the South African Radio League and now we look at contesting news and news from the Clubs.

** IARU HF Championships. Geoff, ZS6C, reports that he did not get many amateurs volunteering their services over the weekend of 12 and 13 July. The ZS9HQ team was Vidi, ZS1EL, Roger, ZS6RJ, Neil, ZS6/VA7DX, Joop, ZS6JP, Theunis, ZS2EC, and Geoff, ZS6C. The 2014 contest was a lot better than the previous years. At the end of the 24 hours, ZS9HQ worked a total of 1 929 contacts. Geoff says thank you to those amateurs who gave up their time to operate ZS9HQ.

** The results of the SARL Top Band Contest held from the 19 - 23 June are as fol-lows. Three logs and one check log was received, which was very disappointing.

1st Johan van Zijl, ZS4DZ
2nd Lukas Holtzhauzen, ZS6LH
3rd Hendrik Odendaal, ZS6DO
Congratulations to Johan

** The RSGB’s Island on the Air contest will be on the air over the weekend of 26 and 27 July with phone and CW activity on 80 to 10 metres (excluding the WARC bands). Find the rules of the RSGB website.

** The South African Radio League YL Sprint is a fun activity to celebrate National Women’s Day on 9 August. The Sprint runs from 09:00 to 10:00 UTC and it is a phone sprint on the 40-metre band. The exchange is a RS report and YL or OM.

** Is your club's repeater/beacon information up to date? The South African Radio League is currently updating the information on the repeater/beacon database on the League’s web page. Quite a number of the repeaters/beacons listed are no longer active. Some repeaters/ beacons also have outdated information that needs to be updated. If you are the custodian of a repeater/beacon/digipeater please visit and update the information. This will assist the South African Radio League in supplying users with up-to-date information on the location and frequency of repeaters and beacons.

** The ZS6PTA Winter Mega Flea market will be held from 08:00 to 11:00 on Satur-day 26 July 2014 at the Pretoria Motor Club in Silverton. Everyone is welcome to at-tend. For more information or to book a table, please contact Almero, ZS6LDP, on 083 938 8955.

** The West Rand Amateur Radio Club held their 58th AGM on 12 July 2014 and the following members have been elected to the committee for 2014/2015.

Chairman - Nick Dreyer, ZS6NCK
Vice Chairman - Johan van Vuuren
Secretary - Noel Hammond, ZR6DX
Treasurer - Hugh Wason, ZS6WAS
Members - John Brock, ZS6WL, Phillip van Tonder, ZS6PVT, Nic van Duffelen, ZR6AEZ, Geoff Levey, ZS6C, Willem Weideman, ZS6X, Dave Cloete, ZR6AOC, Marinus Brand, ZS6BM, and Keith Liddle ZS6AGF

** The Centurion Radio Amateur Club held its AGM on Saturday 12 July and the following members were elected to the committee:

Chairman and Treasurer - Pam Momberg, ZS6APT
Vice Chairman - Gawie Basson, ZS6GJJ
Secretary - Billy Strumpher, ZS6WPS
Technical - Johan Keulder, ZS6CAQ
Social - Gert Viljoen, ZR6BV

We thank the previous committees for jobs well done and wish the new committees all the best for their term.

** Application for membership of the SARL has been received from the following persons:
- Rigardt Johann van der Spuy, ZSL 1026
- Johann-Arnmand Erasmus, ZSL 1013
Any objections against the acceptance of these applications must reach the Secre-tary before or on the Tuesday after this bulletin. At this stage almost 1 000 members have already renewed their membership.


Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity has sharply declined. There is only one numbered sunspot on the Earth facing side of the sun. If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around 25.

The three DX bands from 20 to 15 m will provide some DX fun with 20 m providing the best openings with 15 m not far behind.

Please visit the website for further information.


Tuesday 22 July at 19:30 CAT, the SARL Intechnet
26 August - the ZS6PTA Mega Flea market and the Sandton ARC AGM
26 and 27 July – the RSGB IOTA Contest
2 August - the SARL@Home at the NARC
3 August at 15:00 CAT, the SARL HF Phone Contest; also the SARL Youth Net
9 August – the SARL YL Sprint
16 and 17 August – The International Lighthouse and Lightship weekend
17 August – the SARL HF Digital Contest

You can get more information on these and other happenings on the South African Radio League website at

We end this week’s news with a look back at our top story

The South African Radio League will be holding an Intecnet on Tuesday 22 July at 19:30 to brief the South African Radio League delegates to the IARU Region 1 Gen-eral Conference in Bulgaria in September, on how to vote on the various conference documents. The conference documents can be downloaded from Join us on Tuesday evening at 19:30 on a repeater near you.

That brings us to the end of this week’s news broadcast

The South African Radio League invites you to listen to Amateur Radio Today every Sunday morning at 10:00 local time on 145,750 MHz in the Pretoria area, and on the 145,650 network in Johannesburg with relays on 7 082, 7 205, and 17 660 kHz. There is a podcast by Dick, ZS6RO. For web-streaming and Echolink by Chris, ZS6FCS, visit, click on 'Amateur Radio Today', go down the green column and click on 'LISTEN ON THE WEB'.

A repeat transmission can be heard on Mondays at 16:30 UTC on 3 230 kHz. The website also lists various other retransmissions. Reception reports, comments and suggestions are invited. Send an email to Sentech sponsors the transmissions on the non-amateur frequencies.

South African Radio League News invites clubs and individuals to submit news items of interest to radio amateurs and short-wave listeners. Submit news items, if possible in both English and Afrikaans, to, no later than the Thursday preceding the bulletin date.

You have listened to a bulletin of the South African Radio League compiled by Dennis Green, ZS4BS.

Thank you for listening.


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Last modified: 14 April 2003