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SARL News Bulletin Archive


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Good morning and welcome to the weekly news bulletin of the South African Radio League read by ………………………………………… [your name, call sign and QTH]

You can tune in to the South African Radio League news bulletin on Sunday mornings at 08:15 Central African Time in Afrikaans and at 08:30 Central African Time in English on HF and on many VHF and UHF repeaters around the country. Echolink listeners can connect to ZS0JPL for a relay. A podcast is available from the League’s web site.

This audio bulletin can be downloaded from the League’s website at You will find this bulletin and previous bulletins in text format under the news link on the left-hand side of the web page. While you are there, you can sign up to receive future bulletins by e-mail.

We start this bulletin with news of a silent key:

From the Hamnet Bulletin we have learnt of the passing of Anton de Beer, ZS6AG, of Middelburg in Mpumulanga last weekend. Though battling chronic ill health, his passing was very unexpected.

We extend our sincere condolences to his relatives and friends.


In the news today





Stay tuned for more on these and other interesting news items.

** On Saturday 30 January the South African Radio League will have various activities at the National Amateur Radio Centre under the banner of SARL@home. The five young people representing the South African Radio League and South Africa at YOTA 2016, which will be held in Austria in July, will meet at the NARC.

The Gauteng Hammies will meet to kick off the course for the class B Radio Amateur examination. There will also be a discussion on the SARL 5 MHz propagation research project and the move of the beacons to a new frequency in the IARU agreed worldwide 5 MHz allocation.

A selection of ARRL books will be available for sale. Regrettably, no credit cards can be accepted. Join us for a chat over a cup of coffee or tea from 10:00 until 13:00.

** The January 2016 issue of Radio ZS is available for download from the League’s web site. In this issue Heather, ZS6YE, tells us about a ZS5 Field Day station and shares the YL Beam newsletter with us. Eddie, ZS6BNE, shares his best RaDAR moment of 2015 and Kevin, ZS6KMD, explains how to build a simple arduino frequency counter. Brian, ZS6BV, tells us about his ultralight portable HF station, while Chip, K7JA helps us get ready for Field Day. Mike, ZS2FM, says field stations are the spice of VHF and UHF contests and Patrick, VE3RGW, gives you plans to build a two element Yagi for field day operation. And there is more in this 48 page issue.

The theme for the February issue is VHF/UHF and above, the closing date for your article is Monday 25 January, and you can send it to The theme for the March issue is emergency communications and in April, we will look at home brewing.

** This is the first call for papers for the annual SA AMSAT Space Symposium to be held at the Innovation Hub in Pretoria on Saturday 28 May 2016. A brief synopsis for a proposed paper should be sent to by 31 March 2016. The theme of the conference is “Make Space Sciences your leisure time.”

** Sponsors rally to support the Kletskous CubeSat. SA AMSAT has announced that three major companies have come on board by sponsoring their services and components to build the first flight model. TRAX in Cape Town will be manufacturing the specialised printed circuit boards and RS Components and Avnet Kop will be supplying specialised components. "We are delighted to have these companies again on board this year,” Hannes Coetzee, Project Manager for the SA AMSAT CubeSat told SARL News. "We are making good progress and plan to show off our achievements at the SA AMSAT Space Symposium on 28 May in Pretoria".

** The 2016 South African Radio League National Convention. The Sasolburg Amateur Radio Club will be hosting the League’s National Convention over the weekend of 22 to 24 April 2016, a week later than originally published. More details will be announced soon. Make a note of the date in your dairy now.

You are listening to a news bulletin of the South African Radio League.

** Membership of the South African Radio League currently stands at 1 614 members and 43 affiliated clubs

** The PEARS National VHF and UHF Contest is now in full swing and will end this afternoon at 14:00 CAT. You still have time to make some long distance contacts, just keep a sharp eye on the calling frequencies of 50,200 MHz and 144,200 MHz SSB, or try CW one kHz higher in frequency, or the digital modes on 50,250 - 50,300 MHz and 144,250 - 144,300 MHz.

** Willem de Kock, ZS1WDK, of Brackenfell, Cape Town, reported that he has been monitoring the V51PJ beacon on 50,300 MHz for the past 2 weeks and could copy it every single day. Although mostly very weak, there were times that it was copied at S5. Early this morning (10 January), the beacon was copied at S7 for about 15 seconds before disappearing into the noise again. He gave a few calls using a five element Yagi and 150 Watts in a north westerly direction but nothing.... The beacon can still be heard just rising out of the noise about every 10 seconds during QSB and only lasting about 5 seconds and seems like it is sitting right on the threshold of a solid opening.

** The Summer QRP contest runs from 12:00 to 15:00 UTC on Saturday 23 January 2016 using SSB and CW with 5 watts (PEP) output or less. There are no antenna restrictions and a station may be worked only once per band per mode. The first hour is limited to the 40 m band only, the remaining two hours the contesters are free to use any HF (non-WARC) band as they see fit. The exchange is a RS or RST report and your grid locator and each contact counts 1 point.

Each South African call area 0 to 9 counts as a multiplier and each DXCC country worked counts as a multiplier. The station type multiplier is x 1 - for home stations; x 2 - for portable stations and x 3 - for ultra light portable field stations. Logs, in ADIF, Cabrillo or MS Excel format and labelled “your call sign QRP Contest,” must be submitted by 31 January 2016 by e-mail to A photo(s) of the station operating, in JPG format, must accompany every log entry.

** Do not miss out on ARRL Books. The SA Amateur Radio Development Trust online bookstore has a limited number of books available imported before the Rand lost so much of its value to the US Dollar. Currently the ARRL 2016 Handbook sells at close to the 2015 handbook price. Order while current stocks last. For a list and price of books in stock visit

** Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity is expected to be at low levels. None of the currently visible sunspots poses a threat for serious flaring. If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around 36.

The 20 to 15 m bands will provide lots DX fun, with some 10 m openings also possible. Please visit the website for further information.

Now for the diary of events

23 January – Summer QRP Contest
25 January – closing date for your VHF/UHF article for the February Radio ZS
30 January – SARL@Home at the NARC
31 January – The closing date for nominations for Council and the submission of motions for the AGM
31 January – closing date for the summer QRP logs
13 and 14 February – the SARL National Field Day
15 February – closing date for the PEARS VHF/UHF logs
22 to 24 April – the 2016 SARL National Convention in Sasolburg

To end this bulletin, a recap of our main news item this morning.

On Saturday 30 January the South African Radio League will have various activities at the National Amateur Radio Centre under the banner of SARL@home. The five young people representing the South African Radio League and South Africa at YOTA 2016, which will be held in Austria in July, will meet at the NARC.

** Clubs and individuals are invited to submit news items of interest to radio amateurs and shortwave listeners, if possible, in both English and Afrikaans, by following the news inbox link on the South African Radio League web page. News items for inclusion in the bulletin should reach the news team no later than the Thursday preceding the bulletin date.

You are welcome to join us every Sunday morning for the weekly amateur radio magazine programme ‘Amateur Radio Today’ at 10:00 Central African Time. The programme can be heard on VHF and UHF repeaters countrywide and on 7 082 kHz lower side-band and on 7 205 kHz and 17 760 kHz AM. There is also a podcast available from Dick Stratford, ZS6RO. A rebroadcast can be heard on Monday evenings at 18:30 Central African Time on 3 230 kHz AM.

We welcome your signal reports, comments and suggestions; send these by e-mail to Sentech sponsors the radio transmissions on the non-amateur frequencies.

You have listened to a news bulletin compiled by Dennis Green, ZS4BS, edited by Dave Reece, ZS1DFR, and read by ……………..…………………

73 and 88, thank you for listening


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Last modified: 14 April 2003