Tag Archives: QRZ.com

EZNEC Antenna Modeling for All of Us

I missed this while it was happening. I was looking to update my old software to model my new antenna configurations and found out about the change.

As Roy W7EL decided to retire, he made public his EZNEC antenna modeling software (compiled form only).


There is also some neat stuff on NEC-5 end, where there is a collaborative update to the latest version (NEC5 X11) thanks to some great ham inputs! https://eznec.com/NEC-5.htm

The AC6LA add-on AutoEZ is something I plan to check out. https://eznec.com/AutoEZ.htm and https://ac6la.com/

AutoEZ is interesting as it an an Add-On to EZNEC which in also in essence an Add-On to NEC.  AutoEZ appears Excel-based, EZNEC is Visual Basic 6 (obsolete version) with some Fortran modules,  and the core NEC compiled Fortran (Intel Visual Fortran with the mkl math libraries).

Below the “–” line I will include some background from either Roy W7EL (website archived copy or QRZ.com) or a QSO Today Podcast interview he did with Eric 4Z1UG.

Well worth checking out all of these programs.

Also a series of dedicated books by ON5AU that should be considered if you are going to put EZNEC to work:



GL and 73


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The Awesome QSL Drawings of Jeff K1NSS Heading to Print

K9ZW New QSL Card Proofs

Jeff K1NSS is a QSL card artist that you may enjoy checking out part of his portfolio at: https://www.jeffk1nss.com/

He had done designs for me back in 2015, most which never ended up being printed for a variety of reasons including moving and a need my end to be more focused on health.

I asked Jeff K1NSS to update the 2015 designs, and to create several new designs. All the updates are done and two of the three new designs are finished.

After reviewing several QSL printing services (I had previously had quotes from local printers) I’ve select QSL Concepts to print the first six cards. They are at: http://qslconcept.com/usa/

QSL Concepts “Fab” VE7FBN got it right away that I had ready to print front/back artwork. While Canadian based QSL Concepts uses a USA based affiliate for cards being delivered stateside.

I was able to tag the cards into a pricing program focused on clubs, and anticipate the new cards arriving about ten business days down the road (might be sooner!).

This batch of card designs includes:

  • A retro boat-anchor voice card
  • Two new designs based on a concept I have to accommodate my FlexRadio operating conditions, one in B&W and one in color
  • A digital mode card
  • A Washington Island QTH card emphasizing my operations from George W9EVT’s monster-shack
  • A Washington Island card intended for guests at the W9EVT monster-shack which I will give to George W9EVT

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Radio Amateur’s Forums – Some Good Ones, then some Havens for Trolls and Uneven Moderators

First rule of ham forums (or any other internet forums): “The consensus of the uninformed does not give birth to an informed opinion.” Period.

A forum can be a place of sharing, but only if the participants can & will bring information useful to share to that forum.

  • A whole series of “I don’t know” forum posts doesn’t create knowledge.
  • A whole series of negative to outright-troll posts never create a positive result.

The first – the uninformed – only repeat the question, and the second – the forum troll – only gives voice to a bad spirit.

So how to find quality information in forums?

Look for forums that have these characteristics:

  • Fully Identified users – no Darko13 or other handles. Either by call sign or by full name every participant should be identified.
  • Fully Identified moderators – ditto on the forum staff. If the mods hide behind handles there is a reason.
  • Encouragement of both newbies and professionals– if the forum welcomes the new and goes out of its way to get opinions & posts from the expert, it is likely a better class of neighborhood.
  • Strict “No Troll” and etiquette policies – a good forum shuts down trolls and has a heavy hand when it comes to personal respect issues.
  • Big Tent rather than inner clique feel – some otherwise reasonable forums have been spoiled by inner clique issues, where the inner circle is held in higher esteem than other forum members.
  • Minimal “Secret Rooms” – many forums have forum sections that are available only to certain classes of members. Sometimes you have to pay up, sometimes it is for volunteers, some private sections are for commercial reasons. These should be transparent and acknowledged.
  • Moderation on the Monetization of the Forum – watch out for those that exist only to get advertising      “clicks” or are only about making money for the forum owner.

In the amateur radio world there are not that many large forums – QRZ.com and eHam come to mind the quickest.

QRZ.com is pretty open about what it is, and tends towards a newsflash/tweet type of posting. Announcements and ads seem to figure highly. QRZ does have a neat “Activity” feed-like page http://forums.qrz.com/activity.php which adds some utility. The main QRZ Forum link is http://forums.qrz.com/forum.php

eHam is the amateur radio troll’s favorite, with many forum sections all but run by soured negative trolls. Moderation is all but absent and when it does occur uneven, summary, unexplained and anonymous. eHam has moderated my posts without explanation, reason or reply, completely erased hams from their posts, articles and reviews if they ask the eHam staff what is going on, and the staff never replies if you write them. eHam is about selling ad clicks, and if letting trolls pick fights with other amateurs gets more clicks – well that seems a-ok to eHam. If you want a look Google for eHam as I can’t recommend them by direct link.

Here is an example of the eHam Troll-Fest – I keep them all ignored, so perhaps they are lavishing praise on my post, but rather doubt it…. Notice how in minutes they gather, slather and lurk….  Trolls:

Example eHam Troll Fest

Example eHam Troll Fest


Then the ranks thin out dramatically. Perhaps a half-dozen open forums of various quality are the next tier. None are significant resources.

The next tier, where you will find some quality forums, are the focus group forums. These are ones run by individuals, manufacturers, clubs and groups that have a specific point of interest – say ownership of an XYZ radio, or a shared interest in doing ABC radio operations, or other shared radio interest. Many are also hosted at Yahoo Groups.

The wild west free for all of the UseNet IRC style forums is still out there, though it has been years since I spent any time wading in the flotsam and jetsam of UseNet. Too much noise to too little signal.

Many of may wonder why forum at all, and perhaps that is where blogs like this come into play as a viable alternative?




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QRZ.com releases an Android QRZ Look-Up App

The good folk at QRZ.com ( http://www.qrz.com ) have released an Android Application that does QRZ.com database call-sign look-ups.

Link is:


I’ve tried it and it works nicely, but be forewarned the Application is financed by showing Ads.

Wouldn’t be bad if they were Amateur Radio ads like the QRZ.com site has, as they are complete rubbish ads pulled from the Google Ad pool.

The announcement and discussion thread at QRZ.com is at: http://forums.qrz.com/showthread.php?t=343952



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Washington Island’s Ham Radio Treasure – W9EVT Featured at QRZ.COM

Our friend George W9EVT written up by Fred AA7BQ owner of QRZ.com:

Washington Island’s Ham Radio Treasure

This week we had the rare opportunity to visit the ham shack of George Ulm, W9EVT, and were treated to an experience that may well be unique in all of amateur radio.

via Washington Island’s Ham Radio Treasure.

We’re hoping George’s dream of his collection becoming the core of an amateur radio museum can happen.



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