KAØAZS

Winlink Nets

Winlink is a digital mode used primarily as a store and forward messaging system. A station connects via RF to a VHF or HF node known as a Radio Message Server (RMS) Gateway. The RMS gateway forwards that message to one of two redundant Common Message Servers (CMS) via internet. When a receiving station connects to the system, the CMS sends the message to the RMS that the receiving station is logged in to. There are also Hybrid gateways that will relay messages when the internet is down.

This gives a valuable capability when internet is down in a local area, allowing stations to connect to HF gateways outside of the impacted area.

Winlink operates much as an E-mail program and has many standardized forms such as used by the Red Cross and Incident Command System (ICS) forms used by FEMA and local EMAs.

In addition to VHF and HF connections, there is a Telnet option that connects using the internet, providing an opportunity to learn the program prior to integrating it with your radio.

The Red Cross has incorporated Winlink into national exercises such as the one held on 8 May 2021.  See the ARC-EmComm Training group for details on upcoming drills and their Winlink Thursdays training program.

Two local Winlink nets are:

Greene County ARES Winlink net:

  • Send a Winlink message to W8LRJ via w8lrj@winlink.org either using the Winlink gateway at 445.01 MHz simplex, HF or via Winlink Telnet any time on Tuesday between 6 am and 9 pm. All messages will be acknowledged.
  • Net, please use the following format: Callsign, Name, City, County, ARES District, State, and How Connected (Frequency and Callsign of Winlink Gateway or Telnet). As an example, that would be W8LRJ, John Westerkamp, Beavercreek, Greene, D3, OH (via 445.01 W8GCA-10 Gateway)”
  • Please feel free to check-in using one of the Winlink Form Templates, e.g., the Winlink Check-In form under General or the ICS 213 form under ICS Forms.
  • Remember that a Winlink Net is NOT like a conventional net where all participants meet simultaneously. All messages will be acknowledged on Wednesday.

Ohio Winlink Net:

  • Send a Winlink message to K8EAF any time on Wednesday.
  • Just a one line with callsign, first name, city, county, state and via what mode (VHF, UHF, HF or Telnet. Because we want operators to get started using Winlink, the Telnet check-ins are excepted.
  • Enter K8EAF in the “To” field. Subject field “OH Winlink Net Check-in”. In the body field enter callsign, first name, city, county, state and via what mode.
  • Example: K8EAF, Ed, Cincinnati, Hamilton, OH (VHF)
  • All check-ins will be acknowledged, and a complete roster will be sent later in the week.
  • NOTE: They will accept the ICS213 forms and the new Winlink Check-in form found in the General Forms folder. Test drive the forms!

Additional Nets:

Great Lakes Area Winlink Net: Wednesdays, send a message to KB8RCR with the subject of “GLAWN Date of Check-in” (example: GLAWN 3/10/2021), with your information in the body (FIRST NAME, CALLSIGN, CITY, COUNTY, STATE, COUNTRY).  You can also use any of the standard Winlink forms or templates.

In addition, there is the Original Winlink Wednesday Net with net controls in Virginia.  Check out their website and read the All About Winlink Wednesday document (.pdf file) for more details.  In addition to checking in via VHF/UHF and HF RMS nodes (no TELNET please), they also hold HF Peer to Peer (P2P) sessions.

Going a bit further out of the region there is a North Texas Winlink Net

On Thursdays, our neighbors have their own nets:

Kentucky Winlink Net focusing on P2P connections.  See details here.

 West Virginia Winlink Net, using standard RMS messages and P2P connections.

Digital Training Nets

Various District 3 counties hold weekly Digital nets. These provide valuable training on using digital modes to pass traffic during an activation. They use sound card digital modes and the free FLDIGI software package.

FLDIGI is used in a keyboard to keyboard mode, either with two stations passing traffic to each other or for net operations with multiple stations. The companion FLMSG software allows use of standardized forms (such as American Red Cross of Incident Command System) to be passed.

Greene County:

  • Greene County ARES holds their digital net following their weekly voice nets on Tuesday evenings. The voice net begins at 21:00L.
  • It is held on the 146.910(-) W8GCA repeater on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Tuesday.
  • It is held on the 442.7250(+) W8GCA repeater on the 4th Tuesday.
  • The net uses the MT63 2000 Long (MT63-2KL) digital mode centered on 1500 Hz.

Montgomery County:

  • Montgomery Co. ARES holds their digital net following their weekly voice nets on Tuesday evenings. The voice net begins at 20:00L.
  • The first and third Tuesday of the month is on the 146.640(-) 123.0HZ tone K8MCA Repeater.
  • The second Tuesday of the month is held on the 444.250 (+) 123.0Hz tone K8MCA repeater.
  • (The fourth Tuesday is usually reserved for meetings, but during the COVID19 response a net on 146.640 is being held instead).
  • The net uses the MT63 2000 Long (MT63-2KL) digital mode centered on 1500 Hz.

If any other District 3 counties are holding Digital nets, please pass the information to ka0azs@arrl.net for posting here.

May 2020 Winlink Test Results

From the June 2020 ARES E-Letter, comments of Ohio SEC Stan Broadway, N8BHL:

Stan Broadway, N8BHL, Ohio Section Emergency Coordinator, reported “We did well for the Red Cross exercise on May 30; we had more Winlink activity than expected. So we need to increase the penetration and use of Winlink along with/as a part of the Ohio Digital Emergency Network (OHDEN), which principally supports the Ohio state EOC, and our traffic nets.”

Ron Moorefield, W8ILC SK

Ron was the District 3 DEC for many years

Per the DARA RF Carrier:

March 18, 2020

With all that is going on lately, it is with sadness that I must inform the club that Ron Moorefield, W8ILC, passed away earlier today. Due to the corona virus, the family has postponed the memorial services and will make an announcement later.  Please keep his family in your prayers as we get through this unusual and difficult time.

73 de K8UD
Steve Coy

Continue reading…

New DEC: Don Parker KB8PSL

As the newly appointed West Central Ohio ARES Emergency Coordinator for District 3, I want to thank Fred Stone for his assistance as I transition into this new position. It goes without saying; Fred’s guidance leading District 3 has benefited the organization moving it forward.

I want to introduce myself and provide some background. Many of you know me as a Dayton SkyWarn Coordinator assisting with the NWS/SkyWarn weather spotter classes, Hamvention Security Chairman, Montgomery County ARES – AEC Logistics/PIO, or Montgomery County EMA EMCOMM team leader/EOC staff.

I have over 40 years experience in Public Safety involved with a variety of emergency incidents, disasters, planning drill exercises, and instructing public safety courses.

Over the past years, I’ve been a first responder to the major emergency incidents in the Miami Valley region. I’ve been to the Xenia tornadoes 1974 and 2000, Miamisburg train phosphorous incident, blizzard of 1978, and many other incidents.

As an EMCOMM member, in 2019, I worked the water emergency, KKK rally, Tornado outbreak, and the mass shooting with the EMCOMM team/EOC staff members at the Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management.

I have years of experience organizing and participating in public service events as a net control operator for area ham clubs and organizations. I’ve been a ham radio operator for 27 years, I enjoy the hobby including being a Volunteer Examiner and experiencing the excitement of students receiving their Technician ham radio license or moving up to the next level.

My years of experience involved in the many aspects of ham radio communications, disasters, planning, and executing drills made my decision to apply for the District Emergency Coordinator.

I’m looking forward to working with everyone and moving ARES into the future. It takes the cooperation of team work to move forward.

Don Parker KB8PSL
District Emergency Coordinator
West Central Ohio District 3 ARES

D3 Net Callsign KD3WCO

Beginning with the 15 January 2020 net, the Net Control Operator for the weekly District 3 ARES net will be using the callsign of KD3WCO (K-District 3 West Central Ohio).

New District 3 ARES Net Manager Appointed

I am pleased to announce the appointment of John Massie, WX8JDM, as the new Net Manager (NM) for the West Central Ohio District 3 ARES Weekly Net, effective today 15 March 2019.  John serves in the regular rotation of Net Control Operators (NCO) and spent a number of hour as one of the several NCO’s during the District 3 Snow Net Saturday/ Sunday 19/20 January.

I also want to recognize and express thanks and appreciation to retiring co-Net Managers Keith Burnette, KB8GYB, and Randy Allen, KAØAZS, for their respective many years of service to and support of the D3 Weekly Net.  They have expressed desire to be replaced for some time now and we finally are able to accomplish that for them.

The current Net procedures and guidelines will be maintained for the present time but the D3 EC’s and I are considering future changes to make the weekly net more interesting, efficient and effective.  I welcome and encourage Net Control Operators, Net participants and ARES personnel within the nine District 3 counties to email me any ideas and suggestions you may have for accomplishing these goals.  We also need your regular participation in the weekly Net as often as you can make it!

A “purpose and mission statement” for the D3 ARES Weekly Net and a “Position Description for D3 ARES Net Manager” will be published/distributed soon and also posted on the D3 ARES website—which Randy will continue to maintain as webmaster.

My “door” always is open so don’t hesitate to email me any time with any questions, idea and suggestions.  Thank you for your continuing participation in and support for West Central Ohio District 3 ARES.

73,

Fred Stone W8LLY

District Emergency Coordinator

West Central Ohio District 3 ARES

ARRL Emergency Communications Course EC-001 course is back

From Ohio ARES Section Emergency Coordinator Stan Broadway, N8BHL:

Gang, the enclosed news release has the details, but the short version is twofold: the EC-001 course is back on a new hosting system. It appears to be the same course as before.  The good news is in part two: the course is free.

If you have volunteers new to ARES  this is a good basic course for readiness and expectation.  Feel free to pass on this information to your members!

Here is the official release:

EC-001 Launch 2019

ARRL’s Lifelong Learning Department is excited to announce the launch of the recently revised Introduction to Emergency Communications (EC-001) course. As part of this new initiative, the course has been updated, beta-tested by a group of course mentors, and transferred into a new online learning platform.

With the closing of the Connecticut Distance Learning Consortium (CTDLC) in mid-2018, EC-001 lost its virtual home and was taken offline. At that point ARRL’s Emergency Preparedness staff started working with the new Lifelong Learning team to explore short and long-term alternatives for offering the course. After a period of careful evaluation and review, the decision was made to move the course from the previous Moodle platform to a more modern Learning Management System called Canvas, which will be used while the new Lifelong Learning Initiative program is being developed. The EC-001 course will eventually become part of this new, comprehensive online learning environment.

EC-001 is designed to provide basic knowledge and tools for any emergency communications volunteer. We hope this course will be the starting point for you in your service to your community as radio amateurs and inspire you to think outside the box and look at new and useful ways the radio amateur can lend a hand to the public that has given us the trust of our spectrum of skills. With the online format, students can access the course at any time from anywhere during a 9-week period, so you may work according to your own schedule.

“We’re very excited to be able to offer Introduction to Emergency Communications EC-001 once again” states Kris Bickell, ARRL Lifelong Learning Manager. “The Emergency Preparedness staff at ARRL has been incredibly helpful while we’ve worked together to get the course back up and running. And the input from previous EC-001 mentors has been an invaluable part of the testing phase. The timing is right to put the course back online.”

As in the past, students will be able to register and take the course entirely online. The Canvas platform is also mobile-responsive, meaning that students can view the course materials, interact with fellow students, and complete assignments from any mobile device.

Each course will run for nine (9) weeks, with a group of up to 30 students who will be supported by an experienced mentor. There will be no cost for the course, although students must meet certain pre-requisites to be eligible to participate, which are listed on the registration page.

To view the 2019 course schedule and to register:

http://www.arrl.org/online-course-registration