Amateur Radio Workshop HF Antennas

Testing, Workshop

By: Mark Gibson (N4MQU)

Wendell, NC Five County Ham Radio Enthusiasts (FCHRE) is pleased to announce it’s first amateur radio workshop topic and speaker.  The topic will be HF antennas by Curt Phillips (W4CP). The workshop will take place on August 7, 2021 at 1:00 PM. The location will be Wendell United Methodist Church, 129 N Main St, Wendell, NC 27591

Curt Phillips has been a licensed amateur radio operator since he was 13 years old, over 50 years now.  He has written on radio, electronics and engineering topics for numerous national publications, and has taught radio, electronics and energy engineering topics at NC State and Virginia Tech among other universities, as well for several local community colleges.  He is a Life member of the American Radio Relay League.

Amateur radio exams will be given following the workshop at 2:30. All applicants must have a FRN issued by the FCC or a call sign and a valid email address.  There is no charge for the exam. Walk-ins will be accepted but registration is preferred.  Please register at

For background

FCHRE was recently recognized by the largest amateur radio fraternity in the United States the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) North Carolina section manager for their superior efforts involved in organizing Volunteer Examination Sessions during the COVID 19 Pandemic.

From the Federal Communication Commissions website

The amateur and amateur-satellite services are for qualified persons of any age who are interested in radio technique solely with a personal aim and without pecuniary interest. These services present an opportunity for self-training, intercommunication, and technical investigations. Twenty-nine small frequency bands throughout the spectrum are allocated to this service internationally. Some 1,300 digital, analog, pulse, and spread-spectrum emission types may be transmitted.

Our regular dinner gatherings are held on the fourth Thursday of every month at Mclean’s in Zebolon starting at 6:00 PM.  

Image Description:  A rod supporting one end of a HF antenna.  The antenna was used at a special event station celebrating 80+ years of the Virginia Fone Net. 


Being A CERT Volunteer

Amateur Radio, CERT

By Mark Gibson (N4MQU)

Third quarter moon at 3:30 AM

As an amateur radio operator we are able to serve our community using our amateur radio communication skills during emergencies or reporting changing weather conditions to Skywarn.  As a person with basic Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training you will get CERT Volunteer recruitment notices. I saw one the other day that sparked an interest in volunteering for it.  It said Could you be a decoy for a TSA K-9?  I thought that was interesting so I signed up for the first date available. The day came so I woke up at 3:30 AM and followed the directions to the airport they gave me and called my handler when I arrived at 4:30 in the morning.  I am not at liberty to tell you what I did exactly but I pretended to be a passenger going through the screening process.  They hid something on my person and had me go through the line.  I think I went through the line four times and the dogs discovered me each time.  I was handcuffed and pulled out of the line.  (Not really the handcuffs I made up) I was pulled out of the line.  You do have to wake up early for this activity but I had a lot of fun. I encourage you to get your basic CERT training and look for other than amateur radio opportunities you may wish to volunteer for.  I made sure the handler knew I was a member of JARS CERT.

One of the K9 dogs