Friday, January 16, 2015

CBS Will Air Stamp Collecting Segment

Exciting news – for the first time in its 36-year history, CBS Sunday Morning will air a segment on stamp collecting!  The show is scheduled to run on Sunday, January 18th, at 9 a.m. Eastern Standard Time.  As a collector, you may want to watch.
Correspondent Rita Braver interviewed several leading members of our hobby, including Ken Martin of the APS, organizers of World Stamp Show-NY 2016, Bill Gross and outgoing Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe.  In addition to visiting the National Postal Museum’s William H. Gross Gallery, Braver and her film crew also attended a Collector’s Club Youth Stamp Club meeting.  According to reports, vintage background footage showing stamps will be part of the segment, too.
It will be fun to see collecting in the news.  Plus I feel a personal connection to the story.  As you recall, Mystic owned the 1¢ Z Grill and traded it with Bill Gross for the Jenny Invert Plate Number Block.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Governor Snyder signs Senate Bill 493. now PA 556

With just one day left, Governor Snyder signed Senate Bill 493, 
essentially a Michigan PRB-1

The announcement is here:,4668,7-277-57577_57657-345450--,00.html

Scroll down a ways to see SB 493

Note, PA 556 has not been loaded up to the state website yet:

A HUGE thank you to all who wrote and emailed their support.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

PRB-1 Last Minute Call to Action

Senate Bill 0493 was presented to Governor Snyder at 10:08 AM on January
2, 2015. He has until 10:08 AM on January 16 to sign it in order for it
to become law.

As of this writing (8:00 PM) on January 12, 2015 our bill (along with
many others) has not been signed by the Governor. We are down to the
final days and we need your help.

This call to action is for those Michigan amateurs and other interested
parties that HAVE NOT yet contacted the Governor’s via email or the
Governor’s website to make that contact. If you have already
expressed your opinion by web site and telephone, thank you. You have
done your job.

Duplicate requests by the same medium do not help our cause. Each of us
can use each method once.

If you have called on the telephone, but not sent a request via the
website, by all means use the website medium and vice-versa. Be sure
that you have made contact by both mediums.

Michigan family members and friends of voting age, ham or non-ham can

Our message is simple: “I respectfully encourage Governor Snyder to
sign Senate Bill 493.” There is no need to add anything to the
message as additional information gets in the way of what we want to
get across at this point.

This message needs to be sent via email at: 

This web site will take you a form to be filled out. Easy to do and
painless. No need to compose your comments. For the bill category, use
"Other/Unknown" and simply insert the provided verbiage.

By telephone at 517-335-7858, simply tell the person answering the
phone (or leave a message if calling after hours) “this is (your
name) and I am a resident of (your city, town, village, or township)
and I respectfully encourage Governor Snyder to sign Senate Bill

After contacting the Governor's Office, please send a note to and advising us that you made contact
with them. 

We are very hopeful that this will accomplish our goal and get our bill
signed into law.  

Thank you for your assistance and I look forward to giving you good
news in the coming days.


Larry, WB8R

ARRL Michigan Section
Section Manager: Larry Camp, WB8R

Michigan: Contact Governor Snyder Now and Urge Him to Sign SB 789 into Law

It is imperative that you contact Governor Rick Snyder (R) today and urge him to sign Senate Bill 789 into law. Anti-gun organizations are attempting to use their money and influence to force Governor Snyder to veto this important pro-gun legislation.  It is important that you contact Governor Snyder and respectfully urge him to stand up for your Second Amendment rights and sign SB 789 before Friday, January 16th.

Senate Bill 789, which passed the legislature by significant margins, seeks to create a more efficient and uniform concealed pistol licensing process for all Michiganders. The NRA, along with other pro-Second Amendment organizations and numerous law-enforcement officials, support the signing of SB 789.

Last year, SB 789 proceeded through the legislative process without serious opposition. The bill was posted for public consumption. Hearings were held to allow for public testimony. Stakeholder concerns were voiced and their opinions were addressed. Now, only after the bill has passed the legislature and is sitting on the Governor’s desk, groups that were given nearly a year to publicly voice their concerns are attacking this legislation based on misinformation about its content.

Over the past two weeks, numerous media outlets and anti-gun organizations have attacked SB 789 based on a false assertion that the bill requires concealed pistol licenses to be issued to persons subject to personal protection orders for domestic violence or stalking. This statement and belief, whether genuine or manufactured, grossly misrepresents the contents of the bill and current Michigan law regarding personal protection orders. Simply put, if an individual is a domestic-abuser and has been charged or convicted as such, or a judge has made a determination that the individual should not be allowed to purchase or possess a firearm, that person will be prohibited from receiving a concealed pistol license under SB 789. No exceptions.

Furthermore, these anti-gun organizations are purposely omitting the fact that SB 789 was written to provide enhanced protections for victims of domestic violence. Under the proposed law, an individual who petitions the court system for a personal protection order automatically qualifies for a temporary, emergency concealed pistol license. The NRA advocated for this provision and supports it based on the belief that victims of these heinous acts should be able to avail themselves of all legally available methods to ensure their personal safety and the safety of threatened family members. 

We hope that you will join the NRA in supporting SB 789. Please contact Governor Snyder and respectfully urge him to sign SB 789 into law. Let him know that the opinions of out-of-state, anti-gun elitists are not welcome, nor are they appreciated in Michigan.

Governor Rick Snyder

Monday, November 3, 2014


This is an important UPDATE 

As this PRB-1 drama unfolds with the Michigan House of Representatives,
we find ourselves reacting to breaking news. This happens as a result
of the House currently not being in session. Nothing is official and
everything is speculative. 

As you will remember, we just started a letter writing campaign which
targeted the members of the Committee that we were told would be
handling our bill. Things change and it now appears that we will deal
with different committee.

Don’t think that all of those letters that we sent to the first
committee members were sent in vain. Nothing could be further from the
truth. Each of those representatives are now aware of our bill and
aware that there are a lot of amateur radio operators that have an
interest in having SB 0493 pass out of committee and out of the House
itself. No wasted letters here.

It is time to shift gears. 

Please go to our PRB-1 website at

Click on the ‘Sample Letters’ tab and click on ‘House of
Representatives’ and enter your information to locate your
representative’s website. Back on the Sample Letters tab, scroll down
to Sample House Letter. Copy the letter and paste it into your
Representative’s email form. 

Be sure to add the Representative’s information as well as your
information at the end of the letter to personalize the document.
Sometimes it is easier to copy the letter from our website and paste it
into a word processor to get it prepared and then paste into the
Representative’s email form.

Once again, please send a copy of what you send to and

Thank you for all of your efforts and with your help we can accomplish
this important task.


Saturday, November 1, 2014

False FEMA Alert Message


AT&T has confirmed that it accidentally relayed an incorrect emergency alert message from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to its U-verse customers in parts of Georgia, Texas, Tennessee, Michigan and Mississippi.

The alert messages began popping up on screens around 10 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time on October 24th. Red banners appeared the television screens of viewers in the affected areas alerting them to stand by for an important message.  

Soon after the incident FEMA spokesperson Rafael Lemaitre stated that there had been an inappropriate playing of the national emergency alert notification tones on a syndicated radio broadcast. He went on to state that there is not a national emergency but that the broadcast triggered alert notification in states where it had been played. Lemaitre said his agency was working with the FCC to quantify the scale of the incident.

Source (TechTimes)

MORSE EXPRESS; New Products & News

I received this informadabale e-mail this morning from 


News from Milestone Technologies, Inc
(Morse Express, Oak Hills Research, and AMECO)
October 31, 2014


-  Professional Analog Multimeter (VOM)

-  Morse Express 2014 Christmas Key

- Inventory Notes and  Odds & Ends

Professional Analog Multimeter (VOM)

Analog multimeters tend to be either very cheap, amost disposable units
that are just accurate enough to check an electrical outlet or battery
voltage, or very expensive lab-quality instruments that are more than
most people need.  Now, finally, there is an alternative    Elenco Model
M1250 provides professional quality features and reliability at a
reasonable price. One of the most notable features is the 20,000
Ohms/Volt input isolation.  There are some things that digital multimeters
just can't do, and, and there are a LOT of things that are easier to see on
an analog VOM. M1250 23 Range VOM $26.50 at

Morse Express 2014 Christmas Key

Our 2014 Christmas Key is on schedule for delivery at the end of
November.  As always, if you have the 2013 key then the same serial
number is reserved for you in 2014.  If you missed out on the 2013 key
please note that we do have some of them left, even a few matching pairs
of 2012-2013 keys.

Print advertizing this year will be in QST, in the January issue (which
ARRL members will receive before Christmas). And we will send out
another newsletter at the end of November when we can open up the
ordering system.  For a sneak peak, go to   A few 2013 and earlier keys are still
available at:

Inventory Notes, and Odds & Ends

Our friend and colleague Neil Hecht at Almost All digital electronics  is
recovering from a serious illness and is not accepting orders until further
notice.  We have limited stocks at
Please join us in wishing Neil a speedy and complete recovery.

The following Nye Viking Speed-X keys are in stock:

Other key inventories are in good shape, with almost all Palm Radio,
GHD,  Hi-Mound and Scheunemann models in stock:

All of the Oak Hills Research kits and accessories are available at, and we have good stocks of the AMECO products
including the preamplifiers and the code practice ocillators, at

Our web site has been undergoing some emergency maintenance over the
last two weeks but I'm told everything is in good shape now.  Of course if
you have any problems with the web site you can call us on 303-752-3382
between 10am and 6pm MST.  Our office will be closed between
November 17th and November 21st  but the web site and email should be
working during that time and we will catch up as quickly as possible
when we return.  Your patience is appreciated.

As always, pictures and more information are available on the Milestone
Technologies web sites (Morse Express, Oak Hills Research, and

Please use our secure on-line ordering facilities or call
1-877-DOT DASH (877-368-3274) or 1-866-OHR-KITS (866-647-5487)
TOLL FREE to order by phone.  And feel free to call me
personally on (303) 752-3382 for more information about any of our
products or services.

Marshall Emm, N1FN

Milestone Technologies,
Morse Express, OHR, and AMECO.
10691 E Bethany Drive STE 800
Aurora CO 80014
Phone: (303)752-3382

"Everything for the Morse Enthusiast"

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Michigan PRB -1 Call to Action – Michigan Senate

To the hams of Michigan:

Subject: Michigan PRB -1 Call to Action – Michigan Senate

On September 16, 2014, members of the Michigan PRB -1 Committee
attended a Senate Hearing in Lansing regarding Senate Bill 0493. We are
extremely pleased to report that SB 0493 Substitute S-2 to codify the
language of 47 CFR Part 97.15 into state law was unanimously passed out
of the Energy and Technology Committee. You can see SB 0493 S-2 on our
PRB-1 website located here:

It is time for us to begin our letter writing campaign targeting our
Michigan Senators in a effort to encourage them to look closely at SB
0493 and to vote in favor of the bill when it comes up for a vote on
the Senate floor. A very important part of communication with our
elected officials is that we need to keep our focus on the positive
side. This is not the place to discuss his or her voting record or what
other legislation they have supported or not supported. It is vital that
we stay on topic and deal with only the subject at hand.

The appropriate documentation has been prepared on our Michigan PRB-1
website located at and you can read more and
find sample letters there. 

It is very important that we concentrate ONLY on the Senate right now.
When and if the Senate passes the bill, then we will change the
emphasis to the members of the House. The letters are identical except
for the appropriate changes to reflect where the letters are going. 

All you need to do is to copy the prepared letter from our website, add
your Senator’s information and your information to the letter and
email it to your Senator asking for his or her support. You can find
out who your Senator is and how to reach him or her here:

The website noted above will give you a direct email address for your
Senator. When your letter is customized with your Senator’s
information and your information, you can send your letter direction to
your Senator. The lack of a physical signature is not important here. By
the very nature of the method of contacting them, an actual signature is
difficult to accomplish.

Please send me a copy of your letter ( as this will help
our committee to gauge our effectiveness.

If things work the way we would like them to, our efforts will turn to
the Michigan House once our bill passes the Senate. And when and if our
bill passes the House, then we will turn our attention to the
Governor’s office to urge him to sign our bill into law.

This is the very best opportunity we have to make a difference for the
hams of Michigan. Talk it up, and step forward to make sure that your
friends (ham and non-ham) have the information and that they are
encouraged to act. We need to add our voices to this bill to help
ensure that our representatives act on our behalf.

Thank you in advance and 73!

Larry, WB8R 

Michigan ARRL Section Manager

ARRL Michigan Section
Section Manager: Larry Camp, WB8R

To unsubscribe from messages, go to:

Saturday, August 9, 2014

GAREC 2014 to be Held in Conjunction with 2014 HUNTSVILLE HAMFEST

The 2014 Global Amateur Radio Emergency Conference will be held this year just prior to the Huntsville Hamfest, in Huntsville Alabama. The conference will take place August 14th and 15th at the Embassy Suites Hotel which is adjacent to the convention venue at the Von Braun Convention Center. The hamfest will immediately follow on the weekend of August 16th and 17th.

Planners of the 2014 Global Amateur Radio Emergency Conference say that all emergency communication minded radio amateurs and professionals planners from around the world are invited to attend. They add that the conference agenda, full information and a website are currently being developed. More on the Huntsville Hamfest is on line at

Source (VK3PC)

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

"The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2014"

The just-concluded ARRL National Centennial Convention in Hartford, Connecticut, helped to impart added energy into efforts to line up co-sponsors for "The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2014" also known as House of Representatives measure H R 4969.

H R 4969 was introduced in the US House of Representatives with bipartisan support in late June. It asks Congress to direct the FCC to apply the "reasonable accommodation" three-part test of the PRB-1 federal pre-emption policy to private land-use restrictions regarding antennas. 

The measures primary sponsor is Republican Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois. It received initial co-sponsorship from Democrat Joe Courtney of Connecticut. Four additional members of the House had since signed aboard to co-sponsor the bill by July 24th. On July 29th, ARRL Hudson Division Director Mike Lisenco, N2YBB, posted to Facebook that two more House law makers had thrown their support to H R 4969. . 

By way of background, right now present PRB-1 only applies to state and municipal land-use ordinances. The FCC has indicated that it will not act to provide the same legal protections from private land-use agreements -- often called covenants, conditions, and restrictions without direction from Congress. As such, the Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2014 is an attempt by the League to muster the needed push to get the FCC to act on this matter.

Speaking at the convention, ARRL General Counsel Chris Imlay, W3KD, says that there already is precedent for the FCC to act. He explains that the Commission's so-called Over-the-Air Receiving Device rules currently preempt private land-use agreements to permit the installation of television antennas and satellite dishes. Based on this, Imlay suggests that making the leap to reasonably accommodating outdoor amateur radio antennas is within the FCC's regulatory scope. This, given the established strong federal interest in effective amateur radio communication.

On the other side, Imlay said the bill faces opposition from the Community Associations Institute and an organization called Associa. The latter has already suggested to Representative Kinzinger that he "re-think" the bill. As such, Imlay says that a lot more co-sponsors are needed for this bill.

While the ARRL has been very successful in getting HR 4969 before the House of Representatives it appears as if not every ham is in favor of its being passed into law. In an interview on the video podcast HamRadioNow, viewer Mike Alexander, N8MSA takes what he calls a principled stand against the measure.

N8MSA spends about 40 minutes explaining his point of view and answering questions from moderator Gary Pearce, KN4AQ. You can see the interview in episode 158 of the video podcast HamRadioNow at (HamRadioNow)

Source Gary Bernstein, N9VU

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Letter from Camp

Letter from camp;

Dear Mom,

Our Scoutmaster told us all to write to our parents in case you
saw the flood on TV and worried.  We are OK.  Only one of our
tents and two sleeping bags got washed away.  Luckily, none of us
got drowned because we were all up on the mountain looking for
Chad when it happened.

Oh yes, please call Chad's mother and tell her that he's OK.  He
can't write because of the cast. I got to ride on one of the
search and rescue jeeps. It was neat. We never would have found
him in the dark if it hadn't been for the lightning.

Scoutmaster Webb got mad at Chad for going on a hike alone
without telling anyone.  Chad said he did tell him, but it was
during the fire so he probably didn't hear him.

Did you know that if you put a gas can on a fire, the gas can
will blow up?  Billy is going to look weird until his hair grows

We will be home on Saturday if Scoutmaster Webb gets the car
fixed. It wasn't his fault about the wreck.  The brakes worked OK
when we left. Scoutmaster Webb said that with a car that old you
to have to expect something to break down; that's probably why he
can't get insurance on it. We think it's a neat car.  He doesn't
care if we get it dirty, and if it's hot, sometimes he lets us
ride in the tailgate. It gets pretty hot with ten people in a

Scoutmaster Webb is a neat guy. Don't worry, he is a good driver.
  In fact, he is teaching Terry how to drive. But he only lets him
drive on the mountain roads where there isn't any traffic. All we
ever see up there are logging trucks.

Guess what?  We have all passed our first aid merit badges. When
Dave dove in the lake and cut his arm, we got to see how a
tourniquet works.

Also, Wade and I threw up.  Scoutmaster Webb said it probably was
just food poisoning from  the leftover chicken. He said they got
sick that way with the food they ate in prison.

I'm so glad he got out and became our scoutmaster. He said he
sure figured out how to get things done better while he was doing
his time.

I have to go now. We are going into town to mail our letters and
buy more bullets and dynamite.

Don't worry about anything.  We are fine.


Saturday, July 5, 2014

World War II Field Phone

I received this U.S. Army Field Phone from a friend. 

We are thinking it is WWII.


Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Central States VHF Society is Soliciting Papers for Conference

The Central States VHF Society is soliciting papers and presentations for the 48th annual conference slated for July 25th to the 27th in Austin, Texas.

Papers and presentations pertaining to all aspects of operation on VHF and above frequencies other than FM and repeaters are welcome. The due date for all entries is April 23rd with all submission going via e-mail to Tom Apel or Dick Hanson via e-mail to tom at k5tra dot net or dick at dkhanson dot com.

This years featured dinner speaker will be Jimmy Treybig, W6JKV. And possibly as an added incentive, planners say that there will be Best Presentation and Best Technical Paper awards presented at this year’s convention banquet. 
Source: (VHF Reflector)

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Quote for Today

I found this quote many years ago in a family members bible that was given to me. 

Nothing marked in it. No personal notes.

Just a book marker that read this quote. 

"Be true to yourself, help others, make each day your masterpiece, make friendship a fine art, drink deeply from good books - especially the Bible, build a shelter against a rainy day, give thanks for your blessings and pray for guidance every day."

Saturday, June 21, 2014


I bought this entire kit of tubes for $10.00 dollars.

I know, what to do with them? I have many projects in mind.

My Stamp Collecting Blog

Counter Added January 1, 2011

free counters


The A index [ LOW is GOOD ]

  • 1 to 6 is BEST
  • 7 to 9 is OK
  • 11 or more is BAD

Represents the overall geomagnetic condition of the ionosphere ("Ap" if averaged from the Kp-Index) (an average of the eight 3-hour K-Indices) ('A' referring to amplitude) over a given 24 hour period, ranging (linearly) typically from 1-100 but theoretically up to 400.

A lower A-Index generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; a low & steady Ap-Index generally suggest good propagation on the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.

SFI index [ HIGH is GOOD ]

  • 70 NOT GOOD
  • 80 GOOD
  • 90 BETTER
  • 100+ BEST

The measure of total radio emissions from the sun at 10.7cm (2800 MHz), on a scale of 60 (no sunspots) to 300, generally corresponding to the sunspot level, but being too low in energy to cause ionization, not related to the ionization level of the Ionosphere.

Higher Solar Flux generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; Solar Flux rarely affects the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.

K index [ LOW is GOOD ]

  • 0 or 1 is BEST
  • 2 is OK
  • 3 or more is BAD
  • 5 is VERY VERY BAD

The overall geomagnetic condition of the ionosphere ("Kp" if averaged over the planet) over the past 3 hours, measured by 13 magnetometers between 46 & 63 degrees of latitude, and ranging quasi-logarithmically from 0-9. Designed to detect solar particle radiation by its magnetic effect. A higher K-index generally means worse HF conditions.

A lower K-Index generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; a low & steady Kp-Index generally suggest good propagation on the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.

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