W E C A
Serving the Public through Amateur Radio and Serving Amateurs since 1972
Westchester Emergency Communications Association
PO Box 831 Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591-0831
Please send email to: Membership@Weca.Org
See us on Facebook at WECA Ham Radio Club
2022 WECA Events
Field Day 2022
For 2022, Summer Field Day will be held on Saturday, June 25 and Sunday June 26. For details, please click here to view an article about Field Day from the ARRL. WECA plans to hold its Field Day at Harbor Island in Mamaroneck, NY. For details, please contact Kathy O'Keefe / KD2VCT by sending email to her at KC2VCT@Weca.Org.
Interested in joining WECA?
WECA is a Ham Radio club located in Westchester County, NY about 25 miles north of New York City. Currently the group holds monthly via Zoom (no meetings in July and August). Please click here to download an information brochure about the club. If you would like to join WECA, then please click here to download a membership application form and click here to download our Repeater Use Policy. These downloads require that you have Adobe Acrobat Reader on your computer to read or print these documents. Member applications may be sent in electronically or via USPS mail for processing. If you have any questions about the club, then please send email to Membership@Weca.Org.
Upcoming Member meeting dates for 2022
WECA received notice from Westchester County that the County Center in White Plains where we normally hold our monthly meetings will be closed for regular operations until further notice, so our January 2022 through June 2022 meetings will be via Zoom and not in person. Credentials are sent to members with email addresses about a day in advance of the online meeting.
The following are the "Zoom" meeting dates which are on Monday nights at 7pm.
May 23, 2022 - WECA Board meeting (7:30 pm)
June 13, 2022 - General member meeting which will discuss Field Day 2022 preparations, elections for Office and Directors
July 25, 2022 - WECA Board meeting (7:30 pm)
Aug 22, 2022 - WECA Board meeting (7:30 pm)
Sep 12, 2022 - General member meeting (presentation is TBA)
Our next WECA Board meeting will be on May 23, 2022
We will have our next WECA Board meeting on Monday, May 23 at 7:30 pm via Zoom. WECA members are invited to attend and Zoom credentials will be sent 24 hours in advance of the meeting.
Interested in Winlink?
Please click here to view the first Winlink video lesson presented on November 24, 2021 by Dr. Mark Chung / KK6SMD .
Upcoming public service events
Please see the Public Service Events calendar for 2022 "in person" events. The 2022 calendar will be published in January 2022. As always, volunteers are needed to fill the positions at these events. Please contact Kathy / email@example.com with any questions or suggestions.
Free Ham Radio exam preparation classes
All classes are currently planned to be offered both in the Fire Training Center classroom and virtually using the Zoom app.
WECA conducts an Amateur Exam preparation classes beginning in September for technician, early January for Extra Class and General Class sessions ending in mid May. The classes are held every Tuesday evening from 7 to 9:15 PM. You are invited to attend any or all of WECA’s training classes even if you are not planning on taking the test. You just may want to learn more about a particular subject from our excellent instructors. Please join us anytime! For more details, please see below.
Please contact Larrie: W2UL@Weca.Org for access information or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
VE Testing - now in person at 4 Dana Road, Valhalla, NY
We are pleased to announce that the in person Ham Radio (VE) Testing session was on Thursday May 12, 2022 at the Fire Training Center. The Fire Training Center is located at 4 Dana Road in Valhalla, NY. Future Ham Radio tests will be given in 2022. Please contact Bob Casino / N2GDY for more information about future sessions. Bob can be reached at N2GDY@Weca.Org.
Upcoming Free Ham Radio License Preparation Classes
All classes are currently planned to be offered both in the FTC classroom and virtually using the Zoom app.
The dates may change slightly from the dates posted below.
Have you ever thought about becoming an Amateur Radio “Ham” operator? Here are some great opportunities to learn about Ham radio and to study for your FCC license with seasoned Ham radio operators as your teachers and mentors!
The Westchester Emergency Communications Association (WECA: www.weca.org) is proud to sponsor free Ham Radio License courses. Come take your first steps and join the exciting world of Amateur Radio. Enjoy talking to other Amateur Radio Operators, near and far! Want to experiment with new technologies that utilize computers interfaced with radios? Would you like to join forces with county government and local volunteer organizations as Amateur Radio Operators for Emergency Communications assistance and Public Service events? Take your first steps by joining us for this interactive course taught by a team of knowledgeable Amateur Radio Operators with a passion for their subjects.
WECA conducts an Amateur Technician class every fall, which will begin in mid September 2022 and wrap up during the second week in November. The Technician class will meet every Tuesday evening from 7 to 9:15 PM.
WECA's Ham Radio Test Preparation class for the Extra Class Ticket will begin in early January 2023. The class will run for 10 weeks every Tuesday evening from 7 to 9:15 PM. On Thursday of the 10th week an FCC license testing session will be conducted at the Fire Training Center, 4 Dana Road, Valhalla, NY. A schedule showing the topics covered in each Amateur Extra class session will be published.
WECA's Ham Radio Test Preparation class for the General Class Ticket will begin on in mid March 2023. The class will run for 9 weeks every Tuesday evening from 7 to 9:15 PM. On Thursday of the 9th week an FCC license testing session will be conducted at the Fire Training Center, 4 Dana Road, Valhalla, NY. A schedule showing the topics covered in each Amateur General class session may be found here.
If you have any other questions, please send email to our Education Director Larrie Sutliff / W2UL at email@example.com.
VE sessions are normally held on the second Thursday of each month at the Fire Training Center in Valhalla. Please contact Bob Casino: N2GDY@Weca.Org with any questions you may have.
Please click here to go to the WECA.APP site for further details about the classes.
What you missed at a previous WECA meeting
Our guest presenter for the May 9, 2022 meeting was the ARRL Hudson Director - N2RJ / Ria Jiram who discussed ARRL / Hudson Division happenings & News.
At the March 14, 2022 meeting we had a great presentation about contesting by Tim Duffy / K3LR. He showed the group his contesting station which was AMAZING! Tim also gave the group a short presentation on DX Engineering's new Amateur Radio products.
Tom Raffaelli / WB2NHC gave a presentation at our February 14, 2022 general meeting on the use of Winlink for Amateur Radio.
Our January 2022 meeting was a presentation about radio wave propagation with Rich Kautz / KC2HZW.
Our November 8 meeting was a DMR / Digital Radio presentation by Steve / KD2OFD. His Power Point may be viewed here.
For our September 13, 2021 meeting we had two presenters. Tom / WB2NHC who discussed "Ham 101", and how to operate at public service events, and on the Ham bands. Our second guest was Deborah Kerr / KC2GPV who gave a presentation on the 50th Anniversary of the NYC Marathon and its Ham Radio volunteers.
There were no member meetings in July and August 2021. There were however Board meetings on the forth Monday in July and August 2021.
The June 14, 2021 meeting was a Field Day 2021 presentation with Tom Raffaelli / WB2NHC and plenty of pictures of previous Field Days at the Harbor Island Park in Mamaroneck. We also conducted elections for our 2021-2022 Officers and Directors.
Our May 10 meeting was presented by Tom Raffaelli / WB2NHC who discussed WECA's relationship with RACES / ARES complete with a Power Point slide show.
Our April 12, 2021 meeting was with Valerie Hotzfeld / NV9L. Valerie has been a guest presenter at WECA before when she gave a lecture about the Puerto Rico Hurricane response in 2018 of which she was a Ham Radio volunteer. Although she has created many presentations, this meeting was about about contesting and a film clip about the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. .
Our March 8, 2021 virtual meeting was a presentation by Alan / W2AEW who discussed the use of basic test equipment usage, meters and oscilloscopes. This was a great presentation to new Hams as well as experienced license holders. The Power Point slide presentation in PDF format may be downloaded here.
The February 8, 2021 virtual Zoom meeting had two presentations. The first presentation was by Joe Eisenberg / K0NER discussing kit building . Joe presented a very in depth tour of kit building, sources, and best practices for building all types of kits. The second presenter was Rob Calouri / KD2QLQ discussing WinLink - the Amateur radio email application. Rob gave a step by step presentation of getting started with Winlink on 145.07 (WB2ZII-10 [WECA]). He also discussed modems, speed, protocols, file attachments, and clear text (non-secure) exchange of messages.
The January 11, 2021 virtual Zoom meeting was a presentation by Steve / KD2OFD concerning APRS. Please click here for Steve's presentation.
The December 2020 virtual meeting featured a series of short presentations by WECA Members. The presenters included a digital presentation by Kevin / KD2PDL. Richard / KC2HZW discussed his home station. Stan / WA2NRV gave a presentation about the long lost art of soldering and Kathleen / KC2VCT gave a Holiday Culinary presentation.
The November 2020 virtual meeting was all about CW. Our guest presenters were from the Long Island CW Club. Howard WB2UZE and Jim W6JIM did a great job discussing the art to learning CW. They have a Very Successful Program on how you can Learn CW.
The October 2020 "Zoom" meeting featured Rich Kautz / KC2HZW who discussed propagation on the six and ten meter bands. He will also discussed using FT8 for long distance contacts on 80 to 6 meters. We are sorry that you missed a very informative set of presentations!
Our September 2020 virtual meeting had a presentation by John Lembke from the Westchester Department of Emergency Services and radiological training for Indian Point . Deborah Kerr / KC2GPV who is the Amateur Radio Communications Director at firstname.lastname@example.org discussed Ham Radio's participation in the various foot races hosted by the New York City Road Runners. Such races include the New York City Marathon usually held the first Sunday in November which is cancelled for 2020. Other races include the half Marathon and NYC Triathlon.
Our June 2020 meeting was about Field Day 2020 and how the club was going to participate in this yearly event as stations at home and not at Mamaroneck's Harbor Island Park. Please click here to see details about how WECA participated in this unusual Field Day event.
Our May 2020 virtual meeting using Zoom was led by Ria Jiram / N2RJ- the Hudson Division Director. She discussed many topics about the ARRL including how to handle Field Day 2020 and VE testing.
The April 2020 meeting was our second virtual meeting using Zoom. Our presenter was Adrian Ciuperca / KO8SCA who discussed his DXPeditions to Tokelau and Bhutan.
The March 2020 WECA Meeting was our first "Virtual Meeting" using "Zoom" the live presentation sharing website with Steve Pendzuk discussing DMR radio and its programming. Please click here to see Steve's excellent Power Point presentation in PDF format.
The February 2020 meeting was a Web presentation by Jason Oldham / KM4ACK and the use of Raspberry PI computers for Ham Radio Applications. Jason has published many YouTube videos about Raspberry Pi usage in Ham Radio.
Our January 2020 meeting with Bill KA2OFM and Simon KD2DOE discussed the upcoming Winter Field Day event in Mamaroneck.
At our December 2019 meeting member Rob Calouri / KD2QLQ gave a factual presentation about Internet Security. Many members learned about some of the fallacies that exist about Internet security and how one can better protect themselves and their information.
The November 2019 meeting featured a presentation about Echolink by Steve Pendzuk / KD2OFD. A Powerpoint presentation was shown and is available as an Acrobat file by clicking here.
Our October 2019 meeting presenter was John Lemke from the Westchester County Department of Emergency Services (DES) who discussed the use of dosimeters and the correct protocols that are in place should a radiological event occur. WECA member Kai Chen / K2TRW gave a presentation explaining what DMR is, described and provided history regarding the various flavors of DMR, and had a question and answer session while showing DMR products from Anytone. It was a busy night!
Our September 2019 presenter was Tom Raffaelli / WB2NHC who gave a presentation and slide show about good Ham Radio operating procedures.
Our June 2019 presenter was Tom Raffaelli / WB2NHC who gave a presentation and slide show about previous Field Day events.
Our presenters at the May 2019 meeting was Deborah M. Kerr / K2GPV and Mike Hoeft / K2MPH who are the 2019 Verizon NYC Triathlon and TCS NYC Marathon Amateur Radio Communications Directors.
Our March 2019 meeting was a Skype connection with Bob Heil.
WECA institutes a Repeater Acceptable Use Policy
December 31, 2017:
Over the past few months there have been some Hams using the WB2ZII repeater systems in an inappropriate manner. As a result, our Board of Directors have created the "WECA Repeater Acceptable Use Policy" which illustrates how all our repeater systems shall be used by all. Please click here to download this document.
Please review the policy and if you have any questions, comments or hear users that do not comply with this policy, please send email to TWIT@Weca.Org.
Public Service Events
WECA has DMR on 438.7125 / 433.7125
WECA now supports both analog FM and DMR on 438.7125. Don't know what DMR is? Please click here to learn about this new amateur radio digital mode. If you have questions about DMR, please contact Dwight / N2FMC by sending email to n2fmc at weca dot org or Steve / KD2OFD by sending email to KD2OFD at weca dot org.
An excellent DMR presentation in PDF format by KD2OFD. Click here
Instructions how to create a DMR "code plug" - click here.
WECA's 2022 Public Service Events
Below are the planned Public Service events that WECA members can participate in for 2022.
If your not-for-profit organization needs free communications assistance with a foot race or walk event in Westchester County, NY , please send email to PublicService@Weca.Org.
Are you a local Ham near Westchester County, NY and are interested in helping out with Public Service Events? If so, please contact our Public Service Director by sending email to PublicService@Weca.Org.
Public Service Operators Needed!
Please contact Kathleen O'Keefe / KC2VCT if you would like to participate in the upcoming Public Service events that WECA helps by supplying Ham Radio communicators. Operators are needed for other upcoming events. This is the best possible emergency preparedness training for Ham Radio communicators available, so please send email now to Kathy / KC2VCT at PublicService@Weca.Org and volunteer!
Please welcome our newest WECA members
Call sign Name Location
KD2YAZ Robert White Plains
KD2WXW Jenn Mahopac
W2LMR John Huntington, LI
W2BOS Andrew New York City
W3DDL Art Mt. Kisco
W2FUR Asuna Botsford, CT
KD2YSE Avi Eastchester
WB2EC Barry New Rochelle
Want to learn about RFI, Ferrites, Baluns and Audio interfacing but don't have time for a class?
Dwight Smith / N2FMC has found an interesting and downloadable publication that is continuously updated by the author Jim Brown/K9YC.
Click here to view or download this treasure trove of information about RFI, Ferrites, Baluns and Audio interfacing.
Want to learn about "Return Loss"?
OK, so what is return loss? Click here for Wikipedia's answer. So how good is that feed line and much power is really getting out of the cable to the antenna? Any faults with the cable or connectors? Is there really an antenna connected? Finally, what is being reflected back down the line as loss?
Dwight / N2FMC has found a few URLs that discusses and calculates Return Loss.
Here is a link that discusses the math, please click here.
This link compares SWR to Return loss in a chart, please click here.
Another SWR chart link, please click here.
And finally an online Return Loss calculator, please click here.
Traveling abroad and want to use your US Ham license during your trip abroad?
Please read this document created by the FCC DA-11-211 to help explain the process of using your Ham callsign in "CEPT" countries in Europe.
Having troubles using the WECA Repeater system?
Sometimes due to summer band conditions, distance repeaters can be heard on our 2 meter repeater frequency of 147.060 MHz. Once someone in greater Westchester County keys up on the input using a PL of 114.8 Hz, the distant repeater interference subsides. This is normal (especially in the summer) and many times you may hear a Connecticut repeater located in the northeast corner of the state or sometimes a Philadelphia repeater can be heard as well.
But, if you have been having troubles using the repeater system or are hearing interference, please send email to Repeaters@Weca.Org detailing the trouble or interference that you are experiencing. Our Repeater and Technical Directors will quickly look into the problem.
Please welcome our 2021 - 2022 Officers & Directors
At the June 14, 2021 virtual meeting, the following Officers & Directors were elected into office.
President - Simon Rosenberg / KD2DOE
Executive Vice President - Bill Bohnenberger / KA2OFM
Vice President / General Counsel - Michael Weitzner / N2EJI
Treasurer - Andy Farber / N4OOX
Secretary - Vacant
Director at Large - Vacant
Digital Modes - Kevin Duffelmeyer / KD2PDL
Education Director - Larrie Sutliff / W2UL
Emergency Services Director - Tom Raffaelli / WB2NHC
Engineering Director - Bob Wilson / N2DVQ
Membership Director - Peter Johnson / N2TFC
Newsletter Editor - Vacant
Public Service Director - Kathleen O'Keefe / KC2VCT
Publicity Director - Vacant
Repeater Operations Director - Dwight Smith / N2FMC
Social Activities Director - Vacant
Directors and honorariums appointed by the board
Trustees - Tom Raffaelli / WB2NHC, Bob Wilson / N2DVQ
County Liaison - Michael Volk / W2MKV
President Emeritus - Bill Bohnenberger / KA2OFM
Webmaster / CIO - Peter Johnson / N2TFC
There will be club elections at the June ZOOM meeting which will be held on Monday, June 13, 2022 at 7pm. If you have any questions for the Officers & Directors, please email them with your questions by sending email to their call sign @weca dot org email address.
The WECAgram Newsletter is always online
WECA's monthly newsletter about Ham Radio events, projects and its local members in the greater Westchester County, NY area located about 20 miles north of New York City.
Do you have something for the WECAgram? Please send your article to The WECAgram Editor by sending email to WECAgram@Weca.Org.
Looking for special Ham Radio related websites?
WECA member Dwight Smith / N2FMC has found a bunch of web sites containing ham radio related information. Please click here for a list of "Dwight's Sites". If you have any technical or Ham Radio related sites and would like to share these sites with others, please send email to sites at "weca dot org".
Found - old WECAGRAMS!
Nick / K2ZVI (SK) found some old WECAGRAMS while cleaning one day to share with the newer members. Please click on any date below to view these found treasures!
If you have some old WECAgrams that could be "PDF" scanned, please send email to Peter / N2TFC - webmaster at weca dot org
WB2NHC - Tom Raffaelli was awarded Ham of the year!
Tom was first licensed in 1964. His interests then, as now, were in experimenting and building radio devices. Tom married Jeanne Fyfe in 1966. They moved into a three room apartment in the Bronx. Due to space limitations Tom operated exclusively on the VHF and UHF bands. In 1970, with two children in tow, Tom and Jeanne moved to a home in Thornwood New York. Beam antennas, verticals and wire dipoles soon sprang up on the roof and in the yard. In 1979 Tom joined the New Rochelle Communications Club and soon after that the Westchester Emergency Communications Association (WECA). He was elected Vice President of WECA in 1985 and President in 1987, and served for seven years. WECA doubled its membership under Tom's leadership, strengthened its affiliation with Westchester County's Office of Disaster and Emergency Services and initiated an affiliation with the Westchester chapter of the American Red Cross. He expanded the club's Field Day event and grew WECAFEST, the club's hamfest event into a major "must attend" event. Tom is now Director of Emergency Services.
Tom served as President of TSARC for several years and resolved several long standing coordination disputes and established a coordination waiting list for all bands. Tom taught many Amateur Radio license classes over the years bringing more than 50 people into the hobby. Tom began volunteering at the New York City Marathon in the mid eighties and is currently the ham radio supervisor at the Family Reunion area.
Tom was instrumental in establishing extremely strong relationships between WECA and the Westchester County Department of Emergency Services and the American Red Cross. Both of these organizations are providing funding and support for maintenance of WECA's communications vehicles and equipment as well as providing meeting space and training facilities. Tom recently retired from the County of Westchester as its Director of Radio Systems. Tom continues to build on the strong ties between RACES, WECA and the county government while helping to bring state of art communications facilities to the county's public safety departments.
Amateur of the Year Award Sponsored jointly by:
As printed in the Hudson Division Awards Diner pamphlet from November 12, 2005
So, where were you in '72 ? When WECA was born !
On the first Friday night in early April 1972, five men met in Tarrytown, NY at William T. Knott's (former W2QGH/ K2AVP-sk) home to form what is now the Westchester Emergency Communications Association (WECA). Thirty one years ago these middle aged "family" men were Ham Radio hobbyists who decided start this club "for the continuation of the Civil Defense Radio network in Westchester County, NY". Meeting minutes from those early gatherings can be read by clicking here.
WECA thanks John von Sneidern, Jr. / K2GTY for copies of those notes "from the beginning" of WECA and Efrem Acosta / W2CZ for organizing this historic project.
Comments (good/bad)? Please let us know by sending email to membership at weca dot org.