March 7, 2021…
Brendan Denney, KEØFCG
With the end of the pandemic on the distant horizon, there will be a return to normal, but it may be a new normal. What will give our club the longest reach into the community and the future? I joined this club, rather than the others in this city, because SLSRC is active. Now that we are more than a year into the pandemic and nearing one year since our last in-person event, we are still active as a club; our Tuesday night nets are still averaging over thirty checkins. Our online classes, the Back to Basics, and upcoming Mentoring Workshop that Cliff KCØSDV, Paul KCØCBL and the Education Committee have been working on diligently have also been well attended.
After the success of Winterfest being online this year, we saw an opportunity to build the club’s YouTube channel and generate additional revenue. Our next step would be to increase subscribers. If you aren’t regularly on YouTube watching ham videos, give it a try. There are many channels covering everything from getting started, operation of modern and antique radios, passing any level of the test, unboxing the latest in HTs, to component level repairs on antique radios using antique test equipment.
Where do we stand out? Honestly, I don’t know yet. But in my opinion, the way to attract an audience is to give them something to watch. Those that were on the February 23 Tuesday night net were asked if you would watch it as a live stream and I didn’t really know what to expect as an answer. The answers ranged from disinterest to talking about how convenient it would be. I personally fall into the second category. Having two little boys ages 2 & 5, I rarely get the chance to do more than a short time check-in, then run back upstairs; I either listen via EchoLink if it didn’t timeout, or listen to the rest on Broadcastify. Streaming to YouTube would make us more accessible.
In the next few months, we’re going to do a series of monthly live stream events starting the 3rd Thursday of March. This series will be an attempt to build all of our skills while remaining accessible to any ham. First up we will be doing a kit build. The kit is an inexpensive and relatively simple item that will come in handy soon: an offset attenuator. The offset attenuator is similar in use to a resistive attenuator but has better control with strong signals. The kit can be found at https://kc9on.com/product/fox-hunt-offset-attenuator/, use the discount code ‘SLSRC’ (it works on their whole store) for 10% off, bringing the kit in at $13 including shipping. The second build will consist of a directional antenna. After we build our attenuators and antennas, we’ll be ready for a fox hunt! We are planning a fox hunt later this Spring.
In closing we’re going to go back to ‘normal’ as soon as we can but, in the meantime, we have been given the opportunity to spread our reach on YouTube so we’re going to give it a shot. If it takes off, we can bring more people to the club or the hobby. If it doesn’t, we will at the very least have more resources to show our new members.