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IRTS Radio News Bulletin Sunday September 21st 2003

Removal of Morse Requirement

ComReg have announced that with effect from the 15th of September 2003 a Morse Test is no longer required for access to the HF Bands. Accordingly, B licensees may now operate freely on all the HF Bands subject to the same power limits applicable to A licensees. No formal application is required to avail of this concession.

Because not all countries operating under the CEPT agreement have yet removed the mandatory Morse requirement, operation by B licensees on the HF Bands abroad is confined to those countries that have done so.

At this point there will be no change to existing callsigns. B licensees who wish to do so may apply for an A callsign but will be required to pass a Morse test. New licence applicants who have passed the Theory Test will continue to be issued with a callsign having a three letter suffix ending in B, unless they also pass a Morse Test.

Theory Examination

The IRTS Committee is very concerned that it has not been possible to arrange Theory Tests for some considerable time. Following discussions with ComReg, agreement in principle has been reached to hold a Theory Test in Dublin later in the year. Date and venue for this Exam has not yet been agreed but announcements will be made in good time in Echo Ireland and the Radio News. In the meantime, those interested in sitting this Exam should advise Derek O' Reilly of ComReg of their interest. In due course, he will contact all applicants on his list with the date and venue.

Irish Amateur Television Club

On Sunday October the 5th, club members will meet for an informal outdoor gathering/picnic at Bellewstown Racecourse, which is just west of the M1, north of Balbriggan. There will be demonstrations of ATV equipment and test equipment for the microwave bands. All are welcome to attend.

Start time is 2 p.m. Talk in is on the ATV channel 144.750 MHz. Please do come along and make a day of it.

Limerick Radio Club

Limerick Radio Club would like to remind members that they are hosting the AGM of the IRTS on the 7th of March 2004. The location will be the Greenhills Hotel, Limerick. There will be a dinner held on the previous evening, which will give all attending a chance to meet up. There has been a good response from the UK in relation to attending. The rally on the Sunday will be as good as last year if not better. More news will follow soon.

South Dublin Radio Club

A final reminder that Radio Theory classes will commence in South Dublin Radio Club on Tuesday next the 23rd of September at 8.00 pm. The classes will be held in the club QTH, which is the Ballyroan Community Centre, Marian Road, Rathfarnham, Dublin 14.

SSB Field Day

Following on from the success of the CW field day it was decided in consultation with interested clubs and individuals to provide a central location to set up stations for the SSB Field day which took place on the 6th & 7th of September.

The Shannon Basin Radio Club offered to the committee, with the kind permission of Fr. Niall Foley EI4CF the use of St. Joseph's College Garbally, Ballinasloe, Co. Galway and with over 280 acres of beautifully maintained grounds proved to be an ideal location.

Seven stations set up at the college for the event with participants travelling from all over Ireland and in one fell swoop comfortably provided the highest level of participation in Field day for many years.

Stations taking part were, South Dublin Radio Club who had a their main station in the open category and also had a second station in the restricted section. Dalkey Island Contest Group brought seven operators to spread the load. Dundalk Amateur radio Society who had a very neat set-up including barbecue, IRTS President Sean EI4GK and Declan EI9HQ operated in the open section as EI1F, the locally based Shannon Basin Radio Club enjoyed their first Field day outing. Dave EI4BZ travelled from Cork with offers of free food and refreshments was hoping to attract journeymen contesters to assist at his station.

Paul EI2CA presented the Contest Manager with six beautiful Dublin Crystal paperweights each inscribed with 'IRTS SSB Field Day 2003' for use as prizes for the participants at Ballinasloe. One was presented to Fr. Niall EI4CF as a small thank you for the use of the college grounds, a raffle was held among all the participants and Brian EI8IU was the lucky winner, the remaining 4 will be awarded to the winner of each section and the winners of a special 'Field Day Sprint' organised at the site for the best score in each section between 2000 and 2400 UTC.

In all, almost 30 licensees took part at the various stations over the weekend and there was a steady stream of visitors to site and some curiosity from local people enjoying their walks through the grounds of the college. The WX was almost perfect until the contest ended and the rain arrived just as it was time to dismantle the stations.

The Contest Manager Noel EI2JC and the IRTS Committee would like to thank all participants in Field Day for their contribution to the success of the event and in particular Fr. Niall Ei4CF and the Shannon Basin Radio Club for their invaluable assistance with the fine venue.

Phoenix ARC Theory Classes

Phoenix Amateur Radio Club are planning a theory course leading to the Radio Experimenter Examination. Classes will be held in Coolmine on Thursday evenings 7 p.m. to 8.30 p.m. For further information contact Dan Lloyd at 01-8382774 or at Daniellloyd

Counties Contest A reminder that the closing date for receipt of logs for the Autumn 2 metre counties contest is the 30th of September. All logs must be emailed or post-marked by this date. Late entries will not be accepted under any circumstances. Logs should be emailed to and postal entries should preferably be sent direct to the Contest Manager Noel Walsh EI2JC at QTHR or may be sent to IRTS, PO Box 462, Dublin 9.

Even if you do not wish to make a formal entry to the contest, copies of your log during the contest would be appreciated for verification purposes.

EI5EM Web Site

Tony, EI5EM is currently in the process of updating his Amateur Radio Pages on the QSL.NET server. A discussion message board has been added as part of the process. This is available to all amateurs who are seeking components, equipment or general information on any aspect of the hobby, including items for sale. It is hoped that the board will also be useful as a sounding board for personal views on amateur radio. Tony has started the ball rolling by posting his own views on the almost imminent demise of the Morse requirement for obtaining a licence.

The message board can be accessed as a link from Tony's website at The full address of the site is If you wish to use this free service please confine postings to radio related topics and of course be courteous at all times.

Blarney Rally

This year the Blarney Rally will be held on Sun the 21st of September at the Blarney Park Hotel Co. Cork. The official website of the Blarney Rally is Blarney is just 2 miles from Cork and is accessible from all major routes.

MREN Rally

The 2003 Mayo Rally will be held on Sunday November the 16th in The Belmont Hotel, Knock, with doors opening at 11.00 a.m. Listeners will remember the success of the first Mayo rally last year, and the club are already hard at work to ensure a repeat success.

South Eastern Amateur Radio Group

The next general meeting of the club will take place on Wednesday the 24th of September at 8.00 p.m.

The 2 metre voice repeater EI2WRC remains off air for the moment. In the meantime, the IRTS Radio news from Waterford at 9.30 p.m. each Tuesday will be read on 145.575 MHz.

Shannon Basin Radio Club Challenge.

The Shannon Basin Radio club is running a one day Open, Fixed, Challenge for EI residence. This challenge is open to all licenced operators and short wave listeners, and will be held annually on the First Sunday of November. The purpose of the challenge is to encourage radio operators and short wave listeners to be active on the H.F bands.

The challenge will have three modes of operation, and the winner in each mode will be awarded with the following; The Lough Allen Shield will be awarded to the highest score in SSB. The Lough Ree Shield will be awarded to the highest score in CW (A1A). The Lough Derg Shield will be awarded to the highest score for SWL. The above winners will also receive a personal trophy.

To receive a copy of the rules for the above challenge, please send a stamped address envelope to the contest manager EI6HW, Noel Mulvihill, Hillquarter, Coosan, Athlone, Co. Westmeath or e-mail It is very important that persons intending to compete must send notification 10-days prior to the contest date, so get a copy of the rules early.

Items for inclusion in next weeks Radio News should be forwarded Mark Wall EI7IS. He can be contacted on 087-6302026. News can also be submitted via e-mail to for automatic forwarding to both the radio and printed news services.


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