Handiham World for April 18, 2022

Logo for Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute, part of Allina Health

Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute Handiham World E-Letter for the week of April 18, 2022

This is a free news and information update from the Courage Kenny Handiham Program, serving people with disabilities in amateur radio since 1967.

Our contact information is at the end.

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Welcome to Handiham World.

In this edition:

  • A note from the coordinator
  • News in Assistive Technology
  • From the Mailbag
  • Interview of the Week
  • Ham Radio in the News
  • A Dip in the Pool
  • Website Update
  • Equipment Connection
  • Help Needed
  • Check into our nets!
  • …And more!

A note from the coordinator…

The Handiham AllStar and DMR links are up and running! Feel free to use these to connect to the Handiham Conference and join in the daily Handiham Radio Club nets. We are so grateful to everyone involved in this project!

In August, from the 8th through the 14th, we will be taking time to celebrate the 55th Anniversary of the Handiham Program during a weeklong virtual event. We will get to hear from numerous people who have participated in the Handiham Program over the years, attend classes in amateur radio operating skills, and get on the air for a special Handiham 55th Anniversary QSO Party. We look forward to having everyone join us for this very special week!

Photo of Handiham Program 55th Anniversary logo.

On the weekend of Friday, April 29th through Sunday May 1st, we will hold a special event station honoring 55 years of serving people with disabilities in the amateur radio hobby. Last year, lots of contacts were made celebrating Handiham 54, and we hope that this year will be even bigger. Listen out for CQ Handiham 55 on phone and CW!

Are you planning to attend Dayton Hamvention this year? It’s been a long time since the last one was held in 2019! The Handiham Program will have a booth again, and we are looking forward to seeing everyone there from May 20 – 22. We will have several volunteers helping out, and attendees will have the opportunity to see demonstrations of accessible radio equipment throughout the event. We look forward to visiting with everyone at Hamvention, so be sure to stop by the Handiham booth.

Photo of Dayton Hamvention Tent Buildings.

The Extra Class is on week thirteen, the third week covering antennas and feed lines. It’s hard to believe that we are three-fourths of the way through this class! There is a lot to cover each week to get through all the material included in the Extra Class exam, and just reviewing all the questions covered so far takes a few hours now. If you are just getting started in the ham radio hobby, we will be running a two-semester virtual Technician class starting this fall. You can contact Pemdy for an application.

Cartoon of laptop with multiple people attending a virtual class on the screen.

The Intermediate Morse Code class is on week nine now, and the class is getting more challenging as we increased the code speed up to 11 words per minute last week. For this class, students work on improving their ability to copy and send, increasing their speed from around 5 words per minute to 13 words per minute. Students attend an interactive Zoom class once weekly, utilize practice recordings, and schedule one-on-one practice times with instructors. If this class sounds too advanced for you, the next virtual Basic Morse Code class is planned to start in September. You can reach out to Pemdy for an application if you are interested in joining us.

Photo of the Morse code key.

While we continue to work remotely, we still check our phone messages and return phone calls, and mail is picked up regularly. Of course, the best way to get in touch with us is via email.

Photo of 2 meter wavelength as guide to social distancing.

Along with the release of the new On the Air magazine, the magazine for beginner-to-intermediate ham radio operators, the ARRL is also doing a monthly podcast to take a deeper look at some of the topics and projects included in the magazine. The latest episode of the On the Air podcast (Episode 28) takes an in-depth look at digital multimeters. You can check it out at http://www.arrl.org/on-the-air-podcast.

If you are having trouble receiving your E-Letter, you can always go to https://handiham.org/wordpress1/weekly-e-letter/ to see the latest E-Letter. Additionally, you can go to https://handiham.org/audio/handiham.mp3 to listen to the current podcast. These links are updated each time a new E-Letter and podcast is released.

Pemdy and I will be working during our usual office hours this week. If you call the Handiham Program office, please leave a message, and we will return your call as soon as we are available. When you leave that message, don’t forget to leave your name, phone number, call sign if you have one, and the reason for your call. Also, if you send an email, please include your name along with your call sign, and the reason for your email to speed up the response time. As always, if you need to update anything like your contact information, call sign, license class, membership, or members only log-in information, you can email us at handiham@allina.com.

In the E-Letter, there is an article about the 2022 CSUN Assistive Technology Conference, another article about the importance of ham radio for NASA’s astronauts, and the next part of the 2021 Gratitude Gathering. Of course, you can also find the regular articles you see here each week.

Do you have a story to share about assistive technology or ham radio related activities? Please send your articles and stories via email to Lucinda.Moody@allina.com or by calling me at 612-775-2290.

News in Assistive Technology

CSUN 2022 AT Conference

Photo of CSUN 2022 AT conference logo.

For over 36 years, CSUN’s Assistive Technology Conference has hosted researchers, practitioners, educators, exhibitors, and more to gather and share knowledge, new innovations, and best practices to promote universal inclusion. The conference returned to in-person this year, and some exciting new assistive technology saw its debut during this event. To learn more about this AT conference, you can check out the following article at: https://www.afb.org/calendar/csun-assistive-technology-conference-2022.

You can also watch a video overview of CSUN 2022 at: https://youtu.be/2BBh1VUoKqU.

From the Mailbag

Photo of mail carrier with mail bag and letter.

Hi Everyone,

I am honored and excited to be the new net manager for the Handiham Radio Club nets. My goal is to have the net return to a seven-day morning net where we give more than just weather reports, like it was in the past. Currently, the net is a directed net during weekdays. Please join us for friendship, amateur radio talk, and expanding your knowledge.

I retired in 2010 after 45 years in the medical profession as a certified prosthetist/orthotist.

My amateur radio experience started when I was sixteen years old. When I received my driver’s license, I installed a mobile CB (Citizen Band) radio in my car to add to my home base CB station. My radios were tube radios, and my call sign was KPA 6462. Back in the 1960s, CB radios were quite the rage, and I was even a member of the CB Club.

In 1970, at the age of twenty-one, I joined the Palo Alto Police Department as a reserve police officer. I was with the department until 1982, when I moved to Monterey, California for my medical profession. My years with the department gave me great experience in communications.

Over the years as an adult, I was involved in yachting. This gave me maritime communication experience. My call sign was WXK4940.

In 2010, I received my General Class ham radio license. My call sign was KJ6RAV. I did not like the call sign, however, so I applied for a vanity call. My new callsign was K9AMO. The call sign has K9 for police dogs and AMO for the ammunition used by police. This fit with my experience as a reserve police officer.

My first ham radios were just like the CB days, a mobile radio in the car and a base station at home. My radios were VHF and UHF, and all communication went through local repeaters. I was not yet on the HF bands. Now, I am involved in DMR and HF.

I am a Net Control operator for the DMR Worldwide #91 Net. The net meets each Saturday morning at 1600 UTC and can last at least three hours. Our normal check-in count is about 500 stations. I am also a net control operator for my local Clovis Ham Club.

As I said in the beginning, my goal is to build the Handiham Net back to a daily net, and we are in need of net control stations. Even if you are just learning, the Handiham Radio Club nets are a great place to develop your on-air skills during check-ins or as a net control station. Please join whenever you can.


Barry McMills, K9AMO


Here is more info about the service animal hotline I mentioned in our call last night. Perhaps some of the info would be of interest to Handihams who have service dogs.

Advocates for Service Animal Partners Launches Hotline

What are the rights and responsibilities of service animal users in places of public accommodation? Are there circumstances under which a business is allowed to refuse access to an individual accompanied by a service animal? What is the best way to resolve issues that arise because of the choice to use a service animal? What remedies are available to those who feel their civil rights have been violated?

Most people are surprised to learn how frequently service animal handlers are turned away from businesses because of their service dog, a violation of both state and federal law.

Advocates for Service Animal Partners (ASAP), the only organization dedicated exclusively to supporting, protecting, and advancing the civil rights of disabled individuals who use service animals to mitigate their disability and live full, productive, and independent lives, has launched a one-of-a-kind new service. The ASAP Service animal Information and Resource Hotline allows service animal handlers and businesses alike the opportunity to speak with an advocate who is trained to answer questions about service animals and resolve access concerns as they occur. ASAP211 is available 24/7 by calling toll-free 855-ASAP211 (855-2727211).

We find that most access problems are the result of a lack of information, says ASAP’s President. This hotline is an excellent resource for service animal handlers and businesses alike during an active access issue.

According to the implementing regulations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a service animal is any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. Businesses and governmental agencies are required to modify their policies, practices, and procedures to allow an individual accompanied by a service dog the same access as all other patrons or visitors. The service animal must be under the direct control of the handler, be kept on a harness or leash unless a harness or leash interferes with the work the dog performs, and may not pose a direct threat to the health or safety of others. Thirty-seven states also have criminal laws prohibiting such discrimination.

Advocates for Service Animal Partners offers free webinars concerning service animals in housing, retail establishments, restaurants, hotels, medical facilities, taxicabs, and other places of public accommodation. ASAP also provides service animal policymaking services, implementation of standard operating procedures concerning service animals, and in-service training for business and governmental staff. For more information about these services, you can contact ASAP at 386-ASAP411 (386-2727411) or visit ServiceAnimals.info.

Interview of the Week

Last November, we held our second annual Gratitude Gathering, getting together to share what we are thankful for in the amateur radio hobby. Please join me for the next part of this interview.

Photo of arm in suit jacket with hand holding a large communications microphone.

AS: Hey, everyone, this is Kilo Alpha 3 Tango Tango Tango, Austin in Philadelphia. It’s great to be here. Yeah. Well, I’m thankful for a lot of things. Of course, as others have said, I’m thankful for Handiham. And I’m grateful for a local net that I run here Wednesdays at 8pm on the WM3PEN machine. If anyone’s in the Philadelphia area, stop on by.

AS: And I was thinking about it, you know, of course, having an apartment QRP station, I feel grateful every time I make a contact. It’s like that actually worked, like, oh this actually worked. And I think I’m really grateful for all the innovation that’s going on. An example is that my Alpha Loop, the magnetic loop that I have here, does 80 through 10 meters, which is amazing enough, and they released over the summer an upgrade to add VHF support–6 meters, 2 meters, 70 centimeters, and they just released–I just got it today–a DX mast to change the takeoff angle to lower takeoff angle to get more DX. So, that’s an example. It’s just all the innovation especially for, of course, hams with disabilities and hams living in apartments and in restricted areas. I think it’s wonderful to see the community responding to that clearly. So, and CW forever!

LM: Thanks, Austin. And, yeah, it’s neat being in the second year of our Morse code classes, you know, we’re running on basic Morse code in the fall and the intermediate Morse code class in the winter/spring session. And it’s neat to see how many people continue to love Morse code, yourself among them.

AS: Yeah, that’s great. Yeah. Well, bring them on the novice portion of 40 meters or something. We’ll have a chat.

LM: Yeah, yeah. You know, we should get you to join in on that class sometime. You could share a lot of your experiences. That would be really cool, too.

AS: Yeah. And it’s, when they’re ready, start doing some code, practice, start having some practice QSOs or something. Yeah, totally. Yeah. Let me know.

LM: Yeah, yeah. There’s a couple instructors here listening right now. So, I’m sure they’ll be in touch. So, thanks so much for coming along and joining us this afternoon. Next up, let’s go to Susan League. Go ahead.

SL: Yes, this is N0PTS.

LM: And what are you thankful for today?

SL: Everything. Friends, ham radio, the whole gambit.

LM: All right, I like it. Are you still staying active on ham radio?

SL: I have to find my radio. It’s here in the care center, but I’ll have to locate it.

LM: Okay.

SL: Rehab, you know?

LM: Yeah, you’re going to have to find it before we do that next in-person event so you can be ready.

SL: Yeah, when is it that in-person?

LM: Well, we’re not sure right now because of the pandemic. We’re just not certain when we’ll be able to do it. But as soon as we’re able to, we’re going to do it.

SL: Oh, great. Keep us in the loop, please.

LM: Oh, yeah. You’ll be hearing about it. It takes about a year to plan one of those events. So, you’ll know.

SL: Well, thank you.

LM: Yeah. Well, thanks so much for joining us today. And we’ll look forward to talking to you. Hopefully, you’ll be able to join us in the next one of these and, like I said, next time we do something in person as well. Next up here, let’s go to Johnny. Go ahead.

JO: All righty. Well, we’ll say good afternoon to everybody and happy Thanksgiving weekend and all that goes with it. And for the 2 station there in New York that went to school with Bob Gunderson, you will probably recall one of Bob Gunderson’s famous achievements. And Betsy Dome and her twin sister, Barb, I call them the Gunderson twins because they I think were his first pupils there. They will tell you how he took the gym floor at the school and wired it for deaf blind usage. And he wrote an article about it in the Braille Technical Press. It is one of the most classic features that, you name it, and he helped make everything possible.

JO: And another thing to be thankful for is as of Tuesday morning, November 16th, at 10:15 in the morning, I have been here in Minnesota for 29 years. And the first job I had was with Handihams, and I owe a great deal to Maureen Pranghofer. You get me started on her–she helped me get my Extra, and this was back in 1990. And we would throw tapes back and forth at each other and talk on the phone and then I got my Extra at the end of ’90. And I was first licensed in May of ’67. And that was a great thrill for me. I got both my Novice and Tech. I never did use the Novice by the way. And I had the Tech until well, I guess you could say ’76. I had taken the General theory in ’74 and passed it. I didn’t quite meet the code. So, I came back to the FCC. And this was when they were still doing live things nationwide and in downtown Detroit. So, I took the code test at 13 words and passed it which gave me the automatic General, and then I decided to go for the Advanced, which I got. And then in the summer of 90, I got my Extra.

JO: And not only do I have a great deal of thanks to Maureen, but also Tom Miller, N0UE, who used to be AA0UU. And to this day, we still call him UU. He’s helped me with a lot of the technical stuff and a lot of the other people. And it was through Handihams that indirectly helped me get–once I got my Extra, I was able to take the commercial tests and got them. And for several years before I came up here I was in Air Force MARS. And I feel kind of left out at the moment because I can’t really get on the air, especially on HF. I do have the TMV71a and the D74, the handheld with the D-STAR and all, but I wish I were more active. And I can’t wait until we get back to doing live, in-person activities. So, anyway, I can go on and on, but I’ve probably taken up too much time and you know how that goes. But I do want to thank everybody. Okay, that is it. And I’m sure I’ve forgotten a lot of things, but I’ve taken to too long, and again, I have thoroughly enjoyed it. 54 years–it’ll be 55 next year that I’ve been licensed. So anyway, thank you to one at all. And Lucinda, back over to you.

LM: Thanks Johnny and so you share a birthday with the Handiham Program then because the Handiham Program’s coming up to 55 as well. So, there you go. You share a ham radio birthday.

Stay tuned for the next part of this interview airing in the next issue of Handiham World.

Ham Radio in the News

NASA, Ham Radio, and the Moon

Photo of ARISS logo.

NASA is working to ramp up preparations for the next manned moon missions, planned for the summer of 2025. Astronaut Douglas Wheelock got his ham license shortly before going to the International Space Station (ISS). He found ham radio to be a lifesaver during his time there as he struggled with missing his home planet. To combat his loneliness during the long mission, he turned to ham radio. Now, he is recruiting people to help in returning to the moon. “Space is still a frontier ripe for exploring, and that’s what we’re all about at NASA.” To read the complete article, go to: https://www.wnep.com/article/weather/skywatch-16/skywatch-16-nasa-ham-radio-and-the-moon-murgas-university-of-scranton-wheelock/523-8cb4c109-42b1-4bbc-adb5-8e45b8277057.

A Dip in the Pool

drawing of person studying

It’s time to test our knowledge by taking a dip in the question pool…

Let’s go to the General Class pool this week to a question about solar panels.

G4E10 What is the reason that a series diode is connected between a solar panel and a storage battery that is being charged by the panel?

A. The diode serves to regulate the charging voltage to prevent overcharge.
B. The diode prevents self-discharge of the battery through the panel during times of low or no illumination.
C. The diode limits the current flowing from the panel to a safe value.
D. The diode greatly increases the efficiency during times of high illumination.

It’s good practice to monitor solar power charging using a small ammeter in series with the red lead. You will see how even a small shadow will decrease output. If, however, you notice that your battery is discharging at night, you likely need to add a series diode to prevent the panel from slightly discharging your battery. While newer solar panels have these diodes built in, older panels do need that reverse current diode to prevent battery discharge. This makes answer B the correct choice.

Website Update

Photo of the words website update with construction equipment working on the letters.

Here are the latest updates on the Handiham.org website. If you have any feedback about the website, I would love to hear from you. If you are a current member and your credentials are not allowing you to login to the site, please contact Pemdy for assistance at handiham@allina.com or 612-775-2291.

Equipment Connection

Photo of Icom IC-7200 with LDG auto-tuner and power supply.

Equipment connections are happening, and the list is open! If you have a request for the Equipment Connection, contact me, leaving your name and phone number. I will call you to discuss your request. Please note that it may take several days for a return call due to all the other things going on in the Handiham Program. If you don’t hear back from me after two weeks, you may contact me a second time. Additionally, if you have received any equipment from the Handiham Program during the last 12 months, you will automatically be placed at the bottom of the list so that others can also participate in the Equipment Connection.

Many thanks to the numerous people who have offered equipment for Handiham Members. If you have equipment that you would like to donate to a Handiham Program member, please email Lucinda at Lucinda.Moody@allina.com or call 1-612-775-2290.

Help Needed

Photo of note with the words help needed written on it.

The Handiham Program needs contributors to Handiham World. Do you have a particular interest in amateur radio that you would like to share with others? Maybe you have a particular mode or band you like to operate and have learned a lot about. Or maybe you have some great stories to share from your experiences in the amateur radio hobby. Put your writing skills to work for Handiham World by sending your submissions to: Lucinda.Moody@allina.com.

We are looking for instructors for both operating skills and licensing classes. A background in teaching is not required. We have veteran instructors who are willing to mentor new teachers. Classes take place during the fall and spring semesters via Zoom. We have a group of instructors for each class, so you do not have to be available during every week of the semester. If you are interested in helping, please contact Lucinda.

We are always looking for more readers, including some with a background in teaching in STEM related fields, especially if you have also worked with students requiring accommodations. We also need some readers with a background in teaching in STEM related fields, especially if you have also worked with students requiring accommodations. This volunteer position requires you to use your own equipment to record, however, we will provide the reading materials. If you or someone you know would like to try reading material for the members only section, please contact me for more information on how to submit a demo recording.

We need help updating our available resources for members. If you are blind and enjoy using your ham radio or assistive technology related devices, your assistance is especially needed. It would be a big help to your fellow Handiham Members if you would record a tutorial or product review. These need to be sent in Mp3 format, and the Handiham Program reserves the right to edit the recordings as needed before publishing in the Members Only section of the Handiham.org website. Please contact me at Lucinda.Moody@allina.com or 612-775-2290 if you have any questions.

Check into our Handiham nets… Everyone is welcome!

How to find the Handiham Net:

  • The Handiham EchoLink conference is 494492. Connect via your iPhone, Android phone, PC, or on a connected simplex node or repeater system in your area.
  • The Handiham DMR Talkgroup on Brandmeister is 31990. On AllStar, it is available at node 47367.
  • The Handiham Net will be on the air daily. If there is no net control station on any scheduled net day, we will have a round table on the air get-together.

Cartoon multicolored stick man family holding hands, one wheelchair user among them.

Our daily Echolink net continues to operate for anyone and everyone who wishes to participate at 11:00 hours CDT (Noon Eastern and 09:00 Pacific), as well as Wednesday evenings at 19:00 hours CDT (7 PM). If you calculate GMT, the time difference is that GMT is five hours ahead of Minnesota time during the summer.

Linda, N7HVF, poses a trivia question in the first half of the Wednesday evening session, so check in early if you want to take a guess. The answer to the trivia question is generally given shortly after the half-hour mark. A big THANK YOU goes out to all of our net control stations and to Barry, K9AMO, our net manager.


  • You can pay your Handiham dues and certain other program fees on line. Simply follow the link to our secure payment site, then enter your information and submit the payment.

    • Handiham annual membership dues are $15.00. The lifetime membership rate is $150.00.
    • If you want to donate to the Handiham Program, please use our donation website. The instructions are at the following link:
  • As always, while our other services require that you have a current Handiham Program membership, you do not have to be a member to receive the Handiham World E-Letter.

How to contact us

There are several ways to reach us.

Postal Mail:

Courage Kenny Handiham Program
3915 Golden Valley Road MR 78446
Golden Valley, MN 55422

E-Mail: handiham@allina.com

Preferred telephone: 1-612-775-2291
Toll-Free telephone: 1-866-HANDIHAM (1-866-426-3442)

Note: Tuesdays through Thursdays between 9:00 AM and 3:00 PM United States Central Time are the best times to contact us.

You may also call Handiham Program Coordinator Lucinda Moody, AB8WF, at: 612-775-2290.

73, and I hope to hear you on the air soon!

For Handiham World, this is Lucinda Moody, AB8WF

Handiham World is a compilation of assistive technology, operating skills, and Handiham Program news. It is published as a bi-weekly podcast and a brief update is released on the opposite weeks. Handiham World is available to everyone free of charge. Please email handiham@allina.com for changes of address, unsubscribes, etc. and include both your old and new email address.