Last revised - October 2013
Provide a constructive environment for members and guests to actively participate in Amateur Radio related activities and projects. This plan is intended to outline the Club's future plans, and to be used as a guide when planning and formulating budgets.
This is a living document, where the intent is for members to have input into what they want from their Club.
Mobile communications facility
The caravan is a long term project, with work done solely by volunteer labour and small amounts of Club funds. The caravan fitout shall be completed using funds obtained from a Gambling Comunity Benefit grant. Where the intent of the fitout is to provide communications capability across a range of services, supporting Local Govt and State emergency service organisations. The caravan when fully fitted out will also be an excellent promotional vehicle for the Club and Amateur Radio hobby.
Club station enhancements
The Club Station (Radio Shack) should be the showcase of the Club, demonstrating as many aspects of the hobby as possible. At minimum the Club should have SSB and CW capability from 160m to 23cm, where at the moment the station is HF SSB, 2m FM and DStar, APRS, analogue ATV, CB, Marine, SES and HF land mobile. Funding for the Club Station is to be derived from grants that are available to the club via various sources.
Long term plan is to ensure there is the antenna systems in place to gain the best possible capability. The Club Station should be active each Monday evening and Wednesday morning to encourage use of the VK4RC callsign, and to promote the Club to Amateurs who may be listening. Noting that the ATV broadcast attracts up to 200 viewers, it should be encourage to turn on the camera and transmitter for all activities.
As the Club grows, space for meetings, training, workbenches, test equipment, caravan accommodation and gear storage needs to be optimised. The long term strategy shall be to aply for a lease change to occupy more land, allowing for an extension to be built. Funds for the extension shall be sourced from Gambling Community Benefit Funds. The process to alter the land holding is unknown at this stage, hence a working group needs to be formed to establish:
1. Proposed renovations,
2. Lease application,
3. Long term viability,
5. Building project.
It should be well understood that without a means to welcome new entrants to the hobby, the number of licenses will shrink. The Executive is to provide moral and financial support to the training and assessment volunteers, and actively promote this capability to the wider community.
A yearly event to provide a fundraising vehicle for the Club, intended for operational funding. Initially to be hosted at the St Michaels School, The Abbey, Caboolture in between BARCfest (May) Sunfest (September) and GCARS (November), and away from any other major Amateur Radio event such as JOTA and the John Moyle Field Day.
Continued participation in field days (generally located at Murrembong) should be encouraged using Club owned and members equipment. In the past the Club has been successful and gone to great lengths to setup a QRO all band HF station for the John Moyle Field Day (JMFD).
The technical challenges of setting up 400W stations in close proximity is good training in filtering techniques, antenna placement and operator ability. Noting the intent of field days is to practice setting up a field station "off the grid" in case of emergencies. The contest is merely a means to justify the effort where there is no emergency.
The Club should not spend club funds on capital acquistions to support one day a year, and the members are encouraged to give their gear a go while balancing their concerns of possible damage to their equipment. It is not seen to be prudent for the Club to own 5 x contest grade radios, 5 x amplifiers and 5 x QRO tuners to be used for one day in the year.
There is an increased interest in VHF/UHF and microwave operations, it is expected that the Club should attempt to participate in the WIA VHF/UHF field days as much as practical, as well as JMFD and Remembrance Day.
An excellent weekend that benefits the Club and the Scouts/Guides that visit the activity base. The fox hunting and kit building prove to be the most popular bases for the young people, while the old faithful Morse Code, HF, Echolink, DStar and IRLP setups enable contacts throughout the world. ATV was introduced in 2012 and was well received by the participants. It should be noted that the Club has assessed many new licenses and new Club members as a direct result of being at Murrembong each year.
Tech talks are the life blood of this Club, every effort should be made by the Executive to ensure there is an interesting and informative session presented every Monday of the month, without fail.
Fox hunts conducted every fourth Monday evening provide a fun activity for members of all ages, and the side benefit is the technique of locating a ELT beacon is practised.
Wednesday mornings, colloquially known as the "retired crowd", an important outlet for the retired members who may not be able to have a home station and who would be looking for fellowship ala the "Mens Shed" movement.
The wednesday group is also encouraged to participate in a monthly call around, thereby utilising the radio room equipment and the VK4RC callsign.
Proposed Project Schedule
Repeater linking - 6m and 2m
New front tower, tribander relocated, 6 metre beam relocated - description here
Drawings for planned extensions
Extension costings obtained
Grant applications for kitchen ceiling and external signage
Gambling grant applications for caravan project
Caravan project money obtained, caravan fitout commenced
Begin development application / negotiations with Council
Grant application submitted for extensions
Satellite antenna system
Digital ATV upgrade
EME station established