Band Conditions

30 December 2018

COMINT - What I Program In My Radios

  • Local FD.
  • Local PD.
  • 2 local state police troops (QTH is on the border between 2 troop boundaries).
  • Immediate surrounding PDs.
  • FD dispatch channels out to 10 miles from QTH location.
  • EnCon/DEP.
  • US Army Corps of Engineers (several USACE dams nearby).
  • Regional mutual-aid and interoperability channels.
  • Immediate ARTCC and major airport (within 30 miles) app/dep control aircraft frequencies.
  • Local RR frequencies.
  • AmRRON CH3 frequencies.
  • Common amateur radio simplex frequencies (nationwide and local).
Two scanners are used: one P25/trunked and one analog. Since immediate local frequencies are all analog and of primary interest, analog scanner covers those. P25/trunked scanner covers P25 and trunked system users and secondary interest users. Additionally, a NOAA "all hazards" radio remains on in stand-by mode, a 2 meter base station remains on local VHF/UHF repeater network frequency, and a 6m SSB radio on 50.125 MHz.

29 December 2018

Getting Information When The Shit Hits The Fan

Via a FB group:



The story in question is here: https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/27/us/ny-fires-con-ed-power-plant/index.html.

If you're living in the Five Boroughs, or nearby counties like Nassau or Westchester, you're going to want as much advance warning when something evacuation-worthy happens.

To answer the question, what I would have done was listen to NYPD, FDNY, and Con-Ed on the scanner to see what happened, and then decide on a course of action.

The New York Metropolitan area has a lot of scanner enthusiasts, and the electronic order of battle has been mapped out pretty well down there.

In only one week, I'll be hosting my first class of the new year, a Basic Grid-Down/Down-Grid Communications, Communications Monitoring, and Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Class in Watertown, CT. Those of you who live in the city can take the Waterbury Branch of the MTA Metro-North New Haven line up to Waterbury station, and get a ride from there. There is a train that leaves GCT on Sunday at 0702 and arrives at 0942, or you can come up the night before and get a hotel. If you're interested in setting up information collection and alternative communications systems, this is the novice-level class to take. Then you won't be wondering when you hear "an explosion" and see an odd glow in the sky.

24 December 2018

Recovery - Cover For Staus - Cover For Action

The best way to approach self-reliance in everyday life seems to be slightly less serious, more easygoing: the hobbyist's approach. You can indulge it longer without tiring of it, so you tend to learn more. You
also don't worry your friends so much; I mean, of course, those improvident right-hearted, wrong-headed friends who think your personal pilot-light has gone out because you intend to affect your own
destiny. When you approach self-reliance as a hobby, somehow it worries the dimwits less while teaching you more.

- Dean Ing, The Chernobyl Syndrome
If you're reading this blog, I can safely assume you have some interest in the more technical aspects of survivalism. If you are playing with radio as a hobby, especially Amateur Radio, GMRS, or CB, you are learning electronics, basic mechanical (antenna and go-kit assembly), computer science, and maybe alternative power generation.  That actually makes you a little more educated in practical aspects of things than the average person.  I speak from from over 30 years of experience as a techie both professionally and as a hobbyist.

What this means is that when things start going wrong, or we have the reset, you're going to be the person people will be coming to for getting things fixed or running again. You'll be the one making alcohol, or biodiesel, or electrical generators cobbled together with car alternators and lawn-mover engines running on wood gas. You'll be the local communications company providing local infrastructure and a connection to the outside world, or technical support for the militia's ISR capability.  Even today, you're probably the person who gets phone calls when one of your friends or family members is having computer trouble.

Here are book links, both downloadable and off Amazon, for some items that may interest you.

https://archive.org/details/chernobylsyndrom00ingd - Dean Ing's The Chernobyl Syndrome is one of my favorite prepping books.  My first copy was a present from a friend, which got lost in a move. A subsequent copy was purchased on Amazon for $7. Now they're up to $50 on Amazon. In my opinion that's overpriced, but fortunately you can download it with the link I shared.

https://www.motherearthnews.com/renewable-energy/make-your-own-fuel-zmaz10amzraw?fbclid=IwAR0bbz9_LSZsjox19lNUV6KThTuE5HKo9RJpU8_P5__umJsMppbhTYcrn_Q - A good page on alcohol fuel basics

https://www.cavemanchemistry.com/ - Caveman Chemistry, by Kevin Dunn, is one the best DIY hands-on chemistry books out there.


http://www.driveonwood.com/ - Information on wood gas.

https://archive.org/details/KurtSaxonSurvivorVol.2 - Kurt Saxon's Survivor book series. For all his issues, Kurt was the guy who started the whole survivalist movement. The Survivor originally started out as a magazine, and later compiled into a four book series. The Survivor consisted mostly of reprints from 19th and early-mid 20th century DIY books and periodicals, and some reader-contributed material. Kurt's stuff is out of print now, and used copies cost way too much on Amazon, but you can download them off Archive.org.


http://the-knowledge.org/en-gb/ - The Knowledge, by Louis Dartnell, is one of the better books of recent publication on how to rebuild things after the reset occurs.


https://www.foxfire.org/- The classic. 'Nuff said.

Get a small library together, assemble a small lab/workshop in the corner of your basement or wherever. Scrounge up materials. Experiment. Work on stuff. Become ready for the Great American Reset and Renaissance.

Commo Chapter FM 31-20

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ihDMRj1K4v7Pg038rOZlq30YPB6DS2Hk/view?usp=sharing


Connecticut Class Email Sent

An email has been sent to everyone who signed up for the class on January 6th. If you haven't received it, please let me know - sparks31wyo@gmail.com.

Information Collection and Communications Systems Training

Sparks31 returns to New England.
We are only two weeks away The Basic Grid-Down/Down-Grid Communications, Communications Monitoring, and Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Class in Watertown, CT. This is my first in a whole schedule of classes for 2019, which you can view at https://www.sparks31.com/p/2019-classes.html. There are still slots available for the January 6th, 2019 class, and you can enroll via https://squareup.com/store/sparks31 for this or any other 2019 class. I have classes scheduled for Washington (state), Utah, Colorado, Massachusetts, and Virginia. Additionally, you and your organization can sponsor a class for a flat group rate. Price varies according to travel distance, but is generally around $2000. Email me via sparks31wyo@gmail.com for a quote.

Matters are not getting any better in this country, and you're not going to be voting your way out of this.  As the status quo slowly declines further into dystopia, the need to prepare for the new normal will increase and become increasingly difficult. Having lived on both sides of the country, I can tell you from direct experience that no place will be immune from the effects of what's to come. One thing that you will need, as much as guns and butter, are information gathering and communications networks.

What professionals call SIGINT (Signals Intelligence) and COMINT (Communications Intelligence) is actually the science and technique of monitoring the airwaves for information. This is useful to individuals and small groups because it is a relatively easy way to remotely and safely find out what's going on in the world around you. It is also shows vulnerabilities that you should be aware of when putting together your own communications networks.


Basic Grid-Down/Down-Grid Communications, Communications Monitoring, and Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Class
January 6th, 2019, 0800-1800 EST
Watertown, CT
This is a one-day class that covers all the basics you need to set up your monitoring post, collect signals intelligence (SIGINT), get on the air with amateur radio and personal communications services (FRS, GMRS, MURS, CB, Part 15), and establish communications networks and interoperability with other like-minded individuals.

Topics of instruction include the following:
  • Learning about Electronic Communications - A Primer
  • Communications Monitoring HF-to-UHF
  • Intelligence versus Information
    • Intelligence Requirements
  • SIGINT - Signals Intelligence
  • Listening Posts and SIGINT Operations
  • Communications Services
    • Amateur Radio
    • Part 95 & 15 (license-free or "license by rule" services)
  • Communications Networks
    • Interoperability - What it is, and how to make it work.
  •  Increasing System Performance
    • Antennas
  • Grid-Down versus Down-Grid Realities
  • Basic Crypto Systems and When It Is Legal to Use Them
  • Alternatives to Radio Communications
Cost for this class is $100. Please enroll via our storefront at https://squareup.com/store/sparks31/.
See you in class!

22 December 2018

Upgrading From Your Baofeng - Ham Radio Edition

OK.

Now let's assume that everyone in your group/tribe/whatever is all on board with getting their Amateur Radio License (Technician class or better), or you're a lone wolf with your ham ticket, and you want to upgrade from that Baofeng. What's the recommendation?

My personal preference is towards Icom or Yaesu, but Kenwood and Alinco are also good brands.  Most prepper/threeper-type hams who are serious about quality gear have gotten the Yaesu FT-60.

This is a rugged proven radio that's been around for a while, and I haven't heard any complaints about them. You would do well with this radio. If you wanted to run digital voice for a little extra privacy, go with the FT-70DR.
For VHF/UHF mobile or handheld use, just about any model made by Yaesu or Icom would be a good choice. At present, an older version of this model is currently being used here as a mobile/transportable radio:
It fit just fine in a Tac-Comm carrier, and is ready to go when needed.

Upgrading From Your Baofeng - Part 15/95 Edition

So you spent the $20 on a Baofeng, and it didn't totally turn you off from radio communications. Now it's time to sell that extra M4orgery and upgrade your personal comms, right?

Wrong. You don't have personal comms. If you have a need for comms, then you have a group, tribe, or family that you need to communicate with. That means you need to select something that not only works at the required distance, but can also be used by everyone.  That even includes your dear Aunt Marge, who is a seamstress and herbalist par extraordinaire, but couldn't get her VCR to stop flashing "12:00" if her life depended on it.  You need effective communications at the Basic Common Tasks Level, which would mean nothing more complicated than a PRC-77.

I've been an Amateur Radio operator for 35 years, and my wife is also one. Yet, 9/10 times when we need to talk around property or down the road, we're grabbing these:

Incidentally, most of the time we're on Channel 3. They are cheap, uncomplicated, and simply work. Good for about a 1/2 mile to a mile under most conditions.  No privacy to speak of whatsoever, but I don't care for most normal applications.  If you want better, then you have to upgrade by an order of (the?) magnitude.

My recommendation for everyone who needs private intra-group communications, and doesn't want to get a ham license or have interoperability with others, is to get Motorola DTR-650s. They have an honest 2 mile range, run frequency hopping spread spectrum with digital voice modulation, and operate on the 902-928 MHz. Part 15/ISM band where they will hide among the SCADAs, AVI systems, and other stuff. Once programmed up with private talk-groups (channels), they are about as close as you can get to having your own SINCGARS. These radios are designed for technically-ignorant end-users, and have two nice features the control freak in you would definitely appreciate: stun and remote activate. If a radio gets stolen you can either remotely disable it or remotely turn it on and listen to what's being said in its vicinity.

Maybe that's a little extreme for you, and you want something better than the Baofeng, but still license-free and with some interoperability. Motorola still has a solution for you.

The RMM2050 is a legal (type-accepted), milspec, MURS radio.  You've probably already been on these frequencies with your Baofeng, so you know what to expect. The Motorola is the top of the line, but there's another model for those of you on a budget that's almost as good.

These are made by the same company that does those "Alert Zone 1" intrusion detectors that are also on MURS.
  • All of these radios are license free. 
  • All of them have a simple user interface that anyone can learn. 
  • All of them are suitably rugged for field use.

21 December 2018

Last Minute Gift Ideas



The 1N34A diode is what you use to make crystal radio sets. A pack of 20 should last you a while.  Information on building this ultimate prepper receiver is available online, but for those of you who like their info in hardcopy form, here is the book you want:

19 December 2018

Fake News and Deplatforming

Fake News and deplatforming are big topics these days.

Most of what passes for "news" from the establishment mass media machine is fake news. Over the past few days I have watched and listened to the news channels during breaks at the day job, and about one percent was applicable to me at a tactical level: traffic and weather. Another one percent had some strategic level value, bit will require more research as a 30 second sound part imparts very little information. The same percentage likely applies to you, but what do you need to know and how do you get it? That's when Intelligence Preparation of the Neighborhood, OSINT, and SIGINT comes into play. Do you know how to do IPN, collect OSINT and SIGINT, and do some rudimentary analysis?  

I have always maintained since I first created this blog that you should never trust anyone else's infrastructure. Deplatforming is the reason why, and it is not limited to Internet. I have seen repeaters and repeater networks go down due to natural disasters, pissed-off repeater owners, and simply from geriatric repeater owners dying and having no one to take the machine over. That 5 watt HT is great when you have a local repeater to get into. When the repeater goes away, you have to switch to simplex. Do you have the knowledge and equipment to set up your own comms?

If the Internet goes down tomorrow, would you be able to collect news and information, and establish secure communications links with you tribe?

I have a full line of classes scheduled for 2019 that can help you out, and in 2 1/2 weeks will be holding my first class of the new year in Watertown, CT. Cost of the class is only $100, and you can enroll online.

Sparks31 returns to New England.
Basic Grid-Down/Down-Grid Communications, Communications Monitoring, and Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Class
January 6th, 2019, 0800-1800 EST
Watertown, CT
This is a one-day class that covers all the basics you need to set up your monitoring post, collect signals intelligence (SIGINT), get on the air with amateur radio and personal communications services (FRS, GMRS, MURS, CB, Part 15), and establish communications networks and interoperability with other like-minded individuals.

Topics of instruction include the following:
  • Learning about Electronic Communications - A Primer
  • Communications Monitoring HF-to-UHF
  • Intelligence versus Information
    • Intelligence Requirements
  • SIGINT - Signals Intelligence
  • Listening Posts and SIGINT Operations
  • Communications Services
    • Amateur Radio
    • Part 95 & 15 (license-free or "license by rule" services)
  • Communications Networks
    • Interoperability - What it is, and how to make it work.
  •  Increasing System Performance
    • Antennas
  • Grid-Down versus Down-Grid Realities
  • Basic Crypto Systems and When It Is Legal to Use Them
  • Alternatives to Radio Communications
Cost for this class is $100. Please enroll via our storefront at https://squareup.com/store/sparks31/.
See you in class!

16 December 2018

Indicator Frequencies

Via a suggestion from my friend "GDJ". Here is a list of common indicator frequencies. They are FCC-allocated for public safety intersystem, interoperability, or mutual-aid use. They are usually quiet until something big (involving multiple juristictions) happens. That's what makes them indicator frequencies.  Most of the time they will be analog FM, which means any old flea market special police scanner can be tasked with monitoring them.
While these are the official FCC allocated frequencies for this purpose, that doesn't necessarily mean a region will be using them. Do your research.

Indicator Frequency List

39.46 – Police Intersystem
39.48 – Fire Intersystem
45.86 – Police Intersystem
45.88 – Fire Intersystem
121.500 – Aeronautical “Guard” (AM)
154.2650 - Fire Intersystem
154.2800 - Fire Intersystem
154.2950 - Fire Intersystem
155.1600 – Search and Rescue Common
155.3400 - EMS Mutual Aid
155.4750 - Law Enforcement Mutual Aid
155.7525 - National Interoperability Calling
453.2125 – National Interoperability Calling
851.0125 – Mutual-Aid Calling

14 December 2018

Communications Networks and a Roaming Beagle

Our beagle got lose yesterday.  I had just finished working on something for the upcoming classes, and looked out the window to see her cross the front yard and start walking up the road. I grab two HTs, run outside, hand one to my wife with an explanation, and start after the dog. After about 20 minutes of no success, we post up an escaped dog message on one of the "[our_town] talks" FB message boards.  One of our fellow residents points us to a recent (about 10 minutes old) post on another town talk FB group from a good Samaritan who found our dog. A few text messages later, and we're driving down the road to get our roaming mutt back.

Communications networks need participants to work.  While FRS was good for two people coordinating a search for a wandering dog, I could call out a request on any channel until I was blue in the face, and the chances (at present) of getting a reply would be minimal at best. A post to the right FB group however, and we had our dog back in an hour, thanks to two people we didn't know, but were community-minded nevertheless. FB is far from perfect, however.  While it has extensive community participation, and is easy to join, it runs on privately-owned third-party equipment, and on an infrastructure that is known to suffer localized failures during a disaster. The solution is to generate increased local participation on a resilient peer-to-peer infrastructure. Fortunately, someone has already started such a thing.
AmRRON/TAPRN has established a system for establishing local communications networks called the CH3 Project. It uses five readily-available radio services. Three require no license (MURS, CB, FRS), one requires a license obtainable by only paying a nominal fee (GMRS), and the other rerquires the entry-level Technician class Amateur Radio License (146.420 MHz. in the 2 meter ham band). Certain locations have already established nets, and there is nothing stopping you and your group from establishing on in your area.

11 December 2018

Watching The Skies

 
I was outside earlier, and heard an aircraft fly overhead. This is a normal occurrence around here because we live right on top of and next to a few air traffic lanes. How about you? Do you know where your local air traffic lanes are located, and what frequencies they use for communications? This information is important as a change in air traffic, determined by the change in communications level and tempo, may be an indicator, depending on what you're looking for.

Skyvector has online aeronautical sectional and enroute charts that will show you your local air traffic lanes and the communications frequencies used with them.  When used with ADS-B ELINT, you get a pretty interesting picture of what's going on above you.

09 December 2018

Brevity Codes

http://www.angelfire.com/va3/navy_mars/ACP131.pdf

Useful reference.

LLVI - Low Level Voice Intercept

That intercept operator from the 513th MI Brigade is using an AOR AR8200. A good choice for a wideband portable if you can afford it. Considering what some of you spend on an M4orgery that won't see half the action a communications receiver in the hands of a competent operative will see, the AOR is a bargain. However, now that events have gone to a slow boil in the US, and that this is a come-as-you-are party, you just have to run what you brung.

Low-Level Voice Intercept (LLVI) is exactly what what the name implies. It's performing point and sector searches for voice communications, and something scanner hobbyists have been doing for decades. Even if all you have is a cheap Chinese HT, you can still run LLVI as it receives the VHF-high and UHF land mobile bands just fine. I've actually had students in previous classes do that, and they managed just fine.

Here are some examples of less-expensive gear you'd use for LLVI. The receiver on the left is a Whistler WS1040. No surprises there. It covers all the necessary bands, does P25 Phase I, trunking, and has Spectrum Sweeper. To the right is an Alinco dual-band (2m/440) HT that has some extended receive coverage up to ~900 MHz. They both have 1/8" audio jacks for plugging in headphones. I run them right into my amplified shooting earmuffs that conveniently have a 1/8" audio jack input. It serves both to keep the noise level down at a field LP, and let you hear what's going on around you. A notebook for logging and keeping useful reference material handy. Spare batteries, writing instrument, and something to hold it all that I found at a local army/navy store.

Go visit Radioreference.com to get frequency data for your point and sector searches, use online mapping will show you places that are located above your average terrain for listening. Gear up, take a quick hike, do some listening, and enjoy the view.

That's all there is to it.

08 December 2018

Connecticut Commo Class


Just a reminder that we are one month out from the Basic Grid-Down/Down-Grid Communications, Communications Monitoring, and Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Class on January 6th. in Watertown, CT.


Sparks31 returns to New England.
Basic Grid-Down/Down-Grid Communications, Communications Monitoring, and Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Class
January 6th, 2019, 0800-1800 EST
Watertown, CT
Signals intelligence (SIGINT) is intelligence-gathering by interception of signals, whether communications between people (communications intelligence—abbreviated to COMINT) or from electronic signals not directly used in communication (electronic intelligence—abbreviated to ELINT). Signals intelligence is a subset of intelligence collection management.

This is a one-day class that covers all the basics you need to set up your monitoring post, collect signals intelligence (SIGINT), get on the air with amateur radio and personal communications services (FRS, GMRS, MURS, CB, Part 15), and establish communications networks and interoperability with other like-minded individuals.

Topics of instruction include the following:
  • Learning about Electronic Communications - A Primer
  • Communications Monitoring HF-to-UHF
  • Intelligence versus Information
    • Intelligence Requirements
  • SIGINT - Signals Intelligence
  • Listening Posts and SIGINT Operations
  • Communications Services
    • Amateur Radio
    • Part 95 & 15 (license-free or "license by rule" services)
  • Communications Networks
    • Interoperability - What it is, and how to make it work.
  •  Increasing System Performance
    • Antennas
  • Grid-Down versus Down-Grid Realities
  • Basic Crypto Systems and When It Is Legal to Use Them
  • Alternatives to Radio Communications
Cost for this class is $100. Please enroll via our storefront at https://squareup.com/store/sparks31/.
See you in class!

MONEX AAR

I would like to thank everyone who has submitted their reports so far.  There is
still plenty of time for the rest of you to submit yours. Bonus points to those of you who used the contact form on the right with a Mailinator return address. That shows you've been paying attention.

In the meantime, we have this wonderful article from the Atlantic:
https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2019/01/presidential-emergency-powers/576418/

It sure sucks when someone you don't like is in charge, doesn't it?

07 December 2018

MONEX End

The MONEX has ended. Please submit your logs at your earliest convenience. Logs must be submitted NLT than 15DEC2018 - 0000 UTC to qualify for class drawing.

04 December 2018

Stuff

Was at the local Walmart this evening. Found the following items of interest.

12V 7.5AH SLABS for $23.83 each in sporting goods next to the trail cams. I still use SLABs when on a budget, weight is not an issue, and charging arrangements are odd. Unlike more modern battery chemistries, SLABs are very tolerant when it comes to charging them in a field expedient manner.

My standard go-to these days for offline writing and diagramming. 97 cents each in the office/school supplies. USA made. Get one for the MONEX this week, and make it your first LP/lab notebook. Bring one to class.

PSA

03 December 2018

Praxis: OPFOR RDF Capability

Stuff they don't cover on the ham radio exams.

Currently deployed systems are good for at least 2 degrees accuracy with much less than 10 seconds of transmission time from an emitter.

Артиллерия - плохая новость, товарищ.
 
لا تمزح.

See you in class.

02 December 2018

MONEX: Pearl Harbor - 07DEC2018

MONEX: Pearl Harbor
Date/Time
07DEC2018 - 0000-2359 UTC

Equipment Required
SSB/CW/digital HF receiving capability from 1600-28000 KHz.

Frequency Ranges Of Interest
Procedure
  • User selects frequency range(s) from Table 1, above.
  • User performs band/sector searches on selected frequency ranges for at least 1 hour during time frame specified.
  • User logs following data: DATE, TIME, FREQUENCY, MODE, CALLSIGNS(?), TRAFFIC, MISC NOTES/COMMENTS
  • User posts log as a comment to this post, and via email to sparks31wyo@gmail.com.
 All qualifying participants will be entered into a drawing for one (1) free admission to any one 2019 Class. To qualify, at least three complete log entries must be submitted.



Zucking Around

Everyone likes to trash FB, but it works for now. FWIW, I've maintained a S31 presence there since the beginning of this endeavor without issues.

If you're not comfortable saying it on a witness stand, under oath, then don't say it on social media.

So, for those of you who maintain a FB presence, here is where the cool kids hang out.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/2024602847552957/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/1420098574958783/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/1055715391269496/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/1688361191410117/

01 December 2018

Is is good?

I spent this morning at an antique radio swap. It would have been a good opportunity for any locals to pick up a nice vacuum tube receiver for their commo preps. The museum will be holding more of them throughout the year, so Nutmeg State readers take note!

I'm always being asked by readers "Is such-and-such a good radio?"  While I have owned more than a few different makes and models of receivers and transceivers over the years, I can only personally vouch for about 1% of what's out there.

As far as SWLing goes, my usual go-to receiver is an Icom IC-R75. Those of you who have been to a class within the past few years have seen it, usually along with a Whistler WS1040 police scanner.

Both of these are good radios, but they are not the only good radios out there. Let's look at a reasonably-priced tube receiver that you might have found at the recent swap meet:

This is a Hallicrafters S-53. It is a low-tier general coverage HF receiver from the late 1940s-1950s. Many of them were used in Novice stations of that era. Is it any good? Google it, and you'll find Eham rates it 4.3/5. You'll also find a manual and schematics online to download. A search of sold/completed auctions on Ebay will tell you what they sell for, which will help you make an offer (or counter-offer) to a seller. Overall not a bad choice, especially for your first tube radio that you could actually fix.

While I was at the swap meet today, I gave a little help to one of the younger (probably around 14 or so) attendees who was trying to get a 1970s vintage RS-232 terminal up an running. No one else there seemed to be familiar with RS-232. After showing him how to do a hard loopback (short pins 2 & 3), what the dip-switch settings on the back of the terminal adjust, and the difference between DTE and DCE, I told him to do a search on the make/model, on the EIA RS-232 standard,  and to surf beyond the first few pages when doing so. Sure enough, he found documentation and learned that the code displayed on the screen was for a keyboard error. Turns out that DEC and Hazeltine keyboards are not compatible with each other. You all are likely packing phones with Internet access. Got a question and don't have a nearby expert to help you? Google it.  You'll get enough info to at least make an educated guess.  Here's another one:

http://radiopics.com/By%20Make/Lafayette/Lafayette_Guardian%205000.htm
 You find one of these on a table for $5 at a hamfest. You know the make and model, and its frequency coverage, but a web search doesn't turn up much. What do you do?  Look at the battery compartment. Any corrosion? Put in some batteries, turn it on, and tune around the bands. Hear anything? If the inside is clean, it turns on, and it receives signals, then give the seller $5 and add it to the collection. Is is good? Who cares? It only cost a few bucks and it works. Use it for your favorite SW broadcast, or leave it on the local 2 meter repeater or fire dispatch frequency.

Place Your Spectrum On A War Footing

From EETimes: https://www.eetimes.com/document.asp?doc_id=1333975
DoD Places Spectrum on a War Footing
The U.S. Navy has formally elevated electronic warfare and the underlying electromagnetic spectrum to the status of a “warfighting battle space” equivalent to its sea, air, land, space, and cyber operations.
The directive approved by Thomas Modly, undersecretary of the Navy, acknowledges the growing significance of what has also become known as “spectrum warfare,” defined as the merger of conventional tools like electronic warfare with cyber operations.
On the private sector side of the house, we have this news story from one of my southern colleagues, Brushbeater, on problems with Unseen.is: https://brushbeater.wordpress.com/2018/11/28/unseen-is-outage-all-your-eggs-in-one-basket/

Lest we think this is something new with Unseen.is, here is a similar post from a different source almost 2 years ago: http://earthchanges.ning.com/forum/topics/email-received-from-unseen-is-reporting-outages

Also our old nemesis the Russkies are back at it again:
Russia suspected of jamming GPS signal in Finland
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-46178940

Russia jammed GPS during major NATO military exercise with US troops
https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/14/politics/russia-nato-jamming/index.html



Не ошибитесь товарищ. Она может быть красивой, но она тебя испортит.

With the whole world placing its spectrum on a war footing, you should too. Have you ran a band/sector search recently to keep your SIGINT skill-set up to speed? Have you paid a recent visit to the FCC General Menu Reports page to see if any new licenses became active near you? Do all your (and your buddies') radios have the same programming? Have you found and programmed in a bunch of simplex channels and tried them to make sure you can all talk to one another when the local repeater goes down? Have you set up (and tried) a PACE Plan? This is all stuff you need to do now, so you'll hopefully have your act together when the balloon goes up.

Need help? In only two weeks on December 15th, I will be hosting a free class, Intelligence Preparation of the Neighborhood (IPN), in Watertown, CT. IPN is a systematic, continuous process of analyzing the threat and environment in a specific area. It is designed to support estimates and decision making. Applying the IPN process helps you selectively apply and maximize your capabilities at critical points in time and space. This free course will provide an introduction to the IPN process, and how it applies to individuals and small groups or voluntary associations.

On the first Sunday of next month, there is the Basic Grid-Down/Down-Grid Communications, Communications Monitoring, and Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Class, also in Watertown, CT. This is a one-day class that covers all the basics you need to set up your monitoring post, collect signals intelligence (SIGINT), get on the air with amateur radio and personal communications services (FRS, GMRS, MURS, CB, Part 15), and establish communications networks and interoperability with other like-minded individuals.

Those of you who do not live in the Northeast will also have opportunities to learn. A full schedule of classes across the United States has been set up for 2019.

Things are not going to get better in this country. If anything, they will continue to get worse. Now is the time to set up your communications, information collecting, and intelligence producing networks, and become proficient in their use, before it becomes too late. We have seen "outages" and "deplatforming" of alternative Internet sites, active jamming of navigational and communications networks, and small-scale civil disturbances. Now is the time to prepare while you still can.