Band Conditions

14 May 2019

Electronic Security A La Carte - Part 2 (and Some Crazy Rant You Can Ignore)

Redacted for various reasons, but 2.4 GHz, digital, and FHSS. Looks like I also found the chipset used, which is very useful to know if you harbor nightly fantasies of functioning around a dystopian society in the high Cybertek tradition. Nah, don't dream it. Be it. Like T.W. Lee once said, 

"Youngest ever veteran of the Psychedelic Wars, Tommy Hawk was."
That should give the poor gormless drones (probably the ones who were honey potted in from lurking among us something to try to think on for a while. 

In the meantime, I got a lab full of assorted shithouse fixtures I need to fuck with and write about for those readers who are among the Great Pumpkin's loftier creations.


13 May 2019

Free Class Offer!

I will offer a free class (out of the last two remaining) to anyone who has a Vietnam War to 1980s era Flack Vest, Vietnam Era Rucksack, or PRC-25/77 radio to trade for a slot.

Electronic Security A La Carte

You need an electronic security solution yesterday, you have a tight budget, waiting for Amazon to deliver the goods is not an option, and you'd rather not have the purchase on a debit/credit card for, ahem, certain reasons.

No fantasy there. Pretty easy actually. Cash, carry, and the receipt says "office supplies."

This is not a TEOTWAWKI, SHTF, or WROL thing. This is right here and now. Zero to rocking out with your rooster out in about 30 minutes in most places. Total cost was less than the heart attack special at the scary clown. And here's a bonus: no Bearcat or Baofeng is going to find it.

This is the stuff that's important these days. Stuff you can do now to protect yourself and collect information, as opposed to waiting for the TEOTWAWKI WROL Zombie Apocalypse SHTF 2nd American Revolution which should have happened a long time ago, and is not likely to happen any time soon. I've been watching for a long time now, and there are a few disillusioned geriatric boomers who have been waiting even longer.

Want to learn more? Come to class. There are two more left and then they're gone. 

11 May 2019

Old-School Redux: Radio Shack PRO-43 Scanner

The year was 1992, and this was the top of the line handheld scanner that Radio Shack had to offer. Its performance blew away the PRO-34 it replaced, and it'll still give more modern scanners a run for their money. I sold my first one years ago to someone who wanted it more than I did, and spent the proceeds on a Uniden BC-250D with the optional P25 decoder board. Been looking a while now for one in mint condition, as most out there have been heavily (ab)used. Finally found one that is so mint the diode hasn't even been clipped on it to restore full 800 MHz. coverage. No, I'm not going to bother doing it.

As an analog AM/FM scanning receiver for common LMR bands, there are few handhelds that will beat its performance. It was the communications monitoring operative's unit of choice during the 1990s until trunking and P25 systems started becoming more common. There is one that looks pretty mint on Ebay right now for $100. I'd consider that a reasonable price, although I didn't pay that much for mine.

I once knew a CI agent and former Cybertek subscriber, now deceased, who used a PRO-43 with some old Motorola Flip Phones when he needed to do audio work. He was also fond of modifying baby monitors. Shades of Frank and the FLMA (Chapter 5), anyone?

Documentation and service manuals are available for download at

Anyway, I've been looking for a nice one for a while now, and I'm glad I finally found it. If you come across one in decent working shape at a hamfest you should go buy it. It'll work a hell of a lot better as a receiver than that Baofeng HT.

General Update

Finally seeing a slowdown of visits from a certain patriot/prepper site. It's about time the dilettante deluge ended.

Only three weeks until the Virginia class, but still plenty of time to sign up. Alumni can come free, and since it's been five years since I did a full scale East Coast class, there's a lot of updated material to cover, including Baofeng vulnerabilities that will shut one down with common off the shelf equipment. Hey, I let people know that they were junk, and after June I suspect many of them will become non-operational when some less-restrained folks get ahold of the info. Yes, Virginia, Baofengs still suck as bad as they did five years ago. Only difference is that now people should know better. If they would only pay less attention to Brietbart and Barnhardt and listen closely when the adults are speaking.

The state of Connecticut, and I suspect other states, offer free college tuition to veterans and National Guard members. So to answer the retarded ass clown on another blog who made the MIT comment, no one wouldn't be able to do MIT, but if one joined the National Guard (in Massachusetts) they could go to UMASS for an EE/CS degree which would be good enough, if they would only grow a pair and leave their safe space, but that is the typical behavior I have come to expect from that scene.

For those of you who posses more common sense, there are worse things you can commit eight years towards than the National Guard. If you can't get an electronics or tradesman MOS then go clerical, finance, or logistics. The military needs support people as much as they need combat arms.  Actually, go for the available MOS or AFSC that requires the highest ASVAB score you qualify in.  We had the biggest, baddest, most ornery trouble-maker in High School talk to an Army Recruiter, take the ASVAB, and go into the Finance Corps. He's now a CPA with enough money to do whatever he wants, including buy politicians. He's been getting legislation he doesn't like subtlety altered to be less odious to his sense of aesthetics. I'm glad he's on my side, or more realistically I'm glad the dude doesn't hate me.  You can be that guy, smart instead of a stupid ass-clown hanging out with other ass-clowns hand-jobbing each other whenever someone reposts an AOC or Biden meme on their walled garden safe space.

Amyway, to reiterate, there are two Technology, Intelligence, and Communications Classes left. One is in Connecticut, and the other is in Virginia. Advanced training is available from your state college/university, and in many cases can be free (or close to it) if you're willing to join the state organized militia for a few years. As a bonus, some desirable MOSes offer a cash incentive if you sign up for them, and you get some useful training to help you out in other aspects of your life. Yes, there is a certain risk entailed, but since you're one of the Great Pumpkin's loftier creations you're going to put it back in your pants and become a 36B, 94F, or 42A instead of an 11B or 19D. Don't know what those MOSes are? Then go Google them. For those of you who are broke and spent your youth doing things to ensure that you'd never make it though MEPS, here is a freebie:

07 May 2019

Newsletter Mailing List Update

The mailing list for the newsletter is now fully operational, and subscribers should have received the first message. If not, please let me know.

06 May 2019

Guest Post: R-Pi OTP/DRYAD True Hardware RNG How-To

R-Pi OTP/DRYAD True Hardware RNG How-To

by Jefferson.Thomas <>

I had been looking for a way to generate OTPs that would (in theory) be as secure as possible without the encumbrance and time involved by using dice, locked in a windowless basement with a Smith-Corona. I also wanted to be able to make them as small as possible. After a lot of digging that was only mildly fruitful, I decided to make one myself. I also wanted it so that I - and anyone else capable of following a recipe - could make more with a minimum of trouble.

04 May 2019

Sparks31 June Lynchburg VA Class Info Sent

If you signed up for the class in Lynchburg, VA next month, you should have an email with the specifics waiting for you.  If not, let me know.

If you have not yet signed up, there is still time. See for more info. I'm also doing a July class in Watertown, CT. These are the last two classes "Sparks31" is doing, so if you wanted to attend, and have not yet done so this is your last chance.

If you are a Sparks31 alumni, and want a free refresher, send me an email.