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Vagabond Ragchew Net: Home

Welcome to the Vagabond Ragchew Net!

M-F 14:30-16:00 Eastern - 147.315 MHz (+) (100 Hz tone; no EchoLink) - North Carolina, USA


The Vagabond Ragchew Net is a group of FCC-licensed amateur radio operators who meet on the air every weekday afternoon, starting at 2:30 pm Eastern, to inform, enlighten, ragchew, and possibly add a bit of humor to the day.

Our nets are currently being held on the K4GW repeater, 147.315 MHz (+600 kHz offset, 100 Hz tone), located on Sauratown Mountain, 20.27 miles NNW of downtown Winston-Salem, NC, about halfway between Pilot Mountain and Hanging Rock State Park. Previously, our nets have been held on the W4NC repeater, 145.470 MHz (-600 kHz offset, 100 Hz subaudible tone access), which is owned by the Forsyth Amateur Radio Club and was also on Sauratown Mountain.

Our current use of the K4GW is temporary, pending completion of certain repairs at the site of the W4NC Sauratown repeater. During this period, it will no longer be possible for anyone to participate via EchoLink. We regret this inconvenience to our remote members.

When the net began in 1991, it had difficulty finding a regular frequency on which to operate and was forced to move from place to place on the airwaves, leading the original group of founders to refer to themselves as Vagabonds. Today, our roster encompasses over 700 members. Some have passed away and become "silent keys," but most are still licensed and active. In a typical month, about 60-70 hams check in with us to share a bit of themselves and their daily lives.

We welcome all newcomers to join in the net as a casual check-in or, if they indicate an interest, to start their series of five check-ins within 30 days in order to be pledged as a permanent Vagabond. We also encourage all new hams to join us to break into amateur communications. If you do not yet have your amateur radio license, please contact us! We'll help you get the information you need to take an FCC test and get on the air. Amateur radio is for everyone, and we'd love to see you on our check-in log!

73 from all the Vagabonds!

Check-In Procedure

We are a directed net. At intervals, the net controller will ask for check-ins. To check in, please wait until check-ins are invited, then:

* Call the net controller (just say "Net Control" or the controller's call sign);

* Unkey immediately and PAUSE TO LISTEN:

* If you hear someone else when you unkey, you've doubled. Wait for that person to finish completely with his or her check-in. Then, start over.

* If you don't hear someone else, announce your Vagabond number (if you have one), call sign, and name.

* If you're mobile, portable, or on Echolink, say so. You'll receive priority.

In a directed net such as ours, all transmissions should be directed to the net controller. To speak to someone else directly, please obtain permission from the net controller first.

YOUR COOPERATION IS ESSENTIAL for ensuring that anyone with emergency or priority traffic is able to get into the repeater during the net. Before transmitting, PLEASE PAUSE 1-2 SECONDS after the squelch tail drops so that anyone who needs the repeater for emergency or priority purposes can get in.

Finally, remember to keep the FCC happy by stating your call sign at the end of your communication.
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