Sunday 30 June 2019

CTARC Gerald Meneses ZS1GRM Silent key - 27 June '19

Gerald Meneses ZS1GRM
1939 - 2019
The key of Gerald Meneses ZS1GRM went silent in the early hours of Thursday, 27 June 2019, after a brief illness. He was three months away from his 81st birthday.

Gerald will be remembered by many of us at the CTARC. He was a straightforward, honest man; gentle in his manner and forthright in his opinions. 

Like many radio amateurs, Gerald's interest started with Citizens Band, where he went by the handle of "Flat Spanner". He then obtained his amateur radio license in 1978.

Gerald was actively involved with many aspects of Amateur Radio throughout the years. He was a keen DX-er. He constructed and experimented with HF  and VHF antennas. He was involved with Hamnet rallies. He served on the Committee of the Oakdale Club, He was awarded the SARL Jack Twine Award in 2006. He was a member of the Cape Town Amateur Radio Centre for many years, and a regular participant in 2m evening skeds - with Paddy ZS1GPF /SK, Dennis ZS1DTM /SK, Dave ZS1DFR and Nick ZS1ZD - for over a decade.

He was a skilled Mechanic and Auto Electrician, working with Dennis ZS1AU [who introduced him to Ham Radio] in the General Post Office Engineering Department. His proven technical skills were such that that he built a working full-scale gyrocopter in the garage of his QTH. He was an avid motorcyclist, which he combined with his keen interest in photography to document the Peninsula around which he traveled extensively.

Gerald is survived by his wife Christina, his two daughters and son, and two grandchildren. Our sincerest condolences go to his family and his son-in-law, Daniel ZS1DEA.

So long Gerald, we will miss you. The ham bands will be far quieter in your absence.

Gerald ZS1GRM, Dave ZS1DFR & Dennis ZS1AU

Gerald with Dennis ZS1DTM

Gerald's badges reflected both the history of South Africa and his own
amateur radio career!

Gerald ZS1GRM, photo courtesy of ZS1AU
The ZS1OAK Committee [in approx 2008]; L to R: Dennis ZS1DTM,
Ettienne ZS1AX, Marion ZS1QRN, Gerald ZS1GRM, Dave ZS1SG,
Dennis ZS1AU and Fred ZS1FCS

Monday 24 June 2019

CTARC AGM - 27 July '19

The CTARC's next monthly meeting, being the Annual General Meeting, will be held at the clubhouse on Saturday 27 July 2019.

At this meeting, CTARC members will receive reports from the Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and others on the club's activities and finances throughout the past year, as well as future plans. The CTARC chairman and committee for the 2019/2020 period will also be elected.

After the formal business of the AGM has been concluded, there will be the chance to socialise with other members and friends, as is the tradition at CTARC.

The AGM is an important meeting for the club and we encourage all members to attend.

Further information and documentation will be posted here presently, e-mailed to CTARC members, published in Ragchew and announced on our Sunday morning bulletins in due course.

CTARC Committee Meeting - 22 July '19

CTARC Committee members are reminded of the forthcoming meeting at 19h00 on Monday 22 July 2019 at the clubhouse.

Committee members, please do make an effort to attend.

(If you can't be there, please remember to send in your reports and apologies to Rob or Anne.).

Sunday 23 June 2019

CTARC Report on Meeting of Saturday 22 Jun '19

On Saturday 22 June 2019, the Cape of Storms strutted its fury across the City with high winds and lots of rain. However, this didn't deter the CTARC from going ahead with the monthly meeting! We had a very well-attended social afternoon with braai fires ablaze under an umbrella where some members chose to keep warm and dry around the fire. Simultaneously, the special Fox Hunt antenna building event took place inside the club house.

28 members and guests attended and socialised while 7 members constructed the portable tape measure fox hunt antenna and will soon join the growing ranks of club fox hunters. These antennas are very portable, being fold-able, which makes them ideal for packing into and taking out of a vehicle. These antennas are highly directional and ideal for finding hidden transmitters in the field. They also function well as transmitting antennas for portable and field operations. The cost to construct these antennas is well under R100 each.

Fox hunting is a growing interest at the CTARC. Perhaps one day we may well do inter-club fox hunting competitions followed by a bring-and-braai. These would be fun social events for everyone, including families.

Photos of the Saturday event will be posted here in due course.

CTARC Chairman

Thursday 20 June 2019

CTARC Welcome Bring 'n Braai & Antenna Building Party - 22 Jun '19

REMINDER : TOMORROW - Saturday 22 June 2019:
The RAE Welcome Bring 'n Braai & Antenna Building Party: Read on......

We are aware of the weather situation for Saturday [rain forecast]. However, we have decided to go ahead with the events as planned. We will endeavour to keep the braai fire dry, so we can all have an enjoyable afternoon.

See you all tomorrow!


The Monthly Meeting is a Workshop and Bring ‘n Braai

Hi Everyone

Come along this Saturday for the ‘Fox Hunt’ Antenna Building Party run by Chairman, Rob ZS1SA,

Also come along to meet and congratulate the Candidates that recently wrote the RAE course, and introduce them to our friendly Club.

Bring your own meat and all your preferred accompaniments. Certain refreshments will be available and the fire will be sponsored by the CTARC.

The Antenna Building Workshop will start at 14h00 and braai fires will be lit at 14h30, to be ready by 15h30.

Come along and enjoy an interesting afternoon.

CTARC Fox Hunt Antenna Building Day Requirements

We have stripped it down to the absolute basic requirements.

All you will need to bring:
  • Two 20 mm PVC 4-way conduit boxes (about R7 each)
  • One 2 0mm PVC conduit Tee (sometimes called an Inspection Tee (about R8)
  • One 5 metre long tape measure. 19mm width preferred (about R35)
  • Plus whatever coaxial connector which mates with your radio.
Pick up these four items at any Buco or hardware store for well under R75 and come and build your own three-element Fox Hunt Yagi antenna at CTARC this Saturday afternoon. We will supply the remaining pieces and help you to put it all together. This directional antenna is also suitable for transmitting on and ideal for field operations in addition to fox hunts.

The only other item you will need to purchase is a suitable coax connector which fits your hand held radio. Alternatively we will have a few BNC connectors available for sale at the club for R30 each or you can purchase a suitable connector at a later time and install it on the coax cable yourself at home. In order to save some time, if you already have a connector for your radio and about 1.5 metres of RG-58 cable you can fit the connector to one end of your coax cable and bring it along on the day to attach to your new Yagi.


Rob, ZS1SA.
(CTARC Chairman)

(CTARC Secretary and Editor)
Cell: 072 268 1207


NB: This event has now taken place. Read the report [here]

Friday 14 June 2019

CTARC - Subscription Renewal for 2019 / 2020

A HUGE THANK YOU to those members who have already renewed their club subscriptions for 2019 / 2020,

For those club members who are still to renew their membership:

There has been a small increase in subs for this year.

The new amount payable is R180-00 per Member, and R140-00 for Pensioners (over 65).

(For new members joining the CTARC, a once-of Admin Fee of R50-00 applies.)

(Remember your spouse/partner may join the Club for 50% of your fee).

The Membership Renewal Form is attached with all the information you need, including banking details, and this is your reminder to please pay your 2019 / 2020 subs as soon as possible.

(EFT is preferred if possible please, but I will be collecting cash subs and forms at the AGM.)
Please remember, to send me proof of payment if you pay by EFT.

CTARC subs are due each year on 30 June 2019, and those members who have not let us know their intention to renew on or before the AGM, we will have to assume you wish to be removed from the membership and mailing lists.

*Most important... If your contact details have changed please also update them on the form attached please.


Also available to members is our high power remote base station at Morningstar.

If you would like use Morningstar and have not already subscribed, then kindly add an additional R300-00 to your membership subs which will be used as your contribution toward the site rental costs at Morningstar.

Once I receive your proof of payment, I will add your name to the list and you will be given access to Morningstar for one year from date of payment.

You will be sent setup instructions for the use of Morningstar once payment is received.

The Club is growing, with many new members joining this past year. Your Club has many exciting and different events planned for the upcoming year so please don't miss out and renew your membership now.

I will see you all on Saturday, 27 July 2019 at the AGM, where you can enjoy some delicious refreshments and socialise with your friends and fellow Amateurs.

kind regards

(CTARC Secretary :)

Tuesday 4 June 2019

CTARC RAE Bring & Braai - 22 Jun '19



NB: This event has now taken place. Read the report [here]

Monday 3 June 2019

CTARC June Meeting - 22 Jun '19

Coming up in June, in place of our regular meeting we will be having an antenna building session for those of you wishing to build a fox hunt antenna.

We need commitments from those wishing to build the hand held tape measure antenna in order to buy the parts. Estimated cost will be under R200 for everything.

Please let myself or the Secretary know by the end of April if you wish to join in and build this small Yagi antenna.




NB: This event has now taken place. Read the report [here]

Sunday 2 June 2019

CTARC Committee Meeting - 17 June '19

CTARC Committee members are reminded of the forthcoming meeting at 19h00 on Monday 17 June 2019 at the clubhouse.

(If you can't be there, please remember to send in your reports and apologies to Rob or Anne.).


Note: This event has now taken place. A report-back will be presented at the June 22 meeting by CTARC chairman, Rob ZS1SA. 

Saturday 1 June 2019

CTARC Ragchew - 1 June '19

The June 2019 edition of the Cape Town Amateur Radio Centre's bi-monthly newsletter "Ragchew" is now published.

Grateful thanks once again to our editor, Anne, for all her excellent work in putting together this month's edition, and to all those who contributed articles.

Remember please, Anne is always on the look-out for articles to publish in Ragchew!

You can advertise ham-related articles for sale in Ragchew, including colour photos, details and prices. To do so, contact the editor here.

Download the PDF file [here];

Ragchew is also on our Newsletters Page