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Hamvention 2017

2

Answers

  • Tim VE6SHTim VE6SH Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    I will be at the Saturday night banquet. I will be at the IARU booth in the ARRL Expo during the hamvention. Drop by to say hello. Tim VE6SH
  • edited May 2017
    That's a fairly young bunch compared to our local DX club.  There are a few local hams that are getting bunches of new younger hams licensed,(several hundred in the past couple of years) but they're mostly techs and at that stage are more interested in cheap HTs and VHF/UHF mobile rigs than in DX. Some of them are preppers, interested in EMCOMs, and some just see ham radio as akin to CB for local use.   I wouldn't expect a DX convention to attract many from the younger age bracket.  It takes time in the hobby, and the ability to devote serious funds, to get to really bitten by the DX bug.  My concern is that most of these new Techs will get bored and drop out before they upgrade to higher class licenses and develop real interest in HF.
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    I do agree about Ohio. However next year I am going to Orlando since the kids can go to Disney with grandma. Visalia, probably not. I have a general problem with going to that state.
  • Bill W2PKYBill W2PKY Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Orlando is a nice mini-Dayton. One day is plenty to explore most things of interest. Perhaps you can talk FRS into an evening event there once again.
  • Steve K9ZWSteve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    It is ONLY because Hamvention left the Hara that I am returning this year. While a county fairgrounds is not my personal druthers, these sorts of Farm Expo grounds can work. Hamcation in Orlando is pretty much a similar sort of thing. I try to catch the Orlando Hamcation when it fits with work travel. From my corner of Wisconsin getting to Visalia is a chore and pricey. There too is a personal avoidance of "hive politics" locations to deal with. --- Attending our area DX club meeting I too suddenly find myself the second youngest of the 25 folk attending. Sounds like 80% are retired, and 40% of the working are actually past retirement age. Maybe the club should add an AED to its equipment? ---- Reading between the lines Hamvention 2017 sounds likely to have several neat Flex things happening. See you all there, 73 Steve K9ZW
  • KY6LA_HowardKY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    I personally recommend Freidrichshafen as perhaps the best overall show. Beautiful charming city on Lake Constance. Great **** gardens. Modern conventions center. Makers Fair. Young people. High quality technical talks. - many in English. Free wines and spirits from most national ham societies except ARRL. Attendance approaching Dayton numbers Seems that at least a dozen Dayton Hamvention Organizers get an all expense paid trip to Freidrichshafen ever year. . Too bad Hamvention organizers don't use that money to improve rhe Hamvention Tokyo is also very good and most new Japanese radios debut there. But Tokyo weather in August is not fun
  • Michael CosloMichael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    Hara, for all of it's decrepitude, had some semblance of a convention. Sure, the bathroom floors were wet with Gawd knows what, and smelled, sure the place hadn't been renovated since forever. But it was a piece of Ham radio tradition and history.  The handwriting was on the wall though. The 2011 turdfest was when I new Hara was on it's last gasp.

    So when HARA folded, there were two directions to go. I thought sure that they might use the convention facilities in Dayton, or possibly Cincinnati. I looked into both of those areas, and heard that Dayton CoC had made overtures. 

    But they decided to go the farm building/flea market  route. I've been to hamfests/flea markets in farm buildings, and by and large they are not doing very well. 


  • KY6LA_HowardKY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Having spent many hours in the **** gardens at Freidrichshafen imbibing with the Dayton organizers while they were enjoying their all expense paid junkets to Europe, one could reasonably conclude that the decision was made by "Follow the Money." The Dayton Convention Center was more expensive than the Cowsheds so the money to fund junkets would have been less. Hence the decision to choose cowsheds. But heck, real life experience makes me cynical.
  • edited May 2017
    >"I still go to the actual hamfest for part of the day but in all honesty I haven't even bought a ticket yet, and I'm debating going hanging out at the hamfest for one day then going to the after hours events which is the real attraction for me."

    Same feeling here.  I always fly into Cincinnati/Covington then spend Friday in Dayton and maybe a couple hours in the AM on Saturday.  The remaining time is spent in Cincinnati, one of my favorite U.S. cities.  If it wasn't for my stay in Cincy, I would not attend Dayton.

    I was hoping the venue would have changed to Cincy, but the organizers had their reasons.  Howard made a good point about the agricultural fair setting. It will be interesting to see how many folks from DX countries attend in the coming years if the venue in Xenia remains the same.

    Next year, Visalia then I'll try Freidrichshafen.

    Paul, W9AC
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited November 2019
    I'm going to ham com this year. Maybe hamtronic next year where they will have wrtc as well.
  • John - AF3KJohn - AF3K Member
    edited June 23
    My reason for going to a national/international hamfest is learning about the state of the art in amateur radio.

    I like hearing presentations and insights from experts, Q&A sessions, and meeting the names behind the logos and the articles.  Visiting association, special interest and vendor booths is interesting as an activity between sessions - I always have a shopping list for new gear, but I'm not spending time and money for travel to save 10 cents on a connector. I especially enjoy seeing innovative new products.

    Having a show organizer with a venue supporting the above, in a travel time friendly location with great restaurants, sightseeing and weather gets my vote.  

    I'm going to Dayton again this year, but the move to Xenia makes its seem it is more focused on the cheap-o flea market aspect than the stuff that interests me.

    John AF3K
  • Michael CosloMichael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    Cincinnati does indeed have the resources to put on a very good convention.
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Wayne was a true visionary. I enjoyed every single 73! I read. It was the first ham mag I had ever read, and it helped draw me in. 

    What he described is essentially why I stopped going to my club's meetings. When I do go, I drop off and pick up my bureau bags and that's about it. There is endless back and forth by a few members who have to put in so much of their 2c that many times the discussion exceeds the national debt.  

    I prefer networking with hams on social media, and also doing stuff with hams in person. Even in YLRL I've taken on the personal mission of getting YLs involved in "exciting" aspects of ham radio such as radiosport and making/homebrew rather than just nets and rag chew. My door is always open for people to ask for help and advice and I try to write for the newsletter often. There are YL youth who like things like making satellite contacts, special events, contests, DX and homebrew. My daughters and my son are often working on software and hardware projects with me and they ask about things too. I let them type and explain stuff and ask questions. I even have them help me solder stuff. That's what you gotta do. 
  • Ken - NM9PKen - NM9P Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    I will be attending this year to see for they do with their first effort in the new venue.

    I have been going fairly regularly for the past 30 years or so.  
    Progressive changes in my age, finances, interests, and health have caused a steady evolution of my "Hamvention habits."

    When I was younger and MUCH poorer, I loved to spend time walking through the entire outdoor flea market, working on my farmer-tan and trying to find some used equipment/accessory bargain that wasn't already snatched in the "pre-flea market" wanderings of vendors on Thursday evening.  Lodging was primarily camping in my van at the Dayton Tall Timbers KOA, before they started price gouging and requiring 4 night minimums, etc.  (My spouse used to go with me, and enjoyed attending many of the "alternate activities" they held at the local school buildings.  Anyone remember those?)   

    As I grew older I spent more time wandering the main floors and commercial exhibits, looking for a good deal on my ONE major purchase of the year.  (usually under $500, which may by my whole radio budget for the year.)  So home came a new HT or Mobile rig.  My best deal, about 12 years ago, was a brand new IC-706MK2G (with a mail-in certificate for a remote kit) for $699 when the Dollar-to-Yen rate was extremely favorable.  The next year it was back up to almost $950.

    As I continued to age, and already had about all the junk I needed, I began spending more time in a few of the better forums - Contesting, Antennas, Dxing, Packet Radio, AMSAT, QRP and Home Construction, SDR, etc.  And spent MUCH less time wandering the flea markets and vendors.  Physical & health limitations also helped dictate this trend. Ebay, Amazon, and other online retailers have now become my main parts and equipment suppliers.

    I never had the budget or time for the various Hamvention dinners, but often would drop in on some hospitality gatherings of QRP clubs, etc.

    Lately, since I have gotten into SDR and the Flex Community and Alpha Testing team, and have been able to do more DXing and Contesting, I have begun to make more radio friendships with people with like minds and interests.  These guide my time at the Hamvention.  The Flex Banquet and gatherings have become my main motivator for attending the Hamvention.

    Dayton is still close enough to drive 4-4 1/2 hours.  Last year I spent more money on motel bills and food than I spent on any equipment purchases.  But the opportunity to spend time with friends, and make some new ones, and the new information gathered by a few special presentations, FRS among them, made the trip worthwhile.

    If I had to make airline and hotel reservations every year to attend a hamfest, I would't be able to afford it every year.

    Freidrichshafen sounds very appealing, but is way out of my budget and vacation time.  Visalia sounds very interesting and may be a possibility some day.  Orlando might be combined with a family vacation some day, but we probably get to Disney about every eight or ten years.

    So for now, as long as the major players still introduce their new stuff there, and I can stand the venue, (can a cow shed or a tent be any worse than Hara Arena?) Hamvention will still be my usual "ham radio mini-vacation."    

    But, I plan to retire in 5-8 years.  Who knows what the future holds?

    Ken - NM9P

    BTW - I will be there Thursday for the Flex Gathering/Banquet and will take in a few forums on Friday and on Saturday Morning.  But I need to leave Saturday early afternoon to get back for Sunday.
  • Ken - NM9PKen - NM9P Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
     ..."I'm not spending time and money for travel to save 10 cents on a connector...."  LOL

     I agree, John.  Hamfests, like Club meetings, need to focus upon building relationships/networking between hams, and promoting the advancement of the "state of the art" and the cutting edge of the hobby....not promoting the trading of largely useless junk that can be found on ebay.

    However....I have gotten many a useful idea by browsing through the vendors and "junque" (high class junk) sellers booths.  My father taught me -- "if you can't figure out a solution to a project...go walk through the garage, (which never had a car in it, but was filled with parts, junk, and old hardware) and see what items speak to you."
  • edited June 23
    What's the best way to arrive in Freidrichshafen?  Looks to me like an initial connection into Paris, then to Zurich?  Munich is a bit far although I would like to tour Bavaria by rail on the way to Freidrichshafen.

    Paul, W9AC
  • Tim VE6SHTim VE6SH Member ✭✭
    edited March 2019
    Zurich and train from flughafen to Romanshorn and ferry across the lake to FHN. Tim VE6SH
  • KY6LA_HowardKY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    I 'm usually in Provence in June so I just hop a Train from Avignon. But Zurich or Frankfurt or Munich are,all quick train rides This year is in July so hotels may be hard to find at this late date. Suggest u try the Swiss side of Lake Constance and take the ferry every day. Next year it looks like early June
  • John - AF3KJohn - AF3K Member
    edited May 2017
    Ken - Hope to see you at the Flex banquet on Thurs!
  • Mike W8MMMike W8MM Member ✭✭
    edited July 2019
    Where/what is a nice, convenient hotel.   More stars is better ;~}
  • KY6LA_HowardKY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017

    Its pretty late to find something close

    I have stayed at several 3/4 star hotels in Friedrichshafen... hard to find 4 stars or better but I suspect the better ones may be sold out by now.

    German 3 star hotels are smallish rooms by US Standards but usually include superb breakfasts

    Suggest you start with the tourist bureau

    http://ibe.incomingsoft.de/publicsoft/ibe.jsp?manref=FRIEDHFN&profile=FNS&type=uk_s&deta... 


    http://www.hamradio-friedrichshafen.de/ham-en/travel-accommodation/accommodation.php


    Alternatively stay across Lake Constance in Switzerland.. 30 minute by Ferry

    Or try www.Hotels.com

    The trains are very convenient so you don't necessarily need to stay in Town as there is a FREE Shuttle bus from the railway station to the Convention Center which is located out by the Airport.

    The town itself is rather pretty with lots of bars and action on the seafront.

  • Tim VE6SHTim VE6SH Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    The See Hotel is the DARC HQ. Tim VE6SH
  • Michael CosloMichael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    Our club has adopted the strong board of directors concept. The nitty gritty of running the club goes to the ****, and in general, there are time limits to discussions even there. Club meetings are the minimum legal requirements of meetings, then moving on to the meeting presentation. We have one Emcomm meeting a year, one Olde timer's meeting, a Spring banquet, Summer Picnic and Christmas party, and lot's of new technology presentation. 

    Biggest issue with the new folks is keeping them away from a few of the "Toxic folks" until they get addicted to Ham radio.

    I've been to a few of the meetings of clubs that Ken has described. Horror shows, and they will soon cease to exist, with the remnants wondering why "Ham Radio is Dying". Only for them it is dying. 
  • edited November 2019
    Well, with Visalia, Dayton and Friedrichshafen, decided to
    save the money and not go, enough money saved for a Power Genius Amp !!
  • Tim VE6SHTim VE6SH Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017

    As Howard says the "action" in the evenings is either in campground by the Messa or along the waterfront in F'hafen. There is a very good shuttle from the square in front of the train station (and See Hotel) to and from the Messa.

    Tim VE6SH

  • Steve K9ZWSteve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017

    @ Friedrichshafen folks - might be worth reposting the information you have put together to a dedicated "Friedrichshafen Hamfest" thread, as it is pretty well buried here.  I think the "festival grounds" is "Messe" (mess-ah) BTW.

    Once a searchable thread is started I have some questions to ask.

    73

    Steve K9ZW

  • Tim VE6SHTim VE6SH Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017

    Steve. Good point! Yes, Messe is the Exhibition Halls.


    Tim VE6SH

  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Smart man! I am not spending much though, using miles to fly and splitting hotel costs with a friend. :)
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Do you have problems with American credit cards buying rail tickets? I have one card that is supposedly PIN capable (I verified using cardpeek) but I haven't had the chance to test it. I did have a UNFCU visa card that I took out when I worked at the UN but I've been meaning to cancel it.

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