It’s not a Begali, but.…

By Dan Romanchik, KB6NU

One of the questions I’m most frequently asked is, “What is a good paddle for a beginner?” My usual answer to this question is to look for a used Bencher BY-1 at a hamfest or on one of the online venues. You used to be able to get them for $60 or less. Now, however, there are few hamfests and the price has gone up. Now, used Benchers are close to $80.

Ham Radio Estate Sale

Ron Eckton W7RE is selling the following ham radio items to recover funeral costs for a friend.
To make an offer, or for more info, please contact
Ron at w7re (at) arrl (dot) net or 360-599-1131.

Kenwood TS-140S w/MC80 Desk  Mic & Speaker Good $300.00
Kenwood TM-631A Dualband 2m/1-1/4m Good $200.00
Yaesu YSK-8900 Separation Cable New in Box $40.00
Rigblaster Duo w/manual/cables Like New $150.00
B&K Precision 501A Semiconductor Curve Tracer Electrical Good $50.00
MFJ 941D VersaTuner II Good $75.00

Amateur Radio Licensing Exams Available November 7th, 2020.

The Whatcom County VEs are hosting an Amateur Radio Licensing Exam session on November 7th. If you, or anybody you know, is looking for an amateur radio licensing exam session, either for a Technician license, or for a license upgrade, here is a great local opportunity, right here in Ferndale.

If you are interested, please contact Lead VE Richard Dykstra at rdykstra82 (at) gmail (dot) com. Or by phone at: (360) 224-7785.

Attendance is by reservation only; no walk-ins allowed.

Chris Doutre KC9AD


Tech Classes Move Online

By Dan Romanchik, KB6NU

I’ve been teaching ham classes for more than a dozen years now. My specialty has been the one-day Tech class. In this type of class, you review all of the questions in the question pool with the students over the course of six to eight hours, and then immediately give them the test before they can forget anything.

I would hold these classes three or four times a year and regularly have 20 – 30 students in each class. The pandemic, of course, has put the kibosh on these classes. The last one I taught was in January.

Amateur Radio Licensing Class in Blaine [rescheduled]

Always wanted to be a HAM radio operator? Then mark your calendar: September 22nd and 29th, 2018.

Sponsored by: The City of Blaine, the Blaine Police Department, and the Blaine Auxiliary Communications Service (ACS).

Blaine ACS is hosting this entry-level licensing class for people who wish to obtain an Amateur Radio License. The class takes place over two sequential Saturdays in September, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

On Saturday the 22nd , you will receive seven hours of classroom training, with plenty of time for interacting with your instructors and other amateur radio operators (hams) from Blaine ACS. You will also receive study materials and a reading assignment to be completed by the 29th.

Emergency Communications Open House


Saturday, January 24th, 2015, from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm

Official Welcome at 10:15 am.

Blaine Public Library Public Meeting Room

610 3rd Street, Blaine Washington 98230

Sponsored by the Blaine Auxiliary Communications Service

Licensed Amateur Radio Operators

Volunteering for the Blaine Police Department

  • Watch Community Service Volunteers in action. Learn about Blaine ACS and our Emergency Communications Network.
  • Don’t be a victim! Learn about preparing yourself and your family for an emergency. Learn how to assemble a bug-out kit.
  • See ham radio operating demonstrations; talk on a radio; win a door prize.

Blaine ACS is Hiring!

Well, not exactly “hiring”. More like “recruiting dedicated volunteer radio operators”. Due to some recent retirements, Blaine ACS now has openings for new members. If you are a licensed amateur radio operator, or might be interested in becoming licensed, please consider joining ACS. ACS is a group of civilian volunteers who donate our time and energy to provide emergency communications in support of the Blaine Police Department. We offer extensive opportunities for fellowship, personal growth, formal training, and leadership; and we offer year-round opportunities to engage in community events and emergency exercises, not to mention radio station building and operation. If you have any questions, or for more information, please get in touch with me, Chris Doutre, ACS Manager, at

BNSF Offers Hazardous Materials Class

BLAINE, October 23, 2014: Chief Mike Haslip organized this training session at the ACS Training Facility yesterday. He invited Justin Piper from BNSF to present his two-and-a-half hour session on “Hazardous Materials Awareness for First Responders”. Justin is an excellent instructor and the materials presented were first class. We learned about how important it is to contact BNSF’s emergency response center immediately (1-800-832-5452) if we spot a railroad-related emergency. The operators there can provide (by email or fax) all the information needed to immediately determine if a particular train is carrying hazardous materials, what they are, and exactly what cars they’re in.

Ragnar Relay – Northwest Passage July 20, 2012

By Karen Simmons

The Ragnar overnight running relay race began at Peace Arch State Park in Blaine Friday morning with approximately 350 teams of 12 people each (over 4060 participants – many in crazy costumes) and ended in Langley, WA 200 miles later. Blaine ACS Communication Van stationed at Peace Arch State Park and ACS members positoned at four checkpoints along with mobile support provided nine hours of emergency and Relay-related communications within the City of Blaine. Limited sunscreen was needed – it rained!