THE VERMONT HAM RADIO CONVENTION
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 24, 2018
Holiday Inn Convention Center
Williston Road at I-89 Exit 14
South Burlington, Vermont
HAM-CON is sponsored by the
Radio Amateurs of Northern Vermont.
We are in a super location which is convenient for everyone
and has all the facilities to make this a first class show.
HAM-CON proudly carries on the Milton Hamfest tradition:
36 Years (over 1/3 Century) of Great Hamfests in the North Country!
"and still the best little hamfest in the world!"
Pictures of Previous Hamfests!
Date: Saturday, February 24th 2018
Times: 8am until 2pm. General admission opens promptly at 8am.
Location: Holiday Inn Convention Center, 1068 Williston Road at I-89 Exit 14, South Burlington.
Admission: General admission $9. See below for early entry and advance sales.
Information: Phone: (802)879-6589, afternoons and evenings, BEFORE hamfest day. Or,
Talk in on the WB1GQR repeater on 145.15 MHz(-600). This repeater is
monitored all the time.
Holiday Inn is located at Williston Road and Dorset Street, right at the I-89 Exit 14 Interchange.
From the South, I-89, Exit 14 East. Immediately move to the left lane and make a left at the light into the Holiday Inn.
From the North, I-89, Exit 14 East. Immediately move to the left lane and make a left at the light into the Holiday Inn.
FROM THE SOUTH
From NH and Boston: I-93 North, I-89 North through New Hampshire and Vermont to Vermont Exit 14.
From WMa and CT: I-91 North, I-89 North to Exit 14.
From NY: New York State Thruway or Taconic Parkway to Albany.
Adirondack Northway (I-87) to Exit 20 - Fort Ann. Route 149 12
miles to Route 4. Route 4 north 18 miles to Vermont Route 22A.
Route 22A north 43 miles to Route 7. Route 7 22 miles north to I-189.
I-189 to I-89 to Exit 14.
FROM THE NORTH
From Montreal: Autoroute 15 to border, I-87 Exit 42 to Rt 11 to Rouses Point
Bridge to Vermont. Route 2 South to Route 78 East to Swanton. I-89 South to
Alternate route: Autoroute 10, Autoroute 35 to Route 133 South to Border. Then I-89 to Exit 14.
FROM THE WEST
Lake Champlain Bridge Crossings:
Lake Champlain Winter Ferry crossings:
- Crown Point Bridge is VT Route 17 connecting Addison, VT to Crown Point, NY.
- Rouses Point Bridge is US Route 11 connecting Alburgh, VT to Rouses Point, NY.
|Plattsburgh, NY to Grand Isle, VT||24/7|
|Essex, NY to Charlotte, VT||7 AM - 5 PM|
The ferry crossings schedules are subject to adverse ice conditions. Always check their
web sites prior to crossing.
The Ticonderoga, NY to Bridport, VT Ferry is CLOSED for the season!
From Rouses Point area: Northway I-87 Exit 42, Route 11 to Rouses Point. Look for signs for U.S. Route 2 and
Rouses Point Bridge to Vermont. Go 2 miles past Alburgh and go left on Vermont Route 78. Continue on Route 78 through
Swanton and look for I-89 South. Continue on I-89 to Exit 14.
From Plattsburgh area: Northway I-87 Exit 39, Rt 314 to Ferry. (Runs every 15 min, $10 each direction).
On Vermont side, right on Rt 314 to end at Route 2, right on Route 2 South, 20 miles to
I-89. Go south one exit to Exit 14.
From Crown Point area: Northway I-87 Exit 28, New York Route 74. Go North on New York Route 9N. (DO NOT go into
Ticonderoga or follow signs for Ticonderoga Ferry, as this is closed for the season). Continue on 9N for 11 miles and
turn onto New York Route 17. This crosses the new brige into Vermont. Continue on Vermont Route 17 East to Vermont Route 22A. Go left
and take Route 22A North. At Route 7, go left and continue North on Route 7. Take I-189 to I-89 North to Exit 14.
We have free parking on site. Sometimes the parking area fills up due to other events going on.
Come EARLY! That way you get a good parking spot AND you don't miss the morning activities.
Admission at the door
- General admission is $9. Doors open for general admission at 8:00.
- Early admission is $15. Doors open for early admission at 6:00.
- There is no charge for tables. Tables are first come, first serve. Come early!
- No admission charged for those 12 years and younger.
- Canadian money accepted at par for Canadian residents with driver's or ham license.
Advanced Sales Admission
Advanced sale tickets are no longer available. Please purchase tickets at the door.
The Vendor Room will run from 8:00 until 2:00. There are scores
of tables chock filled with goodies. The offerings range from new to boatanchors and we can never know what jewels
will show up.
Forums will run from 8:30 until 1:00.
Details are in the Forums section.
DEMONSTRATIONS AND MINI-FORUMS
The Activities Room will be home to several demonstrations and mini-forums including:
- W1V Special Event Station. Work the world from Vermont!
- Technical Table - Check out your radio's performance
- Mini-forums - Check the Forums section for times.
- Relaxation Area - Pull up a chair, relax and take in the activities!
HAM-CON CLOSING CEREMONIES!
This is the place to gather after the goodies have been bought or sold, after the forums and after lunch.
Starting at the conclusion of the last forum (12:55), the closing will be a brief activity featuring entertainment,
announcements, acknowledegements and the
(ta-da) the announcement of door prize winners. The closing ceremonies will take place in Forum Room 2-3.
Make sure you set aside time for this event!
Our grand prize is a 1080 pixel 40" LED High Definition Smart TV, courtesy of WCAX-TV.
Other prizes include gift certficates for ARRL Publications, Receiver Kit, Battery Pack and a whole bunch of goodies.
Door prizes will be drawn at the Closing Ceremonies at 12:55 in Forum Room 2-3.
And you must be present to witness our outlandish closing ceremonies and to win stuff! If you leave, you don't get
QSL CARD CHECKING
We will be able to check your QSL cards for DXCC, WAS and VUCC right on site!
Please contact the people below and arrange a time and location at the Convention.
Note: you MUST have the proper paperwork filled out and ready to be submitted to the ARRL.
You must also have the appropriate form of payment ready to be sent.
We cannot check cards unless the paperwork is in order!
For WAS, contact Linda W1MP
For DXCC or VUCC contact Mitch W1SJ .
The Volunteer Exam Session will be at 1:15 in Forum Room 1. All exams (Element 2, 3 and 4) will be offered.
All VE applicants must bring TWO forms of ID, copy of license and CSCE, if needed,
pen, pencil. There will be no charge for amateur radio exams this year.
FCC COMMERCIAL LICENSE EXAMS
Exams for FCC Commercial Licenses (GROL, MROP, etc) will be at 1:15 in Forum Room 1. Please bring ID,
proof of citizenship, FRN Number, pen, pencil
and $50 exam fee. Contact examiner at (802) 879-6589 for details.
- ADMISSION AREA
- Admission to the Convention
- Join RANV or renew your RANV Membership
- Deposit Door Prize Stubs
- Purchase the Vermont Amateur Radio Directory
- RANV TABLE Located in the Forums Lobby
Come here for all things related to the Convention and RANV.
- Hamfest Information
- RANV Information
- RANV FLEA MARKET TABLE Located INSIDE the VENDOR Area.
Bring your stuff for sale and we will try to sell it for you.
- Service for RANV Members Only!
- Limit of 10 pieces per person
- Weight limit of 35 lbs per item, total 100 lbs
- No boat anchors, computers, printers, monitors, etc.
- Sellers to provide a manifest of all items, condition and price
- Unsold items MUST go home with owner!
- W1V SPECIAL EVENT STATION Located in the Activities Room
Visit HAM-CON's special event station W1V as we make contacts all over the world!
We are always looking for operators - no matter what your license class! Stop by!
- TECHNICAL TABLE Located in the Activities Room
Test equipment to provide basic measurments along with free technical advice.
- Basic measurements only: voltage, power, sensitivity, deviation
- No repair services
WHERE IS EVERYTHING LOCATED?
There are two main areas at HAM-CON:
- Forum Area
Just as you enter the facility, just after admission, turn right and you will head down the Forums Hallway.
In this hallway you will find Forum Rooms 1 & 2 and the Activities Room, along with the RANV Table.
- Vendor Area
Continue walking into the facility and go right at the Hotel Main Desk, then left. Here you will find the entrance
to the Vendor Area.
HAM-CON FORUMS AND ACTIVITIES
HAM-CON will have the finest collection of Amateur Radio Informational Forums found at any small convention!
There is something which interests every amateur operator. Stop in on a forum or two and learn a whole bunch of new stuff.
The forum times are tight, so plan your schedule in advance for best results! No PA announcement will be made at the start
of forums, so use your phone or watch alarm to alert you to get to forum room on time.
The forums will run in two different rooms. Forums will run from 8:30 AM until 1:00 PM.
The Forum Room lobby is just to the right of the main entrance.
Forums in Room 1 will generally start around the top of the hour and Forums in Room 2 will start on the half hour.
Forums will conclude in time for attendees to attend the Closing Ceremonies.
Make sure you get to the forums on time. They will not wait!
FORUM ROOM 1
ARRL Laboratory Manager Ed Hare has promised to give us the real "inside" information about what goes on in the ARRL Lab. He has a presentation that is chock full of information about the day-to-day things that happen in Lab when nobody is looking. Ed claims that every word is true, even the tall tales, but some of them involve fishing, so we suspect that a few of them may be a bit, um... well... exaggerated. Ed tells us, however, that will tell a few tales that you will never read about in the pages of QST! Hosted by ARRL Laboratory Manager Ed Hare W1RFI.
THE ARRL LAB: TRIALS, TRIBULATIONS & TALL TALES
ED HARE W1RFI
Ed returns to show you how to do antenna modeling using EZNEC, how to model propagation using ICEPAC and how to analyze your feed line using TLA. Computer modeling is all the rage to increase the performance of our antenna systems. Using these tools he will answer the age-old question: "Which is better, a 40 meter half wave dipole up 40 feet or a 40 meter vertical with 16 radials? The answer will surprise you! Hosted by ARRL Laboratory Manager Ed Hare W1RFI.
ANTENNA MODELING AND PROPAGATION PREDICTION
ED HARE W1RFI
Dominica (J7) is known as the Nature Island of the Caribbean It is a place where Brian visits each year to operate and relax. In the days and weeks following the most devastating hurricane to hit Dominica in 40 years, amateur radio provided life-saving communications despite devastating losses suffered by hams across the country. Brian will describe the events that culminated in the delivery of a $30,000 strategic package of equipment to rebuild and reinforce ham radio capability on Dominica. Hosted by Brian Machesney K1LI/J75Y.
HAM RADIO AID FOR DOMINICA
Brian Machesney K1LI/J75Y
The ARRL has been in the news a lot these days with stories of Director behavior rules, Director candidate disqualification, new board proposals, and the stepping down of the current ARRL CEO. Fresh on the heels of the ARRL Board meeting in January, Tom will explain all what is going on and how the ARRL will move forward. Beyond this topic, he will look ahead to see where the ARRL and amateur radio is going in future years. You won't want to miss it. Hosted by ARRL New England Division Director Tom Frenaye K1KI.
Tom Frenaye K1KI
Testing for amateur and commercial FCC licenses. Amateur exam is free, commercial exam is $50 cash only.
Bring two forms of identification, any CSCE’s, pens and pencils. Don’t forget to study!
Forum Room 1
FORUM ROOM 2
ARRL Volunteer Council Trevor Lewis will present an overview of federal, Vermont, and local law and land use restrictions that affect antennas and towers. These regulations can often vary dramatically by location so you have a lot to consider. You will learn how you can try to best support your own freedom to radiate a signal. Hosted by Trevor Lewis KD1YT.
MINIMIZING BUREAUCRATIC QRM FOR YOUR ANTENNA
Trevor Lewis KD1YT
Learn about ham radio's newest digital mode, FT8. Hundreds of people get on FT8 hourly. We'll start out with an introduction to this new digital mode for those unfamiliar with it. Later, we'll offer hints and tricks to be a more effective FT8 operator. But is this REALLY ham radio? You decide. But the QSL Cards are very real. Hosted by SSB/CW operator Mitch Stern W1SJ.
FT8: THE MODE TAKING HAM RADIO BY STORM
Mitch Stern W1SJ
No single balun (or type of balun) will work for all applications. What kinds of baluns we should use for different antennas such as Verticals, End feds etc? What kinds of baluns we should AVOID using? How YOU can build your own balun for a fraction of the cost of most commercial baluns? We will show off materials, explain where to buy components, and describe how to build a balun. If you don't wish to home brew, then you will learn what to look for when choosing a commercial balun. Hosted by John Grow VE2EQL.
BALUNS - THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE UGLY
John Grow VE2EQL
Marconi is generally recognized as being the father of modern radio from his claimed reception of the letter "S" in Newfoundland from a station in England, over 2100 miles away. Due to the fact that this was supposedly achieved in broad daylight on a frequency around 800 KHz, some have come to dispute this claim. Jeff, from his super station VY2RM in Prince Edward Island not only works Europe on 160 meters during the day, but has actually heard European broadcast stations in the daytime hours. Jeff will join us from his PEI shack during a break in the CQ 160 meter contest and detail the story and science behind Marconi's Wireless Feat. Hosted by Jeff Briggs, K1ZM/VY2ZM.
UNDERSTANDING MARCONI'S TRANSATLANTIC WIRELESS FEAT
Jeff Briggs K1ZM/VY2ZM
We will all get together for a brief 20 minute gathering to meet and say goodbye until next year.
We will be treated to a show depicting the humorous moments of the year past, prize giveaways, acknowledgements and the (ta-da!)
door prize drawing! Afterwards feel free to stay and shop in the Vendor Area and chat with friends!
HAM-CON CLOSING CEREMONIES
Forum Rooms 2 and 3
Forums At A Glance
||Minimizing Bureaucratic QRM (8:30)
||The ARRL Lab (9:00)
||FT8: Taking the World By Storm (9:30)
||Baluns: Good, Bad, Ugly (10:30)
||Dominica Aid (11:00)
||Marconi's Transatlantic Feat(11:30)
||Closing Ceremonies (1:00)
||VE Session (1:20)
We require that vendors and flea market sellers arrive EARLY to set up tables. The room gets too crowded to start
carrying in sales items after 8:00. If you are selling, please buy an early ticket and have your table set up by 8AM.
1. Early entry opens at 6:00 AM.
2. Admission: $15 at door, $12 in advance. We highly recommend buying the admission in advance!
3. Tables are FREE. They are available on a first come, first served - No guarantees made on space or table availability. We usually have tables available, but on occasion we do run out.
4. Tables are reserved in specific locations for large vendors (more than 4 tables).
5. Tables can be reserved at a package price of $25, which includes 1 early admission. This will guarantee your
table until 8:30. There are no refunds for tables reserved and not used!
Get a sneak preview of the Vendor Area by downloading the
Vendor Area MAP in Adobe PDF format. The location
of all tables and services are approximate. Not all tables will be available.
We ask that vendors take all unsold merchandise away at the end of the day.
HAM-COM makes every effort to help our vendors do well at
the show. Please let us know how we can help you!
The Holiday Inn is our Headquarters for HAM-CON.
They have reserved a block of rooms at a special convention rate of $95.
Why not stay the night and spend a leisurely weekend at HAM-CON?
The Room Block deadline is Saturday, February 10. Reservations made after that time are at the normal room rate.
Book Special Rate Directly Online with Holiday Inn
Or else, call them at: 802-863-6363
Here are local phone numbers of other motels in the Burlington area.
This list is information from the phone book. It does not imply any
recommendation, although it's probably
a safe bet that the roof doesn't leak at any of these lodgings.
I-89 exit 14 - Williston Rd
Anchorage Inn 863-7000
Best Western 863-1125
Comfort Inn 863-5541
Homewood Suites 652-4400
Trader Duke's 658-0250
Ethan Allen Inn 863-4573
Hawthorne Suites 860-1212
Ho-Hum Motel 863-4551
LaQuinta Inn 864-4638
Swiss Host 862-5734
Rt 15 Colchester (1mi)
Days Inn 655-0900
Handy's Suites 655-6000
I-89 exit 16 Colchester (2mi)
Hampton Inn 655-6177
Quality Inn 655-1400
Motel 6 654-6860
Downtown Burlington (2mi)
Hilton Garden Inn 951-0099
Hotel Vermont 651-0080
Marriot Courtyard 864-4700
Harper's Restaurant, located on-site will be open until 11 AM only for breakfast items.
There are many, many food locations nearby, within 1/2 mile!
|Westbound (same side)
|| Eastbound (across street)
|Moe's Southwest Grill
Al's French Frys
Dorset St - University Mall:
Mall Food Court |
- University Mall (largest in Vermont) is literally across the street! Bring the family and drop them at the Mall!
Mall opens at 9:30.
- Burlington International Airport 1.5 miles East. Provides a quick way in and out of the Convention!
- Church Street Marketplace 1.5 miles West. Outside and Inside shopping in downtown Burlington.
- Echo Lake Aquarium 2 miles West, foot of College Street. Museum and Educational Center focusing on
life around Lake Champlain. Open 10-5.
The Milton Hamfest started in 1983 as the "Northern Vermont Electronics
Show." It was conceived by WB1BWV, WB2JSJ and others as a way to get
Vermont hams together for swapping equipment and socializing during
the long winter. The admission back then was $2. The philosophy
of the Milton Hamfest has always been to bring hams and experimenters
together for learning new things and having fun. The hamfest has always been organized and run
by a tiny group of volunteers, who, like everyone else, pay admission!
The hamfest started with humble beginnings and an attendance around 150.
Today, the hamfest draws around 300 people, which is a sizable number
considering the small size of Vermont.
Attendees come from Vermont, Northern New York, Quebec and New Hampshire.
A few come from Southern New England as well.
Over the years, some changes were made which we hope will
keep the hamfest a great one. After many years of being an independent
show, Milton is now sponsored by the Radio Amateurs of Northern Vermont
(RANV), and is the ARRL Vermont State Convention. And in 2009, we moved it to a Convention facility.
We have worked hard to bring in more Forum Speakers and live demonstrations. The Forum program at HAM-COM
is the best you find at a small show.
It is the goal of the HAM-CON to keep attendance levels stable
and even show some growth even though hamfests all over the country have
been declining in attendance over the last couple of years. We cannot do
this without YOU! Please make every effort to join us!
Read the article about the 2001 Hamfest in the
Burlington Free Pree
Keep checking back here for new information.
Back to RANV Home
FEBRUARY 24, 2018
Last updated: February 17, 2018