AB2ZO Silent Key

Frank J. Tomesch

Poughkeepsie – Frank J. Tomesch, 74, passed away at home on, Sunday, February 16, 2020, surrounded by his loving family. The son of the late Frank A. and Joan S. Valla Tomesch, he was born on November 3, 1945 in Little Ferry, NJ. On August 11, 2001, he married Lisa H. Andersen in Tarrytown, NY, she survives at home. Frank served his country as a Lieutenant in the United States Army during the Vietnam War era and was employed with Metropolitan Life in NYC as a computer programmer. Being remembered as an amateur radio enthusiast, he was a member of the Overlook and Mount Beacon Amateur Radio Clubs and an official observer for the National Weather Service for Poughkeepsie. Frank also belonged to the Sons of Norway, the New England Weather Net, and also a member of the ROTC at St. Peter’s College. Frank is survived by his daughter, Johanna Tomesch and her companion Miles Uchida, both of Portland, OR, his stepson, Seth A. Pierzkor of Orlando, FL, his brother John Tomesch and wife Kristine of Succasunna, NJ, as well as several nieces and nephews. Calling hours will be held on Friday, February 21, 2020, from 4:00pm – 8:00PM, at the Wm. G. Miller & Son Funeral Home, Inc. 371 Hooker Ave., Poughkeepsie, NY 12603. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered on Saturday, February 22, 2020, at 10:00AM, at the Our Lady of the Rosary Chapel, 185 Hudson View Dr. Poughkeepsie, NY 12601. Burial will take place at a later date in the Gerald R. Solomon National Cemetery, 200 Duell Road, Schuylerville, NY 12871 with military honors. The family suggests in lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Frank’s name to St. Peter’s Church. If you wish to send an online condolence please visit our website at www.wmgmillerfuneralhome.

64 years and 20,000 sessions!

The New England Weather Net was founded in 1955 with the mission of gathering weather observations from around the greater New England region. The net has operated six days a week (Monday thru Saturday) continuously since that time. This Thursday, November 21, 2019 marks a milestone with session 20,000.

Thank you to all who have participated both in recent years and through out the net’s history. The New England Weather Net remains strong and committed to gathering each morning to share weather data.

Here is the recording from Session #20,000:

Next stop… Session 30,000 in 2051.


Jack Caron, W1AYX, Net Manager

Bonus: Here is a recording from Session 10,000 from December 12, 1987:

Listening Using a WebSDR

A Software-Defined Radio (SDR) is a system where many of the traditional radio hardware components have been replaced or supplemented by means of software on a separate personal computer or a built-in operating system. While the concept of SDR has been around since the early 1970’s, recent technological advances and cost reductions have made these radios both affordable and popular among the amateur radio community.

A WebSDR is a Software-Defined Radio receiver connected to the internet which allows for multiple users to independently listen and tune simultaneously across the radio spectrum.

One of the benefits of listening on a WebSDR is that you can monitor a given frequency from an entirely different geographic location without having to actually visit that area. Here on the New England Weather Net the propagation is not always favorable to hear some of our participating stations from the local receiver. This is where listening remotely to a WebSDR will often assist you in being able to copy the net control or other participating stations.

In addition to using a WebSDR for as a remote receiver, there are some other good reasons you may want to give it a try. Here are a few:

  1. You can record and download audio files from the WebSDR server.
  2. You can test your station’s signal strength or check for open propagation in a given region.
  3. You can take it with you anywhere there is an internet connection. Most mobile browsers support WebSDR’s so you can wonder the house or the hi-way and listen to your favorite net on a smart phone, tablet, or similar device.

Below you will find some links to a few WebSDR’s that can be used to monitor the New England Weather Net:

A global list of active WebSDR servers can be found here: http://www.websdr.org/


Jack, W1AYX


 Message of the Day  (Disponible en anglais seulement) CoCoRaHS Blog | Go to end of message

Snow Flurries? How do I report them?

Great question. If you have a snow flurry and see flakes in the air but nothing accumulates on the ground, that is still a “Trace” of snow and should be reported as such “T”. And remember, a Trace of snow means you’ve had at least a trace of precipitation. You cannot report 0 for your precipitation when you’ve had a trace or more of snow. Snow is, after all, precipitation.


Why is the Sun so quiet? As the Sun enters into a period of time known as a Solar Minimum, it is, as expected, showing fewer sunspots and active regions than usual. The quietness is somewhat unsettling, though, as so far this year, most days show no sunspots at all. In contrast, from 2011 – 2015, during Solar Maximum, the Sun displayed spots just about every day. Maxima and minima occur on an 11-year cycle, with the last Solar Minimum being the most quiet in a century. Will this current Solar Minimum go even deeper? Even though the Sun’s activity affects the Earth and its surroundings, no one knows for sure what the Sun will do next, and the physics behind the processes remain an active topic of research. The featured image was taken three weeks ago and shows that our Sun is busy even on a quiet day. Prominences of hot plasmasome larger than the Earth, dance continually and are most easily visible over the edge.

What you see above is something I have copied, with permission, from the Astronomy Picture of the Day, a website that I visit at least once a week (https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap180820.html).  The picture of the Sun above, taken by Alan Friedman, show the absence of any sun spots.  Combine that with the fact that the Gray Line is appearing later each morning as we approach the end of Summer and we can understand why our band conditions have been so poor.


It has been a long tradition in the NEWN to hold a luncheon in August, usually the third Saturday of the month).  It’s been not only an opportunity to put a face on a call sign but also a chance for group discussion of issues (or non-issues).  It has also been an opportunity to pass the reins of Net Manager if a new Net Manager had been elected by the members at the turn of our fiscal year, May 1st.

Interest in the annual luncheon has waned over the past few years with declining attendance.  The usual reason has been the distance traveled to get to the luncheon in Swanzey NH.  So, this year I decided to see if we could expand the luncheon venue to the primary areas of the membership.  My plan was to hold four luncheons on the four weekends of the month of August.  The first was to be held in Connecticut, the second in Maine, the third in New Hampshire (as usual at Pappagallo’s), and the fourth meeting on Cape Cod.

Well, the best laid plans of mice, men, and Net Managers often go astray!  Although I handed the Net Manager role to Jack Caoron, W1AYX, in May, I continued to take responsibility for the annual get together.

The first problem was that there was almost no interest in a luncheon in Norwich, CT.  But I thank Jim, KB1KCA, from East Lyme, CT for trying to help.  So we cancelled the first luncheon.  The second luncheon was held in Hudson, ME and was hosted by Stes, K1WXY, at his camp just north of Bangor, ME on Little Pushaw Pond.  Four members attended:  Jack, W1AYX, our new Net Manager, Stes our host, Andrew, N1WMR, from Bar Harbor, ME, and myself, K1MGH after a two day trip to northern ME.  Jack and I brought our wives (and my dog, Seamus) and the six of us had a very nice luncheon.  The third luncheon was cancelled because the venue, Pappagallo’s, was sustained a lightning strike that wiped out most of their facilities.  The fourth luncheon was held at the Parrot Bar & Grill in Bourne, Cape Cod.  Five members attended:  Tom, WA1KDD, Gene, KX1C; Henry, K1WCC; Doug, N1JBG; Greg, W1SOO; Charlie, K1CB and his wife Helen.  We had a good time and good food.

Hudson, ME:

Bourne, Cape Cod

Luncheon in Bourne MA on August 25th

The NEWN luncheon in Bourne MA will be held at the Parrot Bar & Grill,  good beer and good food.  For those that don’t know where the Parrot Bard & Grill is, it is located on Rte 28A in Bourne.  If you are coming from Off-Cape, cross the Bourne Bridge and take Rte 28 to the Otis rotary.  Take the 1st exit off the rotary and then an immediate left turn and you are on Rte 28A.  The Parrot is about 3-4 miles down 28A.  It is just past the first big intersection.  There are two parking lots.  We can gather in the first parking lot.

If you are coming from Down Cape, take the Rte 51  to the North Falmouth exit, Route 151, at the Mashpee rotary (second exit).  Follow Rte 151 to Route 28A, just past the entrance/exit ramps  of Rte 28…don’t get onto Rte 28.  Turn right onto Rte 28A.  Go about 12-3 iles and the Parrot will be on the left.  Park in the parking lot on the far side of the restaurant.  Rag chew at 1:30, lunch at 12 noon.