Signals bring whole world to Steury

Authored by Jim Langham on Jun 7, 2013

Rev. Wayne Steury, pastor of the local Nazarene Church and a Berne native, thinks nothing these days of sitting along Main Street and communicating with individuals in Kuwait, Israel, South Africa and other countries in the world.
Between visiting for hobby and protecting the lives of Adams County residents, Steury has spent much of his life since school communicating to the rest of the world on amateur radios that he has personally made.
“We communicate by code, voice, video or slow-scan picture transmissions,” Steury told Berne Rotary members on Thursday. “We operate through local and shortwave transmissions, repeaters, EME, meteorite scatter or satellite.
“We use base stations, mobile units, portable operations, walkie talkies and even ECHOlink,” continued Steury. “Ham radio is open for everyone who will study and pass the test, a no-code multiple choice exam. One can make good friends and learn many things through communications.”
Steury described amateur radio as a, “hobby, personal communication between amateur radio operators. It is similar to CB or family radio but more sophisticated. Broadcast and any pecuniary use of amateur is strictly prohibited. It requires a license from the FCC administered by certified volunteer examiners.”
Steury noted that power could be half a watt or up to 1,500 PEP with wire or beam antennas. There are many frequency bands, 160 meters to UHF or microwave. Hams can use simple circuits or expensive commercial radios.
Many of the most useful benefits of ham radio is the fact amateurs often take part in the Sky warn weather watch.
“Many disaster times rely on hams for communications when cell phone, electricity or other standard communications are down,” said Steury. “They may provide help during parades and public activities.”
Ham operators, said Stuery, are often posted in fields during severe weather, or, on some occasion, actually chase tornadoes through open country to assist in attracting its history and potential.
 Steury noted that the Adams County Amateur Club provides services like the Special Event station on Swiss Days. He described how he talked to a man from England while he was waiting in line for amusement rides at Disneyland.
One of the most unique aspects of doing amateur radio is the way signals can be directed from glancing off of meteors to actual “signal bouncing” from the moon.
“I have a close friend who often bounces his signals off the moon. It takes two and a half seconds for a signal to actually bounce off the moon and return,” Steury said.
“We can communicate with people that no one else can,” Steury said. “We are working on having a full-fledged Ham Radio station at the (Nazarene) Church. We meet a lot of interesting people and make a lot of friends. So far we have talked to people in 13 states.”
One of the major surprises Steury has experienced so far was the morning he realized that he was personally communicating with famous mission preacher Jim Jones.
“I double-checked the number I was dealing with and sure enough, I was sitting here talking to Jim Jones,” said Steury.
Steury said that the Adams County Amateur Radio Club provides services at the event table at Swiss Days, Field Day, sponsor repeaters, fellowship meetings and license testing. One of their special services is that of communicating with missionaries and other organizations around the world.
The Adams County Club, said Steury, usually meets the second Saturday of each month at 8 a.m. at a local restaurant.

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