MEET VK4HF, VK2LES, VK2BLP, VK2MKG and VK2VUX.
They are otherwise known as Rick Rodgers, Les Oldroyd, Brian Peasley, Peter Seifert and Bob Hanson but in the world of amateur radio, their real names mean almost nothing.
The Armidale and District Amateur Radio Club was reborn this month with Mr Rodgers taking on the role of president.
But he had some initial help from Roger Chubb, VK2FGE, who put a lot of work into trying to get the club off the ground.
Unfortunately, Mr Chubb passed away in May this year, but his loss proved to be the catalyst for a new dawn after all.
“I saw a few people at his funeral and we decided to get it going and dedicate the club to Roger,” Mr Rodgers said.
There are now 26 people informally involved.
Three months after Mr Chubb’s funeral the club took its first step when two new two-way repeaters were installed at the 2ARM site.
Those facilities allow members to communicate remotely via hand-held radios on VHF and UHF channels across the district.
With a little extra technology members are also able to talk with people around the world from their own homes.
“There’s something magical about being able to talk to someone on the other side of the world without any wires between you,” Mr Rodgers said.
Mr Rodgers said even the advent of the internet and mobile phone technology hasn’t killed off the enthusiasm for amateur radio.
In fact new technologies have been integrated with radio to allow even greater connectivity.
Anyone with a smart phone, tablet or internet connection can patch into local amateur radio networks from anywhere worldwide.
The club also has bigger plans, including a possible digital television operation that will allow people to tune into visual programs the club will transmit.
Anyone interested can contact Rick Rodgers via firstname.lastname@example.org