Easy Open Air Cipher

Today I was looking again at an easy way to hide in plain site information I would want to send over VHF/UHF but do not want anyone to know.

I had previously looked at One Time Pads but gave up on them because of the difficulty of teaching someone how to use them.  Without practice it’s just not intuitive so I’ve abandoned the idea more than once.

A close cousin is the DRYAD Pad.  (https://goto.pachanka.org/crypto/dryad-pad)

The link above will allow you to generate your pads offline so it could be used off grid to make more, but I’ve pre-made (31) sets of them with unique ID’s for each day of the month.

One set is full letter size and in the comms binder at home, the other shrunk down on Rite-In-Rain paper for in the field.

This simple cipher pad is easy to learn and does what I need easily, which is primarily to send UTM Coordinates to update my base on my location and send short simple pre-set numeric message codes.

Broken into (5) character sets makes it easy to decode for the other users with the corresponding DRYAD since UTM is five / five for Long / Lat making my current location easy to find on a corresponding 1:24000 map I had printed from mytopo.com.

Anything shorter or longer will be a 3 digit preset code.


If you are interested and have read over how the system works at (https://goto.pachanka.org/crypto/dryad-pad) and want to take the challenge, try locating a local fishing spot based off this radio transmission…

ME > “Base, this is Kilo One,  I authenticate Echo  Romeo“.

BASE > “Kilo One, I authenticate Bravo“.

Me > “Base, message as follows… YXJVI    EDCYM“.  (sounded out in Int. Phonetics)

BASE > “Kilo One, confirming YXJVI    EDCYM“.  (sounded out in Int. Phonetics)

click to enlarge

Can you find my location based off the DRYAD above?

Hover over the xxxxx to see the decoded numbers and check your work.

UTM Zone = 10Txxxxx and Easting = 48xxxxx

Or click on this Google Earth.kmz file.

Works for me, hope it helps someone else.

PS> Even though this is a simple method, you still NEED TO PRACTICE it.  When the wife and I go on a walk, we pick a spot and get the UTM, then I have here decode it and mark it on the map at home.  Just like starting a fire in the rain, it takes DOING IT to be sure you can do it!

My Food Storage Spreadsheet

Recently started to re-inventory the pantry and decided to make a sheet to keep better track.  Without it I find it easy to lose track of how much we have gone through.Should be a good starting point if you don’t have one already.  I have included calorie info for the items I stock and a sudo “survival days worth” calculator based on number of adults and youths in party.


FT-817 Pack-It Reference Book

Prepared by Hugh McCully, VE3AYR



There is no doubt about it, the FT-817(ND) is a feature-filled rig. But, can you remember how to do it all? And, what information will you have with you to help explore those features? Wherever you are, you can have at your fingertips all the information you need to use the many FT-817(ND) features.

The Second Edition contains 162 pages eighteen more pages than before; four more pages of Index for a total of thirteen index pages; eleven additional topics, and expansion of some existing topics, e.g., Control Software. The sequencing of topics within the book has been adjusted to bring related topics closer together. The First Edition was great and the Second Edition is even better!