History Of The W4GGM

Maury Amateur Radio Club

P.O.Box 1871

Columbia, TN 38402

w4ggm@qsl.net

VHF:147.12+ MHz (Tone 127.3) ; UHF:443.175+ MHz (Tone 100.0)

The Maury Amateur Radio Club (MARC) was originally founded in 1976 by several HAM operators in the area. Some of the members were John Alden K4HRY (SK), Finas Allen W4GGM (SK), Bill Arnett WB4EBR, Shannon Arnett WA4EBU, Fred Chappell WB4WCB (SK), Clyde Denton K4UXK (SK), Jim Dooley WB4HCG, Hal Greene W4CUQ (SK), Melvin Hindman WA4WGN now AE4FP, Dr. Clay Miller WA4RGQ, Ernie Parker WB4HWW (SK), Hushel Parrish K4WKA (SK), Ken Riley WA4ZYX (SK), George Russell WB4JCR (SK), Charlie Spencer WB4VXY (SK), Tom Wade WB4VXW (SK), Billy Wilson WB4ELS.

The first repeater license had the call of WR4AIX and was issued Feb.10, 1978 to Clyde Denton K4UXK (SK). Later the Club operated under the call of Ken Riley WA4ZYX (SK), then a new Club call of KF4ADU was issued in June of 1995. The repeater was operated under this call until it received the call on Jan.6, 1998 of Finas Allen W4GGM (SK), a founding member of the MARC, who became a silent key on Aug.28 1993.

The MARC members own and operate the W4GGM repeater which is located 2 miles south of COLUMBIA, TN. The repeater (new one installed on 7/8/06), operates with a transmit frequency of 147.12 mhz., and receives on 147.72 mhz with a tone of 127.3 and is open to all Amateur Radio operators.

The MARC members now own and operate another repeater on 443.175 with a tone of 100 which is also operated under the club call of W4GGM. This repeater is located at the same location as the 2 meter, and is open to all Amateur Radio operators.

Membership in the MARC is $25.00 for 1 year per family. This includes all licensed HAM family members that are currently living in the home. The membership entitles each family 1 vote on anything brought before the Club, including elections and etc. Membership dues are due the first day of April each year and end on the last day of March the following year. Please download and read the MARC BYLAWS for more details. Money collected for membership, auctions, and etc., goes into the Club treasury to pay for repairs on repeater, equipment for emergency services, picnics, and other functions such as Field Day dinners, and etc. We would like to stress however that you DO NOT have to be a member of the MARC to use the repeater. The repeater is ALWAYS an open repeater to ALL amateur operators ! Feel free to use it anytime you are in the area. For questions on membership or anything about the MARC please CONTACT US at anytime. If you are interesting in joining the MARC, you can download a MEMBERSHIP FORM.

The Club has a NEWSLETTER online and also distributed to anyone in the MARC that does not have internet access or request one. The newsletter was started by George Russell WB4JCR (SK) in January 1993, who did a outstanding job of it until it was taken over by Bill Milligan K4BX in February 1997. Bill is now doing a wonderful job on the publication. Any articles and/or inquiries for the newsletter should be sent to Bill. He would love to hear from you !

The MARC has many things going on during the year, from monthly CLUB MEETINGS and SATURDAY BREAKFAST to contest and FIELD DAY activities. Visit the different pages for CLUB NETS, meetings, and other activities. There is always something fun and exciting going on in the MARC !

If you are HAM operator visiting the Middle Tennessee area, make sure and get on the repeater and chat with the local operators. You will always be welcome !

MARC Celebrated It's 30th Anniversary in 2006

The Following Was Taken From The MARC April 2009 Newsletter

Happy 30th Anniversary MARC It was a good year in 1976 for amateur radio in Maury County. There were about 30 Hams in the area (see list below) and most of them were active on HF or 6-meters (AM, FM, SSB), or 2-meter FM simplex. Meetings were being held monthly with good attendance. It was during one of these meetings that it was decided that our radio club should be called the Maury Amateur Radio Club, MARC for short. I don't remember for sure, but it was probably in April 1976 when that decision was made. Also during those meetings, much talk was going on about 2-meter repeaters and many felt that MARC should own a good working repeater like some of those in the Nashville area. Clyde Denton K4UXK along with others had been experimenting with repeaters for a few years but without the advantage of a duplexer, results had not been good. Spearheaded by Finis Allen, W4GGM and myself we presented to the club what we thought needed to be done in order for MARC to have a good working repeater for the area. Many at the meetings agreed and as a result, the following bulletin was sent out to all local hams on August 18, 1976.

 

BULLETIN!

“In an effort to get a good working 2-Meter Repeater station on the air to serve all hams in Maury and surrounding counties, the following group has agreed to finance its cost, installation, maintenance and pay utilities. It is estimated that this total cost for the first three years will run about $3,000.00.

W4CUQ Harold S. Greene, Hampshire

WB4EBR William (Bill) Arnett, Columbia

WB4ELS William (Bill) Wilson, Lawrenceburg

W4GGM Finis B. Allen, Mt. Pleasant

WB4HCG Jimmy R. Dooley, Columbia

K4HRY John D. Alden, Jr., Columbia

WB4HWW Ernest E. Parker, Columbia

WB4JCR George T. Russell, Columbia

WA4RGQ Dr. Clay R. Miller, Columbia

K4UXK Clyde M. Denton, Culleoka

WB4VXW Tom Wade, Lewisburg

WB4VXY Raybon C. Spencer, Culleoka

WB4WCB Fred L. Chappell, Columbia

K4WKA Hushel L. Parrish, Jr., Culleoka

WA4ZYX Ken Riley, Columbia

*********** Melvin Hindman, Lynnville

*********** Doyle Wayne Lynn, Culleoka

 

Anyone wishing to make a donation toward the cost of the repeater may do so at any time.

It is, of course, not necessary to make a donation in order to use the repeater. We want all hams in the area to feel free to use the repeater.

The call letters of the repeater is WR4AIX. This call is registered to Clyde Denton, K4UXK.

The repeater is now in service and operating on 146.25 IN and 146.85 OUT. As soon as new crystals arrive it will be changed to its permanent frequency of 147.72 IN and 147.12 OUT. Anyone wishing to order crystals for their rigs should order 147.72 Mhz TRANSMIT and 147.12 Mhz RECEIVE.

The repeater is made up of GE MASTR Transmitting and receiving strips. All solid state except for the driver and final tubes. The output is about 70 watts. The COR, 3-Minute Timer and ID’er is also solid state. The 3-minute timer resets each time a signal to the receiver drops out. It will ID periodically when in use. It is now equipped with a Data Signal RAP-2 Autopatch which enables any ham with a touch tone pad to make local calls through the Bell System. It is also equipped with a dial in feature which enables anyone to call the repeater number and be answered by a mobile unit equipped with a touch tone pad. To connect the autopatch into service, you dial *, to disconnect it you dial #.

The repeater is now located at the residence of George Russell and due to the elevation, the present range is quite limited. There is also a receiver desensing problem due to using two antennas with inadequate vertical separation. This further decreases the range that it can cover. It is expected that both these problems can be overcome when the repeater is moved to Nod Hill (1009-Ft.) and the duplexer installed. The Phelps Dodge duplexer is due to be shipped from the factory on August 27. It is hoped that the repeater can be moved up on the hill within a couple of weeks after the duplexer arrives.

A special thanks goes out to Dr. James Fitts for giving the club permission to locate the repeater on his property.”

As a side note, the reference to Nod Hill is where the Claremont Subdivision now stands. A 50-Ft selfsupporting tower and small building was donated to the club for use at the site. Thanks to Melvin Hindman, WA4WGN who had access to a boom truck, the tower was put up quickly and the repeater went on the air at its new location on September 11, 1976 at 12:15 PM. It worked great and the coverage was excellent.

Everything went well with the repeater until 1987 when the developer of the Claremont Subdivision ordered us to remove the tower from his property. Jim Dooley, WB4HCG came to our rescue by offering us his spot on the county tower which was at the very top of the 300-Ft tower. This was great, but it cost the club $1,600.00 for 320-Ft of 7/8" Hardline, mounting bracket, connectors and tower service to install. Much improvement was noticed in the repeater performance after this move was made.

More bad news came again in May 1991 when lightning destroyed our Stationmaster antenna and repeater controller costing the club almost $900.00 for replacement and repairs. We were however, fortunate in that the hardline received no damage. That same cable is still in use after 30 years.

73's from, George Russell, WB4JCR

List of Maury County Area Hams in 1976

K4HRY John Alden

W4GGM Finis Allen

WA4ZJM Bob Brown, Jr.

WB4WCB Fred Chappell

WB4HCH Gene Davidson

K4UXK Clyde Denton

WB4IRN Virgie Denton

WB4HCG Jimmy Dooley

WA4ZYW Joe Graham

W4CUQ Hal Greene

WB4WCA George Hanvy

WA4ZSY Bobby Hedrick

WN4SYK William Hill

W4YED Floyd Lovett

WA4RGQ Clay Miller

K4WKA Hershel Parrish

WA4OOG Eddie Richmond

WB4MIT Becky Richmond

WB4WDF Marvin Ricketts

WA4ZYX Ken Riley

WB4JCR George Russell

WA4ZXN Jimmy Southall

W4YLF Bob Stokes

WB4QIC Bill Weatherford

WA4FMN Mac West

WA4OYE Paul Craft

WB4VXY Raybon Spencer

Who was W4GGM?????     from Doug KE4VBG

Randy Miller WD4OMP with Finas Allen W4GGM

I first met Finis Allen when I was a wide eyed teenager hanging around K4UXK Clyde Denton’s shack. Finis was a very friendly, mountain of a man that seemed to be around 6’ 2” tall. He traveled around with his constant companion K9DOG, and the dog was very friendly too. He was a soft spoken man with a very distinct Slow Southern Drawl. Finis was always willing to help out, and I even remember him donning a Santa Suit one year to play Santa for the children at our Church. I always enjoyed listening to Finis and Clyde discussing the Finer points of Ham Radio equipment and credit these gentlemen for peaking my interest in Ham Radio.

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