The Airwaves
February 2000
SIERRA AMATEUR RADIO CLUB
An ARRL Special Services Club -- RACES -- ARES
P.O. Box 1442, Ridgecrest, California 93556-1442

THE AIRWAVES CALENDAR
SIERRA AMATEUR RADIO CLUB MEETINGS
Every 	SARC Emergency Net
Monday	1930 hrs WA6YBN translator
Night	146.64 MHz (-600 kHz) Visitors welcome 

Feb 9	Board of Officers Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn  1845 hrs
Feb 9	Membership Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn
	Ready Room  1930 hrs
	Program:  Portable Cubical Quad Antenna
	By  Jerry Brooks KK6PA
Mar 8	Board of Officers Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn  1845 hrs
Mar 8	Membership Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn
	Ready Room  1930 hrs
	Program:  Astronomy
	By  Jim Leonard  WA6TFZ
Apr 12	Board of Officers Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn  1845 hrs
Apr 12	Membership Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn
	Ready Room  1930 hrs
	Program:  AMSAT Phase 3D Ham satellite
	By  Mike Herr  WA6ARA
PUBLIC SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES
Feb 19	Twenty Mule Team  Twenty-four hour
	One hundred mile horse endurance ride
	Call Lloyd Brubaker  WA6KZV  375-7245
Mar 18	Geo Bun Buster
	Fifty mile horse endurance ride
	Call Hal Hazel  KM6JM  371-3208
May 13-14  27th Death Valley to Mt. Whitney
	Two day bicycle race
	Call Elvy  NØLV  384-3589
AMATEUR RADIO LICENSE EXAMS
Feb 12	Volunteer License Exam Session
Second	Kern County Library  Ridgecrest Branch
Sat	131 East Las Flores Ave   Meeting Room
Even	Pre-register by 9 Feb   Walk-in ? Call
Months	Written tests 8 am  Code test 11 am
	Call Elvy Hopkins NØLV 384-3589
Apr 8	Volunteer License Exam Session
Second	Kern County Library  Ridgecrest Branch
Sat	131 East Las Flores Ave   Meeting Room
Even	Pre-register by 5 Apr  Walk-in ? Call
Months	Written tests 9 am  Code test 11 am
	Call Elvy Hopkins NØLV 384-3589
FROM THE PRESIDENT'S SHACK
by Larry Merwin KE6YLG
The PTA at many of our local schools sponsors an annual program called "Reflections" which encourages students to submit original works in the areas of writing, art and music. Each year the students are asked to take their cue from a specific tag phrase or theme which is designed to get their creative processes going. I remember, a couple of years ago, the theme was: "Imagine that---."

Let us play that game for a minute. Come along with me, if you will, as we Imagine that the Sierra Amateur Radio Club did not exist. I guess that the first and most immediate result would be that you would not be reading this issue of the AIRWAVES. You would have to go out searching for all the useful information that it contains, like VE session dates, announcements of upcoming public service events, a repeater listing and status update, news of local Ham activities, contact phone numbers and many other important bits of information.

Speaking of VE sessions, it is likely that without the existence of SARC, local VE testing would not be available and you would have to drive quite a distance to take the test for that next upgrade.

If SARC did not exist, the number of repeaters in the Indian Wells Valley would certainly be smaller. There are a few privately owned systems, but the important 146.64 MHz translator and the Rand Mountain 145.34 MHz machine might not be there the next time you needed them.

Finally, there is lots of little stuff that would be harder or just would not be there. There would be no chance for you to discuss your most recent radio gremlin with the radio gurus in the parking lot after the monthly general meeting. Those Ham radio books at the library that are so useful and which would be so expensive to buy would soon grow out of date. All this and much more would be lost if SARC did not exist.

I hope that I have, by negative example, convinced you that SARC is important to Ham radio in the Indian Wells Valley and that it is worthy of your support. This mailing is going out to all Hams in the Indian Wells Valley and surrounding towns that benefit from SARC repeaters. We want to remind those of you who are not members that we are here and cordially invite you to become members. We would value your active participation in club activities.

Quite frankly, we also need your financial support. Repeaters cost money to install, run, and maintain. A good portion of your membership dues will go to maintain the SARC repeater systems. In fact, if you are so inclined, we would invite you to make an additional donation to our repeater fund.

I believe that SARC is an important and integral part of the IWV Ham radio community. I hope that I have convinced you of this as well. Please join us.

MEETING PROGRAM Wed 9 Feb
Jerry Brooks KK6PA will present a collapsible cubical quad antenna for 1-1/4 meters. This portable design is scalable to other bands. With the assistance of Todd Evans W6TOD azimuth radiation patterns for the quad and a Yagi were plotted and compared. The unusual pattern obtained for the quad and the pros and cons of quads versus Yagis will be discussed.

Jerry will also demonstrate a garden variety timer that he has modified for one-time-on, up to twenty-four hour, control of a battery charger. He protects his NiCd batteries with this very useful device.

LICENSE RESTRUCTURING
by Bill Maraffio N6PR
The FCC's restructuring of Amateur Radio licenses will become effective on 15 April 2000. The new license structure will shrink from six classes to three classes consisting of the Technician, General, and Amateur Extra classes. The Novice, Technician Plus, and Advanced classes will not be available to new applicants but present holders of those licenses may renew them indefinitely. In reducing the number of license classes the FCC sought to maintain the current privileges of all licensees. The Technician class will remain a no-code license with privileges above 50 MHz. The General class becomes the entry level license for below 30 MHz privileges. The Amateur Extra class license remains the only license class having all amateur privileges.

The number of examinations has been reduced from eight to four: one code test and three written tests. Element 1 is the five word per minute code test required for General and Amateur Extra class licenses. The physician's waiver for Morse code credit will not be [as readily] available when the new rules become effective.

Element 2 will be a thirty-five question written examination for the Technician class license. This examination will most likely embody the material covered in the current Element 2 and Element 3A examinations. Element 3 will be a thirty-five question written examination for the General class license. This examination is not expected to be much different than the current Element 3B examination. Element 4 will be a fifty question written examination for the Extra class license that will most likely cover the current Element 4A and 4B exams and possibly additional material. The National Council of Volunteer Examination Coordinators Question Pool Committee has not set a date for the release of the new examination question pools. The release date is expected to be announced in early February. Current Amateur Radio study guides will remain unchanged at least until the new rules become effective on 15 April.

Holders of the Technician Plus license who were licensed as Technicians prior to 21 March 1987 can be grandfathered to General class. Prior to that date the Technician and General class written examinations were the same. The licensee is required to provide documentary proof of having held a Technician class license before 21 March 1987. The grandfathering process will be handled via VE sessions after 15 April 2000. The licensee must submit a completed FCC Form 605, the necessary documentary proof and the examination fee (if any) at a VE session.

Technician Plus licensees who have passed the current Element 3B examination and Advanced class licensees who have passed the current Element 4B examination, after 17 April 1999, can be upgraded to General class and Amateur Extra class, respectively, using the previously outlined process. The required documentation is a properly executed CSCE.

The only restructuring change to effect the VE community is that current Advanced class VEs will be able to administer examinations to applicants for the General and Technician class licenses after 15 April 2000. Additional information is available in the February issues of QST and CQ magazines. SARC puts QST in the local library.

Internet locations [Uniform Resource Locators, (URLs)] for more information are:
http://www.arrl.org/announce/regulatory/wt98-143ro.pdf seventy page PDF,
http://fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/1999/db991230/fcc99412.txt ASCII version of previous,
http://www.arrl.org/news/restructuring/ ,
http://www.arrl.org/news/restructuring/faq.html follow on to previous,
http://www.cq-amateur-radio.com

PUBLIC SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES
Twenty Mule Team Horse Ride 19 Feb
by Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV
Three times per year several hundred horse riders descend upon the Ridgecrest area for endurance rides. These rides, not races, extend from 35 to 100 miles and have as their objective to display the fine conditioning and training of their horses. We enjoy a national, and indeed world wide, reputation in the National Endurance Horse Ride Association for our rides in this area. We are one of the first, if not the first, to use Ham Radio Operators at checkpoints for safety and administration of the ride. On 19 February we will, again, assist with the 100 mile, Twenty Mule Team Horse Ride. The event will begin at 0600 hrs at the fair grounds, make several loops during the day and night, finishing at the fair grounds by 0600 hrs the next morning. We will have Hams at each of the checkpoints keeping track of the riders passing through and seeing to it that water and supplies are on hand. This is a fun experience and a very fine learning opportunity in net operation. If you cannot stay the whole time (a few do), but can contribute a few hours, it will be a big help. Net control will be at the fairgrounds and assignments will be made there. If you have a favorite check point that you want to work, call Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV at 375-7245 to participate in this marathon.

Coso Bun Buster Horse Ride Sat 18 Mar
This fifty mile horse ride runs the Owens River canyon in the vicinity of Coso Junction. Last year, radio spooks and goblins kept the afternoon interesting. Help keep Ham radio presence in our community on-going and visual. Sign up for this ride with Hal Hazel KM6JM, 371-3208. A note about signing up: Performing these communications tasks well requires coordination and efficient use of operator experience and available radio equipment. Sign up as early as possible with the coordinators so they can plan efficient use of your capabilities and assets.

RECENT SARC ACTIVITIES
Fire Mountain Fifty Sat 22 Jan
as related by Dave Stone KC6UUR
Who was where: KC6UUR Dave Stone set up the SARC portable repeater and anchored communications at base camp. KE6SMA Mark Slay assisted with the portable repeater and worked the loop 1 water stop. KC6UTF Judy Burns worked the east Trona road check point, the 1st water stop for loop 1 and the 2nd water stop for loop 3. KE6YLG Larry Merwin assisted with the portable repeater and worked the rock-pile which was the 2nd water stop on loop 2 and 3rd water stop/vet check for loop 3. KM6JM Hal Hazel and WA6WGS Bill Seif manned base camp while the portable repeater was being set up and then went to the power line check point which was 1st water stop on loop 3. WA6QYR Bill Burns dismantled the portable repeater by himself. It took three of us to put it up. KF6PLD Roger Sellinger brought the Ridgecrest emergency communication van and generator out to base camp on Friday afternoon and returned it to the police station on Saturday.

What happened at the ride: Thirty-six riders started the thirty mile course and thirty-three completed it. Seventy-two riders started the fifty mile course and sixty-four completed it. The ride started at 0630 hrs. The first rider to complete fifty miles came in at 1222 hrs. The last fifty miler came in at 1730 hrs.

All five check points communicated through the SARC portable repeater. With out it, Hal and Judy would not have been able to reach base camp. Events of note: A rider was reported overdue at base camp by a waiting relative. A call to each of the check points narrowed down the last time the rider was seen and also a report from a motorcycle rider that an unidentified rider had been spotted going back to base. A jeep was just about to head down the trail from base camp when the missing rider returned. One of the horses, pulled early from the ride, spent most of the day tied up to the vets trailer at base camp with an IV bag plug in. Late in the day the vet at base camp decided the horse needed additional medication that he did not have with him. A call to the rock-pile vet check confirmed that they had the needed drugs and a vehicle was sent to retrieve them. The necessary dose was prepared and waiting for him when he arrived. The shot did the trick and the horse recovered.

Thank you to all those who made this another successful communications, public service outing.

RACES RAMBLINGS
New Communications Trailer
Ridgecrest RACES is now the owner of a 22 ft. travel trailer, already converted to communications use, donated by new Ham and new SARC member Phelps TerHuen KF6ZVD. It has a lounge, provision for easy erection of five antennas, DC power buss, a toilet and much more. Phelps and Lloyd recently relocated the trailer to Lloyd's back yard.

Re configuring this asset to RACES use will require some manual labor. Stand by for a work party or two or three.

IN THE MILL
Volunteer Exam 12 Feb
Due to the license restructuring effective on 15 April, there are many Hams wanting to take current exams that they have studied for before the question pools are changed. There are those who want to pass current tests and have CSCEs available for the instant upgrades available after 15 April. And, there are some who want to upgrade to a real, thirteen word-per-minute code Advanced or a real, twenty wpm Amateur Extra and be the last of the high speed code breed.

This has caused a surge in advanced sign-ups for the 12 February VE session. A second sitting has been arranged for 19 Feb. If there are too many applicants to handle on the 12th, the VEs will inform those who must attend the 19 Feb. session.

Please note that this session will start at 8:00 am, one hour earlier than normal.

If you have registered for the 12th, expect a call to confirm your intentions and your test date.

Local Ham Writes Article For QST
Those wondering what David Rosenthal N6TST has published lately might satisfy their curiosity by reading "DXing with NATO" his account of operating an amateur station in Bosnia while he was stationed there this time last year. Dave, a helicopter pilot with the California National Guard, spent from August 1998 through March 1999 in the Balkans flying MEDEVAC missions with his Sacramento based unit which was activated and sent there. Rosenthal packed his Kenwood TS-440 and an antenna, took advantage of the reciprocal operating agreement between Bosnia, Herzegovina and the U.S. and set up a station as T9/N6TST. The March issue of QST features the story of how he ran into another American GI in Bosnia who had the same idea and how they both managed to enjoy the foggy, frigid, eastern European winter with their HF transceivers.

Field Day 2000
Before we know it, Field Day will be upon us. SARC use to put on quite a Field Day, sometimes in the mountains, sometimes in Leroy Jackson park. We have not had a club Field Day operation for the last few years. It is time to start again.

For those who have never been on a Field Day, it is great fun. For a twenty-four hour period we operate portable, virtually all the bands and modes, high power and low. The club usually makes somewhere between 500 and 1000 contacts. One of the great aspects of Field Day is that you get to try different rigs, antennas, modes and bands. Anyone interested? Start talking it up and see how we can make it happen this year. If you are interested, please contact Mike Herr WA6ARA. Remember, Field Day it the fourth weekend of June, the 27th and the 28th. Is Your License Expired of Expiring?

Bill Maraffio N6PR, while collecting addresses for this mailing of the AIRWAVES , compiled the following lists. Are you listed here?

Licenses expired in 1999

KA6ZYM	Jul 11
KC6HBK	Nov 21
KI6NP	Jan 17
KO6SR	Mar 21
N6JML	Nov 28
N6VSC	Jul 11
N6VSD	Jul 11
N6VSE	Jul 11
N6WNK	Oct 10
WB7UKU	Sep 05

Licenses expiring in 2000

KA6JLS	Aug 28
KA6PLU	May 01
KC6DYE	Jul 17
KC6HAY	Apr 10
KC6HUD	Jan 02
KC6IIZ	Jan 23
KC6KQB	May 01
KC6KQC	May 01
KC6KQD	May 01
KC6LOI	May 29
KC6LOJ	May 29
KC6MKB	Oct 09
KC6NGL	Aug 21
KC6NQW	Sep 04
KC6PCD	Nov 06
KJ7A	Oct 30
KK6UI	Dec 24
N6EKG	Jul 24
N6YRV	Dec 24
N6YRW	May 01
N6YRX	May 01
N6YRZ	May 01
N6ZVR	Jul 17
W6YNS	Feb 06
WA6CZD	Mar 13
WB6VGH	Nov 06
WB6VIX	Nov 27

REPEATER HAPPENINGS
Relocation of 147.00 MHz Repeater
Work is progressing very slowly on the electronic and programming reconfiguration. The mechanical components still need to be mated to the new nineteen inch rack.

A source of inexpensively priced coaxial cable has been found. Procurement is in the works.

PACKET RACKET
by Jerry Brooks KK6PA
IWV packeteers now have a net. Hal Hazel KM6JM is now hosting a packet net on 145.050 MHz at 1930 hrs on Wednesdays. Ten stations can be accommodated in conference mode. Monitor the KM6JM beacon on 145.050 for connect instructions.

Please refer to the enclosed repeater listing for the latest information on packet nodes, BBS, etc. for the Ridgecrest area.

ARRL VE TEAM LIAISON NEEDED
Bill Maraffio N6PR, who has been the IWV ARRL Volunteer Examiner team liaison for twelve years, will be leaving the area in the near future. Having an extra class team liaison who stocks materials makes the VE task much easier for local VEs. If you are interested in assuming the duty, call Bill at 446-4165.

VOLUNTEER EXAMINERS NEEDED
With only seven extra class and two advanced class volunteer examiners in the Ridgecrest area, Bill Maraffio, VE Team Liaison, is having trouble finding the 3-4 VEs to man the six, semi-monthly test sessions. If you are interested in becoming an ARRL Volunteer Examiner, send an e-mail to vec@arrl.org and request the Prospective VE (PVE) packet (include your name and postal address). The PVE packet includes a current Volunteer Examiner's manual and other information to get you started as an ARRL VE.

NET CONTROL STATIONS NEEDED
The Monday evening SARC emergency net needs volunteers to serve as control station on Monday evenings. Term of service is about thirty minutes on Monday evenings at 7:30 pm for a month. Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV, 375-7245, is the SARC Emergency Net manager. Please let him know if you are willing to be net control for a month of Monday evenings.

TREASURERS REPORT
	from Ralph Frasier KQ6UU
As of 30 January Y2K
	Share account	$3,397.70
	Draft account	1,871.09
	Total	$5,268.79
	Obligated funds	

	Relocate 147.00 repeater	1,200.00
	Balance	$4,068.79
OLD BUSINESS
Minutes, Board of Officers Meeting
There was no BoO meeting in January.
Minutes, Membership Meeting
by Elvy Hopkins NØLV
The annual Officer installation banquet was held at the Texas Cattle Company on Wednesday, 12 January. SARC members and families totaled thirty. There were three large bags of raffle prizes. Small items from the Roger Meng KA6CIE estate and two bags of Comdex handout gizzywidgets provided by Judith Rogow N7TTH were raffled off using fifty-fifty tickets. Paula Gibeault N6OQQ won the $fifty-$fifty drawing. Jerry Brooks KK6PA led a rousing toast to the new Board of Officers. We all ate too much ummm good food. Everyone had a good time.

FOR SALE FOR SALE FOR SALE
Yaesu FT51-R VHF/UHF dual band FM, handheld transceiver with FNB-38 battery, soft case, MH-19A2B ear piece and lapel mic, computer cable for programming the FT51-R, Yaesu ADMS-1 programming software, manuals, PTT/volume control for motorcycle handlebar with velcro attachment, ear piece attachment for use in motorcycle helmet, throat mic, custom built holder for attaching FT51-R to motorcycle handle bar, 18" dual band mag mount antenna. All $negotiable$. Robert N. Lindeman KE6ZSF 371-9405.

WANTED WANTED WANTED
Free standing tower, 50-80 ft., for tri-band beam and rotator. Will haul 200 miles to Ridgecrest CA. Bob Wagner K6WAG 371-1337

WANTED WANTED WANTED
(1) type 6267 tubes (2) Kenwood MC-60 microphone, Contact Bob Huckins W6UPI w6upi@arrl.net [that may need to be w6upi@arrl.org]

Chris Stewart KC6UTB, treasurer Ralph Frasier has a SARC badge for you. I knew I'd find something to put in this blank space.

See ya in da funny paperz. de NØLV