The Airwaves
May 1998
An ARRL Special Services Club -- RACES -- ARES
P.O. Box 1442, Ridgecrest, California 93556-1442

The Airwaves Calendar

Every 	SARC Emergency Net
Monday	1930 hrs WA6YBN translator
Night	146.64 MHz (-600 kHz)
	Visitors welcome
Feb 10	Board of Officers Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn  1845 hrs
Feb 10	Membership Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn
	Flight Deck Room  1930 hrs
	Program: APRS  See article
	By Jack Bitzer NL7SX
Mar 10	Board of Officers Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn  1845 hrs
Mar 10	Membership Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn
	Flight Deck Room  1930 hrs
	Program: All About The J-Pole Antenna
	By James Pike KB6WHT
Apr 14	Board of Officers Meeting
	Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn  1845 hrs
Apr 14	Membership Meeting
	Second Wednesday
	Flight Deck Room  1930 hrs
	Program: Wide Area Repeater Networks
	By Bill Harwood W5WH
Feb 20	Twenty Mule Team 100 mile horse ride
	Call Lloyd Brubaker 375-7245  See article
Mar 20	Geo Bun Buster 50 mile horse ride
	Call Hal Hazel KM6JM 371-3208  Article
May 8-9	Death Valley to Mt Whitney bicycle race
	Call Elvy Hopkins NØLV 384-3589
Feb 13	Volunteer License Exam Session
Second	Kern County Library  Ridgecrest Branch
Sat	Meeting Room  131 East Las Flores Ave
Even	Must register at 9 am  Code test 11 am
Months	Walk-ins OK  Call NØLV 384-3589
Apr 10	Volunteer License Exam Session
Second	Kern County Library  Ridgecrest Branch
Sat	Meeting Room  131 East Las Flores Ave
Even	Must register at 9 am  Code test 11 am
Months	Walk-ins OK  Call NØLV 384-3589
Jun 12	Volunteer License Exam Session
Second	Kern County Library  Ridgecrest Branch
Sat	Meeting Room  131 East Las Flores Ave
Even	Must register at 9 am  Code test 11 am
Months	Walk-ins OK  Call NØLV 384-3589


by Larry Merwin KE6YLG

As is customary, this February issue of THE AIRWAVES is being sent to every Ham in the Indian Wells Valley and surrounding communities. We do this to remind everyone that Sierra Amateur Radio Club (SARC) exists and, bluntly, in hopes of convincing more of you to part with fifteen of your hard earned dollars to join our club. Me? I'm as big a skinflint as they come (Just ask my kids.) but I think that the greenbacks spent on my annual SARC membership are money well spent. I hope that I can convince you of this as well. Here are KE6YLG's top ten reasons to support SARC.

  1. Things are always changing Did you know that the autopatch procedures on the 147.00 machine have changed? A repeater list such as has been included in this issue is provided in The Airwaves periodically. You would be surprised how often things change. The Airwaves will help you keep abreast of the repeater happenings.
    Join SARC

  2. Knowledge is important SARC fosters the education of new and existing Hams by providing books and reference materials to the Kern County library. Want to upgrade? Need to check out a design for a new antenna? Confused about the new FCC RF exposure limits? Books, donated by SARC, on these and many other Ham radio topics are available in the local library.
    Join SARC

  3. Repeaters are not free It costs lots of money to build, install, maintain, and repair repeaters. If you are active on any of the local SARC repeaters, you should help in their maintenance and upkeep.
    Join SARC

  4. Great programs In the general meetings during the months of September through June we work hard put together a series of programs to inform, enlighten, entertain and amuse. Recent and upcoming topics include: antenna construction, APRS, QRP, maritime communications, contesting, GPS, DX, moon bounce, packet, microwaves, DXpeditions, radio control, six meter DX and many others.

  5. Help in upgrading SARC is active in many ways to help it's members and others to obtain and upgrade their Ham tickets. Members teach classes, hold volunteer examination (VE) sessions and can provide advice and assistance. Published in this issue of The Airwaves, and periodically throughout the year, is a list of VE sessions in Ridgecrest and the surrounding communities.
    Try IT

  6. Public Service As you all know, the FCC considers public service an important reason for the existence of Amateur Radio. When the big one hits, the lines are down and the cell phone nodes are all clogged, I guarantee that Ham radio will be the most important communications tool around. SARC and RACES members provide communications training by way of formal classes, support of the Monday night net on 146.640 MHz and through providing communications at public service events.

  7. Great food That's right! We are not above appealing to the more base instincts. During the months of July and August there are no general meetings. Instead, we hold a pot-luck BBQ dinner and an ice cream social. Eyeball QSO's and good food galore! Both are always lots of fun.
    Like SARC

  8. Mutual support and a sense of community SARC general meetings provide a good opportunity to get in touch with your fellow Hams. Whether part of the formal meeting or in a parking lot conversation afterwards, the meetings provide an outstanding forum for the exchange of information. People bring up questions and concerns and sometimes even share a good Ham radio to the rescue story.
    Join SARC

  9. The Airwaves Personally, I consider The Airwaves an important benefit of SARC membership. I am terrible at keeping track of the date of the next horse/bike/walk/ride-athon that I want to work. The Airwaves is always someplace close with its handy front page calendar. There are also want-ads, contact names and addresses, information about upcoming and past events, and lots of other useful information.
    Still only $15

  10. Communications That is what this hobby is all about and that is what the Sierra Amateur Radio Club is really all about. I believe that there is no better vehicle in the Indian Wells Valley for communicating, educating and informing. Support SARC. Become a member. It will benefit you and the IWV Ham community.

The program for the February meeting will be a demonstration of the Automatic Packet Reporting System (APRS) given by Jack Bitzer NL7SX. Two laptops, a TV monitor, a video display and a live APRS digipeater will be used. Live statewide APRS activity from 1900-2100 hrs will be shown on the display. The APRS network will be notified of the demonstration by APRS bulletin. Horses, motorcycles, trucks, other mobiles and some UFOs have been seen and tracked in the past. A question and answer session will follow the presentation. How to find the SARC meeting? Just look for the SARC icon on your APRS screen and "come on down."


Twenty Mule Team Horse Ride 20 Feb
This is the granddaddy of horse rides in the IWV. It usually lasts the most of twenty-four hours. Six, eight, twelve and twenty-four shifts are possible for Hams working this endurance ride. Rider and horse logging, calling for the veterinarian, finding lost horses, getting the water wagon to its planned location etc. are a few of the things that come up. Anybody gotta bucketa oats? Call Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV at 375-7245 to participate in this marathon.

Geo Bun Buster Horse Ride Sat 20 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 Doing 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.


Fire Mountain Fifty Horse Ride
as related by Dave Stone KC6UUR

Nine SARC Hams provided communications, kept track of contestant locations and dispatched supplies for the Fire Mountain Fifty. This is a fifty mile endurance contest for horse enthusiasts sponsored by the Valley Riders and was conducted in the desert hills east and south of Ridgecrest on 23 January.

There were three loops comprising thirty mile and fifty mile rides, three water stops and veterinarian stops on the second and third loops and at base camp, the termination of the three loops. Sixty one contestants finished the fifty mile ride and forty did the thirty miler. A seven year old girl on a pony and a rider on a twenty year old horse successfully completed the thirty mile course. At the awards BBQ they captured the youngest and oldest awards.

Dave Stone KC6UUR, the communications organizer, reports that all went well in the day that started before six am and ended nearly twelve hours later. Dispatch of water, hay and horse trailers to the course, location of riders, veterinary requests, motorcycle race progress and myriad's of other bits of information were passed about the course by the Ham communicators. Using the Ham's contestant logs, location could be ascertained to within half a loop. This information soothed worried team members at main site.

Judy Burns KC6UTF worked one of the busier water stops, the first water stop for loop two and the second water stop for loop three. With a choking horse and the nearest veterinarian three miles away, the horse was ministered to remotely by a veterinarian via third party traffic set up by Judy at the ailing horse, and Dave with the vet at base camp. The horse was kept moving and eventually was well enough to finish the contest.

Another situation that was closely monitored by Bill Burns WA6QYR was contestants in a motorcycle race being held concurrently. The motorcycles crossed the horse trails and, in one location, even used the same trail. Doesn't this bring into mind images from old black and white horse operas of rearing horses and upsetting carriages spilling occupants after being startled by one of those infernal, noisy horseless carriages? The presence of a trail monitor with a radio, good horse sense and contestants in both events being forewarned by BLM avoided any serious incidents, however Bill Burns kept the nervous organizers at main site apprised of conditions.

Greg Roush WA7IRW and his son Ben, assisted by Hal Hazel KM6JM tended to the SARC portable repeater getting it set up and on the air before the first horse was very far into loop one. Greg and Ben then worked the nearby water stop on loop one until it was closed. They then relieved Mark Slay KE6SMA who was watching over a very busy point about a mile out from the start were loops one, two and three split on the outbound leg of the course and then merged on the inbound leg.

Todd Evans W6TOD, assisted by Pam Mathes KC6UUS, worked check point one on loop three. From this location, it was difficult to work the portable repeater. Todd and Greg soon discovered that they could communicate successfully on 70 cm. Greg then setup his mobile radio as a cross band repeater into the SARC portable repeater allowing all the water stops and base camp to communicate.

Hal Hazel covered the second water stop on loop two, also the third water stop for loop three, until Alex Higgins KD6ZUV arrived. When loop one closed and Greg moved, Hal set up cross band for Todd on loop three. Eventually Hal took over at the loop three water stop, and by a combination of high power and a high gain antenna, managed to get into the portable repeater.

In addition to the SARC portable repeater located remotely, the City of Ridgecrest's Multi-Purpose Van with it's generator trailer were set up at main site for extended communications capabilities and protection from natural elements during this twelve hour event. Jerry Brooks, the van's constructor and chief operator, coordinated with Bill Burns for use at base camp. Bill drove it out Friday and helped Dave Stone put it into operation. Bill also assisted with shut down and return to the police station.

Near the end of the day, contestants (the human ones) were asking about the threatening weather ominously spilling over the Sierra Nevada a few miles to the west and what road conditions might be for their drive home. Two Ridgecrest hams monitoring the local SARC 146.64 MHz translator were contacted and asked to check. Up-to-the minute weather and road conditions were supplied hot off the internet by Jerry Brooks KK6PA and Elvy Hopkins NØLV.

This event allowed SARC Hams to get on-the-job experience in solving communications problems. Cross band operation from a handheld to a higher powered mobile transceiver was used by five Hams as they roamed about their assigned check points. Cross band was also used for a relay to the portable repeater. The portable repeater worked flawlessly after it's recent heavy maintenance by Greg Roush. The Multi-Purpose van and generator got a needed periodic shakedown and Jerry Brooks was very proud of it's performance. The local SARC 146.64 MHz translator and the autopatch on the SARC 147.00 MHz repeater were used to contact persons in Ridgecrest. With emergency preparedness in mind, the Fire Mountain Fifty was good practice.

HAM Books to Library
SARC has provided to the Ridgecrest branch of the Kern County Library two more amateur radio books. The first is the current ARRL "General Class License Manual," third edition, with the July 1998 revised question pool covering RF safety.

The second is ARRL's "RF Safety and You." This 316 page tome treats the new RF safety issue in depth with theory, text of the regulations and bulletins, charts, tables and evaluation worksheets.

These additions to the thirty other SARC presented amateur radio books must travel the long and torturous maze of the Kern county library acquisition system before being returned to the Ridgecrest branch.

All Hams are encouraged to visit the library and scan the wide variety of amateur radio books that SARC has provided to the Indian Wells Valley community. Some book subjects are: getting started in Ham radio, license study guides, antennas, transmission lines, equipment construction, satellite communication and the ARRL's two most famous handbooks the "Handbook for Radio Amateurs" and the "Antenna Book."


911 Now Working on 147.00 Repeater
Dialing 911 on the SARC 147.00 MHz repeater's autopatch has not worked since the leading "9" before each dialed number requirement was dropped. Oops! Jim Kusznir KE6DWM, with the help of Mike Hugo KA6OIJ, via e-mails, has remedied this omission.

Jim has also allowed the transmission of touch tones through the phone lines so that local pager 800 numbers can be dialed.


SARC Net Needs Control Stations
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.

CCCC HAM Radio Class
For those of you expecting a Ham radio technician license class at Cerro Coso Community College this spring semester, Mike Cash KN6IS reports that this class will given in the summer session. Pass the word to those of your friends who want to get a good electronics background for the technician license. A special VE session is conducted by SARC for this class. Results are excellent.

SARC Web Pages
Two SARC members have web pages dedicated to amateur radio and especially SARC. The Airwaves, the constitution, the VE schedule, the repeater list and other information of interest to Hams can be viewed at two internet URLs. Erik van Bronkhorst KC6UUT has his site at and Larry Jenkins KN6WI has his at

RF Safety Calculator
The University of Texas Amateur Radio Club web site has an RF safety calculator. The URL is


12 Motorola VHF Mitrek, 12 Motorola UHF Mitrec, 12 VHF Micor, Motorola repeater hardware. Excellent condition. Not stolen - bill of sale available. Phil Stettle, Thatcher AZ 520-428-7966


Drake L7AM, SerNo 147, HF 1kW, linear power amplifier, 160-10 mtrs (no WARC bands), xlnt cond, with Drake L7PS, SerNo 204, companion power supply, xlnt cond, in/out cables attached, manual, orig invoice, 220 vac plug & receptacle $900

Drake TV-3300LP low pass filter, HF, 1 kW, New In Box, 80 dB @ 41 MHz, UHF connectors, 52 Ohm, original invoice $40 KLM 2M-2N 144-148 MHz, air dielectric, pwr divider, New In Box, N connectors $75

Alliance HD-73, 2 speed antenna rotator and control box, 11 sq. ft. xlnt cond, mast mount, manual, invoice $150

Contacts: Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV 760-375-7245 & Elvy Hopkins NØLV 760-384-3589. Packing and shipping will be paid by buyer. All equipment will be sold AS IS. All equipment has been well cared for, shows no abuse, worked when last used five years ago and has been properly stored. This equipment belongs to an incapacitated Ham. Sale will help finance medical expenses.


Kenwood TH-21AT 2 mtr handheld small (5"x2.5"x1.2") 150mw lo pwr, 1.7w hi pwr, wall charger, DC-21 car pwr supply-$50

Honeywell Rediline motor-generator 12v in 120vac 60 Hz sine out 500w $50. Bill WA6QYR 760-375-8566, [email protected]


MFJ Electronic Keyer Paddle Model MFJ-422B. Uses Curtis 8044 ABM Keyer IC. Manual says 8-50 WPM but will do much slower than 8 WPM if required. Excellent physical and working condition. $75.00

MFJ Differential-T Antenna Tuner, model MFJ-986. Covers 1.8-30 MHz. Rated at 3 kW PEP. Lighted peak or average reading, cross-needle SWR/Wattmeter with 200/50W and 2000/500W ranges. Sides and top have minor scratches. Perfect working order. $180.00

Timewave DSP-59+ DSP Audio Noise Reduction Filter. Version 3.0 firmware. Reduces random noise, eliminates heterodynes. 225 combinations of high and low pass filters for voice and digital modes. One tiny scratch on top cover. $180.00

Heathkit SB-1000 1kW SSB PEP/850W CW linear amplifier. Operates 10, 12, 15, 20, 40, 80, & 160 meter bands. Uses a single 3-500Z tube. Control cables for Kenwood transceivers. Must see to appreciate. Kit put together by a master kit-builder perfectionist fanatic. Original owner treated with TLC. Super Mint Condition. $500. Hal Hazel KM6JM 760-317-3208


HF antenna balun, 1:1 ratio, 200 Watts Current balun preferred. Jerry Brooks KK6PA 760-446-2228

See ya in da funny paperz. de NØLV