The Airwaves
May 2005
SIERRA AMATEUR RADIO CLUB
An ARRL Special Services Club
-- RACES -- ARES --
P.O. Box 1442, Ridgecrest, California 93556-1442

BOARD    President    Bill Burns    WA6QYR    375-8566   
    First VP    Paula Herr    N6VGW    375-5324   
OF    Second VP    Gene Brewer    KI6LO    446-1315   
    Secretary    Tom Ingram    WB6EPD    375-7950   
OFFICERS    Treasurer    Pam Evans    KC6UUS    375-4240   

SARC Owned and Maintained Repeaters

Randsburg WA6YBN 145.34 MHz (-600 kHz), PL 100.0 Hz, Wide Area Coverage, Emerg. Pwr.
Ridgecrest WA6YBN 146.64 MHz (-600 kHz), Translator, No Squelch Tail, Emergency Power
Ridgecrest WA6YBN 147.00 MHz (+600 kHz), PL 107.2 Hz, Autopatch, linked to 145.34
Ridgecrest YBNBBS:WA6YBN, 145.050 MHz, Bulletin Board, 1200 Baud
Ridgecrest #YBNSW:WA6YBN-4, 223.580 MHz, Node, 1200 Baud
Ridgecrest #YBNSW:WA6YBN-4, 439.025 MHz, Node, 9600 Baud

SARC Committees

Technical Assistance: Greg, WA7IRW 446-4383 Public Relations: Paula, N6VGW 375-5324
Program: Gene, KI6LO 446-1315 Airways Editor: Mike, WA6ARA 275-5324
RF Interference: Bill, WA6QYR 375-8566 Emergency and Public Service: Jerry, KK6PA 446-2228


THE AIRWAVES CALENDAR

Every Monday Night
    ARRL Audio News
    1910 (7:10 p.m.) on 146.64 MHz
    SARC Net - Visitors Welcomed!
    1930 hrs (730pm) 
    WA6YBN Translator 146.64 MHz (-)
   
May 11 SARC Meeting 
    "In's and Out's of HF DX Operating" by 
    John Denson, AI6A 
 
May 14  T-Hunt! See inside for details 
 
25 - 26 June Field Day ! - see inside 
AMATEUR RADIO LICENSE EXAMS
    Second Saturday, Even months
Apr 09   Volunteer License Exam Sessions
    Kern County Library Ridgecrest Branch
    131 East Las Flores Ave. Meeting Room
    Pre-registration ONLY by 9 Feb 
    All must sign in at 9 am. Code test 11 am
    Contact Elvy NØLV 760-384-3589
    E-mail ehopkins@ridgenet.net
    Dates for the rest of the year are:
		11 Jun
		13 Aug
		08 Oct
		10 Dec

From the President's Shack

The spring antenna testing by the winds is about over. Time to put up something new and bigger to see if it will stay up. I purchased the damaged Radio Shack Disk Cone antenna from Bill advertised in the April Airwaves. I got on my Unitimat hobby lathe and built some new elements for it. It looks well, but need to make some measurements to see if it is going to work on six meters through 1296 MHz as the original was supposed to do.

I hope SARC can field a team to work the Field Day coming up real soon. Time is really flying by. The original intent for having a local operation was to induce more folks into learning about amateur radio and get some of the youngsters on the air. That may have to a back seat and just get the kids out to where ever we decide to go. Maybe run off to where ever the DX bunch goes and be cooler. 'They' say we are to be having a hotter summer this year than before. Time will tell how that works out. Any way we need to be getting some younger membership or we will be soon extinct animals.

Another set of batteries found their way into the club meeting last time. Some 30 AH 12v types coming out of some back up system. It is strange how many systems around the area have back up power systems. Any way most of the batteries turned out to be working up to par. More back ups for my home station.

Until next time, 73's
Bill, WA6QYR


Board of Officers Meeting Minutes
By Secretary Tom Ingram (WB6EPD)

The April 13, 2005 board meeting was called to order at 1908 hrs. Those present: Pres. Bill Burns (WA6QYR), 1st Vice Pres. Paula Herr (N6VGW), 2nd Vice Pres. Gene Brewer (KI6LO), Treas. Pam Evans (KC6UUS) and Secy. Tom Ingram (WB6EPD. No one has volunteered to head the Field Day event June 25 and 26. There will be a T-hunt the second Saturday in May. Gene will check with Ron Ogren (WA6PEV) about the Barbecue in July. John Denson (AI6A) and Phelps TerHeun (W6PTH) will provide the programs during the next two months. The meeting was adjourned at 1919 hrs.


Minutes of the General Meeting
By Secretary Tom Ingram (WB6EPD)

The 13 April 2005 meeting was called to order by the President, Bill Burns (WA6QYR) at 1930 hrs at the Heritage Inn. The Sign-in sheet was started around.

Announcements:
1. 50/50 tickets are available.
2. The Treasurers Report is in the newsletter.
3. The sign in sheet was started around.
4. There 2 visitors: Phillip Burum and Fredrick Hareland.
5. Greg Roush (WA7IRW) gave a short presentation on powerpole connectors and the Westmount crimper.
6. There are several conventions upcoming. Details were provided.
7. Bill Burns demonstrated a battery less flashlight.
8. The ARRL Field Day is in June. Still have no volunteers to organize the event.
9. There will be a Foxhunt on May 14th
10. Pam Evans (KC6UUS) provided cookies.

Jerry Brooks (KK6PA) provided the program on EchoLink.

Bill Haight (KD6VND) won the 50/50.

28 people signed in for the meeting.

The meeting was adjourned at 20:11.


TREASURER'S REPORT
Treasurer's Report As of May 1, 2005:  
Draft Account $ 1161.96 
Share Account $ 5,531.10 
BALANCE:      $ 6,693.06 
Submitted by Pam Evans, KC6UUS


Results of April VE Exam

Bill Burns WA6QYR (YES that Bill Burns) Upgraded to Amateur Extra; Hugh Edwards KG6YQD upgraded to General. Tammy Fraiser Earned a Technician License.(KG6YZW)
Congratulations to all.

VE's were
Jerry KK6PA
Keith W6SIY
Hal KM6JM

Thanks To All.
De N6BVP


May Meeting Program

John Denson will be giving a talk on the "In's and Out's of HF DX Operating". Topics will cover operating procedures, logging & QSLing, modes to use and how to use a computer for logging, etc. Should be very informative for the newcomers and recently upgraded Techs.

Field Day

Field Day is coming fast. This year it will be held the weekend 25-26 June. We are in desperate need for a coordinator for a SARC entry for Field Day. The coordinator, along with an ad hoc committee, can choose the location and the flavor of the SARC attempt. QRP, satellite, HF, VHF, whatever is wide open. While we have held Field Day in recent years in the local parks, it does not necessarily have to be so. The location can still be local or up in the COOL mountains! But some planning is necessary. Please contact the prez, Bill Burn, WA6QYR if you are interested in participating.


Indian Wells Valley Emergency Net Report

Check ins
April 11 - 17
April 18 - 14
April 25 - 16

Thanks to Pam, KC6UUS for taking net control for April and May
...Mike Herr WA6ARA


Emergency Operation News Be aware that if you have an emergency situation come in on an amateur frequency that 911 may not work. If the incident is in a county other than Kern County, the 911 operators may not be able to pass your emergency request on to the appropriate law enforcement agency or fire department.

An attempt to pass an emergency message on to 911 that I received from the Randsburg repeater failed miserably. The operator that I got had no idea of what to do with the message. She said that she had no way to contact the L.A. County Sheriff's Dept..

My discussion with one of Ridgecrest's finest pretty well confirmed the situation. He advised that in future situations that are out-of-county to either call the law enforcement agency direct or call the local RPD and ask them if they can possibly relay the message to the appropriate organization.

Whatever happens, don't hesitate to take emergency calls just because of this situation. I am going to continue discussions of this situation with the CHP and with our local Kern Co. Sheriff's substation. Hopefully I can get some more promising information for us all at a later date.

Jerry Brooks, KK6PA
EKC ARES/RACES


Kern County Radio Cutover

Well, its finally going to happen. Kern County will move to it's new radio system starting 0800 April 19, finishing by 1500 on Apr 20th. Fire will be the first to move to their new VHF system, once they vacate the UHF channels the old ones can be turned off and slowly the new channels can be used. The following is the new channel line up for Kern County.

Fire - - -  
    KRN-1  155.880   Countywide Dispatch 
    KRN-2  153.785   Countywide Fireground 
    KRN-3  155.625   Countywide Fireground 
    KRN-4  154.860   West County Fireground 
    KRN-5  151.100   East County Fireground 

Sheriff - - - 
    Metro Dispatch      453.050 
    West Dispatch       460.100 
    East Dispatch       460.125 
    Admin               460.575  
    Metro Tac           453.925 
    West Tac            453.375 
    East Tac            460.225 
    CLEMARS             460.025 

Assorted Depts - - - 
    Probation           460.175  
    Animal Control      453.300 
    General Services/Ag 453.450 
    Roads & Bridges     453.400 
    Parks (maint)       453.700 
    Mutual Aid          453.225

Fox Hunt!

The next Fox Hunt is scheduled for May 14. The start will be the same, at the Heritage Inn parking lot at 9am. The fox for the occasion will be Sam, KG6EMT, the winner of the last T-hunt. We will all have a chance in that our most active hunter, Greg, WA7IRW, will be basking in the Caribbean sun and not able to participate. Typically the hunt will only last about an hour. Hope to see you all there!


Hams At Sea Update

Greg, WA7IRW, will be sailing among the British Virgin Islands from 7 May through 20 May. He'd appreciate local hams contacting him. He'll be using the call VP2V/WA7IRW and will try to be on 17m SSB at 1700 and 2100 UTC (1300/1700 EDT and 1000/1400 PDT) for at least 5 minutes per time period. He will be operating in the highest band that is open at other times, typically around 14.200, 21.300, and 28.500 MHz. He should be more easily heard this year since he'll be using a 32 watt solar panel to charge the station battery with up to 4x (6 dB) more transmit power, about 16 watts with 5-6 dBi antenna gain, and some digital modes (with any luck).

As alternatives via the Internet, IRLP may be possible on 146.81 MHz (per info from 2004) on St. Thomas (US Virgin Islands directly west across the Sir Francis Drake Channel from the BVI) and someone may be active by now with an Echolink connection to the St. John repeater on 146.63 MHz. Look for KP2 or NP2 calls on the servers.

Third-party traffic is not permitted with the BVI, so if you are successful in contacting him, do NOT pass any messages to/from his family at 446-4383.


BPL NEWS!
Resolution Calls on FCC To Evaluate BPL Interference, Review Rules
From the ARRL Bulletin 12 ARLB012

Rep Michael Ross, WD5DVR, of Arkansas, has introduced a resolution in the US House of Representatives calling on the FCC to "conduct a full and complete analysis" of radio interference from broadband over power line (BPL). The resolution, H. Res 230, says the Commission should comprehensively evaluate BPL's interference potential incorporating "extensive public review and comment," and--in light of that analysis--to "reconsider and review" its new BPL rules, adopted last October. If approved by the full House, the non-binding resolution, introduced April 21, would express the requests as "the sense of the House of Representatives."

"We are grateful to Congressman Ross and his staff for taking a leadership position in recognizing that the BPL interference issue deserves more careful consideration than the FCC was willing to give it under former Chairman Powell," said ARRL CEO David Sumner, K1ZZ. The resolution has been referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, on which Ross serves.

The resolution's prime focus is on BPL's potential to disrupt critical public safety radio communication. It cites National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) studies that "have determined that broadband over power line creates a 'high risk' of radio wave interference, and that harmful interference to public safety mobile radio receivers can be expected at distances of 75 meters from the power line where broadband over power line is in operation, and at distances of up to 460 meters from fixed stations, such as VHF police or fire dispatch communications facilities."

The resolution notes that the same NTIA study determined that BPL interference to aeronautical and airline travel communications "could be expected at distances up to 40 kilometers from the center of the broadband over power line system, and that interference to outer marker beacons for airline instrument landing systems could be expected at great distances as well."

Many public safety agencies and support services, including emergency medical services, fire, and law enforcement, utilize Low-Band VHF (30-50 MHz), the resolution points out. According to the resolution, at least 13 states--California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia and Wyoming--use the band for state police operations. It's the primary public safety radio band in nine states.

The resolution further notes that the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials Inc (APCO), and the National Public Safety Telecommunications Council (NPSTC), have urged the FCC to withhold final action in the BPL proceeding for at least a year, pending a "conclusive determination" of BPL's potential to interfere with public safety and other licensed radio systems operating below 80 MHz. It also cites comments filed by the Missouri State Highway Patrol, which uses a statewide radio system with more than 1400 Low-Band VHF users. The Missouri State Highway Patrol commented that the overall effect of BPL implementation would be "a potentially significant increase in interference to the mission of critical public safety communications," the resolution says.

The resolution recounts that the FCC has struggled for years to resolve widespread harmful radio interference to first responders on 800 MHz and "should not have proceeded with introduction of a technology which appears to have substantial potential to cause destructive interference to police, fire, emergency medical services, and other public safety radio systems" without first conducting a comprehensive evaluation.

A copy of HRes 230 is available on the ARRL Web site in Portable Document Format (PDF).
See the ARRL Web site, for more information.


First Annual Long Path Propagation Checkers Dinner
by John Denson, AI6A

The Pacific Northwest Chapter of the Long-Path International DX Society (LIDS) is pleased to announce the first annual Long Path Propagation Checkers Dinner to be held Sunday night at the 56th International DX Convention in Visalia.

The festivities will be held extremely close to the hotel proper but not quite on the hotel property. The dinner will include a hosted bar by the 14.1965 MHz propagation net, and will feature fine cuisine. The fun begins promptly at 23:59 Z and will continue over and over and over.

The featured speaker for the night will be President of LIDS himself. His program will include the latest developments in digital recorder technology for extended playback, voice training for the propagation checker on a budget, injury prevention techniques relate to repetitive voice box stress, recorder playback finger and wrist strain, as well as proper frequency selection techniques for the novice propagation checker including a review of recent studies conducted on 14.1965, 21.2965, and 28.4965 MHz. The efforts on QRM from DXpeditions on propagation checking, and how to minimize interference from DXpeditions that insist on operating near designated propagation checking frequencies will also be addressed.

 
 
  Phelps and I did eventually find where the dinner meeting was being held as shown in the above photo.
Special awards will be given out during the evening including LIDS Volunteer of the Year recognizing the LIDS member having done the most to promote the volunteer propagation checker system. The Long Call Checker Challenge Award will also be presented for the checker with the longest playback digital recorder and of course the LIDS Award of Excellence that recognizes the most prolific checker of the year.

LIDS will once again have their hospitality suite at the convention located in the same room as last year (i.e. the small room with the blue triangle on the door, see www.n6dhz.com/lids.html ), we know all of you will visit the hospitality suite at least once during the weekend.

We look forward to seeing you at dinner.
73 The LIDS Board


Free Batteries!

As many of you know Jerry, KK6PA, is gathering free 7.5 AH 12 VDC batteries. The batteries are good for emergency backup for your HTs. Jerry has checked these to confirm that they are still good for 7.5 AH. Plus you can't complain about the cost. Give him a call at 446-2228 or email at kk6pa@hotmail.com .


Extension Cord Safety

While helping my daughter move her stuff from one place to another home, I happened to pull out an extension cord from a wall outlet that was behind a sofa. The plug was only partly into the outlet when I removed it. My daughter is infamous for running cords here and there to connect up all the boom boxes, TV, VCR, and other electronic stuff she has to have. This time I happened to look at the plug and noticed that the pins were not straight coming out of the plastic plug. The plastic around the pins was brown and melted back from the pins. The plastic around one pin was even turning black. I think it was more a matter of pins not being fully connected that caused the heat to build up on the plug pins and heat the plastic. But it does bring up questions on her care of over loading extension cords and not paying attention to getting plugs fully engaged with the outlet. Hopefully she will be more careful and not be causing a fire with extension cords.

This particular cord set had a helpful tag attached.
Don't cover the cord with anything, like a rug or furniture.
Don't drive, drag, or place objects over the cord.
Do not walk on the cord.
Do not unplug the cord by pulling on the cord, pull on the plug itself.
Do not use an indoor cord set out side.
Do not use if damaged.
Look for the number of watts on the appliance to be plugged into the cord.
See the label on the cord for the specific wattage.
Do not plug more than the specified number of watts into the cord.
Fully insert the plug into the outlet.
Do not remove, bend, or modify any metal prongs or pins of the cord.
Do not connect a 3-wire prong plug into a two-hole cord.

Bill, WA6QYR


Looking for News, Ads or Comments!

I'm always looking for local news for and about the IWV amateur radio community. Also, if you have something for sale or are looking for something else, drop me a line and I'll put it in the Airwaves. Ok, let's say you have some news for the Airwaves. The best way is if you can send it to me via email. The text can be in Word or Works, but the most universal is as text body of the email, no HTML, PLEASE! Email, while fast and easy, it is not 100% reliable. If I get Airwaves input via Email, I will send a note back as a receipt. If you don't get a receipt back, then likely I didn't get it. However, if you don't have email, I can take paper copy. You can send it to me at 613 Rebel Road, Ridgecrest.

...Editor, Mike, WA6ARA, herr@ridgenet.net


SARC Membership / Newsletter

Remember that the SARC newsletter is now available via email, in TWO formats, Adobe Acrobat PDF and in plain text. The PDF version is complete, and in color, but you will need Acrobat Reader to view it. Most have it and it is available free to both PC and Mac users. The plain text version can be read by just about anything! ...but you lose the graphics.

If you want the newsletter via Email make sure you check the proper box on the membership form, add your email address and the version you want. If you have already renewed and want to convert to email, or have changed your email address, drop the secretary, Tom Ingram, WB6EPD, (375-7950) a note, as he is keeping the email address lists.

...Editor, Mike, WA6ARA, herr@ridgenet.net



RACES, ARES and INDIAN WELLS VALLEY EMERGENCY NET MEMBERS

In case of impending or current emergency, monitor the SARC translator on 146.64/04 MHz or the backup simplex frequency of 146.52 MHz. KK6PA, Jerry, the local RACES EC, will coordinate mobilization. An Emergency Net Control Station will direct radio communications. Check in. State your capabilities. Be prepared to go outside the IWV for at least three days.

An E-Pac should contain: your RACES card, radios and accessories, batteries, charger, paper, pen, clipboard, flashlight with spare batteries, timepiece, headgear, sunglasses, spare glasses, your medications, your medical history, first aid kit, severe weather clothing, non-perishable food, 3 gal. water, sleeping bag.

Updated Sun May 22 13:57:58 PDT 2005