The Airwaves
October 1999
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
Oct 13  Board of Officers Meeting
        Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn  1845 hrs
Oct 13  Membership Meeting
        Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn
        Flight Deck Room  1930 hrs
        Program: Ham Radio in operation in Bosnia
        by Dave Rosenthal  N6TST
Nov 10  Board of Officers Meeting
        Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn  1845 hrs
Nov 10  Membership Meeting
        Second Wednesday  Heritage Inn
        Flight Deck Room  1930 hrs
        Program: TBA
Oct 9   Bakersfield Hamfest See article
Oct 24  The Desert Classic Mountain Bike Race 
        Call Elvy Hopkins NØLV at 384-3589
        to volunteer  See article
Dec 5   High Desert Ultra 50k/Relay
        Over The Hill Track Club  Call
        Lloyd Brubaker 375-7245  See article

Oct 9   Volunteer License Exam Session
Second  Kern County Library  Ridgecrest Branch
Sat     Meeting Room  131 East Las Flores Ave
Even    All must register at 9 am  Code test 11 am
Months  Walk-ins OK  Call NØLV 384-358



by Larry Merwin KE6YLG

Well, October is here and it is getting on to my favorite part of the year here in the Indian Wells Valley. Yes, the weather is cooling, but that is not what I mean. Rather, I am very pleased that our public service season has started up again. Now, Ham radio is a hobby that is as varied as the people who participate in it. There are folks who love RTTY, DX, QRP, EME, MKR, AMTOR, PACTOR, ATV, SSTV, SSB, CW, AM, FM, PSK, FSK, AFSK and a dozen other acronyms and, to each his own. But for me, I just cannot wait for September and the start of our public service season here in the IWV. Ham radio, to me, means rolling out of the garage at zero-dark-thirty with a big cup of java and a Jeep full of radio gear. Sometimes it is as easy as taking my HT over to Rocket Park here in town to help out with the Kiwanis walk-a-thon. Sometimes it is the challenge of finding the right location up near Coso Junction and struggling to set up the portable repeater in a biting February wind for the Coso horse ride. Every time the experience is challenging, rewarding and enjoyable.

What do I like about working public service events? Everything. I like working with a dedicated bunch of Hams who, though they may not enjoy getting up in the wee hours, are always there to get the job done. Most of them know a lot more about radios than I do, and working an event is a fun way to learn from them. I enjoy the challenge of working out the communications bugs and glitches that always occur and learning how to do it better next time. I take pride in getting the information out to where it is needed and the sense of security that the organizers and participants feel in knowing that we are out there manning the checkpoints. And I have fun talking to everyone at the event, learning a little something about their hobby and, perhaps, enlightening them a little bit about ours. Have I dealt with any real emergencies? Have I been involved in any situations that even remotely resembled those on one of the more sedate re-runs of Lassie? Fortunately, no. But I have helped to organize water cups for walkers and water troughs for horses and lots of stuff in between. And I have helped to locate bikers, horses, riders, keys and kids that, if not officially lost, were at least misplaced somewhere out on the courses. I know that what we Hams accomplished in all this was really appreciated by those involved. That is the best part, I guess, helping folks out and having fun with Ham radio all at the same time.


Dave Rosenthal N6TST, a SARC member and a pilot in the California National Guard, will speak about what it was like being stationed in Bosnia and operating an Amateur Radio station from that part of the world.

Dave got a Bosnian license and shipped a compact Ham radio station overseas, getting onto the air around Christmas of 1998. He ran his rig over a period of several weeks from a small NATO support base near the intersection of the Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian borders. He will present digital images of his trip and describe some of the special challenges of operating in a military environment.


Desert Classic Bike Race Sun 24 Oct

The Tenth Ridgecrest Desert Classic Mountain Bicycle Race will be on Sunday, 24 October. About a dozen Hams are required to cover the thirty miles of this race. Please sign up in advance. Show up time in the CCCC parking lot is 0730 hrs. Contact Elvy Hopkins NØLV at 384-3589

High Desert Ultra 50K/Relay Sun 5 Dec

Chris Rios, president of the Over The Hill Track Club, has scheduled this annual event for the first Sunday in December. The run will be south of Cerro Coso Community College. Five Hams are needed from 0700 hrs to about noon to provide safety and administrative communications for race officials. Contact Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV at 375-7245 or on the Monday night net.


President, Larry Merwin KE6YLG appointed Bll Burns WA6QYR chairman of the Nomination Committee. Charlie Hawthorne KE6WQR has volunteered and a third member is still needed. This committee canvasses the membership and presents a slate of officer candidates at the November general meeting. If you would like to serve SARC in this manner, call Bill at 375-8566 or volunteer at the October meeting.


SARC will need new officers for the 2000 calendar year. Shifting job and family priorities are stressing some officers and some have served for several years already. As a member of a volunteer organization, each member must realize that being a club officer is a periodic obligation. This responsibility does not require a perfect set of qualifications but does require a willingness to work, learn, expand and grow. The board is a five person, group effort which may call upon expertise of the membership for assistance. Feel free to discuss your periodic obligation as an officer in this volunteer organization with any current officer. Their phone numbers are listed on the front page.


The Bakersfield Amateur Radio Association will hold it's fifth annual Hamfest on 7-10 October at Costerisan Lake in southeast Bakersfield. Prizes, dealer displays, no charge swap area, VE testing, food booths, night time entertainment. Saturday is the big day. Talk-in 145.19 (156.7).
Map and more info


Desert Empire Fair Parade
as related by Mark Rosenthal N6BVP

Eight o'clock on the morning of 11 September found Rlee Peters W6BST, Mark Rosenthal N6BVP, Joe Cloonan KE6SMH, Dave Stone KC6UUR and Judith Rogow N7TTH gathering in the K-Mart parking lot to assist the City of RidgeBurg in marshaling the Desert Empire Fair parade around the burg streets. N6BVP was a roving mission control on his motorcycle and KC6UUR anchored the operation at the reviewing stand in the Bud Eyre parking lot. The other Hams moved to wherever help was needed.

It was a calm, easy day. The parade started, lurched along and ended. After too many sodas, not enough sun screen and a few misunderstood messages all departed to their homes elsewhere in RidgeBurg.

Simulated Emergency Test
as related by Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV

Three SARC ARES members participated in a Simulated Emergency Test (SET) in the form of a state sponsored, hospital, emergency drill on 16 September. Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV took a post at the Ridgecrest Regional Hospital, Jerry Brooks KK6PA set up at Drummund Medical Group and Monty Shinn W6PFR operated from his home shack doing the medium range HF relaying to the San Joaquin valley.

The hospital drill bumped along with a few big rocks in the road. To begin with the HF communications were practically nil. Propagation was very poor and had been for several days. We could not contact either Bakersfield or Fresno to say nothing of Sacramento. Monte Shinn W6PFR tried valiantly to reach Bakersfield through the 146.085 Bird Springs repeater and, although we could hear the drill there in progress, we could not get any response. Finally at the end of the drill, or just after it, we got through on HF via Fresno and got to check in and pass our traffic. SET was quite day. Oh well, let us scratch our head about this some more.

Kiwanis Walk-a-thon
by Greg Roush WA7IRW

Saturday 25 September was a beautiful clear day for a public service event. Some 600 valley residents assembled in Leroy Jackson Park for the annual Kiwanis Walk-a-thon and trooped around the usual five mile Ridgecrest course starting at 0800 hrs. Seven area Hams turned out at 0730 hrs to receive their checkpoint assignments and to get into position prior to the start. Larry Merwin KE6YLG held down the start/finish line at the park while Judy Burns KC6UTF, Greg Roush WA7IRW, Elizabeth Barbee KF6JJQ, Dave Stone KC6UUR, Bill Seif KF6YKG, and Hal Hazel KM6JM counted walkers and called for additional cups and water when supplies ran low at one of the six checkpoints.

Fortunately, no serious people problems surfaced and the walk ended somewhat earlier than usual at 1030 hrs just before the desert heat started building. Thanks everyone for supporting this event, especially Elizabeth and Bill, two Hams new to public service, who did an outstanding job.

Picnic In The Park
by Elvy Hopkins NØLV

This year's twelfth annual, High Sierra Cyclist's, Picnic At The Park bicycle ride from Ridgecrest to Kernville was held on Sunday, 26 September. Nine SARC members supported the start, six check points and finish. Muster was at Oooooh-six-hundred hrs in Leroy Jackson park. Hams departed shortly thereafter with rider roster, briefing sheet, map, picnic ticket and T-shirt. Bicycle riders departed between 0630-0745 hrs and arrived in Kernville between 1030-1345 hrs.

Participant safety and keeping track of rider location on the course were two of the Ham's jobs. Dropouts, no-shows, return-to- Ridgecrest, riding-in-van were situations that had to be accounted for. There were no medical emergencies. Several flat tire were fixed. One rider had four flats! The SARC portable repeater, set up and controlled by Greg Roush WA7IRW, was used to communicate from check points between Walker Pass and Kernville. Bill Burns WA6QYR worked the lonely Helio Hill radio relay point passing messages around the west portion of the course and working into the 146.64 MHz Ridgecrest translator.

Check points and water stops were covered by Mike Alamo KE6WSR and his wife and son, Larry Merwn KE6YLG, Paula Herr N6VGW, Dave Stone KC6UUR, Hal Hazel KM6JM and Judy Burns KC6UTF, who helped at two locations. Greg kept track of cyclists entering Circle Park in Kernville. Elvy Hopkins NØLV drove the SAG van and followed the last two riders from Ridgecrest to Kernville. 'Sure glad they were saving sandwiches for us.

The weather could not have been better for a bicycle ride. In the park at the end, a soda, sandwich, fruit and home made cookies tasted very good. A little shopping in Kernville. A nice, leisurely ride home. All made for an enjoyable way to practice amateur radio and let the community see who we are and what we do. Several riders and bicycle club officers voiced their thanks and appreciation. Thanks to all who helped make this a public service success.

Turkey Vulture Festival as related by Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV

A Turkey Vulture (not a buzzard) Festival! But? But? But? Why? What for? Wellllll --- to raise consciousness about these U-G-L-Y but do-gooder birds.

Hey you Hams! Go find a bunch of them, tell us where they are so we can come and ogle and watch them kettle (circling and soaring on a thermal to gain altitude to get over the mountains). Then tell us when they leave and what direction they go. In the evening, follow another flock of migrating carrion eaters to see where they land so we can ogle again.

Only two hams, Mark Slay KE6SMA and Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV, helped with the Turkey Vulture Festival on Sunday, 26 September. They were not able to be of much help but did well what they could do. This was SARC's first effort in this event which amounts to no more than three or four Hams working for a couple of hours in the morning from about 0730 to 1000 hrs and then again in the evening from about 1600 to dark. It makes for nice family fun since there is quite a bit to do in the area and at the festival during the day when we are not needed. Mark and Lloyd had fun and we hope that we can do better, with a few more Hams), next year.


Caravan to Victorville

Want to visit another amateur radio club? Victorville? Chuck Pierce WA6QFD will travel to Victorville to give his Six Meter Radio Control program to the Victorville ARC on the evening of Tuesday, 9 November. A caravan is being organized to travel with him to the meeting. Contact Elvy Hopkins NØLV at 384-3589 or E-mail to join the caravan.

Amateur Radio License Class

The Cerro Coso Community College class on Amateur Radio (Introduction to Amateur Radio, ET 69ar) has fallen victim to managerial apathy at CCCC. Bill Burns WA6QYR, the proposed instructor, is attempting to re-establish a license class in some form at CCCC or through the Burroughs High School Adult Education curricula. The existing HF and VHF station at CCCC would be a great asset to the class, however if Bill cannot get it going again, an alternate location will be attempted. If you know of someone who would attend a license class, please contact Bill, 375-8566 or E-mail Relocation of 147.00 MHz Repeater Nothing of substance to report since September. The crew still hopes that Santa will bring a "new" 147.00 machine with autopatch and a new 450 MHz repeater to the Ham scene in Ridgecrest.

New Packet Repeater Site

Jerry Brooks KK6PA and Erich Muschinski KA6AMD are still working out the mechanical details for installing Erich's packet node into its new home on a mountain south of Ridgecrest. Mid November is the target date for first time operation.

SARC Needs ARRL VE Liaison

Bill Maraffio N6PR will be leaving the area in the future. Bill has been the ARRL Volunteer Examiner SARC team liaison for several years. Having a team liaison who stocks materials makes the VE task much easier for local VE's. If you are interested in assuming the duty, call Bill at 446-4165. SARC Needs Volunteer Examiners 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 would like to assist the amateur radio community by becoming a volunteer examiner, call Bill at 446-4165 or check into the ARRL web site.

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.


RACES needs donations of equipment to place a voice/packet station in the Salvation Army building at 120 East Church St. Jerry Brooks KK6PA is looking for equipment donations for the station. Equipment required: (1) Transceiver, 223.58 MHz preferred (two meter OK), (2) Omni- directional antenna, (3) RG-213 coax and connectors, (4) Terminal node controller (TNC), (5) PC/DOS based computer (old laptop preferred for 12 VDC operation), (6) Printer (portable preferred for 12 VDC operation), (7) Solar panel (for charging battery), (8) 12 VDC storage battery. Contact Jerry Brooks 446-2228 E-mail

        from Ralph Frasier KQ6UU
As of 28 September
        Share account   $3,351.08
        Draft account   1,467.82
        Total   $4,818.90
        Obligated funds 
                Relocate 147.00 repeater        1,200.00
        Balance $3,618.90


Minutes, Board of Officers Meeting by Secretary Tom Ingram WB6EPD

Sept 8, 1999. Those present: Pres. Larry Merwin KE6YLG, 1st VP David Stone KC6UUR, Secy. Tom Ingram WB6EPD and AIRWAVES editor Elvy Hopkins NØLV The meeting started at 1848 hrs. Larry announced that if ARRL membership applications are sent in by the club, the club will get $5.00 back for new members and $2.00 back for renewal. This was done in the past but is time consuming for the treasurer.

Larry announced the need for a Nominating Committee. Bill Burns WA6QYR was present at the board meeting and agreed to be the chairman of the committee. The ARRL/FCC Official Observer status was discussed. Bill reminded the board that our ARRL section has an Official Observer. A discussion followed on interference on two meters and HF. Larry will get additional information on what can be done.

Potential speakers/programs for future meetings was discussed. Larry has several possibilities. Larry addressed the topics for the general meeting. The meeting was adjourned at 1915 hrs.

Minutes, Membership Meeting by Secretary Tom Ingram WB6EPD

The 8 September meeting was called to order by the President Larry Merwin KE6YLG at 1932 hrs at the Heritage Inn. Fifty-fifty tickets were not available for the meeting. The sign-up sheet was started around.

Announcements: Greg Roush WA7IRW talked about the Kiwanis Walkathon on 25 Sept. Six or seven hams are needed. Elvy Hopkins NØLV talked about the Picnic at it Park bike ride on 26 Sept. Eight hams are needed. Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV talked about the Turkey Vulture Festival on 25 Sept. Several hams are needed. Lloyd also announced that the expected ARES test has not occurred. It could occur at any time. Larry announced that Jim Leonard will be having a swap meet at his house. Details will be provided on the 146.640 translator. Larry announced that Bill Burns is the Nominating Committee chairman. Jerry Brooks KK6PA and Hal Hazel KM6JM provided the program on PSK31. May issue of QST has more information on PSK31. Fifteen amateurs signed in at the meeting. The meeting adjourned at 2025 hrs.


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 for $499.00 Robert N. Lindeman KE6ZSF 371-9405 E-mail


Note: Betty Meng is having medical difficulties and is out of town. The items below are still for sale. When her phone answering machine works again, Betty will be available to complete the sale. Kenwood TM-231A, 2 mtr, mobile, FM, xcvr with MC-48B hand mic $175. Kenwood TM- 221A, 2 mtr, mobile FM, xcvr with mic $150. Icom IC-02AT, 2 mtr, hand held, speaker mic, BC-35 drop-in battery charger $125. Pyramid 35 amp, regulated, adjustable power supply $75. Astron RS-12A, 12 amp, 12 volt, regulated power supply $ 40. Philmore 3 amp, 12 volt, regulated power supply $25. Daiwa CN-465m, SWR/Pwr meter, 140-450 MHz, 15/75 Watt. $45. Pace P5403A SWR/Power Meter $20. Larsen 2 Meter magnetic mount antenna $10. Lafayette SP-25 Headset $10. Call Betty Meng KA6CIF at 377-4119


KLM 2M-2N 144-148 MHz, air dielectric, power divider, New In Box, N connectors $75 Elvy Hopkins NØLV 760-384-3589.


Bill Maraffio N6PR wants two 300-400pF, 500 volt, variable capacitors like the ones used for tuning in old-fashioned, tube, superhet radios. A Hammarlund MC325M will also work. Contact him at 446-4165, or E-mail


Bob Huckins W6UPI wants type 6267 tubes. E-mail

Contacting THE AIRWAVES Editor Elvy Hopkins NØLV at 384-ELVY or E-mail

See ya in da funny paperz. de NØLV