Voice of the Sierra Amateur Radio Club




PresidentMark BallKE6IFD375-3077
First Vice PresidentDavid StoneKC6UUR375-1730
Second Vice PresidentMike CashKN6IS375-4441
TreasurerMark RosenthalN6BVP375-2521
SecretaryLLoyd BrubakerWA6KZV375-7245



by Mark Ball KE6IFD

Where did Summer go? It seems like we just got started on vacation and already it's fall. Several events happened during our summer vacation: Field Day '96, Installation of the Randsburg repeater, and the West Coast Power Outage are most notable. Club members also got together July 8 at Ron Ogren's home for the annual SARC Bar-B- QSO. Later in the summer (August meeting) several club members got together for what was supposed to be an Ice Cream Social, but seemed to be more of a Chili Bean Social. Many of the attendees found that besides ice cream, Al & Reeds makes some pretty good chili dishes.

Meanwhile, I am getting used to doing homework again. I've finally given up procrastinating about going back to school and have enrolled in and a class at Cerro Coso this semester. Because the class is on Monday and Wednesday evenings, I am unable to attend club functions either of those days. I would like to take this opportunity to publicly say "Thanks." to Dave Stone for filling in during my absence.

Although I don't have much free time lately, I was able to accept an invitation to talk to my son's Cub Scout Pack about Amateur Radio this past Tuesday. We talked about licensing requirements, the usefulness of Amateur Radio during emergencies, and demonstrated the 147.00 auto-patch. We also used a packet station to connect to a node in San Luis Obispo via the local JA1MAR (W6EFB) node and the KRVARC (KE6TTF-7) node at Shirley Peak. The kids were very interested and some think that they may be interested in knowing more about Amateur radio.

After seeing the response of the Cub Scout Pack, I wonder if any of you would be interested in forming a group to give presentations about amateur radio to local clubs and schools. Give me a call if you are interested. I'll do whatever I can to help out if there is anyone interested. 73s

Do you know what this Q-Signal means? Want to know about QRP (RF power output less than 5 watts)? Don't miss the November 18 meeting and Mike Herr's QRP program. For you DIY (Do It Yourself) people, QRP is a hotbed of user assembled projects, kits and many other magic small boxes. QRP is an inexpensive way to learn electronic assembly and circuit theory, and really sharpen your on-the-air operating procedures. Yes, there are many WAS, WAC and DXCC certificates won by dedicated QRPers. Come hear Mike, ask questions and see some QRP hardware.

Election of the 1997 SARC Officers
Election will be held during the December meeting. The Nominating Committee is seeking SARC officer candidates. Please consider serving SARC as an officer or committee member. Want to know more? Contact Jerry Brooks KK6PA 446-2228, Mike Cash KN6IS 375-4441 or Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV 375-7245

Sierra Sands Adult School Amateur Radio Licensing Classes
Classes will be held in October and March of this school year. The first class will be on 18, 19, 20 and 26 October and the second on the 21, 22, 23 February and 1 March. The last class in each case is the FCC exam for the amateur radio license.

Students are expected to obtain the necessary materials and begin studying before the class. These are not lecture classes. Practice exams will be given and questions answered concerning those areas in which the students are having troubles.

Hams in the valley who know individuals who have always wanted to become amateur radio operators are encouraged to become Elmers and push then along in the right direction.

Information and assistance can be had by calling the Adult School at 446-5872 and Lloyd Brubaker at 375-7245.


Jerry Brooks KK6PA, SARC president for 1995, had some unfinished business when his term expired. This was to see SARC donate a package of amateur radio related books to the local Ridgecrest Branch of the Kern County Library. Jerry's plan was completed on 5 June when the team of Jerry, Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV and Elvy Hopkins ND6Q formally presented the books to Mrs. Marsha Lloyd, Branch Librarian. Mrs. Lloyd has placed these amateur radio related books in one location, 621.38 thru 621.484, (with exception of the two fiction books) for easy browsing and searching for answers to your electronic and radio problems. These books, listed here, are the latest on their subjects and their titles cover a broad spectrum of amateur radio subjects.

First Steps in RadioARRL,Doug DeMaw, W1FB
Ham Radio Made Easy, 1 st edARRLSteve Ford, WB8IMY
Novice Notes: The Book, 1 st edARRL
W1FB's Help for New HamsARRLDoug DeMaw, W1FB
Understanding Basic Electronics, 1 st edLarry Wolfgang, WR1B
Morse Code, The Essential Language, 2 nd edARRLL. Carron Jr., W3DKV
The 1996 ARRL Handbook for Radio AmateursARRL
The FCC Rule Book, 10 th edARRLNorm Bliss, WA1CCQ
Now You're Talking, 2 nd ed (Novice & Tech Lic Man)ARRLL. Wolfgang
The ARRL General Class License Manual, 2 nd edARRLDoug DeMaw, W1FB
The ARRL Advanced Class License Manual, 4 th ed.ARRLDoug DeMaw, W1FB
The ARRL Extra Class License Manual, 5 th edARRLJim Kearman, KR1S etc.
The ARRL Operating Manual, 5 th edARRLSteve Ford, WB8IMY
The ARRL Antenna Book, 17 th edARRL
The ARRL Antenna Compendium, Vol 4, 1 st ed.ARRLR. Dean Straw, N6BV
W1FB's Antenna NotebookARRLDoug DeMaw, W1FB
HF Antennas for all Locations, 2 nd ed.RSGBLes Moxon, G6XN
The Quad Antenna, 1 st edCQBob Haviland, W4MB
Transmission Line Transformers, 2 nd edARRLJerry Sevick, W2FMI
Building & Using Baluns & UnunsCQJerry Sevick, W2FMI
Solid State Design for the Radio Amateur, 1 st edARRLWes Hayward/Doug DeMaw
Radio Frequency Interference: How to Find It & Fix It, 1 st edARRLEd Hare, KA1CV & R. Schetgen KU7G
The NEW Shortwave Propagation Handbook, 1 st edCQGeo Jacobs, W3ASK, N4XX, K6GKU
The ARRL UHF/Microwave Experimenter's ManualARRL(Antennas, Components & Design)
200 Meters & Down, 1 st edARRLClinton B. DeSoto
The Satellite Experimenter's HandbookMartin Davidoff, K2UBC
Your Packet Companion, 1 st edARRLSteven Ford, WB8IMY
Your RTTY/AMTOR CompanionARRLSteven Ford, WB8IMY
SOS At Midnight, 3 rd ed (fiction)Walker A. Tompkins
Easy Target (fiction)ARRLCynthia Wall, KA7ITT

Field Day 1996 by Mark Ball KE6IFD

SARC was invited by KRVARC to join them for Field Day '96, 22-23 June, with the Kenwood USA radio club at Shirley Meadows Ski area. For those of you that weren't able to make it, let me tell you a little about what you missed.

First of all, the SARC tower trailer was a real show stopper. After great deliberation about where the tower should be placed, it was eventually erected smack in the middle of the ski slope. While a bunch of us did the grunt work to erect the tower, Bob Huckins W6UPI served as our set up engineer. He kept the unit straight with the world by using his level and giving us instructions to square things up. Because of the slope, we eventually removed the tires and dug the front rests down about eight inches.

Although it took the Kenwood group until late Friday night to get there, they brought along some of there newest radio gear, like the TS-870S, and an assortment of new antennas. With about five different antennas being constructed at one time, Saturday morning was one of the biggest antenna assembly parties I have ever witnessed. A 20-meter beam eventually was placed on the SARC tower trailer. Oh! What a sight to see!

Meanwhile, there was the team of John Skaggs KM6NN, John Agrelius KM6HG, joined by Jim Evans W6EFB that operated from an excellently set up station at the lower end of the slope. They operated on ten meters and eventually produced 300+ contacts. Of all the stations operating, this was the only one to use computer logging for the event. Jim Kusnir KE6DWM also operated from the same station on six meters and eventually produced nearly 200 contacts. Leo Seitlinger N6JJQ set up his van at the upper end of the slope and was the only station to operate on solar power.

Of course, besides lost kids and visits by Boy Scouts and others, there was a lot of really great food that was eaten during the weekend. Each morning, the cooking crew put out a pancake/French toast breakfast.

On Saturday evening, we were all treated to an excellent tri-tip dinner. The chef even made up huge tub of his Pico D'Gaio (world's best salsa) creation. The cooking was handled by Lars KF6AMF and Katrina Nelson, Robb KE6IFL and Cathy Maxwell, and me KE6IFD.

Many other SARC members and others from the IWV area attended the event. Thanks to all of you that made this event such a success. Maybe next year we can do it again. If you'd like to know more about what happened at Field Day '96, Robb Maxwell KE6IFL has a home video tape which he is willing to loan out. If you are an Internet junkie, you can check out the pictures and story on KM6HG's web pages. It can be found at or just do a search on KM6HG. [Now K7HG -- EvB]

Ninth Annual Picnic at the Park
by Elvy Hopkins ND6Q

The SARC communications crew mustered at 6:30 am at Leroy Jackson Park and departed shortly thereafter for eight check points along the 62 mile route to Kernville. All the bicycle riders had departed by 8:00 am. The last riders arrived at Kernville's River Park at 2:00 pm. Between these times, seven check points, two water stops and the start and finish areas were provided continuous communications. There were no emergencies, no lost riders, only one flat tire and the only first aid dispensed was two aspirin. The youngest rider was ten years old and the oldest was someone's great- grandfather. A good time was had by all. during a gorgeous desert fall day.

The SARC portable repeater was set up, tweaked and removed by Greg Roush and Jim Kusznir. The complete crew was: Jack Bitzer NL7SX, Hal Hazel KM6JM, Mike Herr WA6ARA, Paula Herr N6VGW, Elvy Hopkins ND6Q, Jim Kusznir KE6DWM, Dave Rait KG6LR, Greg Roush WA7IRW, Dave Stone KC6UUR, Keith Clark W6SIY. Elvy Hopkins ND6Q was coordinator.

The High Sierra Cyclists president, Bob Glen, and the ride organizer, Joe Delory, send thank-yous to SARC for another job well done.

Kiwanis Walk-A-Thon
A crew of SARC communications volunteers assisted the Local Kiwanis Club in conducting their annual walk-a-thon on Saturday, 28 September. Led by Greg Roush WA7IRW, Hal Hazel KM6JM, Jack Bitzer NL7SX, Dave Stone KC6UUR and Larry Merwin KE6YLG kept track of walkers, drinking cups sign-in sheets etc. for this event. Greg says that seven Hams were needed for things to go very smoothly but the five volunteers leap-frogged the walkers and kept ahead of most of them.

Walk-a-thons and parades are events that new Hams can learn how SARC does public service. These local events do not require committing to an all-day, out-of-town race/ride requiring much equipment and preparation. Consider this next time a parade or walk-a-thon communications organizer requests assistance at one of these local events. Sign up and help SARC show Ridgecrest that we Hams are here and we do communicate.

by Lloyd Brubaker WA6KZV

The west coast electric power blackout of last August 10th was one of the best drills we've had yet. It wasn't a disaster and it wasn't an emergency, but, at the time we didn't know which it might be. It involved seven western states in a patchwork fashion and it took a while before we knew how extensive the lights-out was. We did everything right except be sure that we were as ready as we thought we were.

Forty-two Hams checked in. Some were RACES members and some weren't. We gradually began to upgrade the organization as the size of the incident became apparent. Our technique of assigning hams to monitor commercial TV and radio and other amateur radio nets paid off again with information that was generally ahead of the media. Of course it was easy to stay ahead of TV this time, even CNN.

We used the club translator for about thirty minutes until it's battery went dead. The radio the NCS had was solar powered and it worked just fine for awhile then the NCS had to go to a handheld which, in simplex mode, was not readable to many net members. Remember that if this occurrence leaves you isolated form the NCS (Net Control Station), relaying becomes necessary. Another station in the net who can hear you and the NCS will take on the responsibility of relaying your traffic to and from the net. It takes net discipline to make the system work, but it's done all the time. The American Radio Relay League (ARRL) wasn't named that just because it sounded nice.

To make a long story short we needed to have an auxiliary power supply ready to power the translator in case of an emergency power failure. We're working on it. I learned something about my individual preparedness too. I now have spare fuel for the generator!

Randsburg Repeater
Correct frequencies for the new SARC Randsburg repeater are: Output 145.34 MHz, Input 144.74 MHz (minus 600 kHz) with 100.0 Hz sub-audible tone required for access. Sorry about the offset boo-boo in the last Airwaves. Ed. ND6Q

Ridgecrest Translator (146.64 MHz - 600 kHz)
After the failure of the translators batteries during the 10 August electric power blackout, a search for another backup power source was begun. Elvy Hopkins ND6Q took the existing battery of ten NiCd cells and thirty four other similar cells that were obtained at the time the translator battery was built and began the task. Two months of steep learning curve, adjusting of electrolyte strength, charge/discharge cycling and many sheets of data have not yielded ten good cells.

A recent discussion with Steve Luhn KA7ULQ, who lives in Walker Pass and uses solar/battery/wind power, gave two more processes to try in reviving enough cells to put the translator back onto NiCd backup power. If this effort fails, a deep cycle lead-acid battery and an Astron power supply configured to float charge a battery are being considered. Since total independence from commercial power is highly desirable, solar charging is also being investigated, however, the $400+ initial cost looks very large considering our current SARC bank balance.
de ND6Q

1996 - 1997 Schedule
Below is the SARC Cram Class and Volunteer Exam (VE) Session schedule for the remainder of 1996 and 1997.

Also see the enclosed exam achedule which includes surrounding cities.

License Study Guides
Do you know of a copy of Now You're Talking or a current license study manual lying about not getting used? Do you want to donate it to SARC for another go-around? Bring it to a meeting or give it to a club officer.

Minutes of the Board of Officers Meeting, 4 Sept. 1996 Attendees 1st VP David Stone KC6UUR, Treasurer Mark Rosenthal
N6BVP, Airwaves editor Elvy Hopkins ND6Q.
Discussion: KC6UUR's assumption of president duties.
How to lower of SARC $$$ expenditures.
Maintaining an accurate SARC membership list.
Battery/solar back-up power for SARC 146.64 MHz translator.

Minutes of the General Meeting 9 September 1996
by Secretary, Lloyd Brubaker

The meeting was called to order by vice president Dave Stone at 1930 hours. (President, Mark Ball, is in class at CCCC and will be for the remainder of the year.) The sign-in sheet included sign-ups for the coming events listed in the last issue of The Airwaves. The nominating committee was established: Mike Cash, Jerry Brooks and Lloyd Brubaker. Volunteers to run for office were called for.

Ron Ogren gave a talk on "EME" (Earth-Moon-Earth) communications and gave a list of ten factors that influence such contacts. He now has a WAS (Worked All States) using this "ultimate long path". He pointed out that there are around 500 "heavies" equipped for EME in there and many more "little guys" who are coming in.

Try pointing your pair of 15 ft., two meter Yagis at the rising moon and listening to the CW part of the band. No, you don't have to wait for a full moon for the signals to be loud enough because the moon is bigger!

The meeting was adjourned with a 50/50 drawing and a tape brought by Mike Cash showing the installation of the Randsburg repeater.

1 Jan. 9530 Sept. 96
Shares $2814.60$1474.52
Deficit for year$742.03
Since Mark Ball KE6IFD has moved on, the task of AIRWAVES editor has fallen to me. I'm using a Macintosh IIfx (68030 at 40 MHz), System 7.5.3, Word 5.1a, Claris Works 4.0, Excel 4.0, FileMaker Pro 2.0 etc. Yes, I can read DOS and Windows files. Fred Willis KC6YYS does the scanning and OCR. I solicit your news articles, items of Ham interest, for sale ads etc. I'm not on packet but your text on a floppy in a mutually interchangeable format is welcomed. Call me, Elvy Hopkins, ND6Q, at 619-384-3589.

via. Ray Stevens, KC6UTC
Drake MN-2700, 2 kW antenna tuner, no balun $225.
Alpha 76PA, 1 kW, RF power amplifier, good tubes, works well $750.
Dentron MLA- 2500 1 kW RF power amplifier, good tubes, works well $450.
Contact Bob Rounthwaite WD6GBX
Wofford Heights, CA 619-376-2461.

Apple ValleyRaymond Key619-240-4546ARRL$6.05Walk-In1st Sat Even no. monthsMojave Mesa School cafeteriaKN6HH146.940/6.34 PL91.5T,G,A,E8:30amSARC has map
BakersfieldMichael McCorkle805-397-9075ARRL$6.05Walk-In1st Fri, Odd no. monthsKern Cty Fire Dept Train CntrKM6CB145.15/4.55T,G,A,E6:30 pm5642 Victor St.(Hwy99 Olive Dr)
BarstowNo Volunteer Examination Sessions in Barstow See Apple Valley or Hesperia
BishopWalter Lockhart619-873-5588ARRL$6.05Walk-In1st Sat Feb May Aug NovPresbyterian ChurchK6BDI146.94/6.34T,G,A,E11:00 am585 N. Main St. (McDonalds)
FontanaWilliam Hatch909-822-0392ARRL$6.05Walk-InEvery 2nd SatFontana Police Dept buildingN6YTQ145.52 simplexT,G,A,E12:30 pm after swap meet17005 Upland Ave map
HesperiaJames Mac Rae619-244-1396GLAARG$3.00Walk-In1st Sat Odd no. monthslocal business buildingWB6RUV147.30/7.90N - E8:30am10844 łE˛ Ave SARC has map
Lake IsabellaThomas Corso619-379-2947ARRL$6.05Walk-In1st Fri, Even no. monthsKern River Valley LibraryKN6TS145.41/4.81 156.7 PL or 146.42 simplex7:00 pm7054 Lake Isabella Blvd
LancasterAdrienne Sherwood805-948-1865ARRL$6.05Pre-Reg1st/2nd wk Every monthNew. Call for locationWA6YEOGLAARG$3.00Pre-RegTimes given below
Lancaster 1996 Dates:
Mondays 7:00 pm 1 Apr, 3 Jun, 1 Jul, 9 Sept, 4 Nov
Saturdays 9:00 am 11 May, 3 Aug, 5 Oct, 7 Dec
Lancaster ARC home page: HTTP://WWW.AVARC.AV.ORG
Mammoth LakesWiliam Trethewey619-934-8572ARRL$6.05Pre-RegOn demandJune Lake Vol Fire Dept Sta June LakeAB6TG146.73/6.13 100.0 PLT,G,A,EClass: see reverse
RidgecrestLloyd Brubaker619-375-7245ARRL$6.05Walk-In22 Jun, 26 Oct *Kerr-McGee Center* SARCWA6KZV146.64/6.04 (translator)T,G,A,E9:00 am100 W. California Ave
Alternate contact: Elvy Hopkins ND6Q 619-384-3589
*Note: Location for 26 Oct is Red Cross Office, NAWS
RidgecrestLloyd Brubaker WA6KZV conducts License Cram Sessions before examinations. Dates for 1996: 7, 8 & 9 Jun and 18, 19 & 20 Oct. SARC Times: Fri 7 pm - 9 pm, Sat 8 am - 5 pm with lunch break, Sun 8 am - 12 noon Request handout for details.
TehachapiWilliam J. Bell805-822-1473ULGLAARG$3.00Walk-In15 June, 19 Oct (3 per yr)Veterans HallN6GLO147.06/7.66 PL 156.7N ­ E9:00 amBy Sheriff Sub Sta
Before you travel:
Always call ahead for last minute information when planning to attend out-of-town VE Sessions.
What to take:

  1. Correctly completed FCC Form 610
  2. Original and
  3. copy of current amateur license
  4. Original and
  5. copy of current CSCE
  6. picture ID - drivers license
    The previous items are mandatory. The copies will be kept by the VE's. Originals and picture ID are used to verify the copies
  7. $$ application fee
  8. non-programmable calculator

  9. Provided by Sierra Amateur Radio Club of the High Mojave Desert, POB 1442 Ridgecrest CA 93556-1442
    Information current as of 1 Apr 1996 Original held by ND6Q

    Monitor the 146.64(-) translator, call Lloyd on the 146.64 translator to let him know you are available, and be ready to leave when needed. An E-Pack should contain your radios/batteries/charger, a water jug, (with at least a 2.5 gal container in the trunk of your car), Paper and pens, a clip board, flashlights, a watch or small clock, clothing & a hat, extra glasses, sun glasses, any meds you take regularly, some basic first aid items and your medical history (in case you get injured), and some non-perishable snacks (like hard candy) Always have extra batteries handy, if you don't need them, someone else sure will! Keep water and a sleeping bag in the trunk of your car.

    World Wide Web Links of interest to HAMS
    Wed Sep 13 19:06:54 PDT 1995
    Erik van Bronkhorst KC6UUT