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        Susanville, CA. 96127


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      LARC President’s Letter for April 2021


Greetings everyone!  Yup, that is day-light at the far end of the tunnel.


We’ve decided to hold our next club meeting on May 15th, 2021. Normal meeting place from 11:00 AM until 12:45 PM but we need to limit the meeting to a little less than the normal 2 hours so the restaurant staff can clean the room before the next group meets.


 Club Dues are still being requested. Information and a club application if needed is available to print out from the >< Website.


April 2021 President’s News Letter;


LARC President’s Letter for April 2021


Greetings everyone!  Yup, that is day-light at the far end of the tunnel.


We’ve decided to hold our next club meeting on May 15th, 2021.  Normal meeting place, but we need to limit the meeting to a little less than the normal 2 hours so the restaurant staff can clean the room before the next group.  Good idea, we’re not to the end of the tunnel quite yet.


Well, let me tell you a couple of new developments that came about because of COVID, but were in the future even without the lock-down.


1.     Virtual meetings:  Twenty-five years ago when I was working I had remote people who reported to me in Silicon Valley.  They did software support on the telephone so they didn’t have to move to California or commute 3 hours a day to a home they could afford miles away.  Well, the lock-down hastened this trend greatly, and there’s no going back.

One of the results in the world of Amateur Radio is the Virtual Hamfest.  Yup, the famous Dayton Hamfest is now available on your laptop.  The first one was broadcast in 2020 and the second just completed in 2021.  Both had technical growing problems, but were largely successful and allowed many to “attend” who would not travel to Ohio to enjoy all the displays and presentations.  And if you weren’t available at the time it was initially presented you could watch it at any time for the next month.  GREAT DEAL.

The Quarter Century club used to meet every other month in Reno.  Now we meet via Zoom and the comfort of my recliner.  The ability to communicate like this reduces the pollution from commuting, the wear and tear on our cars and our roads, but more importantly it gives us back several hours a day of our lives.


2.     Of all the well done and informative presentations at the Virtual Expo, two changed my plans for stay at home.  The first was a demo and explanation of 3D printing.  So I bought a 3D printer and the little fibers of plastic that melt into something usable.  I initially thought of making replacement knobs for the old radios that I restore occasionally.  Turns out that printing them once they have been digitized is the easy part.  Scanning a real one to get the digital map of it is much harder.  So practice will be with free downloads of chess piece files.  The other interesting presentation was of working meteor scatter.  Now I had done a little of that, but this filled in questions.

See section 3 below:


3.     Within the software program WSJT-X (used mainly for FT-8 by a majority of hams) is an optional mode called MSK144.  Another invention of the genius Joe Taylor of Princeton University.  Most use is on 6 meters, but it is used by some on 2 meters.  Turns out that when dust and rocks flying through space collide with the Earth’s atmosphere they burn up from the friction with air and leave a trail of ionized particles.  A “rock” the size of a grain of sand will leave a trail as big as a battleship.  That is what your 6 meter MSK144 signal bounces off of, not the piece of sand (rock) itself.  Fun to try, but many hours of listening for each contact.  You transmit for 15 seconds, and then listen for 15 seconds.  During your 15 seconds of transmitting your call and grid square are sent multiple times.  So you often see the same information printed multiple times on a good reflection from the trail of the rock.  Give it a try on 50.260 MHz.


4.     Another turning point during our hibernation was the continued prediction that we are at the start of the next Sunspot cycle.  I hope this is finally it, because the last entry in my log book was a month ago.  As more spots affect our atmosphere we will see stronger signals on 20 meters, longer band openings each day, and the opening of the higher bands like 15, 12, and 10 meters.  With the coming of the summer months we should see some openings on 6 meters for CW, SSB, and FT-8 contacts across the USA and hopefully to other continents.  It’s happened in years past, just not to me. Joke.


5.     So, if you have been vaccinated or are sure you are healthy, or want to wear a mask, please join us on May 15th at 1100 hours to share your adventures of last year and maybe take home one of several door prizes donated by yours truly.


6.     Finally, it has been decided no club Field Day gathering this year. Too many of the main players will be out of town or attending weddings on that weekend.  If any of you would like to use the club call sign K6LRC, let me know and we will coordinate any planned operations.       


See you at the meeting May 15th at 11 o’clock.    

Stan LaPointe - K7NUU


The Lassen ARES/VIP group still holds a weekly Thursday evening net for ARES and CDF/VIP members. Lassen Radio Club members and guest members are encouraged to join. The Net starts at 06:30 PM on 3.987 MHz HF and shortly thereafter the member roster will again be called on the 146.880 VHF repeater on Shaffer Mountain. A DMR Net on local 1 may be called afterwards?


         Exams within 100 Miles > <



                                 President: Stan La Pointe, K7NUU, 253-3774 >[email protected]<

                                 Vice President:  Joe Watkins, KJ6QDU, 000-0000 >[email protected]<                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                 Secretary/Treasurer Terry Cobb Sr., K6ME, 253-1099 >[email protected]< 




      The LARC radio club owns and maintains 6 Repeaters and 6 Digital Packet-APRS Nodes

             Please support your local Radio Club so we can keep this fine equipment in service.


       Lassen Radio Club meetings are normally held on the third Saturday monthly. Unless notified otherwise.