From the desk of KM6RHC, Daniel, Club President
Hello all, hope this finds all of you well. It has been a rough time these last 13 months as our hobby involves interaction that has not been allowed to occur. As we now have had a few months of ZOOM meetings and my thanks go to June and Linda for making that happen and helping us figure that out. We are starting to reopen the town with things starting to return to normal I’m hopeful of us getting back to our events. We are exploring options for Field Day 2021, locating FOX transmitters for a fox hunt and planning for some gatherings in the near future. I hope we can all get together soon and put all of 2020 behind us. We have found a lot of new Hams over the last couple testing sessions and upgrades are picking up too. Thanks go out to LeRoy for his efforts and all the VE’s for their help as well. My thanks to Curtis and Marsha for their work with the Valley Ham News each month. I have been very busy with my work but have started making some time in the evenings to get on HF. I have had some neat QSO’s with my Elmer Phil as we had 6 or 7 stations all receiving each other from 3 or 4 countries at the same time.
Message to all of our club Technicians and those who are new Generals, if you want to get on HF, let me know. I will make some time and have you over to operate. As always, if you have ideas for events or need help with anything, let me know. My best to all of you and here is to a much better year.
Thanks for this QSO and till next, 73’s Daniel Weber
At the last general club meeting Danial (KM6RHC) gave a talk about solar power. Next month at the General Zoom Meeting, on 18 May, Dave Gipson (KC9EI) will give a presentation on Baluns.
May 4 Meeting Program
At our May 4 7:30 pm Zoom meeting Michael Joseph KK6ZGB & Lynn Pesely will present "Sacramento Medical Reserve Corps" & Kevin Hooke KK6DCT will present "Web Resources for the Radio Amateur." Our members receive log on instructions via their registered email. Visitors may request meeting access via advance e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org Time: 7:30 pm 1st Tuesday of each month.
River City ARCS Booth at May 14-15 Rio Linda Farm & Tractor Days
The River City ARCS will host an Amateur Radio information and live N6NA radio demonstration booth at the Rio Linda Historical Farm & Tractor Days. The event will be held on Friday, May 14 and Saturday May 15 from 9 am - 4 pm at Dry Creek Ranch, 6852 Dry Creek Rd, Rio Linda, CA 95673. We encourage all members and visitors to drop by, get on the air, and share the fun of amateur radio with the general public. For more information please email email@example.com
River City ARCS Field Day at the Fair Oaks VFW and at Home
Don't miss ARRL Field Day on June 26-27, our club's premier annual operating event! This year's Field Day will be a "hybrid" operating event. All members and the general public regardless of license class or status can "Get on the Air" at our Field Day. Drop-ins are welcome. We have reserved the pavilion at VFW Township Post 6158 at 8990 Kruitof Way, Fair Oaks, CA 95628 for club operation. Members who prefer to operate from home may also contribute their Field Day contact points to our cumulative club score. See the details at www.n6na.org/fieldday
Daily "Health and Welfare" Net to end May 1
After more than a year, we plan to end the Health and Welfare net. The operators we contact have had their COVID shots and have other non-hams keeping an eye on their well-being.
Our thanks to Bob N6PGQ, Neil KL7HQR and Peter KD6QZH for their dedicated service as net controls and to all who participated in our Health and Welfare Nets.
We plan to hold our final H&W Net Saturday May 1
Our 2 meter on-the-air net is held every Wednesday evening at 8:00 pm on the 145.25 MHz N6NA FM repeater and AllStar node 53410 and EchoLink node N6NA-R. All are also welcome to check in to our 8:30 pm 10 meter net on 28.420 MHz USB and the slow scan television net at 9 pm on the 441.300 MHz N6NA FM repeater. See more information at www.n6na.org/nets
May 5 In Person Meeting
Hello members, I'm told that many of you have had an opportunity to have your 2 Jabs in the arm and feel safe to leave your houses again. This is great news, because the SFM ARC will be meeting once again IN-PERSON. However, we will be holding the meeting for the next month or two at N6MQL's residence, just as we did before the weather started getting cold.
I'm told that the Carmichael Presbyterian Church (our normal meeting location) is beginning to open up once again, but isn't quite there yet.
Please join us for the W6SFM in-person meeting at my home QTH (N6MQL address found on QRZ) and be sure to bring a fold up chair with you. Don't worry all you people without your Jabs, you are welcome to wear your mask and keep your 6 feet distance. There is plenty of room for everyone to stay 6 feet apart if you like. The meeting will be held outside with plenty of fresh air.
I hope that ALL of our local members will join us on Thursday the 6th of May for our next in-person meeting. Snacks and water will be provided by the club. Please let me know if you have any questions or need help getting here.
73, Michael N6MQL, President SFM ARC
The Samuel F. Morse ARC will offer a full ten week Morse Code Course beginning on May 12 - July 14. Visit the www.w6sfm.com website for details.
On-Air Net Meeting
Each Tuesday of the week 8:00 PM on 3.545 MHz the SFM ARC enjoys getting on the air with CW for our weekly Nets. You do NOT need to be a member of the SFM ARC to check into our nets and we encourage you to invite a friend to join us as well. Although our nets usually run around 15 wpm code, we are all happy to accommodate those that are slower and need us to oblige. If you are unable to copy Morse Code or need some code practice, please feel free to visit our on-line LIVE streaming broadcast of both the Audio and a CW to Text decoding of the meeting. The “LIVE FEED” link can be found on our home page of our website. With our YouTube Live streaming system, you can watch the Live Feed on your Apple IOS or Android devices. You do not need to have a YouTube account to access the feed. However, you will need one to subscribe to our channel. Those viewing through YouTube can chat with others watching on-line as well. This of course is not mandatory, but rather just a way of making everyone feel more involved in our on-air nets. If you like, you can “check-in” using the chat window and you will be included with our On-Air Net log. Simply announce your call letters in the chat window.
Tell A Friend
Do you know someone in need of a Ham Club to call home? Perhaps someone that wants to learn Morse Code, are interested in CW or already knows and uses it? The SFM ARC would love to be their new Club home. Our in-person meetings are held each 1st Thursday of the month at 7PM. Please use the rear parking lot and entry for best access to the meeting. A map and directions can also be found on our website. We hope to see you at our next meeting!
PREZ Says for May 2021
Blessings from the shack, Tinkers Lair, of KF6OBI! – What crazy weather we are experiencing. To look at the vegetation on my property one would think that it is already the month of June. Very dry and missing the vegetation one would normally see. Just a few areas of Rye Grass, so little that it is not worth hooking up the field mower to the tractor.
Climate change you bet, but not caused by us puny beings. We can look to, and blame, Space Weather for this environmental evolution. We are just specs of dust in this Galaxy. The Galaxy and its mass is in control of all weather related events. Everything is cyclical!
The last local weather event we experienced, if you can call it that, has now pushed out a couple of weeks our planned activities for the months ahead, due to a dusting of new snow in the Mendocino, Snow Mountain Range. These activities are: 1.) DRT maintenance and update of the communications suite. This can be accomplished anytime we can fit in. 2.) Finish the GMRS repeater build and relocate it to either the Saint Johns repeater site or another location pending local Glenn County approval. Work is in progress as this is being written. 3.) Saint Johns repeater site maintenance and update to include repositioning the Solar array, installation of new antennas, and installation of a Winlink packet gateway system. Plus hopefully install metal roof and siding which may require a contractor? Work also in progress. A contractor has been contacted. Now we need to get him to the site so he can give us a bid on the job. 4.) Field Day 2021. What would you like to do and or where would you like to hold this event? Waiting to hear from you all on what you would like to do? Do you want to lend a hand with the above work? Let us know so we can add you to the work party list. I am please to announce that we have a new member in our organization. Please welcome Jeremie Finch, KN6NGE, who resides in Orland. A very big welcome from the group, Jeremie! Zoom membership meeting again this month. Put on your calendar the 14th of May, the second Friday of the month and join us online. Phil, KI6SMN, will host and run the meeting this month as I will be out of California and in another state. I will try my best to at- tend the Zoom meeting but can not guarantee that I will be able to.
We look forward to all members joining us. Watch your email in boxes for the details needed to enter the GARS Zoom membership meeting. What would you like to see added to the club’s web site pages? Let us know. In desperate need of ideas here! Up and coming events are: Most plans are still on hold due to limitations placed on us because of COVID-19. However Glenn County is opening up, things are in flux at all times, so we may be able to return to face to face membership meetings in June of this year. We can only hope... GARS 10th Anniversary doings – on hold – this event is now on hold until such time as we can meet F2F. We are again forced to put off this event until such time as we are over most of the COVID-19 restrictions. Stay tuned in for up coming announcements.
ANNOUNCEMENT: During our last Zoom membership meeting it was agreed that we should hold the GARS 10th Anniversary festivities at the same time as our GARS Membership Christmas get together. Of course this will all depend on any new COVID restrictions that could be placed on us. Please note we will not be having our normal F2F membership meeting for the month of May. See information above if you want to join in on Zoom for this months membership meeting.<.p>
Mike Ellithorpe, KF6OBI President, GARS firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Elk Grove-Florin ARC Update
Greetings Members and Friends of the Elk Grove Florin Amateur Radio Club...
It is hoped that you are doing well, have been vaccinated against Covid 19, and are ready to begin planning for our first in-person meeting. It appears that approval for organizations to hold in-person meetings will come from the State in the middle of June, so we are beginning to plan for our first such meeting to be Saturday, July 10, 2021.
During the pandemic, we have managed to continue with our 7:00 p.m. Wednesday evening nets using the N6NA repeater courtesy of River City ARCS, 145.25 Mhz with a PL of 162.2 And, we have added a simplex check in on 147.555 MHz that follows, as was done in the early days of our club.
We have also held meetings, albeit using Zoom, on the second Saturday evening of each month, at 7:00 p.m. Once we are able to resume in-person meetings, we plan to also have a Zoom capability.
In order to have an idea of what YOU want of our radio club, you are invited to join us this Saturday evening for the Zoom meeting, and help us plan.
We are looking for a place to meet in July, since some places will continue to be restricted until later in the year, so if you know of a place, let us know during the meeting.
Here is to moving forward with the Elk Grove Florin Amateur Radio Club.
Dave Reingold KK6MVJ, President
Member Updates and Feedback
Please send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org to be included in this section.
GOTA Café Session “Chocolate Fish Coffee Roaster On-The-Air with KN6OHL”
by Jojo Melendres, KN6HTD, submitted April 19, 2021
The GOTA Café Session is an eyeball QSO. It is an informal, outdoor, by invitation activity set up with hams who are eager to learn more about Amateur Radio. An Elmer, in which case for today, Jojo KN6HTD shares some additional information to newer hams (In Jen’s case, not necessarily new to radio).
Meet our new member spotlight: Jennifer KN6OHL!
Jen is a fun, outgoing, outdoor-loving, adventurer, and CB-er (Citizens’ Band radio operator). She expressed desire to learn more and welcomes this one-on-one Elmer session.
We followed covid precautions, it is obvious that we are masked, and both vaccinated 😊 We have an outline of the things to learn – all done in 60 minutes.
Jennifer had an overview of the many available nets that she can study and jump into. She learned some useful mobile phone ham-related apps. She listened to a regular, ongoing Coffee Break net with SFARC using W6EK repeater (for which Jojo is a member of), learned about the Sac Valley Noontime and Sac ARES nets. Jen also saw, touched and got a feel of the 2-meter Kenwood TM-281 VHF mobile radio, an Alinco switching power supply, and a Bioenno battery. Jojo checked in to the Morning Coffee Break net with a quick in and out and that was part of the demonstration. Jen brought her HT with a better whip antenna than the stock rubber ducky. We touched on a lot more topics than I can write here.
All of these are on top of enjoying a cup of hot coffee and tea to enjoy the conversation!
This is an educational opportunity brought to you by one of the Training Committee team members of River City ARCS. Jojo is a registered ARRL Instructor and a Volunteer Examiner. It is provided for free based on the Elmer’s availability. 73, Jojo KN6HTD
Why Not Try Contesting?
by Al Canton, K6AAI, posted May 1, 2021
I enjoy contesting, but I find a lot of hams simply don't participate. Here are some of the reasons I hear.
- I don't know when the contests are held: I use Contest Calendar at https://www.contestcalendar.com/ but there are other listings out there. Contest Calendar will tell you the start and finish times, the exchange to use, and where to find the rules as well as where to upload your logged file.
- I've never done it and am afraid I'll screw it up: There are lots of "how to contest" sites out there but you don't need one. All you have to do is have a logging program and learn what the exchange is. Often it is a serial number the logging program will give you but you can do it all on lined paper if you want.
- I don't have a contest logger: A lot of logging programs have a 'contest mode' but if you are using QRZ or LOTW you may want to get a stand-alone contest logger. There are a bunch of these loggers out there. I use the Skookum Logger for the Mac. Most of the contest loggers are free and easy to use and have the ability to convert the log to the (standard) Cabrillo file format with one click.
- I want a QSO, not just a quick exchange: There are lots of hams who are happy to chat a bit with you during the contest if you ask them something... "Great signal into Sacramento, what are you running?" Of course a lot of hams are dead-serious contest players and all they want are contacts. Still, even most of these guys will be polite.
- I don't understand why I should contest: For me and others it is fun to see just how far I can get out, as well as to help collect QSOs for a WAS award of something similar. On large contests hams come out of the woodwork all across the world.
- I won't get through the pile-up: There are pile-ups for stations in popular and hard-to-get states, like Vermont or Maine or West Virginia. However, patience is a virtue because bands change, sometimes quickly and it is quite possible that your 100W station in CA will get through when the legal-limit guy in Texas doesn't, even though he is 20-over to you.
- I'm not going to win: This is true, you're not. But that is not the reason most hams play the game. They play the game... to play the game... it is fun and it is interesting as you can and will reach places you never did before... I've reached islands in the Caribbean I'd never even heard of before.
-I can't keep up: There is no reason to keep up. I'm slow. I hear a station and I go to QRZ to see where he or she is from and read their page and then I will answer their call. It is slow, but I find it interesting to learn about what other hams are into, how they came to ham radio, etc. from their QRZ.com page.
- Everyone runs power and I don't have power: Believe it or not, everyone does NOT run power. There are plenty of barefoot stations heard during contests. And some stations will give a priority in a pile-up to stations include "QRP" with their call.
It is up to you but if you have not done any contesting (or perhaps even a QSO party) why not give it a try? It is another fun and interesting way to enjoy the ham radio hobby.
Al Canton, K6AAI
Section Member Duane Wyatt, WAØMJD, on Childrens Hospital's "Kaleidoscope Variety Show"
Posted February 3, 2019
The University of California Benioff Childrens Hospital's Kaleidoscope Variety Show recently featured Sacramento Valley Section member Duane Wyatt, WAØMJD, showing his ham radio operation.
In this "Video Postcard" Duane explains and demonstrates his ham radio station in this program for children.
Section Member Phil Sittner, KD6RM, on QSO Today Podcast
Phil Sittner, KD6RM, has a ham radio story that goes back over 50 years, from childhood. Still living in Northern California, Phil builds his own radios and test equipment, operates CW on 80 and 40 meters, using his fence mounted 80 meter end-fed Zepp and a pair of phased 40 meter verticals in an HOA neighborhood where antennas are forbidden. We harness Phil’s extensive technical expertise and hear his ham radio story in this QSO Today.
Listen to Phil's podcast interview on https://www.qsotoday.com/podcasts/kd6rm
Pot grow lights interfere with Ham Radio
Submitted by Rene Smythe, WB6PSY, posted March 4, 2017
I have experienced this interference for the past few years. I found the interference by swinging my 10m Yagi monobander around until the noise became over S9. I then went outside to see where the beam was physically pointed and discovered a garage where indoor pot is being grown. The lights are on a time cycle so the interference comes and goes. 40º degrees in either direction takes the noise out.
Now that marijuana is being legalized in more states, more hams are going to experience this noise.
Free Amateur Radio Club Website Template
Posted January 20, 2019
Section Member Al Canton K6AAI is offering a generic amateur radio club WordPress website template for free. See the sample website posted at https://k6anc.com/wpradio/. If interested, please contact Al at ac@K6AAI.net
E-mail compliments, suggestions and submissions for inclusion in our Section News to kp4md (at) arrl.org