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Surrey (Canada) Amateur Radio Club Monthly Newsletter
Page The SARC Communicator June 2016 June 2016 The Surrey Amateur Radio Club Communicator SARC Annual General Meeting See Page 31 The Newsletter of the Surrey Amateur Radio Club Page 2 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Last Meeting 2 Club Station News 4 Distracted Driving Update 8 Radio-Active 10 QRM 12 News You Can Lose 13 Tech Topics 14 Adam’s Tech Topics 19 Back To Basics 28 SARC AGM Program 31 IN THIS ISSUE click on the page number below At The May 11, 2016 Meeting… At The Last Meeting... Welcome The meeting, chaired by Stan Williams, was called to order at 7:05pm with 24 members in attendance. Announcements Stan Williams VA7NF reported that Bill Parkes of Surrey is a recent silent key and had a portion of his estate donated to the club. Much of his collection is vintage and consists mainly of HF equipment. It has been moved into storage at the clubhouse. The executive will likely have a sale to the club membership or retain some equipment for the clubhouse use. Equipment includes several HF transceivers. Stan Williams VA7NF reported that he and many other people including SEPARS members met last Monday as part of the Emergency Services Preparedness Week: http://www.surrey.ca/city- services/11125.aspx Al Munnik VA7MP reported that recently there was a meeting held in Victoria to discuss the new BC laws aimed at reducing distracted drivers. This meeting was in particular related to Amateur Radio operation of hand held devices while driving. Even though some of the law could be interpreted differently for amateur radio it’s not identified clearly as an exception. It is not recommended than any amateur use their handheld mic while driving until this is cleared up. Discussions are ongoing and it seems all the right people are involved already. It’s suggested that an email be sent to all members of the club as a warning. Al reported that those with Nexus membership could lose their privileges with a single infraction. Al Munnik VA7MP attended the 2 day emergency conference in Seattle, called Cascadia Rising 2016, hosted by the Seattle Community College. There were 8-9 other BC members in attendance. Al recommends that members get familiar with RMS Express and digital Internet. All of the seminars for both days may be available on the Internet (and Al has since confirmed URL as www.commacademy.org -Ed.) https://wsg.washington.edu/event/casca dia-rising-2016/ http://commacademy.org/ https://www.fema.gov/cascadia-rising- 2016 http://www.wastateares.org/cascadia- rising John Schouten VE7TI reminded members of the SEA-PAC Ham fest in Seaside Oregon June 3, 4, 5th - it’s the largest ham fest in our general area and worth attending, especially for those who have not been there before. Al Munnik VA7MP reported that the Langley Amateur Radio Association has decided not to have a raffle during the “Cruise In” this year. There will still be 2 information booths and possibly a tent for shade to allow for a place of refuge from the sun. LARA will have donated water to hand out. A financial update was provided by Scott Hawrelak VE7HA. Dues can be paid at this meeting, or via PayPal or at the AGM in June. Committee Reports AGM Stan Williams VA7NF: Next month is the AGM and there will be a notice of motion in the Communicator for proposed bylaw changes. 5 Director positions are open this year (1 for 1 year and 4 for 2 years). A notice will be sent out if the PREOC meeting room is unavailable on June 8th. Foxhunt An update was provided by Anton James VE7SSD. 15 people are signed up so far and more are always welcome. The foxhunt is on Saturday May 21st at Crescent Park in South Surrey. Participants meet at 8:30am but the fox hunt will run from 10am - 12:30pm with the BBQ to follow. An invitation has been sent to SURREY AMATEUR RADIO CLUB TELEPHONE & ADDRESS (778) 806-4662 12144 - 57A Avenue Surrey, BC V3X 2S3 SARC@ve7sar.net EDITOR John Schouten VE7TI SARCcommunicator @outlook.com WEBMASTER Howard Ticzon VA7HTZ NET MANAGER Garvin Yee VA7YEE QSL MANAGER Heinz Buhrig VA7AQ REPEATER MANAGER Mike Plant VE7AT MEMBERSHIP John Brodie VA7XB Page 3 The SARC Communicator June 2016 The SARC Communicator is published monthly except July and August for members of the Surrey Amateur Radio Club. To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your address for e-mail delivery of this newsletter, notify SARCcommunicator @ outlook.com Non-members living in the Greater Vancouver area may receive one trial issue. Beyond our membership area, annual Communicator subscriptions are available for a $5 donation towards our Field Day fund. SARC maintains a website at www.ve7sar.net that includes club history, meetings, news, photos and other information. On The Cover… On May 23rd our yellow tower was placed next to the clubhouse and VE7SAR was “On The Air!” Art Witmans VE7WAE is shown making a 20m test from his HF mobile. The clubhouse is progressing well in time for our Field Day effort, which will be a dry event this year no matter what the weather. There are 4 pages of clubhouse news, starting on page 4. Kalmar Koffee Klatch Reminder The SARC Weekly Koffee Klatch is on Saturday at the Kalmar Restaurant at 80th and King George Hwy in Surrey at 9:00 am. Bring your significant other, bring your family, see old friends and have fun. those attending the recent Ham class as well. Website Howard Ticzon VA7HTZ was absent. No issues reported with the website by members in attendance. Repeater Mike Plant VE7AT was absent. No repeater issues have been reported. Club Net Garvin Yee VA7YEE is always looking for additional persons to participate as a net control. Membership No changes to the membership at this time but Ham class students will automatically become SARC members after passing the exam. Membership stands at approximately 98. QSL Bureau No update The Communicator Jinty Reid VA7JMR would like someone to help transition into writing the monthly Radio-Active article. Geoff Higginson VA7HIG volunteered to take over this duty starting in September. Ham Classes Update John Schouten VE7TI reports that 7 weeks of instruction are complete and next week is the final exam. Clubhouse Update Jeremy Morse VE7TMY reports we had a donation of an LCD monitor by George Merchant VE7QH - Thanks George! A small work party (6-8 persons) is planned to get moved into the clubhouse prior to Field Day to organize the furniture and get radio room. Sunday 1 pm was selected for a work party, preceded by a Friday 1pm scouting trip by John Brodie VA7XB and Stan Williams VA7NF. A motion was made by Stan Williams VA7NF and seconded by Jinty Reid VA7JMR to purchase 2 large metal storage racks up to $300 for the club house. The motion carried. Jeremy Morse VE7TMY will purchase the racks. Field Day There is no field day committee this year, and it will be more of a social event for those attending. We should get antenna and radio room setup prior to field day since it’s a club station instead of a field station setup. The consensus of members was to have a potluck setup for food. Members and guests are welcome but we are not inviting the public or media since there will not be much to show off this year. Anyone wanting to visit will of course be welcome. John Brodie VA7XB will coordinate the setup of one of the club’s antenna towers at the clubhouse and establish concrete barriers that were offered by the City of Surrey previously. Sheldon Ward VA7XNL offered to help with setup of the antenna and will contact John. Meeting adjourned at 9:10pm ~ Minutes prepared by Jeremy Morse VE7TMY Page 4 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Sunday May 15, 2016 The participants: Anton James, Jeremy Morse, John Brodie, Sheldon Ward, Stan Williams, Nell & Ralph Wrotniak, Jan Vozenilek, SEPAR group testing the site: Alan Saunders, Drew Elvins Eight of us set out Sunday afternoon to cleanup, organize and prepare the clubhouse for general use. As we arrived some SEPAR members were performing a test of the clubhouse using go kits for VHF/HF rigs. The parking lot had a fiberglass pole with a dipole wire antenna and nearby some VHF antennas were setup. We got started quickly and began by assembling the 2 large metal storage racks recently purchased. There are still several extra desks in the clubhouse but we shuffled many of them around to make the best use of the space. The radio room now has 3 stations with room for 2 more as needed. 2 large possibly 24u height rack mount shelving units that were donated to the clubhouse were also moved into the radio room. All of the donated equipment to the clubhouse project was assembled for the first time. This included PCs donated by Keenan Tims, LCD from George Merchant and HF Transceiver from Norm Schmidt. Some recent drywall exploration had caused quite a mess in some of the rooms but this was vacuumed up by the team of volunteers. We also dispatched several ant colonies that were starting to setup shop in “our” clubhouse. Printed door labels were placed around the clubhouse to help identify our use of the space. Once all the furniture movement was completed we started some discussions on planning the radio room setup. Discussions included antenna setup, grounding and coax routing. Plans may also include setting up the multiplexers to allow each station full access to the antennas available. The crew then began to prepare to exit the building so we moved outdoors to view the location of the antenna tower. It was a very productive day and the clubhouse is in much better shape for our use. Plans are well in progress as far as the tower antenna and may be setup soon. ~Jeremy VE7TMY Club Station News Jeremy Morse VE7TMY A Work Party The radio room now has 3 stations with room for 2 more as needed. Page 5 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Organizing furniture in the radio room begins Common area w/Board room table and additional workspace The work crew and Alan Saunders from SEPAR testing the site We have several extra desks stored in 1 room. Setup of the shelving racks Page 6 The SARC Communicator June 2016 The club TH-7 tri-band HF antenna, used mostly at Field Day, was assembled and mounted on the tower. It was raised to the vertical position. Barricades have been placed to prevent theft. John and Sheldon power- washed ‘Big Yellow’ and touched-up paint. John towed the trailer to the clubhouse site where it will be parked surrounded by cement barricades for security. Art Witmans VE7WAE had his mobile HF ready to test the antenna. He contacted Kees Kaper VE5KKZ in Eston, Saskatchewan on 20 metres. The first transmission from the new clubhouse. During the May long weekend members were busy preparing the yellow antenna trailer for placement at the clubhouse... Page 7 The SARC Communicator June 2016 After waiting on Tuesday morning from 7:10 to 11:10, I wasn't in a rush to get there on Wednesday and I received an e-mail saying the City crew would be there "likely around 9:00". I received a call from Troy with the city that they would arrive around 10:15, so it was not too long of a wait. It looks like I should have been talking to Troy to begin with because they were there almost 10 minutes before his estimate! Anyhow, the pictures show Rob in the orange, training Kyle on the operation of the crane. It is a brand new truck that was actually in a city event last week. The crew was done by 11:05. It is interesting that the crane is only lifting the 2,500 lb (IIRC) concrete barriers by friction of the rubber contact area on the gripper. They are 10' barriers, but still low enough that the tower could be shifted back and forth to straighten it out without hitting the barriers as the tubes are 6+ inches higher. The orange safety cone on the end was left by the city to protect people from the steel hook on the end. As you can see there is enough room on the left to allow the next car to still open his door without damage or for a single motorcycle to park. ~Sheldon VA7XNL Sheldon VA7XNL took some photos for The Communicator of the barricades being placed around the tower as a security measure Page 8 The SARC Communicator June 2016 I am not a lawyer – this is based on information we have compiled, conversations with the Solicitor General, the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles and some of the Province’s Senior Policy advisors. The background: An Amateur Radio operator was ticketed under British Columbia’s Distracted Driving law. He went to traffic court and was found guilty by the Magistrate. The Magistrate ruled that the hand microphone he was using, with multiple buttons on it, was an electronic device, and he had it in his hand. Two members of the Delta Amateur Radio Society and the RAC Director for BC & YT, met with the Provincial government to discuss Amateur Radio and Distracted Driving on April 25, 2016. Attending were the Solicitor General (Minister Mike Morris), the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles (Sam MacLeod) and the Minister of State for Emergency Preparedness (Naomi Yamamoto), several Policy Advisors and the Delta South MLA Vicki Huntington (Ind). We identified that we were concerned that the apparent exemption for Amateur Radio Operators had been removed from the MOJ guide. In addition, at least one Amateur had been charged and convicted of Distracted Driving for using their hand microphones while in their vehicle. We also highlighted the inconsistencies in the wording of the regulations, and that the MOJ handout was downright wrong in some of the information it was providing. We offered to work with the Province to correct the errors, and to help reword the legislation to make it clear what was legal, and what wasn’t, when it came to using Amateur Radio in a moving vehicle. We subsequently held a working session on May 27, 2016, which was a very productive meeting with a Senior Policy Advisor and his associate, two members of the Delta club, and myself. We discussed our concerns, we explained more about how Amateur Radio was used, and we reviewed our suggested rewording of the language that governs Distracted Driving. There will be more working sessions. The Province explained their position, that Distracted Driving was a rapidly growing problem, and was resulting in a steadily increase in deaths, injuries and accidents. We have all heard that the government have substantially increased the penalties, both with fines and points totaling $543 and 4 points for a first offense, as of June 1st, 2016. The Province will be conferring with stakeholder groups (of which Amateur Radio is one), including the trucking industry, taxi cab industry, Police etc. They are also looking into what other Jurisdictions are doing, so they can better understand the range of options that they have. This is going to take some time, and if Legislative or Regulatory changes are required – even more time. So what is legal today? Remember – I’m not a lawyer. As I understand it, if you have a transceiver, firmly attached to your body, or your Government representatives agreed to review suggested changes to the law in consultation with the amateur radio community. Distracted Driving Bill Gipps VE7XS Distracted Driving and Amateur Radio Page 9 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Stolen Radio Equipment Alert I was just starting to get into Ham radio and building the courage to start checking into nets and groups. Got my License in February but then had a heart attack from a hockey injury at 34 and was in Toronto away from my family and radio. Tuesday night someone broke into my truck and stole the head to my IC-2730 so I am reaching out to ask everyone to keep an eye out for it. I really don’t have the money to replace it and was pushing my limits purchasing it in the first place. Thank you for all the help and thank you for all you do. Regards, Jeff Courtney VA7NIA C: 604-340-3726 E: email@example.com vehicle, and it has a hand microphone, with only one button - a push to talk switch, you are legal using it when you are driving. There are some caveats, it can’t obstruct your view forward or sideways, and the hand mike must be within easy reach of the driver. So the first problem, who has a hand mike that has more than just a push to talk button on it? Probably all of us. First thing to do – don’t use any of those other buttons while driving. My smartphone has a lot of things on it that I can’t use while driving, so I don’t. Apparently it is not a problem for you to reach over to the radio, and physically turn the volume up or down, or to change frequencies or channels. You do the same thing using the buttons on your hand mike, and it would be considered Distracted Driving! There are also some things that are not supported under the current rules. For example, push to talk on the driving wheel, on the floorboard or a headset with VOX are not, technically, supported. Oh yes, hands free using Bluetooth to the transceiver isn’t covered as well. My daily drive radio has a separate speaker – it doesn’t use the hand mike as a speaker – not legal. Now I think you are starting to see the problem. So is the Province. They are prepared to work with us to address the issues, but I doubt we will ever get an ‘exemption’ and it is going to take time. What do you do if you get a ticket? Be polite, point out that it is a handheld microphone tethered to the radio, firmly attached to your vehicle and you were only using the push to talk button as permitted under the regulations. Carrying a copy of B.C Reg. 308/209 (available on www.bclaws.ca) along with your ham certificate could help justify your radio operation. Contest the ticket, then contact me and we will work with you to mount a defense, hire a lawyer (we’ll be passing the hat for that) and we’ll fight it. In the meantime, we will continue to work with the Senior Policy Advisors and make sure they understand the issues, the options and what the wording of their regulations / legislation means to Amateur Radio Operators, our use of the equipment and our ability to be prepared should our volunteer services be required. Bill Gipps VE7XS Director, Radio Amateurs of Canada, BC & YT Section Manager, Amateur Radio Emergency Services, BC & YT See also URL: http://vickihuntington.ca/content/huntin gton-and-radio-operators-meet-ministers- discuss-distracted-driving-law Page 10 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Radio-Active Jinty Reid VA7JMR Bhim Sen Nair was born in Kenya, East Africa in 1929. To improve his educational opportunities the family moved to the village of Jandiala in the district of Jalandhar in the Punjab. He was one of 2 boys, sadly his brother has since passed away. Bhim’s best subjects at school were mathematics, science and English. He loved playing field hockey as a youth and even as an adult he continued this sport. He graduated from high school in the Punjab. When he was twenty years of age he married his wife Pushpa and moved back to Kenya. There he was employed by a British run company, the East African Railway. Through them he received engineer training and became the Clerk of Works (an assistant to the Civil Engineer who was his supervisor). He was later promoted to Inspector of Works and then Trade Testing Officer overseeing the training and exams of tradesmen. He also trained as a carpenter. During the war he worked for the Royal Air Force in Kenya for 2 or 3 years supervising and building runways. On one occasion, he remembers Queen Elizabeth II visiting the RAF Base in the early 1950s. Bhim and Pushpa had 5 children, 3 boys and 2 girls. In Kenya while living at the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro he fondly remembers the wonderful experience of living with so many wild life animals close by; cheetahs, lions and elephants being just a few. Once, along with his family, he got too close to a lion who was relaxing perched up in a tree. Bhim was oblivious to the danger and had to be reminded of this by the park wardens who told him just how easy it was for the lion to jump on top of them from the tree. Another time while driving in a vehicle with his son with the windows open Bhim felt inspired to close his son’s window and just in time… as a 20 foot Cobra snake crossing the road raised itself up and crashed into the window… thankfully, the window saved his son from receiving a fatal bite. There were many other incidents where Bhim and his family were saved from danger and Bhim, who has strong Hindu beliefs, attributes this protection to God. While visiting his brother, who lived in Canada, Bhim liked B.C. so much that he decided to immigrate with his family to Surrey, B.C. in 1973. However, in Canada his Kenyan credentials were not accepted and he was unable to find work in his field. Eventually, he trained as a realtor and remained in this profession until his retirement. He was an exceptional realtor, believing in being honest and putting his clients first. Consequently, he received over 200 achievement awards, including the very prestigious John Armenau Award given out annually for highly respected realtors. He now has 2 sons who are realtors. All Bhim and Pushpa’s children live close by in BC. About 5 or 6 years ago, while visiting White Rock, Bhim met Gary Skett VE7AS who interested him in ham radio. John Brodie also encouraged him to become involved in amateur radio and SARC. As a result, Bhim took his Basic Amateur Radio license from Gary and joined SARC. His first radio was a Yaesu but he is now the proud owner of a Kenwood TS- 990. Bhim and his grandson designed and built a beautiful new home out in rural Langley. Both John Brodie VA7XB and John Schouten VE7TI put up an antenna on the Bhim Sen Nair VA7BIM Page 11 The SARC Communicator June 2016 property, strung out between two trees. Now, he has a 60 ft. tower antenna. Bhim’s favourite part of being a ham is communicating with other people on HF radio. Since having a heart attack 2 years ago followed by a stroke he is left with some memory and vision loss, so being active on the radio is challenging for him. He is also unable to drive and do many things he formerly did. Among his other interests is being a collector of old cameras, vintage radios, books and other memorabilia that he has collected from around the world. He has devoted some rooms in his new home as a museum. He fixes up the radios which are all in running order. It is also there that he has his radio shack. Bhim is very community spirited and has helped to initiate several community projects such as; initiating the building of a crematorium in Delta along with Dharan Singh Bansal, as well as a Hindu temple at 8321 140th Street in Surrey. He has visited the UK, travelled all around East Africa, most of India, Scandinavia, Puerto Rico, Acapulco, Switzerland and parts of Canada. Looking forward to the future, Bhim’ s greatest desire is to get his health back so he can become more active as there are still things he wants to do. He has a kind, gentle and caring manner in interacting with others and has 2 main philosophies of life; to not procrastinate doing things, and valuing your family by maintaining good relationships with your wife and family members. Bhim is small in stature but big in humanity and heart. The writer found it a privilege to meet with him to do this article. I am sure I speak for SARC in wishing you a full recovery and restored health in the months ahead Bhim. ~ Jinty Reid VA7JMR This is Jinty’s last Radio-Active. She will be handing it over to Geoff Higginson who has agreed to write these articles starting in September. I’m sure you will join with me in thanking Jinty for her many interesting member profiles. -Ed. For Sale 1. New heavy duty 5 band Spiderbeam, pre-assembled version, with extra hardware included for permanent installation, $500.00. 2. New, in box, Yaesu G450A rotator, $400.00. Contact VE7AWV firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 604-512-1167 Page 12 The SARC Communicator June 2016 QRM ...from the Editor’s Shack Do you have a photo or bit of club news to share? An Interesting link? Something to sell or something you are looking for? eMail it to SARCcommunicator @ outlook.com for inclusion in this column. Break-In magazine available for download The New Zealand national amateur radio society the NZART have made the PDF of their Jan/Feb 2016 Break-In magazine available for download Download Break-In from URL: http://www.nzart.org.nz/h-quarter/break-in/ New Zealand has just one class of amateur licence (1 kW RF output). There are no practical tests to take just a single 60 question multiple choice paper. 40 questions must be answered correctly to achieve a pass. All the questions and answers are made available online to assist memorizing. Kitsilano High School Hams I was recently made aware that my old high school, coincidentally the same one that Norm Schmidt VE7IIT attended a couple of decades earlier, is being rebuilt. I also located an old QSL card from the school, addressed to VE4KZ, dated in 1935. The card came from the “Kitsilano High Schools Short Wave Club”, It turns out that Norm’s father taught at Kitsilano during this period and one of the short wave club members, G. M. Schuthe was known to the family. SARC member George Merchant VE7QH Awarded Lifetime Achievement Award "Longtime emergency volunteers recognized by province" - Story at: http://www.nsnews.com/news/longtime-emergency-volunteers-recognized-by-province-1.2248368 Next time you see him, congratulate George Merchant on his award for Lifetime Achievement from the 2016 Public Safety Lifeline Volunteer Awards, presented by Emergency Management BC. George’s contributions to amateur radio and emergency communications in BC cannot be understated and we’re very excited that George is receiving such recognition for all his hard work and dedication. Page 13 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Page 13—News You Can Lose The Lighter Side of Amateur Radio WASHINGTON, D.C. – Questions around U.S. President Barack Obama’s recent NPOOTA activation have some Washington insiders vowing to prevent the contacts from being confirmed. According to White House activity logs, Obama – who holds the callsign NØBMA – decided on a spontaneous pizza run Friday afternoon to the Georgetown Pizza Pit. After finishing a Chicago-style pie and boxing up the leftovers to bring home to his family, the president spent 45 minutes in the parking lot making 37 contacts. A spokesman says Mr. Obama uploaded the contacts to Logbook of the Globe upon arriving back to the White House. Republicans immediately began questioning the validity of the contacts. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says the QSOs are no good. “The antenna was 12 feet from the pizza oven, a clear violation of the rules, thus voiding any contacts,” said McConnell. House Speaker Paul Ryan, holding the party line, remains firm in saying, “we will not confirm any of the QSOs until after the new president is in place next year, even for those that included green stamps in QSL envelopes.” At a Sacramento rally yesterday, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump weighed in on the NPOOTA issue. “People are asking me about NPOOTA. They have questions. And I will say this: it’s a huge project. Everywhere I go, people are asking about pizza oven activations. It’s crazy. Make no mistake, they are being activated,” said Trump. A spokesman says NPOOTA has “reenergized the president’s interest in ham radio and he plans to chase pizza oven activations for the remainder of his term” using a G5RV recently installed at the White House. ~ hamhijinks.com Officials Vow to Block Obama Contacts Otto Eppers’ QSL Card Of The Month. Don’t know Otto? See The Communicator September 2015 U.S. President Barack Obama waves after activating the Georgetown Pizza Pit using the recently installed Comet mobile antenna visible in the photo. Page 14 The SARC Communicator June 2016 I want to share my experience with those of you who have recently passed their test and are looking for that perfect HF antenna that will suite their “New Shack” at their home location. My thoughts were focused on an antenna that would cover as many of the Ham bands as possible, that could be hidden on my apartment patio deck. I did, as most of you will, a lot of reading on the subject and eventually chose a Current Loop Antenna that was the rave in the UK and it set me back about $350 with shipping and tax. I set it up on my patio and I started to tune through the Ham bands and hardly heard a thing, I mean that, apart from static and a couple of stations, one in Alaska talking to a fellow in California, I heard nothing. I was beginning to think that there was something wrong with my Radio, a brand new Icom 7100 and John Brodie very kindly invited me to his home and we attached my radio to his antenna. The radio immediately jumped to life with more stations than I could count. I tried several CQ calls and was rewarded with a reply from South Carolina some 2600 miles away, on 70 watts. What a thrill that was. Now knowing that my radio was in perfect shape, I again started to search for the perfect antenna. Having proved that my radio was fine, I took the current loop antenna apart and put it where the proverbial squirrel stores his winter supplies and started looking for another antenna. I found an antenna called “The Tarheel Antenna” this is a motorized Multi band antenna with excellent ratings, it is a mobile Antenna that I could mount to my patio railing and also mount it on my vehicle for away from home outings. Well, although I could hear more stations compared to the Current loop, they were so far below the noise level that they were not useful at all. Having spent another $700 plus on the Tarheel I still did not have a working antenna. All of the successful Hams will tell you that your success is based on Antenna, Antenna, Antenna. I have reached the conclusion that my location is in a null zone created by the apartment blocks in which I live. The HF Spectrum is a fickle thing sent to try us. Imagine, if you will, a letter L reversed, the bottom leg runs North South and the vertical leg runs East West, the vertical leg being south of the bottom leg. I live on the East side of the bottom leg on the second floor, rite in the corner created by the bottom leg and the vertical leg. My location is protected by both of the apartment blocks. My mistake was trying to buy the antenna that would cover the most HAM bands as possible, right up front, before checking to see if there were any signals at all. My advise to you and the whole reason for this small article, is to choose an antenna that covers one band, lets say the 20 meter band. Try to buy the cheapest antenna you can find, within reason, try to stay away from the Chinese antennas, they are usually of very poor quality. Put up the antenna at night if you are like me and live in an apartment, if you live in a house you will have a lot more room to play with than apartment dwellers. If you can hear contacts that are well above the noise level, have fun and start to build your log book. If like me, you hear little or nothing, you have just saved yourself a ton of money. Buying antennas can be very expensive as I have found to my sorrow. I have not, however given up. There are lots of opportunities as a mobile station with my Tarheel antenna and setting up, as in the Field Day event, in a park with a long wire antenna. In my opinion, the whole idea of being a HAM is to have as much fun as possible with what you have and I certainly intend to do so. ~ Robert VA7FMR All of the successful Hams will tell you that your success is based on Antenna, Antenna, Antenna. Tech Topics Robert Fishwick VA7FMR HF Antennas In A Restricted Space Page 15 The SARC Communicator June 2016 A Course Update John Schouten VE7TI The Exam and New Hams Well, our first SARC Basic Amateur Radio course in a few years concluded on May 17th after seven weeks of instruction. The course was a repeat of the one we taught a few years ago, but with an extensive content review and update to include changes to the 2014 Basic Question Bank. We also shortened it by a week. The availability of some excellent video on YouTube and other sources that were not available earlier, made it much simpler to show an animation or clip to illustrate some points rather than drawing them out on a whiteboard. And believe me, I’m no Rembrandt! The class consisted of a nice mix of age, backgrounds and interests. We had members from Scouting, several of the students were interested for emergency preparedness and we should gain several new Amateurs who took the course purely out of interest for our hobby. All the successful candidates will receive a complimentary introductory one-year membership to SARC. Eleven course participants wrote the exam, another chose to write at a later date. We had some very satisfying results including Lawrence who wrote the Basic exam, achieved 100%, then wrote the Advanced Exam, again scoring 100%... Wow! Several others scored in the 90 percentile, including Sammi, a 16-year old young lady who achieved 96%. All those who scored better than 80% will receive their Basic with Honours qualification providing them privileges on all bands. Two of the class participants came out to the SARC FoxHunt as their first Ham event (photo right). We were able to get them some equipment on loan courtesy of Les Tocko and they set out on the 80m hunt returning within an hour. Thinking they needed some assistance we offered help but it turned out they had located all the foxes! At the conclusion special mention was made of the team of " Bradley and Lawrence "for after completing the 80m run they went back out and Anton re- started their time on the 2m hunt. They located all five foxes in 36 minutes! Talk about an introduction to Ham Radio! Congratulations Bradley and Lawrence. My thanks to John Brodie VA7XB for keeping the course records, supplying refreshments and other assistance. Also to Stan Williams who taught several of the course modules. Thanks also to Surrey Fire Services for the use of their classroom and facilities. We are tentatively planning another course for the fall, so keep this in mind if you have friends or family who have expressed an interest. ~ John VE7TI ...Lawrence who wrote the Basic exam, achieved 100%, then wrote the Advanced Exam, again scoring 100% Bradley and Lawrence receive instructions for their first Amateur Radio event SARC students write the Basic Exam Page 16 The SARC Communicator June 2016 The Annual SARC Foxhunt A Dry Day and Good Times On Saturday, May 21st, Crescent Park in South Surrey was the site of the 2016 SARC Foxhunt (also known as a ‘bunny’ hunt). Anton’s request of the weather Gods apparently had some effect as it was cloudy and cool, but stayed dry. In total 23 people took part. Les Tocko VA7OM was on site early and set out five 2 and 80 metre foxes in areas of the park. Each fox transmits a CW identifier numbered from 1 to 5 so participants can distinguish between their signals. Two of our recent Basic course graduates participated and two more turned out to have a look. Les familiarized the rookies in attendance on the basics of transmitter location techniques and loaned his 2 and 80 metre gear to get them started. Other participant included several SARC members and members of other local clubs. On 80m the hunt is considerably more effective as participants do not have to cope with reflected signals and other complications of 2m propagation. At 10am, after a short briefing by Anton James VE7SSD, the event organizer, the foxes began emitting their beacon in turn and the hunt was on. Each fox was attached to a flag. Once found, the competitors used an attached punch to mark their scoring sheet. The completed sheet was returned to the timekeeper and the elapsed time was recorded. Five 2m ‘and eight 80m hunters’ entered. The fastest (and arguably one of the most experienced) 80m participant was Jan Vozenilek VA7VJ who found all five foxes with an impressive time of only 39 minutes. In the 2m category the top score was attained by Steve VE7FM and Karen Draper who located 5 foxes in 85 minutes. Second was Kapila Jayawera VE7KGK with 4 foxes in 92 minutes and John Brodie VA7XB with 3 foxes in 126 minutes. A team licenced only last week, Bradley and Lawrence located all five 80m foxes in 55 minutes and all five 2m foxes in 36 minutes. The 80m third place went to Henry Dahl VE7HRY with five foxes in 64 minutes. An excellent barbecue lunch, prepared by Anton’s wife Brenda, was served to xx guests. This social time provided an opportunity for a great exchange of information. Presentation of the coveted crystal bunny [photo left] to the top score in the 80m group and the pink fur bunny to the 2m top score concluded the event. Thanks Anton for organizing another great, and fun SARC event! The coordination of Brenda and Anton ensured a successful event. Page 17 The SARC Communicator June 2016 And the winners are... More photos at URL: tinyurl.com/FoxHunt16 The ARDF (foxhunting) training at Central park in Burnaby is only a few days away. You all are invited. If you do not have a receiver come anyway, we will have spare ones that you can borrow. This is an 80m training event. But if you come with a 2m receiver we will put out a couple of 2m foxes as well. Date: June 4 (Saturday) 10:00 am - 1:00 pm Location: Central Park, Boundary Road, Burnaby (49°13'25.0"N 123°01'14.6"W) I look forward to seeing you there. ~ Les VA7OM Page 18 The SARC Communicator June 2016 SARC recently received the Ham Shack contents from the estate of Bill Parks VE7ATR (SK). It is currently stored at the clubhouse and a number of items will be made available to SARC members in the near future. A SARC Donation From the Estate of Bill Parks VE7ATR (SK) Stan VA7NF and John VA7XB enjoyed reminiscing over the Hallicrafters S-40 shown, the same receiver they both owned when first licensed in the early 1960s. Most of the other items bequeathed by William Parkes to SARC take the old-timers back 5 decades to an era when radio and test equipment looked and operated quite differently from their modern counterparts. Page 19 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Every month I ask for your questions, comments, and ideas so that I can continue to write Adam’s Junk Box. I’m starting to come to the end of the things that I can think of to write about and really do need you to help me to be able to keep these articles coming! I’ve had a lot of positive feedback, and I really want to keep writing articles, but without your input I don’t think I’ll be able to do it. I have a file containing every suggestion I’ve been given as well as all of the ideas I’ve come up with. I’ve checked off nearly every one of them, and the remaining ones are not things that I have enough experience with to effectively and accurately write about. Please, please, please, keep feeding me ideas, questions, suggestions, or any other relevant thing you want to read about. I need your input! To drive this point home, I’m going to force you to re-read the very first article I ever wrote for the Communicator, with some updating, revising, and improving. So there! The $20 Spectrum Analyzer It’s a well known fact that many hams love test equipment. I’m talking about a love that borders on obsession. Our stations just aren't complete unless they are jam-packed with enough test equipment to outfit an MIT engineering lab, along with enough radio monitoring gear to make the NSA jealous. Just like it is when acquiring ham radios, too much is simply never enough. I'm no exception to this. In fact, I am exactly the one who I am describing in the previous paragraph. When I got my amateur radio license in 2008, the only test equipment I had was a couple of trusty Fluke multimeters. Now, only eight years later, I have several frequency counters, several oscilloscopes, several SWR meters, several signal generators, a modulation meter, a service monitor, a capacitor leakage tester I built myself, a tube tester, several trusty Fluke multimeters, and enough other things that I can’t even remember them all. And this was all acquired on a modest budget (thank you, NEARfest!). However, the one piece of test equipment that I’ve always wanted but could never seem to lay my hands on was a spectrum analyzer. Good ones can cost many thousands of dollars, and even the old used ones that occasionally show up at NEARfest tend to stay well out of range of my wallet. For those of you unfamiliar with spectrum analyzers: they are similar in many ways to oscilloscopes, but they display data in the frequency domain instead of the time domain. Yeah, that's as clear as mud. What they do, in simple terms, is allow you to look at a large chunk of radio spectrum all at once in a handy visual format. In other words, if you are looking at a chunk of the 2 meter band, you could tell by the location of the spikes on the display which frequencies have signals on them. Very handy if you’re looking for someone to talk to. A true spectrum analyzer does a heck of a lot more than just this, but this hopefully gives you an idea of the most basic function of one. The rest is mostly all math anyway, and who wants to mess around with math? Eww. Adam’s Tech Topics Adam Foley N1RKW Spectrum Analysis On A Budget For those of you unfamiliar with spectrum analyzers: they are similar in many ways to oscilloscopes, but they display data in the frequency domain instead of the time domain Page 20 The SARC Communicator June 2016 This is what using the RTL-SDR to listen to Metallica on 102.9 MHz looks like, with signals from several other FM radio stations visible. Who said hams don’t rock! Needless to say, when I stumbled upon a QRZ posting referring to using a $20 - $25 European digital TV receiver (called an RTL-SDR or a DVB-T dongle) as a spectrum analyzer I was more than a little bit intrigued. The price was something I could handle, so I said, “What the heck!” and gave it a try. Wasn't I surprised when the darn thing actually worked, and worked well all the way from 24 MHz to 1.7 GHz! That's a huge amount of radio spectrum from a device that was never intended to be used as a radio receiver. There’s a Lot of radio in that little USB stick! Just to be clear, it is not a simple plug-n- play device if you want to use it as anything other than a way to watch European TV, something that’s exceptionally difficult to do here in North America. However, if you are patient and willing to spend a bit of time on the internet during the setup process, you can end up with a rather handy little addition to your collection of radios and test equipment. This is the part that may cause issues for some people, depending on what they are using for computer hardware and software. It didn’t take me too long to do, as I let a program called Zadig.exe handle the driver installation. More info can (and should) be found in places like rtl-sdr.com and the various blogs that describe setting up one of these little gems. The internet changes too often and too ridiculously for me to give you functional links here. Google is your friend. The SDR software I use is a free package called SDRSharp or SDR# for short (there are other free SDR programs out there, such as HD-SDR, but I found SDR# to be the easiest to work with. Your mileage may vary). It doesn't give you all of the features of a $5000 purpose-built analyzer, but it does enough to be useful for ham radio, and it's FREE. Expect to spend some time getting familiar with the software and getting it to talk to the SDR stick. This could be relatively easy, as it was for me, or it could be next to impossible, as it was for my poor father. What you have for a computer and its OS seems to make a large difference in ease of setup. There is one other minor setup issue I had to deal with: the antenna connector. While there are a few of these SDRs available with other connectors, most come with a tiny little MCX connector. There are MCX to BNC adapter cables on the market, and I suggest getting one instead of hacking two cables apart and soldering them together like I did. After figuring out that this didn’t work very well, I soldered a short length of coax with a BNC connector on the end directly to the circuit board of the SDR stick. Obviously this solution isn’t for everyone and risks damaging the board (and definitely damages the plastic housing as you need a way to get the coax out of the thing), so the MCX/BNC adapter is probably the best way to go. A note of caution: not all of these SDR devices come with front end overload protection, so if you fire off your 100-watt Page 21 The SARC Communicator June 2016 transmitter without disconnecting the SDR's antenna first, you may end up letting the magic blue smoke out. Actually, 100W will almost certainly set fire to your RTL- SDR no matter how much front end protection it has, so definitely do not share antennas with your HF rig and your SDR! That being said, even if your SDR receiver is on a separate antenna, it’s still a good idea to disconnect it before transmitting, as you may induce enough voltage into the SDR to damage it. They may be cheap, but they aren’t free. Even the richest hams prefer not to set their wallets on fire. Once you have it set up, it couldn't be easier to use. Plug the SDR stick into a handy USB port on your computer, start SDR Sharp and hit the “Play” button, and you'll see and hear whatever the SDR sees and hears. You can easily tune around, scan a MHz at a time, or do direct frequency entry. There's lots to see out there, everything from broadcast band wide-FM transmissions to spread spectrum signals in odd places (including one I was surprised to find at 445 MHz until I remembered that 70cm is shared spectrum) to digital public safety transmissions. The software does not decode digital signals (there is additional software that can do that, but I was never able to get it working properly), but can be used to listen to any analog mode including upper and lower side-band, AM, FM, and even CW. You can use almost anything for an antenna, but for obvious reasons different antennas will work better in different parts of the spectrum. If you're really serious about this, a discone antenna would probably give the best wideband performance. However, I use a simple 2-meter j-pole (don’t I always?) and it works well enough for my needs. Anyone know what this signal might be? Me neither. There is a lot you can do with one of these cheap little wonder radios. I often use mine for watching repeater input and output frequencies during the weekly nets. It's nice to see who I can hear on simplex and who I can't. Check it out. They are also useful for testing transceivers, measuring signal strength, checking frequency stability, or they can simply be used as another receiver in the shack. They can even be used on HF if you add an upconverter to the mix (do an internet search for “Ham It Up upconverter”, they run about $45). I added a Guest Columnist Adam Foley N1RKW is a member of the Central New Hampshire Amateur Radio Club and contributes a monthly column “Adam’s Junk Box” to their newsletter, also called The Communicator. Adam also has a YouTube Channel Page 22 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Adam Foley N1RKW has been around ham radio most of his life, but didn't smarten up and get his license until 2008. Since then he has gone on to great heights (the 12' high roof of his old house, and the 3rd floor apartment he's in now), and recently decided to take up writing a monthly column about ham radio and electronics, two of the subjects he knows a little bit about (but not much). He lives in Laconia, NH with his incredibly tolerant wife and equally tolerant son and can be reached at I can be reached by email via N1RKW at hotmail dot com. Ham-It-Up to one of my RTL-SDRs, shoved the whole thing into a metal box, and called it a wideband receiver which ranges from below AM radio around 600 KHz all the way up to 1700 MHz. Not bad for a total investment of less than $70 (I had the metal case in my junque pile). Okay, by now I'm sure you're wondering where one of these little gems can be had, or perhaps you're just sick of my writing and want to get on to the useful information already. RTL-SDRs are available on sites like this one: http://www.nooelec.com/store/ Nooelec is a reputable vendor and the best place I am aware of to buy these devices. I had originally written that you should be sure to buy one that that specifies the RTL2832U+R820T chipset. These are still good, but there have been some good improvements in the last few years, and Nooelec has a number of SDRs for sale with improved chipsets that go for only a little more than the base model. They also sell the Ham-It-Up upconverters, and a number of other accessories. They’re a great place to start, if you’re interested in getting into RTL-SDRs. There are also a number of newer, purpose built, SDRs coming into the market, such as SDRPlay and HackRF. These cost a lot more, but they are worth a lot more! They have excellent features including better front end filtering and wider bandwidth, among other things. Some of them can even transmit! They are well worth considering, but an RTL-SDR is cheap enough that it might be a good idea to try one out just to see if you like it. While the RTL-SDR isn't a piece of lab- grade test equipment, its small price makes it an easy-to-justify addition to the ham shack. Besides, how else can you get a general coverage receiver, a bandscope, and a spectrum analyzer for only $20? SDRs are becoming more and more common, and some current generation radios are actually SDRs in disguise. A good example of this, from what I’ve been told, are the ever popular Baofungus handheld radios that are being bought by the millions by hams and other radio users alike because of their cheap price. SDRs have numerous advantages over traditional radios, most relating to lower production costs (purchase price might still still be ridiculous: Flex) and increased flexibility. I suspect that it won’t be long before SDRs are just as common as traditional radios in the amateur radio hobby. See what you made me do here? In all seriousness, I really do need your suggestions and questions to keep this going. I don’t have an infinite reserve of knowledge, and I just can’t keep writing Adam’s Junk Box without your help. Please email me with anything you think I should write about. My email hasn’t changed, it’s my call sign at hotmail. Nice and simple. I look forward to hearing from you! ~ Adam Foley N1RKW Reprinted with permission (Continued from page 21) Page 23 The SARC Communicator June 2016 The BC Swap Net I recently became aware of a buy—sell—trade website for Hams in BC. Known as the BC Swap Net at URL: http://www.bcswap.ca/ it has a selection of HF, 2m and other gear, antennas and accessories. Dealing with a BC Ham should make you feel a bit safer about an Internet purchase although you should adhere to common sense rules about anything you but via the Internet. The guidelines: 1. The purpose of BCSwap.ca is to provide a forum for the buying, selling or trading of amateur radio equipment on a non-commercial basis. 2. Transactions are strictly between the buyer and the seller. 3. Listings are made through the use of the web-based form. 4. The posting of your items on BCSwap.ca is at the discretion of the webmaster. 5. In the interests of clarity and brevity, listings may be edited by the webmaster. 6. The accuracy of the For Sale item description is the responsibility of the seller. 7. Listings are retained for 4 weeks - after which they may be re-listed. 8. Please limit your listing to a maximum of 10 items (except estate sales) 9. The list of equipment for sale and wanted is updated as changes are received, however, delays of 1 or 2 days may occur. 10.CAUTION: BCSwap.ca takes listings from North American stations ONLY. Do your due diligence in ALL your buying or selling transactions, especially if you receive interest in your listing from outside North America. There may be scammers out there anxious to take your money or your equipment! To list an item CLICK HERE To CHANGE or DELETE a listing please send an email to email@example.com Emergency Comms Ham Radio Making A Difference Help Needed in Blaine, WA A request has been received for Amateur Radio operators to assist across the border in Blaine, WA for their July 4th Independence Day celebrations. Joes Zaccaria is their Deputy Manager for auxiliary communications and wrote: “Our city of 6,000 becomes 30-40,000. There is a parade, car show, street fair along H Street and evening fireworks after sunset. Blaine ACS normally will man roadblocks around the area, deploy a portable repeater and communications van and maintain net control. We also patrol the area and report to net control any issues for police or fire response. This year we have around 14 posts to man around the city and due to the usual heat in July, give people breaks and rests. Things normally start with a briefing at the police department, followed by roadblocks going up at around 06:30am. Things in town wrap up around 5pm. Generally the PD and a few ACS folks help with fireworks. ACS Manager Chris was wondering if your organization might be able to provide operators with handhelds, reflective vests and uniforms if you have them, to help with this event. People can sign up for 4 hours or the whole day, as they wish. Generally the Police Department provides lunches and we have a rover distribute water in a regular basis. Blaine ACS can issue letters that make it clear that folks are volunteering and that should be acceptable at the border. Please let us know if your group can assist and if so, the names and hours your people would like to volunteer for.” ~ Joe Zaccaria Deputy Manager – Blaine Auxiliaiary Communications Service (ACS) Amateur Radio Call Sign W7BWA Cell: 360-510-4054 Page 24 The SARC Communicator June 2016 “Good evening to the stations listening and welcome to the Surrey Amateur Radio Club weekly two meter net. This is VA7YEE, my name is Garvin, and I will be your net control this evening. For the duration of the net, I will use the club callsign, of Victor Echo Seven Sierra Alpha Romeo …” That is SARC, Surrey Amateur Radio club, Tuesday night net script goes. If you don’t believe me, check it out on their website; WWW.VE7SAR NET For those of you, that do not know me, I am visually impaired. That is, I’m totally blind and squeak like a mouse, that’s because I keep bumping into things, eek eek. But I digress. I got my radio license, august 2012. I didn’t get my radio, a Kenwood TMV-71A till early 2013. Now I can partake on my new adventure, as a ‘ham’ radio operator. I quickly discovered and listened to SARC’s weekly Tuesday night net. I found it interesting and terrifying at the same time. I was so scared, I only listened to the net, never attempted to call in. I figured that I would listen, learn what and how to say it, before I make a fool of myself. I’ve had radio experience before. So I knew I could do it, yet I kept psyching (eek eek) myself out. If I recall, it took me about four to six weeks, before I made my first check in. The net controller that night, welcomed me, which really pleased me. I didn’t make a fool of myself. Because I’m visually impaired, I cannot read in the conventional way. On my computer, I use the software JAWS, Jobs Activated With Speech. That is, the program reads to me, just like an audio book. So when I downloaded the SARC Tuesday night script, I began committing it to memory. It didn’t take long, before I was mouthing the script with the net controller that night. If they were slow, missed a step, I caught it, feeling confident, that I knew the script. Yet armed with this knowledge, I never took the next step. I knew I could probably do it, being Net control, but I never got past the thinking stage. Talking, eek eek, myself out of doing it. Fast forward to early 2016. Due to urging by several radio operators, with more experience than I, finally over came my lack of self esteem. I chose to be Net Control, for the Surrey Emergency Program for Amateur Radio, SEPAR, instead of SARC. There were two reasons for this. I initially got my license, so I could be part of SEPAR. Secondly, the script seemed shorter than SARC’s. So with Dixie VA7DIX, who helped me learn the SEPAR script, I did it in her scheduled time slot. I had memorized it, practiced it and even simultaneously said it with the current net controller on the air that night. I was ready, or as ready as I could be. Drum roll please. I was scheduled to do SEPAR’s Tuesday night net, at 1930 hours. All day long, I kept rehearsing the script. At 19:25 hours, I began my role as net control. (Be still my little heart) I now have five minutes, before I begin net, as net control. A Look From The Blind Side Garvin Yee (SARC Net Manager) Net Control Page 25 The SARC Communicator June 2016 If I recall, I did pretty well. In that, I didn’t make as many mistakes as I thought I would. If there was one flaw, I sometimes spoke too fast. I received a lot of encouragement and praise, for being my first time.:) Four weeks later, my second time at being net control, was a total disaster. After squeaking out the first few lines, my mind went totally blank. Whatever I had memorized, had totally disappeared. I was so rattled, I couldn’t even read/repeat my script file in the computer. If I could hide under a rock, I would have. I now have about six Tuesday nights behind me now, and I’m feeling quite confident. Now, my next challenge is to be net control for SARC. I cheated, eek eek, by volunteering to be Net Manager, instead of being a net controller. But I digress again. Lol. Things that I have learned as being net control: In the script, it has been suggested, that operator’s speak slowly, enunciate and use phonetics, when identifying your callsign. I found this to be very useful, for I have to type the information for my log keeping. If I don’t find those two little nibs, on the F & J keys, I will misspell/mistype the letters. Oops, slowing things down. I found that some radio operators speak too fast. In that, their first few letters, be it ‘VA’ or ‘VE’ is cut off, but I usually catch the 7, which is standard anyway. Sometimes the last three prefixes, spoken normally, can sometimes sound the same, especially if there’s noise during transmission. So I ask you, wait that extra second, before speaking, otherwise I’ll keep asking you to repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Because I have to type the information for my log keeping or receiving a message, I’m creating dead air, the net controller’s faux pas. For this, I apologize. So in summary, anyone and everyone can be a net controller. I did. So with that said, how about considering being a volunteering to be a Net Controller? The best time to learn and practice being net controller, is try it out during the summer months. Tuesday nights during the summer months, is less stressful. Fewer operator who check in. Good time to practice, learning without much pressure. If you determine that being net controller is not for you, you could always consider being a backup net controller. This way, you can still help and participate in SARC activities. Be part of the SARC team. Remember to check out the website: ve7sar.net Thank you. 73 ~ Garvin VA7YEE ...anyone and everyone can be a net controller. Frequency TV Series Trailer The CW Television Network has released a trailer for their upcoming TV drama series Frequency staring Peyton List. Based on the movie Frequency, released in 2000, the TV series centers on Raimy (Peyton List), a police detective in 2016 who discovers that she is able to speak via a ham radio with her estranged father, Frank Sullivan (Riley Smith) who died in 1996. The show is expected to air in the Fall. Given the usual inaccuracies about Amateur Radio on network TV shows this could be a comedy. Click on Peyton’s photo (right) for a preview trailer. Page 26 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Emergency Comms Ham Radio Making A Difference VECTOR Distributes Tonnes Of Batteries E-Comm, the Regional 9-1-1 Centre, is upgrading their UPS capacity and as a result had tonnes of high-rate Absorbent Glass Matt (AGM) batteries to truck to recycling. As they were not quite halfway through their useful life, The Vancouver Emergency Community Telecommunications Organization (VECTOR) inquired whether we could take them for community use. E-Comm was willing from the start, with one proviso: we had to take all of them. I was somewhat concerned that we would not be able to find new homes for so many units in the short window of time we had, but the offer was too good to pass up and those fears proved unfounded in the end. What we distributed to the community: High discharge rate capable AGM batteries 141 Ampere-hour capacity @ 20 hour rate Deliver 15A for roughly 8 hours Maximum discharge current of 800A ~4 years old; 10 year rated lifespan 160 units in total 45kg each or 7,200 kgs in total No broken backs that we are aware of Of the 160 available to us, 141 units were distributed to Amateur Radio organizations all over Metro Vancouver. We reached out to groups from the North Shore south to the border and from the ocean east to Langley and Abbotsford. Of course as word spread demand did outstrip supply; we are pleased that across the region a wide variety of groups, radio projects, and community resources will benefit from these units. Below left is a photo of four of these batteries already in their new home backing up the UBC repeater system VE7RHS. I helped lug them up there on Monday. Carting the old out was a lot easier! ~ Mike Watkins VE7WV We are grateful to VECTOR and would like to especially recognize Gary and Mike for their efforts on behalf of Amateur Radio. — Ed. John VE7TI, Stan VA7NF and John VA7XB at the clubhouse unloading one of the batteries we received for SARC and SEPAR. Top: VECTOR President Gary Webb VA7GMW, John VE7TI and VECTOR Secretary Mike Watkins VE7WV load batteries. Page 27 The SARC Communicator June 2016 June 2016 Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat 1 SARC Exec Meeting 2 3 SEA-PAC HamFest Seaside, OR June 3-5 4 0900 Klub Koffee Klatch: Kalmar Family Restaurant, King George Blvd & 81st Ave. CONTEST: New England QSO Party 5 6 7 1915 SEPAR Net 2000 SARC Net 8 SARC Annual General Meeting 9 10 11 0900 Klub Koffee Klatch: Kalmar Family Restaurant, King George Blvd & 81st Ave. 12 13 14 1915 SEPAR Net 2000 SARC Net 15 16 17 18 0900 Klub Koffee Klatch: Kalmar Family Restaurant, King George Blvd & 81st Ave. CONTEST: All Asian DX (CW) 19 Father’s Day CONTEST: All Asian DX (CW) 20 21 1915 SEPAR Net 2000 SARC Net 22 SARC Exec Meeting 23 24 25 0800 Klub Koffee Klatch: Note Time Change Kalmar Family Restaurant, King George Blvd & 81st Ave. 11am FIELD DAY 26 11am FIELD DAY Wrap-Up 27 28 1915 SEPAR Net 2000 SARC Net 29 30 CONTEST: Canada Day Contest (CW & Phone) 1 Canada Day 2 Contest Details: http://hornucopia.com/contestcal/contestcal.html For details on all SARC events, go to ve7sar.net For details on all SEPARS events, go to separ.shutterfly.com/calendar ‘65 Herman Munster gets his Ham Radio license—Click above Page 28 The SARC Communicator June 2016 On the Web ve7sar.net Between newsletters, watch your e-mail for announcements of events, monthly meetings and training opportunities. These announcements can also be found on our web page, or via: Twitter @ve7sar FaceBook SurreyAmateurRadio Our YouTube Channel SurreyARC SARC Photo Albums Web Albums or tinyurl.com/SARCphoto CLUB EXECUTIVE 2015-2016 PRESIDENT Stan Williams VA7NF (and SEPAR Liaison) VICE PRESIDENT Brett Garrett VE7GM SECRETARY Jeremy Morse VE7TMY TREASURER Scott Hawrelak VE7HA DIRECTORS John Brodie, VA7XB (Membership) John Schouten VE7TI (Communicator Editor) Mike Plant VE7AT (Repeater Manager) Bill Gipps VE7XS Al Peterson VA7ALZ Question B-003-012-010 In a SSB transmission, the carrier is: A. transmitted with one sideband B. inserted at the transmitter C. of no use at the receiver D. reinserted at the receiver In radio communications, a sideband is a band of frequencies higher than or lower than the carrier frequency, containing power as a result of the modulation process. The sidebands consist of all the components of the modulated signal except the carrier. All forms of modulation produce sidebands. Amplitude modulation of a carrier signal normally results in two mirror-image sidebands. The signal components above the carrier frequency constitute the upper sideband (USB), and those below the carrier frequency constitute the lower sideband (LSB). In conventional AM transmission, the carrier and both sidebands are present, sometimes called double sideband amplitude modulation (DSB-AM). In some forms of AM, the carrier may be removed, producing double sideband with suppressed carrier (DSB-SC). Transmission in which only one sideband is transmitted is called single-sideband transmission or SSB. SSB is the predominant voice mode on HF radio other than shortwave broadcasting. Since the sidebands are mirror images, which sideband is used is a matter of convention so, for example the 80m band is Lower SideBand (LSB) while the 20m band uses the Upper SideBand (USB). In SSB, the carrier is suppressed, significantly reducing the power requirement (by up to 12 dB) without affecting the information in the sideband. This makes for more efficient use of transmitter power and RF bandwidth, but a Beat Frequency Oscillator (BFO) must be used at the receiver to reconstitute the carrier, thus reinserting it. Another way to look at an SSB receiver is as an RF-to-audio frequency transposer: in USB mode, the dial frequency is subtracted from each radio frequency component to produce a corresponding audio component, while in LSB mode each incoming radio frequency component is subtracted from the dial frequency. The correct answer therefore is: D. reinserted at the receiver ~ John VE7TI Back to Basics John Schouten VE7TI From The Basic Question Bank All About Antennas Here is a free book all about antennas. It appears to be well written and examines a number of different antennas types. As your antenna is every bit as important as your transceiver, you may find some useful information: http://qrznow.com/all-about-antennas-part-1-book-free Page 29 The SARC Communicator June 2016 Down The Log… SARC Monthly Meetings 2nd Wed. (Sept-Jun) 1900 hr at the PREOC Emergency Mgmt BC 14275 96th Avenue, Surrey, BC Weekly Club Breakfast Saturday at 0900 hr Kalmar Family Restaurant 8076 King George Blvd. Surrey SARC Net Tuesday at 2000 hr local on 147.360 MHz (+) Tone=110.9 SEPARS Net Tuesday at 1915 hr local on 147.360 MHz (+) Tone=110.9 VE7RSC Repeaters 2m: 147.360MHz+ Tone= 110.9Hz IRLP node 1736 Echolink node 496228 1.2m: 223.960 Mhz -1.6 Tone=110.9 70cm: 443.775MHz+ Tone= 110.9Hz IRLP node 1737 It’s June Our Annual General Meeting is this month, please attend—it’s an important meeting. No less important is Field Day, June 25-26. As many of you know, we have put a great deal of effort into past Field Days and have scored very well… Number one in Canada overall last year! This year we have decided to let the other local clubs have a chance and we are scaling back. This is largely due to the fact that we have a ready-made facility—our new clubhouse— available to us. No weather issues and no extensive setup or take down. We plan to make it more of a social than a competitive event, so please join us, or at least drop in for a look. SARC Net 20:00 Hrs 1st Tuesday Standby Drew VA7DRW Brett VE7GM 2nd Tuesday Standby Jinty VA7JMR Sheldon VA7XNL 3rd Tuesday Standby Dixie VA7DIX Ralph VA7UB 4th Tuesday Standby Kapila VE7KGK John VA7XB 5th Tuesday Standby Robert VA7FMR Vacant Want a turn at Net Control? Contact the SARC Net Manager SARC hosts an Amateur Radio net each Tuesday evening at 8 PM. Please tune in to the VE7RSC repeater at 147.360 MHz (+600 KHz) Tone=110.9, also acces- sible on IRLP node 1736 and Echolink node 496228. On UHF we operate a r e p e a t e r o n 443.775MHz (+5Mhz) Tone=110.9 or IRLP Node 1737. Page 30 The SARC Communicator June 2016 We Have A SARC Patch! These are suitable for sewing on a jacket, cap or your jammies, so you can proudly display your support for the club. The price is $4 each or three for $10 and they can be picked up at a meeting or the weekly Koffee We thank our sponsors for their SARC support. Please support them. firstname.lastname@example.org (604) 800-4042 Page 31 The SARC Communicator June 2016 NOTICE OF ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING of the SURREY AMATEUR RADIO CLUB JUNE 8, 2016 AT 7:00 PM EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT BC OFFICES 14275 96TH AVENUE, SURREY, BC Note AGENDA 1. Welcome, call to order and confirmation of quorum 2. Approval of agenda 3. Approval of 2015 AGM minutes 4. Presentation and approval of Annual Financial Statements 5. Amendments to the SARC Constitution & Bylaws 6. Announcements 7. Committee reports 8. Other/new business 9. Election of Directors 10. Adjournment CALL FOR NOMINATIONS Members elect up to 8 Directors, each serving a 2-year term. Directors in caucus appoint the President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. Directors continuing for the second year of their 2-year term are: Schouten, John VE7TI Plant, Mike VE7AT Hawrelak, Scott. VE7HA Nominations will be taken from the floor. Only members in good standing may vote at the AGM This requires that dues be paid for the 2016/2017 fiscal year prior to, or at, the AGM. Note The PREOC may be activated. If so we may have to amend the location of the AGM. Members will be notified via email if there is a change of venue. Page 32 The SARC Communicator June 2016 June 10, 2015 Introduction The meeting was brought to order by President John Brodie VA7XB at 1900 hr. Visitor Guy Immega VA7GI from Vancouver was introduced by Jim Smith VE7FO and welcomed. Later visitor Nicholas Mufford VE7NEM from Langley was also welcomed. The AGM agenda was reviewed and a motion accepted for approval; the motion carried. John asked for any corrections on the minutes of the 2014 AGM (which had been re-published in the June Communicator), and with no corrections being brought forth, called for a motion to approve last year’s AGM minutes; the motion carried. Annual Financial Report The audited financial report, including the balance statement and income statement, was presented by Scott Hawrelak VE7HA. It was noted that the bank balance for the chequing and savings accounts exceeded last year’s combined balance by $1853. Not including equipment depreciation, income was reported as exceeding expenses by $1821; both results were largely due to windfall income derived from the sale of donated equipment. Without this, income and expenses would have been approximately in balance. A motion to approve the financial statement was made. Another motion that a gift certificate of $75 be given to Paulette Schouten as thanks for her professional work in auditing the books was made. Both motions carried. A revised membership fee schedule was introduced that provided for a 50% fee reduction applicable to long-term SARC members, i.e. those members who had a continuous club membership of 25 years or more. A motion was made to approve the fee schedule; the motion carried. Keenan VE7XEN suggested that consideration be given to a fee reduction for members under financial hardship; it was agreed that this suggestion would be considered by the Executive, with a recommendation brought forth to the membership in the Fall. Announcements Al Peterson VA7ALZ reviewed the status of the raffle and Cruise-in. Noting that only 18 books of tickets (out of 125 books available) had been given out, he requested that all members take one or two books and sell them before the Sept 5th Cruise-in, with cash and stubs to be returned by the end of August. He also requested that volunteers commit to helping at SARC’s booth. A sample hi-vis vest proposed for purchase by SARC members for use at the Foxhunt, Cruise-in, Field Day and other SARC events, was displayed by Al. A suggestion that the club purchase a number of vests and re-sell to members at cost, with or without a sew-on SARC badge, was favourably received by the members present, and will be pursued by the Executive over the summer. John VA7XB announced that the 2m net would continue on an informal basis throughout the summer, with net control by whomever is available. Regarding the Friday breakfast meet, a decision will be made by the regular attendees whether or not to continue over the summer. A name badge order will be placed by Scott VE7HA in September. Members were reminded that the after- Your 2015—2016 Executive 2016 Annual General Meeting Minutes Of The 2015 Annual General Meeting Officers: President: Stan Williams VA7NF (SEPAR Liaison) Vice-President: Brett Garrett VE7GM Secretary: Jeremy Morse VE7TMY Treasurer: Scott Hawrelak VE7HA Directors: John Brodie VA7XB (Membership) Bill Gipps VE7XS Al Peterson VA7ALZ Mike Plant VE7AT (Repeater Manager) John Schouten VE7TI (Newsletter Editor) Page 33 The SARC Communicator June 2016 At the upcoming May General Meeting a motion will be proposed to amend our SARC bylaws as follows: SARC Annual General Meeting Al Peterson VE7ALZ Notice Of Motion: Bylaw Changes Currently Reads Proposed Amendment Add 5e. Meetings of the Executive shall be at the call of the President. 5e. Meetings of the Executive shall be at the call of the President or Executive majority and held at a mutually agreed upon location. 6f. All committees must report to the Executive monthly. 6g. All committee members must be members in good standing 7c. For a person to be accepted as a nominee for the position of Director, that person shall be a member in good standing with the Club. 7c. For a person to be accepted as a nominee for the position of Director, that person shall be a member of the Club for a minimum of one year in good standing with the Club. 7k. Only members whose annual dues are paid by the AGM are eligible to vote. 10c. The Director spending limit shall be an amount approved by a majority of the members at a regular scheduled general meeting. 10d. The Director spending limit is defined as the monthly amount the Directors may spend without authorization from the membership. 10e. Expenditures in excess of the spending limit, by a Director, must be discussed and approved by a majority of the Club Directors prior to a vote at a general meeting. 2016 Annual General Meeting meeting social at MacDonalds (Fraser Hwy at 156th St) would continue after the AGM, and consideration will be given later to changing the future location of the social. John VA7XB suggested that get-togethers would be held on the normal meeting night in July and August at a different MacDonalds (72nd Ave near King George Blvd) for those interested. The Fall/winter program was announced as follows: September – task assignments and in-house swap meet (also project demos, as later determined) October – John White VA7JW on baluns November – George VE7QH on the BC Amateur Radio Coordination Council December – Christmas party There being no new business, the meeting broke for coffee, then resumed with Committee reports. Committee Reports Reports were presented in the following order: Communicator (John VE7TI) Membership (John VE7TI) Cruise-in/Raffle (Al VA7ALZ) Website (Howard VA7HTZ) Net (Rob VE7CZV) Repeater (George VE7QH) Equipment (Rick VE7GMO Inventory (Anton VE7SSD) Foxhunt (Anton VE7SSD) Contest Group (Brett VE7GM) Satellite Group (John VA7XB) QSL Manager (John VA7XB for Heinz VA7AQ) RAC (Bill VE7XS) The reports are not included in these minutes, but will be published later in the Communicator. Election of Directors Bill Gipps VE7XS conducted the election of Directors. John Schouten VE7TI advised that 40 members had paid dues for the new fiscal year and therefore were eligible to vote in the election. It was confirmed that a quorum of more than 25% of the paid membership (equivalent to 10 members) was indeed present, therefore the election could proceed. Bill VE7XS advised that the bylaws provide for a maximum of 8 Directors, each elected for a 2-year term staggered such that 4 are elected each year, with the Directors subsequently appointing by consensus a President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. Bill noted that 5 Directors, being in the 2nd year of their term (5 Directors instead of 4, due to an anomaly last year), would continue in their duties; these Directors are: Stan Williams VA7NF, Al Peterson VA7ALZ, Bill Gipps VE7XS, Brett Garrett VE7GM and John Brodie VA7XB. Therefore 3 Directors would be elected at this AGM, with nominations for the 3 available positions being: Rob Gilchrist VE7CZV, Scott Hawrelak VE7HA, Al Neufeld VE7CDC, Mike Plant VE7AT, and John Schouten VE7TI. Bill VE7XS asked 3 times for further nominations from the floor and, with none received, closed the nominations and asked for each of the 5 candidates to say a few words about why they wished to be a Director. That having been accomplished, Bill requested that the past President, John VA7XB, outline options available. A variety of opinions was expressed by the members, concluding with a motion made, seconded and approved that the vote proceed. A vote by secret ballot followed, scrutinized by Bill Gipps VE7XS and two members, and the results subsequently announced as follows: Directors elected were: John Schouten VE7TI, Mike Plant VE7AT, and Scott Hawrelak VE7HA. Rob Gilchrist VE7CZV was later thanked for his faithful service as Director and Secretary over the past 2 years. Field Day Planning Stan VA7NF reviewed plans for Field Day with the following reminders: Friday June 26th Pre-event breakfast Kalmar 7:30 am Site setup commences at 10 am Monitor SARC repeater 147.360 (tone 110.9) You must sign PEP signup sheet 2016 Annual General Meeting Page 34 The SARC Communicator June 2016 June 2013 2016 Annual General Meeting Bring your own lunch Bring your own lawn chair Coffee & drinks available Pizza will be provided for setup crew at 6 pm Saturday June 27th FD officially begins 11 am Bring family members in afternoon BYO food Sunday June 28th Take-down commences 11 am Volunteers were confirmed for several outstanding tasks. Stan requested assistance for the trial set up of antennas on Saturday June 13th as well as the Field Day setup on Friday, June 26th. Dixie Mogg VA7DIX volunteered to coordinate a social program if she can get 3 or 4 helpers. Mike Plant VE7AT agreed to host the Public Information table with the help of Kjeld Frederiksen VE7GL, Fred Reichstein VE7MPI and Elizabeth Gilchrist VA7ELA. Members were reminded to take and submit photos for the FD photo contest to SARCCommunicator@outlook.com. Three prizes have been donated and will be awarded for the winning entries. With no time left for the demonstration of members’ battery monitor construction projects, this item was deferred to the September meeting, and the meeting adjourned at 2130 hr. ~ John VA7XB 2016 Annual General Meeting Currently Reads Proposed Amendment Add 5e. Meetings of the Executive shall be at the call of the President. 5e. Meetings of the Executive shall be at the call of the President or Executive majority and held at a mutually agreed upon location. 6f. All committees must report to the Executive monthly. 6g. All committee members must be members in good standing 7c. For a person to be accepted as a nominee for the position of Director, that person shall be a member in good standing with the Club. 7c. For a person to be accepted as a nominee for the position of Director, that person shall be a member of the Club for a minimum of one year in good standing with the Club. 7k. Only members whose annual dues are paid by the AGM are eligible to vote. 10c. The Director spending limit shall be an amount approved by a majority of the members at a regular scheduled general meeting. 10d. The Director spending limit is defined as the monthly amount the Directors may spend without authorization from the membership. 10e. Expenditures in excess of the spending limit, by a Director, must be discussed and approved by a majority of the Club Directors prior to a vote at a general meeting. At the Annual General Meeting a motion will be proposed to amend our SARC bylaws as follows: Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. Bill noted that 5 Directors, being in the 2nd year of their term (5 Directors instead of 4, due to an anomaly last year), would continue in their duties; these Directors are: Stan Williams VA7NF, Al Peterson VA7ALZ, Bill Gipps VE7XS, Brett Garrett VE7GM and John Brodie VA7XB. Therefore 3 Directors would be elected at this AGM, with nominations for the 3 available positions being: Rob Gilchrist VE7CZV, Scott Hawrelak VE7HA, Al Neufeld VE7CDC, Mike Plant VE7AT, and John Schouten VE7TI. Bill VE7XS asked 3 times for further nominations from the floor and, with none received, closed the nominations and asked for each of the 5 candidates to say a few words about why they wished to be a Director. That having been accomplished, Bill requested that the past President, John VA7XB, outline options available. A variety of opinions was expressed by the members, concluding with a motion made, seconded and approved that the vote