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ARRL Sections - Sacramento Valley

Sacramento Valley

Sacramento Valley

Contact Information

Section Name:
Sacramento Valley
Dr. Carol Milazzo, KP4MD
Daytime Phone:
(916) 782-3786
Evening Phone:
(916) 879-7449

Basic Information


Visit our Section website at for the latest updates.

Pacificon 2017 September 2017 News

From the Section Manager

QST Cover

This month's news features reports, photos and videos from our section clubs and members.

Congratulations to Andy Boone, KJ6IYM, on his new appointment as Yuba-Sutter ARES Emergency Coordinator.

ARRL Special Service Club

We are currently recruiting for a Section Affiliated Club Coordinator (ACC). The ACC serves to assist clubs to become ARRL affiliated; to help clubs better serve their members and communities; to motivate clubs to qualify for the prestigious ARRL Special Service Club recognition; and to keep affiliated club information updated annually. Please contact me if you are interested in assisting in this capacity.


September 16 & 17.  Duane Wyatt, WAØMJD seeks one assistant for a Morse Code exhibit and practice station for youth at Sacramento'sFairy Tale Town ScholarShare Book Festival.  Please contact Duane

September 30.  The Golden Empire Scout Council, Pioneer Express District is soliciting operators to demonstrate amateur radio at the Eternal Flame Scout Fellowship Weekend at Gibson Ranch in Elverta, CA.  Lunch will be provided.  Many of the 400-500 Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts who attended last year's event enjoyed their first exposure and on-the-air experience of amateur radio communication.  Please contact me at if you would like to help introduce Scouts to Amateur Radio.


Saturday, September 16.  Mark your calendars and stop by the ARRL booth at theWestern Placer ARC Hamfest in Lincoln, CA.  Download Flyer.

Thursday September 21.  ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Net at 7:30 Pacific Time (details below).

Saturday, October 14.  Section members and clubs are encouraged to participate in our ARRL Exhibit and Special Event Station N6M at the Rocklin Maker Faire at Sierra College, Rocklin, CA (details below).  Please contact me at to join us in this opportunity for public outreach and to promote our local amateur radio and club activities.

ARRL Pacificon Convention Oct. 20-22, 2017

Register online now for the October 20-22, 2017 ‪‎‪‎ARRL‬ Pacificon Division Convention at the San Ramon Marriott. PACIFICON is the annual ARRL Pacific Division convention, held each year in October. It is THE premier amateur radio conference in the western U.S.

If you do not plan to attend the Pacificon convention, reach out to your local Brownies, Cubs, Boys or Girl Scout troop to offer an Amateur Radio demonstration and to support their participation in the Oct. 20-22 Jamboree on the Air (JOTA) to communicate with other scouts around the world.  Offer to help your local Brownies, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts earn the Scouting Radio Merit Badge and the ARRL Girl Scout Radio and Wireless Technology Patch..

Our website, Facebook and Twitter pages are a work in progress, and your suggestions and submissions are always welcome.

This website is visited most during the first week of each month, but do check back as it is updated weekly with late breaking news.

73, Dr. Carol Milazzo, KP4MD

American Radio Relay League Sacramento Valley Section Manager

You can always send compliments, suggestions and submissions for inclusion in our Section News to kp4md(at)

SV Section Nets

Section Wide 2 Meter and HF Nets, Thursday, September 21 at 7:30 pm PDT

A Section-wide net is scheduled for Thursday, September 21. The net will commence after the Yuba-Sutter ARES net closes about 7:30 pm Pacific Time on the WD6AXM 146.085 MHz FM repeater, immediately followed by an HF net on 5330.5 kHz USB (alternate 3880 kHz LSB if no propagation). We will issue an Official Bulletin reminder prior to the net.

Don't have an HF radio?  
Listen on the W6DRZ web receiver at Half Moon Bay 
or the W7RNA web receiver in Sedona, AZ.

Hourly Northern California NVIS Observations 
Current NVIS Observations




Section News:
Section Nets:
Sacramento Valley ARES:

Thanks to Greg Kruckewitt KG6SJT for maintaining our Section ARES web page and assisting with our Facebook page and Twitter feed.
Thanks to Les Cobb W6TEE for maintaining the Section Net list.

ARRL Affiliated Club web resources are now listed on this web page


Ponderosa Fire Evacuations Sac Valley ARES and Red Cross Respond to Ponderosa Fire Evacuations
Submitted by ARRL SV SEC Greg Kruckewitt, KG6SJT, September 4, 2017

The Ponderosa fire near Chico started August 29, 2017 1:16 pm

Butte County ARES Emergency Coordinator Dale Anderson KK6EVX was contacted at 8:40 pm. that evening by Pam Deditch of the American Red Cross to respond to the Nazarene Church Shelter in Oroville for the evacuations from the fire.

Anderson began calling his group to find out who was available. He activated Kris Koenig KK0NIG, Daniel Shelsta N6APX, Robert Rentz KK6WUG and Dale KK6EVX to the Naz Shelter. He also contacted Section Emergency Coordinator Greg Kruckewitt KG6SJT.

Anderson noted: "The ARES members checked in with Pam and set up ecomms. Later on Ted Cochran N6TBC and Carl Franke KI6CIU joined us. We used the W6SCR repeater (149.290) as our main repeater and monitored the N6ICW for the Sacramento Red Cross link. During this time we set a Winlink station on packet radio 145.050 and made contacts with KG6SJT as fall back if we lost the internet link. We were working 12 hr. shifts. Our tactical call sign was Naz Shelter. We were finally released on 2 Sept at about 2000 hr.” The Naz shelter had between 30 to 40 clients at times.

Sacramento Valley ARES An additional evacuation center opened

On August 30, the Brownsville Evacuation Center was opened. Jim Piper N6MED, Amateur Radio Liaison to the Gold county Region of American Red Cross, was deployed by Red Cross to the Brownsville evacuation center as a shelter nurse. Before he left the Sacramento area, Piper was notified that cell communications were spotty so he took his radio go kit as well as his nurse kit.

When Piper arrived at the shelter, cell phone coverage was spotty and land line phones would not allow dialing out. Piper set up his radio and was able to communicate with the NAZ shelter and then via winlink. Packet radio was able to send email to his supervisors and receive reports on the fire.

Neighboring county ARES ECs were contacted by Kruckewitt to give those groups a heads up that mutual assistance might be needed to assist in Brownsville.

Jason Eaton KJ6HNP from Nevada ARES, Michael Joseph KK6ZGB from Sacramento ARES, and Michael Sangria AG6IP from Yuba Sutter ARES all indicated that they were on standby and available to go to the Brownsville evacuation center.

Sangria was scheduled to head to Brownsville that evening, but was contacted by Piper that there were no clients in the shelter so stand by until Thursday.

Red Cross indicated on Thursday that the shelter will probably shut down that evening. Sangria did go to the evacuation center and met with Piper who explained how winlink and Flmsg can be used to send information to the Red Cross even though cell phones and telecoms were not working. The shelter was closed later that evening.

Currently there are over 70 fires burning in California. All ARES members should have their go kits ready to support operations in their county or if mutual assistance in a neighboring county is needed. It is also a good idea to get up to speed on digital communication via radio. Packet and winlink are great tools for shelter communications.

Greg Kruckewitt, KG6SJT, ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Section Emergency Coordinator,

Amateur Radio Emergency ServiceSeptember 9 - Sacramento County ARES Training
Posted September 4, 2017

The next Sacramento County ARES training and meeting is scheduled for Saturday September 9, 2017 from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon at the Sacramento Sheriff's Central Division, 7000 65th Street, Sacramento, CA 95823.

Vince Cracchiolo KI6NHP is the Sacramento County EC.

For more information, visit the Sacramento County ARES web site Northern California DX Club Free Online Classes for General Class License and HF Operation Start Sept. 23
From the News, August 1, 2017

The Northern California DX Club (NCDXC) has announced an initiative aimed at getting more new Technician and General class radio amateurs active on HF. The NCDXC Elmering Project will launch on September 23.

NCDXC said its Elmering Project is aimed squarely at swelling the pool of new HF operators and getting them on HF. After some introductory classes are three curriculum tracks —General License Exam Preparation, HF Operating and Station Building, and Advanced Topics. Students sign up only for the classes that interest them; instruction will be at the participant’s skill level. The club said classes will cover such topics as advanced HF phone, CW, and digital mode operating skills, propagation analysis, and antennas. Some classes will be taught using Power Point presentations delivered to a student’s computer via WebEx.

Read the full story here.  Program Flyer

Go to for details and registration.

ARRL Exhibit and Special Event Station at October 14 Rocklin Mini Maker Faire
Posted August 8, 2017

  Rocklin Mini Maker Faire Attention Area Radio Amateurs and Groups:

The ARRL Sacramento Valley Section will sponsor an exhibit promoting Amateur Radio and our local clubs at the Mini Maker Faire at Sierra College in Rocklin on Saturday October 14 from 9 am - 4 pm. We plan a display of homebrew amateur radio equipment and antenna projects, Morse Code practice stations, and offering opportunities for attendees to learn about the many facets of the amateur radio and to communicate on the air with amateur radio operators via an operational on-site amateur radio Special Event Station N6M. We will offer literature and information on licensing, local clubs, the ARRL and amateur radio's role in community service and promoting careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.

  For more information or to help plan or participate in this public outreach, please e-mail kp4md(at)

Club and Member News - September 2017

Mount Shasta ARC Update from Mount Shasta ARC
Posted September 2, 2017

As in years past, it has been a busy summer in Siskiyou County and September is gearing up to be the busiest month of all. Over the next few weeks, MSARC will be providing volunteer public event staffing for the Tinman Triathlon (Sept. 3), Biketoberfest (Sept. 23), and the Headwaters Time Trials (Sept. 30). If you want to join us in the beautiful country surrounding Mt. Shasta and Castle Crags State Park, contact the club via the website ( and we'd be more than happy to meet you!

The club opened the clubhouse and brought the station on the air for the eclipse on August 21. Unfortunately, the bands were not in our favor and we made only two contacts via CW, but in so doing, we have awarded one of the members a new nickname. If you see Larry Marks (W6VTJ), you can call him "The Brass Fist."

Every Wednesday at 1900 PDT, we host an informal net to test radios and share club information. The net is on the W6YOP Grey Butte machine at 441.275 and we'd love for others to join in. It's ham radio, so the more, the merrier.

With a renewed vision of the future, MSARC will be looking to take some exciting steps over the next several months and years, keep your eyes open and join us when you can.

Submitted by Mark Dibelka, AB2LI

Update from Amador County ARC - pending
Posted July 30, 2017

The Amador County Amateur Radio Club has had a busy month. We started out with a joint B-B-Q with the Mother Lode Rockcrawlers. Both clubs use amateur radio and took advantage of that mutual interest to get together and improve our knowledge of each clubs activities and enjoy some fine food and fellowship. Our relationship with Red Cross was further enhances when a representative from Red Cross spoke at our July monthly club meeting. Later in the month we concluded a licensing course and every student was successful in passing the test for their Technician license. Our new repeater controller is in full operation and we had a special class to learn about its capabilities. 73, John Stettler, PIO

El Dorado County ARC Update from El Dorado County ARC
Posted September 4, 2017


We had a nice turnout for our July meeting. It was good to see many new faces, as well as some I haven’t seen in quite a while!

At home, I have put a Raspberry Pi 3 to use as a headless monitor of WSPR (Weak Signal Propagation Reporter). Currently it monitors 20 meters, but will move to other bands as time permits. My own WSPR transmitter is almost completely installed. Just a matter of making some final connections before putting it on the air. If you’d like to join in the fun, there are a few of us in the club that can help you get started. A good resource is

As a reminder, if any member has a project they would like to share at a club meeting, please let me, or any other officer know. We will be happy to set aside some time for you to give a short presentation.

Please support the club raffle. The more participants, the better the prizes!

Hope to see you at the meeting!

73, Michael, K6MLE Newsletter

River City ARCS   Update from River City ARCS
Posted September 4, 2017

September 5 Meeting Program - Home Brew Night

I've been with the River City Amateur Radio Club Society since 2004. This September's General Meeting will be the first meeting that I've attended where club members will have the opportunity to present a "home brew" item to the rest of the club. I hope the presenters can give a short comments as to "where they received the motivation to build their "home brew" device?" Maybe an article in QST or other electronic journal?

In the July 2017 issue of QST, Mike Aiello, N2HTT, published an article call "An Arduino- Controlled Digital VFO for Vintage Tube Transmitters". I've been a ham since the early 1960s and I have some favorite tube equipment from those days that. Although they were stable for the technology at the time (a little drift), they no longer meets the "rock steady" equipment of today.

Mike's article describes how he dealt with the developing a project by "breadboarding" everything on small piece of wood so if he must move it, everything stays together. He makes no bones that it takes months to get things done, unlike a kit where everything is all together - just add "assembly" and hope you don't wire something incorrectly. This technique I've seen before but it was the way Mike wrote his article that made an impression on me. I've collected most of the parts for the VFO, just an encoder is still missing. I hope to start on it soon after after I finish assembling a K2 that I bought many years ago - maybe this is more than just a boost.

I hope you find September's meeting inspiring and get the "home brew bug". See you next week at the meeting.

73, Ed, WA6QYO  Newsletter

Yuba Sutter ARC Update from Yuba-Sutter ARC
Posted September 4, 2017


Is it that time already??? Time seems to be really flying by. It’s hard for me to believe that Field Day was not that long ago. I think you’ve probably heard quite a bit from those who participated what a fun time we had and how well it went off. I’m SO glad for all the hard work put in by those involved in the planning. Now that we’re “back in the groove” hopefully next year’s Field Day will be even bigger and better! I’m looking forward to it. I hope you all are also. It would be really fun to have twice as many operators as we did this year.

I’m also very pleased with our recent Antenna Day. Hosted by Curtis (KF6VFP) and Marsha (KI6CSN) it was another enjoyable event for those who attended. We had numerous members get their first experience with building simple antennas and learn new skills that they can now use to experiment further. I’ve already heard back from some of the attendees on additional antenna projects that they want to pursue. It’s satisfying to see the enthusiasm generated by this experience.

Who’s up for a fox hunt? Who knows what a fox hunt is? As part of the antenna day activities some tape measure Yagi antennas were constructed by a few of the attendees. They are commonly used for foxhunting, tracking down a radio transmitter through direction finding techniques, and are relatively quick and easy to make. At the last meeting we introduced the idea of having a foxhunt and the response was very positive so we’ve planned to hold one the morning of October 21st to be followed by some sort of social/eating activity. For those that need an antenna a couple of club members will be putting together kits of needed parts that only need to be assembled. Bob McClard has already agreed to host an antenna-assembling get-together in the latter part of September on his (covered) back porch.

I’m very pleased to see the progress that Gary Mason (KE6VUR) is making with putting together the Sutter High School Amateur Radio Club. At the recent Sutter High Club Day seven more students signed up to participate. Kudos to the YSARC club members who are stepping up and donating equipment and manuals to give the club a kickstart. Gary, Joe (N9BD), Mark (KA6FFM) and myself met recently to discuss what Gary thought we could contribute as a partner with the SHSARC to assist them in their endeavors. Gary is very appreciative of what the club has already done on their behalf, donating equipment and study material and showing enthusiasm for his project. His primary request of the club and its members will be the sharing of club member expertise with his students. Occasional club member presentations to the club would be greatly appreciated as well as our willingness to welcome his group into our activities whenever possible. A Technician class held at their club meetings at the high school is planned to move the students along in acquiring their licenses. Gary is a certified instructor but might need some assistance so if you’re willing to help please let him know. Along those lines if you think you might be willing to do a presentation at one of the club meetings again contact Gary.

There are many other activities coming up in the near future. The Western Placer Amateur Radio Club will be hosting their annual HamFest in Lincoln on the 16th of September. This is one of the bigger ham swaps in the area and would be worth attending. A great opportunity to pick up some of the ham gear you need or want and hopefully score an unbelievable deal. The California QSO Party contest will be held the first full weekend in October. After Field Day this is probably one of the bigger contests for California hams. With Gary’s group coming up to speed if you plan on working this contest consider inviting a student to participate along with you. It would be a great opportunity to stoke their enthusiasm. November will bring us the Veteran’s Day Parade in Marysville and our handling of the communications. Volunteers are always appreciated. December is not too far away and the subsequent club Christmas party. This will also need a coordinator so I am mentioning it now in the hopes it will prompt a volunteer sooner rather than later.

Finally, a reminder to all that Steve Sweetman (K6TAZ), our Yuba Sutter ARES coordinator will be shortly bound for South Carolina for retirement. First of all, we want to thank Steve for his service to the community in filling this position. His dedication to his post has ensured that ham radio is ready to respond should the need arise. Anyone interested in assuming his position should contact him or Carol Milazzo, our ARRL Section Manager.

Till next time, 73s. Chris (KK6VZD)


✓YSARC’s new web page is: - click on the upper right-hand icon on the homepage to join the club’s Facebook pagePast issue’s of the VHN are available on our new website.

✓Send your ham related articles and pictures to share in your VHN. Pictures of ham shacks, antenna projects, antenna parties, etc. are appreciated


Sierra Foothills ARC Technical Presentation

Sierra Foothills ARC Update from Sierra Foothills ARC
Posted September 4, 2017


The SFARC General meeting for August commenced at 1930 hours at the Auburn City Hall Rose Room, Vice President Mike-KK6GLP presiding. President Orion-AI6JP, Treasurer Sharon-KK6RGV and Director Bob-K6UDA were absent. Mike led approximately 29 members and guests in a Pledge of Allegiance to the flag. An introduction of Officers, members and guests followed.


Vice President’s Report: Mike-KK6GLP briefly discussed the agenda and reviewed this evening’s activities.

Secretary’s Report: Bruce-K6BAA requested input for the club newsletter; advised a welcome letter was available for new members and guests, and a reminder to the membership to sign the attendance sheet.

VE’s Report: Al-NI2U reported there were 19 candidates resulting in 12 Technicians, 5 General and 1 Extra.

Satellite Report: Greg-KO6TH briefed members on ISS packet activities. Bob-WE6C asked Greg to post Yahoo alerts for ISS passes over Norther California.

Refreshments/Drawing: Wendy-KK6HSK and her daughters provided tonight’s refreshments using the proceeds for a fundraiser. Aaron-KG6TVT reviewed items planned for the drawing

Club Picnic: Jeremiah-W6DLO updated members on his preparations for August 19th’s picnic to be held again at Applegate Park.

Brian-AI6US gave a presentation of the unofficial club camp out to be held at Stumpy Meadows Reservoir September 22-24 and encouraged members to make their reservations for RV/Tent spaces.

Presentation: Carl-WF6J and his assistants conducted a well received and fun antenna work shop for participating club members.

General Announcements: The Club Net meets every Thursday at 7:30pm; Board and General Meetings occur on the 2nd Friday, Board meeting is held at Sizzler Restaurant in Auburn, and General meetings at 7:30pm at Auburn City Hall. The Club breakfast is held on the last Saturday at Mel’s Diner in Auburn; an Elmer Net is held the first and third Wednesday night at 7:30pm on the 2m repeater. See for more information.

The meeting adjourned at 2130. Submitted by Bruce-K6BAA, Club Secretary

September 2 VE Session Report

We had a very successful session again. We administered 21 elements to 14 candidates. 12 earned a new or upgraded license. We have 7 new Technicians 3 new Generals And 2 new Extras

We had 10 examiners and a welcome back to Gary Smith after his motor cycle accident.

Thanks, Al NI2U

Elk Grove-Florin ARC Update from Elk Grove-Florin ARC - pending
Posted August 16, 2017

Elk Grove-Florin ARC-August meeting

Our August meeting was a little different than most. We called it “Install O’Rama”. We invited the clubs and hams in the area to join us for this parking lot event. Hams with mobile installations were invited to display them and hams looking for ideas were encouraged to come and see what others had done. While the attendance was a little lower than we had hoped, we still had some great installations to show.

Fred W7KOZ and Bonnie KC6PSZ brought their Communications Trailer in from Wilton. This is truly a labor of love. They built it up from Scratch. Fred for many years was a member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary and used it in many of its events. As you can see from the picture it contains work space for two operators and several radios.

Fred Sellstrom W7KOZs trailer.  Photo by Craig Bruce WP2N Van owned by Brian Courtright K9LBC.  Photo by Craig Bruce WP2N

Brian K9LBC brought his van. He is new to ham radio and has done a magnificent job of building a mobile radio/camping vehicle. It is powered by a 12-volt deep cell battery that is charged by a 100 watt solar array. He can fish, hunt and play radio in the same vehicle. Brian lives in Antelope and is a member of the North Hills ARC. We appreciate.

We had a visitor that is not a licensed yet, but wants to be. So, we had a chance to promote Amateur Radio a bit. It was a good night!

73, Paul (N6DRY)

Photo credits: 1. Fred Sellstrom W7KOZ's trailer.  Photo by Craig Bruce WP2N  2. Van owned by Brian Courtright, K9LBC.  Photo by Craig Bruce WP2N

Oroville ARS   Steak Bake Update from Oroville ARS
Posted September 4, 2017

The monthly meeting of OARS ( will take place this Friday, 8 September 2017, 7 pm, at St. Paul’s Parish Hall, 1430 Pine Street in Oroville. The doors will open at 6 pm for a social hour prior to the meeting. The program, to be presented by Gerry Vrooman, N6GCV, will be about Raspberry Pi and some of its practical uses in Amateur Radio.

OARS is hosting this year’s Steak Bake, to take place on Saturday, 23 September 2017, 1 to 5 pm, at Hammon Park (southeast of The Home Depot in Thermalito). Flyer images are attached to this message, with the meat item prices set. Ron Osborne, KD7UHF, would greatly appreciate responses from those planning to attend, either by phone, email or the RSVP sheet at this Friday’s meeting.

Hope all can attend both events. 73, Jim

QCWA Update from SOTARS/QCWA Chapter 169 - pending
Posted August 6, 2017

Our meeting this month is Wednesday, September 13th. You can choose Lunch or Breakfast. (Denny's serves breakfast all day.)  Breakfast (or lunch) starts at eleven and the meeting will start at Noon.

The program is the first half of TXFactor, Episode 17, that includes a section on operating the various digital modes and a short clip on QSL'ing via the bureau. Next month's show will be the conclusion of Episode l7 about Field Day in the UK.

Meeting as usual at: Denny's Restaurant, 7900 College Town Drive, Sacramento. Phone (916) 383-7071, Located at the southwest corner of Howe Ave. and College Town Drive one block North of Highway 50.

Please plan on attending.

What Is Amateur Radio Night - September 19

North Hills RC Update from North Hills RC
Posted September 4, 2017

The next event for The North Hills Radio Club will take place on Tuesday evening, September 19, 2017.

The North Hills Radio Club will once again be holding our annual event called What Is Amateur Radio Night.

This year, it will take place on Tuesday evening, September 19 from 6:00 until 8:00 P.M. At What Is Amateur Radio Night (WIARN) we try to showcase as many aspects of the amateur radio service as we can. From the early days of tube-type and military gear to today's modern radios and cutting-edge digital modes and just about everything in-between! WE invite all NHRC members as well as hams from other clubs to come and display your favorite part of the hobby. In the past we have had persons from ARES/RACES, CERT, Skywarn and even the CHP.

We would like for you to come and look at all of the various displays or, bring something to display your own self! If you're from another club, how about bringing some literature about your club as well as applications for perspective future members. Nothing wrong with trying to get more members into your club.

WIARN well be held at the former SMUD building located at 5026 Don Julio Blvd. at the northeast corner of Don Julio and Elkhorn Blvds in Sacramento.

One more thing… How about bringing a non-ham friend to our event? We would especially like to see young people from the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts or Brownies. Be sure to know that everyone, young or old is welcome to attend. Don't be afraid to bring that non-ham friend to the show.

There have been several instances where persons have come to WIARN and have gone on to get their ticket. If you have any questions or would like to come, you can contact Doug, N6NFF on the club's K6IS repeater on the frequency of 145.190Mhz with a minus offset and a CTCSS tone of 162.2 Hz. You can also send an e-mail

The North Hills Radio Club looks forward to seeing all of you at What Is Amateur Radio Night (WIARN). Until then, the very best of 73. From Doug Emerson, Vice-President, North Hills Radio Club. Amateur call sign, N6NFF

Nevada County ARC Update from Nevada County ARC - pending
Posted August 11, 2017

Next Meeting: Monday August 14, 2017 doors open 6:30pm, meeting at 7pm. PIZZA! COME HUNGRY TO THE MEETING. The August Meeting is Member Appreciation Night. Pizza Will Be Provided.

As a special thank you to the members who have volunteered at the Nevada County Fair, and all the members of the club who all do so much to make this club what it is, the August meeting will be Member Appreciation Night. We will also hear reports from the fair and from Ben Soper N3BEN on traveling and operating in Europe and the hazards of chasing fish with a GoPro!

Nevada County Fair Aug 9-13

By the time you receive this newsletter, the Nevada County Fair is already underway! Come to the fair this weekend to visit us at our booth, and perhaps even take the opportunity to stand behind it for a while and give someone there a break (if you're not already scheduled to be there.)

Bring a friend to show them you're not the only crazy person in the county who does this stuff, and possibly to infect them with "the Bug" through contact with multiple carriers!

Solar Eclipse Monday August 21

Grass Valley will experience an 85% Partial Solar Eclipse on Monday the 21st. It's worth noting that an 85% partial eclipse is not 85% of the experience of a TOTAL solar eclipse, the two events are not even comparable. However, if you're unfortunate enough to not be able to travel to the path of totality for this eclipse, you get a minor little show similar to our annular eclipse in 2012, where the sun is not fully covered.

Grass Valley Eclipse Timing Eclipse begins: 9:03 am Eclipse Maximum: 10:17 am Eclipse ends: 11:40 am

If you can at all, travel to the path of totality. The times for the eclipse in other locations will vary as the Moon's complete shadow sweeps across the U.S., so make sure you look up the times for where you are going to not miss the eclipse.

When in partial eclipse, solar filter glasses will be necessary to view the eclipse. You will need this protection for the entire eclipse from Grass Valley and anywhere outside the path of totality.


No minutes submitted for the last meeting.

73, Walt, N6HNS        Newsletter

W6SFM Tuesday Night CW Net

Samuel F. Morse ARC Update from Samuel F Morse ARC
Posted September 2, 2017


The W6SFM CW BEGINNERS CLASS WILL BE HELD STARTING WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 13th. The club has locked a date for the beginning of our next semi annual CW Beginners Course. The course is a once per week 2 hour class that meets for 10 consecutive weeks. At this course students will learn how to both send and receive Morse Code. Students will be supplied a straight key and Oscillator to keep at the completion of the course. Students will also learn proper on-air pro-signs and other interesting information about Morse Code and On-air practices. If you or someone you know is interested in joining this course please be sure to contact the club ASAP. This is a FIRST COME FIRST SERVE enrollment with VERY limited seating. Those who contact the club via email are eligible to be placed on a 7 day 'seat reservation' while we await your payment. For more information be sure to contact us by going to

The W6SFM Samuel F Morse Radio Club August meeting was called to order by club President Mike, N6MQL on August 3rd at the Carmichael Presbyterian Church in Carmichael CA, with 10 members and 4 guest in attendance.

This month comes with some new updates to the W6SFM.COM website again. For those who have been returning to the page from time to time you may have noticed that slowly there have been many small changes and improvements. This month Mike, N6MQL has rolled out the new “Videos” page. This page is located under the “Media Clips & Pics” menu bar at the top of every page. On the new Videos page, you will find 3 different category views and video libraries. “Club Activities” videos."On-Air Net Meetings" library and our “Monthly In-Person Meetings”. Each month a new club meeting video will be posted for those who were unable to attend the meeting in person, or watch it live on the first Thursday of each month at 7PM. Simply select the video you’re interested to watch from one of the 3 categories to view it. The club recommends that you click the “Subscribe to the W6SFM” button so that you will be informed both when the club is broadcasting LIVE and when we post a new video to the archives. Both YouTube W6SFM do NOT spam your email for any reason, and accounts are FREE to login. You can even use your existing Google account to login!

Discussed at our last meting was the Amateur Radio Parity Act, H.R.555/S.1534 was discussed. Members were notified by email with a hyperlink app to "RALLY CONGRESS" to generate a letter to both US Senators urging them to vote for this bill.

Also mentioned was the Solar Eclipse QSO Party (SEQP) during the solar eclipse September 21, along with other news and events.

For the second half of the meeting, Carol, Kp4Md gave a presentation on WSPR (Weak Signal Propagation Reporter" system.

There was no "Show and Tell" this month.

Our next SFM ARC in-person meeting will be held at its normal time and location September 7th (followed by our OCT 5th meeting). The SFM ARC in-person meeting will be held in the Howard Crowley room upstairs at the Carmichael Presbyterian Church. Directions, including a Google Map are available on the home page.

At our September meeting, we will be discussing ARRL news and events. We will also have a presentation on the use and understanding of the Solar Indices report.

As always, we will have our Tech (show and tell) portion. Members and visitors are asked to share their Ham Radio related items they find of interest. Attend our In-Person meetings with items that you’ve purchased or were given to you that you would like to share with others in the group. Visitors are always welcome to join us at our meetings.

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 13-15 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. On-line members can also make use of the “Chat” window to speak with each other, or the NCS (if available)

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!

-- Chris AI6U (SFMARC Secretary)


Samuel F Morse ARC Field Day Photos

WPARC HamFest September 16

Western Placer ARC Update from Western Placer ARC
Posted September 2, 2017

Greetings from the Western Placer Amateur Radio Club:

The WPARC Hamfest on Saturday September 16th! Only 17 days away! We have an exciting 1st prize for the drawing – a Rig Expert AA-170 HF/VHF Antenna Analyzer/VNA with a retail value of $395! If you are a ham you need this device. It is a fully contained analyzer that displays graphs of your antenna systems performance. In addition, you can save readings and graphs to your device and display them on your PC using a USB cable. I have used one of these and it does in seconds what takes hours with non-graphing analyzers. Plus, it is much more accurate. It works on all types of antennas – vertical, wire, what ever you need to tune. Plus, this version includes 2 meters! More prizes will be announced soon. Tickets are $1.00 for one, $5 for six, or $10 for 15 (definitely the best deal). Please see the flyer attached to this newsletter for more info.

We haven't increased the cost for vendors since the first Hamfest 11 years ago. It is still just $10 per parking spot and I think that is helping to drive the growth of the event. We will have coffee, donuts, and water available at the club booth. Last year we had the largest turnout ever with several hundred people and we expect this year to be even larger. If you are looking to buy that special piece of gear or sell something you no longer need the WPARC Hamfest is where it happens.

The gates open at 7:00 AM but we need several volunteers to be there around 5:00 AM to set up and to control parking for buyers and sellers. Gates open at 6:00 AM for vendors.

We will have VE sessions at an off site location. If you are interested in taking a test please email Dennis KI6HHA at Also, we will use the club repeater, K6PAC, for the talk in frequency. It is 147.300 (+) 179.9.

The WPARC September meeting is Tuesday night, the 19th. It starts at 7:00 PM and the Board meeting is at 5:45 PM. All members are welcome to attend the Board meeting. Come early for lots of food, drink, and conversation. Remember we have changed locations. We will now meet at the Roseville Round Table Pizza at 1020 Pleasant Grove Blvd.

We are now offering VE testing on the 1st Tuesday of the month. Chuck KK6DOA will be managing the program. The location will be at the south gate Visitors Center in Sun City Lincoln Hills. For more informal email Chuck

System Fusion Net time change! We will still meet on Monday nights but we are moving the time to 7:30 PM, an hour earlier. The System Fusion net starts in analog so people can ask questions about C4FM and obtain help before we switch to digital. This net, and System Fusion, are growing fast with many people from throughout the Sacramento valley joining in. Gary KT6SKR is the net control and is doing a superb job. Check it out. (Gary has an ICOM ID-51a Plus D-Star HT for sale. Please see info at the end of the newsletter.)

An exciting new net is the 2 meter simplex net on Wednesday nights. We are testing our systems to see what we can do without a repeater. It is on 146.550 at 7:30 PM. The net is informal and we don’t have a fixed NC but LC often takes the lead.

We also have analog FM nets on Wednesday morning at 10:00 AM and Thursday at 7:30 PM. The morning net is always hosted by Katy KJ6YCP and the 2 nets on Thursday evenings start at 7:30 PM. Bill, KJ6YCO, is the net coordinator now and often hosts the 2 meter net. When he isn't on, the trusty Dennis, KI6HHA, is on, and handles the net with his usual style and skills. They all do a fine job and it is a pleasure to hear them lead the nets. Many thanks to all of them for dedicating time to the club nets to make them a success. If you would like to be a Net Control for one of our nets, please contact Bill at

Five minutes following the Thursday 2 meter net we have an HF net. LC, N7VQC, is on the spot to handle the HF net. LC is also an excellent Net Control and it is always a pleasure to hear him on the bands. We have had many visitors join from the western States recently and this has been a lot of fun. We are all working to improve our transmitted signal and audio using oscilloscopes and voice meters. We can record your audio and play it back to you which is a big help for adjusting your equipment. Lots of experimenting and lots of fun is the idea for this net. The net changes bands every week so listen to the 2 meter net for any change in frequency (also check the club website, If the band is busy we usually go up 5 until we find a clear spot. The schedule starts from the first Thursday of the month on 10 meters, then 15, then 40, and finally 75 meters at the end of the month. If there are 5 Thursdays in a month, the last one will be on 10 meters.

The club website,, has a new look and new information. Jey KQ6DK is now club web master and is updating the the site on a regular basis. Thanks to Jey for all his work on the website.

Don’t forget about our WPARC Facebook page. It is at:

Want more? We now have a Twitter account! Just search for @k6pac (the club repeater call sign with the “@” symbol). We are following the ARRL, the ARRL Sacramento Valley Section, Kenwood, and Yaseu and a few others. If you think of someone we should follow, please email me. I know there are a few local clubs with Twitter accounts and I will add them.

We have a new repeater ordered! Our current repeater is a Yaesu DR-1X which provides analog and digital operations. Yaesu is offering a terrific upgrade deal for the new DR-2X for only $300 and we are going to take advantage of it. The repeater is on its way from Japan and should be here within the next month. It is more robust than the DR-1X and has many new features that we will discuss in future newsletters and meetings. There is a firmware update coming for all System Fusion radios to take full advantage of the new features of the repeater and we will have a workshop for anyone who needs help with the upgrade. Yaesu has just released a new HT, the FT-70, that is designed to take full advantage of the new features at about $200. The new HT is fully System Fusion capable and looks like it will be a good performer.

When we install the new repeater we are considering lowering the PL tone to 67 Hz. The current PL tone, 179.9 Hz, comes through in the audible range on many radios. The PL tone is supposed to be sub-audible but 179.9 is just a little too high and causes a hum when transmitting that can be heard on many radios, especially those with wider audio bandwidth. We will give everyone full information as we progress through the replacement of the repeater.

73, Michael Buck. K6BUK  HamFest Flyer

WPARC on Facebook and Twitter

Check us out on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter (@k6pac)

Glenn ARS   Update from Glenn ARS - pending
Posted August 8, 2017

Prez Says!

July is now distant and we have moved into another hot summer month. This continuous heat wave has been wracking havoc on everyone activities, slowing us down I hope, in order to stay as cool and healthy as possible.

On the club front we are not doing much this summer but it is hoped that in the weeks remaining in this year, if we all work together, that we can put together some interesting programs to attract new members and bring back some past ones.

Your ideas and suggestions are most welcome and I would like to hear them presented at the next GARS membership meeting on 10 August 2017, at the Lutheran Fellowship Hall in Artois, CA. Time to meet is 6:30 pm (1830 hours) local time. Hope to see you all there and if you can see your way bring someone to introduce them to Amateur Radio.

Work on the Disaster Response Trailer (DTR) is moving very slowly but the repairs to the 4 foot man door on the side of the trailer are almost complete. There is some sealing work to be done to complete this work list item. It would be complete but the high heat and humidity and the sealant do not mix so we are waiting for cooler climes to finish. Work on the battery boxes will commence this month along with programming the Anytone radios.

There is still much work to do! We will have a short discussion during the membership meeting on what needs to be accomplished to ready the DRT for deployment.

See you all at the GARS membership meeting and have a safe and blessed month!

Mike Ellithorpe-kf6obi President, GARS 530-518-3730  Newsletter

Golden Empire ARS Durham Ham Swap Update from Golden Empire ARS
Posted September 4, 2017

The Prez' Says QST de KA6GND

I sure hope that all of you are safe from the fires burning in our area and staying safe from this heat and smoke. How did you like the solar eclipse? Did you operate on HF during that time and have anything to report?

Ham radio received some good exposure on PBS's Nova program when our member Kris Koenig KK0NIG helped on the production and got us in there - thanks Kris!

The Steak Bake is this month, hosted this year by OARS in Oroville on the 23rd of September. See inside this newsletter for more information.

On Saturday September 30th, will be the 2nd annual Ham Swap-meet at Durham Park, hosted by Harry W6HAS. It will be from 8 a.m. until noon. This is a great way to meet some voices from the air in person, take home some valuable goodies or unload them!

I learned a valuable lesson recently. I had been having trouble with an old HyGain TH3JR Tri-band HF beam that I put up last year. This past month with some help we discovered that although I mounted it with all drain holes in the traps pointing down for proper drainage, at some point in it's life it must have been stored on the ground with some drain holes not facing downward, and the traps were full of corrosion, dirt and bugs causing nothing but problems. That is something that many of us may not think about when storing an antenna outside when not using it.

May the bands be kind to you and remember, the sky is the limit with amateur radio, the contacts are out there.

73 for now, Larry Marcum, KA6GND, GEARS Club President,, 530-345-5399  Newsletter

PSK31 during SEQP Solar Eclipse Report from Paul AI6IN
Posted September 2, 2017

Had a lot of fun operating digital in the Solar Eclipse QSO Party on 20 meters.<
Sent in my log sheet; not many contacts from my minimal setup, but data is data; it all helps.

This PSKReporter screenshot was cool; especially seeing E51WL receiving my signal (25W to a vertical mounted at 8m)!

VY 73,
Paul AI6IN

KE8FT Loop Antenna Solar Eclipse Report from Giuseppe Molinaro KE8FT
Posted September 4, 2017

During the Solar Eclipse QSO Party I started on 40 m then moved on 80m , 40m , 30m , 17m and finished on 20 m. I am using a linear loaded slanted delta loop (cut for 160m) with apex at 40 feet and lower sides attached to the top of the 6 feet fence (see picture below) fed through a 4 to 1 balun/MFJ-998RT remote tuner.

I also observed quite a few interesting SNR changes on all the various bands, in particular regarding 80 & 40 m what follows:

Timestamp Call MHz SNR Drift Grid Pwr Reporter RGrid km az
2017-08-21 16:50 KE8FT 3.574099 -12 0 CM98dn 5 KG7GDB CN84ku 709 351
2017-08-21 17:02 KE8FT 3.574099 -6 0 CM98dn 5 KG7GDB CN84ku 709 351

Timestamp Call MHz SNR Drift Grid Pwr Reporter RGrid Km az
2017-08-21 16:10 KG7GDB 3.574111 -22 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 16:14 KG7GDB 3.574111 -26 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 16:18 KG7GDB 3.574111 -20 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 16:20 KG7GDB 3.574111 -21 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 16:24 KG7GDB 3.574111 -25 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 16:38 KG7GDB 3.574111 -24 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 16:44 KG7GDB 3.574111 -19 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 16:48 KG7GDB 3.574111 -13 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 16:52 KG7GDB 3.574111 -15 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170
2017-08-21 17:00 KG7GDB 3.574111 -15 0 CN84ku 5 KE8FT CM98dn 709 170

Timestamp Call MHz SNR Drift Grid Pwr Reporter RGrid km az
2017-08-21 14:50 KE8FT 7.040095 -25 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 15:00 KE8FT 7.040095 -26 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 15:20 KE8FT 7.040095 -23 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 15:44 KE8FT 7.040095 -27 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 17:08 KE8FT 7.040095 -18 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 17:18 KE8FT 7.040095 -8 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 17:26 KE8FT 7.040095 -10 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 17:34 KE8FT 7.040096 -9 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 17:42 KE8FT 7.040096 -14 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19
2017-08-21 17:48 KE8FT 7.040096 -22 0 CM98dn 5 VE6OG DO33 1785 19

Solar Eclipse Report from Carol Milazzo KP4MD
Posted September 4, 2017

I operated WSPR mode during the Solar Eclipse QSO Party with 5 watts on 80 and 40 meters using a FlexRadio 1500 Software Defined Radio and a 40 meter horizontal full wave "Loop SkyWire" antenna (a square loop of wire 35 feet on each side) at 20 feet height above ground.

Significant unusual daytime enhancement of long distance propagation on 40 meters occurred as the eclipse shadow progressed eastward towards the Midwest and eastern United States.

Total 40 meter WSPR activity during Solar Eclipse KP4MD WSPR Spotted Stations during Solar Eclipse 40m WSPR Spot Signal to Noise Ratio vs. Time 40m WSPR Spot Distance vs. Time

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