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


Submit Updates Now for the May Section News


Visit our Section website at for the latest updates.

NPOTA 2016

From the Section Manager

Here is the latest news from our section clubs and members. You can still send items for the April news to kp4md(at) I try to update this news page by each the weekend after submissions are received.

Mark Sunday, May 15 on your calendars now for the North Hills Radio Club Hamfest from 7 AM to 12 noon at a new location--the Carmichael Elks Lodge, 5631 Cypress Ave, Carmichael, CA 95608.  See more info at

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

73, Carol Milazzo KP4MD
ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Manager

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



Section News:
Section Nets:
Sacramento Valley ARES:

Thanks to Greg Kruckewitt KG6SJT for maintaining our Section ARES web page and assisting with our new 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


ARRL Conventions and Hamfests




Classes and Volunteer Exam (VE) Schedules

New Class and VE Session Calendar


Sacramento Amateur Radio Licensing Classes
Posted January 9, 2016

The Sacramento Sheriff's Amateur Radio Program will offer the following at the Sacramento Sheriff's Central Division, 7000 65th Street, Sacramento, CA 95823.

Class duration is from 6-9 pm.  
For further information email


Morse Code Beginners' Class
Posted February 27, 2016

Due to the overwhelming popularity of the W6SFM CW Beginners class the SFM ARC is gearing up to start another CW Beginners class starting April 13th 2016. Students in our class will all complete with a good grasp on their entire alphabet, numbers and CW Pro-signs. Students are taught proper Sending and Receiving methods. Students will be provided with a Morse Code Straight Key and an Oscillator to keep and use on-air with their home stations.
The SFM ARC CW (Morse Code) class is a 10 week course held once per week for 2 hours. Our goal is to have all students on the air operating conversational speed CW by week 6.
If you or someone you know is interested in attending our next CW course please email the club at for more information. We hope to see you there!


Folsom ARRL Volunteer Exam Schedule
Posted December 22, 2015

Here is our updated exam scheduled for the first part of 2016:

  1. Thursday January 21
  2. Thursday February 18
  3. Thursday March 17
  4. Thursday April 21
  5. Thursday May 19
  6. Thursday June 16

All exams start at 6:00 pm.

Round Table Pizza (Small private room by the front door), 2793 E Bidwell St, Suite 100, Folsom, CA 95630
For information see or contact Mike Kirkland, NS6Q at
73, Mike, NS6Q


Redding ARRL VE Schedule
Posted March 1, 2016

The Redding ARRL VE Team will be hosting exams on the following Saturdays in 2016:

  1. March 19
  2. May 21
  3. July 16
  4. September 7
  5. November 19

Our exam sessions are now being held at 2486 Progress Drive in Redding. Exams start at 10:00 AM and candidates are encouraged to pre-register.

More information can be found or by contacting Steve K6KS at



Test location: SHINGLETOWN AREA RESOURCE CENTER, 31268 HWY 44 SUITE C, SHINGLETOWN, CA. 96088 Next door to the Post Office.
Testing begins at 10:00 AM. Candidates should arrive 15 to 30 minutes early. We accept walk ins.
Contact: Dar Walker W6IO, Shingletown ARRL VE Liaison,, 530-474-3087

2016 SCHEDULE: Feb 20, Apr 16, Jun 18, Aug 20, Oct 15, Dec 17

Dar Walker W6IO


National Parks on the Air commences January 1, 2016

National Parks on the Air

In 2016, the National Parks Service (NPS) will celebrate its 100th anniversary, and radio amateurs will be able to help mark the occasion with the ARRL National Parks on the Air (NPOTA) event. The fun begins at 0000 UTC on January 1, 2016.
NPS entities within the Sacramento Valley Section are:

*Although some sites such as Sutter's Fort and the B.F. Hastings Building are under California State Parks administration, NPOTA activations may be conducted there with appropriate permission.  "Operations within 100 feet of National Historic Trails are permitted at any point along the route. Operations from private property must receive permission."  See NPOTA Rules 13(k) and (m).

ARRL headquarters advises amateur radio operators to contact and register with the corresponding local NPS unit administration in advance to inform them of planned NPOTA operations within their entity. Visit for more information.  Follow NPOTA activation updates on npota.arrl.orgFacebook and Twitter.


From Duane Wyatt, WAØMJD, Section Youth Coordinator
Posted March 28, 2016

April 27 - World Morse Code Day

Duane WAØMJD would like to put on a two hour special event portable operation at a park or other facility on the afternoon of April 27.  That day is World Morse Code Day, celebrating Samuel F. Morse's birthday.  Duane asks that any amateur operators interested in assisting please contact him at duanewyatt(at) or (916) 677-9799, 


Duane Wyatt, WAØMJD,
ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Youth Coordinator
(916) 677-9799

April 3 - Pony Express Anniversary NPOTA/Special Event Station N6P Report

Amateur radio operators from the River City Amateur Radio Communications Society and the Samuel F. Morse Amateur Radio Club activated the National Parks on the Air/Special Event Station N6P at the Pony Express Terminal (National Historic Trail TR15), 1002 2nd Street in Old Sacramento on Sunday April 3 from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm PDT (1700-2200 UTC) to commemorate the 156th anniversary of the inauguration of the Pony Express on that date. CW and phone operation on 40 and 20 meters showcased the historic and current day role of Morse Code and the Amateur Radio Service.

The event included an ARRL Amateur Radio Literature display and a Morse Code Practice Station with a variety of telegraph keys, including a straight hand key, a bug and an electronic keyer. Young people were especially interested in the Morse Code Practice Station. Here a young lady (YL) is learning Morse Code at the April 3, 2016 Pony Express Terminal NPOTA/Special Event Station N6P. (photo by Bob Woodward N6PGQ) 
Geomagnetic storms were predicted for April 3, foreboding poor radio propagation for the event.  Radio signals were few and weak for the first few hours while a geomagnetic storm with a K index of 5-6 was in progress.  Most contacts were made between 2000-2200 UTC when the K index had dropped to 1-2.  Contacts with amateur radio stations in a total of 17 states and provinces were logged.  Online log

See the full captioned photo story on Facebook and photo album.  To request a QSL card confirming your contact, please mail your card with an SASE to KP4MD address.

Jim Mazzuco K6IQ in contact with station KS7T at Pony Express Terminal NPOTA/Special Event Amateur Radio Station N6P


Michael Aretsky N6MQL operating at Pony Express Terminal NPOTA/Special Event Amateur Radio Station N6P


From Joe DeAngelo, AG6QO, ARRL Official Digital Relay Station
Posted March 29, 2016

Call for New Packet Network Nodes


Radio-all-the-way digital messaging networks are seeing a resurgence in activity in Northern California and elsewhere.

The availability of powerful new bulletin board software, like BPQmail, which integrates traditional packet and hf BBS message forwarding with WinLink Gateway and NTSD capability is a major force behind that resurgence.

The network of radio-mail stations is growing. K6ETA, AG6QO, N6RME and others provide a VHF network of packet stations which tie together packet users across Northern California. That network extends via HF, PACTOR, WINMOR, and ARDOP stations, into Nevada and Southern California and ties into the national network.

Modern BBS software allows users to send and receive radio-mail as if it were email, often using their familiar email clients on their computers, laptops, phones and other mobile devices.

A strong network requires additional nodes. Anyone interested in using or extending the network is encouraged to get involved. You can contact Joe, AG6QO for more information ag6qo(at), or visit his BPQ web page.

From Sheila Clement, KA7AJQ, ARES Emergency Coordinator, Alpine and Douglas Counties


Douglas County Amateur Radio Association members continue their weekly nets and monthly meetings. Members are extremely active in packet operations and weekly Nevada hospital Monday nets on EchoLink/IRLP which include some California check ins. Members are also active and supportive of Nevada Section nets and emergency planning. A Nevada Section NVIS antenna exercise is planned for April 16th.


Pony Express National Historic Trail
The Pony Express National Historic Trail - NPOTA (TR15)
Posted February 27, 2016

The Pony Express National Historic Trail (TR15) traverses Northern California and offers many opportunities to learn about its history and to conduct NPOTA activations in our Sacramento Valley Section. No admission fee is required along most of the trail. NPOTA trail activations only need be conducted within 100 feet of the trail itself.  Operation from private property is prohibited unless permission has been received.

Visit the National Parks Service interactive map to find the Pony Express Historic Trail and associated points of interest near you. NPOTA activations may be conducted with permission from sites along the trail not under NPS administration, such as waymarker monumentsremount stations and the B.F. Hastings Building in Old Sacramento.  In fact, NPOTA activations anywhere along the trail route, even in urban areas with proper permission, may offer unique challenges and opportunities!

Be sure to read the NPOTA trail activation rules and instructions and register your NPOTA activation for a truly enjoyable experience and public outreach!


ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Technical Coordinator, VHF Award Manager, HF Award Manager and DXCC Award Manager Bob, WB6VYH reminds us he can count cards and check applications for VUCC and WAS and DXCC...............

Bob will be at some of the Ham Swaps this year and most likely Ham Club meetings throughout Northern California.
Bob will also be doing NPOTA at some of the parks and monuments in northern California and will be able to do applications there too.

Please contact Bob ahead of time at or for information and appointment.



Amateur Radio Emergency ServiceApril 23 - Sacramento County ARES Training

Posted March 28, 2016

The Sacramento County ARES February training meeting will be Saturday, April 23, from 0900-1200 hours at the Sacramento County Sheriff Florin Service Center, 7000 65th St, Sacramento, CA 95823. 


Club and Member News


Update from the El Dorado County ARC
Posted April 28, 2016

We have a terrific April 28 meeting planned. Our speaker is Sandy, DL1QQ, from Germany. Sandy will talk about the Olympics of Ham Radio - The WRTC Championship, featuring the best contesters in the world. This is an event held every four years. 2014 was in New England. The next WRTC will be held in Germany, in 2018.

Our raffle prize will feature a brand new 2 meter mobile radio and other good stuff!

See you on Thursday. Bob, W1RH


Update from the Oroville ARS
Posted April 28, 2016

The OARS Monthly Breakfast will take place this Saturday, 30 April 2016, 9 am, at The Waffle Shop, 2107 Feather River Blvd (across the street from Applebee’s) in Oroville. Hope to see everyone there. 73, Jim, W7XZ


Update from the SOTARS/QCWA Chapter 169
Posted April 11, 2016

Our meeting is Wednesday, April 13th. Lunch is at eleven and Denny's also serves breakfast all day.
As usual the meeting will be called to order at Noon in the restaurant's back room.
The program for this month is another collection of short videos on various subjects. Again, I hope you will find them interesting.

We meet as usual at: Denny's Restaurant, 7900 College Town Drive, Sacramento. Phone (916) 383-7071, Near Howe Ave. and FWY 50
Please come and enjoy the good food and fellowship.

Update from the River City ARCS
Posted April 9, 2016


Phil Sittner spoke at our March meeting and demonstrated his 40/80 loop antenna. It was a great presentation. It looks to me like Phil, if he was in any of our shacks (and junk piles) for more than a day would have completed a project that that we could only dream about.

Our April meeting will feature Cliff Hall, KK6YYG speaking about APRS. I’m looking forward to seeing how this facet of our hobby can be used.

Last month, I asked us to be thinking of an emergency checklist and preparing for the unexpected. I’m working on my list and getting some of the “to do’s finished. Now that we’ve entered spring, it’s time to get some cleaning and organizing started.

On April 3 many of us are scheduled to be in old town Sacramento operating a CW station as part of NPOTA. We’ll give the club an update at the meeting.

Linda, KI6OLC is recuperating and needs help with our refreshments at the meeting. If you can help for a while, let me or any of the Board members know.

I am supposed to pick up my tower in a couple of weeks and work will begin on my station. It’s kind of strange to only have a portable HF and VHF station operating. Hopefully Murphy is on vacation somewhere a long distance away.

See everyone at the meeting.

73, Bob Woodward, N6PGQ, President, River City ARCS,

Update from the Nevada County ARC
Posted April 9, 2016

Message from our Fearless Leader

Most of the information in this column is about events coming up in May which the NCARC supports. There are two bicycle rides which we have been supporting. The first is on Saturday, May 14, and is the Gold Country Challenge, sponsored by the Rotary Club of Grass Valley. I believe this is the third time for this event and the NCARC has been supporting it from the beginning. Cal McKitrick, AI6MC, has been collecting names of people who will be available to provide ham radio communications for this event and while I believe he has been getting a good response, please check with him if you would like to participate. These types of events are good practice for setting up and participating in any type of communications support and the event sponsors are always appreciative of our help.

The next event in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Nevada County Mountain Bike Ride and it takes place Saturday, May 21, the very next Saturday after the Gold County Challenge. The NCARC has been providing radio communications support for the rugged South Yuba River canyon portion of this event for over 10 years (!) – in fact, I this year will be the 12th year of our support. I will be coordinating the club support for this event, so if you’re interested please contact me. While it does look like we have enough people to cover all the sites, it’s always helpful to have more than one person at a given site.

I also want to mention the new NCARC web-site which Cal McKitrick has put together for us. It looks very nice and the way Cal has arranged this, it should be relatively straightforward for the club to maintain this new web-site.

One more thing – I don’t know if you’ve heard, but Jim Dworak, KI6UOX, fell from a ladder on Saturday and broke a leg (in 5 places!!!). I went by to see him on Monday and while he was doing OK, he has what almost looks like a good 2 meter antenna bolted onto his leg and will be going through a long process to get back on his feet. I’ll have more information at the meeting

That’s it for this column – I think our club President, Larry Latta, K6LRL, will be back in town soon and so you all might be seeing him at the meeting.

Hope to see you all at the meeting.

73, Walt, N6HNS

Update from the Golden Empire ARS
Posted April 9, 2016


What a beautiful time of year – the winter storms are almost past us and the weather is beautiful. Good days to get outside and check how our antennas faired the winter, and start erecting those new antennas that we thought about all winter. That’s what’s going on at my QTH as I look forward to being able to operate bands and modes that I have not been able to get on for quite some time. Here’s to new beginnings!

I truly hope that by now you have completed the club survey and if not I urge you to do so as soon as you can. I and the Board members really want to help the club to be all that it can be for now and the future, your input is crucial.

At this month’s club meeting Scott, KE6VUS will be presenting a program on the MESH network, a whole new way of expanding our horizons. Be sure to start looking through all of your cubby holes, closets, garage, workshop and anyplace else for those “treasures” - items that you have held on to just in case you may someday use it. Well, it may be time to make that decision that maybe you won’t ever use it but it just might be that thing that someone else could sure use. At our May meeting is our annual GEARS auction. This event so helps our club treasury and could bring you a few bucks if you desire. We hope that this year is huge – spread the word, dust off those items and mark your calendar for Friday, May the 20th

Anna, KG6ZOA is again chairing our participation in the annual Wildflower bike run. Please contact Anna as soon as possible if you can help out on this. This is a great opportunity to exercise our radio capabilities in the field and show the public what a valuable and fun resource that we are.

“The sky is the limit with amateur radio”

Larry Marcum, KA6GND, GEARS club president, 530-345-5399 or

Update from the Yuba-Sutter ARC
Posted April 9, 2016

Bike Around The Buttes

Bike Around the Buttes is coming Saturday, April 16th. The routes are 17 mile, 40 mile, and 100 mile bike rides to raise money for Children's Type 1 Diabetes. The club will be helping out by communications support again this year. Additional help is needed. Also, if you would like to ride along with a SAG that can be arranged.
To date Chris (KD6CP) has five (5) volunteers including himself.
More volunteers (about 25) and extras are needed. If you have never worked the BATB, volunteer, ride along with someone or help at a site – we will be happy to show you the ropes.


We will meet on Tuesday, April 5, 2016, 7:00 p.m. at the Yuba County Library. The topic for this meeting is handheld transceivers. Be sure to bring yours. A drawing for door prizes will be held. The grand prize is a choice between a $50 HRO gift certificate and a mag mount antenna. The club store will be there for those who wish to make purchases.

Chris (KD6CP)



Update from the Oroville ARS
Posted March 31, 2016

Greetings from the Oroville Area.

OARS ( held its March meeting on the 11th with 26 in attendance. The agenda was mainly centered around upcoming events for club participation, including the Wildflower Bicycle Run on 24 April, Oroville Fiesta Days Parade on 7 May, Field Day in June and the Berry Creek Berry Festival in August. Other items discussed included adding a family membership to the club's dues structure and the possibility of obtaining a club post office box. The program was devoted to an emergency preparedness drill with Broadband Hamnet, to be conducted by YSARC on 2 April at 1900 local time. Following that, Gary, KF6EWO, did a short presentation on setting up a crossband repeater and the rules implications in doing so.

The (last Saturday of the month) OARS Monthly Breakfast took place on 26 March with 22 present at The Waffle Shop in Oroville for good food and good company.

The next OARS regular meeting will take place on Friday, 8 April 2016, 7pm at St. Paul's Parish Hall, 1430 Pine Street in Oroville. The Feather Fiesta Days Parade, to take place on 7 May, is expected to be high on the agenda.

Three Sacramento Valley certificates for the 2015 ARRL DX Contest found their way to Oroville: John Hunt, K7XE, 15M Phone, with Division Winner sticker; Jim Jennings, W7XZ, 40M CW and 20M Phone, the latter with Division sticker.

73, Jim, W7XZ

AF6ND STATION PHOTO Equipment List (L to R and T to B)   TOP Row  Hammarlund HQ-129 (Fully Operational since 1946)  HeathKit 2KW HM-102 Power Meter (status unknown yet)  Dentron M2000A Antenna Tuner (Inspected and Repaired this last weekend)  HeathKit Ham Scope (at least partly functional)  HeathKit Ham Scan (at least partly functional)  HeathKit Aux VFO Matches the SB101 below (status unknown, unrestored, dirty from tobacco smoke)  Dell Computer (For station use. Looking for room for the monitor)   BOTTOM Row  Kenwood R3000 HF Receiver (fully functional waiting for its own antenna.)  Kenwood 2Meter All Mode Transceiver (need TLC still) HeathKit SB220 2 KW HF Amplifier (status unknown-no power in shack yet-restoration done)  HeathKit SB101 HF Transceiver (Restored, RX working TX unknown, Mods for VFO operaon needed)  HeathKit Keyer  HeathKit Station Speaker + HP-23C power supply for the SB101 (all new diodes, caps and resistors)  Home Brew 3 channel Mike AMP  Home Brew Station Power control (to be interlocked with Dentron lightning protect switch)  HeathKit 1KW Cantenna   NOT IN PICTURE is more HeathKit , Yaesu, Kenwood, Radios, Home Brew G5RV mulband wire dipole, test equipment and etcetera, too much to list. Update from the El Dorado County ARC
Posted March 29, 2016


Here’s hoping that this finds all of you well and happy.

I began my semi-retired mode of operating a year ago now and the extra day every weekend is helping to produce results on my many projects especially my Ham Shack. Last year, starting about mid-April, I attended the W6SFM CW class where I finally overcame being code illiterate. Because my HF radio project has taken a back seat to certain other projects my proficiency has not improved much since last year but I am now practicing with a HeathKit Keyer with Iambic paddles. It is a whole different experience than the straight key, but a lot of fun as well. Still practicing with the straight key and one day I will hit the airwaves with one or both.

I am including a photo of my HF rig which went live this last weekend on RX only. Attempts to make RF into a dummy load have not yet yielded any happiness, but the RX section has actually picked up someone sending CQ on 20 meters a couple of times. Except for keeping the shack warm with the heat from all those filaments, that’s about it for radio contacts.. Some well spent time with the SB101 manual will hopefully cure the remaining issues.

Coming up next month is the Century Bike Ride event that Jay is coordinating.

Well it’s been a busy rainy month here at Lake Woebegone, and I expect more of the same for April. Stay safe, have fun (or are those last two mutually exclusive?) and I hope to see you at the meeting on the 31st.

Regards, Don, AF6ND

Update from the Sierra Foothills ARC
Posted March 29, 2016

The Sierra Foothills ARC is just coming down from our "high" with the success of our 2nd Annual Loomis Hamfest. While the rain was threatening, we had dry weather from very early to afternoon. If you didn't come due to rain, you missed a great swap. While we have photos and video on the club website: Yesterday, Ham Nation aired our video during their show. It is Episode 240, March 23rd.

Our President, Orion Endres, AI6JB was the Chairperson for this year's event and he and our fellow club members did a super job. Never knew what the Loomis Train Depot looked like at 0-dark-thirty before. Hi.

Field Day - as SFARC and others prepare for our Ham Community's annual event, we hope the snow melts at Nyack before Field Day. Will have more stations, antennas and people this year, plus we want to see how good Tyghe, W6TJR and Bob, K6UDA are at flying the video drone through the antennas and trees. Our objective, besides a great score, is to make our site Family friendly and get some kids interested in Ham Radio.

General Meeting - Always the 2nd Friday, each month and everyone is welcome. We have "Tech 4 Ten" a technical 10 minute quick demo or talk, then our Main Program, followed by a drawing. Of course there are refreshments. It all happens at 7:30pm in the Rose Room of Auburn's City Hall (next to the police station off 49).

George, KG6LSB is coordinating radio support for the MS Society walk in Folsom; and the Diabetes Tour de Cure, Loomis. We also are looking for operators for both the WSER -Western States Endurance Run and the Tevis Cup races. Please contact Ralph Lucas, W6RWL at: or for more information and to sign up. For those new hams, the WS100 starts in Squaw Valley and runs down the mountain ridges ending in Auburn, CA. Dates: June 25-25. Tevis is the same course but with riders and their horses. Dates July 23-24. And just a note of remembrance for Mary Ann Balthrope, KKE6EST/sk who was so active in helping run those two races for many years.

VE team License Exams - Every First Saturday, monthly at 8am in Raley's Market on Douglas at Auburn-Folsom Road, Granite Bay. Always happy to see folks pass their exam and get their "ticket" Even better when we get to talk with them on the air.


SFARC Nets - Every Thursday night at 7:30pm on the W6EK/r is our main net. Everyone is invited to check in. There is a Satellite report, ARRL News, DX conditions, a few words from our Officers, plus a Mystery Question! Also every First and Third Wednesdays at 7:30pm is our Elmer Net. Open to everyone, it is a place to ask questions and get answers. New or old alike, anything relating to Ham Radio is welcomed.


Contact you on Field Day!

73 de WF6J, ARRL PIO

Sierra Foothills ARC Hamfest Media Hits
Posted March 29, 2016

The Sierra Foothills ARC Hamfest is now featured at 18:00 on the TWiT Ham Nation Netcast Episode 240 as well as in KMAX-TV's Good Day Sacramento's on-air segment and still photos.

Update from John Mitchell, KK6CJL
Posted March 31, 2016

My wife (KK6CJM) and I (KK6CJL) were able to be guests in the radio room on the Queen Mary in Long Beach about a week ago. My mother (an American Nurse in Southern England during WWII) sailed home from England after WWII on this ship so it has always had special meaning to me. I was especially pleased to be honored to put my new Extra ticket to use as a guest operator from W6RO that day. It was impressive how the pileup "parted the seas" for me when "Queen Mary" was mentioned on the air!

My Dad was wounded near Paris while serving with the 30th Division in 1944. Yes my Mom was a nurse in the American hospital in Blandford, England that nursed him back to combat in time for the Battle of the Bulge. They were married in England right after VE Day and my Mom wore a wedding dress made out of a patient parachute. He returned to the US before she did but was waiting for her when she got off the Queen Mary in the USA.

The nurse with the patient in traction picture includes my Mom. It has been used in the official history of Blandford Camp…now a Base for the Royal Signal Corps.

Any properly licensed HAM can arrange to be a guest operator with a valid license and advance arrangements for time in the radio room.

...No photo received...

Al Canton, KM6AAI KM6AAIs Radio in Cup Update from Al Canton, KM6AAI
Posted March 31, 2016

Al Canton (KM6AAI) in Fair Oaks, CA is a brand new ham who had a problem. He bought a Kenwood K20A hand-held radio which he liked a lot but found that it was too thin to stand on his desk. "The slightest movement would knock it over, to say nothing of when my cat Ziva jumped up," he complained.
He looked all over the house for a possible stand for the radio but found nothing. At last it dawned on him. "Why not just put it something that had a wider bottom and which was designed to be stable... a coffee cup!"
He reports that this not only solved his stability problem, but found that the cup actually improved the audio output.
"I can now put it in scan mode and listen to the traffic without fear that it will either tip over or fall off the desk," he says.
Of course, it is important to remember NOT to pour coffee into the cup while the radio is in it!

-73-, Alan Canton, KM6AAI, Fair Oaks, CA, ac(at), Managing Partner, New Media Create

I Am Now KM6AAI And It Only Took 55 Years!

Stockton-Delta ARC Swapmeet
Posted March 7, 2016

Stockton Swap April 9th 7:00 am. They have Ham Cram and more.

73, Carl, WF6J

Update from the Golden Empire ARS
Posted March 8, 2016


Greetings all. It was so wonderful at our February meeting to be able to hear what bands, modes and wishes that the attendees have in this wonderful adventure that we are on in ham radio. We have such a wealth of experience and interests in our club that we should share with our fellow hams. It was also invigorating to have 6 new hams and potential members for us to meet – welcome!

As of this writing that yesterday we held our first club breakfast in quite some time. There were 13 lively members and visitors enjoying breakfast together, swapping stories and discussing a wide variety of topics. No one seemed to be in a hurry to leave which is an indication of a good time! We hope to see many more of you at our next GEARS breakfast on Saturday, April 23rd

At our March 18th general club meeting Robert Lasso, W6RQR will be our guest speaker. Robert is an avid contester on many bands and will give us an overview of the many contests available to us all throughout the year.

Our club has wonderful resources in our own repeaters, 146.850 and 440.650. They sit idle most of the time but are always available to jump into action merely by the press of your PTT (Push To Talk) button. They are a great way to stay connected with other hams in our area, some that are passing through and also an incredible way to connect to the world through our IRLP and Echolink links. Be sure to identify once in awhile when monitoring, you just never know who else might be out there available to have a QSO (conversation) with. Repeaters are one way that short wave listeners and persons hoping to become a ham listen and learn from us who are on the air. Go ahead – talk it up!

“It’s a Small World with Amateur Radio”

73, Larry Marcum, KA6GND, Club President, 530-345-5399

Update from the Yuba-Sutter ARC
Posted February 27, 2016

Bike Around The Buttes

Bike Around the Buttes is coming Saturday, April 16th. The routes are 17 mile, 40 mile, and 100 mile bike rides to raise money for Children's Type 1 Diabetes. The club will be helping out by communications support again this year. Additional help is needed. Also, if you would like to ride along with a SAG that can be arranged.
To date Chris (KD6CP) has five (5) volunteers including himself.
More volunteers (about 25) and extras are needed. If you have never worked the BATB, volunteer, ride along with someone or help at a site – we will be happy to show you the ropes.


We will meet on Tuesday, Mar. 1, 2015, 7:00 p.m. at the Yuba County Library. The club store will be there and a short presentation of what is in the club store will be given. After the club store presentation we will have a short discussion and posssible vote to determine if the store is going to continue or close down once all items are sold. Afterwards, Eric (W6ETJ) will be giving a talk about his 2 meter “superstation.”


You are invited to participate in the “NorCal Special Event Simplex Drill” April 2nd 2016 at 7pm. We will have 5 stations placed at undisclosed elevated locations around the Sacramento Valley. Each rover will be on their own 2 meter simplex frequency. Your goal is to try and make contact with as many of them as you can. Each rover will have a contact confirmation number for you to log. After you have made contact with as many rovers as you can, you will then relay your contact numbers back to net control and the drill is then complete.
Repeater check-ins begin at 7:00 pm on the WD6AXM repeater 146.085 + offset PL 127.3 located atop the Sutter Buttes. After that, simplex frequencies will be announced for each of the five stations at undisclosed locations. More info will be announce at the beginning of the net What equipment is needed for the event? Any 2 meter radio will do but, this is your chance to try for long distance. So, you only have a HT? No problem! Are you a big gun base station? No problem! We have something for everyone with this event.
Also have a pen, note pad and be willing to try.
The purpose of this exercise is to increase our VHF emergency readiness and test our equipment for long distance communications.
Please mark your calendar and don’t miss out on the fun!

Chris (KD6CP)

Update from Samuel F. Morse ARC
Posted March 8, 2016

SFM ARC News Letter March, 2016

The W6SFM Samuel F. Morse ARC welcomed 14 members and 2 guests to this months SFMARC in-person monthly meeting. Turn out was once again high. We’re still missing a few of the “regulars” at our monthly meeting and it would be great to see them once again too. It’s always nice to see all of the faces of the club members come out on a regular basis. This month guests were Ward, our soon to be CW Beginners class student, and Susan, K6DQS.

A past guest, Norm, WB6RVR has decided to join the W6SFM as a member. Welcome to the group Norm! As a member of the SFM ARC you will receive aW6SFM.COM email addresses and personal Member webpage where you can proudly display your bio and personal pictures to the public. We encourage our members to post news, photos and other information about themselves as well as their hobbies. Feel free to visit all our member’s page found in the members section of the W6SFM website.

Reports of our March in-person meeting:

SFM ARC President Mike, N6MQL called this months meeting to order. Mike read the month’s budget report. As usual donations to the club are always appreciated. Club. Donations are used for the purpose of organizing PR booths such as the Kids Day in the Park event, Ranch Cordova and other events where the SFM ARC introduces Ham Radio and Morse Code to Children and the general public. If you would like to contribute to this cause please feel free to visit our home page for a PayPal link to donate.

If you are interested in purchasing some of the fashionable Samuel F Morse Club merchandise such as Personalized Mugs, Hats (ball cap), club Pens or T-Shirts we ask that you go to the W6SFM.COM website and click on the Merchandise link at the top of our home page for ordering information. Club members receive a 20% discount on all T-Shirt orders.

Club Secretary Chris, AI6U proceeded to read in last months meeting notes and the totals for our On-line / On-air net meetings for the month. Once again we’re getting good check-ins both on-air and on-line. We had a total of 28 QNI on-air and 6 On-line viewers, with improved local band conditions. We love to hear about your current weeks happenings. Net meetings offer a way for club members to get together between in-person meetings. Especially for those that are out of town. Please refer to our W6SFM homepage for on-air meeting times and location. You do not have to be a member of the SFM ARC to join in with our On-air Net meetings.

Topics of Discussion at our in-person meeting included Kid's Day In The Park (April 30). W6SFM will begin setting up around 9 am. The event held in Hagan park runs from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm. More on this next month.

Also discussed was the annual "bogus story" contest to be held at at our next month's meeting. This event invites our club members to write a simple 1 page Ham Radio related "bogus" story, or "tall tale". Members will then read their stories at our April meeting. The story with the most votes will win the W6SFM Bogus story trophy. This trophy is held by that member until the next April's contest. If you are interested in attending the SFM ARC in-person meeting to listen everyone is welcome to join us for that.

ARRL Newsletter highlights discussed included the US amateur radio licenses increase over the 2015 year. Once again we covered the topic of something that hits home for many club members, HR1301. As it continues to be on track, with a total of one hundred and twenty three sponsors. A count of members who have worked a "National Parks On The Air", station marking the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service was taken. It seems that a few have already worked some of the stations. This event runs to the end of this year, so we hope to have many more reports on members working some of the off the beat and path stations. (Pun intended)

This month the W6SFM admin had received some emails from members and non members who were/are under the impression that the ARRL is trying to petition the FCC to give more CW sub band area to the RTTY operators thus taking away CW areas to QSO. Mike N6MQL presented a graph that explained how this wasn't the case, and that in actuality the CW operators would actually receive MORE sub band area if the proposal to the FCC should pass. If this were to happen the ARRL would move it's allocation of the CW area 10 KHz higher to match more closely with the ITU Region 2's design.

For our “show and tell” portion of our meeting, Mike, K6LQ displayed us his 1940's Brelco Navy straight key. He also presented a GHD model 504B straight key for everyone to try. Both keys were in very nice condition and operated flawlessly. Some were surprised by the feel of the 1940's Brelco key as it felt much better to send on than it looked like it would. Mike, N6MQL showed the club the latest RigExpert antenna analyzer AA-230Zoom. It was explained that with this analyzer measurements of TDR (time domain reflectometer) Reactance, Resistance, Return Loss, Impedance, SWR both with graphs and Smith Chart views could be made as well as simultaneously measuring up to 5 different frequencies within one band, or multiple bands. Mike also mentioned that he was an authorized dealer for RigExpert products and that if anyone was interested they could contact him to purchase.

Our next SFM ARC in-person meeting will be held at its normal time and address. Our upcoming April 7th (followed by our May 5th) SFM ARC in-person meeting will be held in the Howard Crowley room upstairs at the Carmichael Presbyterian Church. More information is available on the homepage of our website. At our April meeting, we will be discussing Kids Day In The Park in Rancho Cordova (April 30). Our annual W6SFM "bogus story" contest will be held. Bring your best story along with more ARRL new stories and news events. As always we will have our Tech (show and tell) portion where members and visitors are asked to share their Ham Radio related items they find of interest. Feel free to visit our In-Person meeting with items that you purchased or were given that you would like to share with the group. Please Check out the W6SFM home page for more details. We also hope to discuss the clubs results in the on-air North American QSO party contest if those results are released. The SFM ARC participated in this event held on the 9th – 10th of Jan. Please see the W6SFM website for more news / events and pictures posted. Be sure to check back often for updated information on the club and its happenings.

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 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. For those that would like to watch the Live Feed on their Apple IOS or Android devices a “LiveStream” App is required. For instructions and the proper location to view the LIVE FEED please contact Mike, N6MQL for more setup information. Those visiting the on-line site are welcome to make themselves known by using the ‘contact us’ link to let the net op (NCS) know you are there. This of course is not mandatory; just a way of making everyone feel more involved in our on-air nets.

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 know and use 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!

Until our next news letter I thank you all very much for being a member of the SFM ARC, without you this club could not exist. Very 73,

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