Field Day 2022

 https://wvara.org/wordpress/field-day-2022/

In case you haven’t heard, this upcoming weekend is WVARA’s big event of the year — Field Day on Mora Hill. 

Field Day is a great opportunity to get outdoors, gain experience assembling equipment in the rough, and operate a station under challenging conditions.  This year we will operate QRP (5 watts max) in the 9A Battery category with phone, CW, and digital HF stations as well as satellite ground station, a Get-On-the-Air station for rusty hams, and a VHF/UHF station.  

Feel free to drop by and join the fun.   We’ll set up on Friday, and operations run from 11am Saturday until 11am Sunday.  For more details, refer to our webpage at  https://wvara.org/wordpress/field-day-2022/

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Radio Swap Meet This Sunday, June 19 in Santa Cruz

Greetings, All,
Please plan to join us this Sunday, June 19, for the monthly Swap Meet at the Santa Cruz County Club Repeater Station parking lot, 8am-2pm. 
Vendors bring own tables, tarps, shade canopy. No need to RSVP.

Tentative FOX HUNT at 10am.

Free admission. Free hot dogs and drinks. 
Take Morrissey Blvd. exit from Highway One, and follow signs to the DeLaveaga Golf Course and Shakespeare Santa Cruz.

Good clean fun! Please share this information with others you feel would be interested.

73,
Becky
KI6TKB

June 8 Membership Meeting

Our next WVARA meeting will be at 7pm on Wednesday, June 8, at the Silicon Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross, 2731 N. First Street at Plumeria Drive (southwest corner) in San Jose.   If you haven’t been to the Red Cross in a while, “talk-in” is usually available on the Association’s repeaters. Best choice would be 2m/220.  This month’s meeting will cover final details related to Field Day preparations and see a presentation about the wonders of nano VNA.

Three things to remember:

  • 1) The Red Cross locks the exterior doors at 7pm sharp, so please come a few minutes early in order to get access to the building.  
  • 2) We will be in Meeting Room 3 — not our traditional meeting room.  Room 3 is about 100 feet from the side door.  As a result, late comers who knock on the side door won’t be heard from our meeting room.  If you are late and need access, you can call my cellphone (408 636-6172) and someone will come let you in.  But please try to arrive before 7pm to avoid this hassle.
  • 3) The Red Cross policy is that everyone must wear a mask when entering the building, but that masks are optional once you are in a meeting room.  Please be considerate to others regarding COVID.

BTW, several of us meet for dinner at 5:45pm nearby at Disn-N-Dash (2551 N. 1st St. San Jose):  https://dishdash.com  Some WVARA members also dine at Panera Bread a few miles further to the south 

at 503 Coleman Avenue at Autumn Parkway at the San Jose Market Center.  Feel free to drop by either location for dinner.


Jim, K6EI
WVARA Vice President


Meeting Presentation:  The Nano Virtual Network Analyzer.  The speaker at our June 8 meeting will be Stan Dye, KC7XE.  This presentation will describe and demonstrate the nanoVNA and some of its capabilities and practical uses for amateur radio, along with a couple of the available software packages that can be used to control it from your computer.  Stan has found the nanoVNA to be a very useful and educational tool.  It is far less expensive than commercial antenna analyzers, but is more versatile and fun to use.  You do have to be a bit adventurous, since the nanoVNA started as an open-source community supported project, without much good documentation – but it has an excellent and very active online user community that is very knowledgeable and helpful.  Stan reports that while far from an expert on the nanoVNA, he has learned a great deal using it and interacting with other users.

Stan is an active WVARA member.  He was first licensed over 45 years ago as a novice with callsign KA7JPQ.  This call seemed to him to take forever to send in morse code, so only a few months later he upgraded to Advanced Class and received call sign KC7XE.  A few years later he upgraded to Extra class.  In 1984 Stan received a Master’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Brigham Young University, and began his career in Silicon Valley at a small high-tech think-tank named ESL, where he met several other ham radio operators who are (or have been) members of this club.  Stan worked his entire career at ESL, which became part of TRW and later Northrop Grumman, doing advanced projects for defense intelligence operations.  He became an expert in specialized digital communications signals and systems, designing and building hardware processors, DSP software and digital signal analysis algorithms.  Stan received several honors and commendations for his work, including being named a Northrop Grumman Technical Fellow in 2005, and receiving the NGMS President’s Award for Innovation.

May Meeting – All Things Field Day

Believe it or not, we are returning to the Red Cross Building for our next WVARA meeting, which occurs at 7pm on Wednesday, May 11.  It’s been over two years since we were last there, and several major changes have occurred:

  • The Red Cross locks the exterior doors at 7pm sharp, so please come a few minutes early in order to get access to the building.  
  • We will be in Meeting Room 3 — not our traditional meeting room.  Room 3 is about 100 feet from the side door.  As a result, late comers who knock on the side door won’t be heard from our meeting room.  If you are late and need access, you can call my cellphone (408 636-6172) and someone will come let you in.  But please try to arrive before 7pm to avoid this hassle.
  • The Red Cross policy is that everyone must wear a mask when entering the building, but that masks are optional once you are in a meeting room.  Please be considerate to others regarding COVID.

Meeting Topic:  All Things Field Day.  We have a permit from the Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve to operate Field Day from Mora Hill June 24-26.  We only have a couple of months to get ready and there’s lots to do.  The focus on our May 11 meeting will be to discuss our plans and coordinate tasks.

Oh, and if you haven’t already done so, please take our on-line Field Dayparticipant survey (at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/7HWZMDB) to assist us in planning.

WVARA is returning to Mora Hill for Field Day 2022

This year’s Field Day operation (June 24-26) will be at the top of Mora Hill located in the San Antonio Open Space Reserve. We will likely be running HF/SSB, HF/CW, HF/Digital, as well as VHF/UHF stations at 5 watts output in the Battery category.   There will also be a Get On The Air (GOTA) station for rusty hams.  As a COVID precaution, we will not be providing a GOTA coach this year, and will be encouraging social distancing at all our stations.

We will operate for the entire 24-hour period (11am Saturday to 11am Sunday). This means we will need operators throughout the event. Your involvement is welcome during set-up, tear-down, and throughout the 24-hour on-the-air period! You can see a description of our previous 2019 Mora Hill Field Day operation at: http://www.arrl.org/soapbox/view/9899

In preparation for Field Day, we want to get an idea of who is likely to be around to assist with set-up, tear-down, and operating. If you are planning to participate at Mora Hill, please complete the following on-line survey.  We want to ensure that everyone who has a desire to operate gets an opportunity:   https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/7HWZMDB

Jim Peterson, K6EI

WVARA Field Day Coordinator

April Virtual Meeting – Revised

This month’s WVARA meeting will be at 7pm on Wednesday, April 13, via Zoom. Zoom details can be found at the end of this email.  (By the way, this will be our last meeting via Zoom.  Beginning in May, we will be back at the Red Cross Building.  More details to come.)

Our original April speaker, Stan Dye, has asked to be rescheduled to our June meeting.  So instead, this month we’ll be learning all about how to get active on 160 meters.

Our April 13 presentation will be all about Top Band — the 160 meters band.  We’ll discuss the features that make this band unique, including several myths about this mysterious.  We’ll also cover ideas for how the average city dweller can install an effective antenna on this band.

Our speaker is none other than Jim Peterson, K6EI, WVARA’s Vice President.  Jim holds the Pacific Division’s all-time top score in the ARRL 160 contest (QRP category) and has been active on this band for over three decades.  He has an MSEE focused on electromagnetic and signal processing from Ohio State and spent 38 years at ESL / TRW / Northrop Grumman.

April Virtual Membership Meeting

Our April 13 presentation will describe and demonstrate the nanoVNA and some of its basic capabilities and practical uses for amateur radio, along with a couple of the available software packages that can be used to control it from your computer. The nanoVNA is a very useful and educational tool. It is far less expensive than commercial antenna analyzers, but is more versatile and fun to use. You do have to be a bit adventurous, since the nanoVNA started as an open-source community supported project, without much good documentation – but it has an excellent and very active online user community that is very knowledgeable and helpful.

Our speaker, Stan Dye (KC7XE) is an active WVARA member. He was first licensed over 45 years ago as a novice with callsign KA7JPQ. This call seemed to him to take forever to send in morse code, so only a few months later he upgraded to Advanced Class and received call sign KC7XE. A few years later he upgraded to Extra class. In 1984 Stan received a Master’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Brigham Young University, and began his career in Silicon Valley at a small high-tech think-tank named ESL, where he met several other ham radio operators who are (or have been) members of this club. Stan worked his entire career at ESL, which became part of TRW and later Northrop Grumman, doing advanced projects for defense intelligence operations. He became an expert in specialized digital communications signals and systems, designing and building hardware processors, DSP software and digital signal analysis algorithms. Stan received several honors and commendations for his work, including being named a Northrop Grumman Technical Fellow in 2005, and receiving the NGMS President’s Award for Innovation.

March Virtual Membership Meeting

Our March 9 presentation will cover the theory behind compact loop antennas.  The practical usage and unexpected quirks of popular magnetic loop antennas will be explored.

Our speaker, Michelle Paquette (AA6MP) has worked in fields from nuclear power plant operations to systems software and software engineering, as both an engineer and an instructor. As an engineer she holds 19 patents for inventions used by hundreds of millions of people every day, in Apple’s Macs, iPads, and iPhones.  As an instructor she has trained people in such varied areas as nuclear power plant operations, programming of in-circuit test systems and factory robots.  Michelle is a past president of the Benicia Amateur Radio Club, and an instructor in Mt Diablo Amateur Radio Club’s license classes, as well as a speaker and trainer in a number of other programs. When not teaching she is often found baking, doing finish carpentry, restoring old vacuum tube equipment or tinkering with compact antennas.

W6PIY