March 14th, 2020, is WVARA’s turn to host the Silicon Valley Electronics Flea Market! This will be the first Electronics Flea Market of the year, so attendance should be really good. We need volunteers for a number of key jobs.
Please view the online sign-up sheet and sign up for jobs here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/20F0444AEAC292-electronics1 –Load the van on Friday–Mark vendor stalls, help set up barriers, check vendor tickets (with ASVARO coordinators)–Set up the snack tent Saturday morning–Sell Donuts and Coffee Saturday morning–Tear down the snack tent Saturday afternoon–Help participants clean up after themselves Saturday afternoon–Remove chalk marks in the parking lot, and make sure the parking lot is in better shape than we found it–Haul cardboard to a recycling center–Unload the vans and trucks on Saturday afternoon Best of all, if you have items to sell, please bring them with you, we will set up WVARA sellers tables, free to WVARA members.
Questions? Please send a note to Greg, N6GD, at g.desbrisay@ieee.
The next WVARA meeting will be 7pm on Wednesday, February 12. This will be at our usual meeting place: the Red Cross Building on 2731 N. First Street (Meeting Room #5) in San Jose. Entry is via the side door on the west side of the building — look for the red WVARA sign. Visitors are welcome, and of course there will be chocolate chip cookies. If you haven’t been to the Red Cross, “talk-in” is usually available on the Association’s repeaters. Best choice would be 2m/220.
At this month’s meeting Ron Quan, KI6AZB, will give a presentation based on his latest book, “Troubleshooting Electronic Circuits: A Guide to Learning Analog Electronics”. Ron’s presentation will cover selected topics from the book, including electronic components, LEDs, and ham radio circuits such as oscillators, Software Defined Radio mixers and audio amplifiers. Ron will discuss how to debug circuit problems and fix via re-design.
Ron built his first crystal radio in the mid 1960s. Since then he has repaired radios, Hi Fi stereos, TVs, oscilloscopes, signal generators, lab power supplies, and broadcast equipment. Before passing his Extra Class License, he was a broadcast engineer in the 1970s for radio stations KALX FM and KNEW AM. He received his engineering degree that led to working at Ampex, Sony, and finally Macrovision where he was a Principal Engineer. Ron has written three electronics books and has taught at the university level on analog RF communications systems, signals, and circuits.
Looking forward to seeing you at next Wednesday’s meeting! BTW, several of us meet for dinner near the Red Cross around 5:45pm prior to the meeting at Disn-N-Dash (2551 N. 1st St. San Jose): https://dishdash.com/ Feel free to drop by and join us for dinner! WVARA members also dine at Panera Bread at Coleman Avenue at Autumn Parkway, at the San Jose Market Center at 6 p.m.
A highlight of Winter Field Day weekend was when Elecraft co-founder Wayne Burdick (N6KR) and his son Griffin dropped by our Winter Field Day site at Henry Coe State Park.
Wayne noticed we were using a pair of KX3s, and he provided some info on a little-known Elecraft feature for improved co-station isolation in multi-multi environments like Field Day: Using the transceiver’s menu to set “RX ISO” to “on” will suppress any radiation from the local oscillator that might otherwise leak to the antenna. This helps minimize oscillator birdies that could interfer with reception at the site’s other stations.
Definitely worth remembering this feature at Field Day in June!
Many, many warm thanks to Steve Sergeant, KC6ZKT, and his lovely wife Jean for the excellent job they did organizing and feeding our Winter Field Day team at Henry Coe State Park this past weekend.
Saturday night’s chili was especially fantastic, the weather was near perfect except for a little overnight rain, and we all had a really great time. I also learned a whole bunch about debugging quirky antenna/radio/laptop issues that never occur when I’m sitting at my home station.
I’m already looking forward to WFD-2021.- Jim, K6EI
The next WVARA meeting will be 7pm next Wednesday, January 8. This will be at our usual meeting place: the Red Cross Building on 2731 N. First Street (Meeting Room #5) in San Jose. Entry is via the side door on the west side of the building — look for the red WVARA sign. Visitors are welcome, and of course there will be chocolate chip cookies. If you haven’t been to the Red Cross, “talk-in” is usually available on the Association’s repeaters. Best choice would be 2m/220. Several of us meet for dinner near the Red Cross around 5:45pm prior to the meeting at Disn-N-Dash (2551 N. 1st St. San Jose): https://dishdash.com/ Feel free to drop by and join us for dinner! WVARA members also dine at Panera Bread at Coleman Avenue at Autumn Parkway, at the San Jose Market Center at 6 p.m.
At this month’s meeting Edison Fong, WB6IQN, will bring us up to speed on DMR (Digital Mobile Radio). This mode is getting really popular. The radios cost about $100-$150 depending on the quality you want. All of them also have conventional FM. DMR is a full digital format that is interfaced via the internet where one can 24/7 talk all over the world. The dream of working DX sitting on your couch is here. Since it is an open system originally set up by Motorola there are over 15 manufacturers of DMR radios – both hand held and mobiles. Learn how to get register as a DMR user, where to purchase a radio, how to program the radio and talk to the world without depending on propagation conditions.
Ed is a design consultant and has worked at Loral Space System, Microsoft and National Semiconductor. He has 25 years of experience in analog design for communications, data conversion and RF systems. Fong has 12 issued patents and has published more than 40 papers. He is a senior member of the IEEE. He also is on the faculty of UC Santa Cruz Silicon Valley, where he teaches RF Wireless Communications and I/O Design Fundamentals. Prior to Ed’s presentation on DMR, Steve Sergeant KC6ZKT will give a 15-20 minute update on WVARA’s Winter Field Day plans and preparations (Jan 25-26). Winter Field Day is an emergency communications exercise focused on providing communications services in some of our area’s mostchallenging conditions. Our WVARA team will be operating from a 2,840′ hilltop in Henry W. Coe State Park east of Morgan Hill — sounds fun although maybe a little chilly! You can learn more about WFD at https://www.winterfieldday.com . Looking forward to seeing you at next Wednesday’s meeting!Jim, K6EIWVARA Vice President
It has been officially confirmed the the meeting is Wednesday, November 13th.
We will be holding our Election for next years officers, followed by a Presentation by Eric Guthrie on some of the DXPeditions & people he has interviewed over the past Several Years!
I’ll look forward to seeing you All at the Red Cross at 7pm. I understand that the groups that meet prior to the meeting for dinner are planning to meet at the usual time and place! -73-Bill N6FFC w try
Join us to hear about Clay’s suitcase DX expedition and communications support for International Health Services (IHS) work in Honduras. IHS Found in 1982, International Health Service is an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) medical organization that provides medical and dental care to the impoverished people of Honduras. Each February approximately 100 people from all over the world head out on teams to various regions of Honduras and spend two weeks helping the people of Honduras and Nicaragua. IHS uses Pactor III & amateur radio as the main communication link for the field medical teams as they are often working in locations that are outreach of phone / cell service. Ham radio is used to arrange transportation, housing and schedule surgery or other medical service that the field team is not able to provide.
The DX expedition was in West Palm Beach on Roatan Inland for two days before moving to Rus Rus near the Nicaragua boarder for 8 days. Rus Rus DX expedition was done jointly with IHS field work as time & power allow.
Clay Couger was licensed in 92 as N5YJZ and was active in amateur radio throughout the 90’s while in college at Oklahoma State Univ. He severed one term as president of W5YJ OSU amateur radio club. Clay officially joined the Okie club by moving to California in 1999 and fell away from the hobby as he got caught in the Silicon Valley rat race. He became active again in 2016 due to a renewed interest in disaster support (wife says he needed a new reason to shop). He prefers to build things then get on air but has found FT8/FT4 to be wonderful mode as it can be run in the background while doing other things at the workbench.
International Health Services is actively recrewing for the Feb 2020 mission on February 14 to February 28. IHS are looking for licensed medical (DDS, DDO, MD, RN, OD, Dental Ass’t, NP, LPN, RDH, PA, CRNA, RPh, Pharmacist, Paramedic and EMT) professionals, amateur radio operators (general Lic and above), translators (Spanish, Garifuna, Miskito, Sumo, Pech, and Jicaque). We engorge spouses to join as there is always a need for next extra hands need to support the teams. For more information on IHS see their website at http://www.ihsmn.org/.
–Load the van on Friday–Collect payments from vendors at the gate bright and early on Saturday–Set up the snack tent Saturday morning–Sell Donuts and Coffee Saturday–Tear down the snack tent Saturday afternoon–Help participants clean up after themselves Saturday afternoon–Remove chalk marks in the parking lot, and make sure the parking lot is in better shape than we found it–Haul cardboard to a recycling center–Unload the van on Saturday afternoon Also, if you have items to sell, please bring them with you, we will set up WVARA sellers tables, free to WVARA members.
Questions? Please send a note to Greg, N6GD, at g.desbrisay@ieee, or chat with me at the club meeting this evening!
Winter Field Day, the event is held in late January (the next one is 1/25 – 1/26). The emphasis is on a contest that can prepare operators for emergency communications deployments in harsh environments.
The San Francisco Radio Club has announced its 5th annual 2 meter FM QSO Party on August 24th.https://www.sfarc.org/2019-2m-fm-qso-party.html This is a fun event — hams head to the hills in SF and try to contact as many zip codes all around SF and in the Bay Area as they can. One end of the QSO has to be in San Francisco but there are plenty of zip code “mults” out there both inside and outside of SF. 73, Mark W6IA