Date: Wednesday, Feb. 13, l980
Time: 12:00 Noon
Place: 238-543


Our guest speaker for the February meeting will be Jay Holladay, W6EJJ. Jay is Director of the Southwestern Division of ARRL, and has just returned from the semi-annual ARRL Board of Directors meeting. He will review recent League activities, problems, news from WARC, and discuss progress of the Long Range Planning Committee, of which he is a member. (N6NO)

For Shame If You Missed It!

The Third Annual (and most successful yet) JPLARC VHF/UHF Tune-Up Clinic was held on Saturday, Jan. 1:2, at WB6TEB's home in Arcadia. The turn-out was far greater than expected, causing a line of patients waiting for treatment. JPL'ers and their guests showed up with their VHF gear to be put on frequency, to have microphone and touch-tone pad levels set and deviation checked. A number of rigs were found to have previously unsuspected defects - broken wires, bad crystals and failed transistors. These were all fixed up by the good "doctor", Miguel Santana, WB6TEB, with the aid of some top-notch equipment, particularly the Singer FM10C signal generator and analyzer. The original schedule, 9 am - 12 noon had to be extended until nearly 3 pm to handle the 22 rigs that were brought in by some 18 people. Doughnuts were supplied by N6NO and N6AVW, and coffee by HK4CVV/W6. As one attendee remarked, "it was a great opportunity to socialize with so many people we hear on the repeater but seldom see in person." Our heartfelt thanks to Miguel for taking the time to help so many of us sound better on the repeater! (N6NO)

Miguel, WB6TEB, and Ron, WA6TPW, use the Singer signal generator/analyzer. (N6MP photo)

Eileen, KA6DGV, and John, N6AVW, survey the collection of VHF transceivers waiting to be checked out at the tune-up clinic. (WA6MYJ photo)

W6VIO Voyager Commemorative QSL Cards, by Jim Lumsden WA6MYJ

The Voyager II QSL cards have been received from the printer. They are as impressive as originally envisioned and provide a stark contrast to the Voyager I card which was impressive in a different way. Both cards use the same format; only the images have been changed to establish their identity.

Every club has its specialists and ours is fortunate to have Gordon Crawford, WB6DRH. Gordon accepted the QSL design task for both The Voyager I and II commemoratives, and has produced an impressive product.

The QSL cards are double width (see photo). The Voyager I card carries an enhanced color close-up of Jupiter's Great Red Spot; the Voyager II card front carries the full disc images of the four Galilean satellites in full color. The reverse sides carry a sampling of black and white images of Jupiter's ring, Io's volcanoes, and the surfaces of Ganymede and Europa along with a short description of each. A detailed trajectory time line through the Jovian system is also included. The cards have been praised for their design and impact by both the JPL Public Affairs Office and the Voyager Project.

It is difficult to appreciate the wide impact of commemorative QSO's and QSL's until you hear the comments about previous cards, some as old as three years, while working a current commemorative. Many even remember the association of N6V (the 1976 Viking special call sign) with W6VIO, the Club's regular call. The inability to get a special call sign may have been a blessing for us.

This club has a responsibility particularly to the amateur world. We are in a position to provide a dimension to the space and advanced research effort that is not and realistically cannot be provided by other means. We can provide pride, insight, and some measure of education on a one-to-one personal basis with people throughout the world. Our QSL card is a permanent reminder of that memorable QSO. As such, our card carries an added responsibility: that of education. Gordon's card designs do just that.

Saturn encounter by Voyager I is rapidly approaching (November, l980). Let's keep the tradition going.

N6BMY Lost at Sea, by Pete Mason, N6BBP

As we reported in the October 'W6VIO CALLING', Cal Tech professor Jon Mathews, N6BMY, and his wife, Jean, left California in June on their yacht Drambuie for a year's trip around the world.

The Mathews caught the full force of tropical storm Carlotta in the Indian Ocean on December 24th. It appears that they were hit by winds up to 80 miles an hour. Experienced sailors are of the opinion that the boat should have survived the storm, although she might have been dismasted. However, no radio contact has been made with the Mathews since 0100Z on the 24th, when they reported winds of 40 knots. They are now about 10 days overdue their ETA at Durban, South Africa, of January 15th.

Jon had been maintaining twice-daily contact with VK6RU and VK6KD in Australia, and ZS6ANE and ZS5MU in South Africa. When no contact was made after three days, the ZS hams contacted the American Consulate in Johannesburg and Peter Mason, N6BBP. Pete notified the families, the Caltech administration, and the Air Force/Coast Guard Rescue Control Center in Honolulu. Jay Holladay, W6EJJ, Warren Kern, W6EDN, (a La Canada ham who had been maintaining a weekly schedule with Jon), and Pete, using W6VIO, set up regular schedules with the VK's and ZS's to collect information requested by the RCC about the Mathew's positions, plans, supplies, radio gear and emergency equipment.

The RCC mounted a five-day airplane search, using a Navy patrol plane based on Reunion Island, about 500 miles from the Drambuie's last reported position. A search of about 60,000 square miles failed to turn up any trace of the boat.

Although the Drambuie is overdue, there is still hope that the Mathews are sailing with a jury rig, and will arrive in South Africa safely.

The W6VIO Voyager II Commemorative QSL Card. Members are now in the process of filling out these cards and sending them to the thousands of hams who were contacted during the Voyager II Commemorative.

Developing a Solar Sail--An Appeal for Assistance, by Dr. Richard Van Allen KA6DEX

Exploration of the Solar System and the rational use of its resources in the long term requires forms of space transportation which are low in cost, high in capability and modest in the quantity of resources consumed by the transportation system itself. Solar sailing is a space propulsion technique that promises to be uniquely outstanding in these characteristics. A solar sail uses sunlight reflected by a large, lightweight aluminized plastic sheet as its means of propulsion, consuming no propellants. Its only mass is the original structure, the sail, and miscellaneous control motors and electronics; a solar sail has no engines or related massive power conditioners. For many missions, the simple design results in low cost relative to other propulsion systems. The lack of expendable propellant yields high performance, long lifetime and low operating costs. Use of solar sails is expected to be of considerable importance in space exploration and discovery of resources, and much later in the transportation of mining equipment and recovered resources.

Solar sailing received considerable attention at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL and other institutions during study of the proposed Halley's Comet rendezvous mission (since dropped for lack of funding), resulting in confirmation of capability and feasibility. Specific concepts were developed through a preliminary design stage. The World Space Foundation, with cooperation of the University of Utah, is carrying solar sailing into an advanced design and testing phase. The Solar Sail Project is directed by Jerome Wright, who was the technical manager for solar sail work at JPL until those activities ceased in 1977. Other engineers from JPL and elsewhere are participating. The first major Project goal is to conduct an engineering development mission with a controllable solar sail beginning in high Earth orbit prior to 1985, and perhaps as early as 1982. The engineering development spacecraft is to serve as a subscale prototype for a later spacecraft capable of carrying a scientific payload to near-Earth asteroids.

Communications Subsystem

In order to control and track the proposed spacecraft, a communications subsystem of the type used on recent OSCAR satellites is under consideration. Discussions with Jan King and Perry Klein of AMSAT have indicated that the OSCAR-type equipment satisfies mission requirements. Such equipment would include an amateur radio transponder for general use similar to the ones used on the OSCAR series. However, the personnel currently involved in the Project lack the necessary familiarity with OSCAR equipment to proceed with design and fabrication of flight hardware. Therefore, we are looking for individuals with an interest in participating in the design and fabrication of communications hardware for the Solar Sail Project. Anyone with such an interest, or who desires more information about the Solar Sail Project and the World Space Foundation may write to Dr. Richard Van Allen (KA6DEX) at the following address:

World Space Foundation
P.O. Box Y
South Pasadena, CA 9lO30

(The World Space Foundation is an independent nonprofit organization sponsoring space exploration and development activities on behalf of interested participants.

Minutes of Board Meeting, by Ron Zenone W6TUZ

The first Board Meeting for the New Year was held on January 23, 1980 at 12:00 noon in 238-543. Members attending the meeting included WA6MYJ, K6GPK, N6BF, N6AVW, W6ABW, WB6EMO, N6UK, N6NO, N6MP, WA6PEA and W6TUZ. The meeting was called to order by club president, George Morris with a quorum present. Minutes from the previous Board Meeting were read and approved.

Presidential appointments to the Board were announced by W6ABW. These included Jim Lumsden (Director-At-Large), Jay Holladay (Trustee) and Glenn Berry (Emergency Communications Manager).

Results of a membership survey taken last year regarding preferred pieces of equipment that should be purchased by the club were announced by Jim Lumsden. High frequency gear, antennas and repeater/autopatch items were at the top of the priority list. Items on the bottom of the list included computer, RTTY and OSCAR gear. Slow-scan-television and test equipment were listed midway in preference. Only twenty-four forms were submitted in response to the survey request.

1980 budget was cursorily discussed. A special meeting of committee chairmen and board members will be held before the next general meeting to establish a proposed budget. This iteration of the budget will be presented to the membership for discussion and approval at the February 1980 general meeting.

It was announced by John Walsh that code and theory classes will be continued this year. In addition, N6UK mentioned that theory classes will have to be modified in order to offset the degree of difficulty being encountered with new FCC exams.

A newly formed committee to be headed by Stan Sander was announced by W6ABW. This Station Operations Committee is responsible for maintaining the shack in operations readiness and for instructing members how to operate equipment before keys are issued. George also announced the formation of an AD HOC Equipment Procurement Committee. Membership of the AD HOC committee consists of Merv MacMedan, Jim Lumsden, Dick Piety, Stan Sander, Jay Holladay and George Morris.

It was suggested by WA6MYJ that the Board consider obtaining one (1) ICOM-211 with controller and two (2) crystal-controlled 220 MHz rigs via NASA Emergency Communications funding. The subject was briefly discussed and tabled due to lack of time. At the conclusion of this discussion, the meeting was adjourned by W6ABW.


- to Paul Lecoq, W7MDF, on the arrival of his fourth girl, Mary Elizabeth, just before Christmas. An ex-JPLer Paul is now teaching microprocessors, programming and electronics at Spokane Falls Community College and tells us he really enjoys the new work. When this busy guy gets back on the air, perhaps we will also be able to work him! Meanwhile, you can write to him at his new address - Box 931, Davenport, WA 99122. (N6NO)

Committees and Committee Chairmen of the JPLARC

The current chairmen of the various Club committees are:

Editor, W6VIO CALLING:        Stan Sander, N6MP, l83-6Ol
Education Committee:          John Walsh, N6UK 125-138
Facilities Manager:           Jim Lumsden, WA6MYJ, 125-224
Historian:                    Norm Chalfin, K6PGX, 180-302
JPL Net NCS:                  Warren Apel, K6GPK, 114-118
LA Council of Radio Clubs Representative: open
Librarian:                    Sam Weaver, WB6EMO 198-B9
Picnic Committee:             John McKinney, N6AVW, 233-208
Program Chairman:             Merv MacMedan, N6NO, 114-122
QSL Manager:                  Merrill Burnett, K6BER , 83-210
Repeater Committee:           Walt Diem, WA6PEA , T-1086
Solar Power:                  Gil Yellow, K6TOS, 506-328
Station Operations Committee: Stan Sander, N6MP, 183-6Ol
Tour Chairman:                Gordon Crawford, WB6DRH, 156-142
Voyager Commemorative:        Dick Piety, K6SVP, 158-205

Members interested in serving on these committees (or starting their-own!) should contact these persons directly.

Gil, K6TOS, and friends man the checkpoint at the intersection of Sierra Madre and Walnut along the route of the l980 Rose Parade (see "W6VIO Calling" last month for details.) N6MP photo.

Norm, K6PGX, and Doug, KA6AGE, operate the amateur television camera position at the intersection of Sierra Madre and Colorado Blvd. during the Rose Parade. (N6MP photo)

Licensing Classes to Begin

The Radio Club is expanding its education program by offering two courses in radio code and theory. One course will address the Novice examination requirements while the other is aimed toward upgrading for the General, Advanced and Extra Class licenses. Code practice for the upgrade class will range from 13 to 20 words per minute.

For further information on the class material or meeting details, please contact John Walsh (x3303) or Gordon Crawford (x4615). (WA6MYJ)

QSL Bureau Information

Do you have envelopes on file at the QSL Bureau? The Club has a supply of the proper size envelopes for sale. They are 5 cents each from the Club's QSL Manager, Merrill Burnett, K6BER, Mail Stop 201-225, ext. 6441. Stamp and address them to yourself with your call in block letters at the upper left-hand corner. If you regularly get cards, send several; if you don't know what's there, send one or two. Send to:

P.O. BOX 1460
SUN VALLEY, CA 91352         (N6NO)


2-meter transceiver covering 145-148 MHz, crystal or synthesized. Call Nash, W6HCD, at 449-7522 before 8 a.m.


- Synthecoder 220MHz synthesizer, $110.

- Wilson Mk II 2-meter handi-talkie, charger, extra battery pack, crystals for 146.52, WR6ABQ, and 145.30 (RACES), 4175.

- Magnum 6 compressor for Yaesu FT-101

- Heath SB-100 10 to 2-meter transverter, $100.

Call Walt, WA6PEA at x 3816 or 248-7525.

Dumont Model 304AR oscilloscope. Rack-mounted, DC-500KHz, with manual in perfect condition, $50. Contact Stan Sander, N6MP, at x2625.


Clegg FM-76 220 MHz., 12 channel, 10 watt mobile transceiver, $147. Contact Ron Ploszaj at x 7447.


To past members who have not yet paid their dues for l980, this will be your last issue of "W6VIO Calling" unless Treasurer John McKinney gets your $2 soon. Send your dues right away to John at M/S 233-208 or catch him at the next Club meeting.

Go back to the W6VIO Calling Index.