Calendar of Events

Meeting Notice

Prez’ Mix

November Club Meetings

DX News

25 Years Ago, W6VIO Calling

Classified Section

1999 Club Banquet


      ULS Status


Calendar of Events

December 9

Banquet Meeting, Noon – Marie Callenders

December 11

[Fontana Swap Meet, A. B. Miller HS, Fontana}

December 18

[CMRA Hamfest, Cal Poly, Pomona, 7 AM]

December 22

Board Meeting, Noon - 233-305J

December 25

[TRW Swap meet, Redondo Beach]

January 8

[Fontana Swap Meet, A. B. Miller HS, Fontana}

January 12

General Meeting, Noon - 238-543

January 15

[CMRA Hamfest, Cal Poly, Pomona, 7 AM]

January 26

Board Meeting, Noon - 233-305J

January 29

[TRW Swap meet, Redondo Beach]

February 9

General Meeting, Noon - 238-543

February 12

[Fontana Swap Meet, A. B. Miller HS, Fontana}

February 19

[CMRA Hamfest, Cal Poly, Pomona, 7 AM]

February 23

Board Meeting, Noon - 233-305J

February 26

[TRW Swap meet, Redondo Beach]

Meeting Notice

The next meeting of the  JPL Amateur Radio Club will be the annual Banquet held on Thursday, December 9, at 6 PM in the upper room at Marie Callendars, 2300 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena..  The Club Board of Directors meetings are held at noon on the fourth Wednesday of each month in 233-305J.  Everyone is welcome at both meetings; bring your lunch to the BOD meeting.  n

Prez’ Mix

By Bob Dengler, NO6B

Let me begin this month with a big THANK YOU to Scott Nolte, N6CUV, who volunteered to make the arrangements for this year’s holiday dinner meeting.  I’m certainly looking forward to this year’s dinner, which will be held on December 9th.  Look for more info elsewhere in this newsletter.

At last month’s meeting we announced a new Internet service that our club will be providing to the amateur community: a web-based list of operational repeaters in the LA basin.  Taking full advantage of HTML & server script, this list will feature the ability to sort & filter according to client-specified parameters as well as hyperlinks to sponsoring clubs of the repeaters in the list.  This web-based repeater list has been made possible primarily through the availability of the internet domain to our club, and through years of monitoring activity on the 2, 220 & 440 MHz bands.  As of this writing, the server has not yet been installed; watch for an e-mail & Monday net announcement regarding this service.

I attended the Southern California Repeater & Remote Base Association’s (SCRRBA, a Southern California frequency coordinator for all amateur bands above 50 MHz except for 2 meters & 220 MHz) general meeting held on November 20th at Harvey Mudd College.  We got a little “free PR” for our open 445.20 Cerro Negro repeater as it was announced at the meeting that our system was the FIRST open repeater frequency to be coordinated as a result of the recent move to switch from 25 to 20 kHz channel spacing.  SCRRBA also appears to be moving to free up channels that are unused by their respective coordinees.

The bad news is that SCRRBA is badly backlogged in performing 420-430 MHz coordination for linking.  I have submitted a volunteer application to SCRRBA in an offer to help out in this area, and I encourage any club member that can also help to contact SCRRBA via its web page at

Last Saturday I attended the last TRW swap meet that will be held in the same parking lot for nearly 20 years.  The TRW swap meet has always been the most popular local ham swap meet.  I remember the first one I went to in 1980 with Ken Reilly, N6CCE (I didn’t have a car yet!), when it was held in the parking lot just east of its current location.  It quickly grew to be bigger than what that lot could hold, so the W6TRW Amateur Radio Club, sponsor of the swap meet, moved it to the larger lot that it has occupied ever since. 

But it didn’t stop growing there.  Hams & other electronics vendors arrived earlier and earlier to get a seller’s spot.  Buyers began to arrive early as well, bringing flashlights to be able to see all the things for sale.  Apparently some of the local residents began to complain about the early-hour activity in the area, as the TRW ARC began to restrict entry into the sellers’ lot. 

Up until that time, there was no strict start or end time imposed on the swap meet, nor was there even a fee charged to sellers.  A 7:00 AM start time was set, which for a time being simply moved the swap meet to a long line of sellers’ vehicles strung around the lot waiting to get in.  A few buyers still showed up early & picked through the junk in some of the open-bed trucks waiting in line (I vaguely recall finding one or two good deals this way myself!). 

Nowadays, with 3 local ham swap meets covering the LA basin & Inland Empire, things have settled down a bit.  I even saw a few empty spaces in the seller’s lot this month.

Although this month’s TRW swap was the last one in the same parking lot, fear not: the swap meet will definitely continue on in another TRW parking lot directly across the intersection of Marine & Aviation.  Hope to see you there, and, more importantly, at our club dinner meeting!  73  n

November Club Meetings

By Jonathan Cameron, KF6RTA


The meeting was called to order by Bob Dengler (NO6B).  Those present were: Phil Barnes-Roberts (KE6PMZ), Chris Carson (KE6ABQ), Bob Dengler (NO6B), Warren Dowler (KE6LEA), Dayton Jones (K6DJ), Walt Mushagian (K6DNS), Scott Nolte (N6CUV), Jerry Person (KK6TS), Phil Smith (WB6LQP), Mike Tope (W4EF), and Jonathan Cameron (KF6RTA).

Bob Dengler led a discussion about setting up a computer server to host a database for some of the frequency bands relevant to the JPL Amateur Radio Club, such as 2 meters and 440MHz.  Apparently most sources of this information are outdated and an interactive database available (and updateable) on the Internet would be very useful.  We would need a computer and Bob encouraged the members to try to find a computer in the process of being phased out or surplused for this application.

There was some discussion of the slate of officers for next year.  Some arrangements have been made for most of the critical officers, although Bob is still looking for someone to be the Treasurer for next year.    Anyone interested in helping out as a club officer next year should contact Bob.

The annual club Christmas dinner was discussed.  Bob Dengler will try to find someone to arrange that meeting.


The official meeting was not held due to lack of a quorum.  This is the third month without an official board of directors meeting!  Announcements were made for the meeting, but apparently many of the officers were not available due to holiday plans.  Only three officers appeared for the board of directors meeting and the bylaws require five officers be present for a quorum.    n

DX News

By Jay Holladay, W6EJJ

Bob, N6ET, is on business travel, so he prevailed on me to be guest columnist this month.  With the return of high solar activity and good fall conditions the last few weeks have been very exciting on the HF bands.  If you ever thought of trying the HF DX game, now would be a good time.  

On ten meters it is possible to talk to most parts of the world with 100 watts and a simple antenna (dipole or vertical).  There is plenty of DX on ten every day now, but the ARRL ten-meter contest on December 11-12 (UTC) is an especially good opportunity to try the band.  See QST for contest rules or check the ARRL web page ( under contests.

Band conditions for the CQ Worldwide CW DX Contest last weekend (November 27-28) can only be described as “fabulous”.  This and its phone counterpart (last weekend of October) are the “big ones” for DXers.  Major contest operations and special DXpeditions operate from all parts of the world.  This provides great opportunities for hams with modest stations to add to their country totals.  Last weekend I was able to work DXCC (over 100 different countries contacted) with 74 countries worked on ten meters alone.  And my station is a tribander at 40 feet plus a vertical for 40 and 80 meters.  Maximum power out is 250 watts on ten and 500 on the other bands.  It is possible to be well on your way to DXCC with an exciter (100 watts out) and a vertical under these kinds of conditions.

Most of the specific DX information I have is stale by now, as it concerns operations that were set up for the CQ Worldwide contest mentioned above.  One good source of weekly DX information is the ARRL DX Bulletin, which is posted every Thursday afternoon on their web page.  Also, check the AC6V web page ( for an excellent set of links to all sorts of DX and contest information. 

There are lots of interesting and rare operations coming up next year, so stay tuned.  And give Bob or me a call if you would like to know more about working the ten-meter contest, or how to go about getting started in HF Dxing.  73 de W6EJJ.   n

25 Years Ago in:


By Bill Wood, W6FXJ

The December 1974 holiday issue was a little thin. Treasurer Merrill Burnett, K6BER, made a pitch for both ARRL and club membership renewals.  For those interested in minutia the ARRL dues were $7 a year while the club required a hefty $2 for 1975.

Dick Ulrich, K6KCY, and Bill Weber, W6HNQ, were studying the establishment of a club-owned instrument pool.  They needed inputs from the members as which instruments should be acquired.  A form was included to clip off and send to Bill.

Editor Elmer MacMillen included a copy of the December Extra issue of HR Report, a ham radio related newsletter of the era.  This covered the FCC amateur radio restructuring that was underway at the time.  Check out the club newsletter archive to read this. 

The full December 1974 issue can be accessed at the following Internet address:   n

Classified Section


Your want-ad or article for inclusion in a future issue of W6VIO Calling.  Submit to Bill Wood, W6FXJ, 31094 Hemlock Ave, Barstow, CA 92311; or email

For Sale:

QST 1990-1994 CD-ROM set, new.  $25 (ARRL price $39.95) Skip, W7NWY, 818-354-9674

US Tower (MA40) 40 foot tubular telescoping tower, hinged base, 2 co-ax arms, mast extension, Hy-gain Explorer-14 beam antenna with 40 meter dipole add-on, and Hy-Gain antenna rotator (Ham IV).  Original cost, less tax, was over $2200.  Sell all for $800.  Contact Ron Zenone (W6TUZ) at (626) 914-5585.   

Icom UT-40 Tone Squelch Option Board (CTCSS) for HT models 2GAT, 4GAT, 12GAT, 32AT or for mobiles 228, 448, 901, 1201, 2400 and 2500.  Cost: $80 (AES Catalog)  Sale for $40.  Radio Shack, Rotor/Controller and Cable, 3 years old, never used, have box/papers, like new. Cost: $70+  Sale for $50.  Scott Nolte, N6CUV 818-354-9724n



Year End Banquet

By Scott Nolte,

Please join us for the big JPL ARC Year End Banquet meeting.  This year it again will be held at Marie Callender’s in Pasadena, where we have a private dining room with good facilities for our program and speaker.  With a choice of entrees, and an excellent program planned, you won’t want to miss this event.

What:    JPL ARC Year-End Banquet meeting

When:  Thursday, December 9

               No-host Happy Hour at 6:00 PM, Dinner at 7:00

Where: Marie Callender’s Pasadena

               2300 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena, CA

               (626) 792-3109


Choice of entree:

               Beef Pot Roast

               Oven Roasted Turkey

               Includes soup or salad and non-alcoholic beverage

Cost:     $13.77 per person ($15.77 with pie) including tax & tip

Program: To be announced shortly.  It should prove of interest to both hams and families.  I believe anyone who attended last year’s banquet will agree that we have a fine location and that it was a very enjoyable event.  Make your plans now to attend.   n


Fill in the following form and mail to Scott Nolte at JPL Mail Stop 306-392, together with a check made out to Scott for $13.77 or $15.77 for each dinner.  Call Scott at 818-354-9724 to RSVP.



Number of guests:____________________

Check box for number of entree(s) desired:

Beef Pot Roast:__________

Oven Roasted Turkey:______


Vast Majority of Hams Not ULS-Ready

Via ARRL Letter Online, Volume 18, Number 46

Even though registration has been available for approximately two years now, most Amateur Radio licensees have yet to register with the FCC's Universal Licensing System.  The ULS Task Force reports that, as of mid-November, 682,212 amateurs still have not registered.  This figure includes individuals whose licenses have lapsed but remain in the two-year grace period.  The FCC recently said approximately 3% of US licensees had registered with the ULS. 

The FCC deployed the ULS for the Amateur Service on August 16, 1999.  Amateurs must be registered in the ULS in order to file applications with the FCC--including renewals, modifications, and vanity call sign requests. 

Meanwhile, the latest "good news/bad news" scenario from the ULS could go something like this: "Dear Amateur: The good news is that we have granted your requested Group C vanity call sign which you sought 10 weeks ago when you were a General class licensee.  The bad news is that when we granted your long-awaited vanity call, we also undid the Advanced and Extra class upgrades you accomplished while your vanity was pending.  So, congratulations! You're a General once again."

The ULS Task Force says it recently discovered that the bug occurs when several applications are pending (e.g., a vanity application and an upgrade application).  The FCC is attempting to straighten out the unintended downgrades and says it will have the operator class of affected licensees corrected within a week. 

FCC personnel are currently testing the processing for club, military recreation, and RACES applications and hopes to act on pending applications before the end of the month.  Up until now, those applications have been filed on paper and still must be manually keystroked into the ULS prior to processing. 

The ULS Task Force also wants amateur applicants to know that if they apply too early for license renewal, their applications will be dismissed.  A license renewal must be filed no sooner than within 90 days of expiration, even if coupled with a license modification.  This is only an issue for those filing paper applications; the electronic filing system will not let applicants file prematurely. 

To register for the ULS, visit and click on "TIN/Call Sign Registration".  Paper registration also is possible.  For more information, call toll-free 888-CALL FCC (225-5322). 

Amateur Restructuring Details Possible By Year's End

Via ARRL Letter Online, Volume 18, Number 45

Knowledgeable sources in Washington say the amateur license restructuring issue has moved to the front burner at the FCC, and a Report and Order could be released before the end of 1999.

The Amateur Radio community has been awaiting license restructuring -- known officially as the 1998 Biennial Regulatory Review of Part 97 (WT Docket 98-143)--for nearly one year now.  While no one has mentioned a hard-and-fast date to wrap up the long-awaited proceeding, reports from several sources suggest that the R&O draft is in its final stages and could be complete within a month or so. 

During a recent a visit to top FCC officials in Washington, League officials pressed again for early action on the license restructuring rulemaking.  They were assured that the issue was not stalled and that the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau was "working very actively" to move restructuring along. 

Whatever its final form--and no one has hinted at that--license restructuring poses significant implications for Amateur Radio and its future direction and growth.  On August 10, 1998, the FCC proposed to phase out the Novice and Technician Plus licenses, leaving just four amateur license classes in place--Technician, General, Advanced, and Extra.  The Commission also asked the amateur community to express its opinions on Morse code requirements for licensing and testing, but offered no specific recommendations. 

At its July 1998 meeting, the ARRL Board of Directors--attempting to get the jump on restructuring--issued its own plan to restyle Amateur Radio.  Among other details, the ARRL plan also calls for four license classes and for "refarming" Novice/Tech Plus subbands to provide additional spectrum for higher-class operators.  Under the League plan, the Technician license remains unchanged, and the General becomes the entry-level ticket to HF operation.  The ARRL proposed Morse code requirements of 5 WPM for General and 12 WPM for Advanced and Extra class. 

The restructuring debate generated more than 2200 comments to the FCC, many of them from individual amateurs.  Once the FCC approves the Report & Order, a Public Notice will be issued, and the actual R&O will be released probably within a few days.  n

Newsletter Deadline:

Friday, December 31 for the January issue of W6VIO Calling.  Your articles, ads, photos, diagrams, letters to the editor, or technical material should be submitted to the editor via email ( or regular mail to: Bill Wood, 31094 Hemlock Ave, Barstow, CA 92311.

Posted November 30, 1999