Permission to copy is granted provided that credit is given to “W6VIO Calling.”



Meeting Notice


Calendar of Events


Prez’ Mix


March Club Meetings


DX News


Field Day Approaches!


Club Betterment Opportunities


Classified Ads


Field Day 2001 Wants YOU!


2001 Field Day Member Input Form

Calendar of Events

April 7

[TASMA General Meeting, Walnut Library}

April 11

General Meeting, Noon - 238-543

April 21

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

April 14

Club Field Day Prep Work Party

April 25

Board Meeting, Noon - 233-305J

April 28

Club Field Day Prep Work Party

April 28

[TRW Swap meet, Redondo Beach]

May 5

Club Field Day Prep Work Party

May 5

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

May 9

General Meeting, Noon - 238-543

May 12

Club Field Day Prep Work Party

May 19

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

May 23

Board Meeting, Noon - 233-305J

May 26

Club Field Day Prep Work Party

May 26

[TRW Swap meet, Redondo Beach]

June 2

Club Field Day Prep Work Party

June 9

Club Field Day Prep Work Party

June 13

General Meeting, Noon - 238-543

June 22-24

2001 Field Day, Mount Gleason

Meeting Notice

By Christopher Carson, KE6ABQ

The April General Meeting of the JPL Amateur Radio Club will be held on Wednesday April 11th, 2001 in 238-543 at noon. The topic is TBD. Bring your lunch if you like.  The April Board Meeting of the JPL Amateur Radio Club will be held at noon on Wednesday April 25th, 2001 in 233-305J. Bring your lunch if you like.

Everyone is welcome to attend either of these meetings.    n

Prez’ Mix

By Bob Dengler, NO6B

Before I discuss club happenings, I want to remind everyone that there will be a TASMA general meeting held at the Walnut Library this coming Saturday, April 7th at 10:00 am.  Talk-in will be on 146.640 (-), PL-167.9.  Our club maintains two 2-meter repeaters; one on Table Mountain on 145.280 (-) and one here at the lab on 147.15 (+), both PL-131.8, so we have a significant interest in the band planning and coordination activities which TASMA conducts.  It would therefore be a good idea for our club to have a significant turnout at this meeting.  More details including directions to the meeting can be found on the TASMA web page at

At our last board meeting, W6VIO trustee and shack manager Bob Polansky N6ET gave a rundown on all the club station maintenance that has been performed over the last month.  This report took quite a while, as the list of items tended to be rather long.  I don’t know how he does it, but I’m glad Bob is able to devote as much effort as he does; our club station is one of the best in the west as a result.

But his work is far from finished, and he needs your support in order to, among other things, complete the transition of the club shack from the trailer we currently occupy to a permanent building nearby.  In addition to gaining a bit more space and solving the problem of what to do when the trailer floor rots through, this new facility features ¾ inch thick lead wall shielding, which will help protect the station operators following the nuclear air blast that will deposit radioactive fallout around the building, not to mention the bulk of the LA basin.

Our club station is part of our emergency communications infrastructure that the lab supports via yearly grants.  We owe it to the lab to make sure that its investment in us is well spent by keeping our club communications facilities in good working order and available for use on a moment’s notice in the event a real disaster strikes the lab.  Please read Bob’s column regarding this subject and volunteer for one or more of the upcoming work parties that he’s scheduled over the new few months.  73    n

March Meetings

By Jonathan Cameron, KF6RTA

General Meeting, March 14

Those present included Chris Carson (KE6ABQ), Bob Dengler (NO6B), Warren Dowler (KE6LEA), Randy Hammock (KC6HUR), Jay Holladay (W6EJJ), Dayton Jones (K6DJ), Walt Mushagian (K6DNS), Jerry Person (KK6TS), Bob Polansky (N6ET), Chuck Sarture (KG6NF), Mark Schaefer (WB6CIA), Rob Sweet (KG6DKW), Marty Woll (N6VI), and Jonathan Cameron (KF6RTA).   Chris Carson called the meeting to order at 12:10pm.  A quorum was present.

Randy Hammock described some of the amateur radio activities at the LA marathon.   The APRS worked well for most units, but a few of the new units that had a difficult time getting the initial lock.

Walt Mushagian reported that the Emergency drill for FEMA went pretty well.  The club now owns a 50-foot mast with pneumatic raising capability.   Unfortunately, we don’t own the necessary pump to use it.

Bob Polansky is making progress in designing the new shack with assistance from Chris Carson, Jay Holladay, and Courtney Duncan (N5BF).  Most of the necessary hardware is in hand.  Bob is planning several work parties to get the equipment transferred and installed.

At this point, our speaker Marty Woll (N6VI) was introduced.   Marty did some analysis of the last field day with the goal of improving our performance in the upcoming field day (June 23-24, 2001).   He shared several suggestions with us.  Basically, he wants to increase operator participation.   We should support the novice/tech tent.   For each band, we should try to make voice, CW, and digital mode contacts (recall that the later two modes count double).   Marty would like to see a dedicated 50m station.   He suggested that a packet station would also be helpful.  To do all this, we will probably need additional antenna masts.   His overall goal is to make it easy to get on the air!

Bob Polansky seconded Marty’s call to get everyone involved and thanked Marty for his presentation.

Board of Directors Meeting, March 28

Those present included Eric Archer (N6CV, via phone), Jonathan Cameron (KF6RTA), Bob Dengler (NO6B), Walt Mushagian (K6DNS), Bob Polansky (N6ET), and Bill Wood (W6FXJ, via phone).   A quorum was present.

Bob Polansky reported on the progress of setting up the new shack and cleaning out the previous site.   He also indicated that there was inadequate support for the work parties that he has arranged to help in the process of setting up our new shack.  He encouraged everyone to help out!  Four more work parties are planned.   Please jump in and participate!

Walt Mushagian told us that the sale of excess club equipment is going well.  Most of the equipment has been sold. One item is left: a 10 GHz radar unit.

The meeting was adjourned early at approximately 12:45 due to previous commitments of several board members.    n

DX News

By Bob Polansky, N6ET

Another month has gone by and it took only about two days!  That’s when I recall putting together my last DX NEWS article.  Suffice it to say that the solar flux has been excitingly high due to a huge event on the surface of “ole sol” and the available DX on 160 through 6 meters has been substantial. 

The W6VIO shack is seeing more and more use by our DX-hungry Club members.  Over 100 QSL cards have been sent out through the ARRL Outgoing QSL Bureau to bring up our 80 and 40 meter “confirmed entities” totals in preparation for receiving the 5-Band DXCC Award.  Lots of 160 meter entities are also in the log and QSL’s are trickling in for these as I write.  Now for the news:

AGALEGA – Look for a large group of operators to put 3B6 on the air from 5 to19 May.  No information yet on callsign or frequencies.  Hopefully, I’ll get more information by next month’s issue of W6VIO Calling. This operation should create heavy pileups.

ASCENSION ISLAND – My old friend ZD8Z plans to be on this remote Atlantic island from 7 through 17 May.  He promises to be active on 160 meters in addition to his normal all band, all mode operations.  His antenna systems permit him to be worked even when the bands are closed!

CHESTERFIELD ISLAND – TX0C will become the second operation from this new Pacific Island entity from 27 April through 2 May.  Don’t miss this one.

CHRISTMAS ISLAND – VK9KXP PUTS Christmas Island on the air from 31 March through 6 April.  All band operation is planned, but according to my not-to-precise notes this operation may be only CW.  Specific frequencies are published in The Weekly DX and can be seen by visiting our shack and looking at the middle of the north wall.

EAST TIMOR – 4W/VK2QF has returned to this Asian trouble spot and promises activity, primarily on the low bands through 5 April.  Work him fast before he departs for the safety of Australia.

FALKLANDS – Look for many “GM” hams to mount an operation from here from 23 April through 8 May.  Operation from 160M through 10 meters is planned.

MALPELO – Tow operations from this rare entity are planned.  The first is by HK0/HK3JHH and it will take place from 7 April through 7 May.  The second is by a team consisting of HK5MQZ and HK5QGX.  It will take place from 10 April through 21 April. 

MELLISH REEF – VK9ML is the callsign to be used by this relatively short DXpedition from 21 through 24 April.  W6VIO needs this for an all-time new one.

TEMOTU – H40RW is active through 11 April from this relatively new Pacific entity.  Again, look at the notes on the wall of the W6VIO shack for frequencies.

I hope this is enough to whet your DX appetites.  I certainly plan to participate in the pileups.  Enjoy!   n

Field Day Approaches!

By Bob Polansky, N6ET

Field Day this year takes place the weekend of 22 - 24 June.  This year, we will have more than enough transmitters for all who wish to operate.  Put the weekend aside and plan on joining in the fun. 

As usual, we need support from the Club members in a variety of areas from food procurement, cooking, planning site layout, operations band planning, equipment transporting, and setting up tents, antennas, and rigs.  Give me a call to let me know how you would like to help. 

Elsewhere in W6VIO Calling, you will find a sign-up sheet to assist us in the planning effort.  Make sure you complete the sheet and sent it to me via Email or Snail Mail.

Don’t miss the fun.  Mark your calendars and plan now to attend and enjoy the great outdoors with your fellow Club members and friends.    n

JPL ARC Club Betterment Opportunities

By Bob Polansky, N6ET

Field Day is fast approaching and we are in dire need of help in preparing for this year’s event.  On top of this, our Club is on notice to make the physical appearance of its assets at JPL more appealing to the eye (it’s clean up time).  In addition, we are in the process of planning the move of the W6VIO shack to a permanent building just to the north of our current HF Ops trailer.

In order to address all these needs, I’ve laid out an Action Plan to get us through Field Day and a bit beyond.  The Plan requires lots of help from the Club membership. 

I need to hear from you if you are able to help us with the activities that need to take place, especially before Field Day.  I am able to put together work parties on the following PRE-Field Day dates:  4/14, 4/28, 5/5, 5/12, 5/26, 6/2, and 6/9. 

Please let me know which dates you can provide help on.  If you wish to lead one or more of the efforts, that help would be greatly appreciated.  My phone number is 354 4940.  Leave a Voicemail or drop me an Email if you can help. Let me know which dates work for you. 

The Action Plan is shown below with a few dates already hard scheduled and some work already completed:

24 March

Mesa work




Replace galled TH7DX to mast hardware




Replace U-bolts on 40M beam




Design new mast extension to Sommers tower




Design pressure source to raise new pneumatic tower




Checkout Field Day 2.2 kw generator




Survey Rohn-25 tower for removal




Dispose of long table




Clean area around W6VIO shack



Start 30 March

Clean up inside of W6VIO shack



Dispose of obsolete paperwork



Identify hardware to be auctioned off



Dispose of unwanted hardware



Install Powerpole plugs on all 12V (B180 too)



Repair Dentron amplifier.



31 March

Disassemble Guard Shack tower/antennas



Surplus unneeded antennas



Move Rohn 25 to CIT



Move 50” tower sections to CIT



Move stainless tower sections to CIT




Fix DX packet problems.


Move packet antenna to stair top


Coordinate with K6EXO


Build/tune 4 element 10M beam


Build/tune R7000


Create Cheli hardware surplus shipment



Radar carcass



R390 receiver



Unneeded keyboards



Unneeded CRTs



16 June

Prepare for Field Day

Before Field Day


Test pneumatic tower raiser



Tag hardware to be taken



After Field Day

Prepare for surplus equipment auction



Identify/list hardware to be auctioned



Set recommended low bids



Prepare and conduct auction




A3WS tower work



Prepare temporary mast



Remove rotor



Replace A3WS bent hardware



Install temporary mast



Temporarily reinstall A3WS


         Reinstall repaired rotor on A3WS tower


         Install new W6VIO antenna interface



Cement 3 posts for antenna switches/hard-line terminations



Install 2 hard-line switches



Extend 2 hard-lines to hilltop



Create hard-line interface from A3WS tower to R7000



Create pressure interfaces to all hard-lines




Mesa work



Install extension to Sommers tower



Install pulley system to top of tower



Move 160M Inverted Vee and 80M loop to pulley system



Tune both antennas


Move hard-line terminations to new shack antenna post



Install pressure regulator and connect into JPL pressure source


Prepare move to new shack

My thanks go to Mike Tope and Warren Dowler for helping me to accomplish the large volume of work completed on March 24 for the Club.    n

Classified Section


Reliable Person to receive about 40 copies of “W6VIO Calling” each month to address and mail to retired and other off-lab club members.  Job involves applying club supplied adhesive address labels and postage stamps.  Takes only 30 minutes each a month.  Contact Bill Wood, W6FXJ, at 760-256-5529 or for details.

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:

Radio Shack (Realistic) PRO-2021 Scanner.  200 Channels.  30-512 MHz.  AC powered Desktop Scanner.  Excellent condition. $75.00 Contact Bill Westphal WB6YPF at 213-787-9991 or

Uniden Bearcat BC-760XLT Scanner.  100 Channels.  Covers 800 MHz band.  Preprogrammed police, fire, marine, weather.  12 VDC powered Desktop or Mobile.  Comes with AC-DC Converter, Telescopic whip antenna, Suction cup window antenna and mobile mounting hardware.  Excellent condition $100.00 Contact Bill Westphal WB6YPF at 213-787-9991 or

Cushcraft ARX2B Ringo Ranger II 2 Meter antenna.  Good condition.  $35.00Contact Bill Westphal WB6YPF at 213-787-9991 or

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

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 818-354-9724    n

JPL Field Day 2001 Wants YOU!

By Bob Polansky, N6ET

W6VIO has a new theme for this year’s ARRL Field Day: broader participation!

Mark your calendars for June 22 – 24.  We want you to come along, not stay home.  We want you to operate, not just watch. 

To make this happen, the combined JPL and CITARC entry this year will increase the number of transmitters in our entry category to provide more dedicated VHF / UHF stations and modes and an additional HF station for those who prefer to operate at a less frenetic pace.  We will take advantage of the new demonstration-mode bonuses by trying out PSK-31, APRS and maybe a portable packet node. 

The Boy Scouts will again join us to put a satellite station on the air.  By mining the heavily populated local VHF and UHF bands more thoroughly we will provide much more operating time for the many Technician licensees in the club while boosting our QSO totals and our resulting score. 

Please use the response sheet below to tell us what your Field Day operating interests are, what you might be able to bring, and how you might like to help.  Don’t like to climb towers?  That’s ok, there are lots of ways to pitch in; let’s find one to suit you. 

We’ll need more laptops, more rigs, more antennas and more masts / towers.  Got a van or camper that can house a station?  Great!  Have a spare vhf beam or push-up mast tucked away in the garage?  We may be able to use it.  The more bands we can get on, the more fun we can have.  If you have weak-signal UHF or microwave gear, we can put it on the air! 

Several members have been busy designing and building new toys to enhance the set-up, operation and teardown of our Field Day stations.  It will be more fun than ever, so be a part of it!  Just send the questionnaire to Bob Polansky within the next few weeks so we can start planning your Field Day.


JPL / CITARC 2001 Field Day Member Input Form

(Please Fill Out and Return to Bob Polansky)

Name ___________________  Call _________  License Class ____________

Yes, I can join the fun on:   ___ Fri. 6/22 (set-up)     ___Sat. 6/23      ___Sun. 6/24
I’m unable to attend ___ (but I can provide gear or help prepare as indicated below)
My operating preferences are:  ___ HF high-rate SSB    ___ HF casual SSB
___ HF high-rate CW    ___HF casual CW    ___ RTTY    ___ VHF high-rate FM / SSB
___ VHF casual    ___ VHF weak-signal SSB / CW    ___ Microwave bands
___ VHF packet    ___ Satellite    ___PSK-31    ___ Other _______________________
I can make the following available if needed:
HF rig _____________        Power supply _____________    Laptop _______________
VHF / UHF FM rig(s) (specify bands)  _______________________________________
VHF / UHF SSB/CW rig___________________  Microwave gear__________________
Accessories (preamps, amps, meters, lights, ac strips, etc.) ______________________
Specialty-mode (PSK31, APRS, packet node, ATV, etc.) ________________________
Tower sections, masts ___________________________________________________
HF antennas __________________________  HF tuner ________________________
VHF / UHF / microwave antennas __________________________________________
Rotors (for VHF, Satellite), hardline _________________________________________
Vehicle-based op. position______________________  Tow vehicle ________________
Filters / cavities ____________________Other ________________________________
I can help before Field Day to:  ___ build / test filters, interface cables, etc.)
___ machine parts    ___ weld or heliarc    ___install software / prepare laptops
___ pre-assemble antennas    ___ load vehicles    ___ Other _______________
I can help during Field Day to:  ___ assemble antennas on the ground    ___ climb
___ pitch tents    ___ raise towers & masts    ___ set up stations    ___ set up network
___ prepare food    ___ maintain generator    ___ escort visitors / give “tours”
___ Other ________________________________________________________

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