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Calendar of Events

Meeting Notice

Prez’ Mix

May Club Meetings

DX News

New W6VIO Shack

Classified Ads

Field Day 2001

2001 Field Day Member Input Form

Calendar of Events

June 8-10

[Mojave “Death” Race 250+, Primm, Nevada]

June 9

Club Field Day Prep Work Party

June 13

General Meeting, Noon - 238-543

June 22-24

2001 Field Day, Mount Gleason

July 7

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

July 11

General Meeting, Noon - 238-543

July 21

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

July  25

Board Meeting, Noon - 233-305J

July 28

[TRW Swap meet, Redondo Beach]

August 4

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

August 8

General Meeting, Noon - 238-543

August 18

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

August 22

Board Meeting, Noon - 233-305J

August 25

[TRW Swap meet, Redondo Beach]

Meeting Notice

By Christopher Carson, KE6ABQ

The June General Meeting will be held June 13th at noon in 238-543. Field Day and the renovation status of the New Shack at Bldg. 173 are on the agenda.

If you haven’t signed up yet for Field Day activities, don’t forget to let Bob Polansky know.  Plenty of fun things, a few dull and bor­ing things, and a couple of yucky things need to be done to make Field Day a success.  Lend a hand, a rig, an opinion, a couple of minutes or a day – whatever you have – and who knows, you might even LIKE IT!  Try your hand at a new operating mode, use some gear you might not have tried, compare notes and ideas.  Last year’s effort created some new ham’s and renewed some old friend­ships.  This year . . . ?

The June JPLARC Board Meeting will be held June 27th in 233-305J. Everyone is welcome to attend – bring your lunch if you want.    n

Prez’ Mix

By Bob Dengler, NO6B

Well here I am again writing this column at the last minute.  Why do I keep putting this off to the last minute?

The timing of this year’s JPL open house was good for me, as I was able to take my father-in-law to JPL and show him what we do here.  Needless to say he was quite impressed.  I also got to show some other ham friends of mine our HF shack.  To demonstrate our capability I fired up one of the FT-1000s and dialed up a freq. (I think it was on 20 meters) that was being repeatedly displayed on the DX packet cluster computer screen.  I heard several stations calling, then the DX station.  As soon as he finished his contact, I keyed up and gave my call sign once.  He immediately answered - no amplifier needed!  I never knew working DX could be so easy.

I then tried some 10-meter FM.  This is where I found a major flaw in the FT-1000.  It does have a CTCSS encoder, but the frequency is FIXED at 88.5 Hz!  This makes it practically useless for 10 meter FM operation.  I will have to ring Yaesu sometime and express my displeasure with their $4000 radio.

I’ve been checking out 6 meters most Fridays during lunch­time (12:30-1:00) up in our 180-R6 shack.  Last Friday there was a good opening into Colorado.  If you haven’t tried our 6-meter station you’re missing out.  Remember, only Technician class (no code) or higher license is required to operate 6 me­ters.  Contact me at 4-9620 or Eric Archer at 4-7350 if you haven’t been up to the 180-R6 shack before so we can give you instructions on how to access the room and use the sta­tion.

I hope you are all planning to attend the club’s Field Day event up on Mt. Gleason, even if for just part of one day.  Bob Polansky has put an extra effort this year to make sure that it will be more fun for everyone.  Anyone that wants to operate will get all the time that he or she wishes.  I will even be on hand Friday afternoon to train anyone that wants to operate the VHF/UHF FM station.  This is an important position to fill, as we have made around 500 contacts with this station in the past.  I will not be available on Saturday, so we need a capable staff to operate that position this year.

If you’ve NEVER operated FD before, then THIS is the year for you!  No experience?  No problem!  We’ll teach you eve­rything you need to know to operate our FD stations.  Contact Bob via e-mail or at 4-4940 for more info.  73    n

May Meetings

By Jonathan Cameron, KF6RTA

General Meeting, May 9

The meeting was cancelled due to lack of attendees.

Board of Directors Meeting, May 23

The board of directors meeting was not held.    n

DX News

By Bob Polansky, N6ET

The lion’s share of my time this month has been taken up with Field Day preparations; however, the “DX spot” population continues to show that we are in the vicinity of the sunspot maximum.  Enjoy it while it’s here!  I’ve added lots of new band-entities to my life-long totals over the last several months thanks to the WARC band activities of many in the DX community. 

Six meters is a lot of fun, but propagation seems to change on a minute-by-minute basis, making it necessary to be in close proximity to one’s rig when the band opens.  Our six meter station on the top of B180 has almost a full page of contacts logged, many with DX stations.  Drop by and add your activ­ity to the log. 

The HF stations have also been getting quite a workout with lots of help surfacing from the DX packet systems.  In process also is a PSK-31 capability, which is expected to get its inau­gural workout at this year’s Field Day (see other articles in this month’s “W6VIO Calling”). 

Now for a few DX-specifics thanks to “The Weekly DX” publication:

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC - TL8DV is active from 10 to 20 meters using low power and wire antennas.  A linear and a beam will add “dB’s” to Dave’s signals later this sum­mer.  He plans to be active for the next two years.

CHESTERFIELD ISLANDS - September this year is the “rough” target for the next full-blown DXpedition to this rela­tively new DX entity.  An all-band, all mode operation is planned with up to five stations creating pileups simultane­ously.  More on this one as plans firm up.

CRETE - I2WIJ plans activity from 23 through 29 July, both CW and SSB, mostly on 17 and 12 meters.  Look for him on CW during the 28/29 July IOTA CW Contest.  No call yet specified.

LAOS - Not sure of the call sign, but JA2EZD has applied for an XW license and plans to be active now through 25 June (in the past, he used the call XW2A).  Hiro prefers 10 through 40 meters, both CW and SSB.  More details to come.

MALAWI - June 6 through June 19 is the plan for “airing” 7Q by a contingent of JA operators.  One of them, using the call 7Q7YL, plans to stay active from Malawi for the next two years.

MARKET REEF - Look for a group populated by OH and JA operators to put Market Reef on the air from 12 through 16 July.  160 through 6 meter all mode activity is planned using the OJ0U call and OJ0/home calls of the individual operators.  See the posting on the W6VIO shack wall dated 28 May for details.

Only half way through the alphabet and I’ve run out of news.  Listen for yourselves and enjoy!   n

New W6VIO Ham Shack

By Bob Polansky, N6ET

Just a quick note:  Building 173, located about 15 feet north of the current W6VIO operations trailer, has been made available to our Club as its new ham shack.  The building needs some refurbishing, which is being planned and estimated. 

Our goal is to have the building put into shape and to move our operations into it within the next year.  There will be a number of work parties needed to make this all come together.  I hope we can count on the Club members to participate and make this new shack a real showplace.  There will be more on this subject as things progress.    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:

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

Field Day, 2001

By Jay Holladay, W6EJJ and Bob Polansky, N6ET

It’s Field Day time again, and this year’s effort will have a new look. Our emphasis will be on giving everyone a chance to operate, and our entry will be in Class 5A. There will be plenty of rigs and antennas to go around, and we can take maximum advantage of avail­able band openings.

The dates for 2001 are June 22-24, and the location is our usual site at Mount Gleason, where we will again join forces with the Caltech Amateur Radio Club.  HF conditions con­tinue to be ex­cellent, 10-meters should be a lot of fun at the Novice/Technician HF station, and there will be plenty of VHF/UHF activity. We are hoping for some interesting 6-me­ter action as well. So, come on up and give it a try. And please remember to bring one of your own QSL cards for our display board. 

If you do not feel up to tackling all the FD QRM, please come up and help with setup, computer logging, or what have you.  All hams at JPL and Caltech and their families and friends are invited to visit us at the Field Day site.

As usual, we will use computers and the program CT to log our Field Day QSO’s.  CT practice sessions will be held dur­ing June.  Call Jay Holladay at 354-7758 for more informa­tion, or watch for an announcement on the kilroy mail for­warder.

How You Can Take Part:

Please fill out the sign-up sheet on page 5 of this newsletter and return it to Bob Polansky.  Keep the rest of this issue and bring it with you to Field Day.  Even if you do not return the sign-up sheet, please feel free to visit us at Mt. Gleason.

Come to the JPL ARC Meeting on Wednesday, June 13 (238-543 at Noon) to hear more detail on Field Day planning and ask any questions you may have about the operation.  We are also planning a work party for June 9 to check out equipment and get things ready to move up the hill.  Also, learn about the training sessions mentioned above.  The latest Field Day plan­ning information will be disseminated via the Club’s e-mail list and via the Monday net on the W6JPL repeater.

Field Day activities will kick off on Friday morning, June 22.  The hard-core FD types will take vacation that Friday to assist with the logistics and transportation chores.  We will meet at 8:00 AM at the ham shack trailer by the East Gate to load all of the gear for the trip up the mountain.  Once everything is loaded we will caravan to Mt. Gleason and begin setting up.  Lunch and dinner will be served on Friday while we erect tents and antennas, then set up and test all of the rigs. 

The Field Day contest starts at 11 AM local (1800 UTC) Sat­urday and ends at the same time on Sunday.  Robb Frederick­son will be in charge of the kitchen this year and he will con­tinue the tradition of fine meals while we are on the mountain. The Sat­urday evening dinner is always a special event. After the con­test is over we will have lunch and disas­semble every­thing, leaving Mt. Gleason as we found it.  Then it’s back to JPL to return the Club equipment and home for a well-de­served shower and nap.

What To Bring to Field Day:

Even if you only plan to visit for the afternoon, it is wise to be prepared for anything.  You may enjoy Field Day so much you will want to spend the night.  To get to Mt. Gleason, see the map and directions on the next page.  The road is paved all the way except for the short bypass around the correctional facil­ity and any car can make it to the top.

Meals will be provided by the Club-suggested donation is $3 per person per meal to help defray expenses.  You are respon­sible for your own place to sleep and enough warm clothing to stay comfortable during the cold nights (Mt. Gleason is at 6532 ft).  Be prepared for weather like the Sahara Desert dur­ing the day and the Arctic at night, along with gale force winds, and you should be OK.  Seriously, light thermal un­derwear and light gloves are often needed if you are operating in the wee hours of Sunday morning.

The following is a suggested checklist for your personal FD preparations: 

Wide-brimmed hat

Long-sleeved shirt

Mosquito repellent

Toothbrush & paste

2 gallons of water per person

Favorite snack food

Sleeping bag

First-aid Kit

Heavy jacket


Thermal underwear


Several pairs of socks





220 MHz Handy-talkie




Lip balm




AM/FM Radio (for earthquake report, etc.)

Don’t forget any needed medications or aspirin and vitamins.  If you do spend the night, it is highly recommended that you bring a tent or camper.  The view is well worth bringing cam­era and binoculars. 

As far as Amateur Radio gear is concerned, the Clubs will furnish rigs (with some additional loans from the members).  We can always use a spare HF or VHF rig as backup, so bring one along if it’s convenient.  Don’t forget the rig-compatible power supply and cables.  Bring whatever specialty operating items you wish.  If you have a favorite keyer, headset, or boom mike, please bring it along. 

All the HF rigs will use 8-pin mike connector wired for Ken­wood.  (We could really use a digital voice “keyer” if anyone has one!)  Also a small tool kit, extra table, antenna wire, bat­tery-operated clock, spare batteries of all types, etc., always seem to come in handy. 

In short, anything you might need to be self-sufficient and stay operational under emergency conditions will probably be use­ful at Field Day.  In fact, that’s what the exercise is supposed to be all about.  CU at FD!

Directions to Mount Gleason Field Day Site: 

Take the Foothill Freeway (210) to La Canada.  Exit at Ange­les Crest Highway/Route 2.  Go north 9.1 miles on Route 2 up into the San Gabriel Mts.  Turn left at the junction with An­geles Forest Highway (N3).  Continue 3.8 miles on Angeles Forest Highway past Big Tujunga Junction.  Go another 5.9 miles through the tunnel, past Hidden Springs to the Monte Cristo Campground.

Continue another 4.9 miles on Angeles Forest Highway to the Mill Creek Campground at the Mill Creek Summit.  Turn left on Mt. Gleason Road.  (The Mill Creek Campground will be on the right.)  Continue 6.2 miles on Mt. Gleason Road until you reach the Mount Gleason Conservation Camp. 

Take dirt road bypass left of the Correction Facility; continue 2.5 miles.  Keep to the right at Y-junction just after Micro­wave Station.  When you reach the locked gate, call on Sim­plex for admission.  The road will end at the Summit and our FD site.  Do not block the road at the far end of the Mt. Glea­son operating site by parking on it.  Watch out for kids, an­tenna wires, and loose hams

Alternate Route: 

210 Freeway to Interstate 5; North to 14 Freeway; Exit at An­geles Forest Highway take Angeles Forest (N3) South, turn right on Mt. Gleason Road.   

Bob’s Final Word:

Field Day is right around the corner.  Most of the Club mem­bers have responded as to their participation in this year’s event.  I’ve not yet heard from a few.  If you have not re­sponded yet to me, please do so.  I want to make sure there are enough rigs, antennas, and food to satisfy everyone’s desires. 

This year we plan on operating in Class 5A for the first time.  There will be more than enough stations to keep everyone active.  Don’t forget to bring one of your QSL’s so we can create a bulletin board showing all the participants. 

We plan on fielding several demonstration stations.  Randy will bring along his APRS station, which was very popular last year.  With the help of Bill Weber, I have been putting to­gether a station capable of operating the new PSK-31 and MFSK-16 digital modes.  The instructions looked formidable to start with, but in reality it’s coming together quite well.  We can become proficient together at Field Day.

Lots of innovations will enable us to set up Field Day City much easier this year.  Marty Woll took notes last year on how to make things run more smoothly.  Warren Dowler has re­duced many of Marty’s notes to practice.  We have several new, easily erected towers including one that is pneumatically erected.  The antennas will virtually raise themselves! 

Randy Hammock has fitted all our Field Day rigs and 12 volt power supplies with Power Pole connectors permitting more flexibility with regard to powering the rigs from our power supplies.  The JPL Emergency Coordinator has procured a number of new Eureka tents that are available for our use this year, just so they are returned clean and in good condition.  This will save the Club substantial dollars.

Enough for now.  Plan on spending the weekend above the LA basin and enjoy the clean air and the view.  You wont be dis­appointed.  Don’t forget your wide-brimmed hat for the sunny days and your long johns for the cool nights.  .   n


Newsletter Deadline:

Friday, June 29 for the July 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.

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Posted June 6, 2001