Volume 29, Number 4 April 1999
Transmission Lines, Smith Charts, and Matching
There are times in every radio amateur's life when a working knowledge
of transmission lines and matching techniques is indispensable. Yet, this
subject remains a mystery to many hams because of its mathematical nature.
The Smith chart offers a means to understand and appreciate the beauty
of transmission line theory without mathematics. Moreover, the design of
matching networks using stubs and lumped elements can be formulated as
a board game in which different kinds of "men" make different moves. This
makes it possible to enjoy a quiet evening of quality time with one's significant
other, playing a board game that, by good fortune, yields the design for
a triple stub matching network for your 40 meter antenna. Steve will use
an antenna analyzer to show how to analyze an antenna and design a matching
network on the Smith Chart. Line losses will be explained, and some common
myths about VSWR will be dispelled.
Steve Stearns, KF6OIK, got his start in electronics when his father
gave him a Heathkit short-wave receiver as a Christmas present in 1964.
He quickly got his novice ticket and built more Heathkits. He advanced
to a commercial 1st class radiotelephone license and took a thirty year
leave of absence from amateur radio, during which time he obtained degrees
in electrical engineering from Cal State University, USC, and Stanford.
Today, Steve works as Chief Technologist for TRW Firestorm Wireless Communication
Products in Sunnyvale. He leads a group that develops advanced signal processing
technology to improve radio reception by mitigating or eliminating cochannel
and adjacent channel interference. Steve's technology is being applied
in UHF mobile and cellular communication systems.
It looks like there will be an antenna party again this year. Andy AC6GN
has agreed to head this up on May 15th. See page 5 for details.
It has been almost a year and Field Day is upon us again. Mark your
calendars now for the weekend of June 25 - 27. You might as well mark the
third Friday, the 18th, for the club meeting at the same time.
Livermore Swap Meet - 1st Sunday of each month at Las Positas College
in Livermore, 7:00 AM to noon, all year. Talk in 147.045 from the west,
145.35 from the east. Contact Noel Anklam, KC6QZK, (510) 447-3857 eves.
Foothill Flea Market - 2nd Saturday of each month from March to October
at Foothill College, Los Altos Hills. FARS NET on 145.23 repeater Thursday
nights at 8 PM.
President: Jack Eddy WA6YJR
Treasurer: Shel Edelman, N6RD
Secretary: Martin Liberman, KD6WJW
Training Officer: Paul Zander AA6PZ
Radio Officer: Mikel Lechner KN6QI
Newsletter: David Wilkes KD6WRG
Board members: Dirk Thiele KE6ZUY, Dick Baldwinson N6ATD; Hans Neumann
KE6TGA; Martin Libeman KD6WJW; Herb KF6BKL; Howard Califf KE6PWH, Arv Hamer
WA6UUT; Larry Moore KM6IU.
K6YA Station Trustee: Stan Kuhl, K6MA
FARS Web Page: www.fars.k6ya.org
FARS announcement mailing list is moderated, so you cannot reply directly
to the list. To subscribe, send the word "subscribe" to: firstname.lastname@example.org;
For help, send the word "help" to email@example.com; For human assistance,
email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The FARS Relay is the official monthly newsletter of the Foothills
Amateur Radio Society Meetings are held at 7 PM on the fourth Friday of
each month except January (Winter Banquet); and 3rd Friday in June, Nov.
& Dec. Annual membership $20; family $25. Visitors are always welcome!
Directions on the back page. Talk-in: W6APZ (145.23-, 100Hz) or W6ASH repeater
(145.27 or 224.36). Contributions to the newsletter from members, family,
and guests are earnestly solicited! Contributions subject to editing and/or
compression. ASCII files via packet, Internet or diskettes preferred; but
all readable forms welcome. Here are the various ways to reach the editor:
Internet: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
VHF voice: KD6WRG on W6APZ, 145.23- (100Hz PL) FARS net Thursdays 8
PM; Various other times. Mail: 1093 Kelly Drive San Jose CA 95129-3222
Voice: 408-996-1613 (Until 9 PM); Fax: 408-725-1036
Eyeball: at FARS meetings.
- DeLong Consulting -
Internet - Firewalls - E-Mail - UNIX
Bridging the gap - Your net -> Internet
3251 Firth Way, San Jose, CA 95121
408-322-3741 - Fax: 408-532-9362
I have been reading the back issues of the relay back to the beginning
of EMARC and I will be compiling the history of EMARC/FARS. I will include
with the relay each month some of the interesting things.
The first relay was put out in March of 1973. The members nominated
for officers at the second meeting were President Fred Barry K6RTU, Vice
President Fred Canham K6YT, Secretary Jack Eddy WA6YJR, Treasurer Sy Stein
WA6ROM, Radio officer Ross Forbes WB6GFT, Activities Manager Jerry Starkey
WA6LIJ and the board of directors were Bill Itel W6VF, Bob Smithwick W6JZU,
and Thorn Mayes W6AX. These were the Hams that guided
the club through the first year which was very successful.
It is time for everyone to get into the spirit of field day and I hope
each of you will find some time to help out. We are in need of someone
to head up the committee for the picnic on Saturday night.
My thanks to those of you who are always ready to lend a hand.
Special thanks and "well-done!" are due Hans Neumann, KE6TGA, for fixing
and improving the club station's CW paddle. The job was done up to Hans'
usual very high standards of workmanship.
14 Years Industry Experience
Individuals, Trusts, Retirement Plans
No-Load Mutual Funds
Personal Account Statements
Peter W. Johnson, Jr., PFP (KN6MO)
Registered Investment Advisor
Silicon Valley Public Access Link, a non-profit organization, is shifting
its emphasis to service non-profit organizations in addition to individual
accounts. Non-profits can have a low cost Internet presence, email discussion
groups, and can save money by sending out their newsletters by email. For
all accounts, SV-PAL now has graphical browser capability available. As
a subscriber to SV-PAL myself, I want to tell you it is a pleasure to have
a home page without all those damn ads popping up all the time. See me
or Dennis Paull for details.
SIX METER REPEATERS
Andy VE3FZK passed along the following from Dennis Freeman K6YLN.
Freeman, Dennis wrote: I notice on the S.H.A.R.K.K.
list a large number of repeaters at 51.82 have been recently added. Are
these linked? Is there some group or club a person could join to help keep
these repeaters going? Is there some general purpose in mind for these
repeaters? They are listed as open, seems as though someone has gone to
a lot of expense and a lot of work.
I have a licensed friend with licensed children in college in Santa
Barbara who would like to be able to communicate with them. If these repeaters
are all linked, will that mean the friend will be able to do this?
I live near Pescadero, California, (between Santa Cruz and San Francisco),
I was able to hear the repeater(s) until I got about 10 miles south of
Half Moon Bay. I was using a 5-watt ICOM T8A. Perhaps with a better antenna/more
power, I could reach either Skyline, San Jose or Santa Cruz from home,
but can't with the T8A and it's whip.
To: Freeman, Dennis
Subject: Re: 6 meter repeaters
The repeaters are not yet linked. This is our Y2K project. We have some
of the link radios (15 of the 27 required) installed but have not done
the final adjustments. The Bay Area sites will be linked first -followed
by the Central Valley -and then Central Coast.
The ultimate configuration will be all receivers operating on 51.32
MHz and voting. The transmitters will operate on 4 different frequencies.
This way, the users will simply transmit of 51.32, and select up to 4 receive
frequencies. Ultimately, you'll just need 4 memories in your radio.
CERT is the "Communication Emergency Response Team". It is a group of
hams whose charter is to provide emergency communication in cases where
no other communication medium is available. All sites have emergency power
(generators). There are no dues. Yes, I have gone to a lot of expense and
work to make this happen. It was a project that I've wanted to do for a
while. I had already built 4 UHF repeaters and 1 6 meter repeater and envisioned
a multi-site 6 meter system since it hadn't been done on such a magnitude.
I mostly listen. The benefit I get out of the project is providing a good,
open 6 meter repeater system to the amateur community and having a network
to develop. I can hardly wait to get the voting and linking system together.
It is one big experiment!
The group was formed by me 3 years ago and consists mostly of GTE employees.
GTE sponsors the site space, and Paul KD6EUJ and I built all 14 repeaters.
The repeaters are modified GE MASTR II radios.
You will definitely need a better antenna than the portable antenna.
You'll also notice that in-building penetration is poor. The benefit is
better long-distance highway coverage (with a mobile) and not too much
activity. 6 meters is definitely a challenge.
Your friends are welcome to use the repeaters. The one on Santa Ynez
should cover Santa Barbara real well. The "Skyline" repeater is at Skylawn
Cemetery. When they are linked (next year) they'll work well.
73, John WM6R
1999 Flea Market a Success
It had us worried, but our flea market on March 13 was a very good one.
Although the rain held off and opened a window for us, the morning started
out gray and cold, most of the sellers came in later than usual, and the
usually eager, first-of-the-season crowd of buyers arrived in force later
still. But all?s well that ends well, as the bard said, and this FARS market
ended up very well indeed-among the best, possibly the best, of the seven
markets I have run for the club. We sold exactly 150 spaces, a high figure
and the most for us (and, I believe, the other clubs) since the 1997 season.
None of this would have been possible without the help of a number of
fellow club members. I must explain, however, that buying the supplies
is easy, getting a few people to help carry them to the market is maybe
only just a little bit harder, and running the market on market day is
straightforward enough. The really frustrating, difficult, and most worrisome
part of running a market is that not many people sign up ahead of time
for shift duty-so the market day chairman (me) is worried right into the
market itself that there will be insufficient staffing to run the market.
Please, everybody, next time, sign up in advance!
With that bit of grousing out of the way, I want to thank everybody
who helped with supplies and showed up for work. Charlie KF6CUU Arney was
of enormous help: the Red Cross van had been in an accident and was unavailable,
so Charlie and his truck showed up Friday evening at the Palo Alto Red
Cross to load and carry off the food-table "hardware," then showed up at
4:00 a.m. the next morning to help set up the market, then worked the entire
market, then carted everything back to the Red Cross!
I thank you all very much, indeed. I think the list below shows everyone.
If I missed someone, I regret it and do apologize.
Charlie KF6CUU Arney
Andy VE3FZK Korsak
Dick N6ATD Baldwinson
Martin KD6WJW Liberman
Floyd K6BSU Carter
Hans KE6TGA Neumann
Don W6VTK Conant
Ann KC6PUM Paull
Jack WA6YJR Eddy
Dennis KC6PUN Paull
Robert KE6TFU Flemate
Norm W6IQX Rehbein
Jeff KD6MNP Furman
Steve KQ6LX Whitt
Arv WA6UUT Hamer
Dave KD6WRG Wilkes
Andreas N6NU Junge
Paul AA6PZ Zander
...and the gatekeeper, Rick WB5VUL Joslin
In the end, of course-when it's all over and things have turned
out well--, it's been a whole lot of (very tiring) fun. We'll do it all
over again on April 8, 2000 (which, contrary to all the hype, is not in
the next century; the 21st century starts January 1, 2001 -
sorry, I just had to say it).
Father Wenceslaus Knotek KC6JDI
Father Knotek died December 14,1998, at the Maryknoll Headquarters in
Maryknoll, NY. "Wence", as he was known by his many friends, has been living
in the local Maryknoll retirement facility in Los Altos. This is where
the Foothill ARS has been operating on "Field Day" for many years. Before
his retirement, Wence spent his working life as part of a Catholic Mission
in the orient and, as part of his job, learned to speak Chinese fluently.
He was in the orient during world war two and became a prisoner of war
when the Japanese invaded that area. His group was not put in an interment
camp but was allowed to live at the Mission with limited freedom. He had
many interesting stories to tell of his experiences at that time. Wence
was a very intelligent individual with an interest in electronics. One
of his war stories told of discovering an early day tube type hearing aid
left behind by a previous Mission worker and using the parts to build a
short wave radio so he could get news from Voice of America. Wence came
from a large family, he was one of ten children. One of his brothers was
a ham, W9GKM in Racine, WI. After retirement and moving into the Maryknoll
here, Wence got his ham license in order to be able to talk with his brother.
They maintained regular schedules on 15 & 20 meter CW. In addition
to his ham radio interests Wence other technical interests. He built and
maintained a working seismograph at Maryknoll. He installed a sound system
in the facility Chapel and, when he found that some hard of hearing retirees
couldn't hear the service very well, he connected infra-red transmitters
to the sound system and provided infa-red receivers with earphones to the
hard of hearing. He also solved another problem, there was an elevator
at Maryknoll that frequently became stuck on one floor because someone
left without closing the door. Using parts from Radio Shack, he installed
an automatic announcement system on the elevator which, after an appropriate
time lapse, would announce in a loud clear voice "PLEASE CLOSE THE DOOR"
and repeat this announcement until the door was closed. Wence will be sorely
missed by all that knew him.
Amateur radio operation at the local Maryknoll facility has a fairly
long history. There is a 60' four legged freestanding tower complete with
a Telrex tri-band beam. The tower, visible from Hwy 280,~is located some
distance from the main building. There is a small building adjacent to
the tower with a small room at one end that serves as the "Ham Shack".
We don't know when the tower was erected but we do know that about thirty
years ago, one of the Maryknoll Fathers was a ham and was quite active.
After he left there was no activity for several years and the antenna lost
some of its elements in the winter storms. About fifteen years ago another
ham, Brother Brian KA6FRK, retired, moved into the facility and needed
help to get on the air. Jerry Starkey WA6LIJ SK-'88, organized a work party,
the beam was removed, repaired, and replaced along with a new rotator,
two meter vertical and new coax. This was not a simple task since someone
(Fred Canham K6YT) had to manhandle the beam at the 60' level and the rest
of us had to untangle the beam from the trees that had grown tall since
the tower had been erected. It is not known if any of the present residents
of Maryknoll have any plans to take over where Wence left off.
George K6OGG 04/08/99
Antenna Test Party
Date: Sat. May 15, 1999
Place: Palo Altos Baylands Nature Center Parking Lot (tentative)
Time: 9:30am to 12:00pm
Food: Donuts will be provided for early birds (donation appreciated)
Drinks: Bring your own
Bring your Ham Antenna and see how well it measures up. An antenna range
will be setup to test your 2M antenna for gain and directivity (if you
have a directional antenna).
New this year will be a special handie-talkie emulator setup for testing
HT antenna. Now is the time to bring all your rubber duckies out to see
how well they swim (or sink).
We will also have equipment available to print SWR plot for your 2M,
220 and 440 antenna. Bring your home-brew J-pole, 1/4 wave, beam, vent-pipe
or whatever if you need to do some fine tuning on your SWR and bring home
the test results.
For more information please contact Andy Fu AC6GN at AC6GN@amsat.org
or by phone at 408-813-1093
How to get to meetings:
(Visitors always welcome)
FARS meets at the Covington School District building, 201 Covington
Road, Los Altos. Take the El Monte exit (The same exit as for the Foothill
Fleamarket) off of I-280 and go East on El Monte. Cross Foothill Expressway
and turn right at the next light on to Covington (Note Saint William church
on corner). Stay to your left as the road forks. Just past the fork, turn
left into the school parking lot. Walk through the center hallway and turn
right. The meeting room is the first door on the left. Talk in on 145.23
or 145.27, negative offset, 100 PL.