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FARS Meeting Programs - 2022 [2021] [2022] [2023]


FARS meetings take place on the 4th Friday of each month, except for no meeting in January (Winter Banquet), and meetings on a different Friday in June (Field Day), November (Thanksgiving), and December (Christmas). See the calendar for specific dates.

Meeting Schedule

  • 7:00PM - General socializing. Meet and Greet.
  • 7:30PM - Introductions, Announcements.
  • 7:45PM - The evening's program.
  • 8:45PM - FARS business. Announcements. Raffle.

After the program, and FARS business, we hold a prize raffle and the “Wish You Were Here” drawing for all the cash in the jar!

COVID‑19 Rules:
We ask the following from our in-person participants:

  • Participants should be fully vaccinated for COVID‑19 before attending an in-person meeting.
  • Participants are encouraged to wear face masks in the meeting room, except when speaking.
  • All participants should maintain social distancing from other attendees.
  • Please don't attend an in-person meeting if you are feeling ill, or are at particular risk.

Visitors are welcome to attend our regular meetings. (directions)
Covington School, 205 Covington Road, Los Altos, CA.



Friday May 27, 2022 - Membership Meeting

To be Announced

K6YA

This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting is also available on-line via Zoom.

K6YA is the Club radio call sign for the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. The current trustee for K6YA is KA6MZE. This picture is of the Field Day 2007 set up crew.

Other:

Refreshments
Raffle prizes
Questions for Dr Know-it-All

We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:

  1. Choice of one of:
    • Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA) 2-port network analyzer with SMA connectors, broad frequency coverage 50 kHz to 3.0 GHz, measures S11, S22, S21 and S12, includes calibration kit. Updated version. Best color display
    • Tiny Spectrum Analyzer Frequency 100KHz-350MHz, resolution 2.5KHz-640KHz. Bandpass filters for 2.6KHz-640KHz. Built in calibrated Signal generator from 100KHz-960MHz. Complete with cables, telescopic antenna, and LiOn battery
  2. Choice of one of:
    • BaoFeng UV-5R Dual Band VHF/UHF HT
    • LiOn 5AH USB Power Bank charges via USB and solar, built-in LED Flashlight, with USB charging cable and separate compass
    • Pryme RD-98 Portable Dual Band Antenna with adapters for BNC, SMA male and SMA female
    • Workman KS-1 BNC Mag Mount Mobile Radio Antenna
    • Fiberglass Portable Mast by SPIRIT of AIR
[NEW Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA)]

NEW Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA) 2-port network analyzer w/ SMA connectors, covers 50 kHz to 3.0 GHz

[]

Tiny Spectrum Analyzer Frequency 100KHz-960MHz, resolution 2.5KHz-640KHz

[BaoFeng UV-5R]

BaoFeng UV-5R Dual Band VHF/UHF HT

[LiOn USB Backup]

LiOn 5AH USB Power Bank w/ solar charger, LED flashlight

[Pryme RD-98 Portable Antenna]

Pryme RD-98 Portable Dual Band Antenna with adapters for BNC, SMA male and SMA female

[Workman KS-1 Mag Mount Mobile Radio Antenna]

Workman KS-1 BNC Mag Mount Mobile Radio Antenna

[Fiberglass Portable Mast]

Fiberglass Portable Mast by SPIRIT of AIR



* Indicates prizes awarded.

Friday June 17, 2022 - Membership Meeting

To be Announced

K6YA

This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting is also available on-line via Zoom.

This meeting was two weeks earlier than usual. It has been scheduled for the 3rd Friday instead of the usual 4th Friday of the month because of Field Day. Be sure to put the correct date on the calendar.

K6YA is the Club radio call sign for the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. The current trustee for K6YA is KA6MZE. This picture is of the Field Day 2007 set up crew.

Other:

Refreshments
Raffle prizes
Questions for Dr Know-it-All

We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:



    * Indicates prizes awarded.

    Friday July 22, 2022 - Membership Meeting

    To be Announced

    K6YA

    This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting is also available on-line via Zoom.

    K6YA is the Club radio call sign for the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. The current trustee for K6YA is KA6MZE. This picture is of the Field Day 2007 set up crew.

    Other:

    Refreshments
    Raffle prizes
    Questions for Dr Know-it-All

    We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:



      * Indicates prizes awarded.

      Friday August 26, 2022 - Membership Meeting

      To be Announced

      K6YA

      This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting is also available on-line via Zoom.

      K6YA is the Club radio call sign for the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. The current trustee for K6YA is KA6MZE. This picture is of the Field Day 2007 set up crew.

      Other:

      Refreshments
      Raffle prizes
      Questions for Dr Know-it-All

      We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:



        * Indicates prizes awarded.

        Friday September 23, 2022 - Membership Meeting

        FARS Annual Amateur Radio Home Brew Contest

        K6YA

        This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting is also available on-line via Zoom.

        This meeting is about you. Yes you, our members and guests. Our Annual Amateur Radio Homebrew Contest is a opportunity to show off a project that you have worked on in the past year. Each participant has a few minutes to show and explain his project to our audience and has a chance to win one of our four prizes:

        $40 First prize
        $30 Second prize
        $20 Third prize
        $10 Fourth prize
        K6YA is the Club radio call sign for the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. The current trustee for K6YA is KA6MZE. This picture is of the Field Day 2007 set up crew.

        Other:

        Refreshments
        Raffle prizes
        Questions for Dr Know-it-All

        We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:



          * Indicates prizes awarded.

          Friday October 28, 2022 - Membership Meeting

          Program to be Announced

          K6YA

          This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting is also available on-line via Zoom.

          K6YA is the Club radio call sign for the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. The current trustee for K6YA is KA6MZE. This picture is of the Field Day 2007 set up crew.

          Other:

          Refreshments
          Raffle prizes
          Questions for Dr Know-it-All

          We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:



            * Indicates prizes awarded.

            Friday November 18, 2022 - Membership Meeting

            Program to be Announced

            K6YA

            This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting is also available on-line via Zoom.

            This meeting is one week earlier than usual. It has been scheduled for the 3rd Friday instead of the usual 4th Friday of the month due to Thanksgiving. Be sure to put the correct date on the calendar.

            K6YA is the Club radio call sign for the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. The current trustee for K6YA is KA6MZE. This picture is of the Field Day 2007 set up crew.

            Other:

            Refreshments
            Raffle prizes
            Questions for Dr Know-it-All

            We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:



              * Indicates prizes awarded.

              Friday December 16, 2022 - Membership Meeting

              Program to be Announced

              K6YA

              This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting is also available on-line via Zoom.

              This meeting is one week earlier than usual. It has been scheduled for the 3rd Friday instead of the usual 4th Friday of the month due to Christmas. Be sure to put the correct date on the calendar.

              K6YA is the Club radio call sign for the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. The current trustee for K6YA is KA6MZE. This picture is of the Field Day 2007 set up crew.

              Other:

              Refreshments
              Raffle prizes
              Questions for Dr Know-it-All

              We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:



                * Indicates prizes awarded.

                Previous Programs - 2022 [2021] [2022] [2023]


                Friday January 28, 2022 - Membership Meeting

                Balloon-lifted Full Wave Loop Antennas

                Jim Deloach, WU0I

                NO meeting at Covington this month, due to the surge in Omicron COVID‑19 cases. This was an on-line only meeting via Zoom.

                Are you stuck in your suburban lot with little or no space to put up an antenna, or are you stuck in a forest? For once, do you want to have the big signal, the kind you can only get from a really big antenna? Then what you need is a balloon-lifted antenna for your next Field Day or other contest event! This presentation shows you:

                • how to build a balloon-lifted full wave loop antenna,
                • explains why loops work so well with balloons,
                • discusses the unique operational details of flying balloon-lifted antennas,
                • shares examples of performance,
                • and cover regulations & safety procedures.
                Jim DeLoach, WU0I, is a Silicon Valley location technology and wireless systems engineer specialized in data analytics, field testing, tools development, and product definition.

                For fun, Jim loves to build high-performance temporary contest antennas and stations, but prefers to get out of the way and let the real operators take over as soon as the station is up and running.

                Jim is a frequent QST author, and winner of the Bill Orr Award for technical writing. His articles on balloon-lifted antennas appeared in QST, July 2007 and January 2009.

                There was no raffle, or WYWH prize for this meeting.

                Friday February 25, 2022 - Membership Meeting

                Amateur Radio Resources that Save Space

                Steve Stearns, K6OIK

                NO meeting at Covington this month, due to the surge in Omicron COVID‑19 cases. This was an on-line only meeting via Zoom.

                If you buy too much ham stuff, your house will overflow with Amateur Radio equipment. In this updated reprise of a popular talk, Steve, K6OIK shows how to continue collecting ham stuff even if your house is overflowing. The secret is to collect stuff that occupies no space. Radio information, in the form of articles, papers, books, or other publications, is available online. Whether it is an article from Popular Electronics, a home-study course from National Radio Institute, books on antennas, an NAB Engineering Handbook, papers from IEEE or the Bell System Technical Journal, it is available online if you know where and how to look. Steve shows the sources of information (software, archival articles, papers, and books) that Google often fails to find and yet is free and occupies no space except on your hard drive. This presentation is an update to the one given to FARS in July 2016.

                Steve's presentation is available on-line.

                HF phone: Golden Bear Amateur Radio Net, 3,975 kHz LSB at 1900 Pacific time daily.

                E-Mail: k6oik AT arrl.net

                Articles: /docs/k6oik

                Steve Stearns, K6OIK, started in ham radio while in high school at the height of the Heathkit era. He holds an FCC Amateur Extra and a commercial General Radio Operator license with Radar endorsement. He previously held Novice, Technician, and 1st Class Radiotelephone licenses.

                He studied electrical engineering at California State University Fullerton, the University of Southern California, and Stanford, specializing in electromagnetic theory, communication, engineering and signal processing.

                Steve was Chief Technologist for TRW Firestorm Wireless Communication Products (now part of Northrop Grumman Electromagnetic Systems Laboratory), where he led the development of digital array signal processing technology for smart antennas, commercial wireless, and government communication systems.

                Steve served as assistant director of ARRL Pacific Division under Jim Maxwell W6CF, and is vice-president of the Foothills Amateur Radio Society. He holds ten U.S. patents and has over 50 professional publications. Steve has received numerous awards for professional and community volunteer activities.
                There was no raffle, or WYWH prize for this meeting.

                Friday March 25, 2022 - Membership Meeting


                KR6DD

                [Raffle Winners]

                Raffle (L-R):
                Ed, WB6IQN (2nd)
                Erik, KM6EOP (6th)
                Mike, KN6QI (1st)
                Adrian, K3ADM (4th)
                Keith, K1OKS (5th)
                Paul, KN6DHY (6th)

                Quest for the Perfect Jelly Bean (Antenna Pattern)

                Andy Korsak, KR6DD

                This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting was also available on-line via Zoom.

                Amateur Radio Direction Finding (ARDF) is often done with a single antenna that is mechanically rotated. This application imposes a special requirement on the antenna that is arguably more important than others, e.g. high gain, high directivity, or low SWR. The antenna pattern must be smooth.

                DFing can be done by peaking or nulling a signal. In either case the antenna lobe or null needs to be unique, known, stable, and independent of frequency. Side lobes and back lobes are undesired. Such lobes and the nulls between them vary with frequency in complicated and unpredictable ways. The ideal antenna pattern for ARDF resembles a jelly bean.

                Andy Korsak, KR6DD, describes his quest for the perfect jelly bean antenna pattern and progress to date. Andy will describe an antenna that almost achieves the jelly bean pattern. For antenna engineers, this talk suggests an interesting problem in pattern synthesis for a single antenna.

                Original call: VE3DVN - 1954 through about 1961. Came to U.C. Berkeley, CA Sept 1961 to study advanced mathematics. Graduated with a Ph.D. in 1966 and accepted a research position at Stanford Research Institute in Menlo Park CA

                Was relicensed in 1964 as VE3FZK on a return visit to Canada and operated under U.S. reciprocal annual permits until about 1977 when the FCC terminated that requirement. He was active on HF and ATV in the 60's and 70's. Now only on 2M, 220, 440 in the San Francisco Bay Area.

                Became a U.S. citizen in 1999 and FCC rules required obtaining a U.S. call sign.

                Current main amateur radio interests: VHF/UHF mobile rag chews, ARES, T-hunts (http://www.thunt.org), SSTV and other ham radio related software.

                As a result of many years of RDF activities assisting local OO's, accepted an invitation to join the Amateur Auxiliary to the FCC and then became the Official Observer Coordinator for the ARRL Santa Clara Valley Section of the Pacific Division. In 2019 the OO program was replaced by a new Volunteer Monitor MOU with the FCC -- did not join it. Now retired and engaged in a major project spear-heading implementation of an integrated monitoring network of participating amateur stations spread around the Greater San Francisco Bay Area.

                Member PAARA, SCARES, ARRL.

                Other:

                Refreshments
                Raffle prizes
                Questions for Dr Know-it-All

                We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:

                1. Choice of one of:
                  • * Tiny Spectrum Analyzer Frequency 100KHz-350MHz, resolution 2.5KHz-640KHz. Bandpass filters for 2.6KHz-640KHz. Built in calibrated Signal generator from 100KHz-960MHz. Complete with cables, telescopic antenna, and LiOn battery
                  • * ATYME 32 inch HDTV, connections: HDMI, USB, and A/V, resolution 1366x768, power 42W (5W standby)
                  • * Simpson 260 Multimeter Lab standard w/ Agilent probe set
                  • * Radioddity GD-73A HT world’s smallest full featured DMR/analog UHF transceiver. Palm size 2600mAH battery, charging cable, belt clip, earpiece - 2 watts output – 1024 memories 1 watt audio output - comes complete programmed to Bay Area code plug (Ed Fong’s version)
                  • Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA) 2-port network analyzer with SMA connectors, broad frequency coverage 50 kHz to 900 MHz, measures S11, S22, S21 and S12, includes calibration kit (SMA open, short and 50-ohm). Use it to measure filters, tune duplexers, match antennas, and more
                  • * CountyComm GP-5 SSB General Receiver LW/AM/FM/HF (2.5-30MHz), Full SDR w/ SiLabs 4743 chip, and nice stereo FM receiver
                2. BaoFeng UV-5R x3 Tri Band VHF/UHF HT, 136-174MHz VHF, 220-240MHz VHF, 420-520MHz, 1/4W TX
                3. * COB lantern (Chip On Board) twice as bright as conventional LED lights
                []

                Tiny Spectrum Analyzer Frequency 100KHz-960MHz, resolution 2.5KHz-640KHz

                [ATYME 32 inch HDTV, connections: HDMI, USB, and A/V]

                ATYME 32 inch HDTV, connections: HDMI, USB, and A/V

                [Simpson 260 Multimeter]

                Simpson 260 Multimeter Lab standard w/ Agilent probe set

                [Radioddity GD-73A HT]

                Radioddity GD-73A HT smallest full featured DMR/analog UHF transceiver w/ 2600mAH battery, 2W RF out, 1024 memories

                [Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA)]

                Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA) 2-port network analyzer w/ SMA connectors, covers 50 kHz to 900 MHz

                [GP-5 SSB]

                CountyComm GP-5 SSB General Receiver LW/AM/FM/HF (2.5-30MHz)

                []

                BaoFeng UV-5R x3 Tri Band VHF/UHF HT

                [COB LED lantern]

                COB lantern (Chip On Board) twice as bright as conventional LED lights



                * Indicates prizes awarded.

                Friday April 22, 2022 - Membership Meeting


                K9LA

                [Raffle Winners]

                Raffle (L-R):
                Rachel, KK6DAC (2nd)
                Jose, AJ0SE (6th)
                Mike, KN6QI (4th)
                Nick, N6VOA (1st)
                Paul, KN6DHY (3rd)

                Three Short Takes: Cycle 25, HF “nowcasting” propagation tools, HF radio in flight

                Carl Luetzelschwab, K9LA

                This month’s meeting is scheduled to convene at Covington. COVID‑19 Rules apply. This meeting was available on-line via Zoom.

                Carl Luetzelschwab, K9LA, presents short takes on three topics:

                • A Cycle 25 update.
                • Tools to determine what propagation is right now
                • HF air mobile in a Cessna 170B

                Carl's presentation is available on-line.

                For the April meeting, a complimentary dinner shall be catered by China Wok of Sunnyvale. Food will be ready by 7PM. Come early while the food is hot. Menu includes:

                • Fried Rice
                • Coconut Shrimp
                • Orange Chicken
                • Mixed vegetables

                Sesame dumplings for desert - Assorted drinks

                Carl Luetzelschwab K9LA is a long-time Amateur Radio operator, DXer, electrical engineer, writer, and HamSCI member. He curates a tremendous amount of propagation and radio science information at his website, https://k9la.us.

                He was first licensed as a Novice in October 1961 with the call WN9AVT. He is a frequent writer and contributor to Amateur Radio magazines on the topic of radio propagation and contesting. His interest in propagation dates to his college days at Purdue University (BSEE 1969, MSEE 1972).

                Carl had a 41-year career as an RF design engineer with Motorola and later with Raytheon (formerly Magnavox), where he designed solid-state RF power amplifiers. He retired in October 2013 to pursue Amateur Radio full time.

                He has been on DXpeditions (YK9A, OJ0, and many trips to ZF as ZF2LA and ZF2YL) with his wife Vicky, AE9YL. He is on the Top of the Honor Roll (worked all current DXCC entities). He has 160-Meter DXCC and needs four zones on 80-Meters for 5BWAZ.

                Other:

                Refreshments
                Raffle prizes
                Questions for Dr Know-it-All

                We will be raffling off prizes at this meeting:

                1. Choice of one of:
                  • * Radioddity GD-73A HT world’s smallest full featured DMR/analog UHF transceiver. Palm size 2600mAH battery, charging cable, belt clip, earpiece - 2 watts output – 1024 memories 1 watt audio output - comes complete programmed to Bay Area code plug (Ed Fong’s version)
                  • * Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA) 2-port network analyzer with SMA connectors, broad frequency coverage 50 kHz to 900 MHz, measures S11, S22, S21 and S12, includes calibration kit (SMA open, short and 50-ohm). Use it to measure filters, tune duplexers, match antennas, and more
                2. * BaoFeng UV-5R x3 Tri Band VHF/UHF HT, 136-174MHz VHF, 220-240MHz VHF, 420-520MHz, 1/4W TX
                3. * Radioddity Triband Antenna - Mobile magmount antenna – 2m, 1.25m, and 70cm. Complete with adapters for mini UHF and PL259
                4. * Plantronics Bluetooth Headphones - Professional water proof
                5. * $25 - Professional DVM with case and probes
                6. * Nye Viking HF low pass filter - donated by Ben Develot - HF low pass filter
                [Radioddity GD-73A HT]

                Radioddity GD-73A HT smallest full featured DMR/analog UHF transceiver w/ 2600mAH battery, 2W RF out, 1024 memories

                [Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA)]

                Nano Vector Network Analyzer (VNA) 2-port network analyzer w/ SMA connectors, covers 50 kHz to 900 MHz

                []

                BaoFeng UV-5R x3 Tri Band VHF/UHF HT

                [Radioddity Triband Antenna]

                Radioddity Triband Antenna - Mobile magmount antenna – 2m, 1.25m, and 70cm. Complete with adapters for mini UHF and PL259

                [Plantronics Bluetooth Headphones]

                Plantronics Bluetooth Headphones - Professional water proof

                [Professional DVM]

                $25 - Professional DVM with case and probes

                [Nye Viking low pass filter]

                Nye Viking HF low pass filter - donated by Ben Develot - HF low pass filter



                * Indicates prizes awarded.