The FARS Relay

Volume 31, Number 2 - FEBRUARY 2001

February Meeting

The speaker at FARS February meeting on Wednesday Feb. 28 will be Gary Youngs, K6GLY. Gary's topic will be HF mobiling with a screwdriver antenna.

- Steve, K6OIK


The electronic swap meet is on at Foothill College again. March through October, second Saturday. Get there early (5 AM with miner's helmet is not unusual) and bring $2 in quarters for parking (This may have increased to $3)

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.

FARS NET on 145.23 repeater Thursday nights at 8 PM.


Shel wanted me to include a sheet of colored paper with a renewal message and form. That would mean having to collate the newsletter by hand and I just don't have time. For now, the above headline and this message will have to do. However, if it isn't effective, there are papers in many obnoxious colors available. Renew now and save a tree.


Antenna Farm Spotted

If you are driving around in West San Jose, check out the antenna farm behind the Carrows restaurant on the East side of Saratoga between Williams and Moorpark. It has been there for years and indicates a varied interest in Amateur radio.

President's Corner

I want to remind everyone that it is now past time to pay your dues for this year. The first flea market is coming up in March and FARS will have the one in May. We need you to help and if you will do so please let Shel know. We will have a sign up sheet at this next meeting.

We are still trying to find a location for the club station if you have any ideas please let a board member know. The board approved to have a committee actively looking for a place and I would like to have two club members who are willing to help on this committee.

Omri will be heading up Field Day this year and we need captains for the stations that will be in operation if you are willing to do this please contact Omri.

Hope to see you all on Wednesday the 28th.

de Jack WA6YJR

Secretary's Report

The FARS board held its monthly meeting on the evening of February 6, 2001. Members present were Jack, WA6YJR, Howard, KE6PWH, Herb,KF6BKL, Omri, AA6TA, David, KD6WRG, Mikel, KN6QI, Steve, K6OIK, Dick, N6ATD, Shel, N6RD, Charlie, KF6CUU, and Martin, KD6WJW. Preparations were made for both the flea market in May and Field Day in June. Shel will be in charge of the former and Omri will head up the latter. Both requested help! The other major item was a discussion of possible sites for the club station.

Martin, KD6WJW


President: Jack Eddy, WA6YJR
Vice Pres. Steve Stearns, K6OIK
Treasurer: Shel Edelman, N6RD
Secretary: Martin Liberman, KD6WJW
Training Officer: Rich Steibel, W6APZ
Radio Officer: Omri Serlin AA6TA
Newsletter: David Wilkes KD6WRG

Board members: Dick Baldwinson N6ATD; Herb Davidson KF6BKL, Charles Arney KF6CUU, David Cooper KE6PFF, Michael Lechner KN6QI

K6YA Station Trustee: Stan Kuhl, K6MA

FARS Web Page:

FARS announcement mailing list is moderated, so you cannot reply directly to the list.

Also, note you can contact the FARS board of directors at

To subscribe/unsubscribe, send a message to:

In the e-mail message (in plain text) put one of:

unsubscribe fars-announce YOUR-EMAIL-ADDRESS

subscribe fars-announce YOUR-EMAIL-ADDRESS

(eg. Subscribe fars-announce

The FARS Relay is the official monthly newsletter of the Foothills Amateur Radio Society Meetings are held at 7 PM on the fourth Wednesday of each month except January (Winter Banquet); and 3rd Wednesday in June, Nov. & Dec. Annual membership $20; family $25. Visitors are always welcome! Directions on the back page. Talk-in: N6NFI (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 is how to reach the editor:

VHF voice: KD6WRG on N6NFI, 145.23- (100Hz PL) FARS net Thursdays 8PM; Various other times.
Mail: 1093 Kelly Drive San Jose CA 95129-3222
Voice: 408-996-1613 (Until 9 PM); Fax: 408-725-1036, and at FARS meetings.


de Rich, W6APZ

This month we are continuing with information we all should know from the Technician Class question pool. How many will you get correct this time?

On what HF band may a Technician licensee use FM phone emission?
On what frequencies within the 2-meter band may images emissions be transmitted?
What emission types are Technician control operators who have passed a Morse code exam allowed to use on frequencies from 28.3 to 28.5 MHz?
Who is responsible for the proper operation of an amateur station?
How often must an amateur station be identified?
What identification, if any, is required when two amateur stations end communications?
What is the definition of third-party communications?

(Answers below)

What to Do With Treasures?

I have a lot of electronic hobby magazines and technical journals dating back to the Sixties. I also have multi-language medical equipment manuals and technical papers. Hardware includes several TVs from the Forties, a pair of EKGs from the Fifties, and many other items. I am looking for a museum that saves these things. Otherwise, I am going to hold on to them as long as I can and then dump them.

I think it is a shame to throw these things away. I don't want to take them to the flea market because they will be thrown away later. They are historical documents. They should be available for research or just perusing.

Now that you have all stopped laughing: I am sure I am not the only one with this problem. Ideas anybody?

David KD6WRG

Steve's Stuff

Tony Peterson, N7QVC, of Oregon, this week was shocked to receive a sharply worded e-mail from an attorney representing the QVC cable TV sales folks accusing him of infringing on the QVC mark. The message was clear: Peterson would have to give up his Web domain or risk a huge lawsuit. “Your unauthorized use of N7QVC.COM is an infringement of the QVC marks,” wrote attorney Stanley C. Macel III. “That is, your use of N7QVC.COM is likely to cause the public to believe that you are sponsored or approved in some way by our client. In addition, your use of N7QVC.COM constitutes false advertising, because it misrepresents the nature, characteristics, qualities and origin of your commercial activities.” The situation was complicated by the fact that someone hacked Peterson's Web domain and diverted it to a site containing material of, shall we say, a questionable nature.

Peterson responded promptly, explaining that his call-sign-related domain name was purely noncommercial and had nothing to do with QVC. Attorney Macel quickly backtracked, although not without including some lawyerly caveats. “While we find nothing objectionable about the manner of use of the QVC mark in your domain name,” he said, “nevertheless, as the owner of a highly distinctive radio call sign and domain name yourself, I am sure you can understand the care with which we monitor QVC's brand identity. In order to resolve this matter, relying upon your representation that your use of the letters QVC in your domain name are used only for your personal use, and not for commercial activities that would create the impression that you are affiliated or connected with QVC Inc in any way, we will take no further action.” Peterson has expressed his gratitude to members of the amateur community who supported him during the recent “crisis.”

Check out this antenna!

By the way, Maurice Hately is the inventor of the multiband “dipole of delight” that has the capacitive BALUN. I discussed my design of a sub-octave band matching network at the FARS meeting a few months ago (home brew night). The network added 80 meter operation.

Interference reported in UHF public safety bands The FCC reports it's gotten word of a rash of interference problems created by oscillating preamplifiers built into Winegard TV antennas used primarily on RVs, campers and motor homes. The interference generally appears in the 400-500 MHz range, and has caused interference problems to public safety and amateur radio operation at distances of several miles away. The FCC's Gary Hendrickson says Winegard has acknowledged the problem and estimates that there may be as many as 40,000 defective units in the field, which it has agreed to replace at no charge.

There is an article on multi-element antenna analysis using Mathcad in the February issue of Applied Microwave & Wireless. The author gives his Mathcad source code and an example of the analysis of a Yagi-Uda antenna. He references J.D. Kraus.

Nestor E. Arias, “Calculating Multi-Element Antennas Using Mathcad,” Applied Wireless & Microwave, vol. 13, no. 2, pp. 46-55, February 2001.

Web Sites of Interest

Boat Anchor Manual Archive (downloadable, vintage equipment):

W6FG Vintage Manuals:

Michelle's Electronics (consumer electronics):

A.G. Tannenbaum:

Heathkit (downloadable manuals and schematics):

Columbia (military communications):

W.J. Ford (manual rental):

Hi Manuals:

Manual Man:

Manuals Plus:

Nostalgia Air (downloadable, antique electronics):

Technician's Filing Cabinet (link site):

Raymond Sarrio:

Surplus Sales of Nebraska:

Marty Gasman (audio & video):

Treasure Chest Corp. (consumer electronics):

Vacuum Tube Valley (vintage hi-fi):

SND Tubes (tube testers):

Source: Dean Huster, Poptronics magazine, Feb 2001.

73 Steve, K6OIK


de Rich, W6APZ

FARS has been able to schedule two sets of ham radio classes: one for the Technician Class license, and one for the General Class license. The Technician course will be held on six Thursday evenings beginning April 26 and ending on May 31st at the Cubberley school site on Middlefield Road in Palo Alto. Each class will be 2 1/2 to 3 hours long with rest breaks between presentations. The exact starting and ending times will be determined by the Board, but we have use of the room from 6:30 PM until 10 PM on those nights.

The General Class course will be given on six Tuesday evenings beginning on July 24 and ending on August 28, also at Cubberley. We have already begun providing Morse Code practice on Wednesday nights at 8 PM to help those interested in passing the code requirement for their General Class license. We intend to continue the code practice through the end of August. More information about the General Class course will be available as the time gets closer.

In contrast to the one-day or week-end cram ham courses, we aim to explain the theory behind the questions, provide mentors for the students, and provide some practical hands-on operating experience during the technician course. It has been my experience that while many of those taking the cram courses pass, they have no idea what to do afterward. We hope that the approach FARS is taking will not only provide the information required to pass the ham exam, but provide the friendship of experienced FARS hams so that the graduates of our classes will want to join FARS.

Flyers will be prepared announcing the classes, which will be free except for the cost of the materials, as we are trying to get as many people as possible to become hams and increase the FARS membership. The flyers will explain that the students will be given the study guide, Now You?re Talking, several weeks before the first class with a course outline (what will be covered each week), and a list of mentors (FARS members) whom they can contact for help. The students will be encouraged to read the material before each class and come prepared to ask questions. Each class will consist of presentations on two or three subjects from the study guide with an eye to answering the students? questions and addressing the questions in the Technician question pool from which the ham license exam will be taken. In this way, we will prepare the students not only to learn the correct answers to all the possible test questions, but also to understand the questions and be able to apply the information in their ham radio activities. The last class will be review; the ham exam will then be given by a VE group.

An important part of ham radio is emergency preparedness. The classrooms at Cubberley are being provided for our use at no cost through the Palo Alto Office of Emergency Services. Classroom rental is normally $19/hour. During the class where we discuss amateur emergency preparedness, we hope to bring in the ham who is the EC (emergency coordinator) for each city represented by the students in the class to give a brief pitch on how the students, as new hams, can participate in walkathons, SETs (simulated emergency tests), and other fun activities which will improve their communication skills, which will be needed in an emergency.

This is an ambitious undertaking. To make this work, we need our members? help as mentors & instructors. While some of our members have already signed up to help, we need more help to cover all the topics and classes. Please contact me via email ( or phone (650-494-0128) and let me know:

  1. that you are available as an instructor (and what you feel competent teaching),
  2. which of the above dates/times you could be available, and
  3. if you will also help as a mentor.

Even if you cannot be available to teach during the class, if you can be available via phone to answer students? questions, that is also very important.

Answers to Test

144.1 - 148.0 MHz only
CW and single-sideband phone (Note the difference between this question and T1C01. The questions may seem similar, but the answers are very different. - W6APZ)
Both the control operator and the station licensee (This would apply to anyone using the club station - when its back up and operating.)
At least every ten minutes during and at the end of a contact. (Note that in the discussion of station identification on page 1-19 of Now You're Talking!, it says: You should not press the push-to-talk button on your radio or microphone to send a test transmission to test your access to a repeater without giving your call sign. That would be an example of an unidentified transmission, and is illegal. The same identification requirement applies to accessing a repeaters signal strength read-back circuit.)
Each station must transmit its own call sign.
A message sent between two amateur stations for someone else.

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 Flea market) 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.

Map of Los Altos Town Crier