Watts News

Monthly Newsletter of the

Olympia Amateur Radio Society

P.O. Box 2861, Olympia, WA 98507

April 2000                                                                                                             Edited by George Lanning  KB6LE


  •  Communications Academy 2000
  •  June Stanton Silent Key
  •  Information on PSK31
  •  Treasurer's Report
  •  Upcoming rally events
  •  Tips for rally workers
  •  New feature on OARS web site
  •  Amateur Radio withdrawn!
  •  Marriage
  •  Redneck Ham
  •  Manufacturers gather to meet future challenges
  •  Certification program posts special topics forums
  •  OARS Net check-ins
  •  April 15 dinner pictures
  • -- return to OARS main page

    Communications Academy 2000

    You have a chance to participate in a two day seminar on Amateur emergency communications on the weekend of May 6-7, at the NOAA Auditorium, Building 9, 7600 Sand Point Way, Seattle (the old site of the Sand Point Naval Air Station).

    Two days of training and information are offered on various aspects of emergency communications. Anyone with an interest in the subjects of Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES), Auxiliary Communications Service (ACS), EOC Support Teams, Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES), REACT, and others, is invited to participate. Come to learn, network, and share your experiences with others.

    OARS Vice President Dave LeFevre is involved in this event as it relates to the Medical Services Team.

    For detailed information, visit the event web page:


    Events run from 0800 to 1700 both days. Classes are free of charge.

    --return to table of contents

    June Stanton -- N7CHD -- Silent Key

    OARS members are greatly saddened at the news of June's death. The following information was provided by June's daughter, Suzanne Fell:

    June died on October 8,1999 of complications of lung cancer. She and my father Jack, W9PSP, moved to Lacey in July, 1985, from Chicago, Illinois. Jack had joined OARS several years before their move here, and June joined when they moved. Both had been Hams for over 50 years, though Mom was not very active after Dad died six years previously.

    She still kept the 2 meter on, though, and tried to attend the women's luncheon each month.

    My brother Jon has taken the W9PSP call. He lives in San Jose, and hopes to move up here in 3 years.

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    Information on PSK31

    Hello all,

    Since Jeff's article in last month's Watts News, I have had several requests for information, so here it is.

    73 de N7IVM Ben

    The following is a list of web sites which have information on the mode, and some hints and kinks.

    The principal site is:


    There are several programs for free download:

    Other sites are:



    The latter is the home page for the father of WinPSK.

    --return to table of contents


    Treasurer's Report

    As of 3/31/00

    GENERAL FUND (checking account)

    Previous balance    $ 1,471.78
    Income                  608.51
    Expenses                  0.00
    Ending balance        2,080.29

    REPEATER / PACKET FUND (savings account)

    Previous balance      $ 883.60
    Income                    6.72
    Expenses                  0.00
    Ending balance          890.32

    -- Ed Fitzgerald, N7WW, Treasurer

    --return to table of contents

    Upcoming rally events

    OK, Guys, here is the schedule for 2000:

    That's it, and subject to Salmon rules changes, of course.

    -- Paul Taylor, KC7LA, 360-866-0683

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    Tips for rally workers

    -- Paul Taylor KC7LA, Lee Chambers KI7SS, and Tom Dennis KA4VVA

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    New feature on OARS web site

    Ever want to refer back to an article in a previous issue of Watts News, but can't remember which one? "Search this site" is now available on the OARS web site. Just enter one or more key words, and the wizard will give you a list of all pages, including past issues of Watts News, that apply. There is a help menu available to assist you in how to search effectively. Each reference found includes a link -- just click on it and you are there.

    If you're not already familiar with your browser's "find" function, here is another tip: once you go to the page found above, hit a control f. A box will open. You enter the exact word or phrase you are trying to locate, hit enter, and voila! This is a browser function, not a site feature, and it works on any page you visit. It is available in Netscape and Internet Explorer, and probably in others.

    -- George Lanning, KB6LE

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    Amateur Radio withdrawn!

    By Auxiliary Communications Service (ACS) of the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services

    FCC Order No. 87

    "At a session of the Federal Communications Commission held at its offices in Washington, D.C. on the 8th day of December, l941:

    Whereas a state of war exists between the United States and the Imperial Japanese Government, and the withdrawal from private use of all amateur frequencies is required for the purpose of the National Defense; IT IS ORDERED, that except as may hereafter be specifically authorized by the Commission, no person shall engage in any amateur radio operation in the continental United States, its territories and possessions, and that all frequencies heretofore allocated to amateur radio stations under Part 12 of the Rules and Regulations BE, AND THEY ARE HEREBY, WITHDRAWN from use by any person except as may hereafter be authorized by the Commission. By order of the Commission:

    -- T.J. Slowie, Secretary."

    A few hours after the first bomb fell on Pearl Harbor, Amateur Radio in normal peacetime ceased to exist. The frequencies we used were deathly silent -- an ominous nothingness, not a chirp, nothing.

    Transmitters were packed away, receivers turned to some other use. Soon the U.S. Government wanted to buy "commercially made" transmitters and receivers. My Hallicrafters Skybuddy receiver and a Stancor 200 watt AM transmitter went to the war effort. 

    Today thousands of Amateurs have no knowledge of those events, so this bulletin is a reminder of Amateur Radio privileges.

    Prior to WW2 I participated in a forerunner to the ARRL ARES (Amateur Radio Emergency Service). There was no RACES or other emergency communications (EMCOMM) unit in use by government.

    After WW2 ended, the right to operate on Amateur frequencies was restored. I was in the U.S. Navy, and my parents mailed my CW transmitter (an 807 and a rectifier tube and few other parts). What a thrill to be on-the- air again. CQ....CQ....CQ de.....! WOW! It was great! Even if it was from outside a navy base, since operation from the base was not permitted.

    So, why write about this in the year 2000? As a reminder that the use of FCC assigned Amateur frequencies is a privilege, not a right.

    The FCC regulations say that the paramount purpose of the Amateur Service is PUBLIC SERVICE. I understand that to mean to help our communities in time of need with our skills and abilities in communications. In the year 2000 there are many ways to do that. Numerous organizations, methods, and means exist so you can help those in your area.

    Please find a way to make that part of your future. The rewards that come to you will be those you don't expect, but will find interesting! If my experience is indicative at all, you will find ways to be of help you cannot anticipate.

    -- 73 de W6WWW

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    On our 25th anniversary, my husband took me out to dinner. Our teenage daughters said they'd have dessert waiting for us when we returned. After we got home, we saw that the dining room table was beautifully set with china, crystal and candles, and there was a note that read: "Your dessert is in the refrigerator. We are staying with friends, so go ahead and do something we wouldn't do!"

    "I suppose," my husband responded, "we could vacuum."

    -- from The Joke of the Day

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    Redneck Ham

    You might be a Redneck Ham if you think:

    -- Thanks to KE4HS

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    Manufacturers gather to meet future challenges

    Representatives of the ARRL recently joined Amateur Radio equipment manufacturers and publishers for the second year in a row to share ideas and discuss issues facing the ham radio industry. The session last weekend was organized by Amateur Electronic Supply Manager Ray Grenier, K9KHW, and held at the Wisconsin hunting lodge of AES owner Phil Majerus.

    Attending on behalf of the ARRL were ARRL Executive Vice President Dave Sumner, K1ZZ; ARRL Advertising Manager John Bee, N1GNV, and ARRL Marketing Coordinator Bob Inderbitzen, NQ1R.

    Leading the discussions were Gordon West, WB6NOA, of the Gordon West Radio School, and Bob Heil, K9EID, of Heil Sound Limited.

    Sumner said much of the talk centered on ways to better support local efforts to attract new amateurs. "As all politics is local, so is the case here," Sumner said. During the session, ICOM and other manufacturers proposed offering prizes of equipment to clubs that do the best job of promoting Amateur Radio at local theaters screening the upcoming movie "Frequency."

    Antenna restrictions also were a hot topic at the manufacturers' meeting. "The group identified antenna restrictions and especially restrictive covenants, as the greatest challenge facing ham radio at this point," Sumner said. He emphasized in his remarks to the group that antenna restrictions remain a priority issue for the League.

    Sumner also acknowledged the extraordinary efforts of amateurs in recent emergencies, including the situation off Honduras where 13-year-old Willem van Tuijl was shot and seriously wounded when the family's sailboat was attacked by marauders.

    Bee said the gathering was upbeat. "I thought there were a lot of positive thoughts expressed at the meeting," he said. He said manufacturers were more optimistic about the business outlook than in the past, in part because of FCC license restructuring. The group also recognized the importance of expanding support to the many hams soon getting licensed or upgrading as a result of restructuring.

    The manufacturers meeting was held in conjunction with the annual AES Superfest, April 7 and 8. Amateurs attending Superfest had a chance to meet with more than 36 manufacturers exhibiting at the AES store in Milwaukee. The event also included informational forums, license exams, and volunteers representing area radio clubs. AES Superfest 2000 was an ARRL-sanctioned event.

    Bob Inderbitzen, NQ1R, contributed information for this story.

    -- from the ARRL Letter, Electronic Edition

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    Certification program posts "special topics" forums

    Nine "special topics" forums have been posted to supplement the general forum accepting membership comments on the ARRL Certification and Continuing Education Program. Interim Forum Moderator L.B. Cebik, W4RNL, invites members to contribute ideas, help answer challenging questions or help formulate aspects of the program in any or all of the forums. 

    The Web-based forum site


    went "live" earlier this month to collect member input on how the new ARRL Certification and Continuing Education program should be designed and what it should include. The complementary special topics forums were provided to help focus member comments in areas where forum participants have expressed a particular interest. These forums now include: Emergency Communications; Teaching and Training in Amateur Radio; Web-Based Education; Testing, Measurement, and Troubleshooting; Integrating Elmers into Continuing Education; Morse - CW Proficiency; Advanced Communications Electronics Topics; Hands- On Experiments in Continuing Education; and Presentations and CEU Credits. 

    "If these prove fruitful, we may add more special topics forums," Cebik said. Since the forum opened, more than 650 comments have been posted, and Cebik says the input has generally been extremely helpful. 

    "There have been many good contributions," he said. "Some are expressions of needs -- and from some of those will emerge the list of advanced or special topics study units." Cebik said some contributors have offered definite ideas on content, while others have called attention to other sources of information and other programs that may serve of partial models. 

    According to Cebik, the Emergency Communications forum has been the most active of among those in the special topics group. "Pat Lambert, W0IPL, has been absorbing the incoming ideas and revising a working outline for the group to use as a source for further input," he explained. 

    Members are invited to suggest specific programs and areas of study or skills development they would like to see as part of the Certification Program. All comments posted are available for all participants to read. Return visits are encouraged. "All ideas are welcome and valuable in shaping the program to come," Cebik said.

    The League expects to roll out the initial phase of the Certification and Continuing Education Program later this year.

    -- from the ARRL Letter, Electronic Edition

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    OARS Net check-ins

    The following stations checked in with the OARS General Information Net on March 14, April 4, or both:

        AA7YD    AB7PS   K7CEZ   K7JQR

        K7LA     K7TAG   KA4VVA  KB6LE


        KD6ZBS*  KD7AVI  KD7JDL  KF6GAQ*

        KI7BF    N7JHJ   N7PP    N7SSD

        N7WW     W3GE    W7SAY   W7SIX


    * Net control stations

    The net meets at 7:30 every Tuesday evening on the 3 linked OARS repeaters: 147.36, 224.46, & 441.40 MHz.

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    April 15 dinner

    The all-hams Spring dinner, also known as the S.O.G. (Semi-Official Get-together) was greatly enjoyed by all who attended. Here are some photos taken at the event:

    Harry Lewis W7JWJ and Lee Chambers KI7SS

    Jim Fenstermaker K9JF 


      Larry Watkinson  KC7CKO

    Jack Barber  W1PRT 

    Mark and Helen Hannigan K7CEZ & KB7JDL

    Sara and Bob Lyon  AB7PS & AA7YD

    --return to table of contents

    -- return to OARS main page