Watts News

Monthly Newsletter of the
Olympia Amateur Radio Society
P.O. Box 2861, Olympia, WA 98507

 November 2000
Edited by George Lanning  KB6LE 

Table of Contents

  •  OARS officers for 2001
  •  Recap 2000
  •  Road Rallies 2001
  •  Phase 3D launch information net set
  •  Minutes of OARS meeting for October 25, 2000
  •  ARES/RACES Meeting November 9, 2000
  •  Learn Chinese in 5 Minutes
  •  From the mouths of babes
  •  Flight delays
  •  OARS Meeting Program Calendar for 2001
  •  Treasurer's Report
  •  OARS may be featured on ARRL SSC spotlight page

  • --return to OARS home page

    OARS officers for 2001

    Unlike the U.S. presidential race, all balloting and recounts for the annual OARS elections were completed in one session at the October meeting. Officers elect are:

    The new officers will begin their terms on January 1, 2001.

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    Recap 2000

    By Lee Chambers, KI7SS

    Well, our millennium year is almost history, and it's time to look back and summarize. 2000 was a banner year for ham communications activity. We supported everything we were asked to in fine fashion, throwing ourselves into the work like there was no tomorrow! Lets review our successes and consider our future endeavors:

    At the "big picture" level, we had monthly meetings, and weekly nets, and mock searches, and we were on alert for flood support a time or two. We supported car rallies in February, March, June, and September. We supported the Capitol City Marathon in May and the YMCA 10K "fun-run" in June. We spent the last weekend, of course, running our NT7H Field Day setup down at the Olympia Farmer's Market. We supported the Lakefair parade in July, and the Horse-a-thon in August. We had a Christmas dinner, and another in April, and a potluck picnic in August. We had tables at the flea market. We ran three radio classes this year. Some of us made the Saturday morning ham breakfasts every month! And that's just the stuff I know a little about -- I know there's more.

    Each of these events was a success, from our standpoint. Not bad for a small circle of friends!

    What's coming? We're certain to be asked back, for one thing! Moreover, each time we get asked back we're expected to perform as well as, or better than, last time. No small order. We must be doing a lot right, but there is a price. We need to plan, formulate strategies, and prepare, so those things we left poorly done we can do perfectly next time -- and that's the price.

    Not that anything we did we did poorly, quite the opposite: we dramatized how well it can be done. Take the Marathon. It went off perfectly as usual, and in addition we put a lightweight APRS system together, and the crowd at the finish loved it -- they could see where the lead and the tail were. Next year we need to make this technology REALLY work for everyone -- we could follow the lead woman runner, for instance, and do a better display, with feeds to the announcer and to the crowds! We'll need a few more APRS systems and a few more operators helping, and ideally some of you to make all those planning meetings.

    The Lakefair parade was a singular success, but there were some tense moments. We identified some problems with the parade's coordination and will need a few more hams to fix them and make it run even more smoothly and consistently. The hams with the announcers worked great! Mostly what we need to do is create some separate nets at the starting point, to assure that we'll have the floats and cheerleaders and horses at the starting point at the right times. Also we need to fix the endings; many participants were left far from their buses or rides, with no way to get back to them or communicate with them. We need to find a way to manage that, even though it's not strictly our job. We can do it. Each event we do, we learn from, and do better each time. We're becoming a major player in our community with these efforts-people notice our work. 

    We need a float for parades. Anyone want to work on building one? 

    The September SCCA road rally was a spectacular success. This was a "semi-national" event, with about 50 cars at the start (only about 31 finished), and as the race was spread over about 30 miles, it took a large crew to make it happen. Over thirty of you helped, and it showed. (Don't forget the free worker's appreciation dinner, hosted by the SCCA, when it comes around this January.) During the planning phase it was a delight, as I called you for help, to get "I'll be there's" from hams almost every time I called someone. Thanks!

    As you know, I took up the mantle of Vice-President for the year 2001, a post I haven't held for some years. I'd like to publish a planned schedule of programs for 2001 in a month or two, and I need your help in selecting the venues. So if you've been itching to see a presentation on something, let me know and I'll try and find a presenter. Or, if you have a favorite topic, I'd love to help you present it! Without input I'll create my own schedule, and you wouldn't want that! Some topics already requested include ATV, a "construction project," and antenna-building or discussion, programs. E-mail me at Ta_veren@Juno.com and let me know your 'druthers, please!

    I'm planning two LARGE technician classes, both of which will compete for dates in January, February, or March, from the looks of things. The Mormon Church -- or rather, FIVE area Mormon churches have asked for a class -- this could top 50 people. And the Boy Scouts in Troop 166 have asked for a weekend crash class -- and they have about 30 people interested. These aren't even our usual "open, advertised" classes, although anyone with an interest can come to one of them. I may need an additional class to manage that load. If you have presentation skills I could use the help!

    Here's a tip: check out the ARRL web site. What a wonderful resource! (And it runs on Linux, too!) If you're an ARRL member there's a "redirector" so you can be reached by call sign. Thus I can be reached at KI7SS@ARRL.NET as well as my Juno address, which I'll admit is goofy. Two other web sites worth mentioning, especially if you are using a cable modem or DSL line, are these free virus checker sources: Steve Gibson's "ShieldsUP!" Page at http://grc.com/ and "HouseCall," Trend Micro's free on-line virus scanner at http://housecall.antivirus.com/.

    -- BCNU es 73, Lee, KI7SS

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    Road Rallies 2001

    Here's the 2001 Rally schedule, as planned at this time. (Therefore, subject to change!)

    The Doo Wops, the Dryad Quest/Shitepoke, ORV Rallysprints, and the Sou'Wester/Wild West are local events, and all will need our hams except the ORV event. The Oregon events also need hams, if any are interested. At least, there is no conflict with the Mock Search!

    Paul G. Taylor KC7LA
    Olympia, WA
    Day Phone (360)754-1718; Fax (360)754-1704
    e-mail: paultkc7la@hotmail.com

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    Phase 3D launch information net set

    With the launch of the next-generation Phase 3D amateur satellite just days away, a launch information net is being established to provide information and commentary via several outlets, including amateur frequencies. Phase 3D is scheduled to be launched aboard an Ariane 5 rocket November 15 at 0107 UTC from the European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.

    Details are being worked out for the AMSAT Launch Information Net Service to run "live" during the launch. Houston AMSAT Coordinator Bruce Paige, KK5DO, says the net will provide launch information and commentary via several HF stations on various bands as well as on local repeaters.

    The current schedule calls for the net to start about 15 minutes before launch and carry through separation of P3D. Paige says the plan is to monitor the Arianespace TV C-band satellite feed for real-time launch information, then communicate that information via a telephone bridge. "We are not re-transmitting the Arianespace audio to avoid possible problems with the FCC," he explained. The telephone linkup will include key AMSAT personnel who will add their own comments and details to the real-time announcements.

    Participating commentators in addition to Paige include newly elected AMSAT-NA President Robin Haighton, VE3FRH, as well as AMSAT-NA Vice President for Operations Keith Pugh, W5IU; Andy MacAllister, W5ACM; Pat Kilroy, N8PK at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center; launch team second-in-command Chuck Green, N0ADI; North American Command Station Stacy Mills, W4SM; and IARU Satellite Coordinator Hans van den Groenendaal, ZS5AKV. Others may be added as the launch approaches.

    Paige says the Houston AMSAT Net, http://www.amsatnet.com, will carry the launch information net telephone feed on its normal net connections -- satellite, local repeater and Internet RealAudio. 

    The Launch Information Net also will be carried by key HF stations, led by the Goddard Amateur Radio Club's WA3NAN http://garc.gsfc.nasa.gov/www/retransmission/retrans_status.html. WA3NAN expects to be on the air an hour prior to launch and will re-transmit on its shuttle frequencies, 3.860, 7.185, 14.295, 21.395, and 147.45 MHz. W5RRR at the Johnson Space Center in Texas -- or its alternates -- will use 3.840, 7.279, and 14.282 MHz.

    The Radio Club of Kourou's FY5KE also has announced plans to broadcast the Phase 3D launch on 14.315 MHz in French "and probably in English."

    According to Paige, Bob Arnold, N2JEU, is planning to make the Arianespace audio available on the Internet. Details are available at http://www.ralabs.com/livep3d.

    CQ Amateur Radio magazine has announced plans to offer continuously updated coverage of the Phase 3D launch via its Web site, http://www.cq-amateur-radio.com. CQ Editor Rich Moseson, W2VU, says Satellite Editor Phil Chien, KC4YER, will author a running "launch log" in which he'll post regular updates every few minutes. CQ also will provide links to sites featuring live launch video.

    -- ARRL Letter, Electronic Edition

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    Minutes of OARS meeting for October 25, 2000

    The meeting was called to order at 19:00. There were 19 members in attendance. There were three guests attending: KB7GZM, Jim; WB7ROZ, and one other whose call I missed. 

    There was a short discussion on getting a table at the upcoming Mike and Key club Flea Market.

    There was a brief discussion about a Christmas Party. The members introduced themselves.

    The election of officers for the year 2001 was held. The slate of nominees as published in the OARS newsletter was elected by unanimous vote.

    Lee Chambers, KI7SS, spoke about his training classes. He told us that the training tapes he had are outdated and needed replacement. A motion was approved for the purchase of new training videos.

    There was a discussion on next year's Field Day activities. 

    The evening's program was Jim Fernstermaker, K9JF, who spoke about current activity at the ARRL. Then he provided us with a slide presentation on the last WRTC in Slovenia.

    The meeting adjourned at 2100.

    -- Dan Crane, KB7DFL

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    ARES/RACES Meeting November 9, 2000

    The meeting was called to order at 1933. There were 17 members in attendance.

    Tom, KA4VVA spoke on the current security system at the EOC, and gave a recap of the training session to be held at the close of business.

    Allan, W7SAY spoke on the callout for Lewis County.

    Dan, KB7DFL stated that the equipment at the EOC was operating normally.

    Fred, W7SIX spoke of the problems with the repeaters at this time and said that he and Ken, K7TAG would be working on them on Friday.

    Lee, KI7SS talked about his training classes and of an article he is preparing for QST dealing with local support of Road Rallies.

    Chuck, KC7FEE spoke about his participation in the Lewis County search.

    Dan, KC7AVR spoke of Red Cross issues and of a request for a volunteer for an event on Saturday.

    John, KD7ISO spoke briefly on fund raising for local SAR.

    Tom, KA4VVA spoke about the yearly make-up courses that will be in January at the Thurston County Fairgrounds. He also said that the MOCK SEARCH would be in April around the 21st.

    The evening's training session commenced at 2004.

    -- Dan Crane, KB7DFL

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    Learn Chinese in 5 Minutes

    English: He's cleaning his automobile
    Chinese: Wa Shing Ka

    English: This is a tow away zone
    Chinese: No Pah King

    English: Is there a fugitive here?
    Chinese: Hu Yu Hai Ding?

    English: Small Horse
    Chinese: Tai Ni Po Ni

    English: Your price is too high!!!
    Chinese: No Bai Nut Ding!!!

    English: Did you go to the beach
    Chinese: Wai Yu So Tan?

    English: I bumped into a coffee table
    Chinese: Ai Bang Mai Ni

    English: It's very dark in here
    Chinese: Wai So Dim?

    English: Has your flight been delayed?
    Chinese: Hao Long Wei Ting?

    English: I thought you were on a diet?
    Chinese: Wai Yu Mun Ching?

    English: They have arrived
    Chinese: Hai Dei Kum

    English: Your body odor is offensive
    Chinese: Yu Stin Ki Pu

    English: You know lyrics to the Macarena?
    Chinese: Wai Yu Sing Dum Song?

    English: I got this for free
    Chinese: Ai No Pei

    English: Stay out of sight
    Chinese: Lei Lo

    -- thanks to Pat Lambirth

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    From the mouths of babes....

    The attached allegedly came from children's impressions of things biblical.

    -- found on the Internet

    -- back to table of contents

    Flight delays

    There is the story of a passenger on Britain's Imperial Airways, a company which pioneered air travel between England and Australia in the mid-1930's.

    "If you have time to spare, go by air" was the popular expression of the day. Airliners were both slow and incapable of flying long distances. One of the very first flights took off from Croydon Airport near London and flew to northern France where it was delayed extensively due to bad weather. When it arrived in the south of France, one of the engines had failed and it was necessary to wait for another engine to be shipped by sea from England.

    There were further delays along the route in Rome, Cairo, the Middle East, etc. until finally the flight progressed as far as Singapore. At this point a lady passenger asked the manager in Singapore if he thought the flight would arrive in Australia in the next few weeks because she was expecting a baby shortly.

    "My dear lady," he replied, "you should never have commenced your trip in that condition." She replied, "I didn't."

    -- 73 de W3GE

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    OARS Meeting Program Calendar for 2001

    -- by Incoming V.P. Lee Chambers, KI7SS

    Last month when I was elected V.P., I said that I needed some ideas for this year's calendar, and you gave me a few. I didn't write as fast as I should have, so if your idea isn't here please let me know and I'll try and add it to the mix. 

    In general I'd like to see our meetings include a main theme or program or two, and time for active discussions amongst the members who, for the most part, don't see each other very often. I'd like to re-institute the raffle. I'd like to re-institute, and maybe highlight, food -- except I'm not fond of donuts and coffee just before bed. So I'm thinking, maybe cake or pie or ice cream, and tea! Let me know what you think! What else can we do to liven the meetings up? Maybe a contest to see how many OARS members you can work this year -- with a prize or two at the end of the year?

    Here's my laundry list of topics (in no particular order) that, left to my 'druthers, will become this year's club meeting programs:
    DX presentation / techniques
    Project show & tell
    ARRL happenings
    Antenna selection/construction techniques -- panel discussion?
    Repeater Show & tell -- options panel discussion
    Satellite techniques
    Search & Rescue radio work
    Field day strategy -- May?

    Doubtless you notice the wide open space to the right of each topic. That's where the who, when, and what information will go. I haven't scheduled any of these, except field day will probably be in May. Schedules will be determined to some extent by availability of presenters.

    Do you know someone who would be a good presenter for one of these topics? Let me know!

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    Treasurer's Report

    As of 10/31/00

    GENERAL FUND (checking account)
      Previous balance   $ 3,757.16
        Income                 7.92
        Expenses             329.19
      Ending balance       3,439.89

    REPEATER / PACKET FUND (savings account)
      Previous balance     $ 903.99
        Income                 0.00
        Expenses               0.00
      Ending balance         903.99

    -- Ed Fitzgerald, N7WW, Treasurer

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    OARS may be featured on ARRL SSC spotlight page

    As you probably know, OARS is designated by the ARRL as a "Special Service Club" (SSC). The League has instituted a special page on its web site where every two weeks another SSC is spotlighted with a feature article.

    We have received word that OARS has been selected as a possible recipient of this honor. If the web page editor likes the text and pictures we submitted, we will have our two weeks in the spotlight.

    To check it out, and to see what other clubs have been honored, go to: http://www.arrl.org/field/club/sscspot/

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    --return to OARS home page