Fallbrook Amateur Radio Club Bulletin

An ARRL Affiliated Club
April 2017
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President --  Jon Bart - K6QVA    qvajpb@gmail.com
Vice-President -- Ron Patten - KG6HSQ    kg6hsq@fallbrookarc.org
Secretary/Treasurer -- Ken Dickson - W6MF    kpdickson@sbcglobal.net

146.175 MHZ (+) Tone 107.2 Red Mtn.
445.600 MHZ (-) Tone 107.2 Red Mtn.
Local ARES NET (Every Tuesday 7:00 pm)

FARC Web Site fallbrookarc.org
Bulletins Online fallbrookarc.org/bulletin.html

The Fallbrook Amateur Radio Club normally meet at 3:00 PM on the first Saturday of the month.

Fallbrook Amateur Radio Renewals

Name Call Date Expires

Beach, PaulWA6SY 1/31/2017

Hansen, Andre K6AH 2/28/2017

Lara, Conrad KG6JEI 2/28/2017

Byers, Jim KI6OCZ 3/31/2017

Allen, Tony
KU6E 4/30/2017

Bixby, Don
KK6SIA 4/30/2017

Durso, Chris
AA4CD 4/30/2017

Sylvester, Edward
NI6S 4/30/2017

There will be no more paper notices mailed due to the rising cost of postage and supplies.
All future notices will  be sent electronically. See Members List for your expires date.


Here is the latest news about the hands free law. When I hear more, I will pass it on to everyone
Fw: ARRL Southwestern Division e-Communicator
Dave N8KBC

Here’s an update on California’s new hands-free driving law with a little background for reference.

The prior version of Vehicle Code Section 23123.5, while it contained no specific exemption for Amateur radio, effectively excluded Hams by virtue of the relatively narrow definitions of what that law covered. Assembly Bill 1785 was introduced in February 2016 by Hayward Assembly Member Bill Quirk, whose district lies in the Pacific Division.  In its initial form, there was no adverse impact to Amateur Radio, as it applied only to reading, writing and sending text-based communications. Over the ensuing six months, however, the language was amended five times, with the end result being much broader in scope and including a prohibition of “specialized mobile radio device[s]” that were not hands-free.  This opened the door to widely varying interpretations of what might fall under the umbrella of “specialized mobile radio device[s]”.

We were first alerted to this bill by San Diego Section Manager Dave Kaltenborn, N8KBC, in September, by which time it had been passed by both houses in its final form and was less than a week from being signed into law by the governor.  Vice Director Woll tried direct outreach to Quirk’s office and to other potentially interested parties such as the California Trucking Association, but he received no responses.  As this newsworthy change in the law began getting broadcast airtime, ARRL Division and Section officials started receiving many inquiries from concerned members.  Woll contacted several of our local Volunteer Counsel attorneys, who did some research.  In addition to getting the complete legislative history of the bill, we eventually obtained a statement from a staff member of the Assembly Transportation Committee that the intent was not to include Amateur Radio and the absence of some exclusionary language was an oversight.  Meanwhile, private and public statements from members of both law enforcement and the judiciary were coming out with adverse interpretations for Amateur Radio, adding to the level of member consternation and validating our initial concerns.

State government officials will generally not engage in communication with voters outside their respective districts.  An exception may be made, however, if the voter’s own representative makes an “introduction”.  Now-retired Volunteer Counsel Len Shaffer, WA6QHD (Palmdale case attorney), requested and received such an introduction and was then able to schedule a meeting in Sacramento for himself and Vice Director Woll with Quirk’s legislative deputy.  That meeting took place on Tuesday, March 14, 2017, and future action looks promising.

Woll and Shaffer came armed with specific documentation of inconsistent interpretations, including names, dates and contact information, and the deputy appreciated this level of detail.  She advised us that her office had already been approached by lobbyists for several non-Amateur interests which also saw the new law as a threat to mobile radio communications.  Their proposed solutions, however, were industry-specific or employment-based, none of which would protect Amateur Radio.  We discussed the kinds of public service work Hams do that would be adversely impacted without some form of exemption, and she agreed that broader exclusionary language would be more appropriate than individual carve-outs.

As to the mechanics, we suggested a letter from Quirk to the state government’s Legislative Journal clarifying the legislative intent. That would provide more immediate defense for mobile radio users than would an amending bill, which is in the works (AB-1222) but would not take effect until 2018.  She told us that such a letter is being developed and agreed to advise us when it is ready to go.  We also suggested adding clarifying language to the Committee‘s omnibus bill. The deputy said they would consider doing so but  that some procedural pitfalls could eliminate that route.

Finally, the California Highway Patrol is expected to disseminate guidance within a month or two.  Through a Ham contact at the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s office, Vice Director Woll had already received a preliminary version of that guidance.  It states that using wired radio microphones would not be considered a violation but that using hand-held radios would be cause for a citation.  If the final CHP guidance comes to a similar conclusion, it will be a less-than-perfect but, in our judgment, somewhat acceptable conclusion.  The deputy also promised to advise us when that interpretation is issued in final form. Of course, CHP guidance will not filter down to all law enforcement agencies in the state, so citations by local police may still occur, and authoritative evidence of legislative intent will still be important for any Amateur who has to challenge a citation in court.

From the above, it appears that no grass-roots action is needed at this time.  However, until and unless we receive authoritative guidance to the contrary, we advise against using handheld radios while driving unless they are equipped with external, corded microphones.  As always, avoid any radio usage or other activity whenever you feel it detracts from your ability to control your vehicle fully or to maintain awareness of surrounding traffic.

ARRL Southwestern Division
Director: Richard J Norton, N6AA

International Style On-Foot T-Hunt
Saturday May 6th, 2017 Lindo Lake County Park, 12660 Lindo Lane, Lakeside,CA 92040 

Sponsored by the San Diego T-Hunt Group & CQ Magazine World Wide Fox Hunting Weekend Starting times will be 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM at 5 minute intervals.  If you start at 2:00 you will have until 3:30 to complete the course.  NO REGISTRATION  FEES!  There will be 5 hidden T’s using the MOE-MOI-MOS-MOH-MO5 format.  You will be issued a “Punch card” and there will  be orange & white flagging tape at each punch located close to the T’s which will be concealed.  Antennas will all be vertically polarized with approximately the same radiated power from each “T”.  This will be a very flat and short course compared to past hunts!  For information on “International Style Transmitter Hunting” you may go to Joe Moell, k0ov’s excellent website….. www.homingin.com/intlfox.html   We will have limited  equipment for loan for those that do not have small 2-M beams.   Bring a connector to go from your HT antenna connector to a BNC cable ( Chinese HT’s not recommended).  There will be experienced Hams present to demonstrate techniques for those that want to learn about  “On-Foot”  Amateur Radio Direction Finding (ADRF) and a “Practice T” to experiment with before you start the course.   You do not need a Ham Radio License to participate!  You will be issued a map of the area with major  features  delineated.   A compass, clipboard and pencil may be handy to plot bearings with.   Dress appropriately and plan on taking water with you while hunting.  There are several restrooms in the Park.

A BBQ is planned for about 3:00 PM for those interested.   We will have burgers & hot dogs, buns, condiments, potato salad, drinks, chips & salsa.   BBQ donations can be made on site.

For information contact : Joe Corones, N6SZO     @ H-858.484.3582, C-858.603.5545,   jcorones@gmail.com    OR… …  Joe Loughlin, KE6PHB  @ H-619.461.7845, C-619.403.3149,  ke6phb@cox.net 

Directions:  From Interstate 8 take Hwy 67 North and from E/B 52 take Hwy 67 North to the Winter Gardens Blvd. exit staying to the right.  Immediately after you turn onto Winter Gardens make a left on Woodside Ave. and go straight until you hit the Park, about 6-7 streets.   The road curves to the right and then to the left, after the left curve turn into parking lot on your left by the VFW and Park entrance.    Look for signs/banner for T-Hunting towards the back end of the parking lot.  Coordinates are 32° 51’ 24” N, 116° 55’ 07” W.    

de W6SJL
FEMA and Hams
 From the ARRL Newsletter March 2, 2017
 FEMA Needs Experienced New Administrator, Former Head KK4INZ Tells Lawmakers

Now-former Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate, KK4INZ, told a US House subcommittee this week that the agency needs to have a new and experienced administrator soon, or it could lose its forward momentum. That sentiment was echoed by House members during a February 28 hearing on FEMA's future held by the House Homeland Security Committee's Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications Subcommittee.

"It's not a good job to do on-the-job-training," Fugate told lawmakers. "It's too brutal, and the citizens deserve better." He said that whoever ends up heading the agency should understand that FEMA's role in disaster response "is not about putting FEMA in charge."

"My parting advice for the FEMA team was to continue going big, going early, going fast, and being smart about it," Fugate said in his written testimony. The new FEMA head should build upon "the strides the agency has made since [Hurricane] Katrina." During his time at FEMA, from 2009 until this January, Fugate was a strong supporter of Amateur Radio as a communication resource in disasters.

The hearing was the second in a series that will provide recommendations to the next FEMA Administrator. Former FEMA Administrator R. David Paulison also testified. The officially vacant position is being filled for now by Robert Fenton Jr., FEMA's Region IX administrator.

In a recent interview on HamRadioNow, Fugate focused on Amateur Radio's role in disasters, explaining to host Gary Pearce, KN4AQ, how he became familiar with emergency management from the ground up, first as volunteer firefighter and paramedic in Florida, and then as head of Alachua County's emergency management program for 10 years. That experience, he said, "was my first intersection with Amateur Radio." He eventually self-studied for his license and passed the test after arriving in Washington.

He told Pearce that FEMA supports state, local, and tribal governments in emergencies and disasters, and will work with whatever resources are available. While it has taken advantage of radio amateurs and signed a Memorandum of Understanding with ARRL in 2014, the agency looks at Amateur Radio "a bit differently."

"We'll work with whoever's up and operating," said Fugate, who has not quite taken off his FEMA hat. He said that could be an ARES group, a RACES group, or an individual radio amateur who may have key information coming out of an area hit by an emergency.

"Training is great," he told Pearce. "We shouldn't think it's exclusionary." He said FEMA needs to remain open to any Amateur Radio resource available, "because that person may be the only one up and running."

Fugate told Pearce that under his watch, FEMA tried to be inclusionary, taking advantage of the entire spectrum of radio amateurs, not just the institutionalized emergency communication organizations. "If you have the luxury of being exclusionary," he said, "it's probably not a bad disaster." Fugate said that while he favors formal emergency communications training, those completing the courses may not always be available when a disaster strikes.

Fugate said now that he's home in Florida, he is hoping to have more opportunities to pursue his interest in digital modes. He belongs to the Gainesville Amateur Radio Society (GARS).

de W6VR
Tesla Autopilot crash caught on dashcam shows how not to use the system | Electrek
We are going to see much more video like this as 'self driving cars' are introduced: https://electrek.co/2017/03/02/tesla-autopilot-crash-video-how-note-to-use/ Note the great philosophical sentence in the writeup:
"Ultimately, it serves as a reminder not to trust the system without paying attention." That bit of wisdom applies to just about everything in life.
California Releases Cellphone Radiation Exposure Fact Sheet Draft « CBS San Francisco
The just-released California Cellphone Radiation Exposure Fact Sheet (Draft) can be seen here... https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B14R6QNkmaXuRmJlZDRWME5lN2M/view ...and the story behind it is here: http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2017/03/02/cellphone-radiation-exposure-fact-sheet-draft-released-by-california-health-officials/
A Growing RFI Problem
Extract from Amateur Radio Newsline Report 2054 for Friday, March 10, 2017:


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: Our report begins this week with an RFI detective story. We've all experienced interference on the bands - but one ham in Maine followed its trail and found a rather unconventional source. Amateur Radio Newsline's Kent Peterson KC-ZERO-DGY (KC0DGY) spoke to him.

ROGER: It first started about three years ago I have a pan adapter and was looking at the 160 meter band which is the band I operate most. I noticed down at the end of the band was a strange looking signal down there and wondered what heck was that? Then later on as the season went on this signal gradually kept increasing.

KENT That's Roger Johnson N1RJ of Limington Maine talking about his discovery of RFI on his favorite ham band.

ROGER I went on the web and found out it was pretty much the signature of a switched mode power supply. I found out this was probably a a grow light. Since these grow light ballasts operate at power levels up to thousand watts. A lot of them are ordered from the far east and have fake FCC compliance stickers, so there's no filtering built into these things at all.

KENT Johnson's hunt for the interference was on.

ROGER I started to do some DFing I made a SDR receiver and started driving around until I found the guy. I went up and talked with him. A nice young guy who was astonished to find out he was creating interference to someone a mile away. He showed me all around his grow operation, he has a marijuana grow license and he's very proud of his operation. I got to thinking about that, I don't want to report him to the FCC because they'll issue him to cease and desist order, he'll have 30 days solve the problem or or shut down. How is he going to solve the problem he's not an RF guy? He bought these ballasts in good faith, but they have a false FCC sticker on them. If he goes out and buys new ballasts, there is nothing assuring him he'll not get another batch of bad ballasts. He's providing a service and he's doing it honestly and complying with Maine law.

KENT Johnson estimated this guy could be looking at an additional thousand dollar expense to filter his ballasts. He went on to tell me he proposed legislation to get the state to ban ballasts that produced interference. His suggestion was for out-of-compliance ballasts to be refunded or replaced with a units that doesn't�t produce noise, but that proposal died in the Maine Senate. Johnson pointed out the FCC had about 300 field engineers back in 1960, today that number now sits at 43.

ROGER: What are the chances getting a field engineer to drive five or six hundred miles on a complaint some ham has to interference complaint from grow lights? I think it is nil.

ROGER: With Maine and more and more states legalizing these grow of marijuana I can see these small time guy these are going to spring up like mad. These things legally cannot be imported since they don't meet the rules for conducted radiated interference. But no one is minding the store, They're bringing in these things by the thousands if these grow operations take off. It is going to get a lot worse before it gets better. If they just keep issuing letters to these offenders, they're going to run out of stationery pretty soon because there's going to be too many of them.

Reporting for Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Kent Peterson.
Radio World: Online Radio Listening Continues Steady Climb Online radio continues to grow to slowly become the "new radio:"
FCC Consumer Alert re "Yes"

Creepy IoT teddy bear leaks >2 million parents’ and kids’ voice messages
The lesson that emerged long ago is that the security of so-called Internet of things products is so poor https://arstechnica.co.uk/security/2016/01/how-to-search-the-internet-of-things-for-photos-of-sleeping-babies/
 that it often outweighs any benefit afforded by an Internet-connected appliance. As the CloudPets debacle underscores, the creep factor involved in Internet-connected toys makes the proposition even worse.
Uber’s self-driving cars ran through 6 stoplights in California, NY Times says
Turning the water on in a sink can launch pipe-climbing superbugs
AxiDraw -  This robotic pen can draw the most satisfying shapes
Food scientists weigh in on 50% Subway chicken test—it’s 100% weird
Or, why you shouldn't get your science from news shows.
Or your pickup testing:
FCC chair wants carriers to block robocalls from spoofed numbers
Malware found preinstalled on 38 Android phones used by 2 companies
Magnetic storage reaches the atomic level
Oleo sponge invented at Argonne National Laboratory can sop up oil in a spill
Amazing how effective (and reusable) it is!
How ISPs can sell your Web history—and how to stop them
The Senate has already passed a bill allowing ISPs to sell your browsing data. It now goes to the House. What marketing companies can get, anyone can get (and misinterpret). Think everything from divorce proceedings to targeted marketing phone calls to where your children go to school and how they get there. Your ISP not only has your browsing history, but all your contact information and SSN to sell. Once the information is aggregated it can be used for both "good" and evil. https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2017/03/how-isps-can-sell-your-web-history-and-how-to-stop-them/

The ARES E-Letter
Letter at: www.arrl.org/ares-el?issue=current

Interesting gadgets I wish I had time for
By Dan Romanchik, KB6NU

I’m on a lot of mailing lists and participate in a bunch of amateur radio forums. As a result, I see a lot of interesting gadgets that guys are buying or are thinking about buying. Here are three of the latest that look interesting to me. I wish I had time (and money) to purchase all of these and try them out.

Android antenna analyzer

On Reddit link, some of the guys have been talking about the Mini60 Antenna Analyzer link. Its frequency range is 1 – 60MHz, but the cool thing about this device is that you can use it standalone with the built-in LCD display or with some software link and a tablet with a Bluetooth interface to get fancy frequency vs. SWR plots. Of course, this is made in China, but how can you beat the price? It costs $112 shipped.

Multi-functional component tester

Here’s another marvel of Chinese engineering and manufacture – a smart component tester link for only $30, shipped. It identifies and characterizes NPN and PNP transistors, capacitors, resistors, diodes (including Zener diodes), N-channel and P-channel MOSFET, IGBT, JFET, triacs, and batteries.
This isn’t the first smart component tester to hit the market, but the unique thing about this unit is that it has a graphical display that not only identifies the type of component that you’ve connected to it, but also draws the schematic symbol of the part. You can see a video of this tester in action at link.

Make your Raspberry Pi into a desktop PC

Newark/element 14 will soon start selling a kit of part that will make it easier to turn your Raspberry Pi into a desktop PC link. The kit includes:
    •    Intelligent and Safe Power Controller
    •    Interface to connect mSATA SSD (upto 1TB)
    •    Real Time Clock to keep track of time
    •    Heat Sink
    •    Enclosure

They don’t list the price just yet, but this might be what I need to actually make use of the Raspberry Pi 3 I bought several months ago.

If you have one of these gadgets, or buy one in the future, please let me know how you like it. I'll put your review up on my blog, so that everyone can benefit from your experience.


When he's not drooling over electronic gadgets, Dan blogs about amateur radio at KB6NU.Com, writes the "No Nonsense" amateur radio study guides, and teaches ham classes. You can contact him by e-mailing cwgeek@kb6nu.com.

Fallbrook Amateur Radio Club
Roy Noon Hall, Fallbrook, California
March 4, 2017

The meeting was called to order by President Jon Bart, K6QVA, at 1500.

The Pledge was recited.

Ken, W6MF, gave the following financial report.

Balance January 31, 2017 $ 5,440.55
Petty Cash Balance January, 2017       $54.78


Membership Dues  $60.00


January Income Error Dues reported as $60.00
should have been $40.00

ARRL Dues $47.00
Repeater Parts/Equipment $53.39
Total  $120.39

Petty Cash Balance January 31, 2017  $54.78
Cash Income (Donation/Equipment)  $10.00
Expenses February 2017     $0.00

Checking Balance February 28, 2017  $5,429.16
Petty Cash Balance February, 2016     $64.78

Ron, KG6HSQ, updated the membership on repairs to the 2 meter repeater. A Power Amplifier problem has been rectified and the repeater is now back on the air in full operation. Ron announced that there was a sheet circulating during the meeting for members to volunteer for the upcoming Avocado Festival in April. He said there has been one Chamber meeting regarding the Avo festival and another has been scheduled. It appears that the setup will be very much the same as in the past.

There is currently a simplex net (145.555) on Tuesday evenings immediately following the ARES net. This net has been meeting weekly for a time now and there was a question as to whether to continue the net or not? There was not a vote taken but the general consensus was to continue the net. (This is a good practice for FARC in case communications are lost on the repeater during an emergency - As with the ARES Net all members and guest are invited to check into this net.)

Brent, KJ6UMY, presented a slide show of a trip to the Yuma (AZ) Hamfest that he, Forrest, KK6BYR and Tony, KU6E recently took. They said it was a very good show and there were some very expensive and large number of very nice raffle ticket prizes. The slide show showed a number of the activities associated with the Fest. It is held at the Yuma Fairgrounds and there is always ample, free parking. The entry fee for the entire event is $5.00 and they found that most of the items for sale at the site were very reasonable. The last event of the Fest is the "Buzzard Dinner" for a fee of $10.00. All went well with the Fest except it does rain in Arizona at times and this was one of those times.

John, W6JBR, talked about activating a couple of sites during the National Parks On The Air (NPOTA) event. NPOTA was the 100th year celebration of the US National Parks system. The program started January 1, 2016 and ended December 31, 2016. (There were around 500 sites listed, approximately 1,400 amateurs were "Activators", and there were over 14,000 "Chasers" during the event.)

With no further business the meeting adjourned at 1600.

Ken Dickson, W6MF
Fallbrook Amateur Radio Club

New Member:
Cecil Knudsen, KE6FYB

Member Dropped:
Eric Ortega KJ6MTH

Technical Committee: Bob-W6VR, Chris-AA4CD, Daryl-WA5QMV, Ron-KG6HSQ, Brent-KJ6UMY

Duane, AA6EE is offering FARC members discount prices on ARRL items:
Duane, AA6EE is offering FARC members the Callbook 2017 Winter Edition CD for $6.95 if order confirmed by 3/30. PayPal available for immediate shipping.
Duane Heise, AA6EE
16832 Whirlwind #F
Ramona CA 92065
(760) 789-3674
Callbook & ARRL distributor for 30 years
Any other ARRL item available @ discount: e-mail for price.
Email: aa6ee@cox.net
CA residents: add tax.
--- Callbook 2017 Winter Edition CD---
  • Run directly from CD, no installation needed
  • More than 1,600,000 listings
  • More than 60,000 QSL manager listings
  • Displays the station location on more than 250 detailed amateur radio maps including maps for all U.S. states
  • Online help for each screen
  • Label printing facility
  • Beam headings & distance information
  • Many additional features
Comments and items of interest for publishing should be directed to: N6FQ@fallbrookarc.org
Ron Patten - KG6HSQ

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