Fallbrook Amateur Radio Club Bulletin

An ARRL Affiliated Club
December 2017
Logo if you are logged into internet
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.

No December Meeting, Club will be helping with logistics of the Christmas Parade.

Fallbrook Amateur Radio Renewals

Name Call Date Expires

Badolian, Shawn KK6NLZ 8/31/2017

Parkinson, Bill KI6KVD 8/31/2017

Donlevy, Al W6GNI 9/30/2017

Dudar, Gary K6GAD 10/31/2017

Foy, Bill
N6OUI 12/31/2017

Harrison, Kermit
K6MY 12/31/2017

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.



Looking For Missing Experimental Balloon And Payload

de W6VR
How to protect yourself from downloading fake apps and getting hacked
Android phones and fake apps. That’s what this story is all about and this is a big reason to favor Apple over android although no smartphone should be considered 100% impervious to hacking. For example, I keep a small piece of tape over the camera on the glass screen of my iPad Pro — you can never be too careful these days!
SDG&E cameras prove to be critical fire watch tool for region
Following is an article on the new HPWREN PTZ (pan, tilt and zoom) cameras as reported on page C-10 of the latest (November 16, 2017) Fallbrook Village News. Video from some of the local cameras can be viewed at...
Blocking Robocalls - FCC Action
KFC's Colonel embraces a communications cone of silence
A questionable marketing campaign:

Get Smart Cone Of Silence
FCC Votes to Speed Transition From Copper to Fiber | Radio magazine

USS McCain collision ultimately caused by UI confusion
Confusing user interfaces have a price.
Opening a 1940s Monopoly War Time Edition
Hacking the vote: Threats keep changing, but election IT sadly stays the same
Electronic voting systems are managed by people with no computer literacy. I remember the one time they were used here. The lady setting up the system was trying to plug a USB scanner into an ethernet port (yes, you can jam it in there sideways).
LavaRand in Production: The Nitty-Gritty Technical Details
This is CloudFlare's random number generator based upon Lava Lamps (really).
Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cUUfMeOijg
Drone Fighter Carrier Operations
Cryptojacking craze that drains your CPU now done by 2,500 sites
Hairy situation: DC’s rail system may be taken down by human shedding
The solution: http://neu-inc.com/vacuum-cleaning-train/
Robocalls from spoofed Caller IDs may soon be blocked by phone companies
"But carriers can charge you extra"
Cosmoline Still Exists!
Was listening to Car Talk and got curious. http://www.cosmolinedirect.com/
No, you’re not being paranoid. Sites really are watching your every move
Logging keystorkes, mouse movements. In intelligence analysis, think correlation, not collection.
Lightning strikes leave behind a radioactive cloud
Don’t lose a finger: The 200-year evolution of the can opener
Kind of wanting more detail, but interesting.
Battleship Guns: "16 Inch Gun & Turret" 1955 US Navy Training Film for Iowa Class Battleships

de  KJ6AEU
Date Placed: 10/08/17
Name: Carl
Phone Number: 760-822-5040
Callsign: AG6X
Category: ANTHF
Heading: FREE; Two 65' vertical antennas
Ad Message:     FREE to first person ready to remove two 65' verticals on tilt over bases. 3.5" at the bottom and 1" at the top. made from beefy Telrex yagi booms and pieces. I used these for my 160/80 meter phased array
    antennas located in fallbrook. each antenna is approx 125 lbs and can be lowered by any vehicle a receiver type hitch in a matter of minutes.
Call me ASAP to arrange pick up time. 73 Carl AG6X

T-8: I’m Not Really Feeling The Magic
By: Dan Romanchik, KB6NU

Partly out of curiosity and partly because my friend Jeff, KE9V, shamed me into it, I setup my Signalink interface, downloaded WSJT-X from https://physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/k1jt/wsjtx.html, and started operating FT-8, the latest “shiny object” (as the ARRL dubbed it) from the K1JT team. As you probably know, this mode has really caught on with the digital crowd, and the waterfall is chock full of FT-8 signals. Part of the reason for this is that it has some of the characteristics of JT-65, but is not as excruciatingly slow.

    CAPTION: A waterfall display generated by WSJT-X at 7:30 pm, 11/23/17.

Over the past couple of days, I’ve made 32 QSOs, including a couple of DX contacts. It’s been fun to try something new, but to be honest, I’m not really feeling the magic.
Part of it is that I don’t feel like I’m really doing anything. I downloaded the software, plugged in my digital interface, fooled around with the settings a bit, and then, the computer started making contacts. I have to click a few on-screen controls to make contacts, but even that’s a step that could be easily programmed in by the WSJT-X developers. (In fact, I wonder why they haven’t done that already!)

  CAPTION: WSJT-X screenshot. The sequence of transmissions in the Rx Frequency window comprises a contact.

Take a look at the screenshot above to see how a typical contact happens. When a CQ appears in the “Band Activity” window, you double click on it. When you do this, the software begins listening for signals on that frequency. In this case, I double-clicked on the CQ by WA9THI. When I double-clicked on the CQ, the program began decoding signals on that frequency and display the transmissions in the “Rx Frequency” window.

Then, I clicked on “Enable TX” and the program began the contact sequence, sending “WA9THI KB6NU EN82.” EN82 is my grid designator. This is shown as the first yellow line in the Rx Frequency window. The transmissions that I sent are highlighted in yellow. The transmissions sent by WA9THI are highlighted in red.

The sequence of transmissions shown there comprise a complete contact, and that whole process takes less than two minutes. And, once WA9THI received my first transmission, the sequence is all automatic. You just sit there and watch the two computers talk to one another.

While I can certainly appreciate the thought and the work that went into the design of the protocol and programming to implement it, sitting and watching the computers talk to one another just doesn’t excite me. On the other hand, if you’re one of those guys who wants to make contacts, but doesn’t really want to talk to anyone, than this is the mode for you!

Here are a few more notes about FT-8 operation:
    • Not surprisingly, synchronizing your computer with the other stations computer is very important. To do that, you need to get your computer to use the network time protocol (NTP). I failed to do this when I first installed WSJT-X, and while my waterfall was full of FT-8 signals, WSJT-X just wouldn’t decode them.
    • I got my PC laptop to talk ntp by installing Meinberg NTP software (http://www.ntp.org/ntpfaq/NTP-s-def.htm). Once I did that, WSJT-X magically started decoding transmissions.
    • Most of the cool guys seem to be using Meinberg NTP, but there are other options. One of the guys in our club is using a program called Dimension 4, for example.
    • Apparently, you don’t have to limit your power output as you would with PSK-31. At first, I set my output power to 10 W. I had a bit of success at 10 W, but I expected more. When I asked on Twitter how much power other guys were using, most of them said that they were using more than that.
    • For the last couple of sessions, I’ve been setting my output power to 25 W, and I’ve been having more success. I've now worked several Europeans on 30m.
    • Even at 25 W, my signal reports are more often than not not as good as the signal reports I’m handing out. I haven’t figured this one out yet. This doesn’t happen to me when I’m operating CW, so I don’t think it’s my antenna.
    • When I’m operating, I write down the calls of stations I’ve contacted. The reason for this is that while WSJT-X does have a logging function, it doesn’t have a log window, so unless you have a great memory, you could end up working guys two or three times a session. That’s probably not a big deal since contacts are so quick, but I’d rather avoid doing that if I can.
    • WSJT-X works “split.” While most contacts take place on the same frequency, a station can call you anywhere in the passband of your receiver and WSJT-X will decoded the signal and begin a contact. This threw me the first time or two that this happened, and I tried to change my transmit frequency to match the other station’s. In doing so, I messed up the sequence. I now just let the contact proceed normally, and it works out great.
    • When I work the other digital modes, I set my IC-746PRO to the USB-D mode. In this mode, the receive passband is narrower than for working phone. When operating FT-8, however, you don’t want to limit that passband. Signals will appear across the entire 2.6 kHz of the USB signal, and if you narrow the passband, you won’t be able to work those stations.
    • WSJT-X checks the validity of call signs. This afternoon, there was a guy who had typed in his call as “WAMAD” and was calling CQ. WSJT-X wouldn’t let me answer that CQ.
    • Operating this mode opens up the possibility of working more stations whose callsigns spell words and adding those QSL cards to my collection. I have, for example, already worked K1GUY, N4HER, and N5SLY. I’m guessing that these guys don’t operate CW.
All told, I’ve found this to be an interesting foray into a new digital mode. While I’m not feeling the magic that some others seem to be feeling when operating FT-8, it certainly will be a change of pace to operate this mode from time to time. Give it a shot and tell me what you think.

Dan, KB6NU, is the author of the “No Nonsense” amateur radio license study guides and blogs about amateur radio at KB6NU.Com. When he's not working FT-8, he teaches ham radio classes and operates CW on the HF bands. You can email him at cwgeek@kb6nu.com.

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

Fallbrook Amateur Radio Club

Roy Noon Hall, Fallbrook, California
November 4, 2017
Vice-President Ron Patten, KG6HSQ, called the meeting to order at 1500

The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

All members and guest introduced themselves.

Ron Announced that Bob Gill, KD6LVF, has advanced to Extra Class. Bob also has a new call, W6RMG. Congratulations Bob!

A signup sheet is available for volunteers to work the Christmas Parade on December 2nd. Due to the parade there will be no FARC meeting on December 2nd. On November 11th the VFW will hold its annual Veteran's Day Parade and a couple of volunteers are needed for that event. Staging for the parade will begin at 9:00AM and the parade starts promptly at 10:15.

Bill, N6OUI, informed the membership of a proposed huge water rate increase at FPUD (Fallbrook Public Utility District). FPUD has sent letters to its users explaining the increases over the next few years and it will more than double the current rate. Bill asked all users to make a written response to FPUD asking for this rate to not be put into effect. There will be a meeting at FPUD but protest at that meeting will not be counted in the protest count, protest must be written. All protest must be written and on the outside of the envelope write, "Water Rate Increase". It must be noted according to information from FPUD for the response to be counted. Rather than a simple increase each year the last years rate will be used each increase to figure the rate increase for the following year, thus the rate is compounded rather that figuring from an established base rate. So, please write your letter of protest to FPUD before November 18, 2017.

Ken, W6MF, gave the following financial report

Checking Balance September 30, 2017  $6,298.75
Petty Cash Balance September 30, 2017       $49.78
Total $6,348.53


ARRL Dues  $49.00
Membership Dues  $80.00
Total $129.00


Annual Liability Insurance $300.00
Field Day Expenses $168.57
ARRL Dues Payment     $47.00
Total  $515.57

Petty Cash Balance September 30, 2017 $49.78
Expenses October 2017   0.00
Total $49.78

Checking Balance September 30, 2017  $5,912.18
Petty Cash Balance September 30, 2017     $49.78
Total $5,961.96

Member Dropped: Hal Potter, KF6FHL

Ron said that there was still noise on the FARC 2 meter repeater. He has been unable to determine the source and feels that it may possibly be weather related. It is intermittent. He has determined that the noise is not being generated by our equipment.

Ron has been attending the Chamber of Commerce meetings regarding the Christmas Parade. He indicated that the parade will basically be the same as in years past. He presented a map showing various points of the Staging and Band locations and described the staging process along Ammunition Ave. At present there are 42 entries and 3 bands. A request has been made for a color guard but there will not be a Marine Corp band this year. There will be limited parking at Albertson's. Automobiles parked there could be ticketed so radio operators are advised to park behind the Chamber of Commerce office. Net control will probably be at the Starbuck's parking lot as in the past but this location is subject to change as well. Most of the Chamber of Commerce parade marshals are veterans so the parade should be well managed.

The program was a very entertaining and informative program. A Tour of Red Mountain. Ron had assembled a very large "Fly-Over" of Red Mountain and a large area of the country around the mountain including a many locations around and on Camp Pendleton. He had various sites and points of interest identified on the map as the fly-over covered the area. Following the Red Mountain tour another fly-over was shown. This map showed the location of amateur radio operators in the area. Ron had used a Google Earth mapping program to produce both of the fly-over's.

With no further business the meeting was adjourned at 1550.

Ken Dickson, W6MF
Fallbrook Amateur Radio Club

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 2018 Winter Edition CD for $29.95. Mention FARC & a bonus USB stick will be included if order confirmed by 12/02. Price includes shipping. PayPal available.
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
  • Retail $49.95
Comments and items of interest for publishing should be directed to: N6FQ@fallbrookarc.org
Ron Patten - KG6HSQ

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