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Discussion of general interest including club business and events. Please post ARES discussion in the SC4ARES group.

2015 Field Day

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    Annual Field Day is almost here. If you aren’t familiar with it: The last full weekend in June hams across the US and Canada participate in a 24 hour drill/contest to see how many contacts they can makes with an emphasis on portable and off-grid set ups. It’s also a public outreach event, a social event and an excellent opportunity for amateurs who have little or no HF operating experience to try their hand at something new. Since we will have Extra class control operators on hand, everyone who participates will operate under Extra class privileges. Since there are so many North American hams on the air it’s really easy to make contacts.

    This year we plan to operate with most of the same equipment as last year, so we will be recycling much of last year’s plans (Thanks, Neil!) Linda will be in charge of Logistics which includes making certain that we have everything in place and ready for our club members to begin operating Saturday, June 27, at 1100 PDT. To simulate the rapid deployment necessary in an emergency, we will start setting up no sooner than Friday, June 26, at 1100 PDT. From the start of operations Saturday, 1100 PDT until cessation Sunday at 1100 PDT Mike will be in charge of operations. Since no club event would be complete without a kicking meal: A pot luck dinner is scheduled to begin at 1900 PDT on Saturday. Jeneen will organize this so we don’t wind up with 17 people bringing carrot salads (I was going to say chocolate cakes, but I don’t think anyone would mind 17 chocolate cakes.).

    We have a schedule (link below) which includes some special events like clinics and classes and (hopefully) contact with the International Space Station. Please look it over and see if any of the activities might interest you. We’ve tried to accommodate a range of interests. Please do come early and stay late so you can take a turn operating a radio or logging for an operator. If you’ve never operated HF or if you’re feeling rusty or if you might want to try something different like PSK31 then feel free to make use of our Get On The Air station set up just for those purposes. GOTA is a low key, non contest station just for goofing around with no pressure or expectations. We will have a patient, experienced control operator at the GOTA station to coach you as you make your first contacts (in fact you don’t even need a license since we supply the control operator, so UN-licensed folks are welcome too. Bring the kids.) For an extra bit of reassurance, we will hold a “knobology” class Saturday, June 20, where you can try out all of the knobs and learn what they do. The knobology class is the third Saturday in June, when we would normally have our club meeting. I’ll post the details separately.

    One of our first orders of business is making an inventory of what we have in the res-horse trailer. Linda will organize this shortly.

    Please include all of your posts and comments concerning this year’s Field Day under this topic to make them easier to find and reference in the future. I include here links to important documents you may want to review:

    Jeneen, W6NCS

    Food for Field Day

    Bring your own food (or buy from the store) for lunch on Saturday and Sunday. Bring some snacks as well, for late night muchies, and wine or beer if you want it. Dinner on Saturday will be potluck around the campfire @ 19:00. Signups are below, and I will update this post as I get signups so you only have to look in one place to see what’s needed. Bob has generously offered to haul his infrared grill down to the Gardens, so you might want to consider something grillable. We will have a propane burner available as well if you want to heat something up. For those staying the night, Sunday breakfast will be cheese and herb cornbread with scrambled eggs and grilled sausages @ 08:00.

    Potluck Signups

    Main (meat): Bob, Paul (grilled chicken & sausages)
    Main (vegetarian): Mary (chili)
    Salad: Jack McK (fruit), Jeneen (green)
    Sides (veggie): Pat, Jack (grilled veggies)
    Sides (starchy): Lisa (root veggies), Adda (potato casserole)
    Bread: Jeneen
    Dessert: Lisa
    Non-Alcoholic drinks:

    Mary, AF6IE

    Main Vegetarian Chili

    Bob, W6RES

    Main Meat; open to suggestions. London Broil or Chateaubriand would be my first guess; we could easily add chicken or sausage or… ?

    Paul, KJ6MPZ

    if Bob ia bringing his grill, I will bring chicken boobs to grill… I uaually bring lasagna but this would be a nice change, and maybe some sausages as a nice appetizer .


    I will bring some kind of vegetarian dish.

    Jack, KK6MLA

    I will bring fruit salad and grill able veggies

    Lisa, W6LSC

    I will bring a couple of desserts, and some roasted roots for the starchy side dish.

    Adda, KU1NNA

    We will bring a potato casserole dish and a couple other things tbd for Field Day.


    I want to highlight some of our activities and classes for this year’s Field Day.

    • Packet Radio Class (Saturday 1300h – 1400h): Bob, W6RES will give an introduction to packet radio operation including a demonstration of WinLink email via amateur radio.
    • Deviation Clinic (Saturday 1500h – 1600h): We’ll bring out the old FM deviation meter for a chance to test your voice, your microphones and, if you’re setting up your packet station, your (important) transmit levels.
    • Tape Measure Yagi (Saturday 1630h – 1730h): Mike, KJ6VCP will repeat this popular, hands on demonstration where participants build their own directional antenna using hardware store parts. This was a hit last year, and we hope to finish the demonstration by…
    • Contacting the ISS (Saturday 1730h): Using the skills learned that afternoon (packet radio, directional antenna) participants will exchange a QSL via the packet transponder aboard the International Space Station. The fly-by time is subject to change so keep an eye on this forum for updates!
    • Copy ARRL Bulletin (Saturday, 1830h – 1900h): Peter, KI6FAO will copy the official ARRL message to all Field Day stations sent via HF digital messaging. If you are interested in sending and receiving digital, text messages on the HF frequencies (long reach without repeaters) be sure to drop by and see how it’s done.
    • PL-259 Clinic (Sunday 0800h): We’ll have the soldering irons and crimp tools out bright and early in the morning to repair your broken cables and make up new ones. Learn how to make your own cables up in the lengths you need for less than buying new. Hot coffee will be available for all you early risers and late RF revelers.

    So mark your calendars. Set your alarm clocks. Be sure to be there or you’ll have to wait another year if you miss these opportunities. I welcome your comments.


    There is a really nice ISS Pass Saturday morning just before 11am ( )

    Technically, Field Day operations haven’t started at that time, but we can say hello anyways 🙂

    The later passes in the evening will only be about 30 degrees above the horizon. We will try, but they will be tricky from the bottom of the Canyon.

    27 Jun – 10:51:34 10° SSW 10:54:40 46° SE 10:57:48 10° ENE daylight
    27 Jun – 17:20:50 10° NNW 17:23:39 27° NNE 17:26:28 10° E daylight
    27 Jun – 18:57:11 10° WNW 19:00:01 28° SW 19:02:50 10° SSE daylight


    Fantastic Mike! Sign me up!


    For the tape measure Yagi activity on Saturday, we will be building an antenna from scratch, and testing it.


    Remember to bring camping chairs for Saturday evening potluck.

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