Socorro Amateur Radio
SARA Newsletter ----- "All the news that fits, we print"
----- January, 1997
Traditionally, the December SARA meeting coincides with the
annual Christmas Banquet. That tradition was observed again this
year on the evening of Wednesday, December 11, with some 30
(including SARA's youngest and best behaved member, James
Bateman) attended a fine evening of food and socializing at
K-Bob's in Socorro. A "thank you" to Jon (KC5NTW) who made the
arrangements again this year.
President Howard Peavey (K9PV) took the floor to present the
awards for the past year. These awards were in the form of
handsome framed certificates prepared by Monte (WB5RZX). This
year the Socorro Amateur Radio Association recognizes the
outstanding service of:
Paul Harden (NA5N) - We appreciate your willingness to
share your talents and time with others through Elmering, and by
teaching "The Art of QRP" to hams around the world;
Paul Rhodes (N5YGC) - We appreciate your willingness to
serve as ARES Coordinator for SARA, and for being our "Chief
Signmaster" for numerous hamfests;
Kalman Oravecz (AJ5B) - We appreciate your willingness
in conducting countless VE exams, and for continuing to serve as
SARA's "Chief Examiner;"
Ryan Snyder (KC5WDT) - We appreciate your help this year
and your enthusiasm in taking on the SARA digipeater. Thanks for
your enthusiasm and support;
Felix Barreras (W5BX) - Repeater Maker Award; we
recognize Felix for all the work he did in overhauling SARA's
146.68 repeater. We appreciate his hard work in bringing this
project to completion; and
Dave Johnson (KB5YIW) - SARA's Vice President, Repeater
Boss, Hamfest Honcho, Fat Tire Fiesta Coordinator, IRS Agent,
and, most of all, Newsletter Creator.
"... Ham City ..." Kudos
The appearance of Dave Finley's (N1IRZ) article Socorro New
Mexico - Ham City USA? in the December issue of QST elicited much
positive comment from those attending the SARA/TARA Hamfest
[including Marshall Quiat (AG0X), ARRL Rocky Mountain Division
Director]. Walt Stinson (W0CP, ARRL Rocky Mountain Division Vice
Director) sent an email message saying, "the SARA article turned
out great! Congratulations... ." The article has also generated
messages and greetings from friends and former colleagues who
have departed Socorro. Included among these were messages from
Scott Hogin (K7DHF) listed in Flagstaff, AZ; and Carl Preddy
(formerly WB4NNO, currently KU2N) now residing in Rochester
One important item that will be under consideration at the
January SARA meeting will be drafts of the proposed Articles of
Incorporation and a revised Bylaws for SARA. Incorporation is a
step required to obtain tax exempt status for the association.
The process will require fundamental revisions to SARA's
governance and warrants everyone's participation. Please plan on
attending if you can. SARA's existing constitution (Art. VI,
Amendments) stipulates that, "Proposals for amendments shall be
submitted in writing at a regular meeting and shall be voted on
at the next regular meeting, provided all members have been
notified by mail of the intent to amend the constitution and/or
bylaws at said meeting. A two-thirds vote of the membership
present shall then be necessary to amend." Accordingly, the
revised documents could be considered by the membership at the
February meeting (on 2/12/97). There will be an update in the
February SARA Newsletter. Mark your calendars.
Antenna Height Restrictions Here?
According to comments made during a meeting of the Socorro County
Commissioners on December 10th, a proposed zoning ordinance,
submitted for the Commission's approval last year, includes a
height restriction of 35 feet for structures (presumably
including amateur radio antennas) erected in the county. It is
highly unlikely that this ordinance will be adopted as written
since the provision essentially eliminates construction of
functional windmills on ranch lands, but it is clear that amateur
radio operators in the county should become involved in the
revision process if they wish to have a document that reflects
To date the process of fashioning the county's approach to
zoning has been a very open one with citizen input invited at
many open meetings. Problems have arisen because those who favor
zoning have been the ones who attended the meetings, while those
with no interest in zoning have avoided them. In the coming
months we should expect a much more balanced discussion. SARA
members should be part of that discussion. (D. Johnson)
Which County is this?
Some time ago, Felix (W5BX) noticed that many Socorro amateur
radio operators were listed as residing in Sierra County by the
QRZ Callsign Server (http://www.qrz.com). After being
notified of the discrepancy, Fred Lloyd (AA7BQ), author of the
QRZ Ham Radio CDROM, indicated that the problem was fixed. You
might like to check out your entry if you get a chance.
As reported in the December SARA Newsletter, there have been some
changes to the 70 cm repeater population in Socorro. During the
third week of December, Bob (WB5QZD) installed the 444.275+
machine on the front peak of Socorro Peak. Because of
interference from the SEC radios, the PL of 123.7 Hz has been
installed. This machine and location offers unparalleled
coverage to the City of Socorro as well as good coverage of
surrounding areas. If you have a 70 cm capability, check this
one out. The 444.750+ MHz machine continues to be in operation.
This machine will have a range limited largely to the immediate
Socorro area, but it does have crossband capabilities and once a
2 m antenna has been installed, it should be routinely linked to
the 146.68+ (Socorro) repeater. If you would like to have this
machine linked to other nearby 2 m repeaters for short periods,
you may contact either Bob or Dave (KB5YIW) to change the
FYBO Winter QRP Field Day
Hear Ye, Hear Ye! Here it is folks, the formal announcement of
the event which will prove once and for all that "QRP is not for
Sissies." :-) Yes, it's the FYBO (Freeze Your B____ Off) Winter
QRP Field Day, sponsored by the Arizona ScQRPions. This event
comes replete with some special considerations for participants
(awards, a temperature multiplier and extra points for QSO's made
by novices in their sub-bands). To spice things up, there will
be a random drawing from all logs received ... (for) a Ten-Tec
QRP Xcvr kit, band of your choice. The event is scheduled for
1700Z Feb 22 - 0500Z Feb 23, is QRP only and acceptable modes
include: CW, and Phone. For rules and late breaking information
point your Web browser to:
http://www.dancris.com/~ki7mn/fyborule.html or contact Dave
- New Member: Dennis MacMahon - KC5YCP
- SARA's HF station at the clubhouse is available for use by
members. The keys to the facility may be obtained from Al
(AC5BX) or Sandy (KB5YIX) at the Socorro Radio Shack. If you
have questions direct them to Al, Sandy, or to any of your
- Don't forget to tune into the weekly ARES net on 146.68 MHz,
on Wednesdays at 8:00 pm local.
- The SARA slow code net is held Thursdays at 8:00 pm on 28.228
MHz. Join in to improve your CW skills.
- SARA meetings are held, beginning at 7:30 pm on the second
Wednesday of each month, in the SARA clubhouse (704 5th Street,
between Manzanares and Abeyta, and behind the chain link fence).
The next meeting is scheduled for this January 8th.
- Everyone is invited to coffee and donuts every Saturday at
Daylight Donuts ~8:30 to 9:30 am.
- February 22, 1997 (1700Z) to February 23, 1997 (0500Z) ---
FYBO Winter QRP Field Day.
AMATEUR RADIO DIGEST
From the ARRL
FCC Stops Renewal Reminders - As of October 22,
the FCC has ceased issuing Form 610R license expiration notices
-- reminders to hams that their tickets are going to expire
within the next 90 days and that they must request renewal. The
last notices sent by FCC covered into February 1997, although the
specific date was not available. A Form 610R for renewal must be
returned by mail only to the FCC. An FCC Public Notice is
expected within a few days.
The demise of the Form 610R means that hams -- whose
licenses are issued for ten-year periods -- must take the
initiative to remember the renewal date of their tickets and file
a Form 610. An FCC spokesman in Gettysburg says the Commission
hopes to have a Form 610 available soon on the World Wide Web to
permit on-line renewals.
W5YI VEC in Dallas, Texas, has begun mailing renewal
reminders and FCC forms to hams whose licenses are about to
expire. If you receive a Form 610R directly from the FCC, you
should return it only to the FCC. If you receive a renewal notice
from the W5YI Group Inc. and if you wish to have the W5YI VEC
handle your renewal for a fee, follow the directions and return
the renewal form to the W5YI VEC, not to the FCC.
If your license will expire within 90 days, you may renew
your license at no cost by completing an FCC Form 610 and
returning it to: FCC, 1270 Fairfield Rd, Gettysburg, PA
17325-7245 (ARRL Letter, Electronic Update October 25, 1996).
Strays - When asked to describe radio, Albert
Einstein is said to have provided an eloquent description: "You
see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull
his tail in New York and his head meows in Los Angeles. Do you
understand this?" Einstein then continued: "Radio operates
exactly the same way---you send signals here, they receive them
there. The only difference is that there is no cat (ARRL Letter
From Newsline Radio
70 cm Band Loss In Guatemala - Hams have lost
out to commercial users of the 70 cm band in Guatemala and the
cost could be interference to ham radio satellite operations
world wide. This is because Guatemala now intends to put
commercial operations across the band. Commercial signals that
will probably include the 70 centimeter satellite subband.
Manfred Kolbe, TG9IKE, reports via the Amsat News Service
that on Monday, November 18, 1996, the Diario de Centro America
published the new law regulating all telecommunications in
Guatemala. Part of the law removes ham radio access from all
frequencies above 146 MHz except for tiny slivers in the giga
The new law was created by a commission from the state owned
telecommunications company GUATEL, which consulted the Radio Club
of Guatemala about the project. The commission was quite
astonished to learn that ham operators operate some 20 satellites
for global communications. Even more so when Guatemalan hams
supplied a list of amateur satellites with operating frequencies
and modes. The existence of the Amateur Satellite Service was
also brought to the attention of the CEO of GUATEL. Also told
was the chairman of the committee of congress in charge of the
new Guatemalan telecommunications law. He was even presented
IARU and ITU documentation.
But even with all of this documentation, the decision was
made to run the hams off and turn the spectrum over to money
making operations. As a result, the 70 cm band in Guatemala
which is comprised the frequencies between 430 to 440 MHz has now
been declared available for commercial use only.
And its not only Guatemala hams that will face problems
because of the change. There is likely be heavy interference to
Amateur Satellite Service operations in Region 2 when the
transponders on various ham sats pick up commercial signals and
rebroadcast them on other bands. Even for low orbiting
satellites this will affect an area from southern Canada, all of
the USA, Mexico, Central and South America down to Chile and
Argentina. Taking into account the future operations of the
Phase 3D ham satellite, the situation may even get a lot worse
(Newsline Radio - CBBS Edition #1008 - 12/06/96).
SAR'S AND WRC-97 - Hams worldwide could be
effected by another attempt to share the 430 to 440 MHz band.
The 1997 World Radiocommunications Conference likely will be
asked to allocate the band 430-440 MHZ to the earth exploration
satellite service and upgrade the status of this service in the
bands above 1 GHz. This includes amateur secondary allocations
at 1240-1300 MHz; 10-10.025 GHz; 24.05-24.25 GHz; and 78-79 GHz.
Current proposals to consider support for SAR's at WRC-97 have
studied compatibility between space services and other
Proponents would also like to scan temperate forests but
operators of surveillance radar have objected that even
infrequent interference would be unacceptable. That could rule
out operations over North America and Europe, the areas with the
greatest number of amateurs and probably those most active in the
70 cm band. Even for those amateurs in the tropical regions, any
interference would be infrequent and limited by the need to avoid
interference to terrestrial radar (Newsline Radio - CBBS Edition
#1008 - 12/06/96).
Hams Want Morse Code - The numbers are in and by
a wide margin hams say that they want the Morse code to stay. In
a recent survey conducted by the American Radio Relay League,
amateurs have made their feelings known. In over rousing
fashion, amateurs have said yes to the retention of morse code.
Sixty two percent of ARRL members polled said yes to keeping the
code. While thirty percent said no. Of all amateurs polled,
members and non-members alike, Fifty four percent said yes to
keeping the code, while thirty seven percent said no. In this
era of the popular no code tech license, amateurs say no to the
total no code licensing.
The bottom line. In months passed some high ranking
officials have publicly hinted that the ARRL might not be opposed
to expansion of privileges for no code hams. As a result of this
survey, when the League goes to WRC '99, it will have to stand
its ground. It will be forced to say no to those administrations
whose telecommunications leaders say that its time to delete the
Morse code as a testing requirement for getting ham radio voice
operating privileges on bands below 30 MHz (Newsline Radio - CBBS
Edition #1008 - 12/06/96).
Submissions to SARA Newsletter
Contributions related to amateur radio will be considered for
inclusion in the SARA Newsletter. Text should be of general
interest to readers, and on the order of 200 to 300 words. Each
month ads to buy, sell, or trade may be included. The usual
caveat applies, items must be ham-related. Material will be
included on a space available; first come, first served basis;
and pretty much at the discretion of the editor.
To be assured of consideration for the next newsletter,
material must be received by the 25th day of the month. I would
prefer to have submissions in the form of a DOS ASCII file.
Email is ideal (to djohnsonATnmt.edu), snail mail to 325 McCutcheon St., Socorro,
NM 87801, or you can FAX text to (505) 835-6436. Telephone
queries will be received at 835-1432 AT hm, or 835-5771 AT wk.
(D. Johnson - ed.)
SARA Newsletter Advertising Policy
In response to inquiries about inclusion of 'advertising' in the
SARA Newsletter, your president has endorsed the following
policy. Space in the newsletter will continue to be available at
no cost to SARA members who wish to buy, sell or trade amateur
items. Items from nonmembers that are of potential benefit to
members (i.e. job announcements) will be included at no cost. Ad
space will be available to commercial interests on a space
available basis and at a rate of $10/column inch. Camera ready
copy must be compatible with the newsletter format.
The Socorro Amateur Radio Association would like to thank the
Albuquerque District office of Lanier Worldwide, Inc. for its
generous support of the SARA Newsletter.
D. Johnson - Ed.
- President: Howard Peavey (K9PV); 835-9653
- Vice President: Dave Johnson (KB5YIW); 835-1432
- Secretary: Gayle Rhodes (KC5HGJ); 835-7221
- Treasurer: Chuck Broadwell (W5UXH); 835-3916
Dave Johnson, KB5YIW
SARA Newsletter Editor
325 McCutcheon St. W.
Socorro, NM 87801-4535