RADIO ACTIVE by xiuliliaofz


									                                     RADIO ACTIVE
                           Newsletter of the Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club

February, 2008                                                      Serving Las Vegas since April 1961
    The next regular meeting of the LVRAC is on TUESDAY, February 19, 2008

                              Leadership Message
                             Tom Petrakis - KE4ULL
                             LVRAC President

      President’s Corner: Races vs. RACES.
Webster’s defines Races as, the plural of Race, a competition of speed. The competitors in a race try to
complete a given task in the shortest amount of time. Typically this involves traversing some distance,
but it can be any other task involving speed. Running a distance is the most basic form of racing, but
races are often conducted in vehicles, such as boats, cars and aircraft, or with animals such as horses.

We in Amateur Radio define RACES as Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service, a standby FCC
radio service provided for in Part 97.407 [1] of the FCC rules and regulations governing amateur radio
in the United States. The concept of a standby Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service to replace the
FCC's Amateur Radio Service during wartime was developed in 1952 as result of input from the
American Radio Relay League and the Department of the Army's Office of Civil Defense. During
World War II, the Amateur Radio Service had been silenced and a new War Emergency Radio Service
(WERS) had to be created from scratch.

Why do I bother pointing out these relatively similar words with tremendously different meanings?
Because here within the Las Vegas valley, these two words (ok, one is an acronym) hold a common
thread within the Amateur Radio ranks. Without the support of one, the other is limited in its ability to
fulfill its mission. It is a very well known fact that the assets of the Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club
routinely support the activities of the Clark County RACES/ARES organizations. Routinely members
of the LVRAC and those of other affiliations, support these ongoing activities. We, if you will, “try to
complete a given task”. Routinely, the LVRAC’s communications trailer is towed to an event and
RACES members utilize its vast array of communication gear as the event command post.

Again, why do I bother to mention all of this to you? Because it is a direct result of the “races” held at
the Las Vegas Motor Speedway that we have the ability to financially support our Amateur Radio
communications needs and desires. As an additional article in this news letter indicates, the members
of the LVRAC continue to support the deployment of APRS digitpeaters in and around the valley.
Your efforts and participation at the Speedway make these overall efforts possible. We can’t do it
without you. Please volunteer to help us out at the Speedway.
Monthly Meeting Location(s)
As I have mentioned in previous newsletters and on the club’s reflector, we have temporarily secured a
new location for our monthly meetings. It became very apparent that our long lasting relationship at

 K7UGE                                           Page 1         
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                             February, 2008
the former location was not going to be the same in the future. So it was time to cut our losses and
move on. In this community that is a monumental task. One that over the period of two months of
searching only in the last few days brought a temporary resolution to.
Through the effort of one of our own members, Dave Spease/NV7LV, were we able to locate a facility
capable of meeting our needs. Please understand this matter has been of grave personal concern to me.
I can think of nothing more important to me over the last few months, then our absolute need to
conduct a monthly meeting in February. With the pending Speedway activities and its need to ensure
we have appropriately covered the logistics of the event, this was one of my most paramount issues.
Dave came through “big time” and club needs to recognize him for his efforts in securing the use of
James Cashman III Golfhouse located at the TPC Golf Course (Summerlin Pkwy & Town
Center).I truly understand that for many of you this location is not desirable at all. In many cases the
commute to this facility could exceed thirty minutes or more. For this I am truly sorry. But, please
understand that this highly desirable facility is being presented to us at “no cost” and on a meeting
night that we had hope to once again return to. These may sound like small points on a piece of paper,
but remember, it took over two months of searching and someone who knew someone that knew
someone else. Do you get the picture? I personally visited the facility last week and it is just what the
doctor ordered. A big room, chairs, tables and room for us to place some outside antennas on meeting
nights for our HF station. At a height of about 2500’ above the valley floor I believe we should be able
to actually talk to someone. How about that Tim??
As I mentioned in my message on the reflector, this site is only planned as a temporary location. We
are still working behind the scenes with the administration of the College of Southern Nevada in an
attempt to secure a room at their Charleston campus. Being a State of Nevada facility, this process will
take time. I additionally need to tell you of another tremendous opportunity that just availed itself to
me today, again through the efforts of another one of the club’s members. This too appears to be a
location that everyone will be very happy with. I will keep you informed as to our progress. But, for
the moment, we have secured the facilities of the James Cashman III Golfhouse located at the TPC
Golf Course (Summerlin Pkwy & Town Center) and look forward to opening that new door.

I look forward to seeing you all at the meeting on Tuesday, February 19, 2008.

Tom Petrakis - KE4ULL
President, LVRAC

K7UGE                                           Page 2         
 Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                        February, 2008

                          Vice President's Message
                          James R. Gorr - N3TOY

February Meeting
In preparation for March's building party, February's program will be APRS. I would like to try a little
different approach to some of the programs this year. I would like several people to present, then
follow up with a show and tell. I am trying to bring more interactivity to the program.
If you are interested in presenting, please contact me and let me know what you will talk about so I can
schedule time appropriately.
And remember to bring your APRS set up with you for show-and-tell. I am always amazed at the
ingenuity of some HAMs in their home brew projects.
Are you sick of hearing about the speedway yet?
The speedway event this year is February 29th (Friday), March 1st (Saturday) and March 2nd
(Sunday). We still need people to work, especially on Sunday. It is not "hard" work, but it does get
busy and the days can seem long, but the benefit to the club for this one weekend is nothing short of
spectacular. The more people we have the easier it is on everyone. There is a short training session
you need to attend at the speedway before the event. Please consider volunteering for this very
important event. I have been emailing all the people I have signed up so far, if you have not received
anything from me let me know in case I missed you somehow. I will post stuff to the reflector and will
probably post stuff to the clubs web page.
This is our major fund raiser for the year. As in the early years of the speedway, all those who work at
least one day at the speedway will be invited to a dinner paid for by the tip money generated. In
addition, all licensed HAMs who work at the speedway will be entitled to one Tiny Trak at the
building party in March. If it sounds like we are trying to bribe you, we are. This event is that
LVRAC Email Reflector
I have been getting a few questions about the reflector since I have been promoting it the last few
weeks. The reflector works this way: An email sent to the reflector gets rebroadcast to everyone who
is subscribed to the reflector. The Board uses it to announce important information like upcoming
meetings and programs. Members organizing events use it to solicit volunteers. It is a one to many
solution to communication. The reflector is the ONLY way the Board will disseminate information out
to the membership, we will not spam your email address from the members database except for matters
of the utmost importance. That is why it is so important that every member of the club be subscribed to
the reflector. To subscribe to the reflector go to and search for "LVRAC".
Repeater Update
Both repeaters are back on-line and linked together full time again! Several HAM have given
unselfishly of themselves for several weekends in a row to restore the system back to full health.
Tom Petrakis, KE4ULL has been a terrific project manager bringing all the right people together to
make this happen. It has been 7 months since the link first went down and it appears no one took the
initiative to plan or schedule repeater maintenance since Tom turned over the books two years ago.
Tom has taken on the repair of the repeater system with great vigor.

K7UGE                                           Page 3        
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                         February, 2008
Mike Lee, WB6RTH is the new trustee for the repeaters and has spent a considerable amount of time
over the last several weekends at both the Hilton and the Tropicana working on the system. His overall
knowledge is amazing and we are very lucky to have him on board as trustee. He has big shoes to fill
from the past trustee, Pat O'Gera, N7QE. These are two of the smartest people I know and both are
always willing to share their knowledge!
Bill Croghan, WB0KSW can always be counted on to assist with repeater work. Bill is a long time,
very active member of the club. A local broadcast engineer, Bill has had his hands in and out of our
repeaters for many years and is always a great asset to any work party.
Kirk Nemzer, WB6EGR, a recent transplant from California also lent a hand with the work. Kirk
recently moved to Las Vegas and works for North Las Vegas Police fixing radios and his knowledge
was a big help.
Thanks to Ralph Decker, N7TND for repairing the UHF radio. Always working quietly in the
background, Ralph has again stepped up to fix the Micor radio, without which nothing else would have
                       from the Editor's Desk...
                       Frank Drake, KL7IPV

                          I have to say here that I am impressed by Tom's first month as president. Why?
Because he runs the meetings crisply and starts by acknowledging that we get our rights and privileges
thanks to a great country! Ours!! To pay respect to our great country, Tom has decided that we will
start each meeting by saying the Pledge of Allegiance to our country. What better way to start the
meetings? Why not acknowledge that many things we take for granted are not available to most of the
rest of the world. Ham radio is one of them. Many countries have allowed ham radio use but many cut
off that use at the first incidence of turmoil. Others allow its use but limit what may be discussed or
when it can be used. Thank you Tom for leading us and reminding us where we are and the special part
of the world we live in.
This is a long newsletter this month. I got a lot of input from many sources as well as members writing
me with there thoughts and views. The letters I receive give an insight to how they view our club in
that they are willing to reveal how they feel privately. Bill and Michael are two of them I have
included letters from this month. It is YOUR newsletter and you should feel free to provide input as
you want. I am just a person who inserts your input. If I don't get any, I look for outside sources. I
would rather have you in your newsletter. It is nice to see what others are doing but nothing matches
the importance of knowing what is happening here. Keep those letters coming. Let others know what
you do to make this hobby fun. Tell us of something that happened to you that made you take this
hobby up. Tell us of that special person that inspired you to do this. Do you remember a special
"Elmer" that steered you as you meandered through the testing for this hobby? Tell us. I will be happy
to spread the word.
Until next month,
Frank - KL7IPV

K7UGE                                           Page 4        
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                          February, 2008

Get Saddled Up For Emcommwest
"The Biggest Little Ham Convention in the World"

ARRL Nevada Section Operating Specialty Convention
May 2-3-4, 2008

Featuring Riley Hollingsworth K4ZDH, Banquet Speaker and Session Presenter on
"Regulatory Concerns of Emergency Communications" and
Dennis Dura K2DCD, Keynote Speaker, ARRL Emergency Preparedness and Response
Circus Circus Hotel and Casino
500 N. Sierra Street
Reno,Nevada 89503

Talk-in: 146.610(-) PL 123.0 and 147.030(+) PL 123.0
Friday Night BBQ . Saturday Ham Swap Meet
Commercial Vendor Booths . Saturday Night Banquet
Free Licensing Exams . Great Speakers and Sessions
Fantastic Door Prizes

Event Information:  E-Mail
EMCOMMWEST is a Registered Servicemark of EMCOMMWEST, Inc.
      thanks to W1JD - JD Delancy of the AARC for this one:
Purdue Ham Radio Club (2nd oldest in country)?
In two years, Purdue Univ amateur radio will celebrate its centennial. The early processes of
communication were more mechanical than electronic.
The Full Story:

K7UGE                                           Page 5        
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                February, 2008
.              This came from Bill Croghan - WB0KSW after his birthday. Happy birthday, Bill.

                   Yesterday, 16 January, I celebrated my 64th birthday. I went to work, did some really
.                   fun things at the radio station, had some minor emergencies that were resolved and
.                   generally had fun. Today, a friend, who is a year or two older than me sent me       .
.                   something in E-mail that I thought was great. I'd like to share it with some of my .
.                   friends. I have no idea who originally wrote it, but it was sent to me by my friend    .
.                   Bob Nagel.
.                                        "OLD AGE IS A GIFT."
I am now, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to be. Oh, not my
body! I sometime despair over my body, the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the sagging butt. And often
I am taken aback by that old person that lives in my mirror (who looks like my father!), but I don't
agonize over those things for long.
I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a
flatter belly. As I've aged, I've become more kind to myself, and less critical of myself. I've become my
own friend. I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying
that old computer at the thrift store that I didn't need, but looks so avant garde on my patio. I am
entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant. I have seen too many dear friends leave this world
too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.
Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer with Mugu?s until 4 AM and sleep
until noon? I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60&70's, and if I, at the same
time, wish to weep over a lost love. I will.
I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves
with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set.They, too, will get old.
I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I
eventually remember the important things.
Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved
one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody's beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts
are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and
sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.
I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful
laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many
have died before their hair could turn silver.
As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don't
question myself anymore. I've even earned the right to be wrong.
So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am
not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have
been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day.(If I feel like it)
-- Bill Croghan WB0KSW CPBE
Chief Engineer, Lotus Broadcasting Las Vegas
Las Vegas, NV

K7UGE                                             Page 6        
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                          February, 2008

                        Treasurer’s Report
                        By Gerry Wojciechowski, K9ADY
                         LVRAC Monthly Reconciliation of Income and Expenses 2008

                                              Balance at the end of December:     $8,974.05

                                                Income Deposited for January:       $885.00

                                                        Expenses for January:       $499.71

                                                Balance at the end of January:    $9,359.34

Sorry, I haven't been in town due to personal reasons but I want to pass on what information I have
about the NAB convention and exhibits this April. Please pass along the following to your members
and post it on your newsletters.
The National Association of Broadcasters will again be in town for their annual convention and
equipment exhibit. The exhibits are open April 14-17 between 9:00AM to 6:00PM (Thursday to
4:00PM). The NAB generously provides a booth to the American Radio Relay League and Southern
Nevada hams assist by staffing it. The location is the same as last year (Lobby 1) next to the
registration entrance. Entrance to the exhibits is not required to operate the booth but volunteers are
eligible to sign up for a VIP exhibits pass, allowing them to visit the exhibits.
The ARRL requests that volunteers be league members and convention rules exclude anyone under 16
years old from entering the exhibits area. The booth operates during exhibit hours with between two
and four volunteers staffing itwith morning and afternoon shifts. Those willing to help out all day or
multiple days are welcomed.
The NAB has made a first time request for the names of volunteers so anyone wishing to help, please
contact me by e-mail ( so I can put you on the list. The booth operates as an
information source and there is no selling of any kind. The league supplies QST magazines, catalogs
and other handouts. Additional local information (repeater lists & "candy" store)is available as well.
This is a great opportunity to greet visiting hams from around the country and world at this premiere
broadcasting event. In the past, there has been a well attended ham reception on Wednesday evening
but there is no information about that so far. I will pass along any additional information as it becomes
TNX- 73,
Stan - W7SLP
Stanley Perkins

K7UGE                                            Page 7        
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                            February, 2008
Articles and Pictures are needed for the newsletter. Submit your articles and pictures to Frank Drake,
KL7IPV, our Newsletter Editor. Articles next month must be submitted BEFORE March 7th.
Send them to:

                                                    Clark County ARES/Races
                                                    Charles Kunz, AA5QJ -
                                                    Clark County NV ARES EC /RACES CRO

    Mark your calendars for this years meetings: They are set for:
Saturday, April 19th, July 26th and October 25th.
      Activities: Charlie AA5QJ, EC/RO attended a Training and Exercise Planning Meeting
held by the Clark County Office of Emergency Management, to determine training and
exercises planned by all of the agencies in the Valley for the next 3 years and put them on a
consolidated calendar to minimize conflicts and redundancy.
ARES/RACES supported So NV Health District and Red Cross communications for a valley-
wide functional exercise on Jan 24. Jay Peskin KE7EGO, Bob Matthewson K7RJM, Vern
Garman K0EGA, Jack Cook N8RRL, Keith Aurich KD7TOF, and Charlie Kunz AA5QJ
The quarterly ARES/RACES meeting was held Jan 26 with 41 members. Leaders updated on
the current status of their areas, and a discussion was held on the concept of Amateur Radio
Communications Teams.
Jay Peskin KE7EGO, AEC Henderson, and Charlie Kunz AA5QJ, EC/RO, met with Clark
County School District officials to discuss ARES/RACES support.
ARES/RACES members participated in communications support for the Southern Nevada
Stage Bike Race on Hwy 165 leading to Nelson's Landing. It was a cold and rainy day, yet
over 100 riders braved the course.
There were 54 check ins to the GMRS Emergency Net and 147 check ins to the
ARES/RACES Net in January.
Next meeting: April 12 at the Clark COunty Gov't Center - 9 AM.

K7UGE                                             Page 8        
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                          February, 2008
      This comes from Michael Vandever - KE6HCG:               Memories of the past.
-----Original Message-----
Sent: Fri, 18 Jan 2008 10:02 am
Subject: Re: LVRAC January 2008 newsletter on line.........
       Frank - Well.....Here goes!! Back a few years ago, during the Fall of 2002, I was doing the same
rehabilitation at Sunrise Hosp., that I will be undergoing now to a lesser degree. Being 40 LBS. lighter,
and in much better shape due to an active job at Mandalay Bay Hotel/Casino. During the World Series
Telecast between the California Angels and the San Francisco-Giants, I was Monitoring the LVRAC
NET with my Yaesu VX-5, which worked fabulously in my Room. When it was my turn to call in, I
gave a special message to Carolyn Corneilius, (whom I knew was an avid Angel's fan), that San
Francisco might be too tough to handle. Well, Carolyn responded in kind and reminded me that since
Gene Autry was a favorite of hers, and was also the Owner of the Angel's team, and would beat my
hometown team. The Angels eventually did, and as a consolation, I dialed my VX-5 over to the IRLP
on 447.000, (thank you Kent, W7AOR). From my Hospital bed, I was able to contact a War Veteran
outside of Houston, TX, A Husband waiting for his wife to arrive at a Subway Station, in Tokyo,
Japan, a really nice "Bloke" outside of Brisbane, Australia, and a really friendly Canadian from a small
town in Ontario. While my nurse was drawing blood from my right arm, my left arm was very busy
keying, and communicating with the world. OH, and the nurse was so impressed, that she called some
of her worthy colleagues into the room, to witness my worldwide conquests from such a little, but most
powerful Ham Radio, that is 1/2 the size of my transistor radio that gave me such pleasure in the
1970's. This radio, that I mentioned was recommended to me by a member of the LVRAC and
purchased from the finest candy store in the southwest, AES.
       I hope, again, when being in sabbatical for approximately 1 month, that I can enjoy and be a
part of IRLP, and obtain a year's membership. I have been photographer for the Culinary Union 226,
and the CCCC Democratic Party and State Central Committee of the Democratic Party, since the
Political oven has been turned on. I also write quite creatively, and would love to offer you stories,
vignettes, and experiences. I hope to be a worthy contributor to the Newsletter!
Michael J. Vandever
*       **********************************************************************
New members and visitors:

From Morocco: Youssef Kasbi - CN8KY &
Ilham Rhazali - CN8JI                                            James Godwin - KE7PUX

K7UGE                                           Page 9        
K7UGE   Page 10
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                    February, 2008
And from my other club I received this item:

Maybe you have thought about visiting Alaska. Now is your chance as well as attending an
ARRL Convention. As a Life Member of the AARC I can tell you from experience that the
Anchorage Amateur Radio Club KNOWS how to put a hamfest together. Now it the time to
plan for it. Again, look at: for more info.
Frank - KL7IPV

     Please remember that any member not dues current before March will
receive their last newsletter in February.

K7UGE                                        Page 11      
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                           February, 2008
Nevada Section News Summary - See the complete, unedited stories at:
January 12, 2008 - New Hams Net QSY's - The New Hams Net in the Reno area is
moving to the Pond Peak repeater 146.76 minus (-) pl 123.0. The New Hams Net meets
every Sunday at 1300 hours local. (tnx to Steve KE7HLS for this)

January 10, 2008 - ARES Monthly Report for December'07 SEC Summary -
Emcommwest 2008 in Reno May 2-4 at Circus Circus in Reno. New chair will be Kevin,
KE7BQX, is rolling full steam ahead. Keep up with constant additions of
information on the website, Some exciting things are coming,
so check often for updates. Skywarn Recognition Day, was a tremendous success,
with all 3 districts well represented. Nice job everyone! We are working on
getting a new EC for Pershing County after the first of the year. Section TC Kent,
W7AOR now working on putting an IRLP node in Winnemucca, so we will be able to
have them on the statewide intercom soon. We used IRLP as well as HF for an
informal New Year's Eve Net and nearly all points of the state were heard from. HF
conditions were fairly good. All 3 districts were represented on both modes.
Thanks Kent for all the hard work on helping us get closer to each other on the
air. By the time you read this, it will be January 2008 already, so I hope that
everyone had a great Christmas, New Year's and is off to a great year ahead.
Thanks again for everyones dedication and hard work. 73 Don Carlson, KQ6FM SEC.

The month was busy with exercises and SKYWARN events. Jeff KC7PK, Gary WA4PDM,
Frank KL7IPV, John N7UR and myself participated in SRD 07. We had IRLP, 40M and
20M stations operating from the NWS office in Las Vegas. We had contacted 34 NWS
stations. No. Nye Co. Report by Randy KB7TRI, Acting EC was Net Control for 1
Statewide Net. Several members participated in Skywarn and ARES weekly nets. So.
Nye Co. Report by Jerry KC6ILH Started off with the Red Cross exercise, then we
went and did some teaching and radio demonstrating at the local middle school and
ended up distributing Christmas baskets and gifts towards the end of the month.
Lincoln Co. Report by Lee K7NKH I regret to inform you that Roland (Rolly) Simmons
KK7LS became a silent key December 20,2007. Rolly was RACES officer for Lincoln
Clark County Report by Charlie AA5QJ - Red Cross Flash Flood Exercise was also
held on Dec 1. 12 members of CC NV ARES/RACES, coordinated by Jack N8RRL, AEC Red
Cross, provided communications for operations at Disaster Relief Operations
Headquarters, 2 shelters and 1 pet shelter, plus Damage Assessment Teams and
supply operations. Cal KE6OEH, AEC Salvation Army, led a Salvation Army team in
providing meals to 'victims' and workers at all 3 locations from their new Mobile
Canteen. Members of So Nye County ARES/RACES provided communications for the EOC
and shelters in Pahrump, and were linked to the Las Vegas HQ via VHF/UHF. Vern
K0EGA participated in a tabletop exercise on Dec 10, the scenario being New Years
Eve operations in Las Vegas, and was attended by local city, county, state and
federal agencies. Prior to each CC NV ARES/RACES Monday evening net, a net using a
local GMRS repeater is held, taking check-ins from ARES/RACES members with GMRS
capability, REACT members, and other locals wishing to participate. There were 44
check-ins in December. The Monday Night net on New Years Eve was kept open into
the New Year with Tim W9AYK as net control. There were 22 check-ins throughout the
evening. Next meeting: April 19th.
ARRL Nevada Section
Section Manager: Dick Flanagan, K7VC

K7UGE                                 Page 12   
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                               February, 2008
The ARRL Letter
Vol. 27, No. 5
February 8, 2008


* + Amateurs Lend a Hand as Deadly Storms Sweep across Southern United States
* + "Source" Disavows Inflated NTIA BPL Figure
* + Field Day 2008 Rules and Forms Now Available
* + Get Ready To Go the Distance with the ARRL International DX Contests
* Solar Update
 This Weekend on the Radio
 ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration
+ ARRL to Offer Award for 6 Meter Operations
+ Heil Sound Donates Microphones, Accessories to W1AW and W1HQ
 DXCC Pushes to Get Ahead
 Rob Brownstein, K6RB, Wins January QST Cover Plaque Award
 Dates for ARRL/TAPR Digital Communications Conference Announced
 ARISS to Conduct Simulation QSO between Astronauts and Students
 European Reciprocal Licenses Now Limited to Advanced and Extra Class Licensees

+Available on ARRL Audio News


At least 54 people were killed and hundreds injured Tuesday and Wednesday by dozens of
tornadoes that plowed across Mississippi, Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky and Alabama in the
nation's deadliest barrage of twisters in almost 23 years. In spite of the disasters, state
and local emergency management officials once again discovered that they could call on
Amateur Radio operators to help out and get communications up and going again after the
infrastructure failed.

According to ARRL Southeastern Division Director Greg Sarratt, W4OZK, "Four people were
killed in Alabama as the storms damaged homes, caused flooding and downed trees and power
lines. North Alabama SKYWARN, ARES and scores of Amateur Radio operators were up all night
long, providing vital communications to the National Weather Service and Emergency
Management Agencies all across the region. Once again, Amateur Radio operators played a
critical role before, during and after the storms. I am proud of the level of
professionalism and critical information that these operators provided our served

Hundreds of houses were damaged or destroyed across the region. Authorities had no
immediate cost estimate of the damage. The storms flattened entire streets, smashed
warehouses and sent tractor-trailers flying. Houses were reduced to splintered piles of
lumber. Some looked like life-size doll houses, their walls sheared away. Crews going door-
to-door to search for bodies had to contend with downed power lines, snapped trees and
flipped-over cars. Near hard-hit Lafayette, Tennessee, cattle wandered through the debris.
At least 12 people died in and around the town; more than 30 were killed in Tennessee

"It looks like the Lord took a Brillo pad and scrubbed the ground," Tennessee Governor Phil
Bredesen said as he surveyed the damage from a helicopter. "I don't think that I have seen,
since I've been governor, a tornado where the combination of the intensity of it and the
length of the track was as large as this one," he said. "That track had to be 25 miles
long. [The twister] didn't skip like a lot of them do...It's just 25 miles of a tornado
sitting on the ground."

K7UGE                                      Page 13    
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                               February, 2008
Most communities had ample warning that the storms were coming. Forecasters had warned for
days that severe weather was possible. The National Weather Service issued more than 1000
tornado warnings from 3 PM Tuesday-6 AM Wednesday in the 11-state area where the weather
was heading. The conditions for bad weather had lined up so perfectly that the Storm
Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma put out an alert six days in advance.

Tennessee Section Emergency Coordinator Lowell Bennington, WD4DJW, said that approximately
25 hams in Madison County had participated in SKYWARN activities before the storm arrived;
one ham actually spotted the twister. "Two hams reported to the Tennessee Emergency
Management Agency-West, assisting in passing radio communication. A couple of hams assisted
Madison County EMA in setting up their Mobile Command Post. On Wednesday, 10 teams were
dispatched to do Damage Assessment. These teams were composed of three individuals, one of
whom was an Amateur Radio operator," he said.

Bennington said that hams in Middle Tennessee "utilized our vast networks of linked 2 meter
repeater systems as well as our UHF-linked system in support of the National Weather
Service, Tennessee Emergency Management, law enforcement agencies and participating local
EMA offices. Operators from Wilson County were dispatched to the Nashville NWS office and
they operated from there until around 3:30 AM Thursday, giving and taking weather reports."

Alabama ARES District 6 Emergency Coordinator Doug Hilton, WD0UG, said his area was hit
hard by a fast-moving line of severe weather; District 6 covers the northern counties of
Alabama. Hilton contacted the NWS office in Huntsville early Wednesday regarding possible
SKYWARN activation. "After discussing the situation with NWS personnel, it was decided that
since this was going to be a long event, that would probably last all night, it was best
not to tie up the local repeaters early on. I opened an informal SKYWARN net to get weather
information out to the amateur community during the afternoon, and several Madison County
hams participated in the net. We closed the net after about an hour and re-opened it that
evening at 7," he said. Madison County ARES was activated that evening and other hams in
the area joined in. Hilton said Northern Alabama has a linked-repeater system that covers
all 10 counties during emergency conditions.

The storm churned into Western Alabama from Mississippi about 9 PM. The main part of the
storm started its destruction at 3 AM. Hilton said, "The storm was a killer, and the extra
lead time that people got from the great staff at NWS probably led to a reduction in
casualties. A massive long-track EF-3 tornado hit Lawrence County and caused 3 fatalities
and more than 20 people were injured." Hilton said the NWS estimated the twister to be 1/2
mile wide with a path length of 18.7 miles, causing "extreme destruction of property." An
EF-4 tornado with peak winds of 180 MPH went through Jackson County, causing one fatality.

Hilton said hams were able to provide many timely situation reports, "and 'ground truth' is
always the best indicator of reality. Many of the hams who stayed up all night were also
prepared to leave their homes at a moment's notice to go anywhere in the District, if
needed. The incredible teamwork of this ARES/SKYWARN team and the level of professionalism
was something to behold."

Chris Shaw, W4BGN, Kentucky District Emergency Coordinator, said several confirmed
tornadoes touched down throughout his state. "Kentucky hams activated weather nets, while
others were out and about spotting for severe weather. Allen and Monroe Counties in South
Central Kentucky were especially hard hit. Some repeaters lost power and hams quickly
adapted, going to emergency simplex frequencies on 2 meters. The communications went very
smooth and seemed to be beneficial to many. Hams worked throughout the night to help
provide communications, especially to those areas without power."

 President Bush gave assurances that his administration stood ready to help. Teams from the
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) were sent to the region and activated an
emergency center in Georgia, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said Wednesday.
"We're going to keep watching this." "Loss of life, loss of property -- prayers can help
and so can the government," Bush said. "I do want the people in those states to know the
American people are standing with them." On Wednesday, Bush called the governors of the

K7UGE                                     Page 14    
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                 February, 2008
affected states to offer help and to tell them that "the American people hold those who
suffered up in prayer."

While the weather was unusually severe, winter tornadoes are not uncommon. The peak tornado
season is late winter through midsummer, but the storms can happen at any time of the year
with the right conditions. "All the clues were there. It was just unfortunate that it came
out the way it did," prediction center director Joseph Schaefer said. Greg Carbin, warning
coordination meteorologist at the Oklahoma center, said there were 67 eyewitness accounts
of tornadoes, but some of those were probably twisters that were counted more than once;
the actual number is probably more like 30 or 40, he said.

As more ARES groups relay information to ARRL, we will update these reports on the ARRL Web
site. -- Some information provided by The Weather Channel


ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, writes:

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) report Networked
Nation: Broadband in America 2007
that was released on January 31, 2008 includes the following: "Reliable BPL [broadband over
power lines] subscribership figures are difficult to find. The FCC's most recent data
identify fewer than 5,000 BPL customers as of year end 2006. That figure appears low,
however. TIA [The Telecommunications Industry Association] estimates 200,000 current BPL

Five years of experience in dealing with BPL systems as a radio interference source have
given the ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio, considerable insight into the
BPL industry. Based on that experience, the ARRL has concluded that the FCC's figure of
fewer than 5000 BPL customers is entirely credible. Therefore, the ARRL set out to
determine the source of the "estimate" of 200,000 current BPL subscribers.

We contacted TIA <> and were advised that the figure came from a
market study prepared by Wilkofsky Gruen Associates Inc and based on research conducted by
In-Stat, a unit of Reed Business Information.

So we contacted In-Stat   and asked how the figure was derived. They responded: "The 200,000
number for BPL subs did   not come from In-Stat. In our US broadband forecast, we estimate
about 231,000 broadband   subscribers in the 'other' category besides DSL, cable, satellite.
Other includes BPL, but   is not solely BPL."

We then contacted Wilkofsky Gruen Associates. They responded: "Our source for the BPL
figures was In-Stat." When In-Stat's denial was shared with them, they responded, "It was
our understanding that BPL was the principal component as it was the first item listed by

TIA was invited to comment but declined to do so.

In other words, here is what we have learned: In-Stat does not claim to know how many BPL
subscribers there are, but provides an estimate of 231,000 broadband subscribers who
receive service via delivery systems other than DSL, cable, and satellite. Wilkofsky Gruen
Associates, on the basis of nothing more than that BPL is listed first, assumes that the
bulk of these 231,000 are BPL subscribers and arbitrarily attributes 200,000 of them to
BPL. In turn, NTIA -- not satisfied with an FCC figure that is derived from required
reports from service providers -- cites this arbitrarily chosen figure -- a figure that
is entirely unsupported by any data whatsoever -- as evidence that the FCC's figure --
which is fully supported by data -- "appears low."

On February 1 we called upon the NTIA to issue a corrected report
<>. We renew that call now.

K7UGE                                       Page 15    
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                 February, 2008

It's that time of year again -- time to start gearing up for Field Day, ARRL's flagship
operating event. Field Day, held the fourth full weekend in June, brings together new and
experienced hams for 24 hours of operating fun. ARRL Field Day Manager Dan Henderson, N1ND,
says there are several rules changes this year, mainly concerning "Get on the Air" (GOTA)
stations and the elimination of the Demonstration Mode Bonus Category. The complete Field
Day Packet can be downloaded from the ARRL Web site <>. A full
2008 Field Day page on the ARRL Web site will be coming in the next few weeks.

GOTA (Get on the Air) stations are those stations set aside by Field Day teams designed to
get non-hams or newly licensed hams on the air. Unlike in past years where GOTA stations
were limited to only one band, the 2008 rules state that these stations may operate on any
authorized HF or VHF Field Day band. Keep in mind that only one signal may be transmitted
from the GOTA station at any time.

Henderson said the eligibility for operating the GOTA station has changed slightly: Anyone
who has been licensed since Field Day 2007 is eligible to operate the GOTA station,
regardless of license class.

For 2008, the Demonstration Mode Bonus category has been eliminated and replaced by an
Educational Activity Bonus worth 100 points. "This bonus is intended to encourage clubs and
groups to do some more formal educational activity during their Field Day operation,"
Henderson said. If you have any questions concerning what activities might be appropriate
for this bonus, Henderson said you should submit them via e-mail <>.

Be sure to read the Field Day rules and FAQs in the 2008 Field Day Packet for details of
these changes. There are also numerous small changes in the FAQs and support materials in
the packet that should help groups and individuals as they plan their Field Day activities,
Henderson said.

The 2008 Field Day Packet also includes an expanded Press Kit, thanks to the work of ARRL
Media and Public Relations Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP. Included in this expanded portion of
the packet is a sample "Field Day Proclamation" for those groups who work with local city
or town officials toward getting a Field Day Week declared in their location.

"We are excited that historic station K6KPH will once again participate transmitting the
W1AW special Field Day Bulletin on the West Coast," Henderson said. More details are
available in the Field Day Packet.

Information concerning the popular Field Day pins and T shirts will be announced in the
next few weeks.

Henderson said that those wishing to obtain a complete Field Day Packet via US mail need to
send a 9 x 12 inch self-addressed, stamped manila envelope with 5 units of postage to Field
Day Packet Request, ARRL, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111. Please allow 2-3 weeks for

If people wish to order display kits for their tables at Field Day, please contact Debra
Johnson, K1DMJ, ARRL Education Manager, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111, tel 860-594-0296.
The cost for the display kit ranges from $8-$12 depending on shipping. To ensure having the
kits in time for Field Day, you are encouraged to order them no later than June 13.


Are you ready to work some DX? The ARRL International DX Contest is coming up!
This is one of the ARRL's oldest operating events, going back to the days of the
International Relay Party in 1928.

K7UGE                                     Page 16    
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                               February, 2008
 The objective is simple: US and Canadian stations work only DX and DX stations work only
US and Canadians. See how many different stations you can contact in as many different
geographical entities as possible. US and Canadian stations try to work different DX
countries, while DX stations try and work US states and Canadian provinces. For this
contest, Alaska, Hawaii and all US possessions and territories are considered DX.
US/Canadians send a signal report and their state or province; DX stations send a signal
report and their transmit power.

You don't need a big station to compete. You can work many stations in this contest with
100 W and a simple dipole or vertical antenna. This event is also a good way to improve
your DXCC Award totals with a small investment of time. Many contesters will be traveling
to foreign locales to participate, so listen for lots of good DX countries on the bands.
The ARRL will once again be offering participation pins for those who make more than 100
QSOs in the event. Pins are $7 (including shipping) and are a nice memento of your
achievement in the contest.

The CW portion of the ARRL DX Contest begins at 0000 UTC on Saturday, February 16 and goes
until 2400 UTC Sunday, February 17. The Phone portion runs from 0000 UTC Saturday, March 1
until 2400 UTC Sunday, March 2. Complete rules can be found online
<>. If you are new to the ARRL DX Contests, look for a primer
on the event by ARRL Contest Branch Manager Sean Kutzko, KX9X, in the Radiosport area of
the March issue of QST.


Tad "Let not the Sun go down and disappear into darkness" Cook, K7RA, this week reports:
After a solid week of sunspots -- January 29 to February 4 -- the following three days have
been blank. February 2 was an active geomagnetic day with a solar wind stream spewing from
a coronal hole near sunspot 982. Another solar wind stream from a coronal hole is expected
to strike Earth on Sunday, February 10 causing unsettled conditions. The predicted
planetary A index for February 8-15 is 8, 12, 15, 10, 10, 10, 10 and 5. That was from NOAA
and the US Air Force; Geophysical Institute Prague predicts unsettled conditions February
8, unsettled to active February 9-10 and unsettled again on February 11-14. The Australian
Space Forecast Centre's geomagnetic forecast expects mostly unsettled to active conditions
with storm periods possible at high latitudes on February 9, and mostly unsettled with
isolated active periods and storm levels at high latitudes on February 10. Following this
week end, NOAA predicts the next active conditions around February 28-29. Their prediction
for solar flux is flat at 70 for each of the next 45 days; this probably indicates little
or no sunspot activity. Sunspot numbers for January 31-February 6 were 15, 19, 16, 14, 14,
0 and 0 with a mean of 11.1. The 10.7 cm flux was 72, 71.1, 71.8, 71, 71.3, 70.5 and 71.6
with a mean of 71.3. Estimated planetary A indices were 5, 18, 19, 12, 6, 3 and 4 with a
mean of 9.6. Estimated mid-latitude A indices were 3, 10, 19, 10, 6, 2 and 2 with a mean of
7.4. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL Technical
Information Service Propagation page <>.
To read this week's Solar Report in its entirety, check out the W1AW Propagation
Bulletin page <>. The first 10 readers who
correctly respond via e-mail <> correctly identifying the quote at
the beginning of this week's Solar Report will receive a free 2008 ARRL calendar. Please
include your call sign and mailing address in your e-mail; we will publish the winners'
call signs in next week's ARRL Letter.


* Next weekend is the ARRL International DX Contest CW on February 16-17. Look for the NCCC
Sprint on February 15 and the Feld Hell Sprint on February 16. The Run for the Bacon QRP
Contest is February 18, the AGCW Semi-Automatic Key Evening is February 20 and the RSGB 80
Meter Club Championship (CW) is February 21. See the ARRL Contest Branch page
<>, the ARRL Contester's Rate Sheet
<> and the WA7BNM Contest Calendar
<> for more info.

K7UGE                                     Page 17    
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                               February, 2008
* ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration: Registration remains open through Sunday,
February 24, 2008 for these online course sessions beginning on Friday, March 7, 2008:
Technician License Course (EC-010); Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 1 (EC-
001); Radio Frequency Interference (EC-006), Antenna Design and Construction (EC-009);
Analog Electronics (EC-012), and Digital Electronics (EC-013). Each online course has been
developed in segments -- learning units with objectives, informative text, student
activities and quizzes. Courses are interactive, and some include direct communications
with a Mentor/Instructor. Students register for a particular session that may be 8, 12 or
16 weeks (depending on the course) and they may access the course at any time of day during
the course period, completing lessons and activities at times convenient for their personal
schedule. Mentors assist students by answering questions, reviewing assignments and
activities, as well as providing helpful feedback. Interaction with mentors is conducted
through e-mail; there is no appointed time the student must be present -- allowing
complete flexibility for the student to work when and where it is convenient. To
learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page <>
or contact the Continuing Education Program Coordinator <>.

* ARRL to Offer Award for 6 Meter Operations: Attention 6 meter operators -- there's a new
award to work toward! The ARRL Board of Directors approved a new award honoring the late
Fred Fish, W5FF, the only amateur who worked and confirmed all 488 grid squares in the 48
contiguous United States on 6 meters. The Fred Fish Memorial Award will be granted to any
amateur who duplicates Fish's accomplishment. Fish was a mainstay on the VHF+ bands for
many years, having achieved Worked All States (WAS) on 6 meters through 432 MHz, as well as
DXCC for 6 meters. He is widely regarded as a gentleman operator and one of the finest
amateurs in the VHF+ community. ARRL Contest Manager Sean Kutzko, KX9X, will oversee this
award. Kutzko, an avid VHF+ operator himself, said, "We hope the new award will increase 6
meter activity throughout the US and the world. We also hope it will lead to the activation
of rare grid squares in the US by encouraging the native ham population of a rare grid squ
 are to give 6 meters a try, as well as through so-called 'Grid DXpeditions.' We actively
call on the 6 meter community to help educate VHF+ newcomers to the fun that is available
on 6 meters." Complete details on the Fred Fish Memorial Award will be available soon.

* Heil Sound Donates Microphones, Accessories to W1AW and W1HQ: Thanks to the generosity of
Bob Heil, K9EID, of Heil Sound Ltd, the Maxim Memorial Station W1AW and the Laird Campbell
Memorial Headquarters Operators Club station W1HQ have some spiffy new audio gear. Heil
Vice President for Amateur Sales and Marketing Chip Margelli, K7JA, visited ARRL HQ January
29 to present the donations. W1AW Station Manager Joe Carcia, NJ1Q, commented: "We thank
Bob Heil for the generosity he's always showed W1AW. All of our headsets and microphones
in use in the visitors studios are Heil Sound products. They see a great deal of use by our
visitors. So the donation of the ear pads/socks will greatly improve the appearance of the
headsets. In addition, the modular pigtails will certainly look much more professional than
the homebrewed pigtails we had been using." The recently renovated W1HQ, located near the
ARRL Lab in the Headquarters building, now has two new Pro Set 4 mic/headsets, a PR7
 81 Proline microphone and a topless boom.

* Dates for ARRL/TAPR Digital Communications Conference Announced: The Tucson Amateur
Packet Radio Corporation (TAPR) has announced that the 2008 ARRL/TAPR Digital
Communications Conference will take place September 26-28 at the Holiday Inn Hotel in Elk
Grove Village, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. The conference is an international forum for
radio amateurs to meet, publish their work and present new ideas and techniques. Presenters
and attendees will have the opportunity to exchange ideas and learn about recent hardware
and software advances, theories, experimental results and practical applications. Forums
will feature the latest developments in Amateur Radio digital communications, as well as
demonstrations of emerging digital technology. More information is available on the
ARRL/TAPR DCC Web site <>.

* European Reciprocal Licenses Now Limited to Advanced and Extra Class Licensees: The
European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) has revised its
table of equivalence between FCC amateur licenses and the CEPT license. Effective February
4, 2008, Recommendation T/R 61-01 (as amended) now grants full CEPT privileges only to
those US citizens who hold an FCC-issued Amateur Extra or Advanced class license. This
means that those US licensees who hold an FCC-issued General or Technician license are no

K7UGE                                     Page 18    
Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                               February, 2008

longer eligible for full operating privileges in countries where CEPT-reciprocal operation
had previously been permitted. US Novice class licensees have had no reciprocal operating
privileges under the CEPT provisions. These changes are the result of a re-evaluation of US
and CEPT license classes equivalence by the CEPT's Radio Regulatory Working Group at its

K7UGE                                     Page 19    
meeting January 29-February 1, 2008 in Basel, Switzerland. The Working Group deals with
numerous areas of concern including Amateur Radio, and is responsible for applications
from countries to participate in T/R 61-01, as well as other Amateur Radio related issues.
"Changes in the US license structures and examinations often have ancillary implications
beyond the immediate impact upon the US licensees," said Dan Henderson, N1ND, ARRL
Regulatory Information Manager. "While this CEPT change affects several classes of US
licensees when they visit Europe and other CEPT signatory countries, it has no effect on
their operating privileges at home."

The ARRL Letter is published Fridays, 50 times each year, by the American Radio
Relay League: ARRL--the National Association for Amateur Radio, 225 Main St,
Newington, CT 06111; tel 860-594-0200; fax 860-594-0259; <>.
Joel Harrison, W5ZN, President.

The ARRL Letter offers a weekly e-mail digest of essential and general news of
interest to active radio amateurs. Visit the ARRL Web site <>
for the latest Amateur Radio news and news updates. The ARRL Web site
<> also offers informative features and columns. ARRL Audio
News <> is a weekly "ham radio newscast"
compiled and edited from The ARRL Letter. It's also available as a podcast from
our Web site.

Material from The ARRL Letter may be republished or reproduced in whole or in
part in any form without additional permission. Credit must be given to The ARRL
Letter/American Radio Relay League.
==>ARRL News on the Web: <>
==>ARRL Audio News: <> or call 860-594-0384

Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                               February, 2008

K7UGE                                     Page 20    
  Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club                                                         February, 2008
                                      LVRAC Contact Information

       President            Tom Petrakis, KE4ULL                  526-0611
       Vice President       Jamie Gorr, N3TOY                  233-2479
       Secretary            Kraig Knapp, KD7JSN         362-1265
       Treasurer            Gerry Wojciechowski, K9ADY                869-5348
       Director             Mark Zuckerman, K7MNZ                  365-8803
       Director             Don Jaster, KA7GRU                737-0544
       Director             Jim Bilan, KC7UXB               302-3431
       Newsletter Editor    Frank Drake, KL7IPV                838-3452
       Trustee              Mike Lee, WB6RTH
       Public Information   Dave Mason, KE7KLU              DMason@privatecollegefunding   528-7955
       Librarian            Mike Stratton, KM1KE                   612-5696
       Webmasters           Jamie Gorr, N3TOY                  233-2479
                            Charlie Kunz, AA5QJ                    334-1196
       Net Controllers      Howard Mark, K3HM                256-3662
                            Frank Drake, KL7IPV                    838-3452
                            Jay Peskin, KE7EGO                    896-4104

                         LAS VEGAS RADIO AMATEUR CLUB
                                          P.O. Box 27342
                                     Las Vegas, Nevada 89126
                                 Membership Application
                                       Please Print Legibly

NEW MEMBER (Please attach copy of license) RENEWAL UPDATE INFORMATION

Name on License_______________________________ Application Date___/___/___
Preferred Name ___________________________________
Call Sign ______________License Class ____________Expiration Date ___/___/___
Address ____________________________ City _______________ State __ Zip ______
Home Telephone (____)________________ Work telephone (____)______________ __
Cellular/Pager (____)___________________
E-mail: _________________________________        ARRL Member ______ ( Y or N )

Family Membership:
Name _______________ Call _______________License Class __________
Name _______________ Call _______________License Class __________
Name _______________ Call _______________License Class __________

Member Signature ___________________________________

Your preference in receiving the monthly club newsletter : ____Club Web Page w/email
notification or ____USPO regular mail

The club operates on a calendar year (January through December) with dues presently at $20
per year. Dues are the same for an individual or family membership. Please send check or
money order payable to the Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club (or LVRAC) and mail to the club’s
Post Office box listed in the heading of this application or pay by PayPal at

  K7UGE                                           Page 21       
    Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club
    P.O. Box 27342
    Las Vegas, NV 89126
    February 2008 Issue

                                              Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club
                                               The LVRAC holds monthly meetings as
                                                announced with date and location.
                                                    Meetings start at 7:00 pm.

                                              Radio Net Weekly (except 4th Tuesday) on
                                              VHF 146.94 and UHF 448.50 MHz PL 100
                                               Negative Offset starting at 7:00 pm. All
                                                    Amateurs invited to tune in.


    Radio: 146.940 MHZ (K7UGE repeater)
           448.500 MHz (K7UGE repeater)
           146.730 MHz (QST machine)

K7UGE                               Page 22 

To top