Sep 09

My Volunteer Experience – Special Olympics World Games 2015

DSC04523 By Mike Hamada, KF6UCN,

After the W6TRW Swap Meet on the last Saturday in July, I prepared for the 2015 Special Olympics World Games, as a volunteer for 5 days (35 hours).

Briefing was on Thursday, 7/23. On Sunday, 7/26, I assisted Spectator Services at the Special Olympics World Games Sailing practice event held at Belmont Pier in Long Beach.  I had my Marine Hand Held, which I purchased at the W6TRW Swap Meet for the monitoring of emergency channels and weather channels.

On Tuesday, 7/28 through Friday, 7/31, I had to be at Long Beach Marine Stadium at 06:30.  I worked as a Team Lead Person for Spectator Services, assisting with any safety issues, crowd management issues, and Spectator Services issues.  I was also responsible for making sure Spectator Services personnel had water, snacks, and shift breaks, similar to what I do for the W6TRW Swap Meet.

Long Beach Fire Dept. was called on the last day and was requested to arrive on the Support Services side, since it was closer to the Medical Tent.   I saw the Long Beach Fire Dept. arrive, then another Long Beach Fire Engine arrived from the opposite direction.  I notified all personnel on the radios that Long Beach Fire was also approaching from my location.  Everything worked out and the Special Olympics World Games Awards Ceremony continued.

The spectators and athletes had a good time and it was a fun event for me.  I used what I learned from previous Special Olympics So Cal events, W6TRW Swap Meet events, and various South Bay City and County events.

73, Always Have a Back Up Plan.

Be Prepared.

 

Mike Hamada

KF6UCN

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Sep 01

Club Meeting Tuesday Sept 8 — Sidewalk Earth-Moon-Earth with Doug Millar, K6JEY

W6TRW General Meeting:  Doug Millar K6JEY — Sidewalk Earth-Moon-Earth (EME)

September 8, 2015 at 5:30 pm

Roundtable Pizza, 4330 Redondo Beach Blvd, Torrance

 

CLICK HERE TO VIEW / DOWNLOAD A PDF FLYER FOR THIS MEETING EVENT

K6JEY

 

Moonbounce, is a form of wireless communication in which the moon is used as a passive satellite. The moon is approx. 250,000 miles away from the earth. Bouncing radio signals via the moon and back to earth is a real challenge. Any licensed amateur can conduct EME transmissions on VHF and UHF frequencies. Doug will discuss basics and show how he uses his home station.  This is the ultimate DX.

 

Frontier Scientist, Doug Millar, K6JEY, has been a ham since 1957. He built his first microwave rig for 1.2 GHz in 1960 out of a surplus Navy IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) system. He has been doing EME since 1990. He was one member of a team of hams used the 140 ft dish at Owen’s Valley Radio Observatory for EME.  A member of the San Bernardino Microwave Society W6IFE, he is the ARRL Tech Advisor in Metrology, writing chapters on Test Procedures in the ARRL Handbook.  K6JEY holds an EdD in Education Technology and is a semi-retired professor. His favorites are HF, CW, AM, boatanchors and microwaves. Doug has radios on bands up to 122 GHz.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW / DOWNLOAD A PDF FLYER FOR THIS MEETING EVENT

 

Jul 13

Swap Meet to Remain at NG Through December 2015

NOTICE:

W6TRW Swap MeetWe are pleased to announce that the W6TRW Swap Meet will continue to be held at Northrop Grumman through the end of the year.  This means that Swap Meets and VE Testing will continue as usual through December 2015.

The Swap Meet will be moving to a new location in January, 2016. That location will be announced later this year.

Please keep checking this website for updates as they become available.

 

 

Jul 06

Club Meeting Tuesday July 14 – Bill Shanney, W6QR – HF Transcievers

W6TRW General Meeting Tuesday, July 14th at 5:30 pm

Roundtable Pizza, 4330 Redondo Beach Blvd, Torrance

Bill Shanney W6QRHe’s Back! Guest Speaker Bill Shanney, W6QR on HF Transceivers

W6TRW welcomes one its own, longtime member, Bill Shanney, W6QR, to center stage.  A ham operator since 1960, Bill has written many technical articles in the club’s Crosstalk newsletter and stays current with ham radio items of interest for beginners to the most advanced operators.

Join us Tuesday night!   Find out why HF is Bill’s favorite band.

Download Bill’s presentation.

“My first call was WV2RDG in NJ. I became WA2RDG when I got my general in 1961. I operate 99.5% CW on 160-6M.

After a long period of inactivity (career and family) I upgraded to extra class in 1988 and became very active. That is also the year that I joined the TRW ARC.

I have a BSEE from NJ Institute of Technology and worked for 45 years in RF and microwave design. I retired from NG/TRW in 2007 after 31 years with the company.”

Jun 21

Information on W6TRW Field Day

Field Day SignHi, all –

It’s summertime, and the annual ARRL Field Day is here again!  Please join us on 27-28 June at Friendship Park in San Pedro.  There will be lots of opportunities to learn about radio technology and radio operation firsthand, and to get on the air!  It’s also a great time to meet the other W6TRW club members, so don’t miss out!

We are going to operate as class 7A (7 stations, generator power) as we traditionally have done.  We will have several HF bands, digital modes, VHF-UHF stations, the Get-On-The-Air station, and we will be trying for a satellite contact.

Please see the links below for more Field Day information:

http://w6trw.com/index.php/w6trw-field-day/

http://w6trw.com/index.php/2015/05/28/w6trw-field-day-june-27-28/

and see the ARRL Field Day page:

http://www.arrl.org/field-day

Please reply to me, or to our W6TRW web page contact link, to ask for more info or to get involved.  We really want to see you at Field Day and we hope you will get some excellent experience.  You can also contact Ray, KD6IGI, to coordinate or volunteer for any part of Field Day, and you can contact Jason,KD6ELS if you want to help with setup on Friday 26 June or teardown on Sunday 28 June.

The map of the local area around Friendship Park is here.  It shows the location of our Field Day setup, on the high ground in the park.

During the Field Day operations (9 AM Saturday 27 June to noon Sunday 28 June), for entry, call:

447.000 PL 203.5 – (local Field Day repeater)

145.320 PL 114.8 – (W6TRW wide area repeater)

Call for any of the following call signs:

KE6YEX, KD6IGI, KD6ELS, KF6UCN, “W6TRW Field Day Site”

We will get you into the site.

See you there!!

— Greg KE6YEX

 

Jun 20

Special Olympics Summer Games Cal State University Long Beach

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The W6TRW ARC crew at the Special Olympics. Left to right: Scott Marsiglia, KI6KWI, Doug Walker, W6DOW, Mike Hamada, KF6UCN, Michael Bao, AI6BJ, John Bacon, KG6IMP.

On Saturday & Sunday June 13th &14th W6TRW club members John Bacon KG6IMP, Michael Bao AI6BJ, Mike Hamada KF6UCN, Scott Marsiglia KI6KWI, and Doug Walker W6DOW assisted SCRAN, the South Coast Radio Amateur Network group as additional sport venue Amateur Radio communications for Special Olympics Summer Games at Cal State University Long Beach.

This was probably the best showing and representation of W6TRW club members ever for Special Olympics working with Mark Lidikay’s group SCRAN.

Each club member worked at assigned details, John Bacon Track & Field, Michael Bao Gymnastics & Basket Ball, Mike Hamada Volunteer Check-in, Scott Marsiglia Aquatics, and Doug Walker at Games Headquarters to relay important venue information to net control assisting with making Special Olympics events run very smoothly.

On Saturday after the games ended for the day, our volunteers were all treated to a great dinner at the “Dog Pound” (the Dog Pound is the distribution Nerve Center for all Special Olympic Staff members and key Volunteers). Anniversary awards were given to volunteers and staff members.

The games went extremely well as the athletes enjoyed a smooth and well orchestrated Special Olympics event. Amateur Radio is appreciated and requested each year for both Summer Games and Fall Special Olympic Games.

Special Olympics is a hard event to work, not anyone can do this, but the people who do volunteer work at this event and the Special Olympic staff members are the best people I have ever volunteered for. I for one am grateful to Mike, John, Douglas and Michael for their support, I think I received the best radio operators the club had to offer.  Special thanks to all W6TRW club members for a job well done.

— Scott, KI6KWI

Click the link below for photos.

Continue reading

Jun 09

W6TRW ARC Meeting June 9

W6TRW Monthly General Meeting

Roundtable Pizza, 4330 Redondo Beach Blvd, Torrance

Tuesday, June 9th at 5:30 pm

Speaker Topic:  Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS)

 

arisslogGet ready for the world of Amateur Radio on the ISS:  Hams in Space!  Charlie Sufana, AJ9N, will show us his latest work with ARISS and video of a radio contact with an astronaut.  AJ9N and ARISS have been inspiring students as an interface between the schools and NASA.

Please see the ARISS flyer.  This will be a very interesting and informative presentation, and should be relevant to our planned satellite contact effort at Field Day.  Perhaps some W6TRW members can share their satellite, MIR or ISS contact experiences.

 

 

 

May 28

W6TRW Field Day June 27-28

IMG_0826The W6TRW Amateur Radio Club returns this year to Deane Dana Friendship Park in San Pedro for Field Day.

Since the first ARRL Field Day in 1933, radio amateurs throughout North America have practiced the rapid deployment of radio communications equipment in environments ranging from operations under tents in remote areas to operations inside Emergency Operations Centers (EOCs). Operations using emergency and alternative power sources are highly encouraged, since electricity and other public infrastructures are often among the first to fail during a natural disaster or severe weather.

W6TRW plans to set up 7 separate stations operating simultaneously on HF through UHF in the park using emergency power generators. We’ll also use solar power, batteries, and satellites for communications and set up a special youth station operated by scouts.

Setup will start on Friday, June 26. Field Day operating will be from 11:00 AM Saturday, June 27 until 11:00 AM Sunday, June 28. Sunday afternoon will be teardown of the towers, antennas, and equipment and cleanup of the site.

All of this can’t happen without a lot of dedicated people. We’re looking for help setting up, operating, and teardown afterwards. If you are interested in participating in Field Day with W6TRW, contact Club President and Field Day Chair Greg Shreve by clicking on the “Contact” tab on the web site and sending your message.

We will have a great event and great activities. Come out and join us and learn what fun amateur radio can be and how to get your amateur radio ‘ham’ license before the next disaster strikes.

More details are on our Field Day page.

 

May 27

FCC Eliminates Vanity Call Sign Fee

VanityFeesThe FCC has found that it costs the agency more to process the regulatory fees for amateur radio vanity call signs and other services such as GMRS than the fees themselves cover. Rather than increasing the rate, the FCC has decided to eliminate them altogether. This change will not go into effect until the required congressional notice has been given, which typically takes at least 90 days. Any fees paid prior to the institution of the change will not be refunded. This is great news and a welcome change from the tedious fee recovery process that has been normal.

From the ARRL:

The FCC is eliminating the regulatory fee to apply for an Amateur Radio vanity call sign. The change will not go into effect, however, until required congressional notice has been given. This will take at least 90 days. As the Commission explained in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, Report and Order, and Order (MD Docket 14-92 and others), released May 21, it’s a matter of simple economics.

“The Commission spends more resources on processing the regulatory fees and issuing refunds than the amount of the regulatory fee payment,” the FCC said. “As our costs now exceed the regulatory fee, we are eliminating this regulatory fee category.” The current vanity call sign regulatory fee is $21.40, the highest in several years. The FCC reported there were 11,500 “payment units” in FY 2014 and estimated that it would collect nearly $246,100.

In its 2014 Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) regarding the assessment and collection of regulatory fees for FY 2014, the FCC had sought comment on eliminating several smaller regulatory fee categories, such as those for vanity call signs and GMRS. It concluded in the subsequent Report and Order (R&O) last summer, however, that it did not have “adequate support to determine whether the cost of recovery and burden on small entities outweighed the collected revenue or whether eliminating the fee would adversely affect the licensing process.”

The FCC said it has since had an opportunity to obtain and analyze support concerning the collection of the regulatory fees for Amateur Vanity and GMRS, which the FCC said comprise, on average, more than 20,000 licenses that are newly obtained or renewed, every 10 and 5 years, respectively.

“The Commission often receives multiple applications for the same vanity call sign, but only one applicant can be issued that call sign,” the FCC explained. “In such cases, the Commission issues refunds for all the remaining applicants. In addition to staff and computer time to process payments and issue refunds, there is an additional expense to issue checks for the applicants who cannot be refunded electronically.”

The Commission said that after it provides the required congressional notification, Amateur Radio vanity program applicants “will no longer be financially burdened with such payments, and the Commission will no longer incur these administrative costs that exceed the fee payments. The revenue that the Commission would otherwise collect from these regulatory fee categories will be proportionally assessed on other wireless fee categories.”

The FCC said it would not issue refunds to licensees who paid the regulatory fee prior to its official elimination.

 

May 19

Special Olympics Radio Support

special olympicsSpecial Olympics Summer Games at California State University, Long Beach provides a great training opportunity for anyone wishing to develop their radio communication skills, with many different scenarios that occur during this event.

The date of the games is 13-14 June 2015, but you must sign up to volunteer before the end of May.  Please contact Scott Marsiglia KI6KWI now to learn more and to get the sign-up form.

This is an interesting and varied radio opportunity, and a big help to a great organization.  The activities of the radio volunteers include:

  • Operators are assigned to a venue, basketball, aquatics, tennis and so on
  • If the venue director needs anything, water, medical staff, facilities access or other resources, the radio operator passes the message regarding the needs of the venue director via radio
  • In some cases, we assist with lost and found
  • Sometimes athletes need to find their coaches
  • We also pass on reports of lost athletes and emergencies that may come up
  • We also find out information for just about anyone who asks

The radio activities are coordinated by a southern California amateur radio organization that has worked this event before, so there is good experience and proper organization going into the event.