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Shiawassee Amateur Radio Association [SARA]

Established: January, 1958 an ARRL Affiliated Club since 1961

"Whiskey 8 Quack Quack Quack"

Meets at: James P. Capitan Center, Lower Level; 149 E. Corunna Ave.; Corunna, MI 48817 Monthly: 2nd Tuesday @ 7:00

Club station located in the James P. Capitan Center - Lower Level.
Grid Square EN72wx   Latitude: 42.9819 N   Longitude: -84.1164 W   Alitude: 760 ft.

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CRIM Races needs Hams!

Greg Zaleski, N8FVZ, the Genesee County EC is looking for volunteers with 2 meter analog radios to work as spotters along the race course. There are three races on 24 August (Flint). He is short on help and looking for volunteers. The races run along similar pathes and he needs spotters to observe the route for assistance communication. See SARA minutes for August for some further details. The Genesee County ARPSC web site for a map and some details.

Call Greg to be a volunteer and for full details: [810] 624-2611.

You can register directly at:KC8KGZ web site.

Please assist if you can!

Next SARA Meeting:

SARA MEETINGS - Tuesday, Sep 10 @ 7:00 PM

ARES - Tuesday, Sep 10 @ 6:00 PM

SARA Meeting Plans:

  • 10 Sep 2019 @ 19:00 local
  • 08 Oct 2019 @ 19:00 local
  • 12 Nov 2019 @ 19:00 local
  • 10 Dec 2019 {Special Dinner}
  • 14 Jan 2020 @ 19:00 local

  See: SARA Meetings for Full Details

VE Testing - Thursday, August 22, 2019

    Thursday, October 24, 2019 (last 2019)

    No VE Testing Thursday, December 26, 2019

VE Testing Details and Hamswaps have details.

SARA Club Op-Events

  See: SARA Events - More SARA Information

ARES - Shiawassee Co.

ARES Meets on second Tueday of odd numbered months.

Start time: 18:00 local time.

Meetings are the same night as SARA Club and in same location, but use odd numbered months only. Schedule follows:

ARES Meetings:

  • 10 Sep 2019 @ 18:00 local
  • 12 Nov 2019 @ 18:00 local
  • 14 Jan 2020 @ 18:00 local

See SARA's Skywarn for WX support.

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Coax Data & SARA's Excel Worksheets

We have added a reference data page on coaxial cables to our reference area and then added some Excel worksheets for downloading.

For most of the 'what if' calculation requirements in the amateur radio field it is very hard to get better then using 'Excel Worksheets' (Copyright by Microsoft). The ability to modify input values and immediately see the resulting output values is great for the hobbyist. Here are some workseets for you to download, modify and use. If you have comments on these or suggested improvements please send feedback.

In general input values will be set up in a 'blue shaded' or 'yellow shaded' cell(s) for ease of identification. You may study and modify as you wish. General practice is for you to keep a 'backup' of the file - BEFORE - you modify values. if you 'over write' a cell that contains intermediate values or formulas, then the sheet will stop working properly. Recovery can become difficult, unless you have a 'backup' copy or come back for a new download.

Sheets were created in Microsoft Office 16 (2019) version. Details follow.

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Transmission Line Calculations

Microsoft Excel can make many simple transmission line and stub calculations easy. The worksheet assumes lossless transmission lines and operations at low SWR conditions. Results will depart from these calculations as you leave these assumptions. Use at your own risk and make sure results apply to your situation. The sheet can easily be modified to your exact needs. Input areas are 'shaded blue' and you can freely change values to fit your needs. It can replace a Smith Chart for many calculations.

The Transmission Line Calculation worksheet is divided into several functional areas. Inputs will be on the left side of the sheet and results for that function will be adjacent to the right.

List of Calculations available:

Tab # One ~ Resonance & Stub lengths
  • Resonating Inductance or Capacitance or Reactance (X) & Calculate 'Balancing Resonanting Component' Values
  • Convert Frequency, Wavelength (feet,meters,degrees)

    Line Length Calculations - need the Line Velocity Factor and Frequency (MHz)

  • Series and Parallel Equivalent Values

    Needs Resistive and Reactive Component Input Values

  • Reactance values for Transmission Line Stubs
  • Antenna load converted to reactance along a line's length

    Yields SWR at Antenna and allows you to modify step size in table values.

  • Impedance Value Transform

    Starting at Antenna Load Reactance and moving towards 'Input Point' (assumes lossless line).

Tab # Two ~ Coaxial Physical Values Table

Many popular coaxial cable types are listed with physical values -- look for those velocity factor values needed in the 'Resonance & Stubs' tab. Includes both metric/English units.

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Beam Headings Worksheet

Using Microsoft Excel you can to have your own 'Beam Headings' calculator, just try out our spreadsheet. The sheet can easily be modified to your exact location to meet your needs (location #1). It is setup for printing a list to many DX locations.

INSTRUCTIONS are contained on a tab in the worksheet.

SARA's Excel Files for Download:


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2019 Field Day [FD]:

2019 FD Setup

2019 FD Setup at Fairgrounds

2019 FD Group

2019 FD Teardown Group

We had a great time! Operated 4A and had about 20 people. Steve Smith, WA8LMF from Okemos, setup a separate operation near us.

Weather was great, People were better and only gained 2 lbs. = SUCCESS

THANK YOU to all who participated!

See the SARA Events page for 'June' for additional photos.

Our next planned operation at this time is "November Sweepsstakes" stay tuned in!

SARA Interests

Links out to different page(s)

Shiawassee Amateur Radio Association


Welcome to the Shiawassee Amateur Radio Association [SARA] internet Web site. SARA is a non-profit amateur radio organization in lower central Michigan (Shiawassee County) dedicated to public service, emergency communications, and the advancement of amateur radio through education and technical excellence. Our club call sign is W8QQQ. Listen for "Quack-Quack-Quack" on the air and give us a call ! Members are allowed to operate the station on a scheduled basis.

For detailed monthly meeting schedule information see: SARA Meeting Schedule.

Check out more club details on the 'top menu tab' labeled "SARA Club". That page links to various club details via additional links.

SARA invites anyone with an interest in amateur radio or public service to come to a meeting and/or join our club. Meetings are generally the second Tuesday of the month at 7:00 PM (check meeting schedule link as we do not always meet on all months). Dues are $15.00 a year prorated at 1/2 year intervals {For new licensee - we give a period of 'no club dues' to all new licensees - come on in and check us out!}. You can join our group at any of our monthly meetings or by contacting Dennis Phillips, KC8ETW, Treasurer at KC8ETW (email) or email us at W8QQQ <at> arrl.net.

SHIAWASSEE County Hams ~ Please review and report your status for the SARA's ARPSC [ARES/RACES] Local Inventory Form.  We are keeping a log of capabilities and contact information for Emergency Management in Shiawassee County. This is for ALL Shiawassee County Hams (not just club members). Email your data to:   W8QQQ <at> arrl.net. Shiawassee County Emergency Coordinator [EC] is Phil Bates, AC8FW, and he works with our Homeland Security contacts. Let Phil know if you would be willing to assist with county EMMCOMs. We have about 200 hams in the county, but only about 20 in the SARA club ~ and not all want to work EMMCOMS!

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SARA's Social Grouping

We have a Google Group that is open for all to join. SARA's Google Group is called "W8QQQ" and we invite anyone interested to join us. It is free to join. Click on the link to get started. If you join you will get notifications on some important 'local' ham information when it is published (meeting notifications, etc.).

... and a GREAT BIG 73! de W8QQQ  
Hope to see you at a club meeting soon!

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SARA's Club History

January, 1958 ~ Today

The Shiawassee Amateur Radio Association [SARA] was founded in January, 1958 (we are over 60 year old). The club received the call W8QQQ in honor of Richard Sternaman of Owosso. Richard was one of the club founders and passed away shortly after the club began. The callsign, W8QQQ, was Richard Sternaman's from the fall of 1952 through 1956 (probably until his death). Then in 1958 the club obtained W8QQQ and 'Wiskey-Eight-Quack-Quack-Quack' has been active on the air since that time. SARA is an ARRL affiliated club and our VE testing uses the ARRL VE program.

Emergency Communications and Public Service have important to the SARA club from inception. In 1961, the club was contacted by the State of Michigan to provide communications for the dedication and opening of the freeway M78/M69 (now called I-69). The SARA club was incorporated as a non-profit organization by the State of Michigan in 1961. Then it was on 20 Nov 1961 that SARA became an affiliated club with the ARRL, thus 2019 marks 58 years of ARRL support. In July, 1964, SARA members were on hand to help county health officials distribute the Sabine polio vaccine which was a large undertaking at the time. In a project called 'SOS', over 300 radio messages were handled for recipients of the drug by the club.

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In the early 1970's the club participated in the First Annual River Daze Event (later to become the 'Curwood Festival'). SARA held it's first Swap and Shop in 1975. In January, 1978, a very bad snow storm hit the mid-Michigan area and SARA emergency communcations assisted several county and local government agencies with communications. On the first night of the storm word was passed through SARA's the system that a "kidney dialysis patient" in Owosso required transportation to Flint for a treatment (a very critical need). While trying to arrange that transportation, a second patient was found to need similar transportation. In working through the system, it was decided that SARA members would take the lead in getting the action required. SARA setup ground transportation to get both patients into Durand, where a special 'snow train' had been setup for the transportation into Flint. The patients got to Flint for their treatments and were spared facing further threat to their lives. SARA members were very proud of this experience and proving that hams are a "great community resource" and provide valuable service when needed.

The 1980's brought SARA to the forefront in fighting for amateur radio rights. Members stood firm in the opposition to restrictive tower and antenna ordances and had them removed from the books. This was a year prior to when the FCC issued it's ruling on PRB-1. PRB-1 was a ruling limiting local authority from imposing restrictions on amateur radio antenna's. Also, SARA was involved when local cable TV companies started broadcasting on amateur frequencies. SARA was able to force the cable companies to 'clean up their act' and use proper frequencies. At one point the FCC was in the area monitoring and checking to insure the signals were legal, this action was based largely on SARA's inputs to the FCC.

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The 1990's and 2000's brought addtitional challenges to our group. The use of personal cell phones and home computers (utilizing the internet) have greatly changed the communication needs of the general public. The terror attack on the World Trade Center (2000) and a revised focus on emergency communication coordination resulted in Homeland Security being formed. 'Homeland' depends on radio amateurs to fill needs during emergency operations. SARA continues to train and work with the Depeartment of Emergency Management to retain coordination and support for emergency communications in our county's community. We have active RACES / ARES groups. Cell phones and 'wired' internet become nonoperational in most large scale emergemcies. Hams seem to always step forward and come through to meet community requirements.

SARA works with the 'NOAA' and 'National Weather Service [NWS]' in the 'Skywarn' program to provide weather/storm spotting and inputs to the severe weather evaluation program. So the club still retains a strong focus on community reporting and supports NWS/NOAA. We help support the local repeater networks that have continued to progress with digital processes and connection to world networks through use of the internet. We hold our annual Field Day operations and display our practice of setting up in emergency conditions and demonstrating our ability to communcate in the field. So, SARA is still doing 'the good things' for our local community. If you have a desire to assist (and have some fun along the way), come join us.

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SARA meets at the County EOC / Homeland Security Office in Corunna (James P. Capitan Center) on the second Tuesday of each month (except December). In the Fall of 1962 Club was at 219 W. Exchange St. (downtown) and then moved in the fall of 1969 to the Red Cross; 1302 W. Main St. The Red Cross moved (2000) to 708 Corunna Avenue, Corunna, and SARA went with them. The club had an operating station room at the Red Cross ~ W8QQQ. We had linkage into the stae emergency operations center (Lansing). The club was asked to exit the Red Cross building (2015) and moved first to a county facility (in Corunna) for a few meetings and then we went to Baker College Bldg. 16 (room 1632) in the fall of 2015. We had a location for the W8QQQ station at the college.

At the October, 2017 meeting the club voted to move the club meeting to the James P. Capitan builing in Corunna, this is the EOC building (lower level). Starting in November of 2017 we started using the James P. Capitan Center location for our meetings. Our current station trustee is: Tom Carpender, KI8AS. Moving our station, W8QQQ, to the Capitain Center allows operation from the Shiawassee county EOC for when/if it is required.

We are going through the older minutes files for more detailed information and we may post more when completed. We have recent club meeting minutes available 'online' (starting with Jan-2014).

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Shiawassee Amateur Radio Association

Web Surfing ~ General Web Item

This "Web Details" link leads to W8QQQ Web Design Page which links to our thoughts on Web design and contains hints and warnings for our site and general internet browsing. Please take the time and review it and you may find increased efficiency and security searching the web in general. Also, look at our Web Site Map {link} that may assist you in finding information that interests you on our site. Our 'search box' allows limiting searches to our site OR searching the entire Web, select the correct button choice as you desire.

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