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Next TLARC Meeting:  April 15, 2020  

We will again be meeting on our repeater (442.100) as a controlled net starting at 7pm. We'll soon be posting the topic of the main presentation that we'll have then. 


  • Mobile Operation:  An Experiment by Juan AC6ZM -- Juan recently tried operating "on the road" mobile on a trip driving from TN to OH.  He says "results were great and much better than expected" ... Read all about it here in his presentation documenting those results!

  • March Meeting Recap -- We tried something new this time by virtually conducting our meeting on the club repeater by having members check in at the normal meeting time. David N1ESK conducted some normal TLARC business, and the mic was then given over to Sam Howard KV4XY who expertly walked us through his slide deck telling us all about WSPR (pronounced "whisper"), the "Weak Signal Propagation Reporter". This digital communications protocol was designed and first implemented by Nobel laureate Joe Taylor, K1JT for weak-signal radio communication between amateur radio operators and for sending and receiving low-power transmissions to test propagation paths on the MF and HF bands.

  • February Meeting Recap -- If you missed the February TLARC meeting, you missed a good one. Goals for 2020 were presented, and a grant of $2500 was received. Click to view the Meeting Minutes and the presentation: TLARC Vision 2020. You will see that we’re looking for several volunteers to help with the efforts. Specifically, we need a few people to step forward to assist with:

    • Creating a club flyer, to be mailed to area hams who aren’t yet members of TLARC;
    • Designing a club logo for T-shirts, hats, etc; and
    • Reviewing the current Constitution and By-Laws for proposed updates and for compliance with IRS rules.

          If interested, please contact me (David N1ESK). Time moves fast, so we need to get started on these projects ASAP.

  • Hooray to TLARC's CQ World-Wide 160-meter Contest Team! -- Randy KG9M reports that the TLARC "Team 160" (KF4DKW, KK6OKU, KV4XY, KE4OTZ, KG9M) had record results this year: Contacts 333, Score ~49,980. (Last year: ~23,688) ... Quite the improvement, and they had lots of fun doing it at our club's remote site: God's Cozy Acres. Randy and David did a few things at the end of the contest to make setup easier next time.  (The contest was held over the weekend of Jan 24-26.)
         Operating Time: 34 Hours!
         Total op time: 19:02
         Total op time: 19:34
         Avg Qs/Hr:: 17.5

  • Solar Wind Animation -- I found this and thought it was pretty cool ... n2apb

    A NASA animation of the solar wind and the Earth's magnetosphere, and how the solar wind can reach Earth's atmosphere near the poles. [NASA/CILab/Josh Masters]

  • Tribander Trap Experimentation -- Juan AC6ZM has been doing some trap work and came across this excellent presentation that may also be of interest to others ,,, All You Need To Know About Tribander Antennas and Traps ...


  • December 2019 Meeting is History! ... The 2020 Officers slate was voted on and approved!  President DavidS KN4LMM, VP Sam KV4XY, Secretary David N1ESK, and Treasurer Brad KM4OJK.  'Thank you' guys for stepping up to lead TLARC in the coming year!  TLARC Team RunLoCo recognized (see item below). Great presentation by Randy WK9M on keeping *really* good accurate time using the Network Time Protocol (NTP) and his Raspberry Pi-based GPS hardware.  Randy's NTP presentation file and all meeting details coming shortly.  Thanks to members for attending, and especially to those who paid their 2020 dues.


  • TLARC Team RunLoCo Recognized at December Meeting ... Seven TLARC members were recognized for their gracious and capable communications support during the RunLoCo Marathon on December 7.  Coordinator Tim KE4OTZ formally thanked team members: Brad KM4OJK, Mike K4MJF, David KF4DKW, Jim K0RGI, Randy WK9M and Alan A1AT.  (Missing from photo: Brent K4BNN and Tom W8MKL.)  Thank you guys!


  • Secret TLARC Workshop Project Unveiled ... The Phaser ... A single-board, 4-watt Digital Mode SSB Transceiver for 80, 40, 30 or 20 Meters. Specifically designed for using digital modes with computers running WSJT-X and FLDIGI applications. All information and kit ordering info is at the Phaser website.

  • Solar Storm Forecast: October 24 ...  A Coronal Hole in the Strike Zone & A Meteor Explodes Over Wisconsin

     (This is a regular installment also found on Let me know if you enjoy this accessing this on our TLARC website ... de n2apb)


  • ARRL Propagation Charts (for December, from the East Coast) ... Here are some cool charts from the ARRL "Propagation" page to help us understand what areas around the world might hear us when on the HF bands.  Click the charts below for a more readable view, and see the text below the charts for an explanation of what these charts mean. 

    When are the bands open? These charts, generated using CAPman, show probabilities for average HF propagation in the month of December for the paths indicated. The horizontal axes show Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), and the vertical axes frequency in MHz. On 10% of the days of this period, the highest frequencies propagated will be at least as high as the upper red curves (HPF, highest possible frequency) and on 50% of the days they will be at least as high as the green curves (MUF, classical maximum usable frequency). The blue curves show the lowest usable frequency (LUF) for a 1500-W CW transmitter. For SSB or a lower transmitter power, the LUF will be somewhat higher than the blue curves indicate. See Oct 1994 QST, pp 27-30, and Feb 1995 QST, pp 34-36, for more details. The predictions assume an observed 2800-MHz solar flux value of 68. This is a Very Low level of solar activity. See the detailed propagation tables on The ARRL Antenna Book CD-ROM.  [This information, including the charts, is provided by the ARRL on their Propagation page.] 

  • 2nd TLARC Workshop: The Secret Project ... 8 club members participated in our club's 2nd workshop held at chez N1ESK - this time building a secret digital mode transceiver project of N2APB.  The kitbuilding skillsets ranged from novice-to-medium, and construction was straightforward while following a good assembly guide and some personal guidance.  We had reserved two afternoons this past weekend to complete the kits, and by the end of the second session five hams had successfully completed and tested their boards and immediately got on-the-air getting to achieve their first digital mode contacts!  The others needed some extra time to finish their assemblies, but plan to be on the air soon. Soldering skills were honed and everyone came away with newfound talents for winding toroids!


  • October 2019 Meeting -- Huge success!  This is just one man's opinion, but this was the BEST meeting we've had since I came down here 18 months ago.  The "project show 'n tell" was of such great great interest and I was intently listening and taking notes throughout the entire meeting.  AND when coupled with it being a PIZZA MEETING, well ... giddyup!!  Detailed notes and project photos are at our Show n' Tell web page.


  • On Being an ARRL-Affiliated Club ... If you have attended recent club meetings, you no doubt have heard discussions about us becoming an ARRL-Affiliated Club. Here's some more information and several documents describing the process and benefits. We'll be making a decision on this shortly.  Please consider the topic and information, and let me know your thoughts or concerns ... David N1ESK

  • TLARC Happenings ... Fall is here, and with it comes the start of contesting and general club activities again after the long hot Summer.  Our TLARC leadership team highlighted a number of contests (and other club activities) for each month of 2019 that best reflects the interests of its membership ... whether it be taking to the field with QRP, hiking up a mountain to do some QRO work, working from a homebrew or boatanchor station, or just operating from a nice and comfy position there in your own shack!  
    ==> Take a look at the ones listed on our Fall Happenings page and circle your calendar. Maybe plan to get together with another like-minded ham for a combined or instructive "adventure" of using CW, phone, or even the newest cool digital mode: FT8.

  • Smoky Mountain ARC ... Info on our neighboring club, as reported recently by Mike K4MJF and Sam KV4XY ...
    - Club repeater:  146.655, -600 offset, PL tone: 100
    - Location: Maryville, TN
    - Website:
    - Daily net: 9am (excluding Fridays)
    - Tech Lunch on Thursdays: Midland Restaurant
    - Friday breakfasts: 9am, TC's Grill
    - Club meetings: Last Monday of the month, 7pm, basement of Union Steel Workers of America Hall
      ** Note:
    Monday, Sept. 24, meeting will start at 6:00 pm with a swap meet followed by a BBQ dinner!

  • September Meeting was a Winner! ... Discussion of new antenna rules, the DXCC convention in Pigeon Forge this coming weekend. and various website additions: For Sale pages, Solar Storm Forecasts and Propagation curves for September.  Oh yeah, and watch your glucose readings too ;)  Take a look at the Meeting Minutes.


  • Tennessee QSO Party ...  Our participation results from this Sept 1st event are coming shortly. .

  • W4DXCC ... "Hello from W4DXCC 15 DX and Contest Convention. We are mere days days away from the Best DX and Contest Convention in the South East. We have the best equipment manufacturers at the convention ready to speak with you. For the latest News Go Here W4DXCC."


  • TN Section winner:  ARRL DX CW 2019 ... Our very own pres, Juan Lopez AC6ZM, teamed up with buddy K4OWR at Bill's QTH in Oakdale to operate a multi-single station ... to take FIRST PLACE in the Tennessee Section!  Over a 16-hour period, they used a Zero5 full size vertical with 35 radials, and two 160 meter band full size dipoles oriented east-west and north-south, and ran 1500 watts from an Ameritron AL-82 using an ICOM 7600, and N1MM+ logging software. Kudo's to Juan!!


  • East Tennessee 2 Meter Nets and Repeaters Directory ... An amazing resource of clubs and repeater frequencies within a 114 mile radius of Knoxville!
    ==> Mission: "To facilitate Ham Radio licensees getting full use and benefit of the 2 meter repeaters in ETN and to inform non Ham licensees of the possibilities with Ham Radio and motivate them to get their license."
    ==> Value And Purpose Of This Directory:
    > To help people get active in ETN Ham Radio
    > To Facilitate the finding of nets to listen to and clubs to attend.
    > Protect nets from interference.
    > Help new Hams to get a quick start in understanding and use of the 2 meter band.
    > Help non Ham (listeners) to get interested in the Ham Radio world by listening to nets. The hope is they will get
    interested enough to get their license.
    ==> Who? This is a work in progress (and will always be) and we need a lot of help. This directory was developed using Rtsystem radio programing software, RepeaterBook and SERA. For questions, corrections, and additions,
    contact: Bob Hill at
                           (Thank you Bob!! ... n2apb)


  • August 2019 Meeting: "Surge Protection, Isolation, Grounding & Bonding (Whew!)", as presented by Randy WK9M. See the cool  and informative presentation slides, photos and resources here!


  • TLARC For Sale Page -- Check out our latest website feature ... the new TLARC For Sale Page ... What a way to move your ham-related gear!  Only available for TLARC members to post items for sale (though our webmaster) for up to 3 months. Sellers accept all responsibilities for claims and ownership. Buyers purchase independently from TLARC and assume all risks. 

  • Minutes from July 2019 Meeting -- It was all about the wrap-up of our Field Day adventures!  The presentation made by Sam KV4XY will be available here soon.  And here are the Meeting Minutes.


  • ARRL Field Day 2019 ... with TLARC!  ... Success!  Click here to see all the details of our big event of the year!


  • Minutes from June 2019 Meeting -- It was a good one at which we brushed up our plans for the coming Field Day event.  Read the Meeting Minutes here


  • Waterproof logbooks for rugged field ops adventures
    We recently came across a really handy collection of pocket logbooks that are rugged and waterproof ... and just right for wet & wild field operations.  You need to give these guys a looksee!

  • Recap:  A QRP Field Ops Adventure by K0RGI and N2APB on June 1, 2019 -- Jim K0RGI and George N2APB took to the field on a fine and sunny 83-deg, low-humidity day ... Why?  Because we could, and it was the most glorious spring day we've had yet this year!  We went to the TVA Park on Tellico Lake, located near on the boat launch area one normally sees on the right when you turn left onto the ramp heading to Maryville.  (See map below - click for larger view.)  Birds in-air, boats lazily en route to some swimming hole and a mini-park with picnic benches,  parties happening under shelters and kids splashing in a roped-off area. Click on the video below to get a flavor that only scratches the surface of our outing. (Video will download, then double-click the .mov file to play it.) We had our usual antennas set up unobtrusively (Jim's PAC-12 mini vertical and George's 4'-diameter magnetic loop) and nobody bothered us.  Not even bugs!  Over the course of about 2-3 hours we made a large handful of contacts, ranging from PA to CA (and even an LA8 in Czechoslovakia!), then we packed up to go home. A fine outing it was indeed!



  • Minutes from May 2019 Meeting -- You didn't come?  Well, read all about it here



  • Membership Survey Results -- Click here to see the very interesting results of our first-ever Membership Survey, presented at the April meeting by David N1ESK, TLARC Secretary.


  • The Great Tower Drop of April 27, 2019  -- A team of TLARC members went out to Oakdale TN (Morgan County) to take down a huge tower and antenna array that was generously donated to the club by Bill Radice K4OWR.  See the photo essay within!

                      Left to right:  David KF4DKW, Bill K4OWR, Tim KE4OTZ, Randy WK9M, Emily KB1NXN, David N1ESK 

  • TLARC Field Nuts did it again on April 20 --  Saturday, April 20, 2019 marked the traditional first major QRP field event of the year - QRP To The Field. This year's theme was "Any Ole Park" and the TLARC Field Nuts set up our KN4DUA club station at the Tellico Family Park pavilion on Tugaloo Dr.  Recap to come soon!
        72, Juan AC6ZM and Randy WK9M


  • SOTA Gang I Stumbled Into On My Last Vacation To Roan Mountain TN On The AT -- from David KF4DKW.  If you haven't heard about Summits On The Air field ops, you're in for a treat. "Grassy Ridge Bald shares the same trail head as Roan High Knob.  Getting to the Grassy Ridge Bald trail head is a two hour drive from my house to Carvers Gap.  I left my house at 6:45 AM and went to the old law office of Scott, in Asheville (about halfway) to meet and carpool up to Carvers Gap.   We arrived at Carvers Gap about 9 AM.  We got out of the car and the wind was a steady 25mph or so with higher gusts." ... Read the entire blog.


  • GPS Clock Workshop -- Wow, what a time we had on Saturday, April 6.  Some 14 members gathered at N2APB's home and assembled their GPS Clock Kits in the first-ever TLARC Workshop!  Eight of us got the kit built and working without a flaw, while 3 others had some repairable issues, and 3 others had time-crunch issues in completing theirs.  See more pics inside.


  • Adventures of the TLARC Fantastic Five in Episode 4:  The Great Tower Retrieval

(Click on image)

  • Hello? Hello? Anybody out there?  -- A February without sunspots :(   See details at  Thanks to Mike Henry KM4H for the find.  The good news is that propagation is all uphill from here for the next 11 years!

                     Images Credit & Copyright: Alan Friedman (Averted Imagination)

  • TLARC February 2019 Meeting -- Sumptuous dinner beforehand (at Lorenzo's) and a great meeting right after, with a presentation from David N1ESK covering his recent trip to 2019 HamCation the week before in Orlando ... slides below and meeting minutes coming shortly!

                Download and view:   as PDF ... or as PowerPoint slides with embedded video on slides 18 & 46)

  • KN4DUA now a bonefide QRP member of NAQCC -- It's official, we are now a member of this very cool-and-fun national QRP group that sponsors a month-long "contest" ... every month!  The NAQCC events (called "challenges") throughout the year are based on using the letters in the stations contacted to fill out a "bingo card-like" grid to construct a set of words related by the monthly theme. See the RULES paragraph to learn how these wacky challenges work!  (The bingo card worksheet is a way to track progress, as shown in the tutorial.)


  • CQ RTTY WPX Contest ... our biggest score so far! - We activated KN4DUA with a big Team effort on Feb 9-10 and recorded the BIGGEST score of our recorded history!  All the member activity in the events leading up to this point are sure paying off, with team members this time including David KF4DKW, Mike KK6OKU, Brad KM4OJK, Sam KV4XY, Randy WK9M and Juan AC6ZM racking up the sweet score.  Full details and photos coming soon ... including those about the portabella mushroom & cheese steakburgers on the grill. (Those who participate are learning that partying, eating and drinking are wonderful side benefits of on-the-air activities with TLARC :)


  • Stealth Antennas ... New section for our website, exploring and discussing "stealthy ways" for TLARC members to get on the bands in HOA-sensitive communities.  For now just click on the desired antenna type below to learn more about that one.  Soon, we'll have a dedicated Stealth Antennas page full of additional tried-and-true antennas, references and guidance to enable us all to be on the air from 160m-70cm!


  • KN4DUA activated for FBYO Winter 2019 QRP Sprint ... It was rather short notice, but it was SO nice outside on Saturday Feb 2 that we activated the TLARC club call for the annual FYBO ("Freeze Your Butt Off") QRP Winter Field Day event!  This event occurs each year on the first Saturday of February, which is usually a cold winter day .. but we got a wonderful gift that day with a break from our cold temperatures so we grabbed our field antenna and headed for the hills!  George N2APB was located up at the Ft. Loudon Dam Overlook "grassy knoll" by the power station, and made enough contacts to (hopefully) get a certificate.

                      George N2APB working the "KN4DUA Station" with a W4OP Loop antenna and an FT-817 on his belly.

  • CQ World Wide 160-Meter Contest (CW) ... KN4DUA scores big at host WK9M QTH !!!  Operators this time included: WK9M, AC6ZM, N2APB, KF4DKW and KK6OKU.
    Click on any of the pics: (L-R) "Master Juan", "Sustenance", KK6OKU aka "The Man!", N2APB, and "The Score!"


  • Post-Holiday Club Dinner 2019 ... What a blast on Jan 19th at Classico's!  Great fellowship, great food and great fun ... 

  • North American SSB QSO Party (Jan 19) --  Great results from the KN4DUA club station on Jan 19th, operated at N2APB, with participating club members: Randy WK9M, Juan AC6ZM, George WB9TFR, David KN4LMM, David KF4DKW, Mike KK6OKU, and Sam KV4XY.   (Click on the photo!)


  • January 2019 TLARC Meeting ... Minutes and the Program: "Online HF Prediction Tools," presented by Juan AC6ZM.  Refer to the Voice of America Coverage Analysis Program (VOACAP).

  • Another "first" ... TLARC participated in the North American CW QSO Party on Jan 12-13 ... as a distributed team!  Randy (WK9M), George (N2APB) and Juan (AC6ZM) each operated from their own home stations under the registered name of TLARC Gold, and their impressive combined score have already been submitted.  Look for TLARC Gold in an upcoming issue of National Contest Journal!

  • ARRL RTTY Round Up contest  ... We activated the KN4DUA club station from Juan's QTH, from 6pm Saturday Jan 5 onward into the night and during Sunday.  Seven members helped us get a score of 17,892 ... nearly triple of what we did last year! Great Going TLARC Team!  (Operating time: 13 hrs 43 mins)


  • Results now posted for last month's 160 Meter Contest and KN4DUA scored in the top of our operating category!


  • TLARC Club Station KN4DUA ... was activated for ARRL Straight Key Night on Jan 1, 2019 ... (score coming shortly)

  • December 2018 Meeting Minutes ... It was a good meeting!  Read all about it here.

  • ARRL 160m CW Contest -- Some of our TLARC Field Nuts setup shop at WK9M on Dec 1-2 to work the club station KN4DUA in this annual Top Band contest!  Read all about our adventure here:


  • Run LoCo Marathon -- TLARC assisted with checkpoint communications in the recent (Dec 1st) marathon in Loudon County.  It was a chilly and wet day, but a good number of hearty members braved the elements to provide rest stop runner status via the club repeater.  "Thank You" to those participating: N4RPR, KF4DKW, KM4OJK, K4BNN, W8MKL, WK9M, KK6OKU, KN4LMM, K4XZT, K4TYS, K4MJF+Karen, and especially to communications organizer/director KE4OTZ. And BTW, the Lenoir City's News-Herald reported "Marathon runs without hitch!"
    (Click images below for higher res views.)




  • NEW ... Please enjoy "A Tail of Three Antennas" ...
    It was a cold-yet-sunny November 17th afternoon atop the Overlook Park at Fort Loudon Dam.  High tension power lines abounded leading in/out of the power generation facility, yet the airwaves were clear of that characteristic buzzing and the noise floor was low.  It was destined to be a good Field Nut day.  [Read more]


  • What is Ham Radio? -- Whether you are new to Ham Radio, or an OT in need of a refresher ... you'll find these resources very helpful in better understanding our wonderful hobby!

  • HamClubOnline - The online amateur club management system.  Active members of the club will receive an email stating they have been successfully added to the roster. You can log into the system for the first time by following the directions in the email  .. de Juan AC6ZM

  • New "TLARC Education Series" for October ... Learning Morse Code!  -- We're starting a new "Education Series" here on our TLARC website, wherein we focus on various specialties of our Ham hobby ... Emergency Communications, Contesting, Digital Modes, SDR, and more!  We're kicking things off this month with Learning Morse Code and will be providing lots of good resources for just that ... whether you haven't tried using CW on the air, or even if you have and want to improve your "fist".  See the first installment (video) below, and look forward to more cool, easy and free resources to appear soon on a separate page here in
    ENJOY ... and feel free to ask AC6ZM or N2APB about "anything Morse"!

(left-to-right): Dave KF4DKW, Sam KV4XY, Brad KM4OJK, Juan AC6ZM, Randy WK9M, George N2APB
(Not pictured:  Robert WW4WTF)


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Webmaster: George Heron, N2APB

Pages Last Updated: March 3, 2020