Sawnee Amateur Radio Association

An amateur radio club for the Forsyth County Georgia Area

Welcome to the Sawnee Amateur Radio Association

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SARA is one of the premier clubs in the North Georgia area. Presently, we have over fifty active members. The club and its members are actively involved in many different amateur radio activities. Some members enjoy just rag-chewing, or operating CW, SSB, VHF SSB, or QRP. Others enjoy chasing DX, or working satellites, or building equipment and antenna systems.

The clubs main emphasis is to assist local communities with special events and their communications needs. We also like to promote the public awareness of the ARRL Field Day event held every June. SARA has been honored with two national “First Place” finishes in our class, during past Field Day events.

If you are just starting out in amateur radio, we invite you to one of our upcoming events or meetings. Let us introduce you to our hobby while you visit one of the best clubs in the area.

May 9, 2016 Club Meeting

Joe Spear, W4WT Noise Tracking

Remember that in the news email we sent recently, which talked about the fox hunt, we mentioned that it was related to our program? Well, what is the reason for the fox hunt? It sharpens our ability to locate sources of radiation. The source may be a rogue transmitter, or it may be that bane of all amateurs’ existence, power line noise. W4WT happens to be a world-class expert in tracking down line noise, and working with the power company (when appropriate) to eliminate it. And he will share his secrets with us!

Oh, that’s Joe’s little antenna on his small 70 foot tower.W4WTTower

Joe was born in Panama City, Fl. He received his Novice ticket in 1963 at the age of 15 and had the callsign WA4OLP. The following year he obtained his General class license. Joe entered the USAF in 1967 and did one tour in Southeast Asia (SEA) in 1972 in airborne communications, flying missions over Laos and Vietnam aboard the Airborne Battlefield Command and Control aircraft (ABCCC) which were based first in Korat then in Udorn, Thailand.

After returning from SEA, Joe finished his enlistment at Eglin AFB in Florida and moved to Atlanta to work for IBM in 1975 as a Customer Engineer on large systems. He received his Extra class license in 1980. In 1981, Joe left IBM and moved to American Samoa and received the callsign AH8B. He lived in American Samoa until 1985 when he moved down to Fiji for a year and had the callsign 3D2FR. He moved back to American Samoa and remained until he returned to the U.S. in 1988 and rejoined IBM where he worked until he retired in 2006.

Joe holds an Amateur Extra license and obtained the vanity call W4WT in 1997. He has been licensed over 50 years and has worked over 335 countries, holds DXCC on 8 bands, has the WPX award of excellence, DXCC Challenge (1885 currently), Triple Play award, VUCC on 6m, 5 band WAS, and is in the A-1 Operators Club.

Joe has been an avid builder of Amateur Radio gear his entire Ham career and has

W4WT Homebrew Amplifier

W4WT Solid State Amplifier

designed and built numerous antennas, amplifiers, radios, and designed, programmed, and marketed one of the fist logging programs in the late 80′s called HyperLog. This program was discontinued in 2004 as work pressure didn’t allow time to continue its development. His current project, that has just entered the testing and adjustment phase, is a legal limit LDMOS solid state amplifier operating on 160-6m. The amplifier is a W6PQL design with modifications Joe made to allow the selection of up to two exciters and up to four antennas from the front panel as well as other enhancements to allow it to work well with Joe’s Anan 200D SDR. Wow does Joe ever do beautiful work!

Eatin’

Marie's Italian DeliWe always like to eat before a meeting.  If you can join us at 5:30 or even a bit later, we can have vittles together.  Our gastronomic consultant, Bryan, has found another good place to eat, by the name of Marie’s Italian Deli, http://www.mariesitaliandeli.com/.  It is in the Publix shopping center on the north side of GA 20 (GA400 Exit 14), 580 Atlanta Rd , Cumming, Ga. 30040.  Marie’s is in the 2nd building to the left of Publix, just past the Humane Society Thrift Store and the monopole cell tower (all hams notice towers, right?).  Here is a Google Street View of the restaurant front to show you what to look for:https://goo.gl/maps/ksJXJXkozMT2.

We’ll meet at Marie’s about 5:30, later if you need to, and adjourn to start the meeting at 7pm at  the Bennett Conference Center at Northside Hospital Forsyth, 1200 Northside Forsyth Drive, Cumming, GA 30041 . This is off of GA-400 Exit 14, off Ronald Regan Parkway. The Bennett Center is on the first floor of the 1400 building, directly across the drive from the (free) parking garage.  Enter at the building entrance and the conference center is directly behind the reception desk to your left.