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San Luis Obispo Bicycle Club

HAM Operator Information

Wildflower Frequencies

Frequency Offset PL Tone Freq Tactical Name
146.835 minus 127.3 Wildflower 1
146.670 minus 127.3 Wildflower 2
  • Use the Wildflower 1 frequency when possible.

Coverage Problem Areas

  • Northern end of Huero Huero Road (about 2 miles before highway 58)
  • Parts of Shell Creek Road (spotty coverage all along the road)
  • Highway 58 near La Panza Road

Lighthouse Frequencies

Frequency Offset PL Tone Freq Tactical Name
146.860 minus 127.3 Lighthouse 1
147.360 plus 127.3 Lighthouse 2
146.670 minus 127.3 Lighthouse 3, Alternate Frequency
146.620 minus 127.3 Lighthouse 4, Primary Frequency
  • Use the Lighthouse 4 frequency when possible.
  • Coverage is spotty along Old Creek Road between Highway 1 and 46

Radio Installation & Connection

Locate the radio in a place where you can reach it conveniently and see the display.

Connect the microphone to the radio.

Place the antenna on the roof of a car or in an elevated place if no vehicle is available. If a car roof is used, locate the antenna as close to the center of the vehicle as possible.

Route the antenna cable to a door or window. AVOID KINKING THE CABLE. Secure the cable as much as possible.

Connect the antenna to the radio.

Connect the radio power cable to a cigarette lighter outlet. The radios have been set to a power level low enough to avoid excessive current requirements.

Basic Radio Operation

Rotate the volume and squelch controls fully counter-clockwise.

Turn on the radio by pressing the red power button.

Turn up the volume control until the noise is at an acceptable level.

Turn up the squelch control just past the point where the noise goes away.

Use the large dial to select the desired communication channel.

Use the push-to-talk button (PTT) on the microphone to transmit. Be sure to push the button and wait about half a second before speaking.

NEVER press the PTT button without an antenna connected. Doing so can damage the radio.

If you are unable to make contact on your current frequency, try another one. We should have reasonable course coverage, but it will vary from place to place and from time to time.

We will cover methods to know whether you are getting out; it's too hard to describe in words.

Polite Operation

As a member of our HAM communications team, you are providing the communications for the event and are key to its safety and smooth operation. Your communications will provide the overview of how the event is going and what areas need attention. Above all, remember to enjoy the day, people and process.

Wait until the frequency is clear before attempting to transmit. We have two ears and only one mouth so we're supposed to listen twice as much as we speak.

Use plain language to communicate. Ham's don't use "10" codes or any other secret languages. If the answer to a question is "yes", just say "yes".

When calling another station, say the other station's name first followed by the name of your station. Then wait for a response. For example, "Net Control, this is SAG 3".

Always conclude your conversation with your call sign (such as AI6MD).

If you have vital information for a conversation taking place between others, say "Break" quickly between transmissions of the others in the conversation. Someone will let you in the conversation by saying something like "Go break".

Let the net controller know when you are going to be away from the radio and for how long you will be away.

Likewise, let the net controller know when you return.

Radio communication should be used for relaying information directly relating to the event. Please do not tie up the channels with casual conversation.

Refer to "SLOBC HAM Radio Operation" below for specific instructions related to operating during an event.

SLOBC HAM Radio Operation

During the SLOBC's public bike events wide area communications are needed to coordinate the event and to address the changing needs during the event. Amateur radio is ideally suited to provide this service. The following outlines the requirements for the radio operator and explains how the operations during a biking event vary from typical radio operation.

Operation During SLOBC Events

Frequencies to be used during the event will be announced prior to the date of the event. The frequencies vary depending on the location and available area repeaters.

Tactical call signs are used during events to clearly identify stations. The tactical call signs are used in addition to your FCC-issued call sign.

Tactical call signs are assigned by the net controller for the event. These might include names like "SAG 3" or "Shell Creek". Sorry, but "Ratchet Jaw" and "Moon Buggie" are not acceptable tactical call signs.

You must use your FCC-assigned call sign at the end of every communication or every 10 minutes while transmitting. In a bike ride event it is very unlikely that you will be transmitting for 10 minutes. See the example below for proper usage of your tactical call sign and your FCC-issued call sign in an event.

All communications takes place through the net controller. For example, if a SAG vehicle wishes to contact a rest stop, the radio operator in the SAG vehicle must first contact the net controller to request permission to speak with the rest stop. This allows the net controller to set communication priorities and to insure the smooth flow of information.

When your shift is done, be sure to sign off with the net controller.

For specifics on handling ride situations, please consult with the ride logistics captain. The intent of this document is to provide a framework for radio usage only.

Example: Station Coming On Line

Rest Stop Operator: Net control this is KG6TIA.

Net Control: This is net control. Go ahead KG6TIA

Rest Stop Operator: I will be the Shell Creek rest stop operator. I am on site and set up.

Net Control: Thanks very much. Can I get your name, please?

Rest Stop Operator: This is Madeleine.

Net Control: Thanks Madeleine. I will be calling you by the tactical name "Shell Creek" today. Thanks for helping out. AI6MD

Rest stop operator: OK, thanks. KG6TIA

Example: Communications During Event

SAG Operator: Net control, this is SAG 3.

Net Control: This is net control, go ahead SAG 3.

SAG Operator: We are leaving the Park Hill rest stop headed for Creston. We are transporting a rider. He has a mechanical problem that will keep him from continuing. The rider's name is Fred Jenkins.

Net Control: Thanks for that SAG 3. Was the rider with anyone who needs to be notified about his location?

SAG Operator: No, he told his group before we left.

Net Control: OK, thanks. AI6MD

SAG Operator: KG6TIA

In this example, note that FCC-issued call signs were only used at the conclusion of the communication. You do not need to use your FCC call sign during the communication. You do not need the tactical call sign with your FCC call sign at the end of the communication. Also, note the lack of casual chatter. All radio communications should be kept as short as possible. Remember that all communications are public. Expressing opinions or non-factual information is discouraged (ie: "This guy doesn't know how to ride").

Example: Station Going Off Line

Rest Stop Operator: Net control, this is Shandon Lunch Stop.

Net Control: This is net control. Go ahead Shandon Lunch Stop.

Rest Stop Operator: All riders have left this stop and we are closing down.

Net Control: Thanks very much. I enjoyed working with you. The Shandon Lunch Stop station is now closed. AI6MD

Rest Stop Operator: Later! KG6AKL

In this example, note that it was clear that the station was going to shut down. Communications are brief, but they can be pleasant as well.

Packing the Radio

Turn off the radio by pressing the red button. DO NOT disconnect the antenna with the power on.

Disconnect the power cable from the cigarette lighter outlet.

Disconnect the microphone from the radio.

Disconnect the antenna from the radio.

Coil cables and use wire ties to keep them neat. DO NOT kink the antenna cable.

Place the radio, microphone, power cable, manual, and this sheet in the plastic tote.

Return the plastic tote and antenna to Net Control.