Welcome to Smoky Mountain Amateur Radio Club (SMARC)

Would you like to know more about amateur (ham) radio?

Are you a licensed ham and new to the area, been here forever or just have an interest in amateur radio, consider joining SMARC. Our 90+ members would enjoy meeting you, making a new friend and sharing the excitement. One good way to learn about SMARC is to join a Zoom session either every M-Th at about 8:30am to 10:15am or at a monthly meeting. Click the Join Zoom Link below. Passcode is w4olb. Are you already a ham and just need to ask a question and do not know who to reach out to, just click the Email us button below and ask your question.

The next SMARC meeting is January 24, 2022

Meetings are the 4th Monday, at 7:00pm. Most start arriving before 6:45pm. Typical agenda will be recognizing guests and introductions, reports, announcement and then a program. The meeting will be back at the United Steel Workers, Local 309, in the lower level and via Zoom.

Please also take note:

President Bob is planning to come early to do radio re-programming if you need assistance to get your code plug up to date. 

The Treasurer will be present collecting dues for 2022.

NOTICE: The New SMARC Fusion Repeater is OPERATIONAL in the AMS Mode, 

                TX: 443.075 MHz, RX: 448.075 MHz, Tone Encode and Decode: 100.0 Hz

CLUB MAILING LIST

To get on our email list, just join our groups.io by clicking here. You will then be on an email list where you will be sent for more information and announcements of SMARC club meetings and activities. Just want more information or to contact SMARC leadership, click the button below to email us.

As a little background relative to SMARC, the early club history is described under the More tab on the ribbon above.

If you are not yet licensed, SMARC holds a regular Technician class and also routine FCC tests are given locally (see below). A Technician Class is coming in January.

  • You will need to obtain an ARRL Technician course book, about $25.  https://www.arrl.org/shop/Ham-Radio-License-Manual/
  • The SMARC Technician class is FREE, just your time
  • FCC Test is $10 - $15, depending on where you take it
  • A basic two meter portable radio can cost as little as $50, while a basic digital radio, $150 - $250
  • First year of SMARC Club membership as a new ham after completing the class is FREE ($25 per year thereafter)
  • Over time and we believe you will enjoy the hobby, likely you will want to acquire more used and/or new equipment 

A Few SMARC Highlights for January 

75th Anniversary Celebration. Charles is the Chair and will be providing a bit of information and plan for the event. Proposed date is the weekend of Oct 1-2, 2022.

Officers for 2022. Bob Wilson - President, Joe O'Boyle - VP, Bob Loving - Secretary and Dave Kaun - Treasurer

 SMARC is a corporation, presently an IRC 501c7. The president appointed a Tax Committee that has thus far created an update to the present club constitution to be voted on at the February meeting which will bring it into compliance with TN law. Work has begun on the potential of moving towards becoming a IRC 501c3. David Andrews (N1ESK) is chairing the committee.  

Bonfire. President Bob is thinking we should have a bonfire and Paul indicated they Boy Scout Troop he is involves with has a location. More to come.

Remember to try out the New Fusion Repeater. The frequency is 443.075 MHz w/100 Hz tone.

Blount County Emergency Communications Service

Blount County has another amateur radio organization, Blount Emergency Communications Service (BCECS), an Amateur Radio Relay League (ARRL), which is an active ARES group. This is not a club, rather a service group formed under the structure of the ARRL. ARES communications operators receive emergency communications training and offer services for the local community to such organizations as Blount County Emergency Management, Blount Memorial Hospital, the local American Red Cross chapter and other community organizations. 

In 2019, SMARC donated their communications trailer in support of the Blount County ARES group. A grant request was been submitted to Amateur Radio Digital Communications (ARDC) for funds to update the trailer and make some needed repairs. ARDC awarded a grant to BEARS. Planned upgrades include roof and door repairs, verifying air conditioner operation, a DC power system, improved lighting, new chairs and changes to the generator plus of course the addition of radios and antenna systems. 

The ARES group today meets at the Blount County 911 Center and its regular Thursday evening Net. Want more information? Contact the BCECS TEAMAPP button below and/or take part in the Net, it is open to all licensed amateur radio operators.

Weekly and Morning Nets

The Smoky Mountain Amateur Radio Weekly Net is held each Thursday at 7:00 P.M. on the W4OLB Club Repeater (146.655 MHz, Tone 100.0 Hz) with the backup repeater being the WB4GBI (146.625 MHz, Tone 118.8 Hz). All amateurs are welcome to take part. Net Control will ask only for your Call Sign, Name, Location and Affiliation. We also hold a simultaneous Zoom video conference which you are welcome to take part in by clicking here and using passcode 'w4olb'.


KK4XA Morning Net

Join the "The Bobs or Mike" every Monday through Thursday morning for the very informal KK4XA Morning Net beginning at 9:00 A.M. on the W4OLB Club Repeater (146.655 MHz, Tone 100.0 Hz) or the KK4XA DMR Repeater, 444.075 MHz, CC1, TG 314742. We also invite you to join the Zoom Conference, just click here and use passcode 'w4olb' to join the KK4XA Morning Net Zoom.

The W4OLB VHF Club Repeater and the KK4XA DMR Repeater are Linked

The KK4XA DMR repeater is connected to the internet via Brandmeister, thus these two repeaters can be accessed from anywhere by connecting to Talk Group 314742. 

New to Ham Radio or Want to Upgrade?

Smoky Mountain Amateur Radio Club is a social club with its membership having hundreds of years of combined experience in many of the various aspects of ham radio. Check out our local repeater, W4OLB (146.655 MHz, Tone 100.0 Hz). We meeting informally, in-person, at TCs restaurant in Maryville (see information in about TCs).
SMARC routinely offers a Technician licensing class to help newcomers get into the hobby. A Volunteer Examiner test follows the training class, typically on the last after a morning review. This training class is open to anyone interested in the hobby and you will learn the needed information to pass the FCC element 2 exam. To learn more about ham radio, click here.
For information on testing offered by SMARC and The University of Tennessee Amateur Radio Club please click here

Amateur (Ham) Radio Classes by ARRL Instructors and Testing by Official VEs

>>>>> NEXT TEST SESSIONS <<<<<

February 5, 9:30am - UTARC Knoxville Orthopedic Clinic, 1422 Old Weisgarber Rd, Knoxville, TN

Please Call Ahead to Register: 865-254-3067

March 14th, 7pm - Parish House, St. Andrew's Church, 314 W. Broadway Ave, Maryville, TN

Walk-ins Welcome

SPECIAL NOTES - ALL TEST APPLICANTS

Applicants must use an FCC Registration Number (FRN) for all license transactions with the FCC. Examinees must register in CORES and receive an FRN before exam day. As of May 20th, ALL electronic batch filed applications that do not include a candidate's FRN will be rejected. The Social Security/Licensee ID Field will be disabled. The FCC will use the FRN rather than a Social Security number with all interactions after May 20th.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR OBTAINING AN FRN.  Register in CORES (COmission REgistration System) and receive your FRN (Federal Registration Number) before sitting for your exam to ensure your new license is processed quickly and easily through the FCC's ULS (Universal Licensing System). To conduct business with the FCC, you must register through FCC CORES and be assigned an FRN. This number will be used to uniquely identify you in all transactions with the FCC. View the FCC web page New Users guide to ULS for step by step instructions on the registration process or the Commission Registration System Video Tutorials page for videos that help guide CORES users through a variety of situations. For assistance, submit a help request on the FCC’s Support Services page or call FCC at 877-480-3201 (Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-6 p.m. ET

EXTRA CLASS AVAILABLE ON LINE

Free weekly, live, Extra Class Licensing course on Zoom beginning Thursday, January 20 through Thursday, March 31 (11 sessions). Sessions will start at 6:30, and run 3 hours. These are the classes sponsored by the National Electronics Museum that they have been holding for years.

Please contact: roland.anders@comcast.net

SMARC TECHNICIAN CLASS - Started January 11, 2022

SMARC trainers have started a Technician License class with a General class to follow. Technician class has started with intro completed but is still open to enroll. Note: Class is being held via Zoom. 

If you would like to obtain or register for the next class, please click here and we will contact you with more information.

SCHEDULE:

  • January 18th, 8pm EST: Lesson 2 - Radio Signals, Waves & Equipment Basics
  • January 25th, 8pm EST: Lesson 3A - Electricity, Components and Units 
  • February 1st, 8pm EST: Lesson 3B - Radio Circuits
  • February 8th 8pm EST: Lesson 4 - Propagation, Antenna Wave Basics, Feed Lines and SWR
  • February 15th 8pm EST: Lesson 5 - Modulation, Transmitters, Receivers, Digital Communications, Power Supplies & Batteries
  • February 22nd 8pm EST: Lesson 6 - Band Plans, Making Contacts, Using Repeaters, Nets, Supporting Public Service & Satellite Operating
  • March 1st 8pm EST: Lesson 7 - Licensing Terms, Band/Privileges, International Rules & Call Signs
  • March 8th 8pm EST: Lesson 8 - Control Operators, ID'ing, Interference, 3rd Party Communications, Remote/Automatic operation & Prohibited Transmissions
  • March 15th 8pm EST: Lesson 9 - Electrical Safety, Managing RF in Your Station, RF Interference (RFI), RF Exposure & Mechanical Safety
  • TESTING TO Be determined
  • In advance of taking the class please obtain an ARRL Technician Manual, about $25. Here is the link:

 https://www.arrl.org/shop/Ham-Radio-License-Manual/

Join Us for Our Monthly Meetings

The Smoky Mountain Amateur Radio Club Meeting: We are now again having our monthly meetings in-person at the United Steelworkers Union Hall, 339 S. Hall Road, Alcoa, TN. We meet the fourth Monday of every month at 7:00 P.M. Members and non-members are welcome to attend.

As a special note, meeting will also be on Zoom, please carve out the date/time. To join the Zoom video conference, click here. The passcode is w4olb. If you are not a member of our groups.io, please click here to join. There will be an email sent out to club members before each meeting including the credentials necessary to join the meeting. Thank you for your patience and we hope that you and your family are well.

SMARC also has a Club Board meeting the week before (3rd Monday of every month) at 7:00 P.M. via ZOOM video conferencing. Announcement of the meeting and any changes to the schedule will occur via email. All are welcome to attend this meeting.

Please Note: There are no meetings in June due to Field Day and in December, as this meeting is replaced by our Christmas Party. If you have any questions or need directions, please click here.


Regular Social Events

EVERY THURSDAY: Want to get involved in a face to face technical discussion? A number of members meet at TC's Grill on 2514 Old Niles Ferry Road, Maryville starting about 11:30am every Thursday. Just come in and look for the big group of folks in the back of the restaurant. All are welcome to stop by.

EVERY FRIDAY: We also welcome you to join a number of our members, spouses and guests for breakfast at TC's Grill on 2514 Old Niles Ferry Road, Maryville every Friday morning at 9am. Just come in and look for the big group of folks in the back of the restaurant. All forms of radio any other topics are likely discussed. See: S.M.A.R.C. (w4olb.org)

FOX HUNTS and PICNIC: This event will be planned as weather permits where the club sponsors a picnic and then has a fox hunt. Announcement of the event, location, time and date will be sent out via email to all registered on SMARC groups i/o. {NOTE: This event is subject to COVID restrictions.}

TAILGATE and POT LUCK: This event is usually held in the spring where members are invited to bring any ham related equipment to sell and then afterward for a pot luck with meat dish provided. {NOTE: This event is subject to COVID restrictions.}

CHRISTMAS PARTY: This event is held of course in December, in place of the normal club meeting where the meat dish is provided and attendees are required to bring a salad or desert to share. {NOTE: This event is subject to COVID restrictions.}

WANT TO KNOW MORE: Just go to the SMARC Team APP for most up to date information.

Field Day

The Smoky Mountain Amateur Radio Club has a long and rich tradition of Field Day operations. SPECIAL NOTE: This year, 2021, a successful Field Day was held at Smoky View Baptist Church, 2201 W. Lamar Alexander Parkway. 
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Traditionally located at Middlesettlements United Methodist Church Field of Dreams, the food is always delicious, the fellowship enjoyable, and our competitive results always among the top in our class. We want all of our club members and as many visitors as possible to come out to help, get on the air and enjoy. Make plans now to be a part of the greatest tradition in ham radio. Field Day is always the fourth weekend of June 2:00 p.m. Saturday until 2:00 p.m. Sunday. We begin setup at 8:00 a.m. during the cooler morning hours. Since our regular monthly meeting occurs on the fourth Monday each month, Field Day takes the place of the June meeting. Click Link below for pictures from 2018 and 2019: 
If you have further questions or need directions, please visit our about page, just click: here.

This Week's NCS

Larry

AL4B

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