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                      THE CGC COMMUNICATOR
                            CGC #603
                   Tuesday, November 11, 2003
                             ________
               Robert F. Gonsett, W6VR, Publisher
                       <rgonsett@ieee.org>
           Stephen H. Blodgett, W7RNA, Letters Editor
                  mailto: steve@earthsignals.com
    Copyright 2003, Communications General® Corporation (CGC)
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  FOREST SERVICE'S RADIO SHOP ANOTHER VICTIM OF SAN DIEGO FIRE
  The radio shop for the Cleveland National Forest is yet
another victim of the San Diego fires.  The shop was located
at Sycamore Canyon which is southeast of Poway, near the top of
Pomerado Road near Scripps Ranch.  Also located there was the
microwave link between Santiago Peak and the Monte Vista dispatch
center in El Cajon.  A new 7 GHz microwave link was lost even
though it had not yet been cut into operation; it was a Harris
digital system.  Also demolished in the fire was the Forest's new
replacement radio repeater and base station equipment from
Daniels Electronics (about $400K).
  Our entire staff was at the Roblar II Fire at Camp Pendleton
when the Cedar Fire claimed the shop, six personal vehicles,
three fire patrol rigs and one engine.  Photos follow.
  Mike Wingate, Regional Incident Comm. Coordinator,
  USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Region
  http://earthsignals.com/add_CGC/CNF_Shop_Fire.htm
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  FCC ADOPTS ANTI-PIRACY PROTECTION FOR DIGITAL TV 
  A "Broadcast Flag" is said to prevent mass Internet
distribution of digital TV signals; consumer copying on existing 
analog equipment is said not to be affected.  (R&O and FNPR)
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-240759A1.doc
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-03-273A1.doc
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  FCC NEWS BRIEFS
  FCC announces upcoming AM application freeze, and window
for proposals for new AM stations and major modifications to
authorized AM stations:
  http://www.rwonline.com/dailynews/one.php?id=4119
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-03-3532A1.doc
  Industry leaders present over 50 recommendations to ensure
the reliability and security of media facilities in the event
of a national emergency (brief press release, not specific):
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-240852A1.doc
  FCC to hold Voice Over Internet Protocol forum December 1,
and to issue a Notice of Proposed Rule Making shortly thereafter
to discuss the Commission's ideas on imposing regulations:
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-240867A1.doc
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  FCC PROPOSES TO FINE AT&T CORPORATION $780,000 FOR APPARENT
  VIOLATIONS OF DO-NOT-CALL RULES
  The FCC has proposed a $780,000 fine against AT&T Corp. for
apparent violations of the Commission's Do-Not-Call telemarketing
rules.  The FCC found that AT&T apparently made telephone
solicitation calls to 29 consumers on 78 separate occasions after
those consumers had requested that AT&T not call them again, and
the Commission proposed a forfeiture of $10,000 for each of the
78 apparent violations.  (Adding a note of irony is that an AT&T
subsidiary was awarded the contract for maintaining the nationwide
registry of those who do not want to receive telephone
solicitations.)
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-240617A1.doc
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  THE BUG AND WEED PEOPLE LOSE ONE
  Environmentalists have complained to the FCC that 29
Applications to Register Antenna Structures on FCC Form 854
contained inadequate Environmental Assessments (EAs).  The FCC,
in turn, dismissed the allegations because the petitioners "had
not alleged sufficient facts to demonstrate that the proposed
antenna structures would cause [the petitioners themselves] to
suffer an injury, and that in light of the hundreds of EAs
received by the Commission each year, efficient conduct of the
Commission's business requires that the Commission limit its
attention to petitions that make specific allegations of harm
to the petitioners."
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-03-277A1.doc
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                      LOCAL & REGIONAL NEWS
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  EDITORIAL:  CONNECTING THE DOTS - AN EAS MELTDOWN OF SORTS
  The past few CGC Communicator newsletters have pointed
toward a partial meltdown of the Emergency Alert System (EAS)
serving the greater San Bernardino area during the wildfires
there.  The failures were not the fault of any one individual
or station; rather, they resulted from a series of unfortunate
events.
  Communicator readers have already seen pictures of the fire
that annihilated the LP-1's transmitter plant (KFRG).  That
station admirably scrambled to establish a temporary broadcast
facility on Box Springs Mountain.  Communicator readers also
read about the failure of the area's LP-2 transmitter (KGGI),
and that station also hustled to resume operations by using
Box Springs.
  Little noticed was the failure of the NOAA Weather Radio
(NWR) station on Strawberry Peak that serves the greater San
Bernardino area.  Here, however, there was no attempt to
construct an emergency replacement facility; the station
simply remained off the air for about a week until power and
phone line service were restored.  Working with the FCC's
Emergency Alert System, NWR is also an "all hazards" radio
network - but it is a "compromised hazards system" when the
key area transmitter is off the air.
  In addition to these transmitter failures, there were major
failures in EAS equipment and event encoding during the fire,
as documented on the LA EAS list server.  The "San Bernardino
Meltdown" - the combination of transmitter and EAS event failures
- should give EAS planners quite a case to discuss!
  Next week, the CGC Communicator will take a close look at
the NOAA Weather Radio system in our area, identifying the
frequencies and transmitter sites that are currently in use,
and giving other technical data of importance to local
communications specialists.
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                      LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
 (100 Words or Less - Weekly Deadline is Wednesday, 6 PM Pacific)
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  NEW WEDNESDAY NIGHT DEADLINE
  Please send any Letters to the Editor by Wednesday, 6 p.m.
Pacific Time, each week.  That will help us recover from the
flood of fire news and put us on a realistic schedule.  Thanks!
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  OTAY MOUNTAIN TOWER BENDS OVER IN THE SAN DIEGO INFERNO
  The Federal radio site on Otay took a hit during the Otay
Fire.  The tower got a little hot and the wind got a little
strong....  [In amateur radio, there is the old adage that if
your tower is still standing, it wasn't built tall enough.
Evidently the federal tower was sufficiently tall!  - RG]
  Alex Groza, mailto: alex@4d.net
  Photo at: http://earthsignals.com/add_CGC/Images/OtayFire.jpg
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  A THOUGHT ABOUT TOWER IMPEDANCE INSTABILITY
  Seeing KECR's collapsed tower (CGC #602) reminded me of a 1 kW
station where I was working in the 60s.  We had discovered that
the antenna impedance was higher than originally measured, so we
tried a number of things to determine the cause, but to no avail.
  Decades later, when the station went to 5 kW, the impedance
was found to be even higher.  The new transmitter had to be
retuned a number of times to achieve stability.  Finally, the
consulting engineer discovered that the impedance had gone back
to its original value.  It turned out that when the tower - a
used one - was relocated to the station's site, the rigger had
not bonded the sections together!
  This isn't the sort of thing engineers put on their checklist,
but it's something you might want to add to yours.
  Roy Trumbull, mailto: rtrumbull@bay.csuhayward.edu
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  HERE ARE SOME ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS ON TOWER GUYING AND FIRES 
  Some years back, when I was with the Motorola's Site Department,
we had a fire on Mount Vaca in Northern California.  Our tower was
in the path of the fire but the building and tower survived.  Upon
closer inspection it was noted that the bottom ends of the guy
wires were held with Rohn "Big Grips" or pre-forms and the fire
had burned the material used to provide the friction hold on the
guy wires.  Since then all have been replaced with wire, thimbles
and clamps.  We were lucky because no winds showed up and the
tower crew was able to re-guy the tower before it could fall.
  Since then the guy anchor points have brush cleared away and
the sites themselves have brush cleared at 30 feet out from the
fence line.  The expense of clearing brush is small compared to
the costs of fire damage or destruction.
  Paul Mason, WA6EUZ, mailto: wa6euz@earthlink.net
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  FIRE RESISTANT ROOFING MATERIALS MIGHT HELP TRANSMITTER SITES
  Those transmitter site photos in CGC #600 are reminiscent of
the 1993 destruction of KNJO's transmitter site on Rasnow Peak
above Newbury Park/Thousand Oaks.  The only difference is that
there was nothing at all left of KNJO-FM's Collins transmitter.
Like KNJO-FM, KCAL-FM's building had roofing material over wood
beams which were evidently flammable under brush-fire conditions.
  I often wonder if more fire resistant roofing materials would
make transmitter buildings less vulnerable to brush fires, and
minimize damage.
  Don Way, mailto: don358@yahoo.com
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  ON THE INAPPROPRIATE USE OF "MIRTS" DEVICES (CGC #602)
  In Delaware in the early 1990s, several experimenters built
a number of MIRTS units.  It made the commute from Wilmington to
Dover about 15 minutes quicker.  There were no laws there to
prohibit public use of these devices, and there probably still
aren't in many states.
  Some fire companies are not very responsible about the use 
of MIRTS.  Recently traffic was snarled for half an hour in one
Washington State community when a single truck responded to an
overheated car.  Although the truck was well off the road and was
allowing traffic to pass, lights at a very busy intersection
remained red in three directions during the entire incident.
  Linc Reed-Nickerson, W7HIE, mailto: linc@bycx.com
  [Several states are moving quickly to keep infrared traffic
signal control devices out of the hands of the motoring public
and to ensure that the technology's use is limited to emergency
responders.  (Washington Post  - RG)]
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  ARE SIRIUS RF MODULATORS IN RENTAL CARS HARMING FM?
  I recently rented a car in Seattle that was equipped with Sirius
Satellite Radio.  My concern was that when I pressed the FM seek
button, the receiver wouldn't stop on anything but the 88.5 MHz
Sirius modulator frequency.  I manually tuned to some of the local
FMs, but they were almost unintelligible.  Only after I turned off
the Sirius modulator did the FM receiver work normally.  I suspect
that the average listener wouldn't know enough to turn off the
modulator to receive FM, so I can't help but think that the
widespread use of these Sirius installations in rental cars will
be harmful to local FM listening.
  Jay White, mailto: jay.white@morris.com
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                          MISCELLANEOUS
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  CONSUMER FEELINGS ABOUT DIGITAL, SATELLITE EXPLORED
  The NAB is calling attention to a recent survey about
digital and satellite radio.  (Radio World article)
  http://www.rwonline.com/dailynews/one.php?id=4094
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  NEWS BRIEFS
  * The man suspected of vandalizing high-voltage electrical
towers in three western states by removing bolts has been
captured.  In an interview with the Associated Press, Michael
Poulin said his actions illustrate how vulnerable the power grid
might be to acts of terrorism.  (Sacramento Bee)
  * A 42-year-old New York man learned the hard way that
sometimes it's best to just let go of a cherished possession,
particularly if it's a cell phone that has fallen into a toilet
aboard a Metro-North Railroad train.  Thousands of commuters were
inconvenienced and other trains rerouted while fire fighters used
the Jaws of Life to dismantle the toilet and free the phone
owner's trapped arm.  (New York Times)
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           LOCAL ITEMS FROM THE FCC    (FCC TYPOS TOO)
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  CALL SIGN CHANGES GRANTED
  KRLH(AM), San Bernardino, to KTIE
  KIIS(AM), Canyon Country, to KHTS
  KACD(AM), Thousand Oaks, to KIIS
  New LPFM, Oxnard, to KOCC-LP
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-240564A1.pdf
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  FM TRANSLATOR APPLICATION FOR MINOR CHANGE TO A LICENSED
  FACILITY ACCEPTED FOR FILING
  BPFT-20031029ACQ  K288DR 72006 CALVARY CHAPEL OF TWIN FALLS, INC
               E   105.5 MHZ          DESERT HOT SPRINGS,, CA
  Minor change in licensed facilities
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  TV AUXILIARY TRANSMITTING ANTENNA APPLICATION FOR AUXILIARY
  PERMIT GRANTED
  BXPCT-20030805AAV  KTTV  22208  FOX TELEVISION STATIONS, INC.
                E   CHAN-11              LOS ANGELES, CA
  CP for auxiliary purposes
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  AM STATION APPLICATION FOR MODIFICATION OF LICENSE
  ACCEPTED FOR FILING
  BML-20031016ACR    KXTA  19219   CITICASTERS LICENSES, L.P.
               P   1150 KHZ             LOS ANGELES, CA
  Lic. to modify
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  FM AUXILIARY TRANSMITTING ANTENNA APPLICATION FOR LICENSE
  TO COVER AUXILIARY PERMIT GRANTED
  BXLH-20030729AEK  KPWR  35498  EMMIS RADIO LICENSE CORPORATION
               E  105.9 MHZ              LOS ANGELES, CA
  License to cover auxiliary permit.
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  AM STATION APPLICATION FOR DIRECT MEASUREMENT
  ACCEPTED FOR FILING
  BZ-20031024ABR      KTNQ  35673     KTNQ-AM LICENSE CORP.
              P     1020 KHZ             LOS ANGELES, CA
  Direct Measurement
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  LOW POWER FM APPLICATIONS FOR ORIGINAL CONSTRUCTION PERMIT
  ACCEPTED FOR FILING
  BNPL-20000605AKL    NEW  124517     VIDA ABUNDANTE
               E   94.3 MHZ         SAN BERNARDINO, CA
  Low Power FM CP New Stn.
  Settlement Agreement filed 10/30/03
  Petitions to deny this application must be on file no later
  than 30 days from the date of the notice accepting this
  application for filing.
  ____________
  BNPL-20000608AEG   NEW  124806  CALVARY CHAPEL OF REDLANDS, INC.
              P   94.3 MHZ                 REDLANDS, CA
  Low Power FM CP New Stn.
  Settlement Agreement filed 10/30/03
  Petitions to deny this application must be on file no later
  than 30 days from the date of the notice accepting this
  application for filing.
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  LOW POWER FM APPLICATION FOR ORIGINAL CONSTRUCTION PERMIT
  DISMISSED
  BNPL-20000605AJD   NEW 124426   CALVARY CHAPEL OF LAGUNA BEACH
              P   104.7 MHZ              LAGUNA BEACH, CA
  Low Power FM CP New Stn.
  Dismissed per applicant's request 11/4/2003 - no letter sent
  Settlement Agreement filed 11/3/03
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  BNPL-20000605AJX    NEW  124493    OUR LADY OF FATIMA CHURCH
               E   104.7 MHZ              SAN CLEMENTE, CA
  Low Power FM CP New Stn.
  Dismissed per applicant's request 11/4/2003 - no letter sent
  SETTLEMENT  AGREEMENT FILED 11/3/03
  ____________
  BNPL-20000605AKS    NEW  124547     VANGUARD UNIVERSITY
               P   104.7 MHZ         OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
                                         COSTA MESA, CA
  Low Power FM CP New Stn.
  Dismissed per applicant's request 11/4/2003 - no letter sent
  Settlement Agreement filed 11/3/03
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  FM TRANSLATOR APPLICATION FOR ORIGINAL CONSTRUCTION PERMIT
  DISMISSED
  BNPFT-20030818ADT   NEW  141900   SANTA MONICA COMMUNITY
               E   105.7 MHZ           COLLEGE DISTRICT
                                          JULIAN, CA
  CP New Stn.
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  TV TRANSLATOR OR LPTV STATION APPLICATION FOR LICENSE TO COVER
  ACCEPTED FOR FILING
  BLTTL-20031031ACL  KTRO-LP 56793  ROBERT D. ADELMAN
                 E   CHAN-50          LANCASTER, CA
  License to cover construction permit no: BMPTTL-20030115ABT,
  callsign KTRO-LP
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  TV TRANSLATOR OR LPTV STATION APPLICATION FOR LICENSE TO COVER
  GRANTED
  BLTVL-20030814AJL   K06MU  63149  BEAR VALLEY BROADCASTING, INC.
                 E    CHAN-6              BIG BEAR LAKE, CA
  License to cover construction permit no: BPTVL-20020909AAX,
  callsign K06MU.
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  DIGITAL TV APPLICATION FOR CP EXTENSION ACCEPTED FOR FILING
  BEPCDT-20031105AAO  KVYE-DT  36170  ENTRAVISION HOLDINGS, LLC
                  E   CHAN-22              EL CENTRO, CA
  Extension of time to complete construction authorized pursuant
  to a permit for a new DTV station: BPCDT-19991029ACL
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  TV TRANSLATOR OR LPTV STATION APPLICATION FOR ORIGINAL
  CONSTRUCTION PERMIT APPLICATION REINSTATED
  BNPTTL-20000831CDM  NEW 130067  EQUITY BROADCASTING CORPORATION
                E   CHAN-28               BARSTOW, CA
  Construction permit for a new station for BARSTOW, CA on
  channel 28, Effective Radiated Power 30.0, coordinates
  NL 34 deg 50 min 59 sec WL 117 deg 3 min 4 sec.
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  The CGC Communicator is published for broadcast engineering
  professionals in so. California by Communications General®
  Corporation (CGC), consulting radio engineers, Fallbrook, CA.
  Short news items are always welcome from our readers,
  and letters may be edited for brevity and clarity.  Letters
  to the Editor (Job Shoppe included) should be sent to
  mailto: steve@earthsignals.com.  For subscription and change
  of e-dress information, mailto: rgonsett@ieee.org.
  CGC Communicator articles may be reproduced in any form
  provided they are unaltered and credit is given to the CGC
  Communicator and the originating authors, when named.  Past
  issues may be viewed and searched at http://www.bext.com/_CGC/
  courtesy of Bext Corporation.  
  The views expressed in our newsletters do not necessarily
  reflect those of Communications General® Corporation, Bext,
  or the newsletter editors.
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