Our Club Station

The Wiregrass Amateur Radio Club (WARC) has a fully equipped HF, VHF, and UHF amateur radio station, located in the American Red Cross building, in Dothan, Alabama.  We are collocated with our local American Red Cross, because we are an ARRL affiliated club, and there is a statement of understanding between the ARRL and the American Red Cross.  As a support unit for the American Red Cross (ARC), the WARC Club Station consists of three operating positions:

  • Station 1. The first operating position is the Red Cross station.  This consists of a Vertex transceiver, and is fed to a vertical antenna.
  • Station 2. The second operating position is the HF Station.  This is an all-mode Kenwood TS-2000, which includes 6 meters, 2 meters, and 70 centimeters. A Cushcraft A4S yagi is available for 20, 15, and 10 meters, and an inverted vee, fan dipole is available for 80, 40, and 20 meters.  A dual-band vertical is the only antenna currently available for VHF and UHF.  Station 2 also includes a computer for logging, rig control, and digital mode operations.
  • Station 3. The third operating position provides a dual role.  A Yaesu FTM-400DR serves as a second VHF/UHF operating position to handle any overflow.  In addition,  Station 3 has provisions for members to bring in their personal HF transceiver and utilize any of the Club antennas.

The primary purpose of the WARC Club Station is to support its members in ARES activations and drills, to check in with HF nets, and as the W4DHN contest station.  All other use is deemed secondary.

Club members wishing to operate from the Club Station must (1) be a member in good standing, (2) complete a Club Station Orientation, (3) be certified by the Club Trustee, or his designee, and (4) comply with all ARC visitor rules and WARC operating requirements.

  • Use of the Club Station during “Normal” Business Operating Hours

The American Red Cross is normally open Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8:00 am and 5:00 pm (Note: ARC operating hours are subject to change, based on operational requirements and availability of staff).  To use the station during “normal” operating hours, you must sign in at the American Red Cross reception desk, and have a Club Station key.  Keys are available from the WARC Club Secretary to members in good standing.  Club Station keys must be returned at the conclusion of Club Station use.

  • Use of the Club Station during Non-Business hours

During non-business hours, the American Red Cross is protected by an alarm system.  As such, a passcode is required to access the building.  In accordance with the ARC/WARC operating agreement, issuance of passcodes to non-American Red Cross personnel is restricted to Club Officers.  Therefore, use of the Club Station during non-business hours requires the presence of a Club Officer.

WARC Operating Requirements:

  1. General Requirements
    1. Use of the radio equipment located in the Club Station requires knowledge of proper operational procedure and safety.
    2. Amateur radio operators at the Club Station will observe all RF and electrical safety procedures at all times.
    3. All amateur radio operations from the Club Station will abide by Part 97 of the FCC Rules and Regulations
  2. Control Operator Responsibilities
    1. In accordance with Part 97 of the FCC Rules and Regulations, §97.105 Control operator duties: (a) The control operator must ensure the immediate proper operation of the station, regardless of the type of control; and (b) A station may only be operated in the manner and to the extent permitted by the privileges authorized for the class of operator license held by the control operator.
    2. Licensed operators, using the Club Station and assuming the responsibility as control operator, must note their operation in the Club Station Logbook.
    3. Use of the Club call sign, W4DHN, is only authorized during Club sanctioned events. As such, each operator will use their call when operating from the Club Station during non-WARC sanctioned operations.
    4. As the control operator, you are limited to the operating privileges assigned to your call sign. If a higher privilege license is present, they may assume control operator responsibilities and elevate privileges to the Club Station, provided the change in control operator has been duly noted in the Club Station Log.
  3. Non-licensed Operators
    1. Members and visitors that are not amateur radio license holders may operate the station, provided a licensed operator is present and willing to accept the responsibilities as a control operator.
    2. Non licensed visitors may operate only under the immediate supervision of the on-site control operator. As such, they are entitled to the same operating privileges of the control operator’s assigned call.
    3. Under these circumstances, the duty to operate and control the station remains with the licensed control operator.

10 thoughts on “Our Club Station

  1. John Sterling Johnston

    To a club officer,

    I am a member of the club but I don’t use Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Two questions…One, how do I know when club meetings are taking place and when club events occur? Two, how do I schedule or attend orientation for meeting the requirements to operate club equipment?

    Thank you in advance,

    John Johnston
    KO4IWB, 73

    1. Charles Woodall

      John, apologies for the delayed response. The best way to get information from the club is to listen to the Tuesday 2M FM net. The net starts at 8:00 p.m. Central. Details on the repeater frequencies and such are on this club website.

      Another option for club members is to sign up for our Groups.io email. Go to groups.io and sign up for a free account if you don’t already have one. Then search for W4DHN in the groups and subscribe. Once you are verified as a club member, you will start receiving emails will all the club happenings.

      You can learn about the club station equipment at our upcoming Field Day, which will be at Northside Methodist Academy in Dothan on Saturday, June 24th. Field Day kicks off at 1:00 p.m. Central that day.

      Hope to see you there!

      Charles Woodall
      Wiregrass Amateur Radio Club, President

      1. John Beach SR

        what would be a good mobile radio and antenna for the truck while on the road? any suggestions

  2. John Beach SR

    currently studying for my tech license, should be hopefully taking the test in the next few weeks. currently have purchased a Baofeng BF-H6 10W High Power Two Way Radio Dual Band Handheld Walkie Talkie.
    still trying to figure it out as the manual isn’t that clear. I am interested in getting a membership with WARC. any and all help and info would be greatly appreciated. i want to get a mobile unit that is good and dependable as i drive OTR as a profession.
    My goals are to obtain the amateur- extra license (1 step at time)

    1. Charles Woodall

      John, thank you for your interest in our club. You will find an application form on the home page of this website. Simply click the “Join WARC” link at the top of the home page.

      As far as help with your equipment, your best option might be to bring it to our next New and Not So New Ham Workshop on Saturday, July 8th at 9:00 a.m. at the club station, located at the American Red Cross office on Montezuma Avenue in Dothan. The New and Not So New Ham Workshop is held each month on the first Saturday of the month, and is a great opportunity to meet other hams and get help on ham radio related equipment.

      Hope to see you at the next club meeting or workshop.

      Charles Woodall
      Wiregrass Amateur Radio Club, President

  3. John Beach SR

    Thank you for your quick response, Mr. Woodall. unfortunately, I will not be able to attend next meeting due to driving over the road and home time is scheduled June 28th thru the 6th of July. when will your meeting be in august? i can schedule my home time then. also, I would like to inquire about scheduling to take the tech test. I am normally out on the road driving 30 to 45 days @ a time. I can be reached by phone @ 334*350*2054. I look forward to hearing from you. or any of your members even the VEC’s

    1. Charles Woodall

      We have testing through our club every even numbered month, except December. Our next testing session is schedule for Saturday, June 24. The next one after that will be Saturday, August 26. You can find more information about testing at wiregrasshams.org.


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