The OFFICIAL 2012 W6D Transcontinental DXpedition Thread

Discussion in 'Discussions, Opinions & Editorials' started by WA6MHZ, May 6, 2012.

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  1. WA6MHZ

    WA6MHZ Premium Subscriber

    I guess it is about time to start it. We are at ONE WEEK and counting til the Launch. It is almost 7AM Sunday the 6th and projected Launch is this time next Sunday the 13th. The date was pushed back one day to give me one last WEEKEND day to try and work the 7O6T DXpedition. While I am banging my head on the desk DESPERATELY trying to make one @#@#@@#@$@#@#@#@ QSO, the rest of the country already has them in the log on all bands and all modes!!! Propogation just absolutely SUCKS! And it is NOT from lack of trying. I have been by the radio every last second that I don't have to be at work, or during sleeping hours when there is no chance anyway. Other people in our DX Club who have WARC band beams have squeaked through. SO that is interfering with the LAUNCH.

    I can't move the launch back past Sunday as we are scheduled to get into Dayton Tuesday evening at the Latest. And I have to do all the driving. We can't let the Good Nun try and drive the freeway as she has NO IDEA where she is going. The GPS GARMIN does not speak CHINESE to her. If I went to sleep, we might be headed down the wrong freeway and HUNDREDS of miles off course by the time I woke up. Navigation is IMPERATIVE, even though we just stay on I-40 all the way to St. Louis. It is really tricky to get on the right freeway once you cross the MISSISSIPPI, as I found out 2 years ago. I wound up on the MEAN STREETS of East St Louis after taking a wrong turn. Fortunately, it was 3AM and pouring rain so I wasn't Carjacked!

    The preparations have begun and the Launch Checklist initialized. Items mandatory for trip are being staged in areas. The Yaesu FT-817 kit is already in the trunk. That will be used at our ARRL Kit Building booth to test out the new Sound Card interface kit we are debuting. Same for the Laptop and the tow Baofeng HT kits. I have each in sturdy metal boxes with chargers and all accessories. Also weighing down the trunk is my portable 40AH Gell Cell bag and even a 12V24A Switching Power supply to recharge the gel cell or run the 817.

    The Bank has been raided for the neccessary FUNDS for swapmeet Squandering. Since the trunk is already almost FULL, we will use only ONE bag for clothes. If we run out of clean clothes, she can wash them in the Motel SINK! Or, maybe they have a Laundrette in Dayton somewhere.

    I saw a radio that should have been picked up to give away at the Talk. It was a very beat up Hallicrafters Sky Champion. Circa early 40s. But the Rat B*******D wanted $40 and I wanted to pay $20 for it. He went down to $30, but it was STILL too pricey for the condx it was in. Plenty of rust and really beat up. No, too wasted to score. I already have one in the Museum, but I wanted something like that to give away. Maybe I will see something in the Dayton Flea Market Friday or Saturday morning. I didn't have the time to restore it anyway ALL BECAUSE of the $#$#@#@# 7O6T!

    Now, the Operation ENDS on May 15th at 2100Z. That is Tuesday. Maybe one of the good QRZeders along the way will allow me to stop by their house for a few minutes and use THEIR station to work them from the Midwest, where they are 59++ all the time. Anyone want to help a DESPERATE DXer who needs this for one of the LAST 5 countries in the world? We can even make Detours if needed, but not too far off course as it would add HUNDREDS of dollars to the gasoline bill, which already is projected at close to $1000 bucks! Yes, we COULD have flown ROUNDTRIP 5 times to Dayton and back for that!

    So, it is 7AM and time to get ready for Church. I talked to the Priest and he is going to officially BLESS the Town Car with Holy Water to make it SAFE for the 4400 mile ride. We Especially need it safer if the GOOD NUN is going to drive it (even for a few BLOCKS!). At this time, all systems are GO except for the 7O6T problem!

    More to follow.....
     
  2. KC7YRA

    KC7YRA Ham Member

    Good luck Pat. I will be following you online and will give you a contact while on the road.

    I then look forward to meeting you. We fly out of Denver on Thursday AM so we will be there for hootervention.

    As for a station, you can always come up to Wyoming. We'll get you in the log.

    Brad
     
  3. WA4OTD

    WA4OTD XML Subscriber

    You could get to Dayton early and set up a dipole high in the air and try him from Dayton. Still legit for DXCC and much easier from Dayton than San Diego! Good luck on the trick, always great to read the trip reports!
     
  4. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Ham Member

    Looking forward to catching you on the radio...
     
  5. K7MH

    K7MH Ham Member

    And keeping track of you on APRS!
     
  6. W5WPL

    W5WPL Subscriber

    Pat,
    Don't forget to stop in Austin and pick up my main squeeze Sandra Bullock then swing by Pearland to get me.
    Don't worry if she wants to put up a fight. She likes to play that way. She even played a practical joke on me by getting a restraining order.
    So that means I can't pick her up at her house. We'll all have a good time for sure.
    Looking forward to seeing yall.
    Seeyalaterbye :D !!!

    Billy Bob Jumpback
    aka W5WPL

    PS If I'm not here, you'll need to drive to East Texas to a town called Rusk to pick me up.
    Come at night and flash your lights near the main entrance.
     
  7. K0RGR

    K0RGR Premium Subscriber

    I'll be hitting the road a bit later that same week. I need to meet my family in Orlando on the 19th. I don't know why I can't arrange these trips so I am in Orlando for Hamcation - we narrowly missed it last year. We seem to be stuck in a pattern that puts us on vacation during Dayton week every year. This is the LAST year that we have to do it on the college student's schedule, and I suppose that also means the last year we could do it as a family, so I better be happy about it. I'm not planning to take a rig to the Bahamas, but I may change my mind. I expect to be too busy to even think about radio. I'll have thousands of miles of windshield view in which to operate mobile.

    I was planning on leaving Wednesday evening, but I think I'm cutting it too close that way. I don't dare keep them waiting at the airport, and I'm not prone to driving all night anymore, either.
     
  8. KT7DAD

    KT7DAD Ham Member

    How come you have not set up the W6D callsign page?
     
  9. WA6MHZ

    WA6MHZ Premium Subscriber

    How do I do that?
     
  10. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Ham Member

    You have to talk to one of the database admins.
    They can set it up, as I remember they have provisions for special event stations.
     
  11. AC0FP

    AC0FP Ham Member

    I hate to dispute your distorted view of the Midwest but I haven't even heard 7O6T here. I did talk to a local friend who has, he used "hamcap" to find the best time for Yemen on 20 meters. Then he used his remote station in the Colorado mountains!

    Try from Crest for an extra day, the only loss is maybe mooching a few free drinks at one of the DX hospitably suites.
     
  12. W4HAY

    W4HAY Subscriber

    Yeah, but does that make safe for the other motorists? Such as from running off the road while gawking at all the antennas? Or dodging ramen noodle containers?
     
  13. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Ham Member

    It's not Pat's fault if some other drivers don't have the self discipline to keep their attention focused on their driving.....

    :)
     
  14. WA6MHZ

    WA6MHZ Premium Subscriber

    We have another SETBACK, this time a severe FINANCIAL one. The Town Car's AIR CONDX is KAPUT!
    And, from what I read on the WX page, NM, TX & OK is in the 90s these days! So I gotta get that fixed FAST! Especially with my good wife in the car. There is a LEAK somewhere that the FREON (or whatever it is called these days since the RBs outlawed Freon)escapes. Maybe that is how we get the OZONE HOLE! ALL that Freon leaking out from P.O.S. cars like mine. The BlackWidderMobile has been SHOT for 10-15 years! In fact, that is the MAIN reason I got a new one: To get AIR again, as using a FAN and driving with the Windows down SUCKS!

    Unfortunately, I now have to UNLOAD all the highly valuable cargo already loaded for the trip so I can take it to the AC place. Leave it in there and the RBs in the repair shop would RIP IT ALL OFF!
    I don't have time to remove all the radios and antennas, so I just have to HOPE they will still be there when I go back to get the car. The rule is that if a car is left UNLOCKED for just a SECOND, some rotten RB will ROB IT!!!!

    The AC SHOP opens at 8AM, so I gotta go over there and WALK BACK! That is well over a MILE, which is an INCREDIBLE HIKE for me. Maybe I can Beg a co-worker to come and get me. Walking from there to here, I have to go through a GAUNTLET of TRAMPS who will try and ROLL me for the few dollars of cash I carry. So that is to worry; hopefully the workers here will SAVE MY LIFE!

    So, while I am at work here today, UNDOUBTEDLY the 7O will be 20 over 9 into here and calling CQ CALIFORNIA; and then the band will promptly CLOSE as soon as I get home from work!
     
  15. K9ASE

    K9ASE Ham Member

    what year is your Town car? if it's newer than 1994 it takes R-134a and they sell it at autoparts stores you could probably top it off yourself if it worked last year
     
  16. N6OIL

    N6OIL XML Subscriber

    Hey W5WPL,
    Years back when she was filming The Net meet her at the Rose in SF and we slammed back a few longnecks, she is a great person! Sorry I don't have her number any longer.
     
  17. WA6MHZ

    WA6MHZ Premium Subscriber

    The Town Car is in the shop. They confirmed all the coolant had leaked out, so there is a HOLE somewhere. WHERE the hole is depends on how EXPENSIVE it can get. If the hole is in the radiator or compressor, it could cost THOUSANDS!!!! I am PRAYING this is an honest shop and they won't GOUGE me as I really don't need a MASSIVE EXPENSE right now before Dayton. But it will be good to get it FIXED, as it will be a LONG HOT SUMMER, probably towards Late OCTOBER before it cools down, and I need a ICE COLD Car! Hopefully they can get it done TODAY as I have no way to get home from work otherwise. ONCE AGAIN, people wonder why I have to have TWO cars. just for instances like this, where I NEED the 2nd Town Car to get to work and back while the first one is in the shop. They have worked on it about an hour now, so they should be just about ready to call me up and SOCK IT TO ME!!! BOHICA TIME!!!!
     
  18. K2XT

    K2XT Subscriber

    It all comes back to me now...... the reason I stopped buying American cars in 1980. Had a mild relapse in 1993 when I thought Ford had gotten its act together. Two years later, after numerous times sitting alongside the road with an engine that wouldn't start I went back to JA and DL cars. Not as big, heavy, and comfortable, but everything works after 12 years and 230k miles. Then I found out Ford knew for a long time they had a problem with some simple transistor circuit but if they admitted it they would have to recall a bunch of cars. Once in awhile I get a weak moment when I consider going back, then I remember the day the Ford dealer promised me he had fixed my problem. He replaced the fuel pump, etc. Five minutes after leaving the shop I was sitting with a dead engine on the Garden State Parkway with traffic zooming past me at 70 mph. Not fun. Never forgot it.
     
  19. KC7YRA

    KC7YRA Ham Member

    Toyota Tundra. I own 2 of them. I was a Ford guy forever until I drove a Tundra. Spend a day in one, towing, interstate, offroad. You'll wonder why you didn't get one sooner.

    Brad
     
  20. KB3PXR

    KB3PXR Ham Member

    Pat:

    You could always take the wife's Toyota, it will make the trip less expensive too. When you get back, you can buy your own Toyota so it will last longer. I wonder what it is with Town Cars and Air Conditioning.
     
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