Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by VK4HAT, Aug 11, 2018.
Looks lovely. Thumb up!
Bumping the RBN a touch..
The map feature is a new thing to me. I like the snr numbers, thank you sun spots!
Worked South Sudan and Mongolia last night!
Working on another radio I went through a HW-32 and everything is good. All tubes good
so I went through alignment and all is good. 100 watts out nice receive.
Finished up a HW-100 I bought as a parts radio. It needed a good amount of work but works great now.
I had to replace both relays, many missing small coax wires, a transformer, a few coils on the driver board
as well. I replaced the front panel with a NOS one and installed a Jackson drive and Swan knobs
and a new dial.
A buddy and I did a combination SOTA/VHF-Contest overnight backpacking trip. We started out with W4V/SH-014, where I started my activation on 20m SSB using my KX2 and an MFJ-1820t whip. I was hoping to knock out 4 or 5 contacts quickly so we could get on the road to the trailhead and our next summit. I managed a DX contact into France on my first CQ, but then struggled to get anything for a while after that. My buddy got his 4 using a VHF HT in 15 minutes, indicating I chose my weapon poorly.
I chased a few POTA stations, then switched to my HT to get a couple more contacts. Total elapsed time was 1hr. Summit in the bag, we headed down the mountain to our vehicle and on to the next stop.
This one, W4V/HB-006, involved us backpacking to the summit, setting up camp (hammocks in the tree-line), and hanging a number of antennas from the trees. Since we were also working the VHF contest, this was all VHF gear. I used two HTs, a VX-7 for 6mFM and 2mFM, and a TH-D74 for 2mFM, 1.25mFM, and 70cmFM. I had the summit activated in short order and spent the rest of the time chasing contacts for the contest. This was a slow contest, corroborated by other contesters. One mentioned many were on FT8.
Dinner that night was steaks over the fire, "steakhouse" beans, tortillas, and hot peppers from my garden. While we were there, a group of students from Eastern Mennonite University arrived and set up their own camp on the open summit. They were quiet, polite, and interested in what we were doing.
We retired at 10pm and I woke up at dawn the next day, fixed some coffee and enjoyed the sunrise from the fire tower. We made a few more contacts, broke camp, and hiked down to the truck. I was home by 1pm.
Logging a 20m contact on W4v/SH-014 (including this to show the how I was using the KX2):
Sunrise from the fire tower on W4V/HB-006:
Let me remind that lately I have been living in a small apartment and to work with a soldering iron I had to find a free table either in the kitchen or at the children’s place, since my workplace is a laptop on my stomach when I’m lying on the couch and I don’t need a separate table. But when I put things in order on the balcony, the piece of chipboard turned out to be a good table in the very corner.
Speaking of which, I replaced the finals on my Hardrock 50 amp the other day and I'm getting full power out of it again. I had an initial scare when it seemed to be heating up faster than before but nothing that reapplying thermal compound couldn't fix.
I prepared a data cable for FT-817 and tried the digimodes. ALC is weird, I measure 340 mV input from the TNC (PC soundcard via interface unit) but the ALC signal indicator is not showing any bars. I am afraid I have a weak modulation.
Anyway, I could get 4 FT8 QSOs into my log and finally could find a PSK31 station as well, so tried a contact. After some struggle we managed... still not sure if it was the propagation, my QRP (5W) or the modulation (ALC...). It is SX200AQJ from Greece, not a big distance.
CQ World Wide RTTY is coming in 2 weeks and I plan to participate in the QRP category with this setup - but further adjustments may be needed.
Thank you for the reminder, I haven't done this contest since 2014 (when I was part of the NR5M team). I don't have much of an antenna for DX contests, but thinking of a 40 meter LP Classic entry might be fun. Won't win any wallpaper but may work some friends (old and new). Glad they moved Texas QSO Party to not interfere with this one anymore.