Friday, July 22, 2011

Wakulla Springs and Portable Ops

It is hard to beat the gators, manatees, and birds you will see on the boat tour at Wakulla Springs in NorthWest Florida. I made a trip with Grand Kids and Daughter. I worked in some contacts with my IC 703 and the Buddistick. The noise level was S zero. I had zero luck on CW. However as it often works out, you change change your luck going SSB. I worked VA2PW in Quebec and WD9FOX in central IL. So that is 2 of the 5 of the contacts I'll need to activate the state park under Parks On The Air POTA. I had several folks observe me on CW and come by for a chat. One guy said that is better than texting and I said yes and no monthly charges either. I also had a long chat with one of the park rangers. He was very impressed. Grands Kids loved it. I hope I can go back to complete the POTA activation.

Greg N4KGL

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Enjoyed the Magic Band

6 Meters Band That Is!

There was the CQ WW VHF Contest going this weekend. The band was open to go with it. This is the most I have ever done on 6 meters. I had QSOs with Costa Rica, Belize, Turks and Caicos Islands, Dominican Republic, the Bahamas, Cayman Islands, Cuba and five in Mexico. Lots of fun!

I used the IC-703 at 10 watts. The first go I used my 80 meter doublet which tuned up fine on 6. Then this morning I tried out a rotatable dipole off the vehicle in the driveway. I used the arms and whips that came with the Buddistick deluxe kit.

There was my friend Jason N4JTC in Parker on as well and he worked most of the same stations. Likewise I heard AJ4SQ nearby.

T Network Tuner

I came across a roller inductor and two large variable capacitors. No idea of what the values are. But certainly the makings of a tuner. So I cleaned them up and wired them up. The tuner seems to work. There are a jumpers on the caps to have the option of using half of each capacitor. I understand you need less capacitance for the higher bands.

The result is a little oversized for QRP portable. Also after some reading on the net, there is some discussion that a L network is preferable but this is my baseline experiment with the T network. I might employ this at my Dad's house where I hope to do some operating from his workshop.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

20 Meter Delta Loop Back Yard Portable

I always wanted to try a delta loop and I had my chance early on the 4th of July while visiting my Mother-In-Law in Conyers, GA. I got the idea from this link. I used a LDG 4 to 1 balun at the top and about 70 feet of wire. It tuned to resonance easily. The tip of the delta was about 20 feet and the bottom flat section was about 10 feet high. I setup with the 3 watt SST and worked ID, CT and OH. So I'll add this to the BYP Backyard Yard Portable playbook. Here are some pictures. The actual wires of the loop were pretty much invisible to the camera.