SKCC 5123T----- FISTS 14979----- Flying Pigs 2331----- NAQCC 3610-----QRP ARCI 14176-----Polar Bear 257

Saturday, January 7, 2012

My Pet Rock Talks

Well my pet rock is a one watt Michigan Mighty Mite one transistor QRP transmitter. The rock refers to the crystal that controls the frequency. The three hour Pet Rock Event sponsored by ARCI QRP was an opportunity to put the MMM to work.

Being rock bound is a different way of operating if you are used to the usual rig with a Variable Frequency Oscillator (VFO). My Crystal is stamped 7.030 MHz but it tunes up closer to 7.029. So you can call CQ or answer a CQ that happens to be close by in frequency. No chasing contacts up and down the band.

Any one watt contact will make you feel lucky. So I was pleased to work Allan W4MQC in Bokeelea, FL. That is on Pine Island near FT. Myers FL.  Allen was running 5 watts with a FT-817.

The next contact was with my buddy Thomas WD0HDR in Dothan, AL. When I heard the call I copied W D 0 ok a zero call area and then the H gave it away. He did have an email tip that I was going to be on. I was weak there but good copy. Tom is running 5 watts with a MFJ 9040 with a modest long wire from his HOA neighborhood.

The last contact was Jim in W4QO Roswell GA. Jim was running a K3 to a loop. He said he also had a Rockmite on 7.040 working the Pet Rock event. It just turns out Roswell is on a direct line thru WD0HDR's location

You will see in the photos I was using a HB-1B for the receiver and using a manual T/R switch. My antenna was my 135 foot doublet. I did have a surprise as I checked the Reverse Beacon Network to see where I as being picked up by the CW skimmers. I was being picked all too well at 21.087. That is the third harmonic of 7.029. I guess that is why they have a few more parts in most transmitter designs.

It was a fun event!

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N4KGL to WD0HBR QSO  click Movie