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

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Orlando Hamcation 2013

Marv KK4DKT and I made another Orlando Hamcation trip. We arrived on Friday for a few hours at the hamfest. Friday night Marv visited his daughter who is going to school in Orlando. I did some ops from our third story room at red roof. I made a few contacts on 30 meters using the KX3 and the Alexloop. Any contact from indoors is a joy. Saturday we put in our due at the hamfest. The crowd was large. I met Kelly K4UPG and friends for lunch. See more on Kelly's Blog. My big buy was a Hexagonal Beam from Roger KA4RR. It was a pretty good deal. I don't have any type of beam. I see this as a field day antenna and eventually installed at the house. They are clever antennas but large. So this will be a new challenge supporting it in the field.

It was a pleasure to attend the QRP forum in the afternoon setup by Jim K4AHO. The excellent presentation was by Jim W4QO on DX and QRP. The gist is that QRP makes ham radio more interesting and challenging. I was invited to give a demo of the KX3 and the Alexloop after the forum. The weather was perfect. I am rather proud that I can pack the KX3 and the Alexloop into a backpack which also includes a tripod. The Alexloop gained the most attention. My claim is it is the most convenient portable antenna to setup. It is so small and self contained compared to a dipole or just about any wire antenna. So I chose 20 meters around 14.060. My first call was to N8ZYA. Darn! he did not hear me. The second call was to KO1U Mark. I got him and he even gave me a 599. I always enjoy meeting QRP folks at the hamfests and Orlando came through. Thanks Jim and Kelly.

Marv bought a slinky antenna. He tested it out in the hotel parking lot late in the afternoon and into the evening. Marv has his FT 897 and accessories in his Ham Box 1000. See the pictures. Marv snagged his first New Hampshire QSO. He had been trying for NH ever since he got his license. He was born there. We made it back safely Sunday and made a few 146.52 contacts on the way. So all good for another Hamcation. It was enjoyable. There was quite a contingent of Panama City folks here having fun.

Alexloop and KX3 in hotel room

Roger NA4RR Hex Beams. Roger is very helpful to us hex beam neophytes.

Alexloop and KX3 in backpack. Also includes tripod for the loop and 10 AH LiFe battery.

KX3 and Alexloop demo

Marv's Slinky Antenna

Marv's awesome Ham Box 1000