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

Sunday, February 21, 2016

RaDAR from Suzy's Point Of View

I now have a Go Pro Session Camera. One thing leads to another and Suzy has her own Go Pro mount. I chose the trails at Conservation Park to let Suzy make some video from her point of view. I will let the video will speak for itself.

Suzy is just in her element on the trail. She loves to meet and greet the other people and dogs out there. She also is quite an athlete for a Basset. She can go for any distance I might do for RaDAR. So I have quite the RaDAR Buddy. RaDAR is Rapid Deployment Amateur Radio.

I enjoy being chased by my ham buddies in Near Vertical Incident Skywave NVIS  Range. So I meet up with them of 40 meters. This time Bob WB4BLX was within ground wave distance. Likewise for Steve N4VSP. Tom WD0HBR was coming in great from Dothan, Alabama. That would be NVIS. Another, Bob W5RE, was at NP18 Everglades National Park for National Parks On The Air. I was his first contact for his activation there.

I told a passer-by that I was doing amateur radio. He said "I know I am VA3ECO Chris from Ontario." Chris has his own outdoor adventures. He has some excellent model airplane videos. Here is one.

Chris also has a remote station back in Ontario. I later worked him on 17 meters from his remote and also local on ground wave.

I doubled back to the trail head and met John W8JER and Micky KE8ASK. I got their update on Hamcation in Orlando. John found a Kenwood he was looking for and Micky hooked up with Gordon West and now is a certified instructor for teaching ham classes.

It all made for an enjoyable day. Suzy conked out early for the evening after all the activity she had.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

N4KGL RaDAR Round Up for February 2016

This Saturday was the February RaDAR Round Up. I had in mind to work South African stations doing the SARL Field Day. I thought Eddie ZS6BNE might be participating but he was not available. So I chose to start off on 10 and 15 meters. For long distance DX I wanted to take advantage of the salt water effect for vertically polarized antennas. I chose Jetty Park in St Joe Florida where I could get some saltwater along the azimuth to South Africa. I setup my N6BT Bravo 7K on the sea wall at the park.

The South African part did not work out. But it did turn out that 10 and 15 meters were open. On 10 CW I worked YV5SKA in Venezuela, WP3RE, KP4IT in Puerto Rico. On 10 SSB I worked KP3ZE and P40MM in Aruba. I may have been getting help from the salt water on those. On 15 CW I worked SP6JOE in Poland, KB1WOD in Vermont, K5BZH in Texas, WA2CHV in New York, They were doing SKCC. On 15 SSB I worked PI4I and PI4GAC. I am not sure about those calls. Last on 15 SSB was IK2TCV in Italy.

I took an hour off to walk Suzy and the gear over to George Core Park. This park is the location of the Cape San Blas Lighthouse. I used a tree there to support the Chameleon Tactical Dipole Lite. I got on 40 meters CW and worked Craig NM4T in Huntsville, Bob WB4BLX in Panama City and Tom WD0HBR in Dothan. On 40 SSB I  worked Bob and Tom again and then caught KF4ECG North of Birmingham, Alabama. It did get pretty chilly there as the North winds kicked up.

I returned to Jetty Park but this time I used the my cart as a support for a Chameleon Hybrid/Whip as a vertical near the sea wall. I skipped around the bands and worked KD8DEU in Michigan on 17 CW, KP3ZE again on 15 SSB, K6M in California on 10 SSB and K9DAC in Ohio on 20 meters CW.

So I worked no South Africans and no deployed RaDAR Ops but I had lots of good contacts. This was my first attempt at using a Go Pro camera to capture what is goin on. I put a YouTube video together. It has a shot of Suzy leading the way on the trip between the parks. Yes she is well suited for RaDAR.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

FYBO 2016 in Sunny Florida

Freeze Your Butt Off Not! It was a beautiful day in Northwest Florida for FYBO, The temps went from 39 to 55 degrees. Low winds and plenty of sunshine was in my favor. The FYBO event  is sponsored by the Arizona Scorpions QRP Club. I got setup about 9 AM and I had the last contact about 1:30 PM.

Chameleon Windom 40 OCF

I had fifteen contacts running five watts with the the KX3. The power was strictly solar. I used a solar panel to charge my supercapacitor bank via a solar controller.  The antenna was a Windom 40 from Chameleon Antennas. I got it up about 30 feet.


Two Bioenno 28 watt panels in parallel.

The 58 Farad Supercapacitor bank
The breakdown was 40 CW (4), 40 SSB (6), 20 CW (3), 20 SSB (2). I had help from several locals including W5RE, WB4BLX K4GXV, N1HQ, N4URU and KK4DWE.  The only FYOB station I heard was WA5BDU in Arkansas. The location was pretty noisy and the bands were not too good for QRP.

W8JERs mag loop

The capacitor for higher power

Luna, Ron and John
I had plenty of eyeball QSOs including Micky KE8ASK and John W8JER. John brought a couple of homemade magnetic loops including one that can handle 100 watts.

Suzy getting some Sun
Suzy demonstrated how to relax and enjoy the sun!