Sunday, November 18, 2018

ARRL SS Phone 2018 at my QTH in North Texas

Guest OPS

K5PS Scott

Victor WB0TEV

With the extraordinary help of  Scott & Victor
We managed a very respectful entry in this years running of the ARRL SS Phone Contest from my modest shack and even more modest and still maturing antenna farm.
With only three OPS, we had a lot of Butt In the chair time, however we managed to have some fun as well !
With a tad over 4 hours left before the end of the contest tonight, were nudging at over 900 Q's
we managed a sweep first thing Sunday morning on Twenty meters when VO1YY answered my CQ SS Call - What a Thrill !

I will follow-up with another post of the results and try and add some pixs of my very modest atnenna farm


Monday, November 12, 2018

Rain, Rain and yes More Rain and a few other topics for the post...

Wow !

Have we had enough rain for the the last 30 days or what !
Hard to get anything done outside, it is so wet
Sure would be nice if we had a break and allowed the ground to get a little dry for a change
I guess it's better than a drought :)

Mean while on the health side of things........
Finally relief from my neck pain
Been to see the Nero Surgical guys again and got the second (other side of the Neck)
worked on and I have feeling great again !
It is so nice to now just have the occasional headache, versus the dehabilitating pain I was constantly having.

Go a bit more work done on the antenna Farm (Ham Radio)
even though it is so wet we need hip wanders (wel almost that bad)
I managed to get out on the tractor on the back 18 acres and found that the 80 meter Rhombic is down
Broken pulley allowed the fed point end to fall from the pole

Mean while here is the current antenna Inventory

6 el 20 m monobander
4 el 40m Four Square vertical array
80/160 meter Vertical
8 el wire Sturba Curtain Array (works good on 80 thru ten meters)
2 el Hex Beam for 10/15/20m
80 meter Full size Rhombic (out of commission for now)

Two low band Receive arrays: 
One is the 9 ele YCCC Low band Receive array 
Second is a 3el Hi-Z vertical Array

The 20m OWA M2 is still only at 26 feet above the ground,
which will probably work great for ARRL SS Next week-end
But sure looks way too close to the ground when you see it
Heck the boom is Sixty feet long, so it is barely a third as high as the boom is long !
Goal is to have it at 130 feet on the Tic Ring Rotor, eventually

The 40 m Four square is working great towards the North East
but else where it is only fair....
So I waded out in the water the other day and inspected it
Two of the feed points are broken, hogs chewed on them !!!
Yes we have wild Feral Hogs in these parts of Texas

I still need to get the 80m Four square built
of course priority is to get the 150 feet of Rohn 55g up

Meanwhile I bought an MFJ 1846 antenna (2 ele Hex beam or CobWeb 6 thru 20m)
got it assembled in the cold wx yesterday
plan on putting her up if the rain stops later today
for now she will goon a tilt over pole at about 30 feet
and will be fixed towards West Coast as the 20m monoband is currently fixed towards the East Coast
Long term plans are to have this 2el antenna stay below 30 feet but rotator added

I need to do some work on the 9el YCCC Low Band Receive array
lots of lightning last week and I think I lost several preamps at the base of the verticals
yupp more boards to build and replace !
This antenna system (YCCC Vert Array) requires a lot on maintenance but when she works she is worth it !

Decided I needed to stay close to home for several reasons and not trek to Louisiana for the anual
Multiop get together for ARRL SS Phone, I hope the team does great at W5WZ's QTH this year

Since I am home for ARRL SS Phone, I decided we need to see if a couple of the local guys want to come play....

So far I have two OPS coming
I am greatly looking forward to hoisting an ARRL team again
last time was in Louisiana way back in 2013

Never would have thought it had been that long, but I looked it up
on the website

I am looking forward to getting to know the guys that are coming over to play
Hope we are able to post a respectable score, Top ten would be nice
but mainly want the ops to have fun and look fwd to coming back again

That's it for now!
Still raining