In this video, I get a chance to talk a little philosophy while driving to a local park. I then set up my Mountain Topper and SOTABEAMS dipole and work 11 stations… 8 of which were 5,000+ miles away! This will show you that a tiny, battery-powered radio can produce excellent results and allow you to have a ton of fun.
Gear seen in this video:
MTR-5B HF radio: https://www.lnrprecision.com/store/MT…
3Ah lithium ion battery: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01…
Mini Speaker: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01…
Palm Mini Paddle – no longer available
Zoom H6 Audio Recorder: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/deta…
GoPro Hero7 Black camera: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc…
2″ Drive-On Mast Mount: https://tn07.com/mast-supports
Green 33′ fiberglass telescopic mast: https://tn07.com/telescoping-masts
In this video, I tell you why you should join the Straight Key Century Club. It’s a great place to have contacts with other Morse Code people who aren’t speed demons! This is a great group of guys who like to use Straight Keys and the speed is usually somewhere between 12 to 17 wpm. So, for anyone who’s just learned Morse Code, this is a great place to get your feet wet! Join the SKCC at http://www.skccgroup.com
The video also includes Bonus Footage that shows my office and gear used to shoot this video.
This weekend I worked some SSB QRP on the hill at Bobcat Ridge. I don’t do a lot of voice-mode QRP since it’s less efficient than CW or one of the Digital modes. Still, I did make several 2,000 mile contacts while running only 5 watts from my Elecraft KX2. The antenna was a SOTABEAMS dipole. All contacts were made on the 20m band.
What you DON’T see in this video are the many, many times I answered someone’s CQ only to have them not hear me at all. This is just how it is when working QRP voice-mode – especially in a contest when the station calling CQ has other stations overlapping their calling frequency. The QRM from other operators makes it harder to pick out a weak signal.
On Sunday, May 6th, 2018 I rode my bicycle to a construction site with a good location for working portable. I set up my SOTABEAMS dipole and used my YouKits HB1B Mk III to make some contacts. The New England QSO Party event was being held that weekend and I worked 6 stations in a fairly short time.
It seemed like the sidetone of my HB1B devolved into lots of clicks and very little tone after a while. Not sure why but it was annoying. A great day for ham radio!
The ARRL DX SSB contest was held this past weekend. Band conditions to Europe were No Bueno. I fired up my FlexRadio 6300 and made 4 quick QRP contacts to the Caribbean. Don’t forget that 5 watts are only about 2 S-Units quieter than 100 watts… so, as long as the receiving station has a reasonably low noise floor, you will be heard!
I took my KX2 this morning when I went out to ride my bicycle. I found a good place to put up my dipole where I could be in the shade. After working 2 Japanese stations, I used my phone to record video of me working a third station so you can share in the joy of portable QRP.
Why not take your radio with you when you go out for a walk, a hike, bike riding, etc. You never know what will happen!
I played around in the ARRL International DX Contest this weekend for a total of about 8 hours. During that time, I worked 49 countries!
I’m NOT a contester. I’m not really even all that great at CW but I do enjoy it. If I can do this, you can do this, too.
The contest exchange of information was:
DX Station: Call sign, Signal Report (always “599”) and Power Level
American Station: Call sign, Signal Report (always “599”) and State abbreviation.
In this video, I show you my station setup and then record my screen so you can see me working some DX stations via QRP.
Don’t miss the Bonus Track at the end of the video…