I recently returned from the Four Days In May QRP event in Dayton, OH. Here are some thoughts on the fun of meeting QRP rock stars, seeing the debut of the Elecraft KX2, and hanging out with like-minded QRP Nerds. I also share a couple of interesting QRP contacts.
Bottom Line: Plan to attend FDIM next year!
QRP ARCI: http://http://www.qrparci.org/
Elecraft KX2: http://www.elecraft.com
Steve WG0AT: https://www.youtube.com/user/goathiker
This past weekend, I took the Mountain Topper radios (3B and 5B) to Bobcat Ridge and worked a bunch of stations. In this video, I show my antenna setup and work 5 or 6 stations. At the end of the video, I show all of the stations I worked.
Not bad for 3 watts and a wire antenna. I was only transmitting for about 90 minutes, total. The various contests running this weekend made it super-easy to work QRP!
In this video, I show you the portable hexbeam antenna I recently built. I discuss all of the components that are required to build one.
This is a great antenna that is a bit of a PITA to deploy… it has more parts and requires more setup time than a typical wire antenna. But, for special occasions, when you want a nice directional antenna to deploy in the field, this is what you need.
LNR Precision (www.LNRPrecision.com) recently released the first production batch of their new Mountain Topper 5-Band QRP radio.
The MTR-5B is THE new pocket-sized QRP radio to have. Highly Recommended!
As soon as I took it out of the box and hooked it up, my first contact was CN8KD in Morocco on 30m. I take that as as good omen for all of the fun I will have with this amazing little rig.
In this video, I show you the improvements over the (still awesome) MTR-3B radio. I then hook it up to an antenna and take it for a spin, letting you see the new four-line LCD display and some of the many cool features.
In this video, I review the QRPGuys.com End-Fed Half-Wave Mini Tuner. This is a $25 kit that will tame the high impedance of an End-Fed antenna. With this, you can deploy a half-wavelength of wire without feeding it in the middle (like you would for a traditional dipole).
Easy to build. Works great. A nice little kit for your building pleasure!
In this video, I explain how band-pass filters can reduce or eliminate QRM (interference).
Using a spectrum analyzer, I demonstrate a band-pass filter that I built based upon an article I found in the September 1988 edition of QST magazine. The article can be read here:
I went to Bonaire for two weeks, scuba diving and snorkeling. I wanted to take some radio gear.
And so I did… about 50 pounds worth!
In this video, I share with you the gear I chose to take and I reveal some important lessons I learned…
I got the last Mountain Topper QRP radio of 2015 from LNR Precision (according to Ryan).
I’ve been having a ball with this gem for the past 10 days. In this video, I tell you about the radio and then show you how to use nearly every feature. It’s a long video that I made for those who may be interested in this jewel-like little rig… which should be EVERYONE!
I went on a road trip with my friends Tim Kreth (AD4CJ) and Doug Miller (W4DML) last weekend to work portable from a beautiful scenic overlook. We drove about 70 miles, full of anticipation, only to find that the scenic overlook had been closed due to a hunting event!
We needed to make lemonade out of lemons.
Running out of time, we decided to head toward home and stop along the interstate at the first exit that looked promising. We found a field that was on an elevated exit of the interstate. It was getting late in the afternoon and we only had a short time to set up, make some contacts, tear down, and begin the drive back home.
I had planned to shoot some video footage for the blog but I only worked a few stations before having to tear down. I spent a lot of time trying to scare up some DX on 15m with no success. I did work Cuba on 15m and a couple of other stations on 20m. Tim concentrated on working 20m and had a lot of fun contacting stations participating in the Skywarn Appreciation Day event. Doug used the time to deploy and trim up a homebrew fan dipole that he’d built.
You can see my setup in the photo, below. You’ll see Tim’s setup in the distance.
Is there any better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than going somewhere with friends to play ham radio?
Taking advantage of the unseasonably warm weather here in Nashville (67 degrees!) I drove up to Bobcat Ridge and worked a few stations on 15 meters with 5 watts from my trusty Elecraft KX3.
Why don’t we make this a Black Friday tradition?!