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.
My son (Chris W4CBB) and I took our motorcycles to New Mexico and Colorado. It was an epic, father/son motorcycle adventure!
I took my KX2 with me in order to attempt a SOTA activation on Pikes Peak. Unfortunately, we had to abort due to weather. But, it’s just as well because my brain wasn’t working right in the thin atmosphere. I was sloppy and couldn’t think clearly. I’ve never been at that altitude before! Very interesting.
I worked Gary (W0MNA) but other signals were weak. The weak signals, coupled with my weak brain, and the sketchy weather made for a failed outing. We packed it up after Chris saw a lightning bolt.
What a fantastic vacation we had! I wish I had a better video for you but maybe this will be helpful to someone who anticipates activating Pikes Peak someday.
I purchased the 40m version of the QCX kit a while back. Seeing Hans Summers (QCX designer) at the recent Four Days in May event made me very excited about this little rig so I came home and built my kit. What an awesome little CW-only radio – for only $49!
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!
I’m on vacation for a couple of weeks. I brought my KX2 to the Caribbean and made this quick video to show you my contact with Easter Island. I also show you my setup – which includes an unusual antenna. I hope to make many more contacts, as time (and the wife) permits! – Cliff
For more info on the antenna… see Page 9 of this manual… http://www.elecraft.com/manual/E740054%20KXAT1%20man%20rev%20B.pdf
I heard a station calling CQ from Morocco and used my awesome little Elecraft KX1 to snag him… with only about 3 watts.
Sadly, the amazing little KX1 has been discontinued by Elecraft.
If McDonalds can keep bringing back the McRib, can’t we get Elecraft to bring back the KX1?!
Outdoors at a public park, I used a KX3 set to 1/10th of a watt… 100 milliwatts… to work a station in Finland. They were loud to me so I had a feeling I’d be able to get through. Now, this is a SuperStation in Finland with great antennas. My signal was ultra-weak but the QSO is in the logbook!
When you send Morse Code, it’s best to provide the proper amount of space between letters and words. This makes your code much easier to understand. In this video, I talk about the timing of Morse characters, proper spacing between letters and words, and options for handling the end of a thought/sentence.
Just because we’re putting out less power, it doesn’t always mean that our signals are weak. If propagation is good, even 1 watt can sound great. Check out these two examples… – Cliff
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!