Archive for the ‘Contesting’ Category

These Weeks in Amateur Radio: 2017.45, 2017.46   Leave a comment

The last few weeks have been quite busy.  Two weeks ago (2017.45), I played in the SSB Sprint contest, making 10 contacts on 40 meters.  I haven’t submitted my logs yet, but it is on the list for this week.   I also checked into the Albuquerque SCAT Net a few times.

Last week (2017.46), I competed in the ARRL SSB Sweepstakes contest.  I made 107 QSOs split among 40 meters and 20 meters.   100 QSOs is the minimum to get the participation pin, so I earned that this year.  It is the first year in several years, as I have did group events in 2016 and 2015 instead.

I also checked into the Albuquerque SCAT Net quite a few times, as well as the Caravan Club Net.  I set up my Alinco DR-605 at home, though it still cycles the power every time I transmit at high power.  With low power, I seem to be able to make the contact.  Also, on low power, I am able to hit the Socorro repeater, which means that I probably won’t ever need to go to high power.

I have quite a bit of logging work to do to submit my contest logs, but I’ll hopefully be able to tell you that they are submitted by next week’s post.

Thank you for reading my (late) post.

 

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Amateur Radio This Week: 2017.34   Leave a comment

This week was relatively busy for me in the world of amateur radio.

I started out the week strong by checking into the Albuquerque SCAT Net a few times, once from each vehicle.

On Saturday evening, I worked 12 stations on 20 meters during the North American QSO Party contest.  I have not yet submitted my log, but perhaps I will do that this week.

I also received a QSL envelope from the DX Bureau.  It looks like there are quite a few Japanese and Brazilian stations in there, but I haven’t checked my logs yet.

Also, the highlight of this week was traveling to the solar eclipse.  I went to rural Wyoming and saw the total eclipse, as we were right on the 100%, 2:28 duration line.  I tried making 6 meter contacts during the eclipse, giving out DN72, but nobody responded.

The traffic leaving the eclipse was incredible.  There were cars everywhere.  I hopped on the Wheatland, WY, 2 meter repeater (146.880 MHz) and listened in on the informal net.  Everyone was reporting their position and whether there was traffic (there always was).  I jumped in and gave a few reports, too.

I had an eyeball QSO with one of the operators, though he didn’t see me.  He described his family and where he was traveling on the radio.  Later, at a rest stop, my girlfriend waited in line behind his wife, who was describing their travel.  Sure enough, a few minutes later, both of them drove by us in the parking lot, with a magnet mount and an HT.

Overall, it was a good week, and I have some logging to finish up.

Thank you for reading my post.

 

Amateur Radio This Week: 2017.26   Leave a comment

This has been a busy week for amateur radio. I finally updated my logbook from our grand adventure to the east coast. I haven’t totaled up the number of contacts or new counties yet, but just know that it was a lot. I have updated my counties graphic.

I have operated from enough counties that I have given out the last county in the state for one operator or another 25 times. In fact, MARAC sent me this nifty plaque commemorating the occasion:
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This weekend was also ARRL’s Field Day. I participated with several other ham radio operators from the Datil Wells Campground, using the call NM5FD. I added 160 SSB QSOs on 20 meters during my shift. I had quite a pileup going, and had a great time working them all. Here is a view of the sky through the antenna:

Thank you for reading my post.

This Week in Amateur Radio: 2017.25   Leave a comment

I have been on the road for the last two weeks, and I had some time to play on the radio.  I am still catching up on logging my contacts.

Two weekends ago, I ran some counties on the 20 meter SSB county hunters net, which has mostly disappeared.  I ran three in PA, two in WV, and two in OH.  On that Sunday, I drove to VA, and played in the VHF contest as a rover, and I made six meter and two meter contacts along the way.

I also drove to the Delmarva Peninsula, and operated from several new counties in MD and VA.

Last weekend, we drove from WV to AR, and I made contacts in KY, TN, MO, and AR.  I haven’t even aeverdded up how many new counties I operated from.

I will post new graphics on this website, soon.

Thank you for reading my post.

This Week in Amateur Radio: 2017.23   1 comment

I borrowed the NMT Tech Amateur Radio Association (TARA) Yaesu FT-857D to compare against my own.  While mine has S9 +20dB noise on all bands, all of the time, theirs hovers between S3-S7.  I am currently borrowing their rig for this particular road trip.

With TARA’s radio, I was able to make a few contacts this weekend, in both a shipboard contest and the Alabama QSO Party, though I have not yet updated my logs.

I spoke with Yaesu customer service and they said to send mine in for a repair, which I will do as soon as I have time to go to a post office.

I’m currently on the road to the east coast, but one of these mornings, I will have some extra time and can send it off.

Thank you for reading my post.

This Week in Amateur Radio: 2017.16   Leave a comment

I finally updated my logbook.  I had 40 voice recordings that I needed to transcribe, and that is finally complete.

This evening, I began my NM QSO Party paperwork.  As I mentioned last week, this year’s QSO Party was a disappointment for me, and I have procrastinated even filing the paperwork.

Yesterday was the last section of the Amateur Radio Licensure course.  Nobody showed up, so I think they thought the course was over.  All I had planned was a review, so perhaps they are all ready to go.

I checked into the Albuquerque SCAT Net a few times as well as checked into some 40 meter net early one morning.

I will order a 20 meter Hamstick and update my DX4Win logs, as well as submit my QSO Party paperwork by next week.

Thank you for reading my post.

 

This Week in Amateur Radio: 2017.15   2 comments

This week has been unfortunately quiet on the radio for me.  I checked into the Albuqeurque SCAT Net once or twice on the UHF side.

The big disappointment was the NM QSO Party.  I had big plans to drive all over New Mexico and give out counties.  Instead, I never left Sandoval County.  I started out on 20 meters and did not hear a peep.  I suspected my antenna (there is a problem with the Hamstick I was using).  I switched to 40 meters and made a few contacts.  In almost two hours, I only made seven contacts, several of which were other NM stations that I was working on groundwave (Sandoval and Bernalillo Counties).  I did hear one of my contesting friends and he told me that 20 was totally dead in CA as well.  I guess conditions were just bad. I would call CQ for 15 minutes straight and get one response.

With so few contacts, and needing 15 per county for them to count, and finding out that my hours at work will be cut soon, I opted to not burn the gas and travel for the less-than-lucrative day.  I am sorry for anyone that was counting on me for those counties, but I simply wasn’t hearing many stations at all.

On Monday, my amateur radio license class finsihed constructing a 40 meter CW transceiver.  We were able to hear static, but weren’t able to hear any signals on 7.023 MHz.  I will set up a better test next week.

Thank you for reading my post.