Archive for the ‘Field Day’ Tag

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:

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.


Amateur Radio This Week: #28   Leave a comment

I’m the mobile NM QSO Party Champion this year, so I’m just doing champion things, like posting this link:  NM QSO Party Results.   Go me!  (I’m not actually this big of a jerk, I just play one online).

I took a trip down to the Pacific Northwest, and have been spending time in Seattle.  I have been dealing with all sorts of RF problems (as mentioned before), so I have not been on the air.

Today, I took a trip to the Ham Radio Outlet in Portland, OR, and picked up a vertical ground radial kit for my vertical antenna at home.  I also picked up a thick grounding strap in hopes of providing a better grounding strap for the magnet mount on the van.  I ran the ground strap from the ring where the shield of the coax is connected to the magnet to a screw in the driver’s door.  So far, it appears all that has happened is that my antenna is now deaf.  I’ll have to look into this some more.

I used my ARRL Birthday coupon to buy a Field Day 2016 patch and a pin.  I think I paid $1 all said and done, so I am pleased.

I also finished out my NM QSO Party logbook entries- they are all logged in DX4Win.  I still have a handful of contacts on a digital recorder that happened post-NM QSO Party that need to be logged.

Thank you for reading my post.

Amateur Radio This Week: #26   Leave a comment

This week has bee quite busy for me on amateur radio. In spite of my out-of-date logs, I checked into the Albuquerque SCAT Net several times, including this morning.

I also participated in Field Day at a site that included folks from New Mexico Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, as well as the ARRL section manager.  Here I am, logging a few 20 meter QSOs.  I was only able to participate for a few hours, so I only logged around 50 QSOs.


Yesterday evening, I spent some time trying to set up a temporary station in my van.  I have a magnet mount on the roof, so I put my Kenwood TS-130S in the passenger seat and a 20 meter antenna in the mount.  I put an SWR meter in line and tried to tune up.  I accidentally touched the port for the field strength meter… RF burn.

Ouch.  Then, I tried to check the SWR again, this time without touching the port.  I was holding the mic, which has a big metal plate on the back.  Another RF burn.

I dropped the power, and I could get the antenna to tune, but only at low power. I wasn’t sure if this was a problem with the antenna, radio, or power.  I suspected the antenna mount, as it has been on the roof of the van for quite some time, and the coax may be crushed, as the van was in an accident that pins the door shut.  I put another magnet mount on the roof and, when I upped the power, another RF burn.

I know the antenna is good, as it was in use a few days ago on my Crown Vic.  I can also receive signals just fine.

I then put my Yaesu FT-857D.  It seems to tune, with no SWR message from the radio.  I, however, am not brave enough to grip the mic in a way that may yield another RF burn, so I will try to make a contact or two with it and see if I get a complaint about my signal.  I will also inspect the power cable; I have a direct (but fused on the positive side) connection to the battery, so I should at least have a DC ground.

Thank you for reading my post.

Field Day 2014   Leave a comment

I spent the afternoon and late evening with the High Desert Amateur Radio Club in Rio Rancho, participating in the ARRL Field Day event.    I made a handful of 20 meter SSB contacts, including Hawaii (PAC). 

Field Day brings back so many memories for me, of friends distant and gone.  Mike Knight had formed the New River Wireless Association in 2002 after a Morse Code class he taught wished to keep radio communication going among US.   I was a charter member as well.   We ran several stations on a mountain in Southwest Virginia, and had a great time.

I wore my New River Wireless Association polo shirt when I operated this year.   I am sorry I won’t hear Mike on the radio again.

I did make some new friends this year and am considering joining the club. 

Field Day is great, and if you haven’t operated in one, try it out next year!

Field Day 2013: 20 QSOs   Leave a comment

I put in a meager Field Day 2013 effort from Socorro, NM. I spent most of my time on 20 meters and worked 20 stations. The funny thing was that almost all of them were in (what I consider) difficult sections to work: KY, VT, SK, NLI, KS, and NE, just to name a few.

I swapped out for a 10 meter antenna, and while I heard several stations, I was not able to work any of them.

I put the 20 meter antenna on again, and listened, but the contest was over. It will be ready for the DX net tomorrow morning.

Field Day Final Report / 6-26-11 Daily Radio Report   Leave a comment

I managed to get 65 QSOs in 42 sections on this year’s ARRL Field Day.

A quick glance at the section map shows how many of the ‘hard-to-get’ sections I managed to get, including NLI, VT, NH, RI, ENY, SNJ, WV, HI, ME, EMA, WMA and CT.

In addition to the Field Day Event, I picked up a few counties as well:

From Sandoval County:
Jefferson, CO
Clear Creek, CO
Gilpin, CO
Perkins, NE
Keith, NE
Lincoln, NE

Band conditions were really quiet on Sunday. There were almost no Field Day stations at noon, even though the contest was scheduled to go for a few more hours. I left the radio on 14.336MHz and picked up counties while I did chores around the house.

Field Day: Day 1   Leave a comment

I managed to get 58 QSOs in 39 sections. In the last several hours, I picked up EMA, WMA, RI, and HI, all of which are pretty hard to get.

Posted June 26, 2011 by n3mra in Contesting

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