Archive for July, 2010

Its Saturday morning

July 17, 2010

And its gonna be another scorcher with the threat of “Sound ana Light”  as well…  I tried the shack idea and with no central air…  I lasted about 15 minutes before I started to melt…

The obivious answer to me was take it outside….

In the above picture you can see the newly installed Gazebo with at the table one of my booster packs powering my FT897.  I just disconnected the W3EDP at the balun and ran a 25 foot lenght of RG8X from the 4:1 Balun to the 897…  No Tuner needed…

In the above picture you see a close up of the operating position… Radio, Battery Pack  and coffee….  In the afternoon the coffee could get swapped out for an 807…

Toby seems more interested in the BBQ but don’t touch HIS radio…

And Saber knows that sooner or later I’ll drop something when I flip it so he is first in line…

Anyway I came inside to refill the coffee cup and share this with you.  Check the twitter feed on the top right of the screen to see what frequency the pets and I will be on.  as long as the WX stays hot and dry I’ll be outside…

73bob

For the next few days if “Murhpy” stays away…

July 14, 2010

I thought I might as well add the disclaimer right at the beginning and get it out of the way.  It seems that now a days whenever I make plans right after I announce them….  something hits the fan to change everything…

NOT IMPRESSED AT ALL

Anyway here is the updated plans for the next few days and then lets get a “Pool” going on how much will actually happen…

I need to make it to the Ottawa Valley QRP Society meeting this evening.  It runs from 5pm to 7pm at a very friendly “Watering hole” in the west end of Ottawa.  Its getting close to Maplecon and I would like to see what everyone plans are for that in person rather than emails…

That takes care of Wednesday,  on Thursday I need to catch with two old friends and fortunately both visits involve coffee….  I have a 102 inch stainless steel whip antenna sitting here in the basement that is not going to get used.  I was thinking of using with my FT857 with my FC40 for use on the old pick up truck on 10m to 40m but seeing as I no longer have the FT857 or the pick up truck why do I have the whip???   It would look much better on Roy’s restored British Military Landrover…  So Needless to say its on its way out the door…

Roy’s Landrover looks a bit like this.  Change the colour to a British Army Green and make it the longer wheelbase model but its the same body style type  just with the longer wheelbase Its a treat to bounce (ride) in…

Whenever you hear me say “out the door” and radio equipment in the same sentence that cheering you hear is coming from Liz…  She does not mind me keeping stuff but hates when I keep something in the clutter room (basement) that I am not going to be using….

In the same timeframe Don VA3GFD and myself also need to double check the blood levels in our caffine system and its also been a while since we chatted.  Once the social side of things have been taken care of…. If the weather holds I would love to get the FT817 and the W3EDP out to a park for a while and actually play radio in the early evening when the outside temps are hopefully a bit lower with less humidity… (Thats where Murphy really comes into play)

The rest of the weekend will most likely be spent close to home enjoying the nice weather and perhaps building that new Gazebo that Liz wants me to pick up on Friday…  Not sure about Saturday and Sunday yet but if the Gazebo is as easy to assemble as they say it is ….  Sitting around enjoying the fruits of my labour would not be  a bad thing….

I believe that Murph has already been around so my beginning of the week plans most likely will be changing but I will know for sure on Friday but the lake is looking further away than it did before…

So as you can see there is some Radio in the plans and radio meetings and even radio operating…  The hope is that if I can get set up away from home some of my noise levels and poor performance from the antennas will not be as bad and I might be able to get some 80m work done in the early evenings if Murphy lets me…

73bob

The start of another week…

July 12, 2010

Saturday’s radio activity saw me attempting to control the Ontario Phone Net with limited results.  Good thing I had a bunch of relay stations as the 80m band just appears to be lousy for me at 1900 hours these days.  I know the antenna has not changed from when I USED TO talk across the province and the eastern seaboard in the early evenings but recently….shucks  I also managed a few contacts on 40m, 20m and 17m with good signal reports.  But then again in the IARU contest everyone is normally 5/9…

Sundays only radio attempt was very succesfull with the contact with the BRAQ balloon (see previous posts) when it was just under 200km from my location in Ottawa.  The balloon was using a cross band repeater (70cm input with a 2m output) and it was fun to check into their controlled net at the same time I was following the flight on aprs.fi.

Right now (Mon afternoon) I am sweltering in the shack (yes its still hot in Ottawa) listening to static where the ONTARS Net should be.  I have no doubts that the net is running….  My bet is that I can’t hear the NCS on 80 at this time of the day…

I’m kinda busy Tuesday (Trisha’s birthday) with going out to a family dinner in the evening so not much will be happening radiowise till most likely on Thursday.  I am hoping to get outside where I can stretch out some wire on Thursday or Friday.  Its a cooler setup in the shade under a tree and the antennas seem to work better when I don’t have to compromise when installing them.  I have noticed the W3EDP and the Windom both work better when I can stretch them out than folded around my yard at home…

As its so goshdarn hot in the shack my posting for the best part of the week will be done from the Netbook with its Wind Mobile Internet Stick which is still working well for me or tweeting updates which do show up on the blog using my phone… Look at the top right of the screen for the TWITTER UPDATES…

I will post my operating schedule for Thursday-Friday once I get it figured out with the whens and the wheres…

Looks like as of right now the FT817 with the W3EDP will be heading out to White Lake to visit Doug VE3DLJ on Monday, Tues and part of Wednesday next week so it will be QRP Operations from a quiet location.  Hope these plans will come together and I have my fingers crossed…

For now try and have fun and stay cool…

73bob

Made contact with the balloon

July 11, 2010

This morning around 1030 edst I decided to try and check into the net being held on the balloon’s cross band repeater…  I had my doubts as the FT897 only has an output of 20w on uhf fm…  My antenna for this was my 2m homebrewed JPole that seems to like 70cm as well at approx 30 feet above ground.

I GOT IN ON THE FIRST TRY AND WAS LOGGED AS QSO 41.

Its a real good start to the day…..

73bob

 

RAQI Balloon Launch Sunday

July 10, 2010

The following came in via an email list that I subscribe to and I thought I would share it with you .

=====================

Sunday morning, July 11, 2010, at around 9:00 am BRAQ will launch another high altitude ballon.

This email has been sent to Clubs from Ontario,  Québec, Maritimes and North-East of the USA, hoping that a large number of amateurs will be able to establish QSO

The main payload will consist in a VHF-UHF crossband repeater available to the amateur community while airborne.

THE FREQUENCIES AS BEEN CHANGED

The repeater input frequency is 445.525 Mhz with a tone of 103.5 Hz and the ouptput frequency is 145.560 Mhz. The power output of the repeater should be around .5 watts

This will be a  bilingual (French and English) directed net and net control with be  Gerry VE2AW. Check-ins are invited to use the phonetic alphabet and then will be required to provide their nickname and location (QTH).  A commemorative QSL card will be issued to all stations which are confirmed by the net control station.

ADDITIONNAL INFORMATIONS ON WEB PAGES BELOW

http://raqi. ca/braq/live. htm

DETAILS SUR LE LIEU DE RENCONTRE ET DE LANCEMENT, AINSI QUE SUR LES FRÉQUENCES

DETAILS ON LAUNCH SITE, PRE-FLIGHT MEETING AND ALL FREQUENCIES.

http://raqi. ca/braq/modules/ repeater/ repeater. htm AU SUJET DE LA REPETITRICE : ABOUT THE REPEATER

http://raqi. ca/braq/modules/ control/control. htm AU SUJET DU CONTROLLEUR DE VOL : ABOUT THE FLIGHT CONTROLLER

http://raqi. ca/braq/modules/ Tracker_balise/ tracker_balise. htm AU SUJET DE LA BALISE APRS ET CW :  ABOUT THE SECONDARY APRS TRACKER AND BEACON

=========================

73bob

New addition to my blogroll

July 10, 2010

You might of noticed the latest addition to my blogroll…  If not…. Join me in welcoming VE3GNA to the world of Blog…

Glenn is an AVID CW Operator (or is that rabid?)  and traffic handler.  He also in the RAC Ontario – Section Traffic MGR (STM).

Check out his blog at VE3GNA.wordpress.com

73bob

RAC Website updated…

July 10, 2010

While browsing around the RAC website I noticed that the directors montly meeting minutes have been updated with the March and May minutes now posted on line in the members only section.

The April meeting was held face to face in Ottawa and the minutes from that meeting will be posted when they are approved at the next annual meeting.  But between the Presidents writings in TCA and the RAC Blog i think we can figure out most of what happened.

Once the July monthly meeting has been conducted with the approval of the June minutes  I look forward to reading the June minutes on line.

I’m going to jump on my soapbox for a few paragraphs here…

I am still wondering why the monthly minutes have been moved to the members only section of the website.  As it stands right now there is no real way a non member can get up to date information  (which hopefully would convince them to join RAC) .

WHAT ARE WE HIDING HERE PEOPLE????

The minutes of the monthly meetings are in a restricted area and our wonderful publication The Canadian Amateur is not available (easily available ) to non members.  The only way a non member can really find out whats happening is check with the RAC Blog but there is only so much time the hard working blogmeister can dedicate to keeping us informed..

To be honest I would not mind seeing a pdf file of TCA go on the RAC Website after it gets mailed out to the membership.  I think our advertisers would appreciate a few more people reading their ads and I really think that our best way to get new members is to inform them.  The best way to inform them is give them access to information and then it should sell itself.

There would be no real costs involved in putting TCA on line as we have the webspace already and the PDF File would be easy to create (if its not already done for the printer).  The benefits greatly outweigh the very minor costs…

RAC is doing a good job on our behalf…  Now if we could just let the non members know how much RAC does on their behalf there is a chance that they might join…  All we have to do is give them access to the information…

Well thats my thoughts on the topic…  What do you think???  Try and keep your cool in this hot humid weather…

73bob

Remember back in January we were…

July 8, 2010

…B!tching about the cold temps…

Looks good on us now eh!!!  Now I normally like the warm temps.  Its a side effect of my heart issues that includes the use of blood thinners and now I acutally feel the cold which means the heat does not normally bother me…

Its so gosh darn golly gee whiz hot that I actually broke down and started installing air conditioners in some of the crucial windows (the master bedroom) which is something that we did not have to do last year at all…

Now back to Amateur Radio for a bit.  As you gathered by the previous comments we don’t have central air in our rental gardenhome.  This means that the shack (even though its in the basement) is way to warm and it too darn hot to lug any gear out into the park for portable ops so the radio activities are on hold due to heat.

I have tried disconnecting the feed line at the balun and running a 25 foot long run of RG8X to the Ft 817 on my patio table but there was an issue of the neighbors kids (not complaining as kids will be kids) and a garden hose that got a stream of water dangerously close to washing a FT817 so I have decided that was not one of my better plans.  Better yet it was a good plan just not till the kids go to the beach or the neighborhood pool to get wet…  Hoses, and kids go together but not when my radios are close by…

So I’m not as radio active on the HF bands due to heat…and the chance of moisture meeting radios…   Even on a good day I’m not that active on the local repeaters so I might not be radio active till the temps break and we return back to normal…

I can blog and check email from cold locations thanks to my two Wind mobile devices (internet stick for the netbook and my new smartphone) so I still am in touch… Liz won’t let me run the 100 feet or so of coax needed to make it from the balun to the master bedroom so for the next little while its internet instead of RF…

Hope you all are coping with the unusually hot and strange summer of 2010 weather…

73bob

Ontario QSO Party results in

July 6, 2010

This morning I checked my email and found out that the Contest Club Ontario has posted the results for the 2010 Ontario QSO Party.

The link to the results is here

Back in April I made mention of the QSO Party here and although I was not happy with my score I was going to submit it anyway…  Well I forgot or neglected to submit the score and by doing so missed out on anothe piece of wallpaper for the shack as my score of:

52 contacts with one special station for 61 points

29 multis

1769 points

Would of been enough to repeat as SOAB LP Phone winner for the City of Ottawa. 

Gotta have faith and confidence on my ab ilities or better yet get off my duff and do what said I would do…

Once again thanks to the CCO for running a fun event.

73bob

Happy 4th of July

July 4, 2010

To my American Neighbors and most of the North American Amateur Community not lucky enough to have a callsign that starts with a “V”

Happy 4th of July

73bob


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