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Thread: first QSO on my HF rig today

  1. #41

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    I don't mind traveling. I just don't like snow nor baking heat.

    Moving I am tired of doing.

    As for getting on the air, I check the temperature multiple times per day, hoping it gets warm enough to get out there and talk.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  2. #42

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    Hi Jim,

    Saturday and Sunday look a whole lot warmer ... in the 50's although with Rain then it's downhill again for your temperatures, You can't win with this weather this winter.

    NOAA website: http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick...1#.VOdITOktAuQ

    I received an e-mail this morning from a ham near Knoxville, TN and he wrote that it was +3 F with Snow, Sleet and Ice on the way. He moved down south to get away from this type of weather 3 years ago. He's been bragging how warm the winters are near Knoxville till this year! I just looked at Tampa, FL and it's +40 F Whew is that Cold for those people about 40 degrees lower than normal. It's been hovering around Zero up here in the Chicago area but it's suppose to go up to +20 F with Snow ... Oh, Yippee like I want more of that! I'm going to be hunkering down staying warm in the house.

    Dan
    WA9WVX

  3. #43

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    Holy Snow bank, Batman !

    Decatur, Alabama is getting snow right now. Its around 30 miles north of me. Schools and businesses are closing early so everyone can get home before it arrives.

    But this isn't too bad, one of the folks I worked with on a web host, emailed us this morning. They are in Manitoba, Canada. It is -20F there.

    So +26F isn't too bad in comparison... But I don't much care for any temperature below +40F.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  4. #44

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    Hi Jim,

    I'm not sure why your friends went up to Manitoba, Canada at this time of the year as it's normally Cold up there. I was watching ABC News and I guess some Tornadoes came ripping through parts of Arkansas, Kansas and Mississippi yesterday and did a whole lot of damage. I would imagine that there are many hams helping out with disaster relief efforts. I also thought about your area but after looking at the temperatures, I doubt that would be a concern for Alabama. Going south of Oxford, Alabama, down into Florida the temperature continue to fall like a rock, In Jacksonville +46 F so the Panhandle has to be the same, down to Orlando it's +54 F, over in Tampa +46 F and farther south Miami is +64 F and finishing in Key West +61 F the southern most location for the continental U.S. Everybody in Florida is freezing their buns off! When you grow up and live in the south all your life, this weather is a Shock to most people throughout the southern states.

    Thirty eight years ago, we had a real Cold Snap in northern Illinois as the temperature dropped to -30 F for an entire month and not factoring in the Wind Chill Factor. It was surreal but most people including myself dealt with it the best way we knew how & certainly not spending a whole lot of time outdoors. Oh, there's one other factor living up here and that's the Humidity thrown in. I've heard that our winters are colder than up in Alaska! Holy Batman was it COLD!!!!

    Dan
    WA9WVX
    Last edited by WA9WVX; Fri 20th Feb 2015 at 19:42.

  5. #45

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    Oh, they live in Manitoba. They aren't visiting. I checked with them just a few minutes ago, they say its -22F there.

    It hasn't reached up to freezing all day here. But it is supposed to warm up this weekend. 57F on Saturday.

    So I am going to try and get out to the shack and start putting in insulation on the north wall.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  6. #46

    Join Date
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    Insulate the ceiling with R-24 Fiberglass. You will be amazed how warm your shack gets (and cool in the Summer)!

    Dave

  7. #47

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    cost would be a big factor as I have no income and spent most of my 401k payout moving up here and getting the storage shed. Nice suggestion though.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  8. #48

    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by N4AAB View Post
    cost would be a big factor as I have no income and spent most of my 401k payout moving up here and getting the storage shed. Nice suggestion though.
    OOPS ... I hope you have more $$$$ in your 401k otherwise it's going to be slim pickin's the rest of the way through your retirement. This hobby can easily eat up money if you're not careful. If you have enough of the R-13 left over after doing the walls, staple the remaining insulation up in the ceiling above your main area to prevent the heat or cooling from escaping through the room's ceiling. It's too bad your relatives didn't have a house with a basement as that alone could have saved a lot of money for you and right now you could have been on-the-air calling CQ and talking to other hams. At this rate it won't be till the middle of March when it should be warmer outside.

  9. #49

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    I did buy enough to have some to do the inside of the roof to. As for the basement, it is full of various items. We have talked about getting a rent-a-dumpster and dealing with enough of it so I can move into there. But with the shack insulated, I can work my rig out there.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  10. #50

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    Holy Cow Jim,

    It's +57 F in Oxford, Alabama at 1:15 PM local time, I hope you're out in shack with HF transceiver On while installing insulation in the walls. In retrospect, I think you should have tackle the basement storage problem first with a roll off dumpster and cleaned out enough room for a ham shack, maybe 10' x 10' and you would have been time and money ahead and made your relatives happier that the basement was cleaner and more useable at the same time.

    Dan
    WA9WVX

  11. #51

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    Nope, not on HF. Had another bought of upset stomach. The relatives are trying to get the kids to learn how to cook, so they will be able to take care of themselves after they move out and go to university. Their cooking skills leaves a bit to be desired.

    I might get out there tomorrow. I'm resting today.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  12. #52

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    Quote Originally Posted by N4AAB View Post
    Nope, not on HF. Had another bought of upset stomach. The relatives are trying to get the kids to learn how to cook, so they will be able to take care of themselves after they move out and go to university. Their cooking skills leaves a bit to be desired.

    I might get out there tomorrow. I'm resting today.
    Sounds like you no longer have the cast iron stomach that so many of us had when we were younger. I'm surprised that Uncle Jim hasn't helped point out some of their lacking food skills for the both generations.

    Well, here it is Monday again and more Bad weather headed your way as I reviewed the weather maps last night. I'm beginning to believe you have moved into "The Snow, Sleet & Ice Belt" in the southern United States ... What happened to the Sunny, Warm South? Did it get up and leave for a Vacation? Mother Nature sure isn't holding up her end of the bargain!!!

  13. #53

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    Yep, I thought about getting out there tonight, and the radio station I was listening to mentioned 'wintry mix' for tonight and Tuesday, along with Thursday this week.

    But I do have R-13 insulation.

    We are going to clean out the basement during spring break, and I'll move my bed down there. It has a sink, stove, fireplace, and fridge. I can cook more of my own meals then. I'm tempted to move my rig into the basement not long after then. I think the antenna is about 100 feet from the house, so I would have to buy new coax... I do have some rg-6 with cable tv connectors on it about that long. I would just need to cut those off, and put pl-259 connectors on it.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  14. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by N4AAB View Post
    Yep, I thought about getting out there tonight, and the radio station I was listening to mentioned 'wintry mix' for tonight and Tuesday, along with Thursday this week.

    But I do have R-13 insulation.

    We are going to clean out the basement during spring break, and I'll move my bed down there. It has a sink, stove, fireplace, and fridge. I can cook more of my own meals then. I'm tempted to move my rig into the basement not long after then. I think the antenna is about 100 feet from the house, so I would have to buy new coax... I do have some rg-6 with cable tv connectors on it about that long. I would just need to cut those off, and put pl-259 connectors on it.
    Hi Jim,

    Hmmm, wintry mix great just what you don't need. I received an e-mail earler today and my buddy near Knoxville said they received another 4" of snow last night and more on the way. He also mentioned with all the sleet they have received two counties west of him lost all of the electric power distribution poles snapping like tooth picks from the weight of the ice and that county has been without electricity for over 8 days. I guess Nashville really got hit hard by this storm front, people dying front hypothermia and accidents on the roads, it's a real mess for the native southern people living in the south as they have never experienced this type of weather.

    Well, Spring break isn't that far away as you've got a real project to tackle besides the shack itself. Now I'm wondering where the outdoor ham shack will fit into your plans. I'd run RG-8/U out to the outdoor ham shack and then connect it to the regular cable going to the 5BTV. This way if and when you get set up in the outdoor ham shack all you would be required to do is disconnect one PL-259 and route it back to your original set up that you have now. I'm wondering if the RG-6/U has a bona fide shield or just tin foil around the dialectric? If it only has tin foil that could really cause problems for the transmitted signal besides the 75 OHMS and 50 OHM system.

    Dan
    WA9WVX

  15. #55

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    I can check it, it was installed by Directv at my apartment. So it isn't cable company cable...

    Oh, all 4, count them four, county maintenance trucks are ready to put sand/salt combination on all the bridges in the county. The local news interviewed the maintenance supervisor during the noon news. The crews and trucks are ready !

    Egad.
    Last edited by N4AAB; Tue 24th Feb 2015 at 22:56. Reason: typos
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  16. #56

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    Jim,

    I don't know if you have looked at this weekend all next week, temperatures in the 50s, 60s & 70 on Tuesday, the only downside is the Rain they're predicting but it doesn't indicate any Thunderstorms. Maybe you'll able install insulation and do some more operating.

    Dan
    WA9WVX

  17. #57

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    I saw that. Today, the highest is 35F, temperatures dropping. Storm headed in. My cold is worse, but not too bad. We bought food last night, just in case roads shut down today. Fireplace and a propane grill if we need to cook without electricity. I have a weather scanner, but unless there is an update the recorded voice says the same thing over and over. I listen to it about twice a day. Got my 2m turned on.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  18. #58

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    We have about a half inch of snow. Forecast has been changed from 2-4 inches to 4-6 inches by midnight. I figured since I was out playing in the snow, I would get on 15m and see if I could pick anyone up. I did. He was transmitting 8 watts, but when I went down to 10 watts, he couldn't hear me. So, radials it is. My poor heater struggled mightily and got the shack up to 35F, outdoors of 32F.

    The snow came down like a light rain, stopped for a few minutes, then came down heavily. It has stopped, then sleet started. I guess tonight and Wednesday morning is going to be interesting.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

  19. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by N4AAB View Post
    We have about a half inch of snow. Forecast has been changed from 2-4 inches to 4-6 inches by midnight. I figured since I was out playing in the snow, I would get on 15m and see if I could pick anyone up. I did. He was transmitting 8 watts, but when I went down to 10 watts, he couldn't hear me. So, radials it is. My poor heater struggled mightily and got the shack up to 35F, outdoors of 32F.

    The snow came down like a light rain, stopped for a few minutes, then came down heavily. It has stopped, then sleet started. I guess tonight and Wednesday morning is going to be interesting.
    Jim,

    I don't care for temperatures like 32 to 35 F to be doing any hamming ... Geesh that is Cold in my book. I didn't look that close at the weather you are presently getting but it was a good idea to pick up more food for the family as you never know how this unusual weather my end up. Ok on working a QRP station on 15 m ... I wonder where he was? I think you are beginning to realize how important the missing radials / counter poise is for working stations near or far away but you'll have to wait till the weather warms up into the 70s and just deal with the situation as it stands right now. Did you know that verticals are prone to noise on receive whereas a dipole antenna is cross polarized to man made noise? This may also be a problem for future contacts and every antenna has it's own limitations while you operate. If you install an inverted "V" for 40 m, run the coaxial cable through you antenna tuner, you can operate on 15 m as the antenna with tuner will allow this option.

    Dan
    WA9WVX

  20. #60

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    Schools are closed on Wednesday and Thursday. Snow supposed to end Wednesday at 9 PM. I didn't stay in the shack long. But I did have shoes with socks on this time. He quickly confirmed my QSO on QRZ. So I have 2 out of 6 confirmed. I uploaded my ADIF to eQSL, but none of my contacts so far has an account there. I don't think I checked to see if all of them have accounts on QRZ or not. I know my first one doesn't QSL. He is in Connecticut.

    I went out to play in the snow, and decided to see how my radio got a signal out under these conditions. I thought about trying to see if I could pick up anyone else, but it was rather cold so I came in and got warmed up. Stayed inside the house after that.

    My relatives do think they RG6 will work from the basement. We will be working on clearing out part of it in the kid's spring break. Rent a dumpster and clean out some things so I can move down there. I have plenty of spare shelves, metal and heavy duty plastic, so I can order my room setting the way I want it. My brother-in-law has some plastic pipe that will fit one of my shelf units. So I can make a rig table entirely out of plastic. I have some anti-static matting I can put on top of that. Or I could go to one of the used furniture places around here and get a table and use it. I'm currently using a plastic folding table, with metal legs and metal supports.
    --
    73, Jim/N4AAB got my Extra class license on Aug 10, 2017. Vanity call in Oct, 2014.
    My Ham radio site has no popups, no music, no banners.
    'Through the thorns to the stars' from Ghost-in-the-Shell anime.

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