Field Strength Meter

I’m going to use this new old stock Simpson panel meter for a field strength meter. I’m thinking of making it Arduino or Raspberry Pi based so it can be made wireless – have the sensing circuit out in the yard and it sends data and have the meter in the shack. Kind of a weird digital – analog mash up. There are many…

The Future of DX-ing and DXCC: ROBOTS!

I’ve been grappling with this for a few years, ever since I was involved with fund raising for VK0EK. I don’t think the average DX-er really knows what a big job it is.  The funniest thing about this blog post is that it came about while sipping a very nice Uinta Detour Double IPA and just sitting back and thinking – musing about the…

First u.RAT Presentation at EBARC and Making vs. Collecting

Saleae Logic Analyzer- with an Arduino sketch that loops and continually sends the word “Hello” My good friend Mike, KJ4Z and I had a nice chat about DX-ing vs. Making in the Ham Radio hobby. Mike made a comment that is so true – he said DX-ing is all about “collecting” and that over time there is less and less to collect and it…

First Stop on the u.RAT World Tour: EBARC in El Sobrante

I will be giving my first Maker – Ham presentation at the EBARC meeting this Friday: 7:30pm, Friday, August 11th, at the El Sobrante Library on Appian Way This will be my “warm up” for Pacificon, and several Diablo DXers will be on hand    

The u.RAT as an Educational Platform

What started out as a personal project – to use the Elecraft KPOD to control the Palstar BT-1500A, has turned into an educational platform that I can use to write articles and give presentations at Makers Meetups and Ham Radio Club and convention gatherings. I’m giving my first urat presentation at EBARC in San Pablo in just two weeks –  August 11. EBARC has…

U.RAT Video Wrap Up

Here is the full on video for the u.RAT:

The u.rat world tour: First stop – EBARC

On Friday, August 11, I will kick off the first stop on the 2017 u.RAT World Tour at the East Bay Amateur Radio Club (EBARC): http://www.ebarc.org/events.htm The second stop on this World Tour will be Pacificon – Saturday morning (I’m waiting on the time slot at this point): http://pacificon.org/ You will notice that the Pacificon web site still points to last years event, so…

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the U.RAT . . .

OK, so that’s a bit dramatic – but I’ll be busy first wrapping up the final “packaging” of the u.RAT Demonstration Board, and then writing articles and presentations. I will submit the article to QST with the main theme one that I will repeat at EBARC and Pacificon – which is that the “Maker – Ham” connection is a real force to be reckoned…

U.RAT Key Learnings

Here are some key design notes and learnings: I had to use a Raspberry Pi due to the fact that the KPOD driver software is written in C and compiled on Linux. The KPOD is a proprietary device using the HIDRAW protocol, so its not exactly the same as a keyboard or mouse The WiringPi library turns the interfacing part between software and pin…

The uRAT Has Landed!

YEAH BABY, YEAH! The uRAT now works very nicely – exactly as I had envisioned it working: The “secret sauce” included: Elecraft sharing a KPOD utility that is part of their development and QA suite (thanks Paul, N6HZ and Eric, WA6HHQ!) WiringPi – Gordon Henderson of Devon, UK, who created a C library that makes it as easy to work with RaspberryPi GPIO as…