80M LC Circuit Added

The 80M circuit is now in Position 1, 30M is Position 2, and 160M is Position 3.

I no longer need the Palstar AT2K – the SPE ATU can now handle 160, 80, 40, 30, 20M with the Inverted L. However, I’ll leave it inline just in case – I might want to use the Inverted L on another band when 3Y0Z fires up – the higher bands would need a tuner. But my 17M Extended Double Zepp will be a better antenna for the high bands.

The biggest lesson learned is that a 160M antenna can easily become a great 30M antenna, but 80M is a much different story. As it is, I have to work at reduced power on 80M – because while it does work at full power, I can see that its a struggle. 500 watts is no problem, and since I only ever use it for a nightly net, it will be just fine. I should add a separate wire at the top of the vertical in the future like the Battle Creek Special does – so I will have more bandwidth on 75 and 80M.


2017 Wrap Up: DXCC Most Wanted

Clublog’s Most Wanted List for December, 2017 and End of the Year

I was very pleased to see Heard Island drop all the way down to #29 now – I have been hoping it dropped to somewhere in the 30’s, and it looks like that will happen soon.

I only need #2 – Bouvet, and hope in about 1 months time that I can say I only have one last one to go – Glorioso, which is #12.

Its really funny, but the Top 10 Most Wanted list all of a sudden looks boring to me – it used to be a source of excitement and motivation. Lucky me – I have new interests and paths in this vast hobby of Amateur Radio – I am by no means bored nor do I feel I will ever get to the point where there is nothing left to do.

It will always depend on how far out of my “comfort zone” I want to go.

Samuel F.B Morse and Parallels With Today in the US

The times that Morse lived in had some parallels with our modern times, specifically regarding new technology development, religion and politics.

There was an endless line of shysters who were ready to take advantage of his trusting nature, and while he “marketed” his work as his own, he did have lots of input and like all technologies, leveraged others work. Some I feel he did not give enough  credit to, like Alfred Vail. However, he did come up with the basic ideas and design for the telegraph – meaning his implementation. There were plenty of competing designs. His was the simplest and arguably most elegant in its simplicity, which meant it was also most robust.

Patent Law was very new in the US, and there were many fights technically and what would have been “Technical Marketing”. Lots of scams and lots of shysters. Morse had to repeatedly prove his ideas and fight off law suits right and left.

Morse was a religious zealot and I did not know that at one time, Catholics in the US were treated the way Muslims are now being treated – as a pariah of sorts.

There was plenty of chicanery and corruption – our republic was new and fragile – there were Nativist’s, and a split in the country leading to turmoil and the Civil War. There was interference from other countries as what we have had with Russia today. There were recessions as well – even depressions. There were fights and issues with immigration. Small wars broke out.

I’ve been surprised to see so many parallels with what we have been going through in 2016 and 2017.

The Zig Zag

I have a 36′ vertical just laying on the ground, and I could easily bolt it to a fence post 36′ away from the 41′ vertical and have it line up with Bouvet nicely.

It does look like  phased array on a few bands . . .

And EZNec says it might be better on Top Band.

Just something to think about . . .

The > 12 Days of Christmas

A few years back, Kat and I visited the Lost Abbey and Port Brewing brewery in San Marcos, California. This is the home to RF Parts, a company I have purchased many radio goodies from, mostly tubes. 807’s?

A year ago, we rode our bikes past the hop fields in the gorgeous Willamette Valley in Oregon, and when we reached Eugene, we ended our trek at Ninkasi Brewing. I just love the humorous port and stout beers that come out at Christmas time.

The labels are hilarious.

Bikes and beer – and radio – and computers – and photography – and electronics – and family – and wildlife and geography and maps and yes, gardening, these are but a few favorite things. I’m sure there are way more than 12 things to sing about and be thankful for.

Oh, and DXing, and living history – going to art and history museums and trains and reading biographies of inventors, and music, (both listening to our favorites as well as playing it). Kat’s cooking is to die for. She makes most restaurants pale in comparison. Not SAD!

Ok, that’s more than 12 favorite things, and more than 12 days of Christmas.


RLC Low Pass

RLC Low Pass Circuit

From Wikipedia:

low-pass filter (LPF) is a filter that passes signals with a frequency lower than a certain cutoff frequency and attenuates signals with frequencies higher than the cutoff frequency. The exact frequency response of the filter depends on the filter design.

I’ve incorporated the circuit into my schematic:

This is going to be very easy to install and wire up – I can’t wait to test it out! I’m finally going to have an Inverted L tuned for 160, 80 and 30M without the need to use the AT2K – and where just the SPE ATU will work. For other bands – if I need to use the Inverted L as a backup, I would use the AT2K as well.



80M LC Circuit 

It was easy to get the LC circuit to work, as I have two excellent components. The roller inductor is a Palstar inductor and the variable capacitor is from an Ameritron ATR-30 where I had to constantly fix the edge wound roller inductor, so I junked it and am using it’s parts.

They both fit at the top of the box and will easily replace the UNUN that didn’t quite cut the mustard. If I want, I can even use the URAT make the circuit remote tuneable – so  this project has an evolution that tracks my learning.

And I can tell you that I have really stepped up a couple notches by doing the URAT and now this. Its been the most fun I’ve had in ham radio, (and I did worry if there would be life after DXCC).

Well, there is!