jeudi 23 avril 2015

Another latenight QSO

At about 2315 my time in Benodet, I heard a very strong signal from Dennis K1LGQ on 14.050. Called him after his previous QSO and he returned immediately. He was amazed I was getting across the pond with one watt from my HW-8 and Par wire antenna. I was delighted to QSO him again after a fruitless evening trying to work some DX with the Heath. Funny just when I am about to put the old girl in a box, something nice happens

lundi 20 avril 2015

0100 in the morning QRP

Serious problems at my USA QTH (younger sister possibly in early dementia) kept me awake thinking what can be done...must be done. Went up to my hole-in-the-wall radio room to listen in. On 20 meters as usual. I gave a CQ call on 14.060 several times. Then Mike, K1OV/qrp answered. We completed a nice QSO. Averaging 549 RST. Slow to medium speed CW which is best when operating weak signal QRP. We were both at 4 watts. But what was very satisfying was we were both using wire antennas. He a dipole and I the Par EF-20. So let us say wire-to-wire antennas can work at 2X QRP levels. One of the two having a Yagi is not, always, necessary.

Took my mind off the USA problem which must be addressed this summer.

73 Dick

dimanche 12 avril 2015

"down-under" again

The K1 has been working well this week. Another Australian contact this morning from here in Benodet. Was Dave, VK3DBD. He began with about 200 watts then dropped down to 4 watts. Remained a good RST 579 at that last power level. His 3 element yagi very likely the determining factor. Nice chat, more than a signal report.. 73 Dick.

mercredi 8 avril 2015

The HW-8 scores again...and K1

Only one call sign repeat. First time for me. A45XR Oman on 20M cw with 1.2 watts from the old HW-8. 3763 miles from Benodet.

73 Dick

Adding VK3XU worked this morning on 20m cw running 4 watts from the K1

lundi 6 avril 2015

Still Problems

Well. I'll try again. Don't ask what went wrong this time! Here are a few contacts over the past week or so:

dimanche 5 avril 2015

Blog back

I had a computer crash while at St. Raphael. Using an unsecured, marginal provider from the apartment ended with disastrous results. Also the computer was an old one used for travelling.  So no blog or blogging.

Since my return to Benodet I have been pretty busy with one thing or another. Purchased airline tickets for our summer-sejour in NW New York State. About 10 weeks planned.  Visits to family and friends...and 97 year old mom in nursing home. We hope to get to Cape Cod while there.  Been 8 or 9 years since our last visit. I would like to take in the WCC radio museum at Chatham and the French Transatlantic Cable Museum. Well, decisions still to be  made on that subject as our departure is for mid-June.

As you can see by the photo, I have my "new" Argonaut 509 installed. Works very well. I keep the output power at 3.5 watts as the finals are no longer available. It will do 5 watts but I'm not taking chances. I had an Australian QSO with the rig a week ago. The HW-8 is used just as frequently with a couple transatlantic contacts.

One thing I will do in the States is get my other HW-8 sitting there repaired by a Heath repair service. The rig still has output but needs some help. In spite of The modern QRP rigs I have, the HW-8 is actually my transceiver of choice.

I am concerned about Ten-Tec and the recent convolutions that company is undergoing. My concern essentially for parts and service. I had planned to take advantage of an offer to buy an Argonaut 515 at a fair price. But if Ten-Tec will no longer support that older rig then the purchase is out as I don't need a transceiver book-end. In fact, I intend to call Ten-Tec from here this week to see what services they have that might remain. That will be the determining factor.

Anyway, hope you had a good Easter. We are on a strict diet so no chocolate bunnies.



Late news. I called TT and spoke to their technician. The finals are no longer available. Unfortunate!