Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Always send in that log!

In the IARU HF Championships in June 2016 I made a paltry 129 contacts in 38 zones for a score of 14,022 points. By contrast, the single-operator winner made 3,320 QSOs in 323 zones for a score of 4,891,512. My score was 0.29% of the winner.

But, out of all the logs in the CW-only, high power division submitted from the Santa Clara Valley section, I was on top!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

VMware Amateur Radio Club on the air!

I'm excited to be able to say that, after a few years of planning and, and many fits and starts, the VMware Amateur Radio Club has W6VMW on the air! We have a VHF/UHF station and an HF station.

You can find an article I wrote about it for the NCCC Newsletter March 2017 here. See page 18, "Launching W6VMW". To set the stage, the tower was mounted a long time ago when a different company occupied the building, and some old antennas needed to be removed from it. These videos show the installation of our new antennas on the existing tower. But here are a few stills of the prep work removing the old antennas. We'd originally thought we could get the old antennas down and the new ones up in the scheduled time, but that didn't work out. So we brought the crew back over the 2016 holiday break to finish things.

Here are some stills not included in the Jug article, and and some videos of the antenna installation.

Work Session 1 - Sure, we can do it all in a day!

Bob, K6XX, removes the existing 20+ year-old yagi

Reed, N1WC assembles the JK Navassa 5

 K6XX gets the 40m dipole on the mast - with the sun low on the horizon

With the bulk of the work not finished, we called it a day and scheduled the JV team to come out again during the week between Christmas and New Years. Bob lashed the dipole to the mast so it wouldn't spin out of control if we had weather in the meantime.

Work Session 2
Picking up from where we left off (with good weather, thankfully!):

JV and Bob raise the mast, with the VHF/UHF antenna and 40m dipole mounted, in preparation for mounting the Yaesu rotator

The Navassa 5 lifts off from the roof and is winched up a few feet

Bob shows why he was just off the podium in the 1992 Olympic Greco-Roman Wrestling competition



For more details about the station and how we got here, be sure to read the Jug article. A big KB thanks to JV, K6HJU, Reed, N1WC, and Bob, K6XX, for getting our aluminum up in the air!

Friday, February 17, 2017

Yes, I should be working...

...but it's more fun running JAs on 15 meters from some random conference room at work using the W6VMW club station remotely!


Yes, you can also make QSOs from a Starbucks: