Sunday, February 27, 2005 Zulu
K6WAY Pixie2
K6WAY QSO Pixie 2

I had a real QSO on my Pixie 2! I heard K6WAY Mike calling CQ on 7.040 or so at around 1835Z and answerd him. He didn't return the call so I switched the cap on the xtal and he came back the first time and got my call!

I had terrible QRM from an AM broadcast station that was running an infomercial on nutritional supplements designed for "cleansing" and so it was a surreal experience trying to copy CW through all the QRM but I haven't figured out how to eliminate it yet...

Mike was running an FT920 at 100W into a 30ft high inverted vee fromS Stockton, CA. I am sure his RX helped a lot, but not bad for a 500mw output! At one point I dropped down to 100mW and he seemed to copy me as well.

I tried an Alkaline 9V instead of a CZn 9V thinking that might help BCB QRM (theory bing LM386 undercurrent nonlinearity doing the detection) but it didn't help.

- posted by Leigh @ 19:05 z 0 comments
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lots of pixie 2 tips. looks like my BCB interference might be in the audio stage or perhaps with the wrong kind of inductors.
- posted by Leigh @ 06:38 z 0 comments
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Photo 586Pixie2Photo 590Photo 589Photo 588Filter
I finished my Pixie 2 on 7040KHz. If I hook up only the center conductor I get 40m nicely but can't transmit. If I hook up the gnd too I get distorted AM BCB. I built a simple filter from parts I got at Halted and stuck it on a BNC connector and that cuts down the AM BCB to the point where I can hear it undistorted and hear some CW in the background. Oh well. The switch on the side shorts out an 82pf capacitor that is between the crystal and its ground. They call it "RIT" but it is really the required TX offset.
- posted by Leigh @ 00:35 z 0 comments
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Friday, February 25, 2005 Zulu
I built a $9.95 Pixie 2 from Halted for 7.040. No VXO/RIT. Also no power, antenna, earphone, or key jacks yet...
- posted by Leigh @ 07:26 z 0 comments
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I checked into the Elecraft Net ECN on 10.115 with AA0NI Daniel as NC from my car with a 30m hamstick and my KX1.
- posted by Leigh @ 01:41 z 0 comments
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I tried to work kb2ee Larry in Rochester, NY and tell him I was at the Xerox parking lot at PARC but when he answered me on 10115 we got clobbered by a pile-up eminating feom a VP2 on 10103 or so that had suddenly spread up that far.
- posted by Leigh @ 01:18 z 0 comments
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Thursday, February 24, 2005 Zulu
Photo 578Photo 577
I worked R1ANF at Bellingshausen station on King George Island in the South Shetland Islands off the coast of Antartica on 14.010 and got a 5NN with my KX1 and a 16ft wire to a tree from the parking lot at PARC. He was booming in at 0100z.
- posted by Leigh @ 01:07 z 0 comments
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From my car in the parking lot at PARC I worked W5UXS/5, Dave, who was in Templer, TX in an RV. Band conditions changed and he said 73, but a few minutes later...
- posted by Leigh @ 00:40 z 0 comments
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Monday, February 21, 2005 Zulu
Photo 571Photo 572
Here is my mostly-completed Ekektor-Electronics DRM receiver. BF494-2n2222a BF548c-2n3904. Toroid for 3.3uH. 100uH coil has a Q of 60 instead of less than 10.
- posted by Leigh @ 17:19 z 0 comments
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Sunday, February 20, 2005 Zulu
- posted by Leigh @ 00:51 z 0 comments
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Monday, February 14, 2005 Zulu
Photo 557
New Card, from QSLWorks.
- posted by Leigh @ 21:43 z 0 comments
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Ready for pedestrian mobile, hi hi.
- posted by Leigh @ 21:43 z 0 comments
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First TR-4C QSO

I traded N5LK my PSK-20 for his Drake TR-4C and sent it off to The Man Electronics, John Kriner, who does TR-4 repairs. John found some flakey tube sockets and sent the rig back to me aligned and working. Unfortunately, UPS took care of the "working" part and I had a few minor things to do to it when it got back here. The tubes and relay had come out of their sockets, and one of the sockets (IF amp) remained flakey. But I got it working, except for the backlights, which flaked out again.

Next project was getting the tuner to work. I think it's an Ultimte Transmatch, since it has a split capacitor on the input, but I haven't studied it carefully enough. It worked sporadically, fine for my FT-817 to make a 60M QSO on 25W or so to Hawaii, but when I pre-tuned it for 20M and tried it with the TR-4C I was rewarded with unhappy finals.

So last night I took it apart again, cleaned some (but not all) of the screw-terminal contacts, polished the silver on the inductor, and replaced the broken binding post on the balanced output with the exact same part from Radio Shack, purchased last week! The balun is black and sticky, and I don't know what's on it but I think it needs to be replaced, and possibly redesigned -- I haven't looked at how it's hooked up.

Anyway, I used my antenna analyzer and got a good match on 20M and another on 40M with my G5RV, so I decided to tune around late and listen for opportunities. On 7018 or so at 0555z I heard W0UI calling CQ. I answered, but after the 559 report I heard nothing. Woody came back a minute later and said he had shack noise and had to turn off his computer. Woody was runninga Johnson Valiant for TX and a Collins 75A4 with a Gap Voyager antenna. Woody has been a ham since he was 11, and I'm sure we'll have more to talk about next time I see him on the bands.

Woody also gets the first of my WA5ZNU cards that looks like the old WN5ZNU ones.

- posted by Leigh @ 07:53 z 0 comments
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Friday, February 11, 2005 Zulu
Mic plug for Drake
Drake TR-4C Mic Plug N5LK sez
Red (hot) wire to "tip" braid to barrel, and other wire to the ring

- posted by Leigh @ 22:16 z 0 comments
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Thursday, February 10, 2005 Zulu
AntennaPhoto 540
I hooked up my K2 and a piece of 75 ohm coax to a LDG 4:1 balun and two pieces of wire, and put that in a bush in the back yard about 8 ft off the ground in a bush. I heard WL7NR Bill gave me 4x3 and I gave him 5x9 on 14.204.95. Bill was 65 sw of Anchorage on the Kenai Peninsula in Soldotna, AK.
- posted by Leigh @ 20:45 z 0 comments
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Transmatch and NH7RX on 60M
I hooked up the T-match tuner that N5LK gave me and cleaned it up. I got it to tune up well on most bands, and when I went to 5371.50. I heard NH7RX Sonny in Hawaii 5x9. There was some QSB and by the time it was my turn he was 5x7 and Sonny gave me a 5x5 with QRN. They didn't hear me at 5W on the FT-817 but did when I ran 25 on the HFPacker amp.
- posted by Leigh @ 06:46 z 0 comments
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Wednesday, February 09, 2005 Zulu
I started on the Elektor Electronics DDS DRM receiver today.
- posted by Leigh @ 07:50 z 0 comments
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Monday, February 07, 2005 Zulu
FYBO 2005 Single Field Battery QRP Score 480
Call	Name	Freq   ST TX	RX	OM T	MY T	P	Z
K8UO	 ARP	21.060 MI 599	599	5F	 66F	4W	2038Z
W0NTA	 Dick	14.060 CO 599	599	54F	 65F	5W	2158Z
W0RW	 Paul	14.060 CO 599	539	35F	 66F	3W	2200Z
AA1MY	 Seab	14.060 ME 599	599	33F	 64F	5W	2217Z
WD8RIF	 Eric	14.060 OH 579	579	42F	 64F	5W	2237Z
W7SW	 Scotty	14.060 AZ 589	559	64F	 64F	5W	2244Z

I was using my K2 and a 33ft wire directly fed on two fishing poles (14 and 22ft) on 40 and 15 and a 16ft wire on the 14ft pole on 20, and a wire or two on the ground, powered with the K5OOR PowerPak. There were about 50 people operating at SLAC on a 250ft hill at the mini-FD organized by FARS.

For logging, I used XDIF log format, and have developed an XML "stylesheet" to calculate the score, taking into account the logged temperature, power source, field location, etc. Here is the FYBO 2005 XDIF log and XSLT stylesheets.

- posted by Leigh @ 22:45 z 0 comments
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