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Successful Walkathon
Mar 29th, 2009 by kmack

Saturday 28 March we participated in a walkathon at our ministry. To spice things up, I went Pedestrian Mobile on 20m and had fun. The CQ WPX contest crowded the bands with high power contesters, but I had fun walking and listening to the good dx. My new configuration worked well but I have more ideas on how to keep improving the mix and making the rig more stable in the high winds we often get here.

After the walk was completed, I  helped my friend, Matt KC8IWD align a newly received NorCal 40 with the Buddistick clamped on the balcony railing of our ministry’s prayer tower. Boyz n toyz…

73,

Kelly K4UPG

Ready, set, GO!!!

Ready, set, GO!!!

Hello CQ!

Hello CQ!

Watch out for my counterpoise!

Watch out for my counterpoise!

Just one more qso before I quit...

Just one more qso before I quit...

Tweaking the new Norcal 40

Tweaking the new Norcal 40

Pedestrian Mobile Honeymoon Island, Florida Mar 21, 2009
Mar 21st, 2009 by kmack

After taking a few laps of the tailgate vendor area at the Gulf Coast Amateur Radio Club Hamfest in New Port Richey, my wife, Connie and I drove down to Honeymoon Island State Park and Beach on the Gulf coast north of Clearwater/St. Petersburg.  This was my first time out with the new setup for pedestrian mobile. I learned a lot and had a blast despite semi-poor band conditions and a very windy day.

I was using a MFJ 9420 on 20 meter SSB to my Buddistick mounted on my backpack frame. I connected with several HF-Pack members on the 14, 342.5  MHz hangout or there abouts… heard lots of others too. Budd Drummond, W3FF was spotting and helping the portable and mobile stations make connections. Budd was pounding in at 20 over S9 from California and had the best signal I heard all day. Lower on the band I heard good signals from Spain, Azores, and a few G3′s but my 10 watts didn’t compete with the contest crowd today at least.

Here’s some photos of the setup I used. Will refine it to prevent some of the wind related problems I experienced today and post more detailed photos in case someone is considering a similar rig. The wind load on the Buddistick and bicycle flag combination was a real surprise and caused a number of issues for me.

Honeymoon Island initial testing.

Honeymoon Island initial testing.

First contact brings a smile to my face!

First contact brings a smile to my face!

Tweaking to compensate for sun caused vfo drift

Tweaking to compensate for sun caused vfo drift

Working the HF Pack 20m frequency

Working the HF Pack 20m frequency

Wind forced me to the pier

Wind forced me to the pier

A New Thing? Central Florida QRP Group is Forming!
Mar 14th, 2009 by kmack

This morning  14 March 2009, five Central Florida qrp ham radio operators met at a Perkins restaurant in Altamonte Springs at 0730 EDT. We were dreaming and scheming about getting a group together for portable ops, homebrew building sessions, elmer, and on-air cw practice and other activities. Some pretty sweet qrp rigs were on display too.

No officers, no members, no dues, just come and participate… any takers? Let us know and we’ll be glad to help you get hooked up. Contact K4AHO or K4UPG via the qrz.com info.

More details to come soon.

72,

Kelly K4UPG

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