10th Anniversary Giveaway!

On April 30th, it will be ten years since the "W2LJ - QRP - Do More With Less" blog was born.

In appreciation for all who read this blog, I am going to give something away to one lucky reader. I have a new, mint condition, unused, complete sheet of fifty United States Amateur Radio stamps, issued in 1964 on the 50th Anniversary of the ARRL - Scott #1260. I am going to have the sheet matted and framed - ready for display on some deserving shack wall. All I ask is that you send an e-mail to w2lj@arrl.net - entitled "Blog Anniversary Giveaway". Include your name, call sign and mailing address.

Any Amateur Radio op worldwide can enter. I will package and ship the framed stamps to any destination that the United States Post Office will accept.

The names and call signs will be loaded into a software program such as RandomPicker on April 30th and a winner will be determined. The winner will be announced here, and then the framed stamps will be posted.

Good luck, and thank you for reading!

Friday, January 06, 2006

SKN 2006

Straight Key Night was a week ago; and as usual, it was fun! It was nice to hear 80 Meters filled with wall-to-wall CW signals. It reminded me as to how 80 Meters used to be most nights back during my Novice days in the late 1970s.

I only had about four QSOs on New Year's Eve; but they were fun, relaxing and enjoyable. I used two different straight keys and both were a pleasure to use. I started off with an old Western Union J-38 that I acquired from eBay a few years ago. I have it mounted on an extra heavy aluminum base - it goes NOWHERE! I have it adjusted so that the action is barely perceptable, yet positive. I could send all night on that baby.

The other key was the Christmas 2005 miniature key that my wife gave me for Christmas a week ago. It was surprisingly comfortable and easy to use. Even though it is small and light, it has three rubber feet on its base that keeps it where you put it.

24 hours later, on New Year's night it was amazing to see the "difference a day made". That night there were barely ANY signals on 80 Meters and it took me about an hour to drum up a QSO. That ended up being with a local guy who lives probably less than 10 miles or so away from me. It would be nice indeed to have that kind of activity on the bands every night of the year!

73 de Larry W2LJ

PS: We're into the sixth day of January and I've logged 38 QSOs so far this month! Hopefully, I will get a good start on breaking my total for 2005.

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