Sunday, April 11, 2010

Did OK at the Hamfest

The Splitrock Hamfest was good despite the fact that I got lost a little bit. I quickly found my way to my destination; and had a good time rummaging around. It was sunny and cool; a good day for a drive and a good day to be outside.

Mr. Radio Shack bins was there again; and I had another fun time looking for dollar bargains. I picked up some momentary push button switches as well as a battery holder that will hold three AAA batteries. These are items that are prefect for the AA0ZZ keyer that I am building next. I also picked up some small prototype perf boards for a buck and some other items. If it weren't for the crowd, I probably would have spent a longer time looking though his bins. I saw battery holders of all types and I asked if by chance he had any for three AAA batteries. I half expected him to say something like, "What's in there is in there"; but he surprised me by reaching under the table and digging out one of what I needed.

I also picked up two "technician's" tool kits. These are in fake leather folder type cases which are marked with logos from pharmaceutical companies, so I am assuming these were promotional freebie giveaways that the seller had access to. Inside each is a small hammer, a pair of regular pliers and a pair of needle nose pliers, a flashlight, a small tape measure, a pair of hemostats, tie wraps, a small flat bladed screwdriver, a small assortment of Allen wrenches and a screwdriver handle that will take an assortment a various screwdriver bits (flat blade and Phillips type) as well as an assortment of open end hex sockets ranging from 7/16" to 3/16".

The vendor was selling them for $15 a piece and I was looking at them; and he told me that since these were his last two, he would give to me both for $20. I figured I can put one in my QRP rucksack and the other I could keep near the shack bench. These are not high quality, heavy duty tools; but in a pinch out in the field, they might make the difference between a day of successful operating or a day of disappointment.

The other stop I made was to the "Connector Lady" as I call her. She comes to a lot of New Jersey Hamfests from Pennsylvania. From her I purchased some 2.1 and 2.5 mm power plugs. The 2.5 mm variety are pretty standard for QRP radios and I needed a 2.1 mm for the ACME Gel cell charger I built a while back. In addition, I purchased some chassis mount BNC connectors and some BNC to PL259 adapters. I always seem to misplace those, so I figured it couldn't hurt to have a few more.

No big purchases of radios or other big items - just small stuff. I saw some Hams who are friends and had a pleasant spring Sunday morning.

72 de Larry W2LJ

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