are not what they used to be, that is for sure. I re-started building my NE QRP Nescaf filter kit this afternoon. Last time I started, all I managed to get installed were the three IC sockets, before I got called away to work on something else.
This afternoon, I began to solder components in. And of course, I misplaced a resistor and a capacitor since I unpacked it so many months ago. Looks like a trip to the local electronics store on the way home from work tomorrow.
But back to the title of this post. My eyes are not what they used to be. I used to use a binocular magnifier just to read the printed info on capacitors, ICs and transistors. Now I seem to need them for reading the component designations of the PC board itself. And they are a must now for soldering and checking for solder bridges. My bifocals don't seem to be doing the job by themselves, anymore. It's probably time for another trip to the eye doctor, anyway.
In between soldering components in, I got two QSOs in the log to count for January 23rd, as they were after 7:00 PM local time. One was with P48ADI in Aruba on 40 Meters. He was very loud into New Jersey - 599 Plus. I was calling and calling and calling with no luck. That seemed strange to me as Aruba is a very easy go from New Jersey (most of the time). On a hunch, I decided to switch from the EDZ to the Butternut - cha ching! First shot - go figure. On 40 Meters, the wire is usually a better player than the vertical; but maybe I am going to have to re-examine that theory with a little more experimentation.
I switched over to 80 Meters and to my delight, my CQ was answered by Jim W1PID, who was my first QSO for 2012 back on SKN. We had a nice chat for just over a half an hour. It's always super nice to run into Jim; and the QSOs are never boring or routine. In fact, they're the kind of QSOs you wish would go on for a while.
So for the week ahead, I have to get over to Greenbrook Electronics to pick up a few 4.7 Ohm resistors and some 33uF capacitors (I only need one of each; but can you imagine heading up to the cash register with just one of each?). And I also have to make an appointment with the eye doctor.
Getting old is a pain.
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!