It's raining outside, so I haven't gone to the Jeep for any lunch time QRP. In fact, I didn't bring the radio with me at all today. Yes, I will confess, I am a bit of a weather wimp. I hate setting up antennas (yes, even the Buddistick, which is a snap) this time of the year in the rain. Not a big issue for me in the late Spring or Summer, when it's warm. But when it's raining this time of year, it just feels raw - colder than it is, even if it's a bit warmer than it has been.
So I've been spending my lunch hour writing this post and Googling "Field Day Wire Antennas". Last year's EARCHI EFHW (Emergency Amateur Radio Communications Hawaii End Fed Half Wave) and G5RV both worked well, and more than likely, we are going to use them again. However, we have decided to add a digital station and a GOTA station, so we need to come up with two more wire configurations.
The digital station will be W2OU's FT-817 and I believe we are using KD2FSI's FT-897. Both W2OU and I have PAR END-FEDZ 10/20/40 antennas. While easy to deploy and use, they would prohibit us from getting on 80 Meters and 15 Meters. I am considering as possibilities, the G7FEK or perhaps the D3+ antenna. Both seem somewhat easy to construct. As the weather gets warmer, I may have to build one of each and then take them to the local park to see (in reality) how easy they are to set up and what kind of results I can garner.
K2VHW has a few disassembled multi band yagis in his garage. If he can determine that he has all the pieces and parts, we broached the concept of perhaps deploying one using an extension ladder as a "tower". That would make life a little easier for the QRP SSB guys.
My goal is to keep things as simple as possible while still allowing us to get credible results. After being out in the field for 24+ hours (if you include set up), no one really wants to face the prospect of spending an enormous amount of time tearing everything apart. Come 2:00 PM on Field Day Sunday, my mind is more on a good meal and a hot shower than worrying about packing and stowing.
We have ample time yet, so more investigation seems likely. Now if only I can find my copy of Bill Orr's "Simple Wire Antennas". That would help immensely!
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!