Sunday, August 09, 2015

Thank you to all!

Thanks to all of you who participated in the NJQRP Skeeter Hunt!

Thank you, thank you, thank you ..... THANK YOU!

As usual, I had a blast.  There seemed to be a lot of Skeeter activity in amongst the SKCC WES'ers and the WAE'ers. From time to time it felt like you needed a scorecard to figure out who was working what. In all I made 45 QSOs, most of which were Skeeters and I believe I got the word bonus, too.  It was fun. And to make matters even better, the weather was perfect this year. It was in the low 80s (28C) with a slight breeze and I was in the shade. It felt magnificent to be outdoors on a day like today!

This time, instead of using the PAR or the EARCHI, I used a W3EDP antenna. In fact, it was the one that I made for use at SPARC Field Day. When I got to the park, I launched a line into a tree that was located right near the spot that I had picked to operate. I attached the coax to my LDG 4:1 BALUN and hoisted it to the point where the end of the coax would be at the same level and would attach easily to the KX3.  Then I picked a tree close to 84 feet away and launched a line for the other end of the W3EDP.  When lifted into place, the far end of the antenna was up at the 35-40 foot level (10-11 Meters).

The antenna worked beautifully and I was able to work everyone that I was able to hear. 16 of the 45 QSOs were on 40 Meters, the rest were on 20 Meters. As a matter of fact, I worked N3AQC and W3BBO on both 20 and 40 Meters and I was blown away by how loud both were on 20 Meters. I never expected PA stations to be so loud on 20 Meters. It's usually just not the case.

Since the KX3 will tune up a W3EDP on all bands, I even checked out 15 and 80 Meters for a bit. There was no activity on either band that I was able to hear.

I had a few visitors. One was a woman walking her dog, who was wondering if I was listening for seismic activity. Of course I told her "no" and explained what I was doing.  The other was an inactive Ham who was intrigued by what was going on and perhaps, just perhaps, I rekindled a sparc (pun intended). I invited him to the next SPARC meeting.  He started going on about not having equipment and not knowing CW, but I told him none of that matters. We have all kinds of experience levels and various interests at SPARC and no matter his experience level or whatever he likes to do radio-wise, he's always welcome.

I stayed to the bitter end and clean up went super fast. I was home by 5:20 PM and left no sign that I was ever there. A very good day, indeed, and I already can't wait for next year!

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!


  1. Excellent, details-packed report on the NJQRP event. Like you, I've found the classic W3EDP antenna a winner for portable and emergency use. Get this antenna between 35 and 50 feet/10.67 and 15.24 meters above ground and you'll have an antenna that can grab those elusive contacts. Congratulations on your 45 contacts with the Elecraft KX3. I'm saving up for one--this may take some time. Currently, I'm using a Yaesu FT-7 and a Ten-Tec Scout 555 for most of my low-power work. Aloha from the Hamakua Coast of Hawaii Island. Russ (KH6JRM).

  2. Re-posting this for Marc W4MPS (for some reason it didn't show up when he posted this):
    Another fun event. I was hoping band conditions would perk up, but, much
    like those NJ Skeeters, condx sucked. There were some great exceptions
    though, when in a short spurt of upward QSB, I was able to log a few Q's
    with our Rocky Mountain brethren. The big skeeter-swatter himself KX0R
    was heard consistently all afternoon. He must have been using his
    patented 26 element wire "buzz beam" again- HI. Great to work the
    Skeeter Master W2LJ on 40 and 20 with big signals on both. I never
    heard one peep on 15 and didn't have enough wire for 80, but I know a
    few of our fellow KnightLites were active here in the Tar Heel state. I
    operated from a nice spot in a field next to Lake Crabtree near Raleigh,
    although next time I'll look for a spot with some shade (severe
    meltation). I operated my KX3 with a 4.6 Ah LiFePO4 battery which, so
    far, has been a consistently reliable power source. Today's antenna was
    my trusty segmented dipole (40/30/20) set up as an inverted vee on a 20
    foot extendable center pole. That's the same setup I used recently in
    EI-land. Weighs next to nothing and works FB. Many thanks to Larry and
    the NJQRP gang for sponsoring the Skeeter Hunt. I look forward to it
    every year. Photo on the way to Larry via e-mail.
    Marc, W4MPS

  3. As always, I had a great time participating in this year's Skeeter Hunt. It is by far my favorite QRP activity and Larry, W2LJ and the NJQRP Group do a fantastic job getting it going each year. Thanks again Larry for a job well done. It was great working both you and Marc, W4MPS, during SH. Both of you are great CW Operators. Can't wait until next year!