Monday, September 23, 2019

Autumnal Equinox

A day that I always dread.

Today is the first day of Autumn in the Northern hemisphere - the Vernal Equinox in the Southern hemisphere. Happy Spring to all of you South of the Equator!

Personally, the first day of Autumn is heralded by just about everyone I know, as they look forward to cool, crisp temperatures, the pretty colors of changing trees, and the change of seasons.

For me, Autumn means less daylight and the fact that Winter follows. Looking for the silver lining, at least 160 and 80 Meter band conditions will get better as the season progresses. Always have to look at the bright side, right?

I confess was remiss in my blogging duties. I failed to mention the NJ QSO Party was this past Saturday. I did not get the chance to participate as I had too many house chores to accomplish. After doing those, I was too pooped to pop.  On Saturday there was also a Scouting event in town, which would have been a good opportunity to once again "show off" Amateur Radio to the local Scout troops. My chores precluded that. too.

However, on Saturday, October 5th, the South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club will be participating in "The Jersey Jam" which is a gathering of several hundred Scouts in Northern New Jersey at Waterloo Village, which is not all that far away from the Delaware Water Gap. We're supposed to be there, demonstrating the hobby from about 9:00 Am until 5:00 PM that day. Travel time is about an hour each way, so that will be a long day - no time for house chores that day!  Coincidentally, the FISTS Fall Slow Speed Sprint and the SKCC QSO Party are that day, so maybe I'll be able to log a lot of CW activity while explaining to the Scouts what's going on. Morse Code always seems to be a big draw.

Two weeks later is JOTA. Once again, we're going to be set up in a local park in town. Hopefully, we'll have some Scouts drop by this year and make some contacts. :Last year, all we ended up doing was providing contacts to other sites that had Scouts on the radio. That was fun, but not as fulfilling as having local Scouts drop by our site. We need to do a better job advertising this and getting the information out. Need to speak with our PIO about this - we need to get this into the two local news outlets.

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

Friday, September 20, 2019

Another new QRP Field Friendly radio

The Lab599 TX-500, which is supposed to be available soon - $700 price range (which ain't bad, at all).

A VERY nice looking, sleek radio.  For the details, you can visit the Website by clicking here.

And of course, the comments on the e-mail reflectors are all about how this radio will be the death of the KX3. I guess life is tough when you're Top Dog.  But think about it for a second ....... not only did Wayne and Eric usher in an excellent radio when they designed and birthed the KX3, they ushered in a veritable wave of competitors trying to knock them off the Top Shelf.

This kind of competition is a good thing.  I don't think we've ever had the realm of possible portable QRP radio to choose from like we have today, and we're the direct beneficiaries of that. In addition, I don't think that any of these competitors have brought forth anything but high quality products. I don't think there's a slouch among them; and that's the market forces in action, once again.

So not only did Wayne and Eric kickstart the industry on into a design frenzy, but those same market forces will probably also spur Elecraft on to offer a KX4 someday that may change the market, once again.

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

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Sad change to the blogroll

Sadly, I got the following message from Jeff KE9V this morning:

I'm not sure what's behind this, but I hope that this is temporary and/or that Jeff reconsiders. We may not always share the same opinion on things; but he is one of the finest writers among the ranks of Amateur Radio operators that I know. His absence would be a loss for us all.

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

Wednesday, September 18, 2019


As seen on eBay:

I had a set of Palm paddles.  They did not look like that - AND they came from Germany, not China.

I know that Palm has since gone out of business, but seriously - using their name like this smacks of the unethical in my book. If you want to say, "Based on the Palm Design" - I suppose that's acceptable, but don't advertise this so that someone who doesn't know any better might be fooled into thinking they're buying the genuine article.

From what I hear from Bruna Begali on Facebook, there are a Chinese manufacturer or two who have "borrowed" the Begali design for their keys. If you're going to shell out bucks, make sure you're getting the real deal and not a counterfeit. Yes ....... a counterfeit.


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

Monday, September 16, 2019

2019 NJQRP Skeeter Hunt Scoreboard is ready to view!

Congratulations to:

AB9CA - First Place Overall - Top Indiana Finish
N3AQC - Second Place Overall - Top Pennsylvania Finish
NN9K - Third Place Overall - Top Illinois Finish
NK9G - Fourth Place Overall - Top Wisconsin Finish
N0SS - Fifth Place Overall - Top Missouri Finish

To view the complete scoreboard, you can click here.

Thanks to everyone who participated and to all who sent in a log submission and soapbox comments. There were so many soapbox comments submitted, that it's going to take me a bit to get them published.  So please bear with me.

Again, the NJQRP Skeeter Hunt is a success because of YOU. All you fine QRP ops have made this event what it is. Also, much gratitude to the NJQRP Club for sponsoring this event.

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

Friday, September 13, 2019

Some Friday jocularity

Hope you all have a good weekend!  I hope to get the Skeeter Hunt scoreboard posted this weekend, so stay tuned!

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