Monday, February 24, 2020

Quiet weekend

Although it was a busy weekend "civilian world-wise". it was quiet Ham Radio world-wise with two exceptions.

Saturday, the New Providence Amateur Radio Club held it's annual auction. This was the first time I ever attended. I went with the prospect of just hanging out with friends, and ended up coming home with an unexpected purchase.

John N2DV, Tim AB2ZK, Dave KD2FSI, Chris N0CC and Marty WB2BEW were all there and it was nice to see them. The unexpected purchase was a Hallicrafters Sky Buddy receiver which I picked up for $40. It had the original instruction sheet with it as well as an extra tube.

Back in the day, when I was studying for my Novice exam, the Sky Buddy was always spoken of fondly as a Novice's "dream receiver" during the Golden Days of Amateur Radio. I'm also a sucker for Hallicrafters, for some reason. The price was decent, the rig appears to be in decent shape, so it got added to my collection. I'll take a photo of it and will post.

I was contented with the purchase; but what I really should have bidded on was an MFJ QRP rig that was there. I'm not sure of the model, but it was the one with interchangeable band modules. It looked brand new and obviously hadn't seen much use.  It ended up not selling, as there was no interest in it. I didn't bring a lot of cash (not expecting to bid on anything) and the Sky Buddy had tapped me out. Wasn't meant to be, I guess. I really don't need another small QRP radio anyway - but that begs the question. Can you have "too many"?

On Sunday, I got on the radio, in an attempt to work W3BBO when I was alerted to him being spotted on RBN on 40 Meters. Propagation was such that 40 Meters was not a viable path between Erie, PA and South Plainfield, NJ. I ended up going up to 17 Meters, out of curiosity, just to see if the band was open. It was there that I heard ZW86LABRE in Brazil. They weren't very strong, but the band was dead otherwise. I sent out my call and worked them on the first try.

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

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