Tuesday, June 15, 2021

First Day of Summer!

 This coming Sunday, June 20th will officially be the First Day of Summer, and that means it's time to sign up for your official 2021 NJQRP Skeeter Hunt number. Join in on Sunday, August 15th for fun in one of the more popular QRP Operating Events of the Summer.

All you have to do is send an e-mail to w2ljqrp@gmail.com, and you'll receive an answer back with your very own Skeeter number. No, it's not necessary to have one to participate, but it sure adds to the fun! PLEASE NOTE THAT NUMBER REQUESTS WILL NOT BE HONORED BEFORE JUNE 20TH!

For all the details about the Sprint - please visit https://www.qsl.net/w2lj/

And to see the Roster for those who have signed up so far, please visit https://drive.google.com/file/d/1p12ygiXqoQuv0-akSSoPSSeMrzuGzVzG/view?usp=sharing

I'm sure you'll recognize a lot of the names and calls there. This year's bonus qualifier - there are two! Either post a photo OF your setup to social media on the day of the Hunt OR spell out the word "SKEETER" using letters from the call signs of people you have worked. You can claim one bonus or the other; but not both. See the Skeeter Hunt Webpage for full details.

See you all on the air on Sunday, August 15th!

72 de Larry W2LJ - Skeeter # 13

QRP - When you care to send the very least!

Saturday, June 12, 2021

Impossible? Or am I hearing what I want to hear?

 Maybe this should be part of "The Things I Never Noticed Before" department.

Someone posted about this on Facebook the other day and I had to take a listen. Lalo Schifrin was tasked back in the 1960's with coming up for the opening theme song for the TV show "Mission Impossible". So the story goes that given the premise of the show, he thought it would be good spycraft to incorporate some Morse Code. So... if you listen to that opening beat ......dah dah, di dit ........  dah dah, di dit ....... dah dah, di dit.

You get "M" and "I" for "Mission Impossible".  The timing is not perfect, but the discerning ear should be able to make it out. How many times I have heard that theme song and never noticed it before!

There you go. Tell me what you hear. Is it just me, could it possibly just another example of "urban myth"? Am I just hearing what I want to hear or is it there?

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

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Getting ready for Field Day

 I took a little time today to test out my Jackite support for Field Day. The plan is to use the MFJ-1982LP, which will work all bands 80 through 10 Meters. It will be installed in the recommended Inverted Vee configuration with the Jackite used as the apex support. There will be nothing in the field to actually lash the Jackite to, so I'll e using the field support as recommended by Dave KD2FSI. I set things up in the back yard, just to get a feel for ease of set up and to test stability.

With the Jackite fully collapsed, I slid the PVC pipe over the top of it. Using heavy duty aluminum tent spikes and the CamJams, I was able to get the Jackite off the horizontal plane. Once vertical, I extended a few sections in order to get everything as truly vertical as I was able to - relying on judgment by eye. That was accomplished by tensioning the CamJams until all looked good. Once satisfied, I extended the Jackite to full height.

It's kind of breezy here today and it was nice to see that the CamJams, ropes and tent spikes provided enough tension and support where the was no sway due to the (at times) stiff breeze. I think this will be a very viable alternative for deploying the MFJ-1982LP in a situation where there are no trees available for apex support.

And as I promised a few days ago - here are the details for the Flying Pigs 20 Meter Walk For The Bacon, as supplied by Brian KB9BVN:

The inaugural "20m Walk for the Bacon" event will be held every month, on the third Wednesday and Thursday of the month, beginning June 16th.

This is a slow speed CW sprint event that lasts one hour.

Part 1 is Wednesday EVENING from 8PM to 9PM Eastern Daylight Time (00:00z to 02:00z) and operating frequency range is 14.061-14.065 with 14.063 being the hotspot. Speed limit is 13 wpm.

Part 2 is Thursday EVENING from 10PM to 11PM Eastern Daylight Time (02:00z to 03:00z) and operating frequency range is also 14.061 to 14.065 with 14.063 being the hotspot.

All logs are submitted on https://qrpcontest.com

1. Work only CW stations

2. Keep speed at a max of 13 WPM

3. Work same stations both nights for double points.

4. Exchange: RST, SPC, NAME, FP#

 Get an FP# at https://fpqrp.org - they're free but only take one.

Just a reminder, as this Sunday marks one week away from the official start of Summer 2021. Requests for 2021 Skeeter Hunt numbers will be honored as of Midnight Sunday June 20th and NOT before! Please wait until then to send your requests for Skeeter numbers to w2ljqrp@gmail.com. Please include with your requests your name and the state you intend to operate from. All requests for numbers will be answered via an e-mail with your number. If you do not get a confirming e-mail, that means I did not receive you request. Please try again. Hopefully, all requests will be answered within 24 hours from when you sent your e-mail.

72 de Larry W2LJ

QRP - When you care to send the very least!

Sunday, June 06, 2021

The bands were not the greatest today

 I set up for the Cookie Crumble Contest in the backyard this afternoon. I lashed the Jackite pole to a support and used the PAR ENDFEDZ 10-20-40. I set the KX3, battery and Bulldog key on the patio table under the umbrella.

After filling a stainless steel travel tumbler with ice cold water, I got down to business.

The bands I chose to operate on, 40 and 20 Meters, were less than stellar. I called CQ to no effect, so the stations I did work were gotten via "hunt and pounce". In all, I worked four Cookie stations and four POTA stations. I spent a little under 4 hours behind the key with frequent indoor breaks to cool off. The loudest station I heard all day was Rick NK9G on 20 Meters. When I first heard him and worked him, he was 559. But wouldn't you know it? ...... about an hour later, he was 599 +++++ !

The bright side of the day was that I found out there's a POTA Spotter app for Android phones. I downloaded it and sure enough, it led me to the four POTA station that I worked. I also discovered that I can set up CW POTA stations as a trigger on the HamAlert app as well. So any time a CW POTA station is spotted on the DX Clusters, it will trigger an SMS message and let me know the Call and Frequency. Neat!

72 de Larry W2LJ

QRP - When you care to send the very least!

Friday, June 04, 2021

A Couple of Things

 First - a reminder that the Cookie Crumble Contest is this Sunday and I am looking forward to it. Supposed to be a heat wave in process here in Central NJ. Sunny and in the 90s - perfect for sitting at the patio table with the umbrella up, the Jackite post in the backyard and the KX3 connected to the PAR ENDFEDZ.

Secondly, the Flying Pigs have started a new event. You're probably familiar with the Run For The Bacon, which occurs on the 3rd Sunday of every month. The new event is the Walk For The Bacon, which is designed with the newbie and slow speed CW Op in mind. The maximum code speed allowed is 13 WPM and even slower speeds are encouraged. The idea is to introduce the fun world of QRP Sprints to folks who are not comfortable with higher speed code.

It takes place each month on two separate nights. This month, it took place on the first Wednesday and Thursday of June. Wednesday evening was the "early" session, which started at 8 PM EDT and lasted an hour. The activity took place from 7.050 to 7.065 MHz with 7.060 MHz being the hot spot. Code speeds from 10-13 WPM and slower were encouraged.

The second "later" session was on Thursday night at 10:00 PM EDT. The frequency range was from 7.110 to 7.125 MHz with 7.123 MHz being the hot spot. Again, 10-13 WPM and slower speeds are encouraged.

There is talk of a 20 Meter session being added. I'll announce here when the July session will be announced. The inaugural session had over 30 participants and logs submitted. Hopefully. this will increase in the future. Stay tuned for news and details about upcoming Walks For The Bacon.

72 de Larry W2LJ

QRP - When you care to send the very least!