Last week during the big St. Patrick's day solar eruption/CME impact I (with the help of the radio gods) managed to work Roy VK6MV in Western Australia. (A video of Roy working QRP pedestrian mobile stations in the UK appears above.) Could it have been that that miraculous contact was ALSO my first ever homebrew SSB to homebrew SSB QSO? I e-mailed Roy to find out. Alas, it was not. But OM Roy sent some interesting info on his station and especially his antenna. Excerpts from his e-mail:
Thanks for the qso and the email. yes another 'fadeout' but we have had many over the years haven't we ? Things have changed a lot since 1963 when I had my first license as G3SML. We came to Aus in 1977 with 3 sons and now have 24 Grandies 13 Grandchildren; 11 Great Grandchildren.
I liked the early Plessey IC's when they came out ~ Carry on with home brew and get that personal enjoyment out of it, it gives you a boost I am sure. NO I was not on the home brew I was on the Icom IC740 which I bought about 5 years ago at the WA Hamfest it had a fault of jumping to different frequencies, etc. I could not find its intermittent fault at all, but on the internet a 'W' ham in your country posted the same fault with explanations etc, and it cured it,
So I was on that Rig + a home brew linear pair of old 813's in Grounded Grid and a Voltage doubler for the + 2 kv, I could not get the smoothing caps for that voltage so got hold of 3 metal canned ones 800 volt, then got some plastic drain pipe to insulate the cans from ground & then put them all in series with equalising resistors, and it worked. Yes I was on the rhombic ~ amazing antenna for a fixed point to point contacts ~ why a rhombic you may ask well when in the Uk I used to work VK2NN [and others] Tom with his farm of rhombics his setup much larger, and I thought one day I would love to put one up. Eventually with our moving to Aus' then came down here with its 8+ acres the opportunity led itself to put one up, and as I used to work into Europe/UK a lot that direction picked. first I put one up a bigger one than now, but it did not work that good. Moral the longer you go the higher it needs to be So a smaller version tried using the contours of the land at a height above sea level of 1260 feet asl helps. Using 12 gauge usa hard drawn copper wire I needed winches and turnbuckles etc to pull it up, one end is on the 60 ft tower, the others on assorted Wooden Poles + The termination R for the rhombic is a 3 element TH3 Tribander ~ think of it why waste power into a whopper of a Resistor ~ this is not my idea but came from ~ Nano VK6UN why not connect it to another antenna with how to do it came from now SK Les Moxon G6XN a clever man how to make a balun out of old ferrite rods from transistor radios, Will close now my half a dozen lines of text are expanding to much
In response to popular demand, "SolderSmoke -- Global Adventures in Wireless Electronics" is now available as an e-book for Amazon's Kindle.
Here's the site:
For the print version:
For shipping from a printer in the U.S. (probably better for N. American buyers) Click here: SolderSmoke USA Version
For shipping from a printer in the UK, Spain, or the USA (probably better for UK and other European buyers)
Click here: SolderSmoke EU Version
The two versions are identical, except for a minor difference in the paper used. That's why the prices are a bit different.
Bill's OTHER Book (Warning: Not About Radio)
Click on the image to learn more
W4HBK's QRSS Grabber: The Amazing Pensacola Snapper (Live!)