Categories
The Shack

QRP Mobile: a Shark HamStick installation

Moving has a way of causing you to revisit the recesses of your house. As I was digging around in the closet in my shack, I discovered an abandoned project. Last hamfest I went to, I acquired a mobile antenna mount and some Shark HamSticks for 20, 30, 40 and 80. I thought: rather than […]

Categories
Kits

5Watter Organic Transceiver Build Phase 3: Keyer and Keying Sections

This particular block should be straightforward. Basically, Diz’s kit ships with a programmed IC for using with a paddle. I believe that we will also be installing the keying switching transistors as well in this section. Components J4 – command button J5 – paddle jack J10 – speed control potentiometer (10k linear recommended; not included) […]

Categories
Kits

5Watter Organic Transceiver Build Phase 2: Audio Amplifier and AGC

Last time around, I built the power supply and had an absolute blast discovering why components were placed in their particular way. This time, I’ll be building up the audio amplifier section while performing research as I did in Phase 1. In general, this section revolves around placing an LM386, the requisite components that make […]

Categories
Kits

5Watter Organic Transceiver Build Phase 1: Power Supply

When building the 5Watter by W8DIZ, K7QO recommends building the power supply first as a troubleshooting measure. If the voltage regulators are installed and giving correct voltages, then you’ve eliminated one potential problem down the line. That, and it is difficult to determine whether everything else is working correctly if you can’t feed power to […]

Categories
Kits

A 5Watter Organic Transceiver Build: Introduction

When I first began my ham radio career some seven years ago, I was immediately drawn to kit building. One of the first kits that I discovered was the 1Watter, offered by Kits and Parts. I held off too long on getting that particular kit because of the small SMD parts and the lack of […]

Categories
SOTA

First SOTA 10 pointer: Poteau Mountain W5A/PT-001

After building up my new antenna, the QRPGuys Portable Multi Band End Fed Half Wave Antenna, I was hankering for an excuse to go try it out. After some plans fell through, I decided that today was the day for this antenna’s maiden voyage. Poteau Mountain is only an hour from my house and required […]

Categories
Operate Outside POTA

Dardanelle Rock Natural Area, K-7712

Dardanelle has always been the most happening place in Yell County. If you’ve read or seen True Grit, you’ll know a little about this particular locale. In days past, Dardanelle Rock was about as far up the river that steamboat traffic could travel. The rock outcropping gives some indication why; just below the water’s surface […]

Categories
Operate Outside POTA

Cheney State Park, K-2331

Two weekends ago, my wife and I went up to Kansas to visit her family and see our new niece. Since she is only days old, it doesn’t take much to tire her out. While my wife was spending time with her sisters and sleeping niece, I took the opportunity to go activate a park. […]

Categories
Operate Outside POTA

Ripgut Natural Prairie Area, K-8301

It’s becoming a new pastime of mine to break up long trips by getting out of the car and finding a park to activate along the way. A quick search revealed that Ripgut Prairie Natural Area wasn’t too far off the beaten path of I-49. At the end of some two miles of gravel, you’ll […]

Categories
Gear Modifications

MTR3b: Power Jack Modification

The Mountain Topper 3 Bander, or MTR3b, is a famous radio and for good reason. It’s a compact, lightweight radio that gets you on 20m, 30m, and 40m. It sips power yet has a 5W output. It has a nice receiver. It’s ruggedly built. However, the power jack didn’t match any other piece of equipment […]