I’ve had so much planned. So many things to work on and write about. So much that it’s created a bit of a mess in my workshop that needs to be looked through and organized.
If you’re wondering what’s been occupying my time, I’ll tell you. I decided to go back to school and get the degree that I abandoned over 30 years ago. We have a new grandson. Our first! And, KD2CHE’s little side business has been getting busy.
Now, with degree in hand, and my work schedule getting more routine, I will begin to attack the leaning tower of kits. Some of the work also has to do with my transistor radio collection, but I will refrain from posting that here.
Then, probably a much needed update to the Radio Kit Guide page.
–Neil – W2NDG
I now have 64 different sources listed.
Sorry it’s been so long since the last update.
Re-Adding: 4 State QRP Group which got lost in a previous edit (sorry guys!)
AE9RB (Peaberry SDR)
Hans Summers (Ultimate QRSS Kit)
Jackson Harbor Press
Third Planet Solar (HW8 add-ons)
Midnight Design (SDR Cube)
Lots of changes too! Too many to list. -NEW- items or changed items are marked as such. I also did a general cleanup. After all of the moving around between editors, and Blogger, and Word things were looking a bit messy. Hopefully the next version will be more of what I originally wanted and be more database style and searchable. I’m still verifying prices so they may not all be correct.
If you know of something that is missing please let me know in the comments.
Some of you might remember me talking about the return of Heathkit.
There has been a lot of mystery surrounding the status of Heathkit, as they popped up a couple of years ago and announced that they were returning. There was a survey posted online for a long time asking people what they wanted to see from a new Heathkit. The new Heathkit management hosted a Q and A session on Reddit speaking more about their plans to return. Then, nothing. No announcements, no news. There was brief mention in December when the folks at Adafruit (a company that supports the MAKER community) were briefly in touch with the new Heathkit, and were told that things are still progressing, and there will be no information on what the products will be until they are ready. All through this, I have been skeptical, as many people would be, since we have heard this story before.
Now, there are changes over at Heathkit.com. They are clearly gearing up for products, and support. They have even started an eBay store where they are selling parts, and some classic equipment.
Cross your fingers.
After living here in the new house since January, I haven’t had a lot of chances to use the radios, even though I now have a room for my hobby (shared, of course with KD2CHE’s sewing). The shack has been piled with things to sort through, requiring some digging and re-arranging to get to the Atlas 210X. A few days ago, I finally went through the pile and did some major organizing. I now have a nice work surface, and all of the radios set up and working (including a recent flea-market find, a snazzy FRG-7). Tonight after tuning around on 20 meters I answered a couple of calls. The second call was from 9K2UU in Kuwait. This contact is now my second-best distance since I got my license (about 6800 miles), and the best from home (the no 1 was Namibia from my 10 meter mobile here at the beach). Barrak gave me a 5-7, and he got a 5-9 from me. All of this with an old Atlas 210X, and a 35 foot end-fed sloper into a 9:1 UnUn. I’m happy with that.
I’m working on a major update for the kit guide. I’m finally alphabetizing the list, and including a directory of sources. I should have the new guide up by this weekend.
I have added a bunch of new vendors. 14 so far and counting. If you can think of any more, let me know at: W2NDG(at)RadioKitGuide(dot)com
The next big change will be getting the guide into a separate hosted site, and adding a files section, and a forum.
Big things are coming.
Click “Read The Rest of This Post” to read the current list of vendors.
(note: new vendors in the list (*) have not been added to the site as of yet)
73 de Neil W2NDG
Yesterday, on a day off from work, I had to head up to the Huntington Village post office to pick up a kit I ordered from China. Why my post office is a 15 minute drive (in traffic) from my home when there’s a beautiful, brand new post office, with a large self-service lobby half a mile from me is a story for another day. As-is the reason why my postal carrier is too lazy to actually leave me notices that I have a package, or ring the bell and ask for a signature. I retrieved the kit, and decided that since I was a few minutes from the North Shore, I would try for some 10 Meter mobile contacts from the beach. I headed to Fleets Cove Beach.
I plunked the mag mount to the old Buick, and plugged in my HTX-10. The band was busy, as it has been lately, but to the point where my 25 watts wasn’t getting through a lot of the pileups. One operator heard me and I logged that contact with Croatia. Not bad, but still disappointing, considering how busy it was. I was beginning to get discouraged, and thinking about calling it a day when I twirled the dial up to the AM portion of the band (29 MHz). Now, keep in mind that my HTX-10 only puts out about 7 Watts AM, and my antenna is tuned for 28.4. I had a nice QSO with M5AFD in Shropshire England. He was surprised at how well I was coming in, but there were a few deep fades. He also complimented me on the audio on the old mobile, and suggested that it would be close to optimal with a punchier mic. I may do just that.
England. AM. 7 Watts. WOW