Sometimes, the most satisfying QSOs don’t seem to relate to distance.  I had a really nice rag chew tonight with John N3WT on 40 Meters.  The band was in real good shape, with hardly any background QRN.  John is only two states away, in Maryland; but yet he gifted me with one of the nicest chats I’ve had since the one with Terry W9UX last week. He was using his K1, and I was on (of course) my KX3.  We were both pumping 599 five Watt signals into the aether.

The discussion ranged from things Elecraft to things Flex Radio, antennas and radio problems. Our conversation lasted but a half hour; but it will be one that I will remember for a while to come.  When the CW just flows from your fingers and the copy is armchair, a QSO can be a thing of beauty.

I’ve also migrated back from Ham Radio Deluxe to N3FJP’s AC log.  Since Simon Brown sold the rights, and HRD will no longer be a free offering, it’s probably just a matter of time until the free version will no longer be supported.  I paid for AC Log years back, so I may as well use what I have already paid for.  And seriously, with HRD, I was only using the logging portion anyhow, so it’s not like I’m losing a lot of features that I never used anyway.  AC Log loads faster, since it’s a much simpler program – so it’s almost ready to go as soon as I am. Good thing I never threw away the e-mail with my registration number!

I was contemplating looking at the DX Lab suite of programs for a second time, but again, I think we’re looking at more than I need for my purposes.  All those bells and whistles are extremely nice; but if I don’t plan on using them, what’s the sense?  I don’t want to say that I would never be, but right now I’m just a dial twiddlin’ kind of guy.  I don’t envision being the kind of contesting guy who truly needs the ability to click a mouse and have the radio instantly jump to a frequency that’s on a computer screen.  To borrow a line from Seinfeld – “Not that there’s anything wrong with that”.  But it’s just not my speed.

This coming Saturday is the Raritan Valley Radio Club’s annual hamfest.  Like last year, I will probably be on parking lot duty.  It will be a long day, with arrival time set at about 5:00 AM.  Watching the 10:00 PM news for the long range forecast is so far calling for a partly cloudy, but dry Saturday with highs in the mid to upper 70s.

Oh well, time to hit the sack. I have to go downstairs and pop a couple Advil first.  I am feeling some minor aches and pains from all the yard work that I did this weekend.  Don’t want to be up all night with a twitchy back.

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

Larry Makoski, W2LJ, is a regular contributor to and writes from New Jersey, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

3 Responses to “Stuff”

  • KQ2RP:

    Larry, I may be mistaken, but I believe you can install only the elements of the DXLab Suite that you need/want, with the ability to add other elements later if you feel the need or your operating style changes.

  • ac7af:

    Rag chewing is the spirt of radio,seems we lost it arrl doesnt even do rag chewers award anymore what a pity

  • W2LJ:


    You are right, indeed. I could just download the logging portion and forget the rest. For whatever reason, the install wasn’t going well on my Netbook. After the first attempt, I purged the hard drive of all DXLab items and tried again, but no go. Both times, it wouldn’t allow me to import an ADIF file – something about the database not being found.

    Larry W2LJ

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