Posts Tagged ‘fun’
Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota. Devils Tower National Monument, Wyoming.
Friday, July 22nd – Toured Wind Cave. Once we entered the cave and started to descend, Emily was scared at first but then was ok. After the tour, the girls finished up their Junior Ranger books and received their badges for Wind Cave.
The day started getting hot. The expectation was temps into the upper 90s. I had gotten a prime parking spot in front of the Wind Cave Visitors Center which allowed me to connect to their wifi. I used the wifi connection to make reservations at the Devils Tower KOA. The heat made me want to camp at a location where we could make use of our air conditioner.
We left the Elk Mountain Campground around 1pm. Elk Mountain Campground is a good place to camp if the weather had been a bit more cooperative. I was disappointed in the lack of any substantial Ranger-led evening program.
It was a nice drive in a northeast direction through a national forest to I-90 where we were only on I-90 to go up one exit. Checked into Devils Tower KOA (located immediately outside the monument) and had some food across the street at the trading post. Ended up getting a pull-thru site next to another ham (KF5SA). He has an HF station mounted inside his trailer.
Quick trip up to the visitors center to get Junior Ranger books (from Ranger Erin Cahill). Attended evening program at the campground amphitheater which was blown out by bad weather into the picnic area.
There was a request for operators that I saw on Larry’s List. Larry’s List is an awesome resource for hams in the greater Kansas City area. Not just another email list-serv, but a truly valuable resource in understanding what is happening in the area. From community events, swap-n-shop, club meetings, weekly nets to nearby hamfests – Larry’s List is one stop shopping for everything you need to know about amateur radio in Kansas City.
I read about the opportunity to sign up for operator/logging slots during this weekends activation of WW1USA and thought it would be a neat opportunity.
Arriving about 10 minutes before my shift started, I was immediately directed to a position and asked to start logging for an operator working contacts on 20 meters. The brief instructions I received was to log the callsign, name, and state of the contact. I think I recognized the logging program as N3FJPs logging program for Windows. I had used this program before during Field Day 2009 with my dad, KD6EUG.
As I adjusted into the chair, my ear turned towards a speaker, my fingers pecking away entering callsigns… I noticed there were not any radios here! Each of the operating positions were laptops, using HRD to control a rig at a remote location. Pretty cool. As I believe it would have been fairly difficult to raise antennas on top of the museum and then route feedlines down to an operating room, the planners of this special event used internet connectivity. To be honest, as an operator, the fact that I was not in front of the rig was really not even apparent.
After twenty minutes, I slid into the operators chair and proceeded to work contacts for the next two hours. Again, the planning effort of this operation became evident when I saw a short script in front of me for calling CQ as well as providing answers on how calling stations could QSL the contact. When a station at the distant end asked for more information about the reason for the special event, I was handed another card which talked about commemorating the failed Gallipoli campaign.
I had a great time making contacts: stations all over Canada and the United States. What a fun time!
The Bees have swarmed and the Skeeters have been hunted. Now it time for a snack - The Peanut Power Sprint!
Everyone plays... Outdoors, indoors, lo/hi power, ... there is even a QRO category.
Sponsored by the North Georgia QRP Club (NoGaQrP), this sprint will be held on Sept. 27, 2015 from 4PM to 6PM EDT (Sept. 27 - 2000z to 2200z). Full rules are on the NoGaQrP website - nogaqrp.org Your QSO will be worth more if you have a PEANUT number; assigned NEW each year (see below).
The club is making this one different from most other QRP QSO events.
1. It is open to all amateurs at any power level. This is to attract some new folks to QRP while running their comfortable power - QRO (<100 watts pls) All are welcome and there is a QRO category. This is a FUN event. Not cut-throat!
2. It is a short sprint lasting only two hours; not tying up the entire afternoon. Although brief, run reasonable CW speeds for all to copy.
3. It starts late in the day (right after close of TX QSO party!) which will mean those on the west coast will begin at 1PM PDT, later than most contests.
4. There are categories for all situations - the prestigious category is the Peanut Power category - 1w CW or less, 2W PEP SSB or less - operating from the field! This is the GOOBER CLASS! SOTA anyone?
5. Plaques will be awarded for each of 5 category winners (minimum 3 entries).
6. Sprint encourages SSB as well as CW contacts. The exchange: RS(T), State/Province/Country(SPC) and your Peanut Number or Power. Call CQ NUT and have FUN!
7. Multipliers count each band/each mode. Work GA ( or any SPC) on 3 bands and 2 modes each = 6 multiplier. Puts emphasis on switching bands and modes during the event. Check SSB on the quarter hour. (SPC means State Province Country)
8. This will encourage activity on the 3 permitted bands - 40, 20, and 15M. There are suggested frequencies for each band/mode. Notice we are encouraging the now almost dead portion of 40M - 7061 khz and up.
9. Logs are not submitted - simply a score - but keep handy in case requested for verification. Watch website for results. There is an online score calculator. It's all on the website - nogaqrp.org
10. Work stations holding a Peanut Power Number (PPN) for 7 points. Stations worked who do not hold a PPN (will send their power) yield 3 points. Yes, QRO stations can request and receive a PPN. You do not declare your category until you decide to send in your entry. If you get halfway through and change your power, simply enter under a different category than you originally thought!
To request a PPN, send an email to NoGaNuT PeTe at [email protected] Requests for special numbers may no longer be accommodated. See the current list via the website. Or click here to see the latest list: http://byjimeny.com/PPN2015.pdf
Include the word PEANUT POWER NUMBER in the title of your request please.
Dang, those goobers are tasting great! http://tinyurl.com/olkg4za
NoGaNuT JiM, W4QO
This is a really fun Sprint/Operating Event. If you have EVER been intimidated by QRP Contesting, this is the contest for you!
I'd like to make a special request to all the Skeeters to please buzz on over to the NoGA site and request to become a peanut for an afternoon. I guarantee you will have a blast!
72 de Larry W2LJ - Peanut #43
QRP - When you care to send the very least!
One of the most interesting and unique artifacts from the early days of radio was not powered by batteries nor did it have any electronic components. I far as I can tell, Radio Shack never stocked it on their shelves and you can’t order it from Ham Radio Outlet.
From the 1969 ARRL “Radio Amateur’s Operating Manual”:
Every amateur should know and tremble at the history and origins of this fearsome instrument for punishment of amateurs who cultivate bad operating habits and who nourish and culture their meaner instincts on the air…
This is the Wouff Hong.
It was invented -or at any rate, discovered- by “The Old Man” himself, just as amateurs were getting back on the air after World War One. “The Old Man” (who later turned out to be Hiram Percy Maxim, W1AW, Co-founder and first president of ARRL) first heard the Wouff Hong described amid the howls and garble of QRM as he tuned across a band filled with signals which exemplified all the rotten operating practices then available to amateurs, considering the state of the art as they knew it. As amateur technology and ingenuity have advanced, we have discovered new and improved techniques of rotten operating, but we’re ahead of our story.
As The Old Man heard it, the Wouff Hong was being used on some hapless offender so effectively that he investigated. After further effort, “T.O.M.” was able to locate and identify a Wouff Hong. He wrote a number of QST articles about contemporary rotten operating practices and the use of the Wouff Hong to discipline the offenders.
Early in 1919, The Old Man wrote in QST “I am sending you a specimen of a real live Wouff Hong which came to light out here . . . Keep it in the editorial sanctum where you can lay hands on it quickly in an emergency.” The “specimen of a real live Wouff Hong” was presented to a meeting of the ARRL Board and QST reported later that “each face noticeably blanched when the awful Wouff Hong was . . . laid upon the table.” The Board voted that the Wouff Hong be framed and hung in the office of the Secretary of the League and there it remains to this day, a sobering influence on every visitor to League Headquarters who has ever swooshed a carrier across a crowded band.
The Old Man never prescribed the exact manner in which the Wouff Hong was to be used, but amateurs need only a little i
imagination to surmise how painful punishments were inflicted on those who stoop to liddish behavior on the air.
… and you can buy your very own miniature replica of the Wouff Hong in the form of a pin from ARRL. Now how cool is that?