Posts Tagged ‘FYBO’

If you don’t like the weather in NJ

just wait five minutes, as the "borrowed" old saying goes! I guess that holds for long range forecasts, too.

I've been keeping an eye on the long range weather forecast via WeatherUnderground for this coming Saturday - FYBO day.

A couple of days ago, they were calling for a wet weekend. This morning, they were calling for an ice storm in the morning with some showers in the afternoon after a warm up.

NOW it's supposed to be "just" a cloudy day with just a chance of showers. Meanwhile, last night on the news, the local weather prognosticator was calling for a possible Nor'Easter this weekend. It's enough to make your head spin!

I was hoping to go up to Washington Rock State Park for a couple of hours. That's my favorite place to operate portable from - plenty pf picnic benches and a plethora of tall trees. But with this ambiguous and ever changing forecast, I got the bright idea to go to Putnam Park in town, instead. That's where SPARC has done JOTA the past few years, and there's a covered pavilion there. Should it begin to precipitate, at least I'll be dry. The trees are not as tall; but they're tall enough for me to launch the PAR ENDFEDZ into.

At 62, I'm no young buck and no spring chicken. I don't need a case of pneumonia or bronchitis. No QRP contest is worth that! But I can dress for the cold, as long as I can stay dry.

Stay tuned!

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

Speaking of FYBO

here's a video of Steve WG0AT and Frank K0JQZ's operation in balmy Colorado last weekend. Frank mentions this is Steve's back yard - VERY NICE back yard!

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

All in all – a good day!

There were a lot of things to get done before playing in FYBO, and (channelling Yoda) get them done I did. Believe it or not, my FYBO operation was from the street in front of our house. I live on a relatively quiet side street, so there was no danger of being hit by a car or something like that. I opened up the hatch of the Jeep, just like I do at work, and set up my nylon camping chair and used the "trunk" of my Jeep as an operating table. My antenna was the Buddistick/magmount combo on the roof . I'm sure the neighbors were staring - wondering, "What the heck is he doing now? And what is that tall stick poking up from his car roof?" "And why is our dishwasher going crazy - I'll bet it's him!"

As I set up it was flurrying slightly and the temp was 35F (1C). And then it happened. I tried tuning up the KX3 and couldn't get a decent match. Of course these things always happen at the worst time! Calmly, I took the Buddistick off the roof and inspected it - no problems there. Then the magmount - AHA!  Where the coax meets magmount, the dielectric foam surrounding the center conductor wire cracked open (from the cold, I guess, because I keep it in the trunk when not in use). The shield was ever so slightly touching the center conductor and was making for a bad situation. A quick trip to the basement shack was in order. I cut the coax back, soldered on two new ring terminals and put everything back together. The KX3 was a happy camper with a 1:1 match.

In about two hours of operating, here's my summary:

Team Polar Bear
Field - Yes
Category - Single Op
Alternative Power - No (Batteries- Mains charged)
Lowest Temperature - 35
QRPp - No
Final Score - 7780 points

    20      15       12          0
    14      10         8         1
TOTAL:  24       20        1

Score - (24X20) (X4 Temp multiplier) (X4 Field Multiplier) +100 =7780

15 Meters was pleasantly active, affording me 10 of my 24 QSOs. 20 Meters was also busy but noisier, with some TN QSO Party stations and some SOTA stations thrown into the mix. I also was contacted by an SKCC station - I guess they have something going on this weekend, as well as one DX station - G4OBC. I tuned around 40 Meters at the end of my operating time, but heard no FYBOers.

There was no wind to speak of, so it actually didn't feel that bad outside.  I think the temperature reached a max of 38F (3C) while I was out. I was comfortable, except that my hands were cold, as I really couldn't send Morse while wearing heavy Winter gloves. And another discovery - the older you get, the more bathroom breaks you need when it's cold!  Too much information? Sorry!

Now, if that wasn't enough - my FYBO day was made even better by finally working K1N with 5 Watts. YES!!! I came down to the shack this evening to enter my FYBO log into my Master Log. While doing that, I heard K1N on 20 Meters (haven't worked them there yet) and they were truly 599 loud.  I double checked my power setting to make sure I was at 5 Watts and I jumped into the pileup. In about somewhere between 5 to 10 calls, I finally heard my call come back to me. Sweet! My personal goal is now complete. I got K1N in the log for an ATNO, and I also got them in the log using QRP power.

It was a good QRP day. A VERY good QRP day!

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

Subscribe FREE to's
Amateur Radio Newsletter

We never share your e-mail address.

Do you like to write?
Interesting project to share?
Helpful tips and ideas for other hams?

Submit an article and we will review it for publication on!

Have a ham radio product or service?
Consider advertising on our site.

Are you a reporter covering ham radio?
Find ham radio experts for your story.

How to Set Up a Ham Radio Blog
Get started in less than 15 minutes!

  • Matt W1MST, Managing Editor

Sign up for our free
Amateur Radio Newsletter

Enter your e-mail address: