Oh, I forgot to mention it, but I won a drawing for a Wolf River Coils Silver Bullet Mini. Bob Plank, KK4DIV, had a drawing to celebrate reaching 1000 YouTube subscribers. My name came out of the hat (literally!). Gonna have to do something mobile with it. Check out Bob’s channel … he’s got some interesting stuff.
This morning when I went out to the truck to leave for work at about 0530, it was in the low 30’s and I had a nice coating of ice on the windows. We didn’t even have a chance to do frost first … directly to ice! My trusty spray bottle with rubbing alcohol and water did the job, though. Take that, ice!!
I saw this somewhere (can’t remember where) and said to myself, “That can’t work very well.” Today I was in Lowes and picked up a 2-inch elbow to give it a try. Place it right above the speaker. Hey, it makes a big difference, especially on CW. It redirects the speaker audio towards the front. Well worth the $1.88 (+ tax) I paid for it.
You know times are bad when 20 Meters doesn’t have a single CW signal audible during a major contest weekend. I just tuned up there and couldn’t hear ANYTHING! NADA! Forty and eighty are really active … lots of contest activity.
I haven’t done any contesting this weekend. I just worked about 15 stations on FT8 with the new rig, and I did make a couple of QSOs to check out how it handles on CW. As far as SSB, I haven’t even taken the mic out of the box yet!
The IC-7300 is a SWEET rig to operate, but I’m still stumbling a bit with the controls. It’ll get better with familiarity.
I knew I shouldn’t have opened that email from HRO … I just knew it! But, of course, I did. That was the beginning of the end. There was that beautiful picture of an Icom IC-7300 staring at me … and at less than a thousand bucks. I deleted the email. but it didn’t work. It just ate at me and ate at me. I watched YouTube video after YouTube video, and they all weakened my resolve to be strong.
Finally, I gave in. I ordered the radio online and then drove up to the HRO at Woodbridge, VA the next day to pick it up. I got home and unboxed it and admired it. I had to clean up the shack a bit to fit it on the table … so long old faithful FT-450D. I think you’re due to be sold to a deserving ham.
I’ve only begun delving into the features of this radio, but I’m impressed so far. The amount of control you have over those features is great. I think this is going to be a great companion!
I did a bit of FT8 yesterday evening. I managed one contact on 80M and three on 15M. The other bands were sounding good, but I just couldn’t seem to connect. Not a real dense map either … nothing showing anywhere except North America, and one reception report in Venezuela.
I did have an equipment problem surface, though. My USB hub kept dropping out or resetting. Wiggling the USB-A connector at the laptop duplicated the problem. Over time, with connecting and disconnecting, the plug has gotten worn and is loose. At least, I hope it’s the plug and not the laptop socket that’s worn. I looked for a replacement cord, but the hub end is a USB-B connector … like you find on most printers … sort of a square plug, rather than a rectangular one. Ah well, Amazon Basics … should be here Friday. Love Amazon Prime! The old one is still usable … I just have to make sure I don’t wiggle the cord, though.
I’m looking forward to the loooong Thanksgiving holiday. Hopefully, conditions will improve a bit. I’ve been reading a bit about Olivia and want to give that a try. Maybe I’ll also have a chance to do some antenna experimenting, too. We’ll see.
Right now, I need to find a plumber. The kitchen sink decided to plug up on Thanksgiving eve, when the kitchen is a beehive of activity. Figures …