W4H Sticky

W4H - 2nd Anniversary of the 470 Amateur Radio Group
Start Date: November 1, 2009
End Date: November 15, 2009
Frequencies:Voice - 24.450, 14.260, 7.260, 3.860
PSK31 - 14.070, 7.070.
QSL Info: Note the amateur's name and send QSL to the call that is working the W4H event. For example if you work me as W4H I will also give you my home call and tell you to QSL to me AJ4IJ.
More Info: The 470 Amateur Radio Group website

Sunday, February 22, 2009

25 More to Go!

It was about time I'd done this. Here's my updated WAS map:

Click on Pic for Larger Version

I've actually contacted 38 states, but you know how it goes trying to get confirmation.

I did contact Montana the other day (that's one I find to be one of the hardest to get). I haven't sent a card yet, but maybe soon I'll get around to it and get confirmation back! *smile*

Sunday, February 15, 2009

I Got 'Em!..... K5D

Wooooo Hooooo!! I worked K5D Desecheo Island last night (well, properly, this morning) on 20m on 14.226. Band conditions seemed better than I expected, and I was able to get them on 100w.

*Doing the Desecheo Dance*

Ashby was able to get them as well, as they were listening up on 14.226 in the general portion. I was very excited that she was able to work them. She got them on her first try. I'd been calling for 2 days. Way to go, Ashby!

Tim got them, too, as well as a lot of our local friends. Congrats to everyone!

If you haven't worked them yet, don't give up!! Keep trying. They'll be there until Feb-26.

For more information... visit the K5D website here.

2009 PSK31 Valentine Sprint and More....

I had a great deal of fun working the 2009 PSK31 Valentine Sprint hosted by the PODXS 070 Club. The RTTY contest this past weekend kind of interfered, but I was able to log 44 contacts, and that's pretty good for me.

I don't typically contest, and I know I won't win... but it was fun nonetheless, and gave me something to do. I kinda like the little short sprints. I don't have the focusing qualities for the 30+ hour contests.

I also logged a few other PSK31 contacts not related to the sprint. I got the Canary Islands yesterday, EA8CLX, and Belgium, ON4LJA... all running 50w.

Friday, I worked some phone. Besides hollering at K5D all day, I worked two overseas special events: OL2009FIS - The World Ski Championship S.E. in Czech Republic and GB5OBH - Special Event in England commemorating the death of Buddy Holly. I also worked OZ5BF in Denmark -- What a nice OM! -- and S52QM in Slovenia.

As you can see... I'm having lots of fun with our new HF setup over here!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

It has been brought to my attention that my use of the term 'XOM' may have some, well, buffaloed. Although I have heard this term used once before (by a guy that I spoke with forever ago), I too questioned it's use. Was this proper Ham Radio terminology? And since when did that really matter to me?? *You are reading the blog of a girl who hollers "CQ on the 20!"*

Well, let me try to explain myself. See, it all goes back to the term XYL. When I was first becoming familiar with this term, I Googled it. After extensive Google research *ha*, I found that there was NO explanation behind why a Young Lady (YL) ceases to be young once she is married, no matter what her age really is. Now, I realize that this was probably and originally constructed this way as to not offend any ladies by calling them Old... but I think they *whoever "they" are* should have further defined XYL.

See, marriage can do some crazy things to people. Despite finding yourself madly in love, marriage comes with sacrifices. Those of us who are married know about these, which may include but is not limited to: throwing away all your dreams and (God bless them) sometimes the hobby. I wonder if walking down that aisle did not age me by 20 years automatically, and therefore I embrace the term XYL with pride. After all my old man has put me through, I'm surprised I'm not SK. :D

So, logically, if marriage takes away the youth of a lady, then it must take away something from a man. Hence the XOM. Some of you may ask... What is there after Old? Does that make them Dead? Well, I'll leave that up to your imagination. But, I can guarantee one thing. I am not married to a ghost. Maybe a zombie, but not a ghost.


PS.... If the above grammatically correct title has you buffaloed, try this: THE buffalo FROM Buffalo WHO ARE buffaloed BY buffalo FROM Buffalo ALSO buffalo THE buffalo FROM Buffalo. And if that doesn't work, visit here.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

A Task Half Done

It's crazy. I bought my daughter a "magic wand" for Christmas. It was expensive, for a piece of plastic shaped like a stick, but it was something she has begged for since she became obsessed with Harry Potter nearly three years ago. Today was the first day I really wished that the wand actually worked. It would have been nice to have shaken a wand, twitched a nose, or said a few words that weren't explicatives and the new multi-band dipole would have been stretched safely between two trees with no effort nor obstructions.

Unfortunately, that's not the way the world works, even though we'd all prefer it that way. Of course, without our sweat and hardships, we probably wouldn't appreciate a "job well done". Well, this job is, at the moment, a Job Half Done. *Although if I were a more "glass half full" type person, then it'd probably be three quarters of the way done* (If you came here for optimism, turn around and leave. Please visit my XOM's blog, which is much nicer in that category :D)

I guess we did learn a few things today. The Murphy's Laws of Putting up a Dipole:

1. No matter how much you plan, hope and pray, the wind will always top 20mph on 'Put-Up-Your-Antenna' Day.

2. Always have a backup plan. You will be defeated by something. In our case, the pine tree kicked our rears... Royally.

3. If you have a wooded area, the "straight shot" will always be through the saw briars. I was the lucky candidate to walk through it today. My arms, legs, and torso brandish the evidence to prove this.

4. Cutting down a tree that is in the way is not a great idea. You may successfully cut it down, but it will fall on your antenna, no matter how hard you try to get it to fall otherwise.

5. There is never an existing hole big enough for a PL-259. Solder it on AFTER you run the coax through an existing hole.

I'm sure there are more things that we learned today, but at this point (2:30am), I'm exhausted and tired of thinking about it. I'm just glad it works as well as it does, and I'm even more happy that it is up and this excursion is over.......... at least for today.

Until next time... Happy DX'ing!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Scoop Du Jour

Wow, I need to catch up here. The blog is running away faster than I can keep up!

Really, I've just been lazy. No, really! I have no excuse, except that I've let everything go far too long. Not just this blog, but just about everything. Graduating after nearly 7 years of school will do that to a person. Now, it's time for me to get my head back in the game. I hope that's a possibility!

I have news about Ashby. But before I do... We finally got our HF radio hooked up over here. It's been sitting at dad's since we bought it. Not collecting dust or anything though. He put it to good use while he had it. Probably misses it, to tell the truth, since his has some anomalous sound problem. Even baffled the Icom guy, but hopefully they'll figure it out soon enough.

We've been working on getting the antenna up. Failed miserably last weekend. I didn't fail... I was in the house, where the smart people go when boys play with bows, arrows, fishing reals, and 80 foot trees. *SMILE* Gladly, they didn't spear themselves... Really! Not even once! I know you still think I'm lying. Hey, it's still possible though. There is an arrow still in my pine tree, dangling dangerously with the slightest of every breeze. It'll be my luck, I just know it. I'll be working in the front flower garden or something, when some evil wind blows the arrow straight through my eye socket. Ewww, that's gross. Carrying on.

This weekend is supposed to bring very nice weather. *psst... always revert to the weather when topics run a little too wild* Maybe we can successfully get the antenna up!! I did go purchase a slingshot, some weights, and some better fishing line; although I'm not sure I'll be any safer around them with that.

Yes, I know... you want to hear the news about Ashby. Well, she won second place in the public speaking contest this past week. Her speech was about Amateur Radio, and she did very well! I was so proud of her. Too bad the "Sheep Boy" won first place. Shhh... don't repeat that!

Here's pictures of her, and a LINK to her speech, for those who would like to read it.

Scavenger Hunt Sticky

Thanks to all for helping me with the Scavenger Hunt!