As Field Day approaches, we’ll be taking many long pieces of cable – coax, extension cords, network cables, even guy ropes – out into the field and setting them up for our annual not-a-contest emergency exercise. Each year, many hams undoubtedly find that the cables they coiled up after last year’s Field Day are a twisted, tangled mess. Some end up broken, frayed or not working. It’s a frustration, for sure, and much can be avoided if the cables are coiled up the right way.
Unless your cable is on reels (either motorized or hand-crank), you’re probably coiling cables by hand. The most expedient method is often to use your forearm as a makeshift reel, coiling the cable between your palm and your elbow. The problem with this approach Continue reading “Cable coiling the right way”
This post has nothing to do with ham radio but it’s an electronics project that may be of interest.
We bought a new car that turns out to be longer than the one we traded in, and parking it in our garage could be a potential problem (for both the car and the garage door) if it isn’t pulled in far enough. I wanted a better way to tell when the car was in far enough without using a sonar-based parking light (which I’ve found to be somewhat unreliable) or the old standby, hanging a tennis ball from the ceiling. I wanted a sensor to determine when the back edge of the car was past the garage door, and an indicator to tell when all is clear. Continue reading “Garage Parking Assist Sensor”
My first antenna as a Novice in the late sixties was a 40-meter dipole strung up in our back yard between my bedroom window and a surplus Signal Corps wooden pole that my dad bought at Silverstine’s. It was fed with RG-58 cable, soldered to the two wires across a white ceramic insulator. I probably still have the insulator somewhere, though the wire and coax has long since been discarded. It was an adequate performer and it even worked on 15 meters, but I wanted something a little more versatile. I had an 80-meter crystal, after all.
Despite the warnings from the older hams in the club about a vertical being “equally bad in all directions,” I saw an ad for the World Radio Laboratories WVG Mark 2 vertical. Continue reading “World Radio Labs WVG-MK2 Vertical Antenna”
The latest project in the NF8M station is The Phaser. No, not the Star Wars kind. This one is a single-board phasing SSB transceiver that puts out about 4 watts and is designed for digital modes. It’s the brainchild of Dave, K1SWL and George, N2APB. (You may recall George and Milt W8NUE are the designers of the NUE-PSK standalone RTTY and PSK31 terminal. I have one of the early units and it’s a lot of fun!) Continue reading “The Phaser”
Used and decommissioned Motorola gear is a common sight at swap & shops and ham flea markets. And hams are always in need of one more 12 volt power supply to run station equipment or accessories.
At the intersection of those two truths is the Motorola HPA3000A power supply. Continue reading “Motorola HPN3000A power supply modification”