A Girl gets an Antenna and a Radio…

With the storm behind us, and the damage already done, the only thing left to do was GET THAT ANTENNA BACK UP! So, that’s what we did! I actually think we got it even higher this time getting it to the tippy top of one of the trees in the side yard…

What we set up in the Ham Shack was my new HF rig that’s going to eventually  make its way into my car… The Kenwood ts-480SAT. First of all I love that it has a detachable faceplate that will sit in a holder on the dash.

The screen and the controls are readable without a magnifying glass, and this model, the SAT, has an auto tuner, which makes it convenient while driving!

I’ve been on the air with it over the last 24 hours or so and it has already gotten compliments for it’s audio and signal, even running barefoot and with only a dipole antenna. But Kenwood is known for it’s great sound, and I’m very happy with it thus far. The reception is good, but I’ll have to get use to all the bells and whistles to get the sound a little nicer without external speakers. There is a speaker on the back of the faceplate, but I’m so use to the Elecraft K3 with the nice dual speakers that I’m going to have to adjust.

Something I really like is the microphone. It has a button control on top to tune into a frequency without having to go to the knob on the unit itself. VERY convenient while driving! Good for them making such a user friendly hand mic.

Well, this week the fallen trees get cut up and taken away along with one more tree that needs to go as well. Unfortunately that last tree has the other half of that inverted V our dipole is made up of, so we’ll be back in the side yard aiming high to get that side back up after it’s perch is chipped. Hopefully this will only be a blip in the grand scheme of things and there won’t be too much HF radio interruption. Other things to consider in the meantime are antenna’s for the car when the Kenwood finally makes its way to my Vue. Right now, Hamsticks are what we are aiming for- relatively inexpensive, easy to install, and easy to change. I’ll be going for 20, 17 and 75 meter sticks.

So what radio adventures have you been on lately? And what do you think about HF rigs for the car? Yes or no?

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

A Girl and Her Radio And NO ANTENNA…

 

Hello! Field Day is just around the corner, and we’ve been preparing our journey out of the ham shack and into the wilderness… or our backyard. What Field Day is really meant for is to have licensed Amateur Radio enthusiasts discover how to make contact with people under adverse operating conditions… how to get your equipment up and running in times of emergencies. A prime example of this was the disaster in Joplin, MO. I know an experienced amateur radio operator that went to Joplin to help, and his experience was invaluable in helping organize relief efforts.

Well, a storm went through here in Connecticut last night that proved to be more than my antenna could handle. One of the huge trees that we got our dipole antenna up in came down last night, along with branches from various other trees holding that same antenna up and we are now antennaless!

Fortunately the tree did not hit anyone or anything. It split in two, both halves landing in our side yard, with one half barely missing our shed. What this forces us to do is take the supplies we’ve been ordering for Field Day and learn how to use them to get back on the air NOW. We’ve got the ladder line, coax cable, insulators, a battery and a BRAND NEW RADIO! I just opened the box containing a Kenwood TS-480 SAT! This is eventually meant for my car, for some great DXing on the go, but I’m thinking it would be fun to use this as our Field Day radio now.

So, Field Day this year will be coming a little early for us, and I can’t wait! It’ll be great getting back on the air, but it’ll be great to try our hand at hooking and hanging everything up for a barebones operation. Are you preparing for Field Day? Any helpful suggestions? We’ll talk more about Field Day prep, getting back on the air and about that brand new Kenwood TS-480 SAT going into my car, but for now… 73’s! And if you hear me calling CQ, don’t hesitate to say hello!

Posted in amateur radio, Ham radio, Hobbies | 2 Comments

A Girl and “Her” Radio…

I thought this post should be about “The Girl’s” Radio

Here it is, My Radio… “My” is a little misleading. Here I have to give credit where credit is due… My Radio is actually my Ex’s Radio. He built it from a kit and it’s been a great little performer for him and now for me! What is it? It’s an Elecraft K3!

The Kit for the K3 was originally for a QRP radio with 10 watt output, but then he added a 100 watt amp. Next install was the automatic antenna tuner. Plus now the radio has 5 Roofing Filters, which are used for selective receiving. And just for fun we have a Short Wave Filter for SWL! There’s more on the wish list, but for now this is a great little set up. Great reception, and I’ve gotten compliments for the great audio too!

So there you have it! The Girl has a Elecraft K3! And I’m loving it! Being on the air is so much fun! Tell me though… what’s your rig? This blog is going to be about my adventures in Amateur Radio, but I’d love it if you’d leave a comment or two to let me know your adventures… or at least your thoughts about Amateur Radio!

73’s

Suzanne

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

A Girl gets her license…

Hello Everyone! I’m that Girl of A Girl and Her Radio. I thought it might be fun to blog about all the fun things I’m learning and experiencing in the the larger than life world of Amateur Radio. In April I earned my General license, which means the ability to talk! Actually talk more, because as a Tech Plus (yes, I actually had to learn morse code to pass my tech test many years ago) I was able to talk on 10 meters.

So, come on over and say hello. If you’re a YL amateur radio operator, I’d love to meet you because I understand that we are fewer in numbers than the guys!

I’ll say 73’s for now!

Suzanne

N1SUZ

Posted in amateur radio, Ham radio, Hobbies | Leave a comment