John Morgan had a constructive lunchtime. We have identified a mast suitable for the antenna that Rob is working toward obtaining. It won’t blow our budget, but both will need approval at our meeting on August 6th.
Monthly Archives: August 2015
At our last Work-Play session on August 12th, we tried to retune our 160 meter Off Center Fed (OCF) antenna.
We had been using it as our primary multi-band HF dipole antenna. It worked well on a number of bands: 80, 40, and 30 meters, portions of 17, 15, and 10 meters, and the upper half of the 160 meter band. We could not, however, tune our transceiver on the lower portion of 160 meters, including the CW portion, without using an extra antenna tuner. Now we have dedicated dipole antennas for most of those other bands. And so, led by the Station Operation Committee team, we decided to try to retune the 160 meter OCF, to make it usable on the rest of the 160 meter band.
Our first attempt was to change the lengths of the antenna wire at each end. We removed earlier extensions at the ends and soldered different lengths.
The antenna analyzer results looked good. That is, we had resonance now at a lower frequency on the 160 meter band. However, later testing with our rig showed we still had a high Standing Wave Ratio (SWR) with the rig grounded. Time for more Sherlocking.
I’ll start this post with the more mundane and work toward the amazing thing that I learned. DO NOT skip to the end to read about it now. Firstly, I found that Stephen (KK4IB) had dropped off the white board and winch lube.
So I was motivated to accomplish something myself.
The bolts attaching the thrust bearing could still be tightened a bit with the appropriate socket wrench. I didn’t bear down on them with the crescent wrench I was using. I hadn’t suffered a heat stroke, so I made use of the can of lubricant to grease the pulleys and gears on the tower and winch mechanism.
Before washing my hands and leaving I was taken aback by a miraculous happenstance. Instead of getting a large burst of water quickly followed by a less than useable flow, the water fountain was working the way it is supposed to. This was a repeatable process. So, long story short, the water fountain is working properly (knock on wood). Isn’t that amazing? We can cut back on our purchases of bottled water. If I’m really feeling cocky after work I might even take a green pad and some comet to it.
And today there was this.