The radio shack has gotten so messy lately, that it felt like it was time to redo everything properly. Now when all equipment pretty much is the same regardless of contest it is easier to put cables etc more permanent. Priority #1 will be getting the remote up and running and the rest will have to take as long as it takes before everything is working to 100%. Position #1 and #2 (SO2R position) will be done when I have the support op fixed which will be a high priority now so its done before WPX SSB.
SM2XJP helped me all day so it went pretty well and part of the stuff is now done but still lots more to be done.
I also went out to remove some snow which had stuck to some guy wires.
Today and yesterday I got some help from SM2XJP and SM2LIY to get the 20m 5el CUE DEE monobander up in the air. The weather was very nice, a bit windy yesterday but otherwise it was very nice with just a few minus degrees. This tower is the WARC tower, which is supposed to hold the 12/17 duobander and also the 6m yagi. But since we did not get the 40m military tower up this year we decided to put the 5el mono in this one, making us a lot more flexible on 20m.
It has got an alfa spid rotor. These kind of towers are horrible to climb when you have a rotor in them, because you can barely get your feet in to stand properly. So its not a fun experience working in them. When me and SM2XJP were putting a connector on the RG-17 inside the house he said to me “Mike, did you remember to put the center connector in the 7/16 connector” and my response was something like “f**king s**t”. Eager to try the antenna that its working as it should I did a climb in total darkness with a headmounted flashlight which was actually quite nice. The SWR looks good over the whole band and tomorrow I will connect the cables for the rotor so I can get it rotating as well.
Except working the CQWW DX SSB contest I marked out the spot where the new 60m tower will be placed. The plan was to make quite wide room for the guy wires so that no trees would be able to fall over them. But when we started marking out the paths supposed to be cut we realized that not much would be left, so instead we just took all of it around the footprint of the 60m tower. That also makes us get a big room where we can lift towers from. If we would have done this by hand I think we would have been working for a LONG time, now this machine does it 2-3 days and I might even have some money leftover after the trees have been sold to the forest company. It hurts a bit though to do this, but i think it will look nice when the tower is in place and all branches has been removed.
I got to ride with him in the harvester too which was really cool, what a piece of machinery! Just amazing how efficient it is even though this is a quite small one it does a great job! I think I spent a couple of hours with him in that machine.
SM2NOG also came over with the 40m military tower with help from his brother. So now that tower is also in place. I saw some welding need to be done on a minor broken part of it but otherwise it looks great and ready to be put up. So now we just need to wait for the spring so we can continue this project.
And Zoli, I’m sorry but the trees had to go
I’ve been a bit sloppy with the updates lately, sorry for that but I will try to update more frequently now again. What has happened lately is that I have given up the hope of getting the military tower up this year, right now outside its snowing and the ground is so wet from all rain that it will not be possible to either make the foundation or get a crane in there. The house work this summer just took too long time, so hopefully next year in the spring we will continue the work of this tower and also make everything ready to put up the 60m tower next winter.
So SM2XJP came up with the good idea to finish the WARC tower installation this autumn instead, thus making it one less thing to do next year. So me and SM2XJP spent the weekend building a 7el yagi for 6m that I designed with 8m boom. The boom comes from an old TH6 that I made a bit longer. The antenna will be placed about 19.5-20m above ground in the WARC tower and we will move the WARC duobander as well from the 60m tower. Left to do on the 6m beam is installing a vertical boom support and add a coaxial cable with balun to it. Hopefully the SWR looks as it should. The WARC duobander need to be adjusted a bit to get the resonance at the right frequency but that is an easy task. I will also need to build antenna switches, one 1×6 switch that will be located up in the WARC tower and a 2×6 switch to be located in the house so that we can route the main radio in the shack or remote radio to either the regular antenna switch system or to the WARC tower. This to make avoid running such long cables out to the switch room.
In two weeks I will meet with a forest company doing some work on my neighbors land and since they are so close they will do the work making room on my land for the new 60m tower. That will save us A LOT of time and hopefully bring in some money for the project as well.
I’ve also been trying the remote out and it works so great. Thanks to Ojojoj Music AB, Remoterig and SG3P for making it possible. It is really, really fun to be able to control the station and work QSOs during the week days when I am up at the work QTH. Now only the tower rotation is left to do which will be a high priority during the autumn and winter.
SA2BZE also came by and worked some QSOs in SAC SSB with his own call (SJ2T), but propagation’s were really, really horrible. I heard that SK2T who are not far away from us had a few hours in the night which delivered 1q/h. Fun to work radio from SM2
I’ve also cleaned the yard up for the winter, which seem to have been just in time since it started to snow today. I doubt this snow will stay since its so early but if it does and you have stuff outside, its very easy to damage it during the winter when the tractor shovels the snow etc.