Monthly Archives: June 2012

Amp work continued

Yesterday and today I did some more work on the amplifier control. I milled new plates for the stepper motors and gears, I milled a D shaped hole in one of the gears and I assembled everything and tested it together with the rack unit which contains the electronics. It all worked well after a few changes in the software. So now during some rainy day I will attach it all to the amplifier and test if it works well. If not I’ll fix it 😉

I also made three plates made out of stainless steel which will be used to attach the lightning protection to the tower. Today everything is connected below the base bearing but I am afraid that if I get a direct hit on the tower I might weld the bearing which would mean lots of problems. These new plates will instead be attached above the bearing to the legs of the tower and are made out of stainless steel since this works well with both galvanized steel and copper.

More house work

Some work has been done lately but I’ve been too tired to update the website, sorry for that.

I got some help from SM2XLL which did speed up the insulation process by quite a lot and last week SM3JLA spent four days at the QTH helping me and we got quite a lot done. SM2JDU has also come by with lots of cables. Lots of jumper cables from RG-217 and also about 90m of 7/8″ cables. Thank you very much Ulf!

I’ll try to be better at updating the website.

House work

I’ve been a bit lazy on updating lately, sorry for that. I will try to improve!

Anyway, what has happened lately has mainly involved various work on the house. I ripped out the floor in the basement which SM2LIY burned up at once so we didn’t need to have it lying around. It looks good underneath, so now I will make a concrete floor instead since having organic materials in a basement is not a good idea if I ever get another flooding or other moisture related problems. The insurance company were kind to me, so the money I get will easily cover the cost to fix the room plus maybe also fix the actual problem which caused the flooding in the first place.

I also did lots of work on the house and managed to get one side of the house redone with more insulation. Currently there is about 20-30mm of insulation in the wall. On newly built houses in Sweden they recommend having 300mm in the walls. I am adding 70+120 so I will have a insulation thickness of 190mm in the walls, which should lower my heating costs by a lot. I have never had problems heating up the place with the two fireplaces when I am there, but the energy cost for having 8C inside when I am away, have been way too high. So these new walls plus the extra insulation on the roof which I added last year, should bring the heating costs down by A LOT. Only thing that my girlfriend is worried about is that she will not be able to have the fireplace going as much as before 😉

This house must be one of the early houses that they build with modules. And because of this everything looks a bit funny so I am forced to cut pieces out of the 70mm thick insulation and stuffing it in all pockets which are not standard sizes and also cut the 70mm insulation in half at places where there is wood. However, since the house is built the way it is, the new 5″ wood structure is creating an air pocket between the old wood and the new, which I fill with insulation making it very good since wood would otherwise transfer more of the cold outside into the house. So I believe the result will be great!

I am also doing work on improving my lightning protection at the station. Currently I disconnect all antennas when I am not there, but I don’t want to do this since its easy to forget something plus its starting to be A LOT of coaxes. So my plan is to use all my old RG-213 coax which I have “thrown” in a scrap pile since its water/moisture damaged and peel the insulating material away and put this down as radials for the 60m tower. I plan to put down as many as I can with a length of about 20m around and some longer and with some of them having rods driven down in the ground. This will be done both at the base and at the guy wire points. I will not put as much down on the smaller towers since the risk of them getting hit should be very reduced with the big tower grounded well. Also I am going to dig the coaxes which lead from the 60m tower to the barn down into the ground plus add grounding wires running between the house<->sw room, sw room <-> 60m tower which will be very low impedance. I am also going to dig down a ground wire around the house which will be used to attach the planned farradays cage (since I am redoing the panel of the house I am adding chicken wire under the panels).

However, I have run into a problem. On the last picture below you can see two different ground path choices and I can’t decide which one to chose. PATH 1 would mean that I run the ground wire under the ground outside while the option of PATH 2 would be run inside along the coaxes leading up to the shack. Everything will be grounded at that entry point into the house. Which option would you chose? I think PATH 2 is the way to go, since PATH 1 would create a ground loop together with the coaxes.