After what has felt like an eternity, there’s finally a new QTH in my immediate future. I’ll finally have space for proper antennas (including beverages) — and I didn’t even have to leave FN32 to do it.

I’ve begun the somewhat arduous task of breaking down and boxing up the station. After twenty years in the same place, this is no trivial matter. That being the case, I may be posting less often over the next few months.

Once I get past the indignities of moving everything, I’ll be anxious to get back on the air. My target is to be competitive on 160 (ears too) by the Summer Stew. I’ll be sure to post station upgrades as they happen.



Lower 15m beam slipped

It’s been windy here the past few days and the lower 15m beam seems to have slipped a bit when I checked antennas this afternoon. Luckily, it’s restricted by the tower face and can’t go too far so the feedline appears to be alright.

Low 4L15 spun by the wind

Why does this sort of thing happen? Because the tower leg is too thin for the existing U-bolts on the boom-to-mast plate. I should have drilled the plate for smaller U-bolts before raising the antenna and fixing it to the tower, but it was a few days before CQWW and I had run out of time. There’s little sense in repairing at this point, as this antenna will be taken down with the rest in anticipation of moving to a suitable QTH. I will probably climb up and use rope to secure it, simply to prevent pinwheeling.

This antenna (and the one up top) are homemade 15m monobanders using parts from Cushcraft 4L10’s. I needed minor extension in the elements (only a few inches each) and I extended the boom. I’ll post full details later, in case anyone else wants to try this conversion. They sit on a telescoping tower that is controllable from the shack so we can adjust spacing using a ground-mounted winch. This has been an interesting platform for experiments in stack design; at some point I’ll compile what we’ve learned.