Jun 222013

Having recently sold my Yaesu FT-817ND and moved to a new QTH that did not have any backyard trees, burning the ether seemed like something I’d have to wait for. However, my father graciously let me borrow his Kenwood TS-140S and the matching auto-tuner.

With no trees I used some pipe my father also let me borrow to get something up 20 feet or so. My father also gave me an antenna that work work up to 40 meters but was quite heavy. I was also forbidden from modifying this antenna so I was left to hack one of my own together.

All day today, despite the horrid heat and humidity, later dogged by thunderstorms rumbling to the South, I tried out several antenna designs. Being that the pole was steel, I learned a valuable lesson in inductance and how it affects an antenna. I finally settled on a type of end-fed Zepp that uses coax to the top of the pipe and an 80 meter trapped end from an antenna I used at my former QTH.

So far I’ve been able to tune to 80 and 40 meters, though I’m going to have to rely heavily on the tuner to get 20 meters tomorrow. When day breaks, I may hook up a different end and try to get the 20 and 10 meter bands.

While I am using commercial power, giving me a ‘D’ class, I feel this Field Day is best going to be happy making QSOs with a quick, and fairly impromptu, setup that got me on the air.

I’m going to be operating SSB 40 and 80 meters, perhaps more depending on the auto-tuner, with a ‘1D’ class. I hope to get a few contacts and confirm the setup that I’ve worked on today.