6 Meter Halo Antenna Project

An easy to build, 6m halo antenna.                                                              By Adrian Jarrett-K6KY

The Conejo Valley Amateur Radio Club was looking for project ideas for the members.  Early in 2017 the Radio Society of Great Britain published a 2-meter band halo design, which looked easy and fun to build.  This was chosen as one of the club’s projects.  However, the Conejo Valley is surrounded by hills, and so long haul 2m may be a bit problematical.  That, and after having a great time in summer 2017 on 6m sporadic E, first with JT65 in the June ARRL VHF contest, and then with FT8, a 6m halo seemed like a worthy project.  The Continue reading “6 Meter Halo Antenna Project”

Personalities of HF Bands

By Norm Campbell-AB6ET

Each band has its own personality and characteristics.  The sun and ionosphere, as well as other factors, cause the HF bands to be different during the day or at night and also at different times of the year.  Getting on the air is the best way to find out what works and what doesn’t.  Pick a band, get on it, stay with it for a while.  Tune around, move up and down across the band.  Try different times of day.

HF bands are not quiet and solid copy like VHF/UHF FM simplex or repeaters.  It takes a good ear to successfully hear HF signals.  SSB has its own sound.  CW has its own sound.  Mix in QSB, noise, interference, other band conditions, and you have some listening to do to gain skill on HF. Continue reading “Personalities of HF Bands”

Amateur Radio and Mt. Washington: The Highest, Coldest Point in New England

By Ben Kuo, AI6YR

“CQ CQ CQ… CQ Summits on the Air, Summits on the Air… This is Alpha India Six Yankee Romeo, calling Summits on The Air…”

There I was, standing on the peak of the highest point in New England, Mt. Washington, known for some of the worst weather in the world, braving at least a 40 mph wind in forty degree weather and not making any contacts. The peak, the most prominent mountain east of the Mississippi River, sits at 6,288 feet, and is known for one of the fastest wind speeds ever recorded on the surface of the Earth, 231 miles per hour, recorded in April 12, 1934. The peak is also well known for being on the Appalachian Trail. Continue reading “Amateur Radio and Mt. Washington: The Highest, Coldest Point in New England”

Programming a Baofeng UV-5R

By Andy Ludlum-K6AGL

Many hams have found the low-priced radios from China like the Baofeng UV-5R hard to resist.  Seriously, who doesn’t have room for one more HT if it costs less than $30?

The delight of having a new radio to play with quickly turns to despair when you take a look at what passes as an owner’s manual.  Programming a frequency into one of the memories is not easy, because the procedure is not described in the manual. Continue reading “Programming a Baofeng UV-5R”

Summer Sporadic E Season

By Pete Heins-N6ZE
In my retired life, I live in Thousand Oaks, but spend time on Whidbey Island, about 20 miles North of Seattle. I manage to do some HF/VHF/UHF operating from both QTHs, despite major “domestic engineering” needs at both locations!
Because July is normally at the peak of the Summer Sporadic E Season (Es), I concentrated my limited WA radio time this week to be on 6meters only. Es tends to heavily favor 10 meter and 6 meters. Single hop distance ranges from

about 300 miles to a maximum of about 1200 miles. Multi-hop Es also occurs with DX as far as the East Coast, Hawaii, and even Japan on a very SPORADIC basis! Continue reading “Summer Sporadic E Season”