Paul Butzi (W7PFB)
With the contributions of time, expertise, and materials from Jim W7ABD, Shawn K7ATA, Tom WA7TBP, and Paul KG7STV we’ve made tremendous progress at getting the radios in the Carnation City Hall space operational.
* The Comet GP-6 VHF/UHF antenna we had on the roof that was serving the dual band VHF/UHF Kenwood TM-V71A had failed over the winter. Not long ago, Jim and I replaced it with a Comet GP-3 of unknown history. Today we replaced that GP-3 with a Comet tri-band CX-333 which will cover 2m, 1.25m, and 70cm. We’ve run an antenna analyzer and the SWR on all three bands is excellent. That antenna is now connected to the TM-V71A and that radio is available for use.
* We had been unaware the GP-6 had failed (water ingress) until Jim happened to hook up an antenna analyzer and check it. The period of time where the antenna was useless and thus the TM-V71A was not operational could have been anywhere between 4 months and mere minutes. This underscores that we need club members to USE that radio on a regular basis so that we’re confident that it is always working correctly. I’d love to see club members establish a rotation where every week a different member takes a turn checking in to the weekly UHF net from the Carnation space. That would advance two goals: we would notice any equipment failure quickly, and it would get club members familiar and comfortable with operating from the Carnation space. If you’re game to try the Kenwood TM-V71A radio let me know and I’d be delighted to meet you there and walk you through getting into the room and using the radio.
* The horizontal loop antenna and remote tuner for HF are now up and operational. The Yaesu FT-857 is connected and today Jim and I watched with great delight as Shawn conducted an SSB QSO with Tom operating mobile in his vehicle. There are still some issues to be sorted out with this gear so I’m going to ask folks to hold off on using the HF rig until we get all the details nailed down tight AND establish some training for proper operation.
* there are now logbooks in the Club room. One is to log when you visit the space, one is to log use of and changes to the VHF/UHF radio, and one is to log use of and changes to the HF setup. If you visit the space please make an entry in the log for the room giving the date, time, your name and callsign and any problems or issues you found. If you use one of the radios, please make an entry in the appropriate logbook. It takes only seconds to make an entry in the logbook, so please please please do it. The logbook for the room is hanging on a coathook near the door, the logbooks for the radios are on the counter next to each radio.
* I want to thank Jim, Shawn, and Tom for all their assistance in all this.
73, don’t forget to smile and have fun