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Paul Butzi (W7PFB)
One of the things that came up at the Tuesday Ballfield gathering last week was the idea of an Antenna Rodeo.
The basic idea: a bunch of band/frequencies are put into a hat - at least one frequency for each band from 80m to 6m. (you’d probably want at least two different frequencies for 80m, 40m, but maybe only one for 6m, etc.)
All those band/frequencies pairs go into a hat. Everyone who wants to participate carries their gear out into the field of contest. A Band/freq pair is drawn from the hat. When the starter announces the drawn pair, everyone gets to set up an antenna for that frequency. The goal is to get an antenna up that has an acceptable SWR at the desired frequency.
Maybe have different scoring for tuner needed/no tuner needed, qrp/medium power/qro.
My suggestion would be to have the various participants award points as they see fit for things like packed size/weight, cost effectiveness, time to put the antenna up, ease of adjustment, elegance, vertical/horizontal polarization, amount of space needed to deploy, color of wire, etc and announce their scoring, and when everyone has scored all the antennas you just ignore the points (e.g. “whose line is it anyway” scoring where the points don’t matter).
Then after everyone is done putting up that antenna, awarding points, etc. if time permits we just do it again, for a different band.
Seems to me like it could be a lot of fun and something where we might invite hams from other clubs to come and participate. Food might be consumed. Beverages might be consumed. Friendly competition might occur. We might get to know one another better. And everyone would probably learn a thing or two and walk away with a bunch of new ideas.
If this seems worth pursuing I would be happy to be the person to carry the ball forward, pick a date, try to contact other clubs, pick a good location, etc. A location with suitable trees might be good but it could also be challenging to have to put up an antenna in a parking lot, in an empty field, etc.
73, Don’t forget to smile and have fun!
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