I look at the almost-rain clouds. As a Biofeedback therapist, I have seen clients everyday for the
last 3 weeks, assisting them thru the anxiety they've encountered due to the world-wide panic.
For the rest of the weekend, my goal is to play radiosport as NX6T w/an ad-HOC team of operators ranging from 14 to around 72 (I'm somewhere in the middle). The goal is to revamp the Elecraft K3/0 connection to run NX6T's Station-2 (instead of the usual STN-1). And additionally, thanks to a wide-selection of operators in Fallbrook, I'm going to look for opportunities to put the WQ6X callsign on the air, in this weekend's 48-hour CQ WPX Ssb contest melee; NX6 & WQ6 are desirable contest prefixes (I.e. Multipliers).
After last weekend's BARTG HF RTTY Contest, the Rockville audio mixing box was hastily cabled into the FT-1000mp @W7AYT's QTH. For Cw and RTTY purposes, this implementation is quite effective, altho the interaction between the devices/channels takes some getting used to.
The REAL test will be in this weekend's Ssb contest.
Additionally, an MFJ-1020 Active Antenna [Pre-selector] has been rescued from the "mothballs" to
be inserted into the 1000mp's RX Antenna path. The ICOM 7000 (currently being used for SWL'ing
at W7AYT) has a SUPER pre-amp built-in; as such, it would benefit very little from any additional outside-amplification devices.
Fast-forward to NoW [03:35z after the contest] and looking back, most things did not happen the way I had considered that they would go; not a bad thing necessarily, just a different set of circumstances and equipment configurations to troubleshoot.
The 4 stereo channels give audio access to:
- ICOM 7000 (Direct)
- FT-1000mp (Direct)
- Elecraft K3/0 (Direct)
- FT-1000mp (Filtered Audio)
The audio switch (below mixed) directs audio to:
- Amplified Stereo Speakers (w/ sub-Woofer)
- Wireless (non-amplified) headsets.
While the isolation filters isolate units, it's often
at a cost of impedance mis-matching which can significantly lower the volume; the main reason for adding an internal amplifier to the Rockville mixer.
Overall, the Rockville mixer is destined to play a continuing role in the audio processing for WQ6X.
The Com8 mini-plug stereo switch box will be re-assigned to my Alameda location, allowing further testing of another Autek QF-1A filter pair being experimented with there.
As it turns out, I never managed to resolve the IP-address conflict that has prevented me from running the Elecraft K3/0 into Fallbrook. The RCForb backup plan also failed as microphone audio was not strong enough to key the radio on the other end - Go Figure.
With extra time to focus on WQ6X operations in Concord, I was dismayed to experience the usual signal-vortex at this East Bay location. Even the strongest signals seemed quite weak.
Another anomaly at this location is the fact that the CH-250 vertical is often LESS-noisy than the sloppy WQ6X 8JK somewhat-inverted Vee.
With the MFJ Versa Tuner II it is easy to select either the 8JK Vee, the CH-250 vertical or the WQ6X JA Sloper (that rarely hears JA) - with or with out the tuning section. I am continuously amazed which antenna actually gives the best reception.
The last hour of the contest found WQ6X scouring 20 meters and then ending the WPX GiG with
a handful of QSOs finagled on 40 meters. While this was indeed a WEIRD WPX contest, like every contest event I always get something useful out of the time spent; and, it keeps my attention off the panic being experienced by non-amateurs around the world wide.
As it turns out, VHF (2-meter) amateur radio operators have the greatest chance for survival.
Did YOU work this year's WPX Ssb Weird Prefix Contest?
Is WQ6X or NX6T in YOUR Log?