Sunday, June 23, 2013


More like "QRT FD" for me. Plans to stop by the Heart O' Texas ARC field day site were thwarted by other obligations. Instead, I operated 1D from the house for a couple of hours to try to pick up a few of the 13 states needed on phone for Triple Play, and 20m WAS on LOTW. Worked nine empty slots (MI and NC for Triple Play Phone, and GA, IL, MI, NC, OH and SC for 20m Phone), now waiting to see if these stations upload their logs to LoTW. Also HI on 15m, my only Q on that band.

Took the opportunity to update N1MM Logger to the latest version and make sure everything was working in prep for IARU HF.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

One week later...

QRV: The station has been put back together, mostly. The K3 is connected to the old Dell desktop running XP, the  Flex 1500 to the laptop which I wiped clean and installed a fresh copy of Windows 8. Everything seems to be playing well together. One week back on the air and two new ones in the log: St. Helena and Indonesia.

Flex and DM780: Using VSP Manager, I was able to get the rig talking to HRD but still need to configure VAC to get DM780 working with the Flex. Either that or make a set of cables to get audio in and out of the rig. Much rather keep it down to a single USB connection, though.

DXCC!: The Awards tab in HRD kept telling me I had 80-something countries confirmed. Then I noticed a couple that were not checked, even though I know I had them. So a careful recount by hand ensued. Lo and behold, I have 102 confirmed. Only took 26 years of halfhearted card chasing.

Monday, June 10, 2013

I'm back.

Three years QRT after the move to West, and just now getting around to setting up the station again. Some prodding from my Google+ co-conspirators helped, but the clincher was the XYL who suggested demanded we go to the Plano Ham-Con so I could take my Extra Class test (passed with zero studying and just 6 missed questions!) and buy a new toy.

The new toy in question is a Flex 1500, something I've wanted for a while just to get dip my feet in the SDR pool. I had a chance to play with it a bit last night after finishing the coax run and setting the Tarheel up in the backyard. Initial impression is something along the lines of "HOLY CRAP!!!!" I envision this rig to be dedicated to digital modes. No intention of giving up the K3, just wanted to see how green the grass is on the other side of the fence.

We sat in on K5GJ's talk on SDR and the new 6000 series from Flex. Pretty amazing stuff they're doing down in Austin...

The Elecraft booth was hopping, and I lusted over the KPA500 amp. And the KX3. And probably would have picked up a K1 kit had I not already dropped $700+ on the Flex. Maybe next year.

Got to spin the knobs on a bunch of rigs I'd up until now only seen in QST -- TS-990S, FT-3000, FT-1200. All handsome rigs.

Did I mention I passed my Extra Class test? [Fist pump.]

They call it "wireless." They lie!