Radio W4KAZ

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Website Upgrade

I don’t usually adopt software on its immediate release, but I was planning to upgrade the blog software anyway, so the new version arrived at the appropriate point in time. So far everything appears to be good to go.

update#1: I’ve also opened the comments up, since it appears there are three or four people making regular visits. Feel free to chatter away.

update#2 :Whoops–having a problem with the sub domain. I can access the blog as but not as Hmmmm.

update#3: Thursday, 20070927: Still having a sub domain problem. Its better-sorta. The sub domain is redirecting to the home directory now instead of just barfing. I scratch my scalp and ponder. Perhaps in the fullness of time, I shall grok.

Update#4: Tursday 20080308: Still a problem.

N1LN Antennas Sprouting

N1LN and his XYL N1YXU have been busy since the last visit. All three towers are complete, and several antennas have already gone up. This past weekend we helped raise a 2 element 40 meter yagi to the ring rotor at 66 feet on the 40 meter tower. This station is going to rock.

Bruce and Laurie have done a great deal of work since the last gathering. There are now coax runs from the house out to the remote panel, and some of the trenching is done for the runs to the towers. There is still a lot of work to be done, but its beginning to come together for them. I’m glad to get a chance to see it up close, as I’m learning a lot about the process.

The next time I go, I’ll try to remember to bring the camera so I can get a few snapshots from the top.

Homebrew – Plastic Knobs

The September 2007 volume of the Straight Key Century Club newsletter, the Centurion, has an interesting article by KI4STU, Detrik. In it, he describes the steps one can take to mold specialty custom knobs. Sounds simple.

I wonder how well the resin will hold paint? Maybe the new Krylon for plastic? Maybe a shot of spray adhesive first as a primer coat? Gotta try it.

After-market Car Audio–Cool Site

I just stumbled upon the Install Dr., a site that documents many of the auto makers pin diagrams, as well as lots of other helpful information for someone looking to install a sound system into a vehicle. I just thought I’d document it here for posterity(and my own future reference!)

Shelby Hamfest 2007

We made the annual pilgrimage to the Shelby, NC hamfest. The flea market area looked like it was back to normal now that everyone is adjusted to fuel price realities. Attendance seemed down last year after the sharp spike in gasoline prices just before labor day.

I finally got a good look at the Yaesu FT-450. Its not much larger physically than an FT-100D and a bit smaller than the FT-897. Also on display was the new FT-950.

So many radios to choose from.

The hamfest was fun. I enjoyed the trip there and back with K4CZ, NT4Q and N4YDU. N4YDU had ‘no joy’ looking for a new slightly pre-owned radio toy. I picked up a few odds and ends from the flea market, but came up empty on 1/4 inch stereo inline jacks. Yesterdays ubiquitous parts are todays hen’s teeth. Go figure.

New FT-950

Wooooweee. Yaesu has their lineup rounded off just in time for the beginning of the sunspot cycle. Their new FT-950 was on display at the Shelby, NC Hamfest. This radio is being listed already at below $1500 via the normal stores. The 950 seems to be the replacement for the discontinued FT-920 in the middle level of the Yaesu HF base station lineup. Very interesting.

Here is a link to a higher resolution photo of the 950. The ads are already up at AES and Universal radio, maybe everywhere else too. The Yaesu rep indicated these would start shipping in September.

It appears to have only the single receiver. Okay by me. It seems to have lost the separate RX antenna input. Not so okay. One of my favorite features from the FT-920 is MIA on the 950–the ‘shuttle jog’ tuning ring. Too bad. I really like that. It will be fun to hear reports from buyers. I’d really like to finally see a contest capable radio hit the market on the lower end of the price spectrum. That would be a Good Thing for contesting.

I sure hope its filtering is sharper than my FT-920 without losing anything on the weak signal performance. That would make it a great entry level contesting rig. That is about the same price as a used 1000MP with some of the filters, making the question–new or used?


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