Radio W4KAZ

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Solar Flux Does Its Thing

Well, glad to see we didn’t get a complete solar fizzle. As the sunspot numbers for the new cycle swung up, propagation had mostly not improved tremendously.

Then like the flick of a switch – whammo. Suddenly this past week has seen improved conditions above 20m. All coinciding with the calendar shift from summer to autumn. 10m conditions have been good relative to the last six years this entire week. JA’s on 10m. EU on 10m every morning. These conditions are a very nice improvement which would be welcome to continue, but are at the mercy of the capricious nature of a three percent variable star.

Smoke ’em if ya got ’em.

Summer Review – Field Day 2011

Drove out to the mountains to hook up with N4YDU and N4PY for another great FD. The Stone Mt. site is just plain awesome. The set up was heavy on keeping it simple. We used 40m doublets and an 80m Vee operating 1A with a 6m setup.

One of the 40m antennas showed a high noise level again, which I expect is being generated locally. Probably something in the park restroom is generating the RFI. We had the same problem when we operated from the site previously. But thats all a part of FD – working through the problems.

The 56 ft doublets were a lot less impressive on top of a mountain than at the beach for IOTA, which is not really a surprise. I expect most of their performance in 2010 IOTA was due to ocean side proximity and propagation. Left to my own devices the first choice for 40m will forevermore be resonant dipoles or loops.

The FD wx was great. Overnight temps fell into the low 60’s or 50’s, which is a really nice change after afternoon temps in the 90’s.

And as always, operating with N4YDU and N4PY was great.

The only downside was there was no time before or after to get in a couple of days of camping and hiking the park trails.

Missing In Inaction

Lots of stuff to log in the blog since CQ WPX, but not much interest in writing it up.

To keep the record relatively continuous there will be a raft of stuff popping up. Its always easy to write while I’m simultaneously getting my fill of college football. And the season kickoff is at hand[boooo Ducks, yea Tigers!] Lots of good matchups in the schedule this season. Probably lose time in Sweeps again for the LSU-‘Bama game. Unless its available streaming so I can get the game in the shack.

Football and contesting – yea!