Monday, August 18, 2014


Adventure Radio Society 2014 Flight of the Bumblebees, Sunday, July 27

            The Adventure Radio Society Flight of the Bumblebees is a four-hour event held annually on the last Sunday of July. It is open to all radio amateurs.

2014 ARS Flight of the Bumblebees
Sunday, July 27
1700 to 2100 UTC

·                    1 p.m. to 5 p.m.   – Eastern
·                    12 p.m. to 4 p.m. – Central
·                    11 a.m. to 3 p.m. – Mountain
·                    10 a.m. to 2 p.m. – Pacific
·                    7 a.m. to 11 a.m. – Hawaii

The contest period accommodates multiple time zones simultaneously. No matter where you live, there will be time for Bumblebees to travel to a field operating site, set up their station, operate the contest, and travel home.

Both home-based and portable operations are encouraged.

Participants who operate portable from field locations are designated as Bumblebees. They get to their operating site principally under their own power by walking, biking, boating, and so on. The distance traveled to the site is at the Bumblebee’s discretion. Bumblebees add /BB to their calls. (NOTE: Home-based stations do not add /BB to their callsign.)

If you plan to operate the 2014 FOBB portable – in other words, from a field location – you’re invited to request a Bumblebee identification number. Instructions for obtaining a Bumblebee number are in the next section, below, headlined "Apply for a 2014 Flight of the Bumblebees Number."

There is no limit to the number of Bumblebees. You may apply for, and receive, a Bee number at any time up to July 27 prior to the contest.

Group operation is welcome in the Flight of the Bumblebees. You may operate under a single call and report a single score, or under multiple calls and report multiple scores. In any event, you are limited to operating a single transmitter at a time.

To keep with its minimalist theme, maximum FOBB power output is 5 watts.

We operate CW on 40, 20, 15 and 10 meters, around standard QRP frequencies.
  • /BB: If you are a Bumblebee, your exchange is RST, state/province/country, and your Bumblebee number.
  • Home Stations: If you are home based, your exchange is RST, state/province/country, and your power.

Here are examples of exchanges:

Bumblebee NE6SW / BB (Bumblebee No. 73) sends:
BB 73 or NR 73

Home-based station WN1DWL sends:

Everyone in the contest can work anyone else in the contest. In other words:
·                    Home-based stations can work other home-based stations and Bumblebees.
·                    Bumblebees can work other Bumblebees and home-based stations.

Here are the details:
·                    Each contact is worth one point.
·                    The same station can be worked on different bands for additional QSO points and multipliers.
·                    Contacts with Bumblebees generate a multiplier of three. NOTE: If you worked KI6SN/BB on two bands, it counts as two Bumblebee contacts.

Here’s an example of how your score will be calculated:
  • Say, you make 21 FOBB contacts on 40 meters.
  • You make 32 FOBB contacts on 20 meters.
  • In that combined total of QSOs, you contacted 14 Bumblebees. NOTE: If you worked KI6SN/BB on two bands, it counts as two Bumblebee contacts.
  • To determine your multiplier, multiply 14 Bumblebees times 3.

Using the FOBB Scoring Formuala:
  • Contacts: 21 + 32 = 53
  • BB Multiplier: 14 X 3 = 42
  • Total: 53 QSOs X 42 BB Multiplier = 2,226 Total points

Separate but equal commendations are awarded to the high scores for the home based and Bumblebee participants. We will also commend Bumblebees in the following categories:
  • Most interesting equipment
  • Most fascinating FOBB venture
  • Most beautiful site

Send your FOBB 2014 Reports via email to:

  • Full name
  • Callsign
  • Location of FOBB operation:
  • Total number of contacts (all bands):
  • Total number of Bumblebees (all bands):
  • Comments about your 2014 FOBB experience:
Photographs of your adventure are welcome and encouraged.

Results and soapbox comments will be reported on the ARS Spartan Sprint and FOBB website. That posting will be announced on the QRP-L mailgroup.

As with all ARS events, please keep safety in front of mind when conducting operations in the field. Such things as weather, power lines, terrain, dehydration and fatigue can be lethal. Above all, we want all participants to have a fabulous and safe experience.

– 73, Richard Fisher, KI6SN,
The Adventure Radio Society

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

Apply for a 2014 Flight of the Bumblebees Number

            The Adventure Radio Society Flight of the Bumblebees is a four-hour event held annually on the last Sunday of July. It is open to all radio amateurs.

2014 ARS Flight of the Bumblebees
Sunday, July 27
1700 to 2100 UTC

·                    1 p.m. to 5 p.m.   – Eastern
·                    12 p.m. to 4 p.m. – Central
·                    11 a.m. to 3 p.m. – Mountain
·                    10 a.m. to 2 p.m. – Pacific
·                    7 a.m. to 11 a.m. – Hawaii

The contest period accommodates multiple time zones simultaneously. No matter where you live, there will be time for Bumblebees to travel to a field operating site, set up their station, operate the contest, and travel home.

If you plan to operate the 2014 FOBB portable – in other words, from a field location – you’re invited to request a Bumblebee identification number. Here’s how:

1. CHECK THE DATABASE: An online database has been set up to show assigned Bumblebee numbers. Visit: < >.

2. OFFER THREE OPTIONS: Check the database  < >  for eligibility. Then send an email to:

 < > with:

  • Your Callsign
  • Your First Name
  • The field location you anticipate to be operating from
  • Your Top 3 Choices for FOBB Number

3. YOUR FOBB NUMBER ASSIGNMENT: Check the database, < >,after submitting your top three choices to see which number you have been assigned. The number listed in the database is your official 2014 FOBB number.

– 73, Richard Fisher, KI6SN,
The Adventure Radio Society

Saturday, August 9, 2014

So, What's a Spartan Sprint, and How Do I Play?

Spartan Sprints are two-hour gatherings sponsored by the Adventure Radio Society, held the first Monday of every month. The Spartan Sprints have a unique, three-faceted focus. They encourage outdoor operation with back country radio gear (if outdoor operation isn't practical, home-based operation is fine). They gather fascinating information about the upper atmosphere, documenting how low power signals can travel long distancs. And they encourage the growth of a like-minded community of amateur radio operator who generously share their knowledge and experiences.

Which Bands?

Bands of operation are 80 meters, 40 meters, 20 meters, 15 meters and 10 meters. You may operate any number of bands - your choice. Many Spartan Sprint operators gravitate to the QRP CW calling frequencies on these bands.

Equipment and Antennas

Spartan Sprinters use 5 Watts or less. We encourage you to experiment with 1 Watt or less. You will be surprised at how effective these low levels can be, and how much fun QRPp really is. Similarly, we encourage you to experiment with simple wire antennas. And we encourage Sprinters to use equpment they built from "scratch" - that is, equipment built from schematics.


Exchange RST, SPC (state, province or country) and power output. If you choose to call CQ, use the format "CQ SP," or "CQ QRP TEST." You can give yourself credit for working the same station on a second, third, or fourth band.

What Is the Weight of My Station?

The weight of your station is determined by weighing everything at your operating position up to, but not including, your feedline and antenna. In other words, your rig, key, keyer, antenna tuning unit, battery, headphones and so on. 

Submit Your Spartan Sprint Log

Please send the following information in an email to:
  • Your call sign
  • Total number of contacts during Sprint
  • The weight of your station (in pounds - includes all gear except antenna and feedline)
  • Soapbox comments about your Sprint experience

Check Out the Spartan Sprint Results

The results of each month's contest appear on the Friday following each month's first-Monday Sprint. They are posted here on this website. You can find results from previous months here, as well.
- Richard Fisher, KI6SN

Friday, August 8, 2014

Scoreboard: August 2014 Spartan Sprint

(Please click on the image for an enlarged view.)

Soapbox: August 2014 Spartan Sprint

Ran the K2 at 5w to 100' wire. Ended up with 46 contacts. Worked only 19 SPC's. Only one, ON, in Canada. But the pesky Texans were out in force: TX, 9; NC, NY, PA, 4 each; CO, NH, WI, 3 each; CA, ON, TN, VA, 2 each. Q'S by band: 3/18/25 on 80/40/20. SPC's by band: 3/11/18. Only three banders were K9OM and WB5BKL. 10 two banders. I was surprised at how well WI was coming in on 80 near the end. K9OM was something like 20 over. A fun evening for sure. Thanks to everyone who stopped by and see ya'all next month!

29 contacts, 15 states. Seems as though this was a good night for this activity.  Was using an LNR end fed 40/20 strung inverted vee style from a Jackite pole.  So I was limited to two bands.  Eleven of my 15 contacts on 20 meters was done in the first 30 minutes.  The last of my 14 contacts on 40 meters was at 0240Z.  Huge kudos go out to K2YGM in NY for being super persistent. I asked him for repeats too numerous to count and we finally completed the exchange.  This was my last contact on 40 meters.  The big sig for me came from NØTA on 20 meters and from K5JHP and WB5BKL on 40 meters. Always nice to have K4BAI in the log as well as W5ACM and WA5BUC.  I used to sit side by side with W5ACM and WA5BUC when I was active with the HQRP group out of Houston.

This was my first Spartan Sprint and one of my first CW contests ever.  I'm working hard on my copy and sending so thanks to everyone for QRS and repeats.  Radio was an HB-1A with eight NiMH AAs and a J-38 on a small block of wood.  A 40 meter dipole is the only antenna I have up right now so all my contacts were made there. Hoping to get better every month!  

Trying out a newly “assembled” rig tonight and while 20 meters sounded a little weak, 40 really started coming alive more and more. What a delight!  Thanks for the good contacts with new and familiar calls tonight. While I’ll never win one of these QRP contests, it certainly is a pleasure to be able to stop and talk with old friends in the middle of one of our fun Sprints.  Many thanks to Richard and his huge staff for sponsoring the A.R.S. events.

6 contacts on 20m using a MFJ 9020 to a dipole. One contact on 80M on an Omni VI+ running 5 watts, same dipole.No telling what all this weighs.  The MFJ not so much.  The Omni, a lot! I hoped to use the MFJ exclusively but ran out of stations to contact on 20M after 2100 Central.  I didn't hear much on the other bands either.  Maybe everybody was on at the start and then pooped out fast. It was good to dust off this little MFJ rig and see what it could do, again. Better luck next time.

Only had a brief window of time to operate, but it was fun. All contacts were on 40 meters.

First timer - Thanks for the Q's. KD1JV Tri-Bander (borrowed from Dale, WC7S), doublet w/BLT, Palm Mini, Gen Log.

OK, I only worked the last four minutes and have never heard of the contest sprint but thats my fault! hihi After I heard K9OM calling CQ SP I had to go look it up! So... 3 contacts, no laughing. Horrible question: Weight? Uhhhh, 25 pounds, I guess. Now that I know this is here the first monday of the month, I will be back!  

That was way cool. I decided to go out into the park and operate the WVØH 40m Park Portable Doublet with the KX3 and make couple of QSOs. The center was up 30 feet and I tried leaving the ends sag low; about 8 feet for a change. Wow! Was I pleasantly surprised. I started out on 20 and propagation was good. Double hop from CO to PA was wavering quickly and there was fast QSB but patience paid off. Each QSO took a little longer but it was worth the effort. After hanging out on 20 for an hour I switched to 40 meters and the band seemed noisy but workable. Thanks to all the regulars the new calls too. Next time I will remember the bug spray. This event should really be called the Skeeter Hunt. Maybe a name swap.Thanks for another fun Spartan Sprint.

A fun contest as it's always interesting to see how well QRP will work... or not work!   In my case, I ran a K3 at 5 watts with my base station antennas which consisted of 3 Tribanders, a 1/4-wave 40-meter Vertical, and an 80-meter Inverted Vee.

This may be my best sprint ever. 20 and 40 were very active and quiet. New and old calls on both bands. Started on 20 for 7 Q's. Then on to 40 for 8. Thanks to all.

Bands were great tonite. 20 was open up to the end. 40 was good except for QRM. pretty good nite over all. C YA next month.

This was the first time in a very long time that I've operated the whole 2 hours of the sprint. Had my first 40-mtr QSO at 0143Z, and my last 20-mtr QSO was at 0240Z, so activity on the two bands overlapped quite a bit (although it was very thin on 20 meters after 0140Z). Station: KX3 on 20 meters, K2 on 40 meters, inverted vees on both bands with the apex at about 40 feet.

Ten-Tec Jupiter at 5 W to a 2-element mini-beam at 25 ft for 10, 15, and 20 meters and an inverted vee at 40 ft for 40 m. 15 m yielded one QSO with WB5BKL. 20 m was good for 12 more and 40 m added 10. Bands were better than I expected with an A index of 12. Some sigs were quite loud. Thanks for the contacts and thanks to the organizers.

Good conditions on 40 and 20M.  No sprint signals heard on 15 or 80M.  Nice to work F/FK8IP/P on 20M.  Best DX on 40M was NK6A. Worked on both 20 and 40M: K5JHP, NK6A, W5HNS, WV0H, WA5BUC, K3RLL, W1PID, W4VHH, NQ2W, W5ACM, AA5B, N0TA, N3QE, WB5BKL, K9OM.  Thanks for all QSOs.

I operated with the KX3 and a Windom OCF. Good participation and lots of activity. I strayed off the QRP frequency when it slowed down on 20 meters and worked Kyrgyzstan and Nicaragua. NK6A in California was strong. Nice to work K7TQ in Idaho. Thanks for all the Qs.

All contacts made on 20M.  No one heard on 40M except the ARRL folks parked right on the QRP calling frequency. Still learning the ins-n-outs of my KX1 which seemed a little deaf on 20M.  The four 3.2V LiFePo4 batteries I have in it seem to be doing well. They keep the voltage well above 12V so my power is better than 2W with internal batteries.

I was up on the TN Cumberland Plateau to escape MS heat for a while, using the KX3 and CFZ. Glad to hear many familiar calls. Q's on 20 and 40, but 80 was QRN. CU all next month.

It has been over 8 years since I have participated in a Spartan Sprint.  I cruised around the bands and responded to stations calling CQ SP. 20 meters was the money band until around 0200 and then 40 meters was alive with activity.  DX was NM and CA from my Northern VA QTH with 5 watts and an Inverted L wire antenna supported by a tree.  It was fun.  Back again next month.  Thanks for the contest.

It was great to spend some serious time on 20M this month running the ATS-3A with the backyard vertical. I can’t spend much time calling CQ due to the battery capacity, but I did collect a fine batch of 18 total QSOs on 20M and 40M. W5HNS in San Antonio was a surprise catch. The noise level on both bands was delightfully low this month. I even managed a contact with W1AW/Ø in SD on 7029 kHz. I assume he was NOT running QRP though. He was in contest mode, so I would guess his power at something more than FIVE WATTS, perhaps even a KW . . . I still have some issues with the contacts on my homebrew, ultra-thin-plywood key paddle, but it was a really fun event!

here was moderate to heavy QRN on 20M. Thanks to K4BAI, W5HNS, and WB5BKL for this month's Sprint QSOs.

I went to my favorite location on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forest east of Moscow, ID and set up a W7EL Field Day Special antenna for 20 m. I've used this antenna many times, but the pieces have set in the garage and basement for a long time. It does take longer to put all 
the parts together, but it is worth the extra effort. The rig was a KX1 feed with 8 AA alkali batteries, ear pieces, and a Palm Mini paddle for a total of 0.897 lbs. Not the less than 1/2 lb that others achieve, but much better than my usual 30 lbs. 20 m was still open around the end of the sprint, but most folks had long since moved to 40. I was happy with the 16 Qs that the 2 to 2.5 w the station put out.

K3/10 @ 5W to various delta loops and wire antennas. Had 2 QSOs on 15M, 3 on 80M with the rest split between 20M and 40M. Had three-banders with NK6A, K9OM and AB9CA.  Best signals in cenTX: 15M - NQ2W, 20M - W4VHH, 40M & 80M - K5JHP.  NQ2W and I repeated our apparent pipeline between New York and Texas.  Join us on 15M next month!  Had fun.

Six contacts on 20m in 35 minutes of operating.  Signal strengths varied wildly here during contacts... 569 one moment, then below the noise the next! Didn't have a chance to weigh my KX3 with balun and battery pack (est. 3 to 4 lbs.), so I'm entering Tubby Class this time.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Results: July 2014 Spartan Sprint

(Please click on the Scoreboard for an enlarged view.)

Soapbox: July 2014 Spartan Sprint

WOW - what a blast!!!  THANK YOU everyone for the contacts!  Due to home remodeling, I currently can't operate from home.  So I decided to take my little radio out portable.  I climbed a near-by SOTA summit, and played Spartan Sprint and SOTA at the same time.  It was quite a success. I started the hike up at about 1715 local time, the skies were mostly cloudy and the temp was a pleasant 93º F.  I hiked up slow and easy, no reason to hurry.  Arrived on the summit with 15 minutes to spare.  I set up on the west slope of the summit, hoping for a good take-off angle to the Pacific (hoping for some VK action on 15m). I started out on 15m calling CQ.  My first contact was at 0103 from NK6A in CA.  15m got me CA, NJ, KS, OR, TX, AZ, TX and AZ for 8 total.  With no more takers on 15m, at 0130 I switched to 20m.  There I got AZ, TN, CA, TX, OR, CA and TX for 7 total on 20m.  With no more takers on 20m, at 0200 I switched to 40m.  It was still light out, but 40m got me 4 more with TX, TX, CA and TX in the log.  I was disappointed with 40m, and after much more CQing on 40m, I gave up and switched to 80m.  If 40m was poor, 80m was a disaster, and I only got 1 local in Texas.  The antenna wasn't playing nice, and I had no tuner.  The antenna worked at home, but not on the mountain. Well, (bad things) happen.  I quickly gave up on 80m and went back to 20m.  There I made more contacts as the band had shifted.  I worked OR, QC-CAN, TX, TX, CA, CA, and with just 4 minutes to go KX7L in WA got in the log for 7 more on 20m. So 8 + 7 + 4 + 1 + 7 = 27 contacts.  This was by far the best Spartan Sprint score I have ever done.  20m was my money  band with 14 contacts, 15m with 8 contacts, 40m with 4 contacts, and 80m with just one lonely contact.  I do not want the weight penalty of a tuner at the radio, so I need to work on the 80 antenna or just not use 80m portable again. It was a cool 84º F with a nice cool desert breeze when I started down. The
hike to the car was only 45 minutes, and a 10 minute drive to home.  Thanks again to all the contacts.  Looking forward to next month, work schedule permitting.

I operated from the forest east of Moscow, ID using a K2, 7 AHr gel cell, headphones, and a G4ZPY paddle. 20 meters was in good shape so I stayed there the entire time. The antenna was a SOTA Beams Band Hopper II.  As is usually the case, the first QSO was with Jim, W1PID. Contacts ranged from nearby OR to distant FL. It was a pleasant evening sitting in the shade of the pine trees and looking out over the forest. The non-radio highlight was a Goshawk flying through the tree canopy.

This was my first Spartan Sprint and a chance to try QRP with my new KX3. I started out on 15m and made 2 contacts before the band faded out. 20m was by far the best band for me and I had little trouble making contacts with only 5W.  Next time, I might have to drop down to 3W and give that a try. Switched to 40m for the last 15 minutes of the contest and made one contact. I had fun working everyone and look forward to doing this again and getting the weight down on my station.

Horrible QRN (S7-S8) on 20m.  Surprised and it was fun that 15m was open a bit. I need to do more of these sprints!

This was my first Spartan Sprint ever - or in a very long time. I may have done a few 10 years or so ago . . . I can't recall for sure. Rig was a KX3 with internal batteries, tuner and integrated keyer. Antenna was a 135' long inverted-L favoring the east. The QSO's seemed very challenging to get. With so many stations out west and me in Pennsylvania, I may need to go in the field and put up west favoring antenna next month. I need to take the KX3 in the field to initiate it in it's proper use!

I can't recall if I'd ever participated in a Spartan Sprint before. I enjoyed the chase and it helps me appreciate what I sound like to DX stations in the big contests. All contacts were made on 20 meters at 1 Watt transmit power, and I did check 40 and 15 meters, but to no avail. Operation here was cut short at 0130Z by nasty lightning storms, so I disconnected everything and didn't come back to the rig before 0300Z. I need to go on a (radio) diet - when my linear regulated power supply weighs more than all the rest of the gear combined, it's time to look into some small batteries.  I suppose there's incentive to dig out my NorCal-40 rig and my homebrew 20 meter CW rig - together they weigh less than a pound, I suspect. Hope to put in a full effort next month!

There was just a little time to operate tonight between thunderstorms. I used my Yaesu FT-817 at 0.5 watts to a ladder line fed dipole, and made 4 contacts pretty quickly.  This included new 1,000 MPW contacts with K7TQ in Idaho and WVØH in Colorado.  Thanks to all for a great time.

I've been away from this for a while. It was good to get back and work some stations on 40 and 20. I tried 15, but did not find anyone - maybe my timing was poor. I'm experimenting with a home-built DC-DC converter to power a K-1. This used an LM2586 to supply 13 Volts. The input range went down to 3.5 Volts, so I operated at 2 W RF power using 4 Sanyo Eneloop AA batteries. The DC-DC converter weighs 2.4 oz, which seems reasonable. The plan is to take this all backpacking next month.

My first Spartan Sprint and first CW contest. Pretty fun!

K3/10 @ 5W to a 20M delta loop or a 40M dipole. My thanks to WA8ZBT, K5JHP, W5ACM, KG3W and K6LEN for QSOs in the final 10 minutes of the sprint. We had supper guests who arrived 3 hours late (it was not their fault). I did not get to the rig until 0250Z. Too bad I
can't maintain that QSO rate for the entire sprint! Oh well, had fun anyway. . .    

That was a blast! While on holiday in Minnesota I got a chance to see what the Northlanders experience in HF QRP ops. Well, that little bit of latitude further north is considerable! The signals are just a bit weaker, the fades a bit deeper and you really have to work at getting an antenna up proper. I put up my WVØH Park Portable Doublet at 20 feet and left off my coil and cap tuner and just used the MiniBalun in the 4:1 position. It resulted in a 2.8:1 VSWR. My KX3 antenna tuner adjusted for a mostly efficient match. I started out working K5GQ then K7TQ. NQ2W and N5EM joined in. Then of course an old time favorite of yours and mine W1PID from NH came bursting onto the scene. Back and forth, TX then the northeast, TX, Northeast back and forth. W5ACM of course probably running a 1-ounce rig running 30 Qs an hour will no doubt place. Then the usuals, N1DN, AB9CA, and WA8ZBT were strong contenders. 1 watt signals from K8CN, K4JPN, and N1DN were impressive. My sister in law was standing over my shoulder at the time truly impressed by the beep strength as she put it. Nineteen QSOs were had on 20m and none on 40. 40 just seemed dead and noisy, so no joy there. Next month, I will be back home and hopefully won't forget the event. Thanks everybody for a great vacation break from "up north" where beep strength matters, the women are strong and the children are all above average. Keep your stick on the ice.

Tough night for the bands in New England.  Only made contacts on 20 meters.  Also had to quit early due to t-storm.  Still, fun as usual.  KX1 on internal batteries (3W at best) to a 63' end fed that's resonant on 40/20/15/10.

20 meters was the only active band. Best DX: RX9JX, NK6A. K5GQ worked the hardest to pull me out! Thanks! Operated about a half an hour. K2 OCF dipole. Thanks all.

A good sprint! Ran the K2 at 5w to 100' wire. Got another late start by about 20 min. Started on 20 as it is Staying open later. Logged 22 there, including a couple of EU stations, before moving to 40. Logged 15 there. Finished with the last 10 min on 80 and logged 2 there. QRN was pretty bad, even on 20. Only the loudest were able to get through on 80. WA8ZBT, N5EM, NK6A and NQ2W were two-banders. No three banders. My RBN spots say that 20m was open and long. Quite a few 5w spots from the EU. Thanks to everyone that stopped by and to KI6SN for doing all the work! See everyone next month.  

Back in PA for the summer and enjoying the ‘power’ of an outside antenna and no HOA Restrictions up here in the sticks.  Hi Hi. Sprint seemed to start slowly and build. Big signals heard tonight included NQ2W & WA8ZBT. Dennis, followed you to 15m, but no go. Thanks for the fun and nice contacts. See you next month.

Thanks for the QSOs, and 72.

Having trouble with ATS-3  audio  very weak on 20M but OK on 40M. N4BP called me on 20M and had trouble hearing the signal. The audio is very low.

Bands were in reasonable shape.  Worked 3 stations on 2 bands and one station on 3 bands. Be back next month. Hope for more stations on the air next month.

I had a brand new set up for July's SP. I built the latest Mountain topper radio from Steve; KD1JV. It's a 3 band version for 30,20,and 17 mtrs. So I went single band - 20 meters. It's the size of a deck of cards but weighs less. Key is a whiterook paddle and used a 370 mah lipo. Put up my temporary backyard full wave delta loop for 20 meters and it tunes 1.1 to 1 on cw. So I can now ditch my T1 tuner for the evening.  Radio is a real battery miser.  Lipo 3s starts out at 12.4 volts and after 2 hours I still had 11.2 volts showing, which is the lipo's sweet spot. Still running 4.6 watts at contest end. LOVE this radio! Weight breakdown: Radio 4.32 oz; Key 1.44 oz; Battery 1.44 oz; Total weight is 7.2 oz or .45 lbs. I made 14 contacts. Best DX was NK6A in CA. Heard a 9A station but he was hit and run. Propagation was nice into Florida. Worked Art,  WB4MNK, @ 4w and KG4GVL, GB, @ 1 watt. Thanks again for a FUN evening.  Think I'm going to look for a smaller battery. Hi!

Sure enjoyed using the little KX1, ear buds, ZM-2, Lipo battery and the tiny Dirt Cheap paddle. Fun event and thanks to all I made contact with. 

I had the KX3 running on internal batteries. The rig's wide range internal ATU works very well on my CFZ antenna. Almost all activity was on 20M. Only heard a couple of stations on 40M which was filled with moderate QRN. After the sprint was half over, I didn't hear many stations, so I suppose most ops had given up. Also my cat was sitting on my logbook, staring me in the face, so I quit.

It was really great to spend some time on 20M this month. The locations I worked from Houston were as far NE as N7UN in NJ and SW to NK6A in CA. I still have a small issue with 40M reception and the contacts on the keyer paddle. Only five QSOs on 40M, but FOUR of the FIVE were in Texas! Lots of activity down here! I will keep working on the paddle contacts. I cleaned them twice during the event, but there were still problems. The two 170 mAh LiPo batteries did quite well, but the power output with a nominal 7.4 VDC is 3 Watts, and once again started dropping just after the first hour. I was probably around 2 Watts toward the end.

QSOs: 13; States/Provinces: 7; Weight: 0.61 lb. Radio: KX1 [40/30/20] with ATU and paddle; Ear buds; 750 mAh Li-Poly battery. Antenna: Alexloop. Location: On our deck, Auburn CA.

K1 at 5 W to a 2-element mini-beam at 25 ft for 10, 15, and 20 meters and an inverted V at 40 ft for 40 m. I started out on 15 m and was able to work NK6A. I moved to 20 and was privileged to make 8 QSOs. Then to 40 for 9 more. The QRN on 40 was problematic. Thanks for the repeats. Doubles with NK6A (15 & 20) and WB4MNK and AB9CA (20 & 40). Good to work K3RLL in PA! Thanks for the contacts and thanks to the organizers.

20M was not as good as June, but still managed 5 Qs.  It seemed activity was down this month, but that might just be conditions here. Thanks to AB9CA for pulling me out on 80M near the end.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Results: June 2014 Spartan Sprint

For enlarged view, please click on the scoreboard.