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AB4AN USA flag USA

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QSL image for AB4AN

Please QSL direct. Do not use the Bureau. (The date is Jan. 17, 2013 and I just got cards for QSOs in 2003 from them. Time to do something different.)

I began the hobby around 1987. My novice call was KC4BFW. I quickly upgraded to Tech Plus and changed call to N4RIF. For years I kept an active ticket, but did not do much with the hobby. Then, in 2012 the interest rekindled and I upgraded to General Class in June of 2012, followed quickly by the upgrade to Extra Class, which was obtained in July of 2012. My call changed to AB4AN as of Aug. 9, 2012. Shortly after I applied for V.E.

I work in the publishing industry. I am an author and publisher at Fifth Estate Publishing. http://www.fifthestatepub.com

We recently published two book to help others get their license and upgrades. The first book is called, "Just the Facts."

The second book is, "A Complete Study Guide For Technician, General, Extra Class Ham Radio Exams, and the Volunteer Examiner's Test: Including the Correct Answers to All Questions, With Basic Theory and Regulations."

Both books come in paperback or via Kindle.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Technician-General-Volunteer-Examiner/dp/1936533308/

 

I live in Alabama with wife, friends, books, students, and radios.

My other hobby is Martial Arts. http://www.shinseihapkido.com - although as I approach 60 (born in 1955) I teach more than I play.

My first rig was a KenwoodTS 440s-AT,which was still performing when I sold it last year (2013).

 

The newest addition to the shack is a Flex 5000A, with a PC, new mic, and speaker.

 

The HF station consists of a Flex 5000 and a Kenwood TS 590, AL-811H, and an Intellituner. The LDG1000Pro antenna tuner as a backup tuner. The Ameritron 1500 is a backup amp and a "pile-up buster".

 

For 6,10,15, and 20 meters I use a Hex Beam. There is now a 520ft loop up for 40 - 160 meters. There is also a 250ft dipole for 75/80 and 40 meters.

 

The Satellite station consists of a Kenwood TS-2000X with Landware pre-amps. Satellite antennas consists of a 10 element cross beam on 2 meters and a 7 element on 70 cm. I built an elevation rotor out of an old C band satellite screw drive and PVC pipe. Works great. The antennas are mounted on a simple Radio Shack rotor. A Windows laptop runs SAT 32 and controls the dopler / frequencies of the Kenwood 2000.

 

The Yaesu FT-100 is a backup rig for FM satellite work. It's HF output is running through an LDG antenna tuner. The Kenwood 2000 failed as the satellitle primary for FM satellites because most Kenwood 2000s have a birdie on the FM downlink frequency so I do not use it on the FM birds. (Way to go Kenwood. They made a receiver for satellite use with no way to use the FM downlink frequency... )

The antenna farm looks like a spider's web with a Hexbeam, a 520 ft loop, and a couple of dipoles. The Hexbeam was made by Leo Shoemaker in Birmingham, AL. He is a very nice gent and his antennas work very well. It was a pleasure meeting with him. SInce I live less than an hour from him I drove to his house to meet him and pick it up.

RTTY and PSK31 are decoded through the Kenwood, R-2000. The laptop in the picture tuns PC SAT32 to track satellite locations.  The Macbook G4 keeps me connected to QRZ.com.

Yaesu FT-100 with LDG antenna tuner and an Opec antenna are used in the mobile.

Aug 27, 2012 - Last night, after 4 days of work I finished the mounts, rotator, and co-phase harnesses. I set up the Kenwood 2000x for its first satellite contact. - I made my first contact via satellite OSCAR 52 using SSB. What a rush it was to hear my voice coming back from space...

The station is good from 1.8 MHz to 1.2 GHz now.

 

Thank god for a wife that understands that I have obsessions.

 

A summer rain in Alabama brings a rainbow, which ends at my QTH

My QTH with a rainbow shining after one of the frequent summer storms, but the Ham Shack is around back in the guest house. It is quiet there.

 

The Ham Shack is in the guest house. The Hexbeam is almost completed. In the background is the Hustler trapped verticle. Look closely near the peek of the roof and you will see an S9 verticle on the other side of the house.

Here is the construction of the satellite elevators. It uses a "C" band satellie screw drive to elevate the antennas. 

Of late I have been having a ball getting the Kenwood 2000X to work as the station in a remote link to my SmartPhone. Using two separate computers on the station (or host) side, I ran remote desktop data through one using TeamView and audio link through the other with Skype. The Teamview computer uses Kenwood's ARCP program controls the radio through the host to the remote link on my Samsung Smartphone. I bring up Skype on my phone and connect to the host, then bring up Teamview and connect to the host with the Kenwood software. I turn on the radio, dial up the band and frequency, engage the VOX and transmit using Skype. Audio is clear and control is smooth. I have worked DX while strolling through Walmart. What a blast.

 

Fan Dipole below was a test. Worked well but not as well as the 520ft loop.

Fanned diploes running as Inverted Vs and the Hustler 6 BTV

 

 

 

Back yard between the house and the guest house. Hexbeam project is done - time to clean up.

 

 

Satellite Communications

 

I have spent most of my life in the fields of electronics and computers. The reason for my fascination can be traced back to a single evening when I was very young. My uncle brought me outside on a clear Georgia night. He had set up a small table where sat a shortwave radio. He pointed up into the black sky and said,

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