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G8NDL England flag England

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I have never found the roots of my interest in radio and electronics. However from a very young age I can always remember having an interest in things electrical. Maybe it was when my grandfather used to buy things for a penny in a market and bring them home for my amusement. They didn't remain in one piece for very long. With a screwdriver and a pair of pliers I was always finding a way into seeing how these things worked. As I got older I remember getting a crystal set as a Christmas present, and later getting a few Philips electronic circuit kits which also fired my imagination. My father always a practical man encouraged me to use my initiative and my imagination. I think it was his influence that encouraged me to be what I am today.

Leaving school, and entering a professional career I had the good fortune to meet a number of people and one person in particular, Peter Jaggs (now G7IQM) who gave me that Eureka moment, and from that point forward electronics design seemed so much clearer to me. I am grateful to a number of other people in my life, too many to state here. They, if they read this must know who they are.

My main interest currently is working HF, and now work most digi modes primarily on 30m, where you will mostly find me. Although I can work on any band on HF from 80m to 10m (NoV for 60m). I am interested in working on 4m, 2m and 70cm, but most of my work is now HF in the evenings and early mornings at weekends from the home QTH.

I enjoy designing and building, my current major project is small foot print antennas, where I am working on a new multi-band compact vertical design primarily for HF, no radials. We have a very small garden, hence the very small HF antennas. They are shown below in the photos. I am hoping to compliment what you see below in the photo to include Top Band and 6m verticals.

I am very pleased to have received the Ostermeyer trophy from the RSGB this their centenary year for a published article in RadCom 2012. This coincides with my twenty fifth year of writing. That article was published during two issues last year for a VSWR meter I designed. One of the VSWR meters is in constant use each time I go on HF. I'll keep writing as long as the subject matter keeps coming and I can use the old grey matter.

There are two HF antennas working with the current station which comprises of:

Radios: Yaesu FT101ZD, Icom IC-718, Yaesu 8800, Smallwonderlabs 30m & 20m QRP digi rigs, Pye Olympic (4m), Pye MX294 (2m), Pye MX296 (70cm), Pye M294 (4m), Motorola MCS 2000 (70cms), Alinco DR-430 (70cms) and a Kenwood R1000.

HF ATU: MFJ-901B & SG-239 Smart tuner.

Antennas (HF): Multiband vertical (3.5, 5, 7, and 10MHz) on the right hand side. Multi-band vertical (14, 18,21, 24 and 29MHz) shown on the left hand side below. Both antennas are automatically switched under computer control, they are shown in picture below on a very cloudy day. I have worked on a new system of controlling five remotely switched antennas and an auto ATU down the coax. It works beautifully.


Control box with SG-239 auto ATU. Power to the auto ATU and the relay is provided down the coaxial feeder.


The relay box to switch the two antennas from the computer.

Antennas (VHF/UHF): Slim Jim (70cm), 5-ele beam (70cm) and a half wave dipole for 2m.

VSWR meters: Revex W570, and three home brew HF digital VSWR meters.

My website: www.skunkworx.co.uk



114821 Last modified: 2013-09-15 20:04:32, 3981 bytes

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