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N8HM USA flag USA

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QSL image for N8HM

I was first licensed as KC8NGY in October 1999 at the age of 14. I upgraded to Extra in April 2000 and received the call AB8HM in June of that year. Later that year, I applied for the callsign N8HM. My station at that time consisted of a Kenwood TS-440S/AT and an MFJ-1798 80m-2m vertical antenna. I worked over 150 DXCC entities with that setup, but my interest in ham radio drifted somewhat and I was mostly inactive from 2002 through 2011.

In November 2010, I moved to a studio apartment with a balcony in Washington, DC. I realized that the balcony would be perfect for getting back on the air and purchased a Yaesu FT-817ND. I had always loved the idea of a virtually handheld sized DC-to-Daylight rig since it's introduction in 2000 and finally purchased it.

All QSOs from December 2011 through February 2012 were made with the Yaesu FT-817ND, a SignaLink USB, and an AlexLoop Walkham Portable Magnetic Loop Antenna that works on 40m-10m. After spending a year 100% QRP and achieving QRP DXCC with that setup, I decided to go back to higher power. I purchased an MFJ-1786 magnetic loop (as the AlexLoop only handles up to 20 watts) and took the Kenwood TS-440S/AT out of storage. Unfortunately, my trusty old TS-440S/AT died in October 2012 and was replaced with a Yaesu FT-450D.

Current station at N8HM - Top left: SignaLink USB Digital Interface, Bottom left: MFJ-1786 Super Hi-Q Loop Remote Control, Center: Yaesu FT-450D HF/50MHz Transceiver

MFJ-1786 Super Hi-Q Loop mounted on an MFJ-1918 tripod on my balcony.

View from the street of MFJ-1786 Super Hi-Q Loop mounted on an MFJ-1918 tripod on my balcony.


The antenna is lowered when not in use.

My main ham radio interests are satellites, HF DXing, and contesting. With this station, I have worked WAS, WAC, and 157 DXCC entities (106 worked QRP).

My six meter antenna is a Blue Collar Ants Model 6A Magnetic Loop.

Blue Collar Ants Model 6A Magnetic Loop

When ARISSat-1 was deployed from the International Space Station in August of 2011, I got interested in amateur satellites. I purchased an Arrow 146/437-10WBP antenna and went out to the courtyard of my apartment building to listen to a few passes of ARISSat-1. I copied two SSTV images as well, though I wasn't using an audio cable to record the passes, so they are a bit noisy.

SSTV Image from the ARISSat-1 +Y camera on 18-Aug-2011

SSTV Image from the ARISSat-1 -Z camera on 18-Aug-2011

My Arrow antenna was dormant until September of 2012 when I made 7 QSOs via AO-27 from my parent's house in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (EN75). After that, I began to get more interested in satellite operation. I ran across WD9EWK's YouTube video and saw that he had operated the linear transponder satellites using a Kenwood TH-F6A HT as a downlink receiver, so I purchased one and attempted to make some QSOs. I struggled through a couple of QSOs with K4FEG and NS1Z. I continued to listen to passes, but lost interest somewhat until Field Day in June of 2013 when I again attempted to work a couple of passes. Unfortunately, I was not successful, but I learned about how to work the International Space Station digipeater and successfully digipeated a couple of packets and even made a few two-way QSOs.

To operate via the International Space Station's digipeater, PCSAT (NO-44), and other satellites with AX.25 digipeaters, I first used a Yaesu FT-817ND, Arrow antenna, and an HTC One V Android smartphone running APRSDroid. I now own a Kenwood TH-D7A(G) and will use that in conjunction with an Arrow antenna either alone or with a Dell Venue 8 Pro tablet.

Screenshot of APRSDroid showing my packet being digipeated by the International Space Station.

My current satellite equipment consists of a Yaesu FT-817ND, a Yaesu FT-817 (with blown finals, used as the downlink receiver), and either an Elk 2M/440L5 Log Periodic Antenna or an Arrow 146/437-10BP. I also use a High Sierra Microwave LNAA146FIL filtered preamp with about 15 dB of gain and a 2 dB noise figure for 2 meters and a High Sierra Microwave LNAA432 with about 19 dB of gain and a 0.53 dB noise figure for 70cm. Before I obtained the second FT-817, I used an Icom IC-R10 handheld communications receiver as the downlink receiver. All satellite operation is done from the courtyard and parking lot of my apartment building using the setup below. With this setup, I've worked 49 states (missing Hawaii), 4 Canadian provinces (British Columbia, Manitoba, Newfoundland, and Ontario), and 29 DXCC entities on 4 continents (Alaska, Azores, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Canary Islands, Cayman Islands, Colombia, Cuba, Denmark, Dominica, England, Finland, France, Germany, Guatemala, Ireland, Madeira Island, Mexico, Netherlands, Portugal, Puerto Rico, St. Pierre & Miquelon, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, United States, U. S. Virgin Islands, and Venezuela).

My portable satellite station

On February 23, 2014, I conducted a demonstration at the Vienna Wireless Winterfest in Annandale, VA demonstrating portable satellite operations. Below is a video of me working W1AW/8 in Michigan on VO-52:

Working W1AW/8 in Michigan on VO-52 from the Vienna Wireless Winterfest

Below is audio from my first satellite DX QSO, with PV8DX on AO-7 Mode B, my first AO-7 Mode A QSO with AC0RA, a QSO via FO-29 with YV6BFE, and my first transatlantic QSO on AO-7 Mode B with EI5EV:

 

 

 

To receive the AO-7 Mode A downlink, I used my AlexLoop Walkham Portable Magnetic Loop. It did a reasonably good job given the high urban noise levels.

AlexLoop Walkham Portable Magnetic Loop on a tripod to receive the AO-7 Mode A 10m downlink, Arrow 146/437-10WBP for the 2m uplink.

Grids worked via satellite as of 16-Aug-2014 (321 worked in 29 fields / 269 confirmed / 152 awarded)

I QSL 100% via eQSL.cc, LoTW, and the QRZ.com Logbook. I will also respond to 100% of paper QSL requests received.

Hope to work you soon. 73!

Awards:

ARRL DX Century Club (Mixed, 144) (#45,125)
ARRL DX Century Club (Digital, 111) (#3,357)
ARRL DX Century Club (Phone, 110) (#41,761)
ARRL DX Century Club (20 Meters, 118) (November 14, 2012)
ARRL DX Century Club (15 Meters, 100) (March 4, 2014)
ARRL DX Century Club (10 Meters, 100) (#35,023)
ARRL VHF/UHF Century Club (Satellite, 176) (#248)
ARRL Worked All States (Basic) (#56,354)
ARRL Worked All States (Digital) (June 14, 2012)
ARRL Worked All States (Digital-JT65) (December 19, 2012)
ARRL DXCC Millenium Award (September 2000)
ARRL QRP DXCC (November 2011)
ARRL Diamond DXCC Challenge (107) (July 26, 2012)
AMSAT Satellite Communicators' Club
AMSAT OSCAR Satellite Communications Acheivement Award (#561)
AMSAT OSCAR Sexagesimal Award (#166)
AMSAT Robert W. Barbee Jr. (W4AMI) Satellite Operator Achievement Award (1,000) (#82)
South Africa AMSAT Satellite Communication Achievement Award (#US189)
JARL Amateur-Satellite "Fuji" Award (November 7, 2013)
SATPX Award (#012)
The Star Comm Group Got Grids? Award (#6)
The Star Comm Group 5 in EM55 Award (#49)
IARU Worked All Continents (Basic) (June 14, 2012)
CQ WPX (Mixed, 682, North American and European Continental Endorsements, 20m Band Endorsement) (#2,207)
CQ WPX (Digital, 512, North American and European Continental Endorsements) (#79)
CQ WPX Honor Roll (Mixed, 682)
CQ DX Field (Mixed, 50) (#130)
DARC Worked All Europe III (Mixed - 49 countries, 149 points) (#185)
DARC Worked All Europe III (Digital - 46 countries, 115 points) (#8)
DARC European DX Diploma (Mixed) (#960)
DARC European DX Diploma (CW) (#1389)
eQSL.cc eDX (100)
eQSL.cc eDX100 (Mixed, 100)
eQSL.cc ePFX300 (Mixed, 500)
eQSL.cc eWAS
eQSL.cc eWAS JT65
eQSL.cc eCanada (11)
ISS Fan Club ISS Achievement Award (Packet, SWL) (#248)
30 Meter Digital Group ITU Zone Award ITU-15 (#1,060)
30 Meter Digital Group WAC (#802)
30 Meter Digital Group CQZ-10 Award (#1,244)
30 Meter Digital Group Brass PA-100 (#1,316)
30 Meter Digital Group 30-30 Award (#1,771)
30 Meter Digital Group 10-EU Award (#1,697)
 
Top Contest Finishes:
 
2011 ARRL International DX Contest , CW - 1st Place Maryland-DC Section SOAB QRP
2011 ARRL International DX Contest , SSB - 1st Place Maryland-DC Section SOAB QRP
2011 CQ WPX SSB Contest - 2nd Place US 3rd Call Area (10th Place North America) SOAB QRP
2011 CQ WW DX RTTY Contest - 1st Place US 3rd Call Area SO 10m LP
2011 CQ WW DX SSB Contest - 1st Place US 3rd Call Area SOAB QRP
2011 ARRL 10 Meter Contest - 1st Place Maryland-DC Section SO SSB QRP
2011 Ten-Meter RTTY Contest - 1st Place, Single Operator, District of Columbia
2011 RAC Canada Winter Contest - 1st Place US 3rd Call Area SOAB QRP
2012 CQ WPX RTTY Contest - 1st Place US 3rd Call Area (2nd Place North America, 9th Place World) SOSB 15m QRP
2012 ARRL International DX Contest, CW - 1st Place Maryland-DC Section SOAB QRP
2012 CQ WW 160 Meter DX Contest, SSB - 1st Place District of Columbia SOHP (Assisted) (Op at W3DQ)
2012 ARRL International DX Contest, SSB - 1st Place Atlantic Division SOAB QRP
2012 CQ WW VHF Contest - 1st Place Maryland/DC SO QRP
2012 Hawaii QSO Party - 1st Place Class D - Digital Only, W3 Call Area
 
Club Memberships:
 
Potomac Valley Radio Club
American Radio Relay League
30 Meter Digital Group (#5,898)
AMSAT-NA (#38,913)
AMSAT-UK
 
Former Club Memberships:
 
Michigan State University Amateur Radio Club
Utica Shelby Emergency Communications Association
L'Anse Creuse Amateur Radio Club
 
Portable Operations:
 
Please note that QSOs made from outside the District of Columbia will be confirmed via paper QSL and LoTW, but not eQSL until eQSL designs a better system for portable confirmations. Portable QSOs will not appear in ClubLog or Hamlog.eu.
 
6/17/11 - Pedestrian mobile from the Pacific coast of Oregon (south of Seaside, OR). Worked NH6I on 17m SSB. Antenna: AlexLoop.
12/23/11 - Worked 15m and 20m PSK31 from Clinton Township, MI (EN82). Antenna: AlexLoop.
12/26/11 - Worked 15m and 20m JT65 from Clinton Township, MI (EN82). Antenna: AlexLoop.
9/3/12 - Worked 40m SSB and 20m RTTY from Detour Township, MI (EN75). Antenna: 102' doublet.
9/5/12 - Worked 30m JT65 and 40m PSK31 from Detour Township, MI (EN75). Antenna: 102' doublet.
9/5/12 - Made my first satellite QSO with K8YSE via AO-27 from Detour Township, MI (EN75). Antenna: Arrow.
9/6/12 - Worked six grids via AO-27 from Detour Township, MI (EN75). Antenna: Arrow.
9/6/12 - Worked 12m, 15m, and 17m SSB while sitting on the deck from Detour Township, MI (EN75). Antenna: AlexLoop.
9/7/12 - Worked 20m JT65 from Detour Township, MI (EN75). Antenna: AlexLoop.
9/8/12 - Made 5 QSOs in the WAE SSB contest while standing in the driveway in Clinton Township, MI (EN82). Antenna: AlexLoop.
6/22/13 - Made 11 QSOs from Fort Washington National Park in Fort Washington, MD during ARRL FIeld Day. Antenna: AlexLoop.
11/27/13 - 11/30/13 - Made several satellite QSOs from Clinton Township, MI (EN82)
12/21/13 - 12/27/13 - Made several satellite QSOs from Clinton Townhip, MI (EN82)
12/29/13 - 1/3/14 - Made several satellite QSOs from Emerald Isle, NC (FM14)
2/23/14 - Made 13 QSOs on passes of VO-52 and FO-29 while conducting a demo at the Vienna Wireless Winterfest in Annandale, VA (FM18jt)
 

 

1200600 Last modified: 2014-08-20 12:32:22, 15830 bytes

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