I started in Amateur Radio as a teenager in the 1970s while living in the former Czechoslovakia. I used to be passionate about contesting and DXing.
I immigrated to Canada in 1986, got married, started a family, my interests changed, and I stayed QRT for 27 years.
Now, almost 3 decades later, I've got the urge to return back to the hobby. I erected a vertical antenna in my back yard, but the noise level from various electrical appliances in the neighborhood sometimes reaches 9 s-units. There is no hope for any serious DX work in this QTH so I decided to build a remote QTH. The equipment will be operated via the Internet. This is my project for the next few months.
The photo below shows a test on the kitchen table. I'm able to operate, via the Internet, everything I need: transceiver, rotator, and CAT control. This is just a test. The rest of the equipment (rotator, etc.) sits on the floor in another room.
The following pictures show the tower that will be used for this project. The photo shows the tower in its lowered position (the vertical part is just a gin pole). It's a 100 ft (30 m) tower that used to support a 50 kW (3000 lbs / 1500 kgs) wind turbine.
The remote QTH is on a farm about 180 kilometers (110 miles) by car from my home. It takes me 3 hours to get there, and then another 3 hours back home. I'm hoping the antenna will be up before the first snow arrives.
The equipment will be housed in the NEMA 3R electrical enclosure depicted on the three photos below.
Allan (above), Dave, and I just mounted the enclosure to the base of the tower. It's a vented enclosure, and the black round thing inside the top is an electrical fan 10 inches in diameter (or 25 centimeters). A thermostat will turn the fan on and off as well as it will control its speed.
Bob (on picture below) has fabricated the rotor cage. Inside the cage is a Hy-Gain T-2x rotor. The antenna mast you see on the photo is about 10 feet (3 meters) long.
The following picture shows the rotor cage being temporarily attached to the top of the tower. Again Bob is in photo, and again I failed to take a good picture of him, sorry!
Originally I was going to get the rotor cage hot-dip galvanized, but it would delay the project by at least two weeks so I decided against it (winter is just around the corner). I will just spray it with cold-galvanizing spray for now.
My new Hy-Gain 5 element monoband 14 MHz Yagi antenna "Long John" LJ-205CA has arrived:
And here is the antenna assembled. The next step will be to bring it to the 100 foot height.
Will this winch be able to tilt the 100 foot 3.5 ton tower up?
A brief test shows that the winch has no problem at all with the heavy tower.
As of December 4, the antenna has been placed on the tower, and the tower has been erected, The SWR seems OK, the rotator works, and now it's just a matter of getting the internet to the tower, and configuring the RemoteRig equipment. If all goes well, the internet should be there within a day or two. I will then try to find the time to go there to configure it for remote operation, and the project will be completed.
73 Marvin VE3VEE
Last modified: 2013-12-05 10:40:48, 4736 bytes cached
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