I have been licensed since 1979, originally as N7ATM, then as W7NX from May 1999 through July 2014, and now as KH6NX from July 18, 2014 to present. N7ATM has since been reissued.
QSL INFO: I enjoy sending and receiving actual QSL cards. LOTW and similar services are fast and easy, but I think a lot of the charm of QSL-ing is lost. So, if you want a paper QSL, I will be happy to respond. Please QSL direct. Via the Buro is okay, but will take longer. I will get to it eventually. I am now on LOTW for contacts made Starting November 2013. I will upload older logs eventually, but this is a low priority task for now. I've yielded to pressure from a few hams who have desperately wanted confirmation via eQSL.com. I update this less frequently but will usually upload my log every month or two at a minimum. I generally do not do other electronic QSL services, as it is hard for me to keep up with everything.
I completed residency training in internal medicine in June 2013, and have moved from Oregon to Hawai'i to take a position at a local hospital in Honolulu. Thus, I have changed my call sign from W7NX to KH6NX. Medicine is a second career for me. Previously I was an electrical engineer. I designed high speed computers, cameras, and radios during most of my career. In addition to my medical degree, I also hold a BS and MS in electrical engineering. My graduate work was in RF and microwave engineering and electromagnetics.
I enjoy home brewing, working DX, and I operate mainly CW. I enjoy contesting. If I am not working, I will usually be on the air for all major CW contests, either from my station or from KH6YY's super station on the North Shore. My primary station is an old FT-1000MP and an old TS-570DG in reserve. I have an FT-817 and FT-857D for portable work. The primary amp is a Yaesu VL-1000 (Quadra). The VL-1000 is a recent acquisition for me and has a few issues I am working on. My backup amp is a Drake L7 which worked flawlessly for years, except for once when the power supply exploded in a shower of sparks. This was repaired with the rebuild kit from Harbach Electronics and operation is again flawless. My main antenna is 3 element tribander at 40 feet stacked with a 3 element 6M yagi at 45 feet. I have a fixed dipole with feed point auto-tuner for 160/80/30/17/12 and a rotatable trap dipole for 40M as part of the tribander.
While still a work in progress, I have recently acquired and repaired some older gear and set up a vintage station. This currently consists of a Drake C-line "Twins:" T-4XC and R-4C, which were originally built in late 1977/early 1978. The receiver had some issues, mainly power supply feedthrough into the 3rd mixer which I spent a whole day tracking down with the spectrum analyzer. I wasn't exactly certain what would be required to fix it so I called Sherwood Engineering and spoke with Rob Sherwood. I ended up purchasing all the "Sherwood Mods." I installed them one at a time (where possible) to see how each changed the performance of the R-4C. I started with the capacitor replacement. I had to juryrig the AF amp to work, as the cap mod is supposed to work with the power supply replacment and the Sherwood AF amplifier replacement. There was no appreciable difference in the performance of my radio with the application of these mods, except for improved performance of the AF amplifier, which only served to let me hear the unwanted mixing products in higher fidelity! Those 40 year old caps were still working, but for how long? They needed to go anyway. Next I installed the replacement 3rd mixer. The difference was night and day. All of the objectionable mixing products disappeared. I had a lot of fun restoring these great old radios and getting them back on the air.
When I arrived on island, several of the local hams, in particular WH6R, pushed me toward trying vertical antennas at the seashore. Verticals at the shoreline work very well, even QRP. The antenna in the background (below) is a 15M half-wave vertical dipole, end fed, supported on a DK9SQ fiberglass mast (available from www.kangaus.com) and attached with painter's tape (foreground). This antenna is about 6dBi and has a very low angle or radiation (see pattern below). This is important from Hawaii since we are 2500 miles from anywhere. Actually, it is important from anywhere, if you want to work DX.
QRP with toes in the sand on windward Oahu using a vertical "end-fed" dipole
Technically you can't feed the actual end of a dipole, as the current is zero at that point and impedance is infinite. I'm feeding close to the end. The remainder of the dipole is either a small counterpoise, or the coax (not ideal). In this setup I was using a tuning box sold by the Emergency Amateur Radio Club (www.earchi.org) here in Honolulu. It consists of an L-network with a section of RG-174 as a capacitor and a powdered iron tordoidal inductor. There is no provision on the EARC matching networks for a counterpoise (easily added if desired) thus the coax shield will be used to complete the antenna. The purist in me does not like this approach, but this method works well. It is very fast and easy to set up, in keeping with the EARC charter of emergency preparedness. It could be improved on by addition of a choke to the coax (coil coax several times with 6-8" diameter) a foot or two from the match-box. This will decouple the remainder of the coax from the antenna system.Tuning is by adjustment of wire length. SWR is low and no additional antenna tuner is needed once tuned.
Sunrise on Kailua Beach
Many of you have commented that you enjoy the sunrise over Kailua beach photo. Here is another from a spot a little farther down the beach. It was taken at sunset.
Moonrise on Kailua Beach
73, and Aloha from Hawai'i - See you on the bands!
1701352 Last modified: 2015-02-16 02:41:10, 7891 bytes
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