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QSL direct or LoTW. Please, no bureau cards! I no longer have an account.

Home station: Elecraft K3, Drake L7, TH6DXX @ 48', 40m vertically polarized Delta Loop apex @ 46' and dipole @ 32', 80m wire vertical with 60 radials, 160m inverted L with 97 radials, K9AY RX antennas, N1MM Logger.

My previous mobile station: Elecraft K3, KA8KIP Eliminator screwdriver, N1MM Logger and 2008 Pontiac Torrent. The antenna was mounted to a hitch receiver welded at an angle to the end of the trailer hitch. This allowed me to open the hatch with the antenna in place.

My current mobile station: Elecraft K3, KA8KIP Eliminator screwdriver, N1MM Logger and a 2014 Toyota RAV4. I changed from the short whip with caphat to a 96" whip. This whip gives me fewer turns for resonance on each band and I'm still able to keep under 13' 6" when retracted. Although I can't open the hatch with the antenna in place, a big plus of this installation is that I can view my band markers taped to the antenna through the rear window. At night I press the brake pedal to turn on the third brake light and they are nicely illuminated. I'll have to work on a tilt mechanism so I can get in the hatch easier.

 

I modified the screwdriver antenna as follows: replaced the toroidal matching transformer with a simple shunt coil, replaced the screwdriver motor with a planetary gearmotor and flexible rubber shaft coupling, bonded the fingerstock to the top of the mast and added a hose clamp "hard stop" at the lower limit of the coil. The clamp prevents the coil from spinning at the lowest point and not extending up. Overall, the screwdriver antenna works very well for me and I especially like the copper mast (low resistance) where the highest antenna current is.

 

I started shortwave listening on my parent's Grundig AM/FM/SW/phonograph console stereo. I remember listening to some hams on 40m AM and also many SSB stations that were unintelligible, of course. My Dad got me a Knight-Kit Star Roamer, which was my first electronic construction project. I later talked him into a Hammarlund HQ-200 (wish I still had it). In 1972 I received my Novice (WN2FNS) license after some elmering by George, WB2EUV. George also helped me construct my first electronic keyer. I was using a bug up until that time. The TX was a Johnson Adventurer with three crystals, one for 80m, one for 40m and one that worked on the third harmonic for 15m. The RX was a Heathkit SB-101. Less than a year later I was a General with the callsign WB2FNS. I then graduated through Advanced and Extra, taking all exams at the FCC office in downtown Buffalo. That was very intimidating for a teenager. My next rig was a Drake B-line and after a short time off the air, I was back on with a borrowed Hallicrafters pair. In 1976, I changed from the long, terrible callsign (WB2FNS) to N2CU. I purchased a Kenwood TS-820S at the Dayton Hamvention and kept that rig until late in the 1990's. I got married in 1982 and purchased a home a few years later. I became a proud papa of two wonderful children. I was off the air from 1982 until 1997 when I built a new home on a hilltop and put up a Gap Challenger, fired up the TS-820S and rediscovered the magic of ham radio. I haven't looked back since. A Yaesu FT-1000MP replaced the good old 820. After becoming a member of the W2FU Contest Team, I bought an Elecraft K3. What a great radio! I took up 160m DX'ing several years ago and now have 206 DXCC entities on "Top Band". I love mobile contesting and have several plaques from the NY, PA and OH QSO Parties. I am a member of the Niagara Frontier Radiosport club.

Other interests are metal detecting, bicycling and fishing, when there's time!

8574025 Last modified: 2018-01-11 15:09:36, 4370 bytes

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