Japan Ham Fair 2014 Odaiba (Tokyo)

Odaiba is sick…the tokyonians created an artificial island that includes a statue of liberty and the stupid-crazy Santa Claus Club but the did host the Japan Ham Fair. This is a must to be on target for the new ham radio offerings from JA country

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Generated by IJG JPEG Library

statue of liberty odaiba

The biggest announcement was the AOR multimode digital scanner and the Yaesu Fusion modes

j1 j2 j3 j4 j5 j6 j7 j9 j10 j11 j12 j13 tiara j14 j15 j16 j17 j18 j19 j20 j21 j22

WWV Time Station 20 Mhz Transmitter Collins HF-8010A

In 2010, I was attending a workshop to become a certified Pizzaiolo and had an enjoyable time in Boulder, CO

I was within driving distance of WWV so I decided to make the trip and also check out the Rocky Mountain State Park

I can assure you that my career as a SWL would have had me pick up the time signals from its current location

A drive out there was awesome among the colorado peaks but I was not able to get a tour of the facility but enjoyed seeing the huge antennas. You could almost feel the time signals being received on my cavities in my teeth and naturally my Icom R20 radio was overloaded by the strong signals

WWV has a history that dates back to the early days of radio broadcasting. The call letters WWV were assigned to the National Bureau of Standards in October 1919. The station began testing from Washington, D.C. in May 1920 on a frequency of about 600 Khz using 50W of power.

In 1932, the station was relocated to Beltsville, Maryland.

In 1933, the station was broadcasting 30 kW on 5 , 10 and 15 MHz broadcasts

In 1966, the station was relocated to Fort Collins, Colorado.

The LF station WWVB went on the air in July 1963

NIST radio station WWV broadcasts time and frequency information 24 hours per day, 7 days per week to millions of listeners worldwide.  The broadcast information includes time announcements, standard time intervals, standard frequencies, UT1 time corrections, a BCD time code, geophysical alerts and marine storm warnings.

WWV transmits  10,000 W on 5, 10, and 15 MHz; and 2500 W on 2.5 and 20 MHz.

The WWV antennas are half-wave vertical antennas that radiate omnidirectional patterns. There are actually five antennas at the station site, one for each frequency. . Each antenna is mounted on a tower that is approximately one half-wavelength tall. The tallest tower, for 2.5 MHz, is about 60 m tall. The shortest tower, for 20 MHz, is about 7.5 m tall. The top half of each antenna is a quarter-wavelength radiating element. The bottom half of each antenna consists of nine quarter-wavelength wires that connect to the center of the tower and slope downwards to the ground at a 45 degree angle. This sloping skirt functions as the lower half of the radiating system and also guys the antenna.

WWV Antenna Coordinates 

40° 40′ 55.2″ N 105° 02′ 31.3″ W

wwv image08967 fort_collins_artist_conception




wwv transmitter 20mhz

wwv time pips


QRP Battery Ideas

After a deluge of inquiries and promises about a discussion of my new battery ideas, go grab a coffee and lets get this done!

I still use the heavy SLA batteries but wanted something a bit more lighter (actually a lot lighter) and something that was field packable.

The Duratrax DTX1866 LiPO battery caught my eye as it was around $50 and was 11.1V and 5A. That was a perfect voltage for the KX3 and FT-817. I bought two of them and they are actually a 3 pole affair which means 3 lipo batteries out together to make 1 pack. This is important because you need a special charger and the batteries need to be balanced.

dtx1866 lipo

I also use a Saratoga Power meter ( I NEED THE MANUAL FOR THIS CAN ANYONE HELP?????) as well as the older Astro Flight. Both work fine and the Astro Flight got the anderson pole mod. I also made up a homebrew version using an ebay power meter special panel meter as below:

homebrew power meter

If you wish to keep the Duratrax battery as stock then also but the pigtail connector and add a power pole of your choice

close up adapter duratrax

The saratoga Power meter I need a manual for. It is Anderson Pole enabled alreadysaratoga power meter

The AStro Flight offers additional information including power drawnastroflite power analyzer

I have two chargers for these batteries. The Venom is a simple 2-3 pole charger so it works fine but the Turnigy AccuCell 6 is better as it also does SLA and Nicads along with LiPo and can do up to 6 poles I think. You need to provide a 12v source so you will be cobbling up some adapters for the included wiring harness. I think this was around $30.

venom 2-3 cell battery charger


turnigy accucell 6

You will also need a tester for the LiPo and its a simple $2 one from eBay. It will check all 3 poles and then test each bowl individually. Because, we have a battery pack made up of 3 individual packs, it is important to ensure that they are balanced and all charged to the same voltage. The special charger will balance the batteries.

lipo battery tester


lipo exploded

You will also need some power distribution panels. Again Saratoga Power and a Rig Runner. You can make your own as wellpower distribution

I also have a bag full of gadgets and cables and i did make my own 4×4 anderson pole splitter with blue ends in the photo as well as a voltage reducer, and voltage tester. See AD5X for details….http://www.ad5x.com/images/Articles/Vreducer.pdf.

The bag also has a fuse holder using the mini car fuses. These plastic zip bags are used for make up and i got mine at the Dollar Tree in Sunnyvale, CA

power gadgets

The power meter above was from walmart and i just cut the cigarette lighter plug off and gave it the Mr. Anderson treatment

Any questions or comments, likes, dislikes or even snide remarks are most welcome

73 and Happy Power

John ve3ips

QRP in The Field


Canadian Antenna Launcher – Garage Special

Air powered antenna launchers?

Alan has the real deal USA style http://www.antennalaunchers.com/antlaunching.html


Sling Shot powered antenna launchers?

http://www.ezhang.com/ and yes he has a patent



Try the canadian boys garage special. yeah thats right a Hockey Puck

Snap on some Paracord and give it a whirl and launch this puppy up high into the trees and pull up that end fed or dipole and go make some contacts. Its very simple for a canadian boy to find a puck any where even the dollar store but it may be a challenge for the hams in Alabama or other non-hockey states. I am sure the Dollar Tree in Buffalo, NY will stock a Sabres version.

puck launcher

IP30z Antenna Analyzer Review

If you are operating out in the field or just need a swr meter for the home base station then the iPortable IP30Z swr analyzer may be just the thing you need.

I use it all the time with my various field qrp antennas most notably the Buddipole and Buddistick

I bought it direct from iPortable years ago and has been a trusted tool for me and is small and compact enough to fit in an Otterbox. Note the knob protrudes so i drilled out a hole on the box and glued a bottle cap to cover it.

This thing just works reliably and has out performed the chinese junk I tried out with graphing displays in the past. The 9V battery lasts a long time and no need to charge up any internal batteries or the such.

Turn it on and it comes to 20m by default and then just press the band button to switch bands and then adjust your step size and tune across to check your swr.

The newer analyzers have a sweeping display but then i dont need to want to have to worry about the batteries being charged up before using it.

ip30 swr analyzer

http://www.iportableus.com/_mgxroot/page_10743.html $229 US