Good Amateur Practice is: (By Riley Hollingsworth)

Good Amateur Practice is: (By Riley Hollingsworth)

  • Giving a little ground–even if you have a right not to–in order to help preserve Amateur Radio and not cause it to get a bad name or hasten the day when it becomes obsolete.
  • Respecting band plans, because they make it possible for every mode to have a chance.
  • Not transmitting a 6-kHz bandwidth signal when there are lots of people on the band.
  • Not acting like an idiot just because you were stepped on.
  • Being aware that we all love Amateur Radio, and there’s no need to damage or disgrace it just to save face.
  • Keeping personal conflicts off the air. Settle your arguments on the telephone, the Internet or in person. Just keep them off the air
  • Cutting a net or a contester a break, even if you don’t have to and even if you have no interest whatsoever in nets or contesting.
  • Operating so that if a neighbor, niece or nephew or news reporter hears you, that person will be impressed with Amateur Radio.
  • Realizing that every right carries responsibilities, and just because you may have a right to do certain things doesn’t mean it’s right to do them in every circumstance.
  • You don’t “own” or get preference to use any frequency even though you’ve been on the same spot every morning for years shooting the breeze with Harry.
  • Not operating so that whoever hears you becomes sorry they ever got into Amateur Radio in the first place.

The Radio Amateur is: (By Paul M. Segal, W9EEA)

The Radio Amateur is: (By Paul M. Segal, W9EEA)

CONSIDERATE….. never knowingly operating in such a way as to lessen the pleasure of others.
LOYAL….. offering loyalty, encouragement and support to other amateurs, local clubs and the American Radio Relay League, through which Amateur Radio in the United States is represented nationally and internationally.
PROGRESSIVE….. with knowledge abreast of science, a well built and efficient station, and operation beyond reproach.
FRIENDLY….. with slow and patient operation when requested, friendly advice and counsel to the beginner, kindly assistance, cooperation and consideration for the interests of others. These are the hallmarks of the amateur spirit.
BALANCED….. Radio is an avocation, never interfering with duties owed to family, job, school or community.
PATRIOTIC….. with station and skill always ready for service to country and community.

QRP Labs U3 kit tracking Canadian C3 expedition

also check the RAC website

U3S kit tracking Canadian C3 expedition

QRP Labs is proud to sponsor the Canadian C3 Coast-to-Coast-to-Coast expedition celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday, by providing an Ultimate3S kit and accessories (QLG1 GPS receiver kit, relay switched filter board, 20/30/40m Low Pass Filter kits, and enclosure kit.

From the C3 website: “A Canada 150 Signature project, Canada C3 is a 150-day expedition (June 1 to October 28) from Toronto to Victoria via the Northwest Passage. It will inspire a deeper understanding of our land, our peoples and our country.”

The successful C3 amateur radio proposal was made by QRP Labber Barrie VE3BSB who led the team who installed the Ultimate3S and antennas onboard the Polar Prince. The Ultmate3S transmits in Extended WSPR mode (with 6-character Maidenhead locator) 24 hours a day autonomously, on 40, 30 and 20m. QRP Labs provided a tracking solution that populates a live map at – Jeff VE3EFF has provided a computer and stable internet connection to run the tracking.


Simple Field Ops Antenna

I was in Austin, TX and brought my FT-817 along for repeater use and listening to SWBC and QRP contacts on the cw net.

Well I forgot my Buddipole and found a Dollar Tree nearby.

I bought some speaker wire, electrical tape, some thin cord and tie wraps = $3 US

Here is what I did:

I just coiled the wire to make a 1/4 wave long wire. I used whatever length of speaker wire coiled up to match the band. 32 feet for 40m and 16 feet for 20m. The tie wraps work as insulators.
I use the thin cord with a water bottle on one end of it, I toss it up into a tree or bounce it on the roof, attach the free end of the wire to my cord and pull it up. Clip the 1/4 wave length wire to my rig and use the built in meter to check swr
Add a similar length of counterpose or ground wire and everything will work
This is a simple, light weight, very cheap, system, that is very fast
on putting it up and taking it down, and lets you get on the air to make contacts.

When done pull it all in so no one gets excited


Indoor Stealth Antenna – Hotels, Motels, Apartments, Condos and Nursing Homes

I have been using a super simple antenna for indoor use that fits in a zip lock bag and just needs masking or duct tape.

I run the wire around the perimeter of the room and feed it with speaker wire (do not split the wire as it stays as is to mimic a 300 ohm twinlead) or 300 ohm twinlead. Depending on the tuner you use a balun 4:1 may be needed.

My MFJ balanced line tuner, Elecraft T1 and LDG Z11 and various baluns all work well with this antenna.


You can also run the loop in a square or oval on a wall or in the ceiling or round a balcony

The SGC manual is another great resource for goofy loop antennas.

Click to access stealthman.pdf

Experimentation is your friend here and its no different than the SOE boys in ww2


What is the Best Antenna for Balcony Use?

I was asked the question: ‘what antenna would you recommend for use on typical hotel/apartment/condo balcony?’

Here are the replies:

For a portable I have two wires that are center loaded. Each wire consists of two-8ft-6in wires with a center coil consisting of 20 turns of wire on a 1-1/12 in PVC pipe form about 3 inches long. It is fed with 300 ohm line and a tuner.

For your balcony you can hang one out the balcony and lay the other on the floor, hang it as a vertical dipole if you can get it to the upper balcony, or even string or snake it out on the floor of the room (both legs).

It tunes up nice on 40M and 20M. Quite versatile and compact to carry.


For portable operation, I use 2 (Hamstick) Mobile Antennas with an adapter to configure them as a loaded dipole.

Mine are for 40M. This setup with an ATU allows me to work 40 & 20 Meters.

I use a Camera Tripod for support.

I have used this setup in Motels/Hotels with my SW-40+, SST-40 or OHR Explorer for 20M.

I usually place the tripod on top of the Bureau (Dresser?)..

I’m sure this same method can be used for a balcony.

Rick – WA8RXI Taylor, MI. USA

Is light weight, portable and takes up no room! That’s right, a dipole! There are all kinds of trick ways of putting it up, both inside and outside. The best is what ever you can get away with! I have taken a closet pole out for a center mast and run the antenna wily nilly up down , back and forth and it works with some kind of cheap tuner! Open wire feeders OF COURSE! 450 ohm is best, but 300 ohm will surely work and at qrp levels even RG-174U in a pinch. Center insulator, a large shirt button, end insulator, a small sleeve button. what holds it up, well, mono filament fishing line is fine but string will work in a pinch. If you must throw it over a roof or something poke a hole through a tennis ball and use that! also works great if high in a hotel and must drop out a window. Much better than a lag bolt or large NUT that will swing and break a window at worst or bang and rattle in the wind on some poor soles window below you!

These tricks have worked in Hawaii, Florida and Ecuador for me. If I have room I carry a backpackers fishing pole that collapses to one foot long and extends to around 8 feet long. Great for casting fishing line through TREES and even can substitute for a center mast on a balcony!

Walt K8CV

The only reasonable balcony mount antenna is a either an end fed wire or some sort of mobile antenna. The end fed wire is the simpplest but is dependent upon a support at the far end. I do not condone just dropping a wire out of a window.

Almost any mobile antenna works in this application and someone makes a screw on mount that will hold it on a balcony rail. I have seen and used Outbackers and others.

A good ground makes up the system. It can be as easy as 5 or 7 wire rotator cable trimmed for each band or a 15 or 20 foot piece of wire and a ground tuner. In either case it can be run around the baseboard.


Bruce Muscolino

The best I have found for convenience is a Hustler Resonator set. I have a set of resonators for 15m, 20m & 40m that can either be run separately on the base whip or run altogether (similar to a Spider Antenna – only MUCH cheaper) with a $6.00 three-resonator adapter plate. If you mount three bands on the one base “stick” remember to tune up the lowest frequency resonator first and work your way upwards through the other resonators in order of increasing frequency.

The base “stick” is about 48″ long and the resonators average about 18″ to 24″ apiece with their little tuning whips. You will need a standard 3/8″-24 threaded mount (I use the mag mount from the car) to keep the antenna assembly vertical and the connector to feed it with coax.

Since it is basically a 1/4 wave vertical you have to either work it against a ground plane (believe it or not, a regular $3.00 “Space Blanket” with the aluminized side face down works pretty well as the surface resistance of the aluminized size is REALLY low – just a few ohms per inch) or if your balcony is up a bit you can dangle down a counterpoise suitable for the lowest frequency you are working. If you have a steel railing on the balcony that’ll probably provide enough of a counterpoise.

I purchased my set of Hustler resonators, the base “stick” and adapter plate from Texas Towers for about $100.00 for the whole show. So it turned out pretty inexpensive for a compact 3-band antenna. Of course it makes an excellent mobile antenna too!

Hope that helps “balcony operators” out there. 🙂

David Gwillim


The B&W model AP-10 that covers 40 through 2 meters is made to order for balconys.

Mine fits in a med sized suitcase and lays flat in a plastic ZipLock bag about 8X10 inches and about 2.5 inches thick. Has everything in the bag including counterpoise.

73 Bill WJ5O

Read an article a while back describing a hamstick mount for balcony use. Hamsticks are those fiberglass poles for mobile HFing with wire wound ’round them and a stainless steel whip at the top. Basically this fellow took a metal electrical box and mounted a standard mobile antenna mount on it, and attached radials to it. Then, he put the box in a flowerpot, with the radials coming out the sides of the flowerpot. Finally, the filled the flowerpot with cement, making sure the mobile mount (but not the electrical box) was exposed and level.

Hamsticks here are about $20 US, so it’s bit on the high side if you are wanting to go multiband.

I suppose this mount would also work with any mobile HF antenna available, so if you ever do any mobiling you might already have a suitable antenna!

72/73 Chris AA9HD

I use an Outbacker TriSplit, which breaks up into three two-foot sections and tucks nicely into a small vinyl case. It covers all the HF bands quite nicely.

The problem is that you need a ground plane, of course. I’ve used a scrap piece of sheet metal (mine came from my uncle’s air conditioning business), but that is fairly heavy and cumbersome, at least for someone my size. It does work well, though.

72/73, Caity KU4QD

I have used a Buddistick (HB and CB versions), with great success and the antenna fits inside a carry on suitcase.

It does need a counterpoise of course and the mini coil makes it great fro 20-10m

I also use a inside loop fed with twinled

72/73, John VE3IPS


I have been using my 20m shorty dipole as published in Sprat with great success.

Frank G3YCC

My thanks to the above for their input. I hope it is of use to fellow amateurs.

20 Things Youth Can do with Amatuer Radio

20 Things Youth You can do with Amateur Radio

1 Talk around the world without the internet or mobile phones
2 Use your own ‘internet’ when the other is down!
3 Send your voice, text and even pictures to unusual places, both near and far
4 Create your own network of radio amateurs and send instant text messages without phones
5 Meet amazing people from all over the country and around the world, on the air and in person at amateur radio events
6 Learn about the science that powers WiFi, smartphones, Bluetooth and all the latest wireless technologies
7 Learn how radio is used to explore outer space

8 Talk through satellites, or with astronauts on the International Space Station
9 Send messages via Morse code
10 Hunt for hidden radio transmitters – be a signal sleuth!
11 Investigate the multiple new combined radio-internet communication techniques
12 Try a modern sport – radiosport: compete on-air for awards and fun
13 Send a message around the world using less electricity than a lightbulb!

14 Provide help during emergencies with your radio
15 Use your radio to help the community at events such as marathons and bike races
16 Take a radio along with you while hiking or camping – you’ll never be out of contact
17 Collect weather and flight data by releasing and tracking a high altitude balloon
18 Build you own radio equipment and use it on air
19 Experiment with antenna systems to find the best for your interests
20 Experiment with new smartphone apps and computer programs for radio – or create your own

23cm PC Board Yagi

Is 1.2ghz or 23cm SOTA new , if so a fresh way to chase summits instead of the old 52 and a chance to revisit old summits for new contacts.

Most Casual Observer

I wanted a bit more “oomph” from my 1W 1.2 GHz HT, so I purchased a PC board Yagi to get another 6 dB.

I have a Yaesu FT-911 1.2 GHz HT. It is a 1990’s rig gifted me by the wife of a Silent Key at my work. It is a sweet handheld, but with limited power.

WA5VJB makes a variety of PC board antennas. The 1.2 GHz 3-element Yagi is $6, which was hard to resist. He also makes other nice microwave antennas: log-periodics, patch arrays, wheels, vivaldis, etc.

I went to HSC Electronic Supply and picked up a PC mount BNC and a right-angle BNC by navigating this aisle.

23cm yagi 2

I found a short, stiff BNC cable from this bin.

23cm yagi 3

I soldered on the BNC chassis connector and epoxied it to the antenna. The PC board is beat up because I’ve been carrying it around in my…

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