NJQRP home


Saturday, July 26, 2008

Minutes by Gerry Jurrens, N2GJ and Gary Wilson, K2GW at N2ARC.


Gerry Jurrens, N2GJ
Gary Wilson, K2GW
Eric Rivas, KC2HMV
Lenny Wintfeld, W2BVH
Tom Bagdas, NU2I
Jim Dicso, K2SZ
Dave Ottenberg, WA2DJN
Vojtech Bubnick, AB2ZA
Pushpendra Khaira, AB2XF
Mike Ardovino, N2EAB
Ted Groke, W2TAG
Prasad Agrahar, AB3EH
Richard Bitzer, WB2ZKW

Meeting notes:

More photos are available on N2GJ's photo gallery.

W2BVH: Paul Wade, W1GHZ is a microwave guy who is selling printed circuit boards with space for up to 5 PowerPoles. "It's like a buss bar." The boards are only $5. Len is currently between engagements, looking for a job as a programmer: "I can write code in just about any language except Fortran and Cobol!" Please contact Len off list if you can help with leads. This is Len's first year on 6 meters and he's having a ball! He's worked about 10 European countries with his homebrew beam and 105 watt power amplifier. He also worked the "DX-pedition" on Sable Island, CY0X on 6 meters.

K2GW Brought in a supply of PowerPoles and described the different types. N2ARC, the station of the American Red Cross of Central NJ Chapter where we meet, has just purchased a new 80 amp RigRunner power distribution system to use with PowerPoles. Gary also brought the design for N2ARC emergency communications trailer (a group went outside to see the satellite dish setup and the shelves that will be moved around to distribute weight better when the ham equipment is installed). We are also looking for volunteers to help with two other emcomm projects in the region: a) moving N2ARC to its original location in the building four moves ago; b) outfitting emcomm trailers being purchased by the State of NJ Department of Health that will have 2 meter and 220 MHz ham equipment installed. The equipment is being paid for by the State, but ham volunteers will provide the labor!

K2SZ Brought in a supply of SubMinax connectors that he's selling for very reasonable prices. He has bulkhead mounts, jacks, etc., both 50 and 75 ohm versions. He's doing more with digital modes, experimenting with MultiPSK, Hamscope and others with a couple of West Mountain Radio Rigblasters. He has recently moved to a new home off the island (Long Beach Island) living in a restricted deed location. He is also experimenting with a number of stealthy antennas.

WA2DJN Brought in a set of collapsible fiberglass poles which N2GJ snatched up for $20. They can be erected as a temporary antenna mast (which N2GJ did when he got home from the meeting!). He also lives in a deed restricted home and has been experimenting with stealthy antennas. An attic antenna never worked well, but a new design for an outdoors antenna (that uses 85 feet of black small guage wire and a homemade 9:1 balun -- see this link for details).

AB3EH Built a frequency counter (based on a design by N3ZI) from 7 to 50MHz. He is also building an older design Small Wonder Labs QRP Transceiver. He is having a problem with soundcard drivers. Anyone with expertise in this area is encouraged to contact Dharma.

NU2I Announced the NJ Triathalon at Mercer County Park tomorrow, Sunday, July 27, 2008. Members of the Delaware Valley Radio Association welcome any other hams to help cover this exciting event. The communications team is meeting at the Hughes Drive entrance at 6:30 AM.

KC2HMV Is working on mostly non-radio stuff, including a frequency counter.

N2GJ Participated in the David Sarnoff Radio Club Field Day effort, operating N2RE on 40 meters CW with an FT-817 and a dipole. He also reported on the quiet repeaters in the Naples/Ft. Myers, FL area recently visited on a vacation trip.

W2TAG Ted says "Mario N2AK sends his greetings - it's his son's birthday today and he regrets that he was unable to make the meeting." Ted is playing with different schemes to provide more of a hands-free access to his mobile ham rig. He's scrapped the Bluetooth idea because of the complexity and power drain. He's built up a wired unit with a Blue Parrot headset and a couple of hefty PTT switches , one a push on/off, the other a momentary (from Radio Shack). He also built a powerful audio amp for the microphone circuit from a design he cobbled together from various web designs. He participated in Field Day with K2AA. He used an 80 meter MOXON antenna at 40-50'. He told the group about a non-ham who bought a former ham's QTH in Cape May that has 3 towers he wants removed. Contact Ted off list for details.

N2EAB Brought in a supply of "Pentium 2" devices that look like they have a great heatsink on them. They were all snatched up for free! He also brought an Eico Signal Generator to help it find a new home. It's been a few months since he has been to a meeting and during a couple of weeks vacation, continued his experiments with the toner-transfer method of creating printed circuit boards. He brought an example which was passed around and looked very good! It's from a design by KD1JV on his website. He also brought a magnetic loop antenna he built. It's for receiving only but he says it works great. It uses about 10 feet of aluminum wire.

WB2ZKW Has moved to Flemington from South Brunswick and now has a longer trip to meetings! He has met some of the people at the Cherryville Repeater Association W2CRA. His new place has no deed restrictions or CCRs, so he's looking forward to putting up some nice antennas and getting his ham equipment on the air soon. He reports that thunderstorms seem more intense in his new area than his old! He told the group a number of wonderful stories about the five or so months he spent working at the ARRL as a technical advisor (he still helps the League by reviewing technical articles proposed for publication in "QST" and "QEX"). The entire text of his article on converting the Collins KWM-2 for CW operation can be found online by clicking on this link.

AB2XF His K1 was not working right at Field Day (at N2RE) but his solar cell array was effective for charging his batteries, see photo. He fried the finals in his K2 but has replaced them with inexpensive brand-X devices. He has posted a number of promised links to the email reflector today. There are several for Softrock, making your Vista computer work better, and others. Thanks!

A discussion about the benefits of an engineering degree and training was enjoyed by all. I promised to send the link for the "US1" newspaper article about Diane Dorland, an engineer who is the Dean of Engineering at Rowan University.

AB2ZA Vojtech is going to send a link for $30 kits he's built - very nice transceivers that use an RC synthesizer that is virtually noise free (unlike some DDS designs). He is working with Softrock v. 6.2. He says a lot of info can be found on Yahoo! Groups. Some of the problems that people have with Software Defined Radios can be traced to inadequacies in the sound cards and drivers they are using. He also brought an LC meter designed by a friend of his from the Czech Republic.

Additions/corrections welcome!
Respectfully submitted,
Gerry Jurrens, N2GJ

See you all at the next meeting! (See the NJQRP Event Calendar for the full set of meeting dates.)

Last updated: July 27, 2008