In the Park – A Quiet Field Day 2012

Field Day 2012 was a quick, quiet and quite effective event.

With the W9DK Mancorad Radio Club in a local park.

The spot we had scouted out, AND its backup were both full of people. Unexpected, but hey – isn’t that what Field Day is supposed to be about?

We found a new spot that worked out just fine.

I had brought my Go-Kit primary antenna setup – a Hamstick Dipole which I have very carefully tuned using a Timewave AmtennaSmith TZ-900 to balance between the sides of the dipole.

K9ZW Hamstick Dipole in Action

K9ZW Hamstick Dipole in Action

Getting the antenna in the air is some of my supply of US Army surplus camouflage support poles – usually I use five to seven poles for an effective height of 15 to 21 feet. (Not the lamp post is much further away than it shows in the photograph).

I use a Black & Decker Workmate portable workbench as the antenna mast base, using clamps to lock everything together. When i operate alone I set up directly on the bend, and put my heavy aircraft batteries on the lower shelf to add stability. For Field Day we set up on a park picnic bench 40 feet away.

An extra clamp on one of the mast sections works ok as a rotor of sort. This “Armstrong Rotor” is not precision, but we are swinging a dipole, not a beam.

I did bring a new to me used TenTec Jupiter setup, though never got it out as we used one o fthe club radios – a Kenwood TS-440 that does an excellent job.

Interesting experiment was the huge drop in noise level when we added basic station grounding.

All in all a good time, simple style of operation (we even paper logged our QSOs) and relaxing until I was called away to rescue a family member who was broken down on the Interstate south of town.

A great day in the Park!



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