Category Archives: K9ZW Operations

Tidying up is Important – K9ZW Island Rack

Sometimes the small things matter a lot.

The Island Rack basically has been put together piecemeal, and now that it is settling into an all-FlexRadio setup it was time to tidy things up.

Here is the backside of the rack:

K9ZW Island Rack – Backside View

Kind of a “So What?!” picture as I forgot to capture before tidy-up shots.

Changes made include:

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A bit of Solo Field Day – Island Operations from WI-001L

While doing other Island Shack chores, ran a bit of FT8 Field Day just to say I did something for 2021’s Field Day.

Took me a bit to remember how to set up WSJT for Field Day. Worked the treat once I remembered that in Settings–> Advanced is where the Field Day mode setting is hiding.

A rainy weekend on the island, which dashed my interest in trying some different antenna setups.

73

Steve
K9ZW

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A bit of Island (WI-001L) Operations

Been out operating FT8 from our Washington Island (Wisconsin) QTH. Antenna is a DX Engineering Hexbeam at 6 ft (yes just six feet).

“Armstrong rotator” to manually point the antenna the way I’d like it, Flex-6700 running barefoot, controlled by the little HP EliteDesk computer with the latest SmartSDR 3.2.39 software release.

I am cleaning the basement radio room, so FT8 is kind of nice as I only have to poke at the keyboard here and there. That lets me get some cleaning done at the same time as doing QSOs.

During 2020 we were seldom at our Island QTH – most just visited to do chores and left once the chores were complete.

This year we are hoping for a bit more “island time” in the mix. Having a son doing his remote grad school work from our main QTH makes leaving that QTH behind easier. If something needs rebooting he is all over it for us.

Station upgrades are in the works, with some serious antenna improvements a priority.

73

Steve
K9ZW

K9ZW Paper QSLs starting to flow

After a very long hiatus I’ve started the QSL card process. First batches will focus on responding to SASEs and a couple friends/local hams who I really owed QSL cards to.

Second prioritization are fellow veterans and received QSL cards that caught my eye.

First batch readied and went out in the mail today (08FEB21) .

Thought I had grabbed a photo of the two dozen envelopes which contained around three dozen QSL cards. Turns out through operator error I took a lovely video of some of the outgoing mail sitting patiently on my breakfast table.

Here is a picture taken from the video:

Part of the outgoing first batch

The whole catch-up QSL process will take quite a few months as I work off the backlog.

73

Steve
K9ZW

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More New K9ZW QSL Cards

More new K9ZW QSL Cards (upper right is a guest card) – Fronts

My remaining three designs arrived from printing, along with a variation made up as a “Guest Operator’s QSL Card” for people operating from my Washington Island neighbor & friend George W9EVT’s station.

These are updates to designs Jeff K1NSS did for me back in the 2014-2015 timeframe, that I never had printed as physical QSL cards. A series of distractions, an anticipated QTH move that would have required rework before printing that didn’t happen in the end, and our actual home QTH move kept putting the project on the back burner.

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New K9ZW “Circle-n-Select” QSO Cards

‌The first two designs of my new QSL cards arrived and I took a moment to fill out an imaginary QSO with myself to see how they would work.

K9ZW Circle-n-Select QSL Card in B&W

K9ZW Circle-n-Select QSL Card in Color version

Jeff K1NSS worked with a concept I suggested to make a quick to fill out card covering the the complexity of having combinations of various working positions, station/antenna locations, available radios and antennas.

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