Friday, 08 November 2013

Tower Talk

OK then....

At the beginning of the year I purchased a second hand tower.
It's a 40 ft / 12m tower, with an 18" / 45cm face width. This is a nice, heavy duty tower, and included the hinged base in the deal.

This morning my new, secondhand Hy-Gain Hy-Quad 244 was delivered to the house.

After our recent radio trip ( ) to Mozambique, I got some input from Tad, WF4W, and Kevin, K6TD, on where and how to put the tower up at home.

I have now about 90% of the information needed, and will hopefully have the tower and antenna up in the not too distant future.

One of the tasks ahead is canvassing the direct neighbours, to hear if they will have any objections. I hope not!

On the want / to do list still for the tower project:

  • Obtain OK from neighbours
  • Source a rotator somewhere that won't break the bank
  • Source a mast to mount the antenna on, to be turned by the rotator.
  • Dig a hole and plant the tower! 
Here's to hoping it all goes smoothly.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Boring Sunday in the mountains

Today is a cold (-5C), boring Sunday in the Lesotho highlands. The snow from yesterday's blizzard is still nearly a meter thick in some places.
I've spoken to my husband at home (missing him and the animal "kids" like crazy this morning), and Mozart's C-minor mass is playing to keep me company.

After months (maybe years) I've eventually updated the firmware on my Yaesu FT-950. It was kind of a non-event. I really expected that it would involve a few attempts, and possible failure. I guess you mustn't allow other people's experiences to determine your mindset. I've read so many accounts of radios being "bricked" by failed software attempts, that I was really apprehensive, but decided I must stop letting other people's failures hold ME back. I suppose this can be applied in all aspects of life.  Well, the radio is working fine, so it's up to date and ready to work more DX.

I'm here in the mountains till 6 May, when I head home again.

I'll try and post some pictures of the snow in a while.

Have a great Sunday.

Monday, 17 December 2012

On site with equipment

I arrived back on site today with my equipment, a 12m Spiderbeam Telescopic Mast, and a 3 el 6m yagi.
I am now dependant on the weather to get the antennas in the air. For HF I'll be using an Off Centre Fed Dipole, strung from the same mast.

I've have many emails asking about 160m operations. I don't have an answer yet. I've had two offers to use some good low band antennas, and an offer for an amp, so we'll see how that goes.

My current location is 10 500ft above sea level, so I'm hoping it'll work well for radio.

I'll be QRV as soon as I can.


(Now 7P8RI)

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

New callsign!

I have received my license here in Lesotho, and will be on the air from about 17 December as 7P8RI.

I got permission from the management here, so can now put up antennas to play radio again.

Monday, 02 April 2012

Back at work

Hi everyone,

I'm back in Zambia after a nice break at home.

Antenna plans here have changed again. I won't be able to erect the Spiderbeam, as the area required (minimum 10m x 10m) is too big, and I won't be able to get it up through the trees.

I might look at a Hexbeam, if finances allow later.

For now, the Off Centre Fed Dipoles are working fine.

Happy DX'ing!


Monday, 27 February 2012

Home for a while

Tomorrow morning I start my trip home for my three week break.

This has been a productive 6 weeks on the radio, and the new headet has certainly helped.

Have a good time, and I'll be back!

Thursday, 16 February 2012


Yesterday as I wrote the update I was really looking forward to the coming weekend's contest.
But last night I realised that I was off duty last weekend, which means that I'm working this one! DAMN!
So contesting will be limited to maybe an hour during my lunch break, and then after 15:00UTC. Both Saturday AND Sunday.

Oh well, here's hoping that I'll still work the three states I need to confirm.

Have a good day.