Archive for the ‘Fun stuff’ Category

QSO with Ted Randall

August 23, 2010

I got an email over the weekend from Ted Randall, WB8PUM, who creates the QSO Podcast (available on ITunes). If you’re looking for a ham radio podcast then you’ll love Ted’s podcast which he records from various ham fests around the US. The current podcast has Ted interview a couple of guys about QRP and MFJ products while at the Huntsville Alabama Ham Fest.

BTW Ted’s audio is pretty good. Bet he’s running Heil commercial microphones. Just a guess. Heil mics are hugely popular in the amateur radio community (especially contesters who use his headphone/mic sets) but lots of musicians swear by Heil’s top end commercial mics.


Radioworld Gets Louder – A Lot Louder

August 20, 2010

I hesitate in blowing any commercial interest’s horn but when I read an email from Jack Summers of Radioworld about a new deal with RF Concepts to handle Alpha Amplifiers and other products as an avid contester I just had to give them a shoutout.

I don’t think there’s much debate in the Amateur Radio world that Alpha amps are the big dogs when it comes to power. These guys are built like battleships. They are expensive – I mean seriously expensive but when you’re going to buy one amp to last the rest of your life and the life of the guy who buys it from your estate sale (that’s pretty grim isn’t it?) then it’s an Alpha you want to have sitting on your desktop. All 76 pounds of it.

Go search on the Internet for the guys running the Alphas and they are always listed at the top of the contest results.

Here’s a link to the Alpha amps on Notice the average rating is 4.9 out of 5.

I got start saving my pennies.  Woo Hoo

Stranger than Fiction

August 20, 2010

Sometimes when I’m reading an article in one of the ham radio magazines it’s so weird that I have to check I’m not reading the April issue and the article is an April Fool’s joke.

I was getting caught up on my reading when I sat that the June 2010 issue of QST had a brief article by editor Steve Ford, WB8IMY on page 98 called Quantum Transistors?

In the article Steve reports on news that for the first time, “physicists have demonstrated that physically separated particles in solid-state devices can be quantum-mechanically entangled.” Okay so what the heck does that mean? Entangled photons split apart continue to act as one. What happens to one happens to the other regardless of distance and when we say distance we don’t mean just across a circuit board but distance measured in lightyears! The report on this phenomena was reported in Physical Review Letters.

So what? Well this could mean we could have transistors that have unlimited on/off switching speeds and a change to one electron could happen in another electron somewhere else. Talk about zero delay in using your remote station transmitter.

Canadians in 15th World ARDF Championship

August 19, 2010

A five-man representing Canada, four from B.C. and one from Quebec are travelling to Croatia to compete in the Amateur Radio Direction Finding World Championships taking place from Sept. 13 to 18 in Opatia, near Rijeka.

Here’s the team:

G. D. (Joe) Young – VE7BFK – Member of  Friendship Amateur Radio Society Canada

Joe’s been ARDF coordinator for Radio Amateurs of Canada since 2002. He’s been a driving and supporting force in radio sport – ARDF development in Canada and BC. He’s been regarded as an important and valuable member of Radio Amateurs of Canada ARDF. He has also been active in the Friendship Amateur Radio Society Canada and Worldwide.

Les Tocko – VA7OM – Member of Maple Ridge Radio Amateur Club and BCRadioSport

Les was a Czechoslovakian and European champion in multiple categories, as an individual and in team competitions. For more details see Appendix A. He is also an active promoter and teacher of Radio Direction Finding skills in Maple Ridge BC area. His excellent technical building skills have produced high quality equipment for radio direction finding.

Amel Krdzalic – VA7KBA – Member of Burnaby Amateur Radio Club and BCRadioSport

Amel was a national champion of  ex.Yugoslavia and Bosnia in multiple categories, as an individual and in team competitions. He is also a reigning champion from the last International Friendship Amateur Radio Games 2008 in ARDF, in category “men below 45years” (for more details see Appendix A). He is also an active promoter and teacher of Radio Direction Finding skills in Vancouver BC area. He’s been recognized by many radio amateur clubs for development of Radio Direction Finding movement (BCRadioSport) in Vancouver BC region.

John MacConnachie – VE7GED – Member of  Friendship Amateur Radio Society Canada

John is a member of the Friendship Amateur Radio Society Canada and has participated in ARDF competitions hosted by that organization since 1993. He has also been involved in hosting regular practice/demo ARDF sessions in Victoria since that time to the present. Valeri Geuorguiev Valeri has been active in the Montreal Amateur Radio club. He has increased their ARDF activities recently by contributing a design for a 2m ARDF receiver that was then constructed as a club project so that there are now a couple dozen equipped to participate in ARDF. He competed on the European and Region II ARDF levels and had great results.

For more information here’s a link to the BCRadioSport – ARDF Canada blog.

Web sites for further information on Amateur Radio Direction Finding:

Event official web site

Region II ARDF web site

Radio Amateurs of Canada ARDF web site

BC area ARDF announcements

Joe Moell’s (U. S. ARDF Coordinator) web site