Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Curses!! Foiled Again!

So I made another trip down to K-4183, the Atterbury Fish and Wildlife Area, and got all set up at a new much shadier site called Beaver Bottom. 

Beaver Bottom is a nice place next to a 5 or 6 acre lake.  I need to come back and fish here because I looked in the state fish stocking database and this lake has been stocked with 8 inch channel cats to the tune of about 500 per year since 2017, plus bluegill and a few others.  

First I set up the Eagle One vertical on the back of my SUV, set up my table, got the radio all connected and very carefully laid out the coax.  I was having some trouble getting it to tune so I inspected the connectors on both ends of the coax, and they seemed to be in good shape.  Yay.
Then I hit the tune button again and got a green light on my old LDG Z11 autotuner. to spot myself on the POTA spotting page, and I was in luck, as I had three bars of cell service.  I got spotted and starting calling CQ.  Nothing.  I was on 7061, my usual spot, and I was not hearing anything anywhere on the entire band.  I moved to 20m and tried calling, nothing. 

So I started thinking about what could be wrong and I got up and started checking my coax feedline foot by foot.  I bought this feedline maybe 15 years ago, and I have used it and rolled it up and unrolled it and rolled it up again about 100 or so times that I could almost remember.  Sure enough, somewhere along the way the braid or the center conductor got damaged, by kinking, or too much rolling up, or something.  I found three suspicious "lumps" in the feedline. Curse you Red Baron!!  I know knew how Snoopy felt. 

Of course I did not bring a spare feedline for the vertical.  I was dejected but it was still a good outing, I was outside, it was flat gorgeous, and I saw a couple heron's, some squirrels, a few rabbits, and a gigantic Red Tailed Hawk. So I stayed and just soaked it in for a bit before tearing down and heading back to the ranch, a mere 25 miles away.  This site even had a Rumpke Office.

The day wasn't a total loss, no logs to submit, since I worked no one.  I have ordered a new feedline and will maybe try my Alex Loop the next time.  I forgot I even had it in the truck with me.  It normally does fine on 12m-40m 

Until the next adventure!  

OH!!  Congratulations to Joe Taylor K1JT  and Peter Parker VK3YE on being selected for induction to the QRP-ARCI QRP Hall of Fame!  Their contributions to the art and science of QRP radio have been felt worldwide. 

73 de KB9BVN

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