W7ZOI Technical Notes

Here’s a link to one of the technical wizards of our hobby. He has links to some nice material on his site. one of the first articles I noticed on his site was the one about breadboarding techniques from 2007, ugly construction and manhattan construction all mixed together.

73, Al

Teens in Ham Radio — great!

I was just reading an entry oin the QRP-L list and a new teen amateur radio web site teenradiojourney.com was mentioned. Here’s a link to the new site. Another new one is also mentioned on the teenradiojouney.com blog.

As a hobby, it is great to see it being promoted in the teen ranks, they are the future of this hobby.

73, Al

7-Band Semi-Vertical Trap Antenna

Scanning one of the local radio club’s web site, I spied an article about this antenna and liked what I saw. I have the aluminum pipe and will be building it over the next few months. A link to the article called the 7-Band Semi-Vertical Trap Antenna by Bob Rice VE3HKY gives the detiails on the antenna.

73, Al

What’s Your Grid Square?

In VHF/UHF, one of the main pieces of information usually exchanged is the grid square location. It consists of 2 letters, 2 numbers and then 2 letters and is derived from the latitude and longitude of a location. For example, the grid square location for a location in the middle of the river just above the Falls at Niagara Falls is FN03LC. Here’s a link to a web page which will tell you your grid square location, based on GoogleMaps. Just zoom in on the location you want the grid square location for and click on that location. The latitude and longitude of the location will be displayed, along with the grid square location.


A fellow ham out in the wild west state of Colorado has drafted 2 goats to use as his travelling companions and as pack animals for his adventures in the mountains of Colorado. Often times, Steve will go out on an adventure, video his adventure and then post the video of it on his blog site. If you want to see some spectacular mountain scenery and cheer on the 3 old goats as they show us the adventures they are up to, check out the link at The Adventures Rooster and Peanut with Steve/WG0AT. I have also added a link on the right sidebar to this site.

73, Al

Radio St Helena Day 2010

RSH << RSD 2010 Cancelled >> 10 September 2010

Radio St. Helena sincerely regrets to have to inform radio listeners everywhere that

>> Radio St. Helena Day 2010 has been cancelled << . This very difficult decision was necessary, due to severe technical problems with the shortwave antenna tower. RSH is quite confident that RSD will be able to continue in 2011. 73, Al Radio St Helena is a shortwave station that brodcasts only one day a year from the remote island of St Helena in the south Atlantic Ocean. Here’s your chance to hear this station again in 2010 and get one of their QSLs. This is a notice just posted on the ODXA (Ontario DX Association) list:

The following just came in from the Ardic DX Club. Saturday October 9th is Canadian Thanksgiving and American Columbus Day long weekends.

Radio St. Helena Day 2010 : Date, Times, and Targets

RSD 2010 will be on Saturday, 09. October 2010

Target Region       Times  (UTC )              Beam Heading
=============       ================           ============
EUROPE              1900 - 2030 UTC            10 degrees

INDIA               2030 - 2130 UTC            70 degrees

JAPAN               2130 - 2300 UTC            50 degrees

North America       2300 - 0030 UTC            310 degrees

Transmission frequency 11092.5 khz USB

Gary Walters, Station Manager of Radio St. Helena, has just confirmed the above information, and, as usual, Derek Richards will operate the RSD shortwave transmitting facility.

There will be a special email-address exclusively for the evening of RSD 2010. As soon as Gary sets up this special email account, we will publish the account name.

The RSD 2010 QSL cards are being sponsored by the Danish ShortWave Club International. Reception reports for RSD 2010 should be sent with sufficient return postage to RSH using the special Airmail address via Ascension and the United Kingdom — exactly the same procedure as for the RSD 2009 reception reports. ALL mail to RSH should use this procedure.

ALL 266 QSLs for RSD 2009 have been mailed and should now be arriving around the world.

The sunspot minimum between sunspot cycles 23 and 24 is the longest in history — much to the dismay of shortwave listeners everywhere. This minimum has lasted since 2007 and is still ongoing. There are not very many sunspots to “help” propagation, and there is no real sign of significant change. The UTC-times for broadcasting to the various target area have been very carefully selected to have the very best chance of good reception in each area. Also, we need to have the RSD broadcasts one after the other. After RSD 2009, it was decided to change the times somewhat and to move RSD from November to October (as was the case back in the late 1990’s — Thanks, John). RSH hopes that everyone around the world has excellent reception conditions during RSD 2010 and is looking forward to your emails and also, if possible, to your telephone calls.

Gary Walters , Station Manager of Radio St. Helena via Robert Kipp (Jaisakthivel, Ardic DX Club, India)

Mark Coady
Editor Shortwave Loggings
Shadow Lake Camp Convenor
Ontario DX Association

Friday the 13th

Today is Friday the 13th. I have never been there on the 13th but there is always a big event at Port Dover, Ontario on any Friday the 13th. Always a big crowd I hear. If you are interested, check out their website.

Stealth Antennas

As a han radio operator, you only dream about the perfect location to operate from and where you can have the best antennas in the world, but most of us live in the real world with all of its restrictions. Here are articles about a couple of what I call stealth antennas, antennas disguised so that you would not think of them as an “ugly” ham anteena. Of course, to a ham, no antenna is ugly!

flowerpot antennaflagpole antennaHere is a link to an antenna system that you can hide in your front flower garden. Built using a flower pot, this antenna system can be deployed almost anywhere in the garden allowing you to operate some of your favourite bands.

Another stealth system used is to hide your antenna inside what looks like a flagpole. You can be patriotic at the same time as you will be able to work the ham radio bands that this antenna covers. The neighbours will be none the wiser!

Ohm’s Law

One of the first things you are taught in learning to become an amateur radio operator is Ohm’s Law. Here is Make magazine’s version of Ohm’s Law.

A fun way to learn about the fundamental equation in electronics.