“Storm Watch”

Newsletter of NZ1U – The Barnstormers Contest Group


             “The BarnStormers News”                                                                                                                                                       Volume 10 No.3, July 30, 2005

When Bad Turns to Good


After much thought I have decided to rededicate “The K1GX Award” from this day forward to represent good rather than bad. For many contests we have been lighting the lamp as a shrine to inspire us to do better so the dual meaning just doesn’t fit anymore. Furthermore I couldn’t decide who to give the award to last year so another reason to change. (I can’t give to myself which I probably should have done last year!)


So, The Great Shining Light you see on the Webcam during the darkness hours now will have a new meaning for us.




Thank you NX1Q for the esteemed representation of the award!


I may still present the award at the annual Christmas Party but from now on it is for good reasons, not screw-ups


Progress with N1MM


Well, we have gone through at least two contests with using N1MM. The last contest was IARU where Frank operated as SOAB CW Only. After a brief problem in the beginning the rest of the contest went well with no problems. We all have to get practice with this program before October. I will try to keep everyone updated on contests that we should try to play in before October and get time with this program.  Even if you can come over for only a few hours it would be useful. There is still computer work to be done and I will be snapping the whip on N1GKI very soon. LOOK OUT Jay!



I said the last was the last!  I lied!


I teased you all last week with a note that I had a few big things to announce. Well here is the biggest. Kim located another 30 feet of Rohn 45 and we now have enough to put up 130 feet. So, here we go again. The plan is to put up 130 feet with the 6M yagi on top and then the 40M antenna below it. It could be “The Dallas” but at this time I am not sure for a number of reasons. Can the tower take the load? Can I turn the antenna with a rotor that will fit into Rohn 45?  A number of “ifs” to overcome. We have the anchors and next will be a purchase of some phillystrand.  We probably will use some of the funds we raised last spring. We don’t have enough for 3 monitors so what is left after purchasing 2 monitors is available.


Monitor Purchased


I have purchased a 15” Flat Screen for Station #2. Actually I had to buy a computer for Alain and stole his 15” Flat Screen when I upgraded him to a 17”. I will take $150 from the fund and put it towards the purchase of the 17”. We still need two more and ultimately maybe a third for the Webcam computer. We can take our time and hold out for the right price.



Upcoming 2005-2006 Contest Season


With the new contest season approaching soon we need to think about which class we want to compete. I am still thinking that M/M in CQWW is better but without a doubt we are short operators. In ARRL I like the M/2 class. What is everyone’s opinion on this? Please give me some feedback. We have not had much luck adding operators and still would like to find a few new people for our group. Anyone you have in mind?



YCCC Picnic – July 23rd


Kim and I went to the YCCC picnic at the home of W1SRG. It’s a great location and the W1SRG gang did the usual bang-up job of BBQing the grub. Lots of great conversations. Paul, K1ZM, is still crying about operating SSB here and getting that fact posted to 3830 with the score. He really enjoyed helping Max that afternoon.  A great chat with George, W1ZT as well. He was here for a visit many years ago and I invited him to stop by and see what we have done over the years. He operates at K1RX during the contests so not much chance of adding him to our crew.





KB1DFB, NB1U, and KB1H were the part-time crew for the CQWW VHF contest a few weeks ago. Six meters was open allot during the contest but in spurts of 10 minutes. It seemed as though no matter when I went up in the barn I could work a new group of grid squares as the band changed. Too bad we only operated about 5 hours. We could have done much better if we had sat in the chairs. Isn’t that the story all the time?


Speaking of VHF…


Just as we do not sit still in the HF side of the operation here, Kim is busy making changes in the VHF side. A new series of transverters are coming to replace the Elekrafts.  Though the Elekrafts are OK they don’t like the “Tower of Power” and also are a little weak in the heat dissipation department. Too much CQing overheats the units and causes them to shutdown. Kim has ordered his first of maybe three Downeast Microwave tranverters. These seem to have a more robust design.  Remember, the September VHF contest will be here soon and we want a good effort. I will send out the dates and hopefully you can help operate.




I know this was a short “Storm Watch” but I really needed to get one out there to let you know I am still kicking and thinking. 



73”, Dick