“Storm Watch”

Newsletter of NZ1U – The Barnstormers Contest Group

    "The Barnstormers News"                                                                         Volume 6 No.8, November 7, 2001


Post CQWW SSB Report


Well, CQWW SSB 2001 is history and as usual not uneventful. First the important numbers:


            Band               QSOs              Zones              Countries


            160                      12                   4                         6

             80                     154                20                        76

             40                     237                24                        98

             20                     993                38                       148

             15                   1281                38                       152

             10                   1221                39                       157


                                    3898                163                      637 č 8,746,400


Though we didn’t make the goals I had set, we did improve from last year and that is good. Sunday conditions were pretty bad due to the magnetic storm that hit but 10 meters was still almost a bottomless pit for QSOs.


The network worked flawlessly. What a treat that was. Most equipment hung in there. We did have a few equipment failures but all in all a good weekend. A definite lack of operators hurt us Saturday with most of the day seeing only two seats occupied.


Seeing the early scores, the next level we need to break is the 10M point mark. We have dropped down below the “Top Ten” but no surprise. All in all I think a good effort. Thanks to all that helped both during the operation and before.



New Operators…


After this last contest I saw the need to add an operator or two to the crew. The ideal situation would be someone who can run on both modes.


 I see that in a SSB contest we need a runner for the dayshift. The overnight work has been covered nicely by Kim and Frank. Dave gives good breaks to both the dayshift and nightshift operators.


In a CW contest, we need overnight help. This could be a good opportunity for someone to work on their CW contesting skills at not a too hectic pace.


In ARRL, the need is slightly less because we run a Multi/2 operation rather than 3 stations.


Of course a climber would be nice. It is getting tougher to climb these towers and I have to agree with Dave, the towers seem to be getting higher!


Let me know if you have someone in mind. I will start to recruit someone if noone has any suggestions.



Things to do and repair before CQWW CW – November 24-25


Repairs to be made:


The sidearm rotor failed after only a few hours. It appears as though the idea of having presets on the sidearm is not too good. The potentiometer that is use to set the degree you want to turn to is too coarse. If the sidearm does not reach the setting because of hitting the tower leg, the rotor sits there and cooks the motor. We have disassembled the rotor. Found the brushes crumbling apart. A new motor is on order ($90). We must rebuild the rotor and reinstall.


We lost an Astron Power Supply. We have extras.


The TL-922 is still on the fritz. With Bob’s Titan and L4B we have a back-up amplifier though.


Things to do:


The L4B and Titan need to be swapped out.  We are also thinking about putting Bob’s FT-1000D inline and having the TS-850 for a backup rig.


            The Drake tuners on Station #1 and Station #2 need to be swapped.


Tripod and tri-bander? This is my latest pet project. I do not want to have the tribander on the ground for another winter.


The directivity of the two wire beverage system needs to be checked. Frank believes it might be favoring the SW and not the NE.


There are at least two more poles to put in to hold up the beverage. By the way, this new beverage works great!


I think I found our long running problems with the StackBox on Station #1. Bad wire at the patch panel in the shack. After problems with the #2 antenna on the 40 meter, 20 meter, 15 meter, and 10 meter stacks I kinda figured there had to be a common cause.


I will be away November 10-15 so this coming weekend is a lost weekend. The rotor parts should be in so Kim can repair the rotor and prepare to reinstall.


I will send out a “Storm Watch” before CQWW CW with our goals and hopes.


73 – Dick