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Author Topic: 1000+ Miles on 1 Watt  (Read 24506 times)
KE3W
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Posts: 29


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« Reply #30 on: January 06, 2011, 10:22:33 PM »

 Grin Bring it on! Grin

Wait til the solar cycle opens up... you'll be able to work the world with 5 watts into a wet string.  Wink


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KA4DQJ
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Posts: 44




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« Reply #31 on: January 11, 2011, 05:52:05 PM »

Fun huh!?! Reminds me of my first QRP experience! 

23-years ago, 73 Magazine published a two-part article on how to build a "Pee Wee Thirty", a high performance one-watt 30-meter CW superhet transceiver.  No kit... the thing was built from scratch and involved drawing, etching and drilling the PC board, cutting up BIC pencils for use as coil forms, and re-winding mini-transformer cans to resonate at 10mhz. As a plus, the little rig even had an AM mode and tuned the entire 30-meter broadcast band.  The audio stage would even drive a speaker in addition to the headphone jack.  The entire rig was built in a Radio Shack project box.

I don't know how many hams built the Pee Wee Thirty, but I did.  The novelty of the rig too is that it worked on one of the new WARC bands... most hams were still using 5-band only HF rigs and only the newest and most expensive hardware had the new 30, 17 and 12-meter bands.  I know that the QRP rig I was building was the only WARC radio I owned!

It took over a year for me to build the radio.  It was after midnight on March 27, 1989 when I used it for the first time.  Running my puny 1-watt into a balun-less dipole at 40-feet, I called a short CQ on 10.105 with a straight key with no real expecation of a reply.  Surprise!   CT3FT, Cedric on Madeira Island replied and gave me a 569 signal into Tennessee. 

I have Cedric's QSL card on my wall.  Along with my very first QSO card, it's the most valuable one I have.

Sorry for getting long winded.  Smiley
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KE3W
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« Reply #32 on: January 11, 2011, 08:01:53 PM »

Great memories KA4DQJ - thanks for sharing them with us.
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NU4B
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Posts: 2154




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« Reply #33 on: January 12, 2011, 05:25:05 AM »

Fun huh!?! Reminds me of my first QRP experience! 

23-years ago, 73 Magazine published a two-part article on how to build a "Pee Wee Thirty", a high performance one-watt 30-meter CW superhet transceiver.  No kit... the thing was built from scratch and involved drawing, etching and drilling the PC board, cutting up BIC pencils for use as coil forms, and re-winding mini-transformer cans to resonate at 10mhz. As a plus, the little rig even had an AM mode and tuned the entire 30-meter broadcast band.  The audio stage would even drive a speaker in addition to the headphone jack.  The entire rig was built in a Radio Shack project box.

I don't know how many hams built the Pee Wee Thirty, but I did.  The novelty of the rig too is that it worked on one of the new WARC bands... most hams were still using 5-band only HF rigs and only the newest and most expensive hardware had the new 30, 17 and 12-meter bands.  I know that the QRP rig I was building was the only WARC radio I owned!

It took over a year for me to build the radio.  It was after midnight on March 27, 1989 when I used it for the first time.  Running my puny 1-watt into a balun-less dipole at 40-feet, I called a short CQ on 10.105 with a straight key with no real expecation of a reply.  Surprise!   CT3FT, Cedric on Madeira Island replied and gave me a 569 signal into Tennessee. 

I have Cedric's QSL card on my wall.  Along with my very first QSO card, it's the most valuable one I have.

Sorry for getting long winded.  Smiley

Great story - thanks!
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KA4DQJ
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Posts: 44




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« Reply #34 on: January 12, 2011, 11:51:08 AM »

Thank you, guys.  The original paperwork for the Pee Wee Thirty has turned yellow and fell apart.  The ham who submitted the two-part article was AC9E, Dan Eggert.  I even sent Dan photos of my finished rig and communicated with him via snail mail for sometime (there was no email in those days).  

73 Magazine reproduced the PCB backwards, published a retraction, but never would print the correct image.  Anyone building the rig had to etch, drill and mount componets from a reversed diagram!  Also, the two-part article was published in September and October of 1988.  I remembered the first of 1988... funny what the mind will remember that isn't so.  So it took me 7 months instead of a year to complete the project.

I usd the rig for 5 years until I dropped it, making hundreds of contacts. I'd love to build another one if I could find a those old 73 magazines which haven't decayed from the acid-based paper they were printed on.  The little rig was a superhet instead of the direct conversion receivers we are more likely to build for for QRP work.  When it came to weak signal sensitivity, the Pee Wee was right up there with my Yaesu FT-401B and TS-520 which had not yet become anchors.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2011, 12:15:22 PM by KA4DQJ » Logged
KC9TNH
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Posts: 304




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« Reply #35 on: January 14, 2011, 06:29:49 AM »

Thanks for that great story! Too great not to go lookin'....

September '88, issue 336.  Now to actually find one, sounds like the 1st crystal radio I built in Jr High elec shop when I was 12, but on steroids in terms of functionality.

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73
Wes -KC9TNH
"Don't get treed by a chihuahua." - Pete
M3FLP
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Posts: 1




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« Reply #36 on: January 17, 2011, 03:54:07 PM »

I managed 1380 miles, 5W SSB, 20M into a Hamstick on a magmount with my 817 and I thought that was good lol?
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N5XTR
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Posts: 108




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« Reply #37 on: January 18, 2011, 11:36:26 AM »

My best qso was to West Virginia on .5w on CW.  I was camping and had ft817 in the tent with a hustler mobile antenna on 40m ground mounted with four speaker wire radials.  The best part is that KS8T was running a Heathkit HW8 at 2 watts.  We had a 45 minute chat til the band dropped.

That is excellent watts per mile for either station. 
1100 miles!
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K7GLM
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Posts: 51




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« Reply #38 on: January 20, 2011, 11:54:29 AM »

During the NAQP/Phone segment, I worked Hawaii on 200 mW on SSB. That's about 13,000 miles per watt from my QTH. Had a nice chat too, so it wasn't just a fabricated contest I-almost-heard-something qso. The radio power meter is calibrated with my HP432A, so I'm pretty confident about the low power level.

Having a well-wired tower & beam shooting over the ocean for most of the trip sure helps, along with a beach-mounted vertical at the other end. Hawaii, Alaska and Japan are all like local calls from here.

It may be a new personal best - need to check the old logs.   Smiley
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KA4DQJ
Member

Posts: 44




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« Reply #39 on: January 28, 2011, 12:22:03 PM »

I also bought an MFJ CW 30m "peanut whistle" transceiver many years ago.  The thing had a problem in that the frequency drifted worse than a politician's views.  I sent it back to MFJ 3-4 times but they never fixed it.  On the last shipout I got the rig back with a letter saying they had sent me a new rig as a replacement.  Well, that was nice of 'em!  Uh oh!... how come the "new" rig still has the same scratches on the underside of the case as my old one?  Well... maybe MFJ replaced the board.  Yeah, that would qualify as a new rig.  Sure.  I put the thing back on the air and the "new" rig drifted just like the old one.  I didn't sent it back after that; it reckon it's laying around in the junk barn somewhere, I probably haven't seen it in 15-years.
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KA4DQJ
Member

Posts: 44




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« Reply #40 on: January 28, 2011, 12:25:26 PM »

My best qso was to West Virginia on .5w on CW.  I was camping and had ft817 in the tent with a hustler mobile antenna on 40m ground mounted with four speaker wire radials.  The best part is that KS8T was running a Heathkit HW8 at 2 watts.  We had a 45 minute chat til the band dropped.

That is excellent watts per mile for either station. 
1100 miles!
 

I built an HW-8 over the summer of 1978.  It was a great little radio, and a whopping improvement over the HW-7 which had terrible microphonics.  If you rapped the case with the headphones one the thing would ring like the Liberty Bell.
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KA4DQJ
Member

Posts: 44




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« Reply #41 on: January 28, 2011, 12:30:21 PM »

Thanks for that great story! Too great not to go lookin'....

September '88, issue 336.  Now to actually find one, sounds like the 1st crystal radio I built in Jr High elec shop when I was 12, but on steroids in terms of functionality.



If you decide to build it remember that 73 Magazine published the PC board backwards. They acknowleged their error in a later magazine, but never reprinted the correct image even after I begged them to.  I was lucky in that Dan the author sent me a page with the correct orientation.  He said he never did get his original artwork returned so I received a copy of a copy.  I don't know if you could build the thing using the backwards PCB diagram as a guide.
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KJ4EZX
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Posts: 1




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« Reply #42 on: January 29, 2013, 08:17:29 AM »

YES! one watt 1,042 miles phone  kj4ezx to ne5v  during the fireside 2013 contest ... as I  am new to qrp and  I was very excited to do this .
hope to do much more next using cw ....I am still working on my cw
Terry kj4ezx
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W4OP
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Posts: 392


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« Reply #43 on: January 29, 2013, 11:14:51 AM »

Before I upgraded my 23cM EME station I worked  a lot of guys around the world with 100W at the dish- that works out to over 5000 miles/watt via the moon.

Dale W4OP
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KU4UV
Member

Posts: 375




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« Reply #44 on: February 05, 2013, 09:22:37 AM »

I consistently made contacts to the west coast during Field Day last year running about 4 Watts output from a Youkits 4-band transceiver into an inverted L about 50 feet up in the trees.  The whole setup I used, including the fan, was battery-powered.  This was west coast from southern Kentucky.  I even had a nice QSO on 30 meters on the Saturday evening of Field Day with a guy in Oregon.  I had a lot of fun running QRP CW during Field Day last year, now I am hooked!

73,
Mike KU4UV
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