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Author Topic: QRP Record?  (Read 1346 times)
N8FVJ
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Posts: 692




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« on: September 24, 2002, 10:15:34 PM »

About 11 years ago I was testing a Heathkit SB-104 on the 1 watt (driver) selection into a dummy load in my basement. I am located in Michigan. Testing the SSB modulation on the 10 meter band, a station contacted me from Phoenix, AZ. He stated what is your call as I was saying test, hello test, test, test! I was floored. The other station was using 1500 watts into a large beam antenna.
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WB6BYU
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Posts: 13331




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« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2002, 04:30:04 PM »

I made some contacts with the antenna connected to the
receiver input connection on my HW-12 many years ago.
(This was by mistake, of course...)  Looking at the
circuit, the receive antenna connects to a link on the
driver coil, so I was probably running similar power.

But I'd guess you are a long way from a record.  I've
worked a lot of DX over the years on my Ten-Tec
Argonaut at 2 watts output, including many contacts
between the West coast and Japan (even on 80m!),as
well as long path from Australia to Florida on 20m.
Sure, it helps to be active at the peak of the sunspot
cycle, but you will find folks regularly working DX
at QRP power levels (and some hardy souls working down
in the milliwatt range, trying to work all states with
a TOTAL power - sum of the power level for all 50
contacts - under 5 watts.

A lot of people don't realize how little power it can
take to make a contact when conditions are good!

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N8FVJ
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Posts: 692




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« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2002, 07:29:20 PM »

Yes low power, but I was not connected to an antenna, it was a dummy load.
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20611




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« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2002, 12:40:53 PM »

That might beat my "dummy load DX" record, I'm not sure.  I worked from my parents' basement (7' below ground) in New Jersey to a station in Ohio (about 500 miles by air) on 40m running about a Watt to a light bulb for a dummy load on the bench.

I've worked from my current QTH (Los Angeles) into Pennsylvania on 17m using a light bulb for a dummy load (GE "soft white," 60W, screwed into a porcelain socket connected to the rig with RG58/U), but I don't recall the power I was running -- might have been the whole 60W or so.

Tom Schiller N6BT of Force-12 Antennas wrote an article "Everything Works" in QST a couple of years ago, which was a bit tongue-in-cheek but revealed the details of his using not only one, but in some cases "stacked" incandescent light bulbs as an antenna system, and how much he worked with that.  Since that article included photographs of the setup, it was much better than just text.

With double-shielded coax connected to a well-shielded dummy load like a Bird Termaline, I haven't worked anybody yet, but I'm still trying.

WB2WIK/6
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N8FVJ
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Posts: 692




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« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2002, 07:36:20 PM »

Nice contact from a light bulb. My dummy load was the Heathkit Cantenna that is completely shielded. In my basement, the house is aluminum sided for some shielding as well.
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DJ1YFK
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Posts: 191


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« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2002, 07:19:15 AM »

Was your dummy load directly connected to the Transmitter or was there an antenna switch between it?
If I switch my Antenna-Switch to the dummy load and have the main antenna still connected, there is enough leaking HF to make QSO's.. When I disconnect my antenna only the very strong signals are just audible...

However, congrats for your QRP efforts, I think will try the light-bulb-antenna too Wink
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20611




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« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2002, 05:20:14 PM »

DJ1YFK, in my case, it was the transmitter connected directly to the dummy load, no switch.  However, as stated, in my case, the load was a light bulb, and it turns out they radiate pretty well!  Seems to break down to about 50% light, 49% heat, and 1% RF.  Good enough to make transcontinental contacts...

WB2WIK/6

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N8FVJ
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Posts: 692




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« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2002, 09:52:33 AM »

My radio was only connected to the dummy load at a test bench in basement. I have not any antenna leads into the basement as my radio shack is on the main floor.
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KT8K
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Posts: 1490




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« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2002, 02:16:10 PM »

Around 1980, I heard that some old timer here in Ann Arbor MI had worked Japan with 35mw.  I have no details, but I'm sure the Million-Miles-Per-Watt Award has applicants that beat that all hollow.

My only claim to fame was a cantenna contact using 5w on 40 with a low power station in Southern Indiana or Illinois (no antenna switch there either).  I was amazed when he called me.  QRP is a Real Hoot.

73 de kt8k - Tim
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KK9H
Member

Posts: 18




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« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2003, 03:17:50 PM »

This isn't a record breaker, but it was both fun and humorous. Last winter I had just finished building an Elecraft K1 and was listening around 7040 KHz to see if there were any other QRP stations around. I heard an extremely faint CQ, and not being afraid of a challenge, I decided to give him a call. I live in the Chicago area and the other station was in Columbus, Ohio. As we proceeded with the QSO, he was always just barely above the noise floor or right on it. I learned that he was using a little RockMite rig which runs about a half watt out and a dipole antenna. My K1 was also connected to a dipole. When I gave him his signal report and told him how rough the copy was so he happened to look out his window and noticed that his antenna had completely fallen down and was lying on the ground in his yard. We exchanged QSL cards and commented how funny it was that we were actually able to conduct a QSO with his antenna that way.  
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