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Author Topic: QRP Field day  (Read 6333 times)

Posts: 28

« on: June 27, 2011, 06:39:12 PM »

I ran my Elecraft K1 for the first time from the backyard under an awning for FD.
I set up a temporary coax fed dipole in the back yard and used a 2.3 ah gel battery charged by a small solar panel.
I was amazed how 5 watts on 40m did, every station I called back got my exchange with no repeats.
The K1 is a great radio and I used the xtal filter #3 set to 200 Hz quite a bit. My whole station fits into a backpack and took a short time to set up. Anyone else try portable FD?  



Posts: 3018

« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2011, 07:10:46 PM »

Same experience here. I used my new Oak Hills100A transceiver and had surprisingly little trouble making contacts from home with 5 watts on 40 CW. Worked W1AW. Signals weren't loud but almost everyone I called came right back.

I suspect Missouri activity was way down. We were hit by a huge storm that wiped out Saturday.


Posts: 17480

« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2011, 07:13:04 PM »

The local club and ARES groups had a joint field day.  I was the only CW operator, and made more
contacts than the rest of the stations combined - about 200 on QRP.  Was lucky to have 15m open
this year.  40m was mostly West Coast stuff, but I did have an Alaskan station answer my CQ FD
during the day.

The site was a 2800' overlook with a great view from NE to South.  (From Oregon we can just point
our beams East and work everyone.)  The ground dropped sharply about 40' down to a road, then
>35 degree slope downwards for a few hundred feet.  We put up a 3-element triband yagi at 28',
making sure it was close enough to the edge to get a low angle of radiation.  I used a 80m horizontal
loop that was strung into the trees across the road, so it was horizontal from my tent (but 40' in the
air at the far side.)

The SSB and digital folks complained it was difficult to be heard.  Given the antennas some of them
were using, I'm not surprised.  I had my K2 set at 100Hz bandwidth and worked about 20 contacts / hour
on average on 40, 20 and 15m.  The old Matchbox tuned up the loop with ease - the feedline was an
extra 5' of wire on each end, enough to reach the tuner inside the tent.

I'm sure I could have worked more stations, but I drove home at 10pm and only got an hour of
operating time the next morning.

Posts: 128

« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2011, 05:59:44 AM »

Normally QRP is not my gig, however this weekend I was able to work W0TPP Larry in Missouri from our JSARS club field day site in Toms River New Jersey with 1 Watt.  Grin

The QSO started at 100 watts from my TenTec Jupiter and Mosely TA33jr as it normally would.  Just to check the propagation out I backed the TT's pa down from 100 all the way to 1 watt and was still solid copy.

The best part of it was Larry was running a flex w/ recording and was able to play back the QSO. 

So it seems that life is in fact long enough for QRP.

73 KC2UML Rory

Posts: 499

« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2011, 11:26:08 AM »

I always loved working QRP in general. A few years ago a friend of mine and myself set up QRP / Portable for field day. At that time I used my FT-817 and a dual band (20/40) dipole. We had a great afternoon. We were able to work everything we heard.
I've been after our local club to do a QRP field day but they show no interest. 100 watts is as low as they want to go.
Our local chapter of the QCWA has been doing QRP field day for years.

QRP portable by itself is lots of fun and the field day end of it just adds that much more to the mix.


Posts: 2100

« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2011, 04:22:51 AM »

   Field day I was at my camp sitting in my canoe tied to the dock with my MFJ cub (2w),auto jump start battery and coax feed line going to shore to a nvis 40m dipole 6 ft. off ground(half ass maritime mobile).Made many local contacts out to about 200 mi.Great Maine style fun on the lake.I do the same thing in the winter from my ice fishing shack using a homebrew(Phil Silas-AD5X) design portable vertical antenna with great DX results.Life to short for QRP?,at my age I want to drag it out as long as possible.

    73  Jim

Posts: 10

« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2011, 03:15:17 PM »

I went camping to a state park with a K1, 703, my 4:1 balun and some wire. This was the first year I left home for FD. Ran both rigs at different times into a 70 foot end-fed vee with counterpoise - worked great with either rig. I will probably do the same thing next year - fun and enjoyed the quiet of the woods. Terry - km0u

Posts: 17480

« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2011, 07:14:04 PM »

Quote from: KU3X
...I've been after our local club to do a QRP field day but they show no interest. 100 watts is as low as they want to go...

This is at least the second year this club has tried QRP.  Most of the participants are not regular QRP operators
and took a rather relaxed approach, often with somewhat compromised antennas that they normally use on
their RV.  In another corner was the ARES trailer that had reasonably good antennas (though they could be
better for 40 and 80) and operated SSB.  Both groups probably would have easily made more than 2.5x the
number of contacts at 100W.  Certainly it would have been much less frustrating for the operators.  (This
was not as organized as the Field Day operations at most other clubs I've seen.)

But I don't think I could have worked enough more stations at 100W to make up for the point differential.
Possibly:  50 QSO's per minute would be hard to maintain without running out of stations, but I might have
been able to hold a frequency and run stations with a good antenna. 

Certainly for QRP you want to use the best antenna you have space for.  We had room for an extended
double zepp on 80m, and many antennas weren't even full sized for 40m.
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