The Airwaves have been pretty busy lately, especially on CW. This is the time of year that activities using all modes of operation begin to rise with increased activity due to freedoms that all Americans are now witnessing thanks to the Coronavirus vaccine. But for CW operations, operating Amateur Radio has been nothing less than fantastic. It was noticeable during the Perrin Field Event which ended a week ago as the 30 meter band didn’t want to close at night, and then the CQ Worldwide WPX CW contest this past weekend. WOW!!!. The WARC bands, including 6 meters were wide open. It was literally amazing. I would have never thought that such good operating times would come again. People seem to be fired up and want to be involved in operating on the radio. The hobby is getting back to what it used to be, and that’s – FUN. CW is ALIVE AND WELL!!!
After those two events, and with the upcoming newsletter, I’ve had my hands full. Being retired, I can afford to play just a little more than most people. But I still seem to run short of time doing all I want to do in this hobby. There’s antenna building, as I’m prepping for Field Day 2021. There are contests and special events, and now there’s a national Special event coming called ARRL Field Day on the weekend of June 26 and 27. Information concerning the rules for Field Day can be found here – http://www.arrl.org/field-day-rules. But for the GCARC, there’s still another club event to take place before Field Day. On June 5th, club members will meet at Doug Hotalen’s (KG5QPI) Hobby House in WhitesBoro to test antennas to be used on Field Day, to also include the testing of the LightBulb antenna, that will be used in a contest in late summer. The club radio – the TS-2000 will be setup so that members can learn how to properly use it on field day. I may give the TS2000 a shot at working CW. I encourage every member of this club to join us at Doug’s Hobby House on June 5th, which happens to be next weekend. Make plans to be there and you just may learn something about antennas and amateur radio in general.
Other things that I want to accomplish this year is to finally finish my CW go-kit that I will use for POTA. Lately, I’ve been running POTA from my car, but I would really enjoy trying to run an event from a totally remote location, using strictly battery power or solar in a field or a totally remote location. I’m thinking up ideas for another magnetic loop I’d like to build to use with the go-kit that I can carry with either a backpack or suitcase. But it’s now been a month since I’ve operated in a POTA event, because I just have so much to do. Several months back, I wanted to start building a motorized satellite antenna to see if I could use a satellite to successfully make a CW contact. But time seems to be my enemy these days. And there’s my poor wife, who has to put up with me and all of my ham radio fanatics that I do each and every day. She puts up with everything and sometimes I feel that I take advantage of her allowances. She has no interest in the hobby, so yes, I have to also make time to do things with my wife. Lately, she took an interest in fishing, and lately we’re not having much luck catching anything. And yes, the thought has crossed my mind to bring along a go-kit while fishing. I think in this case, that’s a bad idea. My wife most likely would not have much patience with me if I were to break-out a CW key while we were fishing. Other than the relaxing sport of fishing, my wife is active in badminton and wants me to stay active with that sport with her. I haven’t figured out how to use a CW key while playing, so badminton is not of keen interest to me.
I keep thinking of what I would be doing today if I weren’t so deeply involved in Amateur Radio. At this point in time, I cannot truly answer that question. For me in retirement, I now live for each and every day and try to make the best of it. One bright side of the hobby is now my son Chris (K5KDE) is pretty involved in the hobby, something I never seen coming. He’s not interested in CW, but that’s OK, because we have a common interest in digital. We spent a wonderful time during Winter Field Day working together during the event.
On another note that is not related to CW besides the newsletter publication, there’s this website (graysoncountyarc.org) that I originally put together for the club. You may have noticed that the website has taken on a new look. Angel, N5APJ, has taken personal interest in changing it up a little, and with her expertise in working with WordPress, the website looks quite different than original. She has the authorization from Ron, our club president to help make the website better. It’s still a work in progress, but I would like to hear your comments or criticisms of the website as you see it now. If there’s something you would like to see changed or added, come to the next club meeting and give us some ideas.
Finally, as mentioned in the May newsletter, this and future editions the ‘CW Corner’ column will only be found on this website. The newsletter will contain a link to the ‘CW Corner’ article each month. I hope that everyone that reads my articles enjoys them.