The job has been getting quite seriously in the way of my play time recently. As inconvenient as it is, I guess there wouldn't be much playtime without the job!
First thing to report is that myself and my mate Vince, G0ORC, took the trek down to ML&S in Surrey for their open day, there site is here:
Vince bought all sorts of stuff including a tube linear; the net result is that I have bought his old solid state Almeritron linear from him as his purchase was a replacement:
It looks like this:
And there's a very heavy matching 50V PSU to go with it:
So the acquisition of this linear has triggered yet another "I haven't got enough space" session in the shack. I've ended up bodging a new shelf to put this on:
So it's all kind of fitted OK.
The second thing to report is that when I was at the ML&S open day, I purchased a replacement for my wire Windom antenna. I picked up a Radio Works Carolina Windom 80 Compact:
What I failed to spot was that the "droop" on the folded element is 15 feet! It's not drawn to scale at all and I ended up in a total pickle.
To start with the existing Windom had got a bit wet in the coax connections; the entire length of coax was shot - how it was working in beyond me - this picture is of the shack end of the line, some 15-20m from where the water is getting in:
So, duff coax plus I managed to destroy the existing antennas line isolator (that's the bit at the bottom of the vertical resonating part) when I unscrewed the connector.
I now had the existing antenna broken, the new antenna knotted in the trees and clearly never going to fit (with the droops) into my back garden and generally in a total muddle.
I ended up ordering a Windom 80 Special from Walters & Stanton plc:
And finally, after much cursing in the dark after work on a few evenings this week, it's finally up. Just to add to my pain I added a pulley to the pole so (I thought) I wouldn't have to take the whole thing down just to get at the wire antenna. Hah! The pulley and pole acted like a great lever and turned the vertical pole into a banana! Down in all had to come again:
The house is kind of looking like this now, how I don't get complaints I am not too sure:
So all in all, a rather expensive exercise. New antennas (2) and new coax was about £400 all told! I suppose the old antenna had been with me since the mid 90s so it didn't really owe me anything.
Here's the mandatory cat picture:
All looking good, though, egh?