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Sunday, 11 December 2011

It's Just Been Far Tooooo Long...


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:

You can just see the matching transformer on the Windom in the picture above. This was after I had adjusted the pulley arm to be more central to the whole thing.

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?


  1. I just bought a new als 600 and it is do sensitve to rf that I can't get it work mor tha an few moments and the rf protection shuts it off!
    Any suggestions on how to reduce the rf?
    49 meter dipole - off center
    reply at
    ty for anything

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