Radio Prepping: Ham Radio “Super Antenna II”

Ure is a gen-u-ine QRQ Extra Class Ham Radio geek.  QRQ means high speed Morse Code and some of us believe it enables a “direct digital” part of the brain.  Extra Class because there’s no higher certification offered.  And geek?  You don’t need help on that part… What is a Super-Antenna A Super-Antenna is something anyone can make and easily deploy, costs less than $200-bucks, and has amazing performance. Super-Antenna I, which I put up …

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Prepping: Antenna School 101 and 605

This being a holiday weekend, a young man’s heart turns to what?  Ham Radio Antennas, of course!!! Antennas 101:  Short Course In the event of an actual emergency, there are really only two antennas that work, provide reasonable gain and don’t require fancy ground systems to radiate pretty well. HF Bands:   On the 80-10 meter ham bands from 3.5 to 29 MHz, or so, the easiest antenna is called a “dipole.”  Fed with a …

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Prepping: Ham Radio Weekend (2 of 2)

In the Saturday report we got into the basics of restoring an old transmitter.  Like restoring an old car, what could be so hard, right? Well…Let’s sit back and take a look at the radio chassis after taking off the front panel: This is after taking the sheet metal off from around the “tuning knob” (VFO = variable frequency oscillator) in the middle of the chassis. A series of long stand-off spacers holds it above …

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Prepping: Ham Radio Weekend! (1 of 2)

My late friend and colleague, Don Stoner (W6TNS, sk) had a marvelous saying about ham radio.  “Ham Radio is the King of Hobbies….” There was a good deal of truth to that.  Few realize, for example,  that King Hussein of Jordan was a very active ham and if you snoop around YouTube, you can find things like this conversation between the King (on the ground in Amman, Jordan) talking to another famous ham – Owen …

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Prepping: Project Big Ears Part-2

For this to make a lot of sense, you will want to revisit the original September 30, 2018 article Project Big Ears here. The goal of the project, to refresh, is to build a high-performance Beverage Antenna using commonly available parts.  That first article was mostly the theory of what the project was about.  Today, we’re going to do a walk-through of the project up and operating. First, though, some perspective:  See the 295-foot long …

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Prepping: Project Big Ears

OK, serious preppers:  Time to pay attention because George’s Radio School is now in session. At this point, a number of ham radio operators will look at the antenna to the right and proclaim they know all about it and then skip on to the next article. In point of fact, however, real DX (dx being short for long distant) reception, is much more of a skill-set than most hams will admit. Sure, the big …

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Prepping: Your Electronics, Robotics, and Ham Workbench

OK, you wake up tomorrow morning and the SHTF has actually happened.  People have gone crazy and there’s been a surprise EMP blast. Phones are down, your power is “iffy:” and you don’t know what will happen next… You whip out your EMP Emergency kit – and what’s in it? Good-quality shortwave radio.  A couple of FRS radios for neighbors.  A couple of 2-meter ham handhelds – preprogammed with local fire, sheriffs, police and EMS.  …

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