Monthly Archives: July 2009

New antennas up in the air.

It was hot this afternoon but I was able to get two of the three planned antennas up. Tomorrow is the ARRL UHF Contest so hopefully I’ll be ready (still have to trim a limb or two out of a tree).

Top antenna is 23cm (1278MHz) and the lower one is 70cm (432MHz). There will be a 2m (144MHz) antenna added later (tomorrow?).

Smilies are universal…

I caught a conversation on one of the lists I subscribe to that was in Farsi(?). I had to laugh as my eye caught a smiley at the end of one of the sentences. That made me laugh. I guess smileys don’t need to be translated! 🙂

Need a new laptop

Good golly my laptop has got to be knocking on death’s doorstep. Of course this laptop is going on six years old so and has been through the hell that is my book bag, on a bike, through college. Maybe it is time to consider getting a new one.

So I’m looking at three systems: Dell Inspiron 15n, Dell Inspiron Mini 10v, and the eRacks CUMULUS. All three are within my price range, more or less, and will come pre-installed with Ubuntu (which is a good sign that it will work well with Fedora).

Does anyone have experience with any of these systems?

HDD Failure?

I’ve run F9, F10, and CentOS 5.3 on my home server and after a couple of weeks I’ll boot the system up and be greeted by a lovely GRUB>. Not good. Not sure what’s going on with it, either, but I’m starting to lean towards a HDD failure. Only thing is that I actually have two hard drives that are mirrored and the RAID controller says the mirror is “healthy”. Looks like I’ll be trying to get Plan B working tomorrow. And just when I get everything setup just the way I like it.

Received 23cm antenna

Came home to find a long box on the doorstep. Opened it up to find my new 23cm (1.2GHz) antenna ready for assembly. In less than an hour I had my twenty-four element loop yagi put together and ready for talking. Now I just need to get some N connectors put on some coax and get this antenna in the air!

I’ll post pictures later.

VHF/UHF Update

Well, things took a slight turn for the worst last night. After receiving the UT-10 and the coax, N-connectors, and rotator control wire I realized that the pole I have stuck up in the air isn’t wide enough to support the rotator. Apparently the pole is 1″ in diameter and I need at least a quarter inch more for the rotator to grab on to. Of course not knowing this I went down to Lowe’s last night and purchased a 1″x10′ pipe to mount all the antennas on which will no longer be of use. Not sure about what to do with the lower portion (under the rotator) but I’m pretty sure I can just return the pipe I bought and buy a larger one.

I also sat down with a pencil and paper last night and figured out how I was going to mount the three antennas on the pole. Since the 1.2GHz antenna is a loop antenna and can’t tolerate anything metal in the middle of the field that antenna will be at the top of the pole. 14″ lower will be the 70cm antenna and then 79″ below that will be the two meter antenna. This will leave enough room for the h-plane of each antenna to be unobstructed by the other antennas for a better performance.

Now if I can only figure out how to get them up in the air.