So… that new Spiderbeam? Somebody had to test it. Properly! Only candidate: yours truly, rusty K5WW. Who absolutely hates RTTY contests 😉
But: as luck would have it, the weekend after the new Spiderbeam was installed was also the weekend of the annual Japan Amateur Radio Teleprinter Society’s (JARTS) contest.
It’s quite fun, actually. Operators exchange their ages, YLs get to obscure theirs by using “00” instead of their real age and multi-operator stations send “99”.
Time was a bit limited this weekend; but I put in about 6.5 hours of time, 3.5 on Saturday afternoon and 3 on Sunday afternoon:
In those 6.5 hours I made 253 (hopefully valid!) QSOs on 3 different bands: 15, 20 and 40.
At times things went quite fast!
I logged a total of 26 DXCCs, with the majority in the USA. Of course, this being a Japanese contest they were well-represented too, with 56 of them in the log:
As stated earlier: in this contest we send our ages in our report. The most common age this time was 67. Ouch, you old farts! Just kidding… 🙂
Congratulations to “old” friend Jerry W4UK (Flanders!), Mr. Wire Dipoles Only, who turned 87 years young this year, and to KE0NHQ who at 37 years “old” is the youngest in this KN5S log.
I only logged a few dozen stations on 40 meters, even though I wanted to test the 40 meter addon longer. That was due to time restrictions, not being able to test it properly after dark. The first conclusion was that the 40 meter dipole works quite well; but is a bit noisy. But that’s not all that surprising given it’s 60 feet above ground level.
The real test came later, after I got back home. I logged into the main station remotely, just to listen to 40 meters FT8. I saw 3DA0WW (no relation) pop up on 40, called them once, and immediately got a (good!) report back. Better yet: a few days later I discovered that the TS-590 was set to 25 Watts!
In short: everything works beautifully; and I can honestly say that the 40 meter dipole puts out a killer signal – compared to what we have been using in past years.
Let’s hope the weather goes easy on us for a few years 🙂