[CQ-Contest] Contesters Nightmare - Lack of Gas

KWIDELITZ at delphi.com KWIDELITZ at delphi.com
Mon Oct 6 12:14:31 EDT 1997

No, I don't run gas. But in CQP I ran out of it. No, I didn't run out of
energy and lose my concentration. I ran out of helium and lost my 160 meter
balloon vertical.

I put up the balloon late Friday afternoon, since CQP starts at 9am local
time. When I got home Friday night, I noticed the balloon didn't seem to
have full lift and the antenna was drooping. I pulled the balloon down,
secured it to the balcony "launching pad," and figured I'd take a break and
fill it up Saturday night right before I moved to 160. I'd only need it up
for an hour or two.

So Saturday night I take a break, run up to the balcony, and start to fill
the balloon. I got lucky and actually felt some gas coming out and found a
very small pinprick sized leak. I asked my son to hold the balloon and was
just about to apply a patch when the balloon popped. I got a replacement
balloon but after it was about 1/4 inflated, I ran out of helium.

73. Ken, K6LA - Ken Six Los Angeles, KWIDELITZ at DELPHI.COM

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