Topband: Peru report....and how to make fireworks with an inverted L

Henry Jack n6xq at
Mon Dec 10 15:33:23 EST 2007

Hola de Peru

160 conditions have been mas o menos in Peru.  We are
in our rainy season over the Andes and the Jungles and
QRN is very high.  My normal routine on high QRN days
is to tune and call the stations I copy.  When
conditions are good I will call CQ.  Dec 7 was a good
day for JA's with about 25 worked near my 1030Z
sunrise.  Conditions were good to the US on Dec 8 and
I worked a 3 hour pileup.  I run 1 kW from a Kenwood
TL-922 and have a short inverted L with only a 40 ft
vertical section supported by bamboo poles strapped to
a tree.(I know,40 ft is short but I am working on
that)  On Dec 8 during the US opening I noticed the
amp tuning differently, but shrugged it off to a
change in environmental conditions.  I should have
know something more serious was happening when the
dogs were continually barking and the XYL was
complaining about TVI.  ( We live in a rural fringe
area TV location but 160 TVI normally is not a
problem).  I didn't find out what was happening until
early the next evening during a QSO with PZ5RA.  My
wife came running into the house shouting that the
tree was on fire.  I ran out but didn't see any fire. 
When she calmed down she explained that there was a
large brilliant yellow fireball accompanied by a high
pitch sound everytime I sent CW.  A visual inspection
showed that the wind blew my once enameled #12
radiator into a branch of the tree.  The branch was
about 4 inches in dia. and the 3 hour pileup created a
nice V notch half way into the branch.

  I have seen some posts on using trees for Inv. L
supports.  Just make sure the wind will not cause the
radiating element to come in contact with the tree.

  I wish to thank everyone for all the QSO's.  It
certainly is more fun being the DX.  I will be on 160
again 21,22 and 23 Dec and then again for the Stew
Perry early in the new year.  If anyone badly needs OA
for a new one, I will do skeds.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone.
Jack  OA4/N6XQ 

Looking for last minute shopping deals?  
Find them fast with Yahoo! Search.

More information about the Topband mailing list