[VHFcontesting] From N6NB - A roving for seniors, not just beginners

Zack Widup w9sz.zack at gmail.com
Fri Mar 11 00:08:16 EST 2016

Is this setup good for anything besides grid circling?

73, Zack W9SZ

On Thu, Mar 10, 2016 at 8:41 PM, James Duffey <jamesduffey at comcast.net>

> N6NB asked me to post this for him as he cannot post directly to
> VHFContesting. I am happy to do that for him.- Duffey
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Thanks to James Duffey for his analysis of how the new assistance
> rule is working out.  What he says matches what I've observed as
> well.  Well done!
> I also want to follow up on what Duffey said about the 10-band
> "antenna-free" station shown in the QST article about the September,
> 2015 VHF contest.
> Duffey says having 10 bands (including antennas) in one small package
> that will fit on a car's passenger seat would be good for beginners.
> That's true, but it was designed for the other end of the spectrum:  senior
> citizens who may have 50+ years experience in amateur radio.  Some of
> us are now finding it difficult to climb a ladder and then hoist anything
> bulky onto a car roof.  Climbing a ladder while carrying a "toolbox"
> station aloft seems much harder than it was just a few years ago.
> So I started building stations with 10 bands in a single package that fits
> on a car seat, including antennas.  The maiden voyage for one of those
> stations was last September.   A photo of it ended up in QST, but the
> caption isn't quite right.  It said the #3, #4 and #5 finishers in the
> rover category where using those compact stations.
> Actually, only the #4 and #5 rovers were using them.  The #3 finisher was
> W6TE, using his often-photographed red Dodge diesel truck.  It very
> definitely has external antennas--big ones.  The point I was trying to
> make in my September soapbox item was that when W6TE roved
> alongside two stations using the car-seat packages, they worked
> the same distant stations on the same bands as W6TE did.
> This is not to say that the "antenna-free" stations perform as well as
> W6TE's setup with its long Yagis and loop Yagis.  Of course, the
> WA5VJB PC-board log periodic Yagi that I'm using only delivers a
> few dB of gain.  However, this particular model works on five bands
> (902 through 5.7 GHz).  The LPY, plus a small dish, can yield respectable
> performance in a package that fits on a car seat.  The "rubber duck"
> antennas used for 6, 2, 222 and 432 are admittedly a compromise.
> It's also feasible to use mobile "mag mount" whips on the lower bands
> without losing much portability.  Then the car-seat antennas
> are only used on 902 and up.
> The whole point of this is to still be able to rove when hoisting a "tool
> box" setup onto a roof platform has become too difficult.
> The final section of the roving page on N6NB.com now has a descrip-
> tion of the smallest 10-band station-on-a-car-seat.   Within a day or
> so I hope to add a section with photographs of a still-newer 10-band
> station that also fits on a car seat.  That one uses DEMI transverters
> rather than DB6NT hardware, so it's a little larger than the one shown in
> QST.  But it's still small enough for one old guy to carry it and place it
> on
> a car seat.
> 73, Wayne, N6NB
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