Sunday, February 05, 2017

Winter Field Day 2017 and Portable HF


Winter Field Day 2017
This year I and several friends from the Sangamon Valley Radio Club participated in Winter Field Day from the Clayville Historic Site west of Springfield, IL. Not only was it a chance to get outdoors with friends but it was the first field test of a new HF radio and LiFePO4 battery pack for me.

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I recently bought a Xiegu X108G HF rig for portable HF operating. They are readily available from several suppliers on Amazon.com. It works great as a QRP radio but also allows up to 20W of power if you desire. I love pure QRP operation with CW but with its broader bandwidth requirements 10-15W SSB seems a lot more practical. No, I'm not a purist. I just enjoy operating outdoors.

The X108G is fairly small. Here's a quick comparison to my IC-7200. Sorry for the mess. This was taken the day I unpacked the radio.


The X108G has a small but clear and bright LCD with all the pertinent information clearly shown. Along the right side where you SQL, CMP, and SWR it displays "soft" labels for the corresponding function buttons F1 - F4 to the right.


For Winter Field Day and most of my portable operating I use an end fed wire supported by a 28-foot tall fiberglass pole. For this outing I drove a piece of angle into the ground.



I use Velcro straps to secure the pole in place. There is no picture of the wire going to the top of the pole. You can't see it because it is so thin.


Here's an antenna photo before deployment. You can buy it ready made from the Emergency Amateur Radio Club of Hawaii or you can download the documentation free of charge and make your own.





Here's the rest of the "station". From left to right are 1) The X108G transceiver, a Bioenno Power 9AH LiFePO4 lightweight battery, and a manual MFJ-10610 antenna matcher.


On this particular day I chose to operate from the car because it was cold and windy. You can see from the components that it would be just as easy to toss the items in a small pack for hiking, SOTA, etc. or do "picnic table portable".

73,

Tim N9PUZ



2 comments:

Brian D said...

Great setup, Tim. And the new rig is working great. I had a great signal from you today on 40 meters. Thanks for the nice pics of your winter field day outing! 73 -Brian W3ATT

ka4rur said...

Nice setup -- I also built and use the same antenna -- use to belong to that ARC in Hawaii
when we first started using the antenna ....

Fred/ka4rur