Sunday, April 22, 2007

New Toy!

As you may know from previous posts, I've been waiting for a few weeks for my new Buddistick to arrive. There had been a delay because they ran out of the bags that they ship/store in and apparently the manufacturer was slow in filing the order.

Yesterday morning, the postman came up to the front door carrying a box, which I assumed was for someone else, since the only thing that I was expecting was the Buddistick and Budd, W3FF, hadn't told me that mine had shipped yet.

Surprise! Turns out that Budd and his son Chris had gotten the bags in and immediately shipped out my order (and many others), and didn't really have a chance to notify me. I'm not complaining.

Even nicer was the fact that we finally had a decent, no, great weekend, weather-wise. Beautiful sunny days, highs in the upper 70s, very little wind, so it was a great time to be outside.

The only minor glitch was that Budd had accidentally shipped the wrong instruction sheet in with my order, but based on what I knew, plus finding an older version of the instructions on the Buddipole Users Group (B.U.G) I really had very little trouble setting up the antenna. (Budd responded to my email about the wrong instructions and send me the correct version a few hour later). Getting it resonant on 40m is a bit tricky (and in fact, I've emailed Budd asking for some tips on this), but I did set it up on the lawn, working at the patio table with my 706 MkIIG plugged into a little 25A switcher power supply (my "travel setup"), and made a few contacts, mostly to folks in the Michigan QSO Party on 40m. One nice thing about these kinds of contests is that except for a few really big stations who are always really busy, the guys in these contests will usually have a few minutes to chat, and I asked for "real" signal reports from a few of them. The reports varied from a low of 33 to 59 (the best possible report; that's a blog entry for another time) I then switched to 20m, and made a handful of DX contacts into mostly central Europe. I don't think I'll be competing with guys with big beams and amplifiers, but for portable use this should be just fine.

Nothing back from ICTA on the form to use to send in my credit card information. If nothing shows up in the next day or soon, I guess I'll fax the info to them, and maybe just ask on the fax for the authorization form.

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