2022-04-14 mk’s Word – Back in the saddle

PUE seems to think I should resume writing for the OARC, so here goes…

What’s mk been doing since the Groundwave went away in December 2021? (By the way, thanks to IGJ for hanging in there as Groundwave wrangler for so long.)

Well, not as much as before. I’ve stopped doing public service events. It hasn’t made much difference up to now, but with things opening up and events re-starting, its time to leave those tasks to a new crew.

Speaking of new crew, there have been Basic candidates sprouting out of the snowbanks as the spring thaws. Whether it is the RAC on line courses, study guides, or a variety of pdfs available, nobody seems to be just scraping by. They all seem to be well prepared and getting well above the bar. I expect they are going to be on the New Hams Ottawa Net (20:00 Tuesday on CRA) and/or listening on the resurrected Pot Lid Net (19:30 Sunday on 144.095 CW).

On the air, my activity has been mostly contesting during weekends. The only exception to that has been the Capital City and Pot Lid Nets. Not much homebrewing recently, although this afternoon I decided to start burying the radials I have in the back yard (I have a back yard, not a back lawn). With the recent rain, the ground is as soft and easy to dig as it gets. I’ll probably add a few more radials before I get tired of it. Maybe once that is done, I will think about putting up a vertical to make use of all that effort.

The last vertical I had was an 80 m rubber duck, a helically would vertical wrapped around some plastic conduit I put up. It never worked well, but optimism is high this time of year. I could use something better than I have for the kitchen station.

I’m still thinking about my 160 m compact loop. I got some nice fat copper up onto the flat roof (that was a chore and a half), but still have to figure out how to pick it up so it isn’t under the snow in this country’s other season. It would also be nice if it couldn’t blow off the roof into the neighbour(s). I think I will have to make some sort of stand out of my stock of 2x4s. A trip to the home despot isn’t trivial when you don’t drive.

Once the city gets the crud off the streets it will be time to swap my daily walk for a bike ride and who knows, maybe even some more portable operations again.

Stay tooned

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