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Showing content with the highest reputation since 03/27/2020 in all areas

  1. 1 point
    Working from home, went outside for lunch and had a visitor. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBiM_vtaHY_fXuZCGhhY-PQ
  2. 1 point
    Well great. If I make it through this pandemic alive I'll give you a call. -- Tom W3TDH
  3. 1 point
    On the first point, no you did not, and as though I were not impressed enough with you as is, I am more so now. On the second point, absolutely. I love a challenge.
  4. 1 point
    I should point out that I worked as a control electrician and was good enough that other electricians would ask for my help with control wiring challenges. I've done controls for pharmaceutical laboratories that handle dangerous pathogens. I passed the field Underwriters Laboratory Inspection on both of those. I also worked for 2 years as a fire alarm installation and repair electrician which involved a lot of control work to integrate the fire detection with elevator, kitchen hood system, fire sprinkler controls, and central station signalling systems. I share all that to say to anyone reading the control schemes above that I AM, IN FACT, A PROFESSIONAL CONTROL ELECTRICIAN! Even another electrician who has not done extensive control work should not try to devise a power transfer assembly because it is literally a devastating injury and death prevention task. I'm not being arrogant in taking this task on. Life and death control systems, such as elevator control and fire alarm systems were my bread and butter for years. I know how to make and read ladder diagrams and control schematics. Attempting to design a one off power transfer control assembly would not be something most electricians would know how to do and, more importantly, know how to test. I'm not going to describe how transfer assembly testing is done less I tempt unqualified people to attempt it. It requires tools and equipment that most electricians do not have access to, let alone most AROs. As too why I left solar power for my home to last, it is because of it's cost and the amount of work required. My order of back up power improvements, to my home, is based on short term effectiveness followed by long term effectiveness but only from a continuity of emergency radio operations point of view. Making the changes in the transfer equipment would go gradually from strictly manual; which is what I have now; to remote manual. Then from remote manual to partial automatic. And from partial automatic to fully automatic transfer. Now that you made me look at this again I'm thinking that I will bypass the middle step and go to fully automatic with load shedding. That will save a lot of work and maybe lower the total costs. What may push me right back to a laboratory listed 200 ampere Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS) is the possibly prohibitive cost of 200 ampere and 30 Ampere solenoid trip breakers needed to open the Service Disconnecting Means breaker, which would disconnect the entire building from utility power; and shed the Air Conditioner load which, at least for now, would not be within the power budget of the present generator. I have not priced them yet but I seem to remember, from my working electrician days, the cost of solenoid trip breakers being quite high. I don't know if I ever told you that I've done radio equipment shelter builds from Tierra del Fuego to Alaska and from Uganda to French Frigate Shoals. Almost all of those involved a solar power array, charging controls, and battery bank. Some of the other power sources that we used were wind generation, thermal electric, and even water power on one site. Water power is a maintenance hog so we had to have a dammed good reason to resort to that. Many of the sights had some sort of Engine Alternator Set (generator) for back up power. LP gas was the fuel of choice for those. It will store without deteriorating almost forever or at least until the container corrodes through from the outside. It is also gentler on the engine itself than most other fuels and yet still has fairly high power density in Volt Amperes per pound. In the deployment arena I would prefer to add in solar as soon as possible but as I'm sure you know that is fairly pricey to do. Improving on what I already have would be more cost effective in the sort term. I have an entire box of used folding solar panels here that I obtained from the left overs of a development project. I've just never taken the time to pull them all out, test each one for function, and begin to acquire the other parts of a transportable solar charging system for batteries. Perhaps you would be willing to help me get to work on that after the pandemic crisis has abated. One of my hesitancies is a complete lack of experience with transportable systems. -- Tom Horne W3TDH
  5. 1 point
    WN3R I started trying to remote my Frederick HF station back in 2006. I was way ahead of the technology. Just a few years ago, I was finally successful in duplicating my local operating style remotely from Rockville. The "Frederick" remote station consists of the following: Elecraft K3, KAT500 - ATU, and KPA500 Amplifier, RemoteRig, PC + TEAMVIEWER, and Green Heron Everywhere system. The "Rockville" remote operating position consists of the following: Elecraft K3/0, Laptop, second monitor, CW paddle, headset, RemoteRig, and TEAMVIEWER - Remote Desktop software. Antennas: 160M inverted "L", 80M sloping dipole fed with Ladder Line (Multiband), 40M dipole, Tribander, 6M beam, and 40M 4-square. 73, Dick, WN3R
  6. 1 point
    Walt Starling; who was a traffic reporter in the Washington DC Area years ago; once said as a snow flurry began to fall "For you new people welcome to the nation's capital were a fella with a bad case of dandruff can lean his head out his car window, scratch his scalp, and create a five mile backup. People here cannot cope with white flakes!" -- Tom Horne W3TDH
  7. 1 point
    There is a great old one out of QST. A raft is aground on a tiny island. Jeeves, the butler, is the only character you ever see in that cartoon series. Jeeves is sending with a key hunched over a battery powered radio. Out of the little shelter on the raft comes His employer's voice, "Tell them we don't have a QSL manager Jeeves and repeat the QRRR" (Amateur Radio SOS of that time now obsolete). QRRR was an amateur radio distress signal which is now strictly for land use because it's use at sea violates the International Telecommunications Union convention on distress signals.
  8. 1 point
    Nothing different, since I am a teleworker...However our local EMCOM has met on line. Plus working to come up on digital. So between family and work, ham is a distant 3rd.
  9. 1 point
    Wow, lots of gear to charge. I really don't think that you'll be doing all this charging for $70 to $100. Rather than give you a long list of actual items to buy, that's research that you can do, I'll give you paths to take from many years of rights and wrongs setting up solar. I'll also invite @W4DOI to chime in because, he too has much experience. The most versatile setup is going to be solar panel + charge controller (mppt or pwm) + battery + any step up or down transformers you might need. Solar panels run different wattages and different prices. I have several different types but my favorite is probably https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B06WWQHV2T/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1. Note that this is only 50W, not mega power, but good enough to charge a battery and run gear. As you will note, the price is $145 and that's just for the panel. Good news is that it comes with a PWM controller. Note that solar controllers tend to give off RFI (more impact on HF than VHF/UHF). Say you get this, now you still need a battery. A reasonable size battery is 50AH. Are you sitting down? A 50AH LiFePO4 battery will run you over $400!!!!! Okay, forget Lithium... if you go for AGM, you're still looking at ±$100. Micro issue... the PWM that comes with this panel has two outputs: 12V and a USB 5V output. What about your Lenovo?? That's likely 19V!! So if you want to power it, you'll need a transformer like this one: https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B01N0PVENT/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1. This is also one that I use. Good news is that it's only $13. So Kyle, I know you were hoping for both a cheap and simple solution, but you won't find it easily. Hate me yet??
  10. 0 points
    The Great Hagerstown Hamfest, Antietam Radio Association W3CWC, for May 2nd has been cancelled/postponed. Looking for future dates...


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