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2023 Field Day Thoughts


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I was licensed in 1962 but never participated in Field Day until 2011. Since then, I made sure that nothing interfered with operating during FD. I have several observations about FD this year. 

In the past, FD was uncomfortably hot. Even when the weather preceding FD was comfortable, on Thursday, or Friday at the latest, it turned hot. With the cool weather we experienced this year, I was expecting the worst. It didn't happen; unless in direct sunlight, it was warm but quite comfortable. 

In previous years, it seemed like everyone calling CQ on CW was cranking along somewhere above 25 wpm and when I could hear a responding station sending much more slowly and asking for repeats, the speed demons didn't slow down. Hmmm. I think that they lost more time repeating the exchange than they saved by going fast. This year, however, while there were still a few still blasting away, a lot of stations were holding the speed down to somewhere below 20 wpm and, when someone responded at a lower speed, they slowed down without being asked for repeats. Many times they slowed down below the speed of the responding station.

In the past, out of between 100 and 150 contacts made during the various FDs, only perhaps 6 to 10 stations were class xD. This year, there were a lot of xD stations. 

In any event, it was a quite enjoyable FD. This year, in addition to my 15-40 Elecraft K1, I had an 80 meter QCXmini. I've noticed during the morning slow speed CW roundtables (Sat & Sun 0730 Local, 3.565MHz) that QSB seems quite common. I attributed it to going into daylight hours. Saturday evening, I switched to 80m at about 2200 Local time and noticed that even at night the QSB was there. But I still made about 20 contacts on 80 so I'm happy with that little rig.

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Well Lind, we had a pretty good Field Day also. The group I've worked with for the past five years (N3IC - Randallstown ARC – 3A (MDC) - located at Washington Monument State Park) performed, we believe, well. We did about 50 QSOs more than last year. I found the noise floor was high overnight and in the morning - on all bands. I operated from 3 to 5PM on Saturday, from 4 to 6AM on Sunday and I closed out my station from 1 to 2PM on Sunday. The station I was working phone was an Elecraft K4; a beauty of a machine.

I'll post some photos shortly.

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Did you get any photos/video? I made several pictures of the equipment before it was set up with the idea of using them in a voice over video describing the setting up of a cheap 'n' dirty Field Day station. Not including any operating of the station; was more interested in operating than photography. I'm not sure if I will be pasting any of the pix on line. Oh, what the hell? Why not? I'm planning on using these in a video.

20230624 - Backpack_fb - DS90635 - 8256x4644.jpg

20230624 - K1 in Backpack_fb - DS90640 - 7440x4185.jpg

20230624 - Backpack Station_fb - DS90649 - 8256x4644.jpg

20230624 - Paper Forms_fb - DS90660 - 8256x4644.jpg

20230624 - Antenna Reel - DS90702_fb - 6636x3733.jpg

20230624 - Mast_ns - DS90669_fb - 8256x5504.jpg

20230624 - Mast Top - DS90677 - 6686x3761.jpg

20230624 - Antenna End - DS90688_fb - 6938x3903.jpg

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