Skip to main content

KH6JRM's Amateur Radio Blog

I had an interesting experience on Saturday (04 June 2011) that proves that I'm not as smart as I thought.  Following a long day at the radio station news room, I looked forward to some relaxation at the amateur radio station.  Afterall , there is just so much "doom and gloom" one can stand in the news business.  Anyway, before I left, I picked up a flash flood watch and thunderstorm warning for Hawaii Island, something that occurs frequently from April to June around here.  Since the weather radar showed my Laupahoehoe QTH out of the danger zone, I figured I would squeeze in a few hours of relaxed cw until the storms were due to hit around 1900W.  Wrong...when I arrived home, I figured there was sufficient time to work the rig and still attend a small graduation party for one of neighbor's daughters at the Laupahoehoe Gym.  So, in my haste, I disconnected all cables, feedlines, and rigs just in case the QTH lost power due to wind and rain (that happens frequently here).  After I disconnected the twin lead from the inverted "v" and attached the feed line to a 8-foot ground stake, removed the 4:1 balan from the garage wall, and disconnected all electronic equipment (including the stove, water heater, and refrigerator), all preparations for the late evening weather appeared normal.  Big surprise.  Just as I entered the house, a flash caught my eye and, in less than a second, a big thunderboomer split the air.  In the rush of events, I had neglected to lower the fiberglass mast in the back yard...the rod was badly burned and the twin lead was largely vaporized.  Other than losing the mast, nothing was damaged. I was lucky my stupidity hadn't done me in.  It will take a few days to get things back to normal.  The under-the-house loop is fine and everything in the QTH is fine.  No appliances were damaged and all my electronic equipment checked out alright.  One never knows what Nature will throw at you...never a dull moment along the Hamakua Coast.

Have a good day and disconnect when in doubt.  I have no desire to meet St. Peter at this time.  Aloha es 73 de KH6JRM.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

G5RV Multi Band HF Dipole Antenna. Post #1555.

If you can't see the video, please insert this title URL into your browser search box: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aeNHIQ_j4Dk This well-produced and richly illustrated tutorial on the classic G5RV HF Dipole Antenna was presented to the Brandon Amateur Radio Society in Brandon, Florida in 2017 by Bernie Huth (W4BGH).  Bernie does an excellent job of  explaining the pros and cons of this popular HF antenna from the late Louis Varney (G5RV).  Although Varney envisioned his design primarily as a 3/2 wavelength antenna for the 20 meter Amateur Radio band, radio amateurs have used the antenna for multiband use.  The G5RV is an excellent choice for the 20 meter band.  Performance on other HF Amateur Radio bands is good enough to qualify as stand alone HF antenna if you can only erect one HF antenna. For the latest Amateur/Ham Radio news and information, please visit these websites: http://www.HawaiiARRL.info. http://www.arrl.org. http://www.arrl.org/arrl-audio-news (a wee

Amateur Radio Bicycle Mobile Setup. Post #1554.

If you can't see the video, please insert this title URL into your browser search box: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zWb-KnkGdY. Here's a way to use Amatuer/Ham Radio while you work on shedding a few pounds in useful exercise.  Why not equip your bicycle for 2 meter/70 cm mobile operation? In this short, well-made video, "taverned" shows us how he used a mag mount antenna, a simple C clamp, and a basic ground system to convert his mountain bike into a mobile station.  The project is straight forward, simple, and gives you emergency communications while you peddle down the road. For the latest Amateur/Ham Radio news and information, please visit these websites: http://www.HawaiiARRL.info. http://www.arrl.org. http://www.arrl.org/arrl-audio-news (a weekly podcast which is updated each Friday afternoon). https://hamradiohawaii.wordpress.com. https://bigislandarrlnews.com. https://amateurradionewsinformation.com (Amateur Radio News & Information).

An 80-Meter Vertical Helix

Like many amateur radio operators, I live on a small lot surrounded by neighbors, utility lines, and civic-minded citizens concerned about the "attractiveness" of my community.  Whether by design or outright fear, I've adopted the "stealth" approach to ham radio antennas.  It's the old "out of sight, out of mind" idea applied to amateur radio antennas. The amateur radio press is full of articles describing the struggle of amateur radio operators to pursue their hobby under the burdensome regulations of CC & Rs, HOAs, and other civic minded citizens who object to antenna farms.  So far, my modest verticals, loops, and inverted vees have blended well with the vegetation and trees bordering my small backyard.  Vertical antennas have always been a problem because of the limited space for a radial system.  There are times, however, where a shortened vertical for the lower HF bands (such as 80/75 meters) is necessary where horizontal space is lack