Saturday, October 09, 2010

Crossband into Dot325

The only way I can make the haul lengthwise over the Powell Valley (TN) ridgeline running between Cumberland Gap, TN and Caryville, TN is to use a beam and 35 watts.  Below is the antenna setup.

SAM_0232 (Small)

The 2 meter quarterwave vertical and the DB Products yagi are the antennas I’m using.

SAM_0234 (Small)

The diplexer lets me use only one coax run.  The crossband rig is a Kenwood TN 731. 

SAM_0235 (Small)

The view towards White Oak…

The Kenwood is a little older, but I honestly enjoy using it as much or more than the newer rigs I have.  I use a simplex freq on 2 meters that SERA recommends and the output is set for the Mboro 440 machine.  When funds allow, I’ll replace this with 2 Alinco monobanders running thru an NHRC6 or NHRC7 controller…  one of the few controllers that can handle 2 monobanders.  This will allow IDing on both bands…  as well as being able to remotely enable and disable the repeater, etc.

SAM_0236 (Small)

The “Tank…” a Kenwood TM 731

Thursday, October 07, 2010

443.950 Final Build

The 443.950 has been installed inside the Motorola cabinet provided by WB4IVB.  Air flow throughout the cabinet is good and, more importantly, the rear cabinet door now closes after moving the rails all the way to the front.  I don’t want this to become a playground for mice in the winter months!

SAM_0227 (Small)

The receiver/exciter/amplifier consists of a GE Mastr II Exec conversion done by WB4IVB.  The sensitivity on receive is very good and the amp is pushing 30 Watts into the duplexers.  The duplexers are 250 watt capable DB Products surplus and the controller is a CAT 700.  The 3 remote bases consist of 3 Kenwood monobanders of late 80’s vintage driven by a Doug Hall Remote Base Interface.

SAM_0229 (Small)

My goal is to find a decent site with a secure building to house the repeater.

SAM_0220 (Small)

It takes good ears to hear the weak ones!


443.950 Overview


Remote Base Operation

“Basically…” Part II, Electric Boogaloo

Monday, June 21, 2010

Jonesing For Antenna Space

This is the sight that greeted me the first time I saw the field…

The first thing I did was check out the  height of the press box.  But then I saw it… past the scoreboard…

A self-supporting tower with an empty antenna bay.





Below is a water tower a couple of blocks fron the high school…




More to come…

Steve, W4HKL

Cape Hatteras Antennas

Below are some of the antenna systems I saw on my trip to the Outer Banks.  One thing’s for certain; when you’re at sea-level, you don’t often waste the chance to get on a water tower!





Just a sampling of what was there.  They have a linked 440 system running the length of the island but I didn’t monitor it that much.

There were also several 2 meter repeaters on coast you could hit with an HT from Hatteras Island.

- Steve, W4HKL

Sunday, April 18, 2010

W4HKL Mobile Station

I’m pressed for time today so I’m just going to upload the pictures… 

In the mean time, cruise over to K0BG’s site ( for some really outstanding articles on what it takes to have a really good mobile install.  You won’t find a better site for better info on many different kinds of mobile installations.



My Mobile “QTH”

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>


<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530> 


<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

 <Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Three 15 meter contacts I made today

...or 15 Meters was open this morning!


Steve, W4HKL

Sunday, February 14, 2010

W4HKL Station Antennas


Here are my antennas. Not a lot, but they do what i need them to do. I'm most impressed with the 80 meter Half-Wave End Fed vertical/inverted-L/longwire (you decide what it is!) It tunes form 80 - 10 and seems to do really well 80 -20 meters.

For VHF/UHF, I rely on a Diamond X3200 Triband vertical. I've had it for about 4 years and haven't had a single problem with it. It's mounted above the high eave at one side of the house opposite the repeater antenna. It's not that high above ground, about 20 feet, but the house sits at around 1300 ft. and I'm right at the top of the hill.

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>
Diamond X3200 (click photos for larger image)

For my repeater/remote base, I use a Cushcraft ARX450B... a descendant of the old Ringo Rangers.

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530> 

Cushcraft ARX450B

I mainly got it due to it being rugged, having a feeding method which decouples the antenna from the feedline... and the price was right.

Since mounting it up on the top of the house and feeding it with LMR400 (RG-8X, get behind me, devil!) it has a good shot into the Caryville/Jacksoboro area... with LaFollette and the Campbell Co. side of Hwy 63. I'd say you can hit it mobile from the time you round the curve at the Speedwell Post office.  You should be in it until you’re on I-75. The main thing I want is HT coverage within a 7 mile radius and I think I've got it covered... and then some.  Teh remote base antennas will be a dual band 2 meter/440 and a separate DB Products UHF 7 element yagi aimed at the Middlesboro 442.325 WM4MD repeater.  I’ll be able to work the other UHF repeaters in the surrounding counties of that one as well (if it doesn’t desense too badly with the repeater.)

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

The view from the top of the hill.  Over the roofline lies Jacksboro and

points NE…

The HF is covered by the following system: An Alinco EDX-2 remote autotuner feeding a 126 foot end-fed inverted-L strung up and through the trees. It is fed against an 8' ground rod and is working great (1/2 verticals are not noticeably improved with extensive radial systems; research L. B. Cebik half wave antenna,  AA5TB End Fed Half Wave antenna; etc.)


Some pictures of my HF setup.

<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

The front of the QTH.  The last hill behind the house is it…  on the other side is I-75 and Onieda… behind the camera is Caryville/Jacksboro.


<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

The Alinco EDX-2 autotuner (8 ft ground rod below it)



<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

The base of the antenna


<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530>

The End Fed Half-Wave longwire


<Digimax S500 / Kenox S500 / Digimax Cyber 530> 

The Ground Crew, Buddy and Pugsly


Station W4HKL


HF station (Alinco DX-70, Alinco 32 amp switcher, Gap DSP Module

Rigblaster Plus for PSK31, etc), old IBM pentium M laptop)


The VHF/UHF Tower of “Babble”