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KC2UGV
04-26-2014, 08:03 PM
So, I'm going to start venturing into portable QRP stuff. I have the FT-817nd, and a bag to carry it, and a MJF-971 tuner.

So, first questions: What should I do for an antenna? I've been hearing lots about a long-wire, but what lengths should I use for 40/20/10 operation? What bands should I focus on for early morning stuff? 20 seems like the best choice, but, I'm open to suggestions.

What should I replace in the bag? What should I take? What frequencies are considered SSB QRP calling frequencies?

K7SGJ
04-26-2014, 08:43 PM
So, I'm going to start venturing into portable QRP stuff. I have the FT-817nd, and a bag to carry it, and a MJF-971 tuner.

So, first questions: What should I do for an antenna? I've been hearing lots about a long-wire, but what lengths should I use for 40/20/10 operation? What bands should I focus on for early morning stuff? 20 seems like the best choice, but, I'm open to suggestions.

What should I replace in the bag? What should I take? What frequencies are considered SSB QRP calling frequencies?

As far as QRP calling frequencies go, try this http://www.njqrp.org/data/qrp_freqs.html I kind of follow that when I want to hook up with another QRP station. Mostly, I just pretty much go where ever, and people are surprised when I tell them I'm only running a few watts. Digital QRP is fun, as well.

For portable antennas, I have a Buddipole I bought a long time ago. It works well enough, and there are others out there, too. I also carry a longwire a couple hundred feet long that I toss up in the tress when camping or fishing. As long as you use a tuner it will work well, too. I think the buddipole would be a better choice if you didn't have a tuner available, and you could just adjust the antenna/loading coil for a good match to the radio.

As far as best time to operate? Anytime. 20 meters has been going long at night if you want some DX. I find 40 is always fun. Daytime, maybe 15 although 10 is waking up a little bit. I haven't had mine on the WARC bands, and I have no idea why not. I guess I should give it a go.

If nothing else, having a go anywhere rig will help justify getting out and operating away from civilization.

In the bag. Mine is a constant morph. I keep adding shit until it's so heavy, I start all over. To be honest, the things that I use the most are the radio, mic, antenna tuner, a 12 v 7AH gel cell (I take the NiCad pack, too.) charger and the manual, or at least the Nifty manual which is a condensed spiral go to mini-manual with most everything you tend to forget. I also carry a very small paddle for cw, too. I should probably add a solar panel to charge the batteries, but haven't run the gel cell dead yet. Besides, I always have the vehicle to charge it from. I'd probably break the solar panel anyway.

The best way to really know what you will need, is to go out and use it. When I first got mine, I used it in the back yard a lot to become familiar with it, and to see what would be handy to have with me. I'd also take it to one of the parks in town, just for kicks. You'll find it's a fun little radio.

HUGH
04-27-2014, 03:47 PM
I've tried two isolated wire fences (on wooden posts) with a simple L-match and it was good on 40m but useless on 80m. About 2W on SSB worked to about 500 miles from a point on a hillside. I think it just wouldn't load on 80m so that's why.

W9JEF
04-28-2014, 09:35 AM
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I make it a point to listen for QRP signals on 30 meters (no high-power QRM).

Earlier this year, worked a ZL who was running only 2 watts.


"They" say "Life is too short for QRP." Maybe it's the antenna that's too short. :)

WTKX
04-28-2014, 10:18 AM
When I operate portable/QRP, I use a ladder line fed 80M dipole with a manual tuner.
Frequently as a sloper cause it's easier to use just one high support point.

Sometimes a YP-1 Super Antenna beam on one of the bands 20-6.

KC2UGV
05-10-2014, 12:12 PM
When I operate portable/QRP, I use a ladder line fed 80M dipole with a manual tuner.
Frequently as a sloper cause it's easier to use just one high support point.

Sometimes a YP-1 Super Antenna beam on one of the bands 20-6.

I think I'm going to try and get this together (Dipole fed with ladder line). I tried this morning with a dipole, with a tail of 1ft of coax, with the ends in the trees. Not much success after two hours.

Maybe even hunt down a collaspible pole, that goes to 20ft, and collapses down to 4-5ft. I can use it as a hiking stick too :)

K0RGR
05-14-2014, 11:45 AM
A friend of mine likes the Endfedz half wave antennas for portable use, because you only need to get one end up in a tree and you're ready to go. I've used Hamsticks on a tripod with a few wire radials, and they work OK on 20 meters and up.

KA9MOT
05-14-2014, 02:32 PM
I just built a BuddiPole.

I hooked it up to my rig and at 11:17 last night I worked LY10A on 17M with 25W... not exactly QRP, but for a $25, 4 pound portable antenna I was impressed.

KC2UGV
05-14-2014, 05:59 PM
I just built a BuddiPole.

I hooked it up to my rig and at 11:17 last night I worked LY10A on 17M with 25W... not exactly QRP, but for a $25, 4 pound portable antenna I was impressed.

Pretty slick! What mode?