N6TR posted the preliminary CW Sprint results earlier in the week. I was hoping for top-10 low power; but, ZF2BJ surprised and bumped me out. However, the really good news is the Golden Log (no copying errors)! This is my second golden log in a Sprint; the first was during the LP Sprint in April 2006. I’m pretty happy with my result because it’s within 20 QSOs of KA9FOX (my closest geographic competitor in the top-10) who has a 100-ft tower with 2-el on 20 and 40.
Scott kicked my butt on 80 and 20. I’ve got about the best domestic 80-meter antenna I can squeeze onto my lot right now. I’m thinking of replacing the TA-33jr at 18 feet with a little more firepower on 20. I’m not sure exactly what, yet, though. I really am looking forward to putting the KT-34XA stack that’s piled next to my folks’ garage up (they won’t mind that one bit, either). But, first things first.
I skipped Sunday School this morning to spend some time with cocoaNEC on my MacBook. (Why go when I’m going to be dreaming about antennas the whole time, anyway?) This is some pretty sweet software. It really lets you manipulate the NEC internals all the while having an EZNEC-style interface for entering wires. It’s a lot better than 4nec2. I’ve been thinking a lot about building a lazy-H (two horizontal collinears stacked vertically) that fires East-West. But, I just don’t quite have the height. This antenna would also be an awesome cloud-burner on 40, although, I hope we move before we get enough sunspots back to really have fun with that.
My biggest problem is working adjacent states on backscatter…I can always hear W9RE and N9CK on 20; but, they can never hear me. I think that the lazy-H would work well for that. My second problem is to be loud enough if we get an Es opening into New England, Texas, or the Southeast. I’ve thought about building a 20-meter 4-square on the roof. But, the material cost is relatively high given the performance. I can’t lay down enough radials to do a parasitic vertical array.
Who knows if any of this will actually happen… I just finally cleaned-up the shack today after months of squalor. It was even a heap for the Sprint, as much as I prefer to have things cleaned up for contests. The buro cards are starting log-jam again. I need to run some more CE/K8GU cards. Speaking of being DX, I’ll be on Crete for a conference during WPX CW. Still haven’t decided whether to bring a radio or not. Sarah might not be too happy if I spent a lot of time at the conference and on the radio…although, SV9/K8GU is tempting especially because Greece is a CEPT country and there’s no licensing hoopla… I’d just bring an antenna for one band…probably 20… The DK9SQ mast is a little too big to schlep along…I’ll see how packing goes…