Megan (jehoshabeath) wrote,
Megan
jehoshabeath

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Ants in the antennas, Rigs in the room

Ant bites itch.
Even after two days.

I spent Saturday helping to organize the last of the Field Day equipment. It had been sitting outside under a tarp and a nation of ants had taken up residence in one of the bags of fiberglass poles - the ones we used for our antenna masts. We exposed them to the hot sun, and within an hour or two, they had mostly scurried off, taking their young with them. We then brushed the stragglers away with a brush. Well, I should say that Tom brushed them off. I stood back ewwwing at the bugs. Later I performed QA on each of the poles as we counted, sorted, and bagged them. We had to sift out and dispose of all the poles that had been damaged during the windstorm Saturday night on Field Day that tore down two of our masts. (That was the storm where we were standing in the food tent and holding it from blowing away...) The rest of the poles were then transported to the storage center. Our faithful Field Day leader was there to help and even hydrate us with Snapple! The people from this club are so great :)

After we got all that taken care of, Tom pulled together a bunch of equipment and we assembled an EmComm station here in my apartment! I've got a roll-up J-Pole antenna that is happy to hang from the blinds when they are pulled up to the top of the window. The signal comes from a handheld radio that runs on an amplifier, both of which have back-up battery support thanks to a big heavy battery on the floor. Under normal conditions, they run off a power supply, which also maintains the charge on the battery. Using the rig, I was able to make my first leisurely VHF contact (thanks to KB3CS!) and check into my first net on Sunday evening. It was really exciting. I doubled over someone during check-in, but we got it sorted out (thanks to net control, K3CSX). I am looking forward to chatting with everyone on the repeater soon and helping out with some SkyWarn nets if hail happens to start falling. Many thanks again to Tom for lending me the equipment and getting me on the air :)

Unfortunately, somehow work became very busy all of a sudden and I am lagging behind. I am also exhausted after having worked a lot this weekend and staying up late doing laundry Sunday night/morning. And tangles in the crawling algorithm of our program have my head spinning.

In other good news, though, my FT-817ND has arrived safe and sound at its destination and will be set up soon. I am very excited! I can't wait to see it and am looking forward to setting it up. Wonder if Bill will give me a CW test while he is over, heehee. I better not give him ideas...

For now - sleep. I need to catch up on what I missed last night. 5 hours was just not enough.
Tags: emcomm, nature, radio equipment, work
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