Category Archives: Amateur Radio

Astatic D-104 Lollipop Mic Restoration

Astatic D-104 MicEarlier this year (2016) I was on the radio on SSB, and I received an audio report during a longer conversation that described my audio as nasally and difficult to listen to. I did some research on the Astatic D-104, and there was a modification that was supposed to change the characteristics of the mic. I attempted this mod by following a step-by-step PDF which involved using a JFET, but for some strange reason it didn’t work well with my radio. It didn’t have enough audio output to push the finals of my radio! Time to put it back to how it was… The problem is that I don’t remember, and I didn’t document it before tearing it apart the first time. Continue reading Astatic D-104 Lollipop Mic Restoration

Raspberry PI File Server: Backup Ham Radio Data

Prepare for Disaster

It happened once before when I was KK4FGM. I had a logbook on a computer that died, and I lost my entire logbook. It was never uploaded to LOTW, QRZ, eQSL, or anywhere, so I lost all credit for any awards or recollection! Since getting back into HF in December 2015, I have made 100% sure that I have duplicate copies of my logs and other important data on a separate device. Continue reading Raspberry PI File Server: Backup Ham Radio Data

Inverted Vee 40m Dipole and Mast

My Purpose

Antennas in the back yardIt has been a long time since I have experimented with antennas and yard ornaments (tall, antenna holding things like towers and masts), but recently I have been annoyed by the performance of my Hustler 5BTV vertical. I have vertically polarized noise that tends to aggravate me, so I wanted to try an inverted vee dipole to see if conditions improve.

Lately, I have been working CW, and I have had some fading signals and noise, so I figured that the dipole might help some with this. The issue is that I needed somewhere to mount this thing! Continue reading Inverted Vee 40m Dipole and Mast

10 Meter Mobile

HTX-100 on the Jeep's dashI realized on October 12, 2013 that it had been eleven months since I had last made an HF contact of my own. I made some during Field Day 2013, but those weren’t really mine. There were several reasons why I couldn’t get on the air. I had lots of receive noise, little time, and an uncomfortable ham shack. I believe that I have solved these problems. Continue reading 10 Meter Mobile


xastir_screenshot_10_9I’ve mentioned Xastir many times before, and it seems to be better and better every time I use it. My original issue was that my KAM TNC would not recognize much of the information that was passed to it. The developers added a delay that accommodates my slower TNC.

The other day I noticed that I could not send any messages through Xastir. I contacted one of the developers, but right off hand he didn’t have an answer. I continued to poke through the settings, and I finally found the setting that fixed this issue. I went to “File -> Configure -> Timing”. The setting that I changed was “Serial Inter-Char Delay (ms)”. I changed it from 1 to 30, and now messages go through as they should without my TNC hiccuping. Be sure that when you find something that works that you “Save Config Now!”.