Contest Preparations

Posted By: W3DIO

Another contest looming near.  This past weekend we did a few things to prepare for the upcoming contest.  We went through all our transverters(222,903,2304,3456) and documented the current calibration on them.  Then we opened up the 3456 transverter on the table as it was the one furtherest off frequency and adjusted it to bring it closer into calibration.  We accomplished this by taking advantage of a harmonic of 432 Mhz.  The 8th harmonic of 432 is 3456 thus if you generate a signal on 432.0125 you should be able to hear it on 3456.1.   The transverter actually found this signal at 3456.085.20.  We adjusted it and brought it closer to 3456.1.  Unfortunately with temperature changes and such the frequency varies pretty much especially the first few minutes of the transverter being turned on.  The end result is we shouldn’t have to search far from signals on 3456 unlike previous contests.

We also did our monthly engine and generator test.  Both started although the battery was a little low so we will probably want to make sure that is charged up fully before the contest.  Fortunately in the RV we can always start the RV on the house batteries if we need to.

Next weekend we will be taking the RV to fill up the propane tank and we will be inspecting the mast to ensure all the parts are still in good working order.  We also need to reinstall the 3456 transverter back in the equipment closet.

BTW, whoever came up with the idea of using RCA plugs for 12 volt power adapters should be taken out back and shot.  Ended up blowing a fuse while disconnecting the transverter due to shorting the connector out.  A pain in the arse to be sure.  I’m very tempted to modify the DEMI transverter to replace it with a powerpole pigtail.

Unfortunately we still haven’t had time to integrate the 240watt 903 amp, nor either of the 3456 toshiba amps we bought.  We also have a brand new 2304 DEMI transverter and 60 watt amp board to integrate to replace the SSB electronics transverter and amp board we have presently.  We have just been tied up.  Hopefully we will get some of these projects worked on before the September contest.

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