Sunday, 23 October 2016

G-QRP Club Rishworth Convention

Today was the G-QRP club convention, an event which ive looked forward to all year, and that sadly has come to an end, this being the last one. For this, I managed to assign myself a healthy budget, far more than I can normally have for a rally, and set off very early, intending to make a good day of it. I even lugged a ton of PRC-349 batteries there with me to go on the bring and buy stall!

And what a great day it was! Three thoroughly enjoyable talks, cheap cups of tea and biscuits, a fun Buildathon, and lots of interesting junk!

Buildathon kit provided by QRPme

The Buildathon project was a novel no-solder RF probe kit. Over 100 of these were constructed, mine taking me around 2mins. W1REX of QRPme was the provider of these, and of the very enjoyable talk that went with them! Its actually such a nice little kit, and practical too, that im going to remove the SIL sockets and make mine up permanently. Ive got a couple of small analogue multimeters on order, I might sacrifice the available ranges on one to build the RF probe kit in with it!

I only managed to find one of the capacitors I require for the Pye PF8, the 18pF, and I found it in a £1 bag of random parts! Once home, it took me the best part of two hours to sort the bag out and pack all the bits away!

Some of the contents of a £1 goody bag
 My main purchase though was, as intended, the Ultimate 3S kit from QRP Labs. I opted for the additional GPS kit and an extra Low Pass Filter kit. Once complete I will have the option of 40m or 10m operation. I also got the extra BS170 MOSFETs to ramp the output power up a little.

I have already completed construction of the Si5351A Synthesiser module.

Si5351A Synth module from QRP Labs
I also paid up my G-QRP club subs whilst there, and picked up a few non-electronic items, a copy of the ARRL Handbook for Bob, so he might finally stop nagging me about things and leave us free to discuss VHF rhombics more, an old IBA engineers pocket book for 20p, and another mechanical calculator disk for my collection. I also somehow missed Mike Walker who visited but briefly. And, sadly, I also came away with all the batteries I had taken!

Ive made a start then on testing the remaining batteries. Ive taken one of the spare PRC-349 cases to make a battery charging dock for use with the Accucel-8. Perhaps if I do test them and find only the ones that hold a decent charge, i'll manage to sell a few! Ive also made a start baring back the cores of the damaged audio extension cable to repair it, this will be no easy job, as the damn wire is Litz! some very fine wire winding work might be needed.

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