Handiham Remote Base HF Stations

W0ZSW: Thunderstorm shutdowns begin for the 2018 season

by on Apr.14, 2018, under Uncategorized


April showers have returned to the USA Upper Midwest, and that means thunderstorm season is here.  Yesterday evening a spring storm pushed through southern and central Minnesota, and lightning accompanied rain, hail, snow, ice, and high winds.  In order to protect the station and computer network from lightning damage, the station was shut down and the antenna disconnected.  The station will return to service on Saturday, 14 April 2018 – but remember that shutdowns will happen throughout the remaining spring, summer, and fall thunderstorm season, depending on conditions.  W0EQO, located in far northern Minnesota, was not affected.

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W0ZSW and W0EQO are in service

by on Dec.23, 2017, under Uncategorized

Both stations are in service, but will experience intermittent outages for passing thunderstorms, system maintenance, or local activity.  W0EQO will periodically be offline when the station is being used on site by Boy Scout groups.

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Maintenance outage: W0ZSW & W0EQO

by on Jun.26, 2017, under Uncategorized

Following Field Day, the stations will be offline for routine maintenance.  W0EQO will be brought back on line periodically during the summer months.

An IC-7200 shown in the RCForb software.

An IC-7200 shown in the RCForb software.

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Tune Button on W0ZSW

by on Feb.26, 2017, under Uncategorized

The Tune button on the W0ZSW remote interface is now available to transmit privilege users.  It works through the Windows PC and Android apps, activating the LDG automatic antenna tuner to match the impedance of the 270 foot dipole fed with 450 ohm ladder line to the Icom IC-7200 transceiver.  When the tuning sequence is activated, you will not hear the receiver until the cycle completes.  At that point, the signals should be coming in even better, since the antenna is now tuned.  Often tuning the antenna will make the difference between hearing nothing on a given band and the band coming alive with many signals.  Always identify your transmissions.

Sometimes you will encounter a frequency where the LDG tuner has not already “memorized” the tuner settings.  When you toggle the tune button, it may then take 20 to 25 seconds to go through the whole tuning sequence as the LDG tuner tries one combination after another to get the best match.  During this time the receiver will be silent, but when it is complete you will once again hear audio.  Then you can identify and go ahead and operate.

Please email wa0tda@arrl.net to report any problems.  Have fun with the radio!

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W0ZSW back in service with new radio

by on Jan.17, 2017, under Uncategorized

Following a transmitter failure in the TS-480HX, W0ZSW was sidelined.  The station is now back on line with an Icom IC-7200, but we are waiting for a data cable to connect the radio to the LDG automatic antenna tuner.  We expect this to be available soon, but in the meantime it is necessary to provide some RF carrier to tune the antenna prior to transmitting phone or CW.  You must identify all transmissions.

Once the data cable is installed, the “Tune” button will work and take care of the antenna tuning process.

Stack of IC-7200s at Dayton one year.

Stack of IC-7200s at Dayton one year.

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by on Jan.13, 2017, under Uncategorized

Station W0ZSW is offline due to a transmitter failure.  Although the Kenwood TS-480HX receiver still works, the transmitter section is not functional, putting out no RF at all.  The radio will probably be replaced with a different one, but for now the station remains offline.  Station W0EQO remains in operation.

TS-480 close up.

TS-480 close up.

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W0ZSW returns to service

by on Jan.05, 2017, under Uncategorized

W0ZSW is back on line, but 160m is not tuning correctly and may not be available. Please send reports to wa0tda@arrl.net.

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W0EQO audio back after outage

by on Jan.04, 2017, under Uncategorized

Audio from W0EQO was down for around 8 hours between 3 January and the early morning of 4 January 2017.  A reboot of the RCForb host software has resolved the issue.  Please report any outages to wa0tda@arrl.net.

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W0ZSW offline for antenna check

by on Jan.03, 2017, under Uncategorized

The antenna at W0ZSW has stopped tuning properly.  There has been an ice storm followed by high winds in the Twin Cities, so we will have to check the antenna system for damage.  With subzero temperatures in the forecast, this work will be delayed.

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W0ZSW goes to 24 hour service

by on Dec.21, 2016, under Uncategorized

W0ZSW has a 24/7 schedule now, replacing the old daytime-only schedule.  Please be respectful of all other users by returning controls like RF Gain and Split to their normal positions before you log off.  Also, please use the lowest power level needed for all transmissions to avoid interference to other electronic equipment at the station location.  If interference remains minimal, we can keep the station in operation full-time.

TS-480 close up.

TS-480 close up.

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