The International Short Wave League   January 31st, 2014

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Every so often a journal lands on my desk from the International Short Wave League. It is a low cost printed A5 journal but, nevertheless, very interesting to reads. The League was formed in 1946 which means it is only a couple of years short of its 70th birthday. Although it is international, its roots are in the UK.

It is a good example of a membership that has been born out of a common interest, but with a simple membership structure and officer structure. The League’s logo has not changed in years, and I first came across it in my school days.

I am sure that running a league like this requires hours of voluntary work and I am sure the Leagge would like to see numbers grow. I would recommend that you visit their website and perhaps consider joining. It strikes me as a group enthusiastic hams who are working together to preserve one of the oldest ham radio groups in the UK. By the way, I get no financial benefit from this post, I just thought I would mention them in view of their history and age. ! Peter G3OJV

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10m is Calling You   January 31st, 2014

We are probably just past the second hump in the current sunspot cycle, which means that in the medium term we can look forward to a gradual fall off in HF band conditions. However, for the next three months, things look like being pretty good with 10m promising to be open regularly for DX during the daylight hours. So if you have not experienced the fun on 10m, check it regularly. That does not mean once a day. Often 10m will open up just for a few hours. Check one of the many beacon lists and then put a few geographic locations into your transceiver memory so that you can keep an ear open for propagation. It’s a great band to call CQ on. After all, if nobody calls CQ yet the beacons are there, a casual listener might determine that the band is dead.

!0m was one of my favourite bands in the 1960s, helped by a remarkable sunspot cycle at the beginning of that decade. At the time, equipment was in the main either war surplus or home built. Either way, the equipment was working at its upper limit where performance always dropped off. Today we don;t have that problem and receivers are very sensitive. Even a modest antenna system can provide excellent results and there is no reason why with a 100W and a dipole at say at 20ft, you should not work around the world when the band is open. You have until April to make best use f whatever 10m has to throw up. Good luck. Peter G3OJV.

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FT-DX3000 2

We are offering a massive £167 cashback on the exciting FT-DX3000D. This is one of Yaesu’s greatest ever transceivers. And this surely is the time to buy. But don’t leave it too late!

And if you are really clever, you can combine this with a part exchange deal. The time has never been better to buy the Yaesu FT-DX3000D! The quickest way to get your new FT-DX3000 is to click onto our web shop. Pay the price shown and then send a copy of your receipt to Yaesu UK and you will get a cheque back from them for £167.00. It’s that simple.

But we can only hold this offer open until 31st March. Don’t miss out. Peter G3OJV

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FT-897D Joins The CashBack Deal   January 31st, 2014

FT-897

We can announce that the Yaesu CashBack has been extended to the FT-897D transceiver. This gives you a great deal on this already excellent value transceiver.

And if you are really clever, you can combine this with a part exchange deal. The time has never been better to buy the Yaesu FT-897D! The quickest way to get your new FT-897D is to click onto our web shop. Pay the price shown and then send a copy of your receipt to Yaesu UK and you will get a cheque back from them for £42.00. It’s that simple.

But we can only hold this offer open until 31st March. Don’t miss out. Peter G3OJV

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FT-1200-lo-rez2

We can announce that we are extending the Yaesu CashBack on the FT-DX1200 transceiver. But the even better news is that the net price has been reduced to an even lower level. You can now land yourself a brand new FT-DX1200 for £1266 (which includes the Yaesu £83 CashBack. That’s our lowest price ever!

And if you are really clever, you can combine this with a part exchange deal. The time has never been better to buy the Yaesu FT-DX1200! The quickest way to get your new FT-DX1200 is to click onto our web shop. Pay the price shown and then send a copy of your receipt to Yaesu UK and you will get a cheque back from them for £83.00. It’s that simple.

But we can only hold this offer open until 31st March. Don’t miss out. Peter G3OJV

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Cracking The Code   January 28th, 2014

I happened to be looking around the ARRL web site and stumbled across their CW code schedules. What I had not realised was that they publish their CW code transmissions as MP3 audio files and as text files. The speeds vary from 5wpm to 40wpm. This is a great source of practice with the text sent also being available for checking. I struggled with 30wpm and there was no way I could cope with 40wpm.

This set me wondering whether these high speeds were ever achieved with straight keys? I find it hard to believe this was possible. Perhaps high speed CW has only been possible with the advent of electronic keyers? Actually, i do remember purchasing an Eddystone mechanical automatic keyer back in the 1960s, but I don’t think keying speeds of 40wpm were possible! Peter G3OJV

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Keep Up With The Tablets   January 27th, 2014

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Last week I had a phone call from an owner of a K3 transceiver who said the transmitter,a K3, had stopped working. Fortunately the K3 has some very helpful error messages that are explained in the user manual. However, when things stop working the first thought for many is that the radio has developed a fault.

In this particular case I was fairly sure that I knew what the problem might be, but I needed to check through the manual. As I am first in line for many of the Elecraft phone calls I carry an iPad with me and all the manuals are available to me under iBooks, an Apple application. Apart from avoiding masses of paper, iBooks allows me to do a word search and so get the information up very quickly.

My checks all pointed to the fact that the transmit problem was the result of an incorrectly set menu item. This seemed very likely as the owner of the radio had recently installed an accessory that had to be switched on in the menu system. So armed with my iPad and a K3 in front of me, it was very easy to talk the customer through the menu settings. And sure enough I was right. In the K3 it is essential to select a filter and bandwidth for the transmitter. In this instance the transmitter filter choice had been switched off and so the error message appeared and the transmit light was flashing. Correcting this setting cured the problem and the owner was back on the air within 15 minutes of the phone call. Information technology certainly helped here. Peter G3OJV

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Tokyo Hy-Power Pull The Plug!   January 25th, 2014

It was announced at Christmas that Tokyo Hy-Power have filed for Bankruptcy. This is something of a surprise, as they were exhibiting in Dayton and other ham shows in the USA. They were also working on new models. However, they were operating at the upper end of the market and their products were mainly being sold in the domestic market for various reasons. This is somewhat limiting of course. But a sad loss. Peter G3OJV

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Elecraft KXPA-100 Arrives   January 25th, 2014

KXPA-100

The first batch of the new Elecraft KXPA-100 amplifiers have arrived and been despatched to the first customers in the queue. That was not enough to meet all the orders. We are hoping to receive another batch towards the end of next week. If you are looking to buy one, then please check with our sales team here at Hockley.

What we did not realise is that the interconnecting leads for the KX3 are an optional extra. This is because some customers will be buying the amplifier for use with the FT-817. We are also receiving the matching auto ATU, for those who want this option. From early reports we are getting from the USA, most customers are wanting the ATU as well as the amplifier. For anybody wanting to have a closer look at the amplifier, we have a sample here at Hockley. Peter G3OJV

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OM-Power 2000+ Amplifier Arriving   January 25th, 2014

OM-Power-2000+

We are expecting delivery of the very latest OM-Power 2000+ linear amplifier early next week – possibly Monday. This is capable of delivering 2kW output on 160m to 10m bands and up to 1,5kW on 6m. Like all the OM-Power amplifiers, this one is really hunky, and should last for years. If you are interested, then please call our Sales guys to get the price and delivery information. Peter G3OJV.

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