Elk hunting and AS-1743 AAR

Started by Quietus, October 21, 2012, 09:03:04 pm

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Quietus

October 21, 2012, 09:03:04 pm Last Edit: October 21, 2012, 09:07:38 pm by Quietus
I got invited to help on an elk hunt with son and oldest grandson.  Most of my radio time is done when camping, so I got with KC9TNH (member here) and we set up a time and frequency schedule via email the day prior.
 
Back in August, I got an AS-1743 off of eBay.  It is a US military multiband dipole, useable from 2mHz to 30mHz.  Its wire is stored on two flat reels, like extension cord ladders only shorter at one foot length.  The wires have strain relief built in, a wire hook into the antenna head.  Wires have yellow and black sleeves on them, calibrated in mHz.  It's possible to put out the correct amount of wire in the dark, by counting these sleeves as the wire gets put out.
 
The reels have launching cord and a sinker built in to them, I think about fifty feet of heavy line and a streamlined sinker weight for throwing up in a tree, then raising up and tensioning the reel and whatever line remains on it.
 
The dipole head is pretty basic, two studs with wingnuts, plus strain relief heads for the radiators and the feedline.  The feedline that comes with the kit, is RG-58, ten meters of it.  I've been using camo net poles, 4' fiberglass ones, with a modified spreader hub nut to attach the dipole head and wires, and perpindicular guylines for stabilizers. 
 
My use of this antenna has mostly been for 75m and 40m NVIS use when camping, so I'm using four pole sections which when sleeved, bring mast height to 15'.  On 40m, the reels can be fine-tuned to get 1:1 SWRs throughout the band without a tuner.  On 75m, you can get 1:1 tunerless on part of the voice band and 1.5:1 on the remainder, your choice on high or low on the voice portion, just adjust the reels one wrap.  I generally run this as an inverted V with stays keeping the wire ends between two and three feet above ground.  I've seen that raising the radiator ends half a foot will lower SWR.
 
The guy ropes used to keep the mast up, can be replaced with wire.  So if you want your main wire reeled to 75m band, you can stabilize it by cutting your guy wire to 40m, and have the best of tunerless NVIS.  Some people have made this short mast concept into a tri-band, running 75 and 40m on one axis, and stabilizing with a 60m wire.  All wires hook to the same two studs, it's an easy rig.
 
Yesterday's schedule was for a station 800 miles away in daylight.  Previous practice with that antenna wouldn't get there, so I used the launching cord and lead weights to get up in trees, something to match the mast height.  Reels were cut for 14.343mHz on SWR reading, without tuner.  Three throwing tries into the trees got two wires elevated and tensioned with just a bit of sag due to all the wire that remained on the reels (only about 16' was out on each.)  So the radiator ends were about half a foot below mast height.
 
The scheduled contact happened, not on the specified freq, but it happened following the protocol for up/down on time, if the scheduled freq(s) were busy.  I was able to do voice at 35w with a good signal.  Running an IC-7200 battery killer, that antenna treated me good and allowed tunerless use and use of reduced power.
 
I took some phone pics but don't know how to post them.  KC9TNH will post some.  One shows a reel against the sky and its short wire compared to a short (but effective) field mast.
 
BTW:  Son got elk while I was messing with radio.  Today we packed 180 or so pounds of quartered cow elk out about two miles to a road.  His family will have good eating this winter.

gil

That sounds like my ideal vacation!
Gil.

RadioRay

Oh Man!  This brings back some memories of elk camp in Idaho and Colorado.  HF in the high country is always a plus - and a good just-in-case piece of gear. 

QQQ: How are you recharging the battery for the 7200 - vehicles?



de RadioRay ..._ ._
"When we cannot do the good we would, we must be ready to do the good we can."  ~ Matthew Henry

Quietus

At home I use a 2/4/6 amp charger plugged into the wall.  For field use I'm using an inverter plugged into the accessory socket and the same charger.  I put the battery on the passenger floorboard with charger hooked up, then plug in the inverter while driving to campsite.
 
Haven't gotten into solar panels, I do believe that one is necessary to keep this thing going for long, and it will need to be fairly expensive due to the radio's draw (22 amps @ 100w transmit, and ca. 1 amp/hour listening on speaker.)

KC9TNH

Quote from: Quietus on October 21, 2012, 09:03:04 pmThe scheduled contact happened, not on the specified freq, but it happened following the protocol for up/down on time, if the scheduled freq(s) were busy.  I was able to do voice at 35w with a good signal.  Running an IC-7200 battery killer, that antenna treated me good and allowed tunerless use and use of reduced power.
 
I took some phone pics but don't know how to post them.  KC9TNH will post some.  One shows a reel against the sky and its short wire compared to a short (but effective) field mast.
 
BTW:  Son got elk while I was messing with radio.  Today we packed 180 or so pounds of quartered cow elk out about two miles to a road.  His family will have good eating this winter.
Was a good contact, easy copy as they say. For me (maybe based on background) the important part is the first number of a signal report, and I'm pretty friendly that way. "All meters are e-kval; some are more e-kval den ze uhzers." So I don't care if you're pounding me - if we can exchange information without repeats, you get a 5. So a good job done, and a pleasant chat. (And jealous 'cause someone's gonna be eatin' good for awhile.)

3 pics vs. the 2 I'd thought of.
The elk-camp shack at the station equipment end, with perimeter alarm system standing by.
Also, shortened leg Quietus speaks of against the dim mountain light.
And finally, for those still salivating (but who didn't have to do the work), Wapiti au Travois.  8)