QRP with Jefferson Davis


The subject is a little misleading but the QRP part is what this trip was all about. As advertised in the last story we were off and running to Fairview, KY to visit the Jefferson Davis Monument for a little QRP fun.

(http://parks.ky.gov/findparks/histparks/jd/ ) That should give you some idea of where we went and show you a few of the highlights of the area. We planed to meet at one of the local fast food joints along Fort Campbell blvd. at around 9 am. The plan was to fortify ourselves with a little fast food then caravan over to Fairview KY. The weather was working in our favor and it was looking good with just a little cold crisp air in the forecast.  (Turned out to be 28 degrees, almost a heat wave)  The gang KF4WK-Lewis, NV4T-Doc, N5HOT-Terry,

 AA4AE-Frank, myself KM6NN-John and a want to be Flying Pig WE8C-Jim arrived at the Jefferson Davis Monument and started by looking for a good operating location. In no time flat we had the area scoped out and were throwing up a line to set up the Mystery Antenna (W5GI.com) into the trees. The cold held me back a little as the line was cold and did not want to cooperate with my sure shot aim up into the trees. On this trip N5HOT-Terry brought his brand new K3 for a little field work. While he set up his radio and battery on the operating bench, AA4AE-Frank, WE8C-Jim, NV4T-Doc and I set about putting up the antenna and getting out the paperwork to document the momentous event.

 As is the tradition with our club NV4T-Doc was going to make the first contact to set the tune of the operation. We found a strong signal on 40 meters and away we went calling KC4FCN-Bruce in Yatesville, GA. There was no joy but Bruce was coming in like gang busters. So Doc went hunting and found another station that sounded stronger than Bruce. KI4XH-John in Woodbridge VA was banging away with a strong signal. Doc gave him a call after waiting for his QSO to end but it was just not happening.  Doc was getting a little frustrated. He called and called and in the cold it was no easy chore. Still no joy was coming out of the K3. Doc lifted his hands and said he was too cold to send anymore and needed a brake. I sat down at the radio and tuned to 20 meters as all the QSO's on 40 were rag chews. I found a strong signal and put out a call. Yep you guessed it no joy.

Now not being a K3 owner and just a user I have found that sometimes a button will get pushed that should not have and without further adieu I will tell you right off the bat. When Terry set up the rig he tuned up the antenna and so as not to put out any spurious radio emissions he TURNED OFF THE VOX. Yep so now that the VOX was on and the radio was actually putting out 5 watts I set about trying to get someone to come back to me. LOL What a deal. You never know when something like that will happen so keep your eyes and ears open when operating in the field. Not hearing anything on 20 meters I went back to 40 where the band seemed to be a bit more open.

Right off the bat I heard WB4AQL-Mike in Chickamauga, GA. Mike and I had a great QSO about the Flying Pigs QRP club and our operating location in Fairview, KY.

From 1713Z to 1727Z we passed information back and forth about all the things radio operators should pass. Nice QSO for a frosty 28 degree outing. At least I was keeping warm moving around on the key. LOL  I listened to a couple of operators in a QSO for a bit then rolled off to find another QSO. Now the Doc was warmed up enough to get back on the radio so I turned the K3 over to him. In no time he called N8ER-Gene in Parsons, WV. Doc got a 599 report and was pleased to make a contact. That one was enough for the Doc as the cold was getting to him so I took over again and checked out another call that was on the same frequency as Gene. K3GY-Don from Erie, PA. was coming in at 559 but was solid copy. After a short exchange my signal faded out and Don reported that he was having trouble copying me. So with 72 in my transmission and cold on my hand we said goodbye to Don and shut down our station with high expectation of a warmer location on our minds.

72 for now and we hope to catch you on the air.


We have a slow speed net on 7120 at 1400 Z most every morning except Sunday. Give us a shout 72

John, KM6NN and the Flying Pig Gang   ditdit