The last few weeks have seen some good progress on getting the new station built, the external cabinets have now been installed, these are Schneider Electric Spacial CRN cabinets and measure 600mm x 800mm x 300mm. From left to right they’ll be used for 240v Mains Electric, control equipment (more on this in a future posting) and RF Switching. These are great cabinets as they’re relativly inexpensive and are IP66 rated so provide good weather proofing for the equipment. My location is very exposed to the weather so this is an important consideration.
With CQWW SSB coming up I wanted to be able to get on 80m, so figured it was time to convert the DX Commander into an 80m capable antenna. The 17m element was removed and replaced with an 80m inverted L element, with hindsight I should probably have removed the 30m element but i’ll address this once I move the DX Commander to it’s permanent location. The end of the inverted L is supported from a Clansman 5.4m Mast i’ve had laying around for years. The 80m performance seems to be pretty good and will certainly do as a temporary solution for 80m.
Finally, and perhaps the most exciting change is the new HF rig, i’ve had my trusty Yaesu FT-2000 for a very long time and the opportunity came up for me to acquire a Kenwood TS-990S. The descision was a very easy one so the FT-2000 had to go. I’ve only had the TS-990S for a short time but so far i’m very pleased with it. The performance is considerably better than the FT-2000 and it’s a fantastic rig to operate. I’m very much looking forward to putting it through it’s paces in CQWW SSB.