JT65 Time Accuracy

I see this from time to time and have experienced it as well. The PC clock does not keep accurate enough time for JT65. Transmissions start precisely every 30 seconds starting from the top of the minute. If your clock is off by as much as a fraction of a second you will make your transmission undecodable and you’ll never be able to decode others either. It will seem that JT65 does not work. Get Dimension 4 and run it on your PC. I have it synchronizing the time every 15 seconds to ensure accuracy.

Here’s an example of what I’m talking about. The signal at -1K is timed correctly. The signal at about -10 started about a second too early and will not be decoded. This person sent the call over and over again to no avail since no one could ‘hear’ him. If you can’t decode any signals - check your clock - it is probably off.


CQWW DX SSB 2011 Contest

My little ham station got a needed workout this weekend! I used the IC-718, the GAP Eagle DX and my new W8AMZ G5RV Jr . antenna that replaced my aging MFJ G5RV Jr. Also my new MFJ-949E tuner did a great job! I worked 40, 20, 15 and 10 meters with no problems and got a bunch of great DX. France, Russia, Netherlands, Australia and Germany just off the top of my head. I didn’t call any CQ’s just answered CQ’s from other stations and my pace was casual. Ended up working just over 12 hours and had 58 contacts with a total claimed score of about 9000. I wasn’t feeling too fatigued and took a couple of naps. Overall it was very fun. 10 meters was very open!!

Of course I used N3FJP’s excellent contest logging software!

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California QSO Party 2011

I wasn’t very aggressive this contest and ended up with only 24 contacts, but it was fun and relaxing. I only worked 20 meters SSB and the band sounded pretty good. As usual, I did not call CQ but just went up and down the band answering all CA stations heard. I used the GAP Eagle DX for the entire contest. I used N3FJP’s excellent logging software.

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2000th QSO Logged Today!

Today I passed the 2000 QSO count since moving to Texas in 1985.

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Rosewill RGD-CT505 Alkaline NIMH Charger

Recently I bought one of these little gems from Newegg.com for about $25.00. It does a really good job charging NIMH. It can also recharge an Alkaline battery so that it can be used about 10 more times. It works very well as advertised.

My old charger was starting to reject most of my batteries and refused to charge them. This new charger determined that one of my batteries was bad and I disposed of it.

I don’t have to charge batteries in pairs - the charger has 4 independent charge channels which makes it easy to determine the state of an individual battery.



Washington State Salmon Run

Today (9/17/2011) is the annual Washington State Salmon Run QSO contest! This is a very fun contest and the certificates they send out are some of the best! If you haven’t gotten involved before, jump in - you’ll have fun. Happy I’ve participated several years now and have enjoyed it every time.

Here’s the link to the club’s site:

For logging software I use N3FJP’s contest software from

Just do it!

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Yippeee!!! Happy Radio is Back!!!

I am so glad to have my IC-718 back from HamRepair.com!! It is working great! Turned out to be the driver transistors were shorted somehow. Radio is now in great shape at a reasonable price. Just in time for the MIQP.



Disaster - kaboom!

Last night I was listening to my IC-718 and all of a sudden I heard a relay clicking sound. The display was flashing and the radio was drawing 25 AMPS from the power supply. The radio chassis was very hot to the touch.

I have sent it to HamRepair.com for repair. Hopefully it is not too serious. I know that Cal will do a good job on it. When he fixed my FT-817nd a few years ago it came back better than new.