Two stretched coat hangers, one Nivea cream box, an electrical block, a coax choke wound to the PVC pipe with duck tape: a rotatable horizontal-polarization centre-fed half-wave dipole for the 70 MHz band. Nice QSOs with EA5IYK Mark, EA5IZX Carsten and EA5IZO Richard, in a range of 8 to 40 km from me. It happens to be quite directional. When working EA5IYK, (about 40 km), having my dipole off by 60° reduced my signal by about two S-meter points.

Doing licence-free "amateur radio" with sets without breaking any of the EU-wide rules for the band may involve physical exercise, style: since one can only do simplex, with the built-in antenna, 500 mW, and HT in hand, one has to walk up to high places. That does not exclude interesting contacts and even DX when tropospheric propagation kicks in.

Last Saturday I climbed (again) to foggy Serra Mitjana (EA5/AT-099) but this time I convinced friends to try a activation; I brought my Cobra Microtalk MT-600. I made 15 contacts, of which 4 qualified as "legal" PMR446 to-PMR446 contacts. Blog post

Chinese transceivers have a very basic 3-pole filter and are known to produce strong (non-conformant) harmonics in TX. But wouldn't using a resonant antenna further attenuate at least the even harmonics?

I started a blog and published a post describing my experience, just in case it is helpful to other fellow hams:

The 47 kΩ BFO potentiometer in one of my Pixies was broken. Having no replacement, I installed two resistors (22 kΩ and 33 kΩ). Now RX is 7023.68 kHz, 540 Hz above TX, 7023.14 kHz. A tone of 540 Hz when a station zero-beats me (chirp allowing) is a bit 'bass' but should work.

It kind of worked! Ops were very kind to me: thanks

It was hard to pick up their signal and my keying was awful. My antenna connection was flaky, and I broke my Chinese key at ~09:40Z. Nice flat summit for my dipole! I also broke my glasses, but that's not a radio-related accident ;-)

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Decided. I'll hike this morning to EA5/AT-099 Serra Mitjana with a 7023.2-kHz 0.3-W Pixie and a CFHW inverted-V dipole. I'll be there around ~0900Z, QRPp and QRSs. Receiving with a DSB receiver will be tricky, as I'll also hear OMs in other nearby frequencies. I'll spot myself at SOTAWatch.

This is what happens when you erect a "temporary" dipole with the first rope you find (don't look at the"knot"). Ten months later, the rope, burned by the sun and bruised by the winds, is about to snap. I may be off the waves while I replace it. I am not happy to have to climb...

Oh, and I brought a new straight key, one miniature key I bought in AliExpress. Much better than logging my good-old MFJ-550 on a piece of wood.

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Today I activated peak EA5/AT-071 "Manzorrilla" for the 1st time. It seemed a leisurely climb, 1 km away from a main road, 161 m ascent. Ha! No path! Rocks, pines and bushes. Could stay only 1 hour → 18 QSOs (FM, SSB and some CW): Xiegu G90, DX-HF-20 whip+counterpoise. As to , I was very, very clumsy managing the mini pile-up in 14065 kHz. I apologize if I couldn't work all who called. All very nice and QRS for the newbie CW-er!! VY 73 ES TNX!

This morning I activated peak EA5/AT-099 "Serra Mitjana" for the first time. It was also my first time doing some from , very QRSs and with a rather bulky MFJ-550 straight key and a whip antenna. My contacts were very nice in slowing down for me!

I've had a conversation on the reflectors from my phone, but I'm wondering if anyone out here has managed to pass this kind of traffic over the air yet. #hamradio

Broke the SMA connector in my . While connector arrives, temporary setup (photo). Recalibrated. Known SWR readings are now higher. My dipole used to have a nice 1.2:1 minimum around 14 MHz, now 2.4:1. Does anyone have an explanation?


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