Talking of maplin. If anyone on this instance and in the UK wants any RP-crimp SMA plugs or sockets then let me know.

I’ll happily send a few (no charge!) to anyone who needs them. I think reverse polarity is generally used for WiFi gear. I have a bunch of each for RG174 and RG58.

I also have a load of other random connectors, just nothing particularly common, so if you’re looking for something odd then let me know and I’ll see what I have.

Yay! Sprat! Always an excellent read.

Definitely worth joining the G-QRP club if you aren’t already a member.

Got my Airspy HF+ Discovery!

Had to pay some fairly hefty import tax but this looks pretty nice.

Shame all the most user friendly and feature rich software is Windows only. I’d love SDR# for Linux or Mac.

Got a copy of the new English translation of Rothammel’s antenna book.

What a beast this is! It has more in it than I would have thought possible and nearly 1600 pages.

Finally got my Pi synced to the PPS pin on the GPS I plugged into it. It's currently indoors with a small ceramic antenna, but works.

Software is gpsd and chrony, hardware is a cheap ublox board with a hirose u.fl connector and a patch antenna, soon to be replaced with a chinese outdoor antenna.

The Pi is a model b, configured to use the standard UART (ttyS0) not the better one (ttyACM0), but that might need to change.

I think it'll be cool to add a little display with position/clock info.

Our stall at Westrally was busy! Manning it was good fun and stopped me buying too much junk.

Most interest was in G0VFS’ paddles but nobody bought them 💁🏼‍♂️

Had a lot of fun on the club’s fox hunt last night. It was my first, so I basically went to see how it worked. My team failed (mostly due to a lack of decent gear I reckon) but I will know what to do next time! First on the list is getting my tape measure antenna working.

Looking forward to it!

Been busy with other stuff recently so not done much radio/electronics but I made this BNC patch cable for @2w0kpf last night.

Pretty pleased with how it turned out.

Crimp connectors are great once you get the hang of them!

Spent a while yesterday receiving SSTV images on 20m (14.230 MHz), some pretty scary and really interesting.

I don't think anyone would deny that it's a pretty weird way to communicate, super fun though. Next I need to work out how to TX with qsstv (but first, family stuff)!

Just caught some of the SpaceX/NASA Dragon docking webcast. Totally mind blowing (albeit slow) action and a successful dock! In a couple of hours they should be able to open the door and go in.

Just my shiny new µArt ( to flash some custom firmware on a couple of cheap Sonoff wifi switches ( They now work with Alexa without some dodgy third party cloud service.

It's funny that the USB UART I used cost considerably more than the devices!

Didn’t manage to do everything I wanted to this weekend, but I did manage to build my £3 crystal tester, and this SOTABEAMS end fed tuner, plus wire it up ready for a test a tune on 40m.

I also managed to make up some test resistors to calibrate my cheap SARK 100 antenna analyser clone.

Actually I’m pretty happy with that list of stuff!🤔

Managed to record some of the ISS’s warblings using my phone’s voice recorder and decoded this. Not sure what it is to be honest. Next time I’ll be better prepared!

I’ve added some quick and dirty limit switches and a z-probe to my 2417 CNC, and also updated the GRBL version to the latest!

I’ve learned a lot about how it works and think I might almost be ready to use it in anger. Of course I still have a more beefy spindle to install and some new connectors to crimp...

Chopped the top off the dead transistor from my PSU. There’s nothing obviously burned in there but the left hand wire isn’t connected to the die. It’s pretty though!

Had a lot of fun climbing Toubkal in Morocco last week, but didn't take a as getting licensing sorted looked complicated and I was worried about customs (also I don't speak Arabic or French)!

The altitude made it hard work, but it was totally worth it.

Managed to repair my PSU by replacing the faulty pass transistor, and all the others for good measure.

Now added “research overvoltage protection circuits” to my never ending todo list! Looks like there are plenty of options.

Super happy the repair worked and there doesn’t seem to have been anything else wrong with it. 🙌

Dead transistor now identified!

Attached is how my cheapo component tester said it behaves now. Basically a short from collector to emitter, and that’s how I found it (meter on continuity mode, testing across disconnected transistors).

Tempted to replace all of them as they’re not too expensive.

My new favourite tool is this Engineer solder sucker. The tubing on the end makes a huge difference to the amount of suction you get.

Naturally, the writing on it is only the right way up when it’s in your right hand!

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