CQ CQ CQ #HamRadio Saturday – nets, cards and another field day

ham radio badassNow for another edition of Ham Radio Saturday.

I created a page for the List of YOUR callsigns.  HERE  Chime in or drop me a note if your call doesn’t appear in the list.

I checked into a local ARES net for the first time this week, using my little Baofeng UV-5R. I listened and got the gist of their MO. There is a controller, who directs traffic as it were, and a standard format they follow. When it seemed right, I checked in. People were cordial and courteous. I have found that to be true with most hams.

The MO of the net was interesting to me, in that a few of us here have tossed around the notion of creating a Catholic Net. It would be nice to see some of you hams pipe up about this.

I made a few QSOs this week and I sent some cards. I have visual confirmation that they were received by KD8ZFF and WB0YLE. We had a few minutes together, even though the conditions were pretty bad.



That’s me in the lower corner.

However, I have moved to change my call.  We shall see.

I am continuing to work on my Morse Code.

Last Sunday a local elmer and I set up a big loop antena on the hill behind the church by the cemetery.


Each end is a couple dozens of feet long.




It would have been better to raise it much higher, but this was done on the spur of the moment.



As the sun set over the cemetery.  I do love those arbor vitae.  They remind me of cypresses.


And, just because, I had an encounter with a chicken.  No, not an anonymous Fishwrap combox contributor.


I was picking up something else and learned that there were also available freshly laid eggs.  I acquired a dozen. Some hens lay white eggs and some brown.


To bring this post full circle, I had eggs with ham for breakfast.

Now for your ham news.

(Which may be the last time I post with that call!  Fingers crossed.)


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Ham Radio, What Fr. Z is up to. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Cantor says:

    White and brown? Didn’t you know it’s supposed to be Green Eggs and ham?

  2. xsosdid says:

    I am more and more intrigued with this. I hope you keep posting on it. I have started shopping for a radio, but I haven’t yet run it by Mrs xsosdid.

  3. Fr. Bryan says:

    One the new call comes through, we will have to exchange cards again. Glad to see mine in WB0YLE’s photo as well. The loop antenna should serve very well. It doesn’t have to be too high’ as it need the ground for ground propagation of the RF. I’m not an expert, so maybe WB0YLE can chime on that. I wish I had room for a full wavelength loop antenna for 80 meters. Not enough room at the parish. But I am thinking of changing my 40 meter single center fed wire to a center-fed fan dipole for 40, 20, and 12 meters, although I can get to every band 40 and above with my auto-tuner, so I really shouldn’t need it except for the sake of better efficiency. Looking forward to trying on the air again to hold a Foxtrot Romeo Zed Catholic net, which I think would be very beneficial. 73 de KD8ZFF

  4. The Masked Chicken says:

    “And, just because, I had an encounter with a chicken. No, not an anonymous Fishwrap combox contributor.”

    I have never contributed to the National Catholic Reporter…

    The Chicken

  5. Elizabeth D says:

    Really Fr Z, why would you slander your most valuable commenter?! :-)

  6. Chicken… ehem… yes… forgot about you. But you have been uncharacteristically quiet of late.

  7. oldconvert says:

    Now Father, I hope you intend to do some serious research into chicken wrangling, if you are not already familiar with poultry. Chickens are not low-maintenance pets, they need good quality food, including some green grass or clover, plenty of fresh clean water (a laying hen will drink a half-pint day, no problem), regular cleaning of the nesting box and roosting area, checking and treating for mites, lice, worms, protection against predators, checking for signs of disease and pain. They also go off-lay periodically as part of their natural lives. And the odd one or two will become broody occasionally. You seem to be away from base a lot, I hope you have in place arrangements for deputy carers. People say they are dumb birds, but I have found them surprisingly intelligent, they soon get to know who are their friends (i.e. the ones who bring food) and what are the likeliest routes out of their run.

    [Thanks for that. However, the only chicken I have posted a comment already.]

  8. The Masked Chicken says:

    You know when St. Paul said that when one person sins, the whole Church suffers, well, the recent mess in the Church is taking much out of me. Better to be silent.

    The Chicken

  9. VexillaRegis says:

    Dear Masked Chicken,

    I feel the same way.

  10. The Masked Chicken says:

    Sorry, sorry, sorry… When I wrote:

    “I have never contributed to the National Catholic Reporter…,”

    I meant to put a smiley face after it. I was not upset in the least and I did not take Fr. Z’s chicken remark to be about me. I meant to have some fun with it, but forgot the fun (the smiley face). I had hoped the ellipsis would have been a dead give-away that I was not serious, but after I sent off the message, I thought I should have put in the smiley face. I was running for a bus, so I couldn’t log back in to add it. Here it is:


    Fr. Z did not slander me. I assume there are many anonymous chickens making comments in comboxes (the Slashdot site calls the, “Anonymous Cowards’) on many different sites. I, however, am the only chicken who wears a mask, sort of a Zorooster…

    I haven’t been commenting because, for one reason, this is the semester from Hell – my eating and sleeping cycles are shot because of my schedule (really bad) and the dwindling food resources on campus. I am so out of it half of the time that writing a cogent comment would be difficult, so I am writing less frequently, for now.

    Got to go.

    The Chicken

  11. MWindsor says:

    Just FYI…

    I had the radio out this afternoon when there should have been some F2 propagation going on. Got nothing. Heard only 1 station in Germany during the WAG contest, and that was just above the mud and faded away before I could get him.

  12. MWindsor says: Got nothing.

    I made a couple QSO today, one with Germany. There’s a lot going on right now on 20m. QSO parties.

  13. Fr. Bryan says:

    There are big QSO parties in New York, Iowa, and South Dakota this weekend that will likely tie up most of the bands. I will be on 40 meters tonight. Listening to the Moonlighters Net right now on 7.279 LSB.

  14. Fr. Bryan says:

    Productive night on 40 meters, 10 contacts, 1 DX QSO with a station in Germany, the rest domestic. Time to shut down.

  15. Father Brian said:
    “It doesn’t have to be too high’ as it need the ground for ground propagation of the RF. I’m not an expert, so maybe WB0YLE can chime on that.”

    Depends, Father. As you approach, oh, 1/4 wavelength height over the ground (actually, the height over the ground should be the same fractional wavelength as the length of the active element in your antenna), you start to pull the angle of radiation horizontally since you develop the conditions that support coupling to the surface, which helps in the propagation of the ground wave.

    You’re actually looking for, at least for DX, something in the 2-10 degree range to maximize the skip distance (in my experience…). Anything more than that (say, mounting a 20m antenna 20 feet off the ground, which is an odd wavelength) and you’ll end up with less couopling to the ground and more reflection skyward, giving you more of an NVIS type of antenna. Good for local, ick for DX.

    FWIW…40 Meters seems to be open tonight…just tagged as German station out of Frankfurt…15 over S9. Guess fixing the amp worked….but think I need to work on the feedline before the winter sets in.

  16. Fr. Bryan says:

    Snagged DJ8OG too. still on WB0YLE?

  17. Fr. Bryan says:

    40 just got very noisy.

  18. I was just on 20m and tried pretty hard for a contact with a special event station in CA. I didn’t have the power to cut through and then the band faded. I listened for a bit on 40m but I didn’t adjust my antenna.

  19. BTW… I also had contact with a German station today.

  20. Fr. Bryan says:

    Just found out that I can not connect to a local Echolink repeater with my DTMF mic on my 2 m/440 rig because outgoing must be a club member. So…to use it I am stuck with my smart phone, which works just as well.

  21. For some reason, I can’t connect to Echolink anymore from my desktop.

    Setting for port forwarding just… wanished!

    I’m trying to figure out the right combination again to get me out!

  22. MWindsor says:

    I like the new call sign, Fr. Z. It’s uncontested so you should get it. Looks like you’re in the group that gets awarded on November 3.

  23. Alan Aversa says:

    St. Maximilian Kolbe, patron of ham radio operators, pray for us!

  24. iamlucky13 says:

    ” I do love those arbor vitae. They remind me of cypresses.”

    In fact, they are a species of cypress.

    By the way, there is a breed of chickens that lays green-shelled eggs, too.

  25. Konichiwa says:

    Working on getting a technician license. Still don’t know what I’m getting myself into, yet. I think it’ll be kind of cool to get an extra antenna for the car. :D The journey has been neat so far.

  26. Fr_Joe_OMI says:

    I must confess to the sin of envy as I really wish that I could set up another loop antenna. Moving from place to place gives me the periodic challenge of trying different wire antennas to fit my new QTH. I had a 40 m vertical loop for a couple of years, and it was the best wire radiator I’ve used so far.
    GUD DX ES 73 – WB5LCU

  27. Fr_Joe_OMI says: Alas, if I could only set up something significant and permanent.

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