CQ Amateur Radio December 2020

CQ is the magazine for active hams, with a focus on the practical. Every article is clearly written and aimed at involving you, the reader...whether it's a story of operating from some exotic location, an article to deepen your understanding of ham radio science and technology, or a fun-to-build project that will have practical use in your ham shack. Join us on our monthly journey through the broad and varied landscape of the world's most fascinating hobby!

United States
CQ Communications, Inc.
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12 Utgaver

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3 min

COVID-19 UPDATE The COVID-19 pandemic has radically altered plans for any social gathering and ham-fests and ham radio-related conferences are taking a huge hit. CQ urges all readers to please check with the organizers of these events to ensure the event will still be held. DECEMBER DELTA, OHIO — The Fulton County Amateur Radio Club will hold its Winterfest 2020 from 8-11 a.m., Saturday, December 5 at the Village of Delta Memorial Hall, 401 Main Street. Contact: Bryan Patterson, KB8ELG, (419) 822-5038 or (419) 250-6694. Email: <kb8elg@hotmail.com>. Website: <http://k8bxq.org>. Talk-in 147.195+. VE exams. OCALA, FLORIDA — The Silver Springs Radio Club will hold it 2020 Hamfest beginning 7:30 a.m., Saturday, December 5 at the First Christian Church, 1908 East Fort King Street. Website: <www.k4gso.us/hamfest>. Talk-in 146.610- (PL 123). VE exams. PLANT CITY, FLORIDA — The…

9 min
ham radio news

P5 Remains Atop Clublog Most-Wanted List Clublog has released its new list of “most-wanted” DX entities and North Korea (P5) is once again at the top. The rest of the top-ten, in order, are all islands: Bouvet (3Y/B), Crozet (FT5/W), Scarborough Reef (BS7H), San Felix (CEØX), Pratas (BV9P), Kure (KH7K), Johnston (KH3), Peter I (3Y/P), and Kerguelen (FT5/X). The complete list is on the Clublog website at <https://clublog.org/mostwanted.php>. Nominations Open for Hamvention Awards The Dayton Hamvention® is accepting nominations for its four annual awards until February 15, 2021. Awards will be made for Technical Achievement, Special Achievement, Amateur of the Year, and Club of the Year. These are considered to be among the most prestigious awards the amateur radio community confers each year. Nominations may be emailed to <awards@hamvention.org> or mailed to Hamvention,…

5 min
zero bias: a cq editorial

This has certainly been quite a year … and in many respects, I think we’re all glad it’s ending. But along with the obvious negatives, 2020 has had some good things to remember as well. If it’s possible for a pandemic to have a silver lining, it has for ham radio. With many of us spending lots more time at home, the ham shack has been beckoning as a way to keep our minds active and to keep in touch with friends (old and new), even when in-person visiting has been limited. Club nets and online meetings have maintained social contacts within our ham communities. Participation in contests has been through the roof and restrictions on gatherings have prompted new or improved methods of conducting socially-distanced multi-op contesting (we’ve highlighted…

2 min
news bytes

Both ARRL and CQ are making changes in certain contest rules in order to provide more flexibility for multi-operator contesting in light of both the Coronavirus pandemic and advances in remote operating technology. ARRL DX Contest In late October, the ARRL issued the following guidelines for multi-op stations competing in the 2021 ARRL DX Contest (both CW and phone), temporarily permitting “team” contesting from multiple locations (but note that there must be an actual “multi-operator contest station” in the mix): • Team members may operate from their home stations in conjunction with the multioperator station. • Their home station must be located within a radius of 100 kilometers (62 miles) of the multioperator contest station. • Their home station must be located within the same DXCC entity as the multioperator contest station. In the case…

8 min
how to tune a yagi antenna

“Trial-and-error should be a process if one wants the best performing antenna.” I have been asked a number of times, “How do I tune my Yagi antenna?” I have answered these requests in writing. However, I have been spending considerable time listening on 40 meters while I do various things in the ham shack and have been saddened by the all-too-frequent confusion some hams have over tuning an antenna versus obtaining a good match. Here is what I have found to be the best answer to both tuning and matching based on practical experience: I believe an antenna should be tuned before it is matched. Tuning consists of trimming and tweaking the antenna (or antenna array) itself to resonance on its design frequency, as installed. Matching tunes the antenna and feed system…

8 min
screwdriver antenna controller for your smartphone

Pick up any ham radio magazine from the sixties and you will likely see an ad with the Webster Band Spanner mobile antenna mounted on the back bumper of a Corvette convertible. Changing frequency was a matter of pulling over on the side of the two-lane and sliding the whip up or down, which moved a contact along a coil wound inside the antenna body. Then, in a stroke of pure genius, Don Johnson, W6AAQ, and others made the coil moveable, attached an electric screwdriver motor to it, and the screwdriver antenna was born. Now, frequency could be adjusted from the comfort of the front seat. Now, as then, installation of a screwdriver antenna involves snaking the power cable from the cabin to the battery and the coax and control cable…