Re: QRP rig for Maritime Mobile

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From: Jeffrey Herman (jeffrey@math.hawaii.edu)
Date: Sun Nov 27 1994 - 20:35:53 EST


I took a sailboat from Hawaii to California about 10 years ago - the
voyage lasted 22 days. I checked into the 20M maritime net daily
which provided a *great* comfort; at times they would even provide
a phone patch directly to the Weather Service.

What rig you use will be a personal choice, but regarding the antenna
I would recommand hoisting a long wire between the top of the mast
and the transom (with insulators on each end), and another wire
to a keel bolt for ground (thus using the ocean as your counterpoise).
The long wire will almost be vertical (well...) so you'll have an
effective ground plane antenna.

I would not recommend using any of the rigging since the mechanical
connections are not electrically sound (use your ohm meter to check
resistance between two point in the rigging, then shake the rigging
and measure again - the resistance will change!).

If you've got an HF marine band radio then certainly take a QRP
rig with you; but if your amateur radio gear is the only radio
aboard then for your safety make sure it has QRO capability!
If you need to call for help you want to make sure you're
heard on the first call, for it might be your only call possible.

Jeff NH6IL (ex US Coast Guard CW operator at CG Radio Honolulu: NMO)

P.S. This is sort of off the QRP topic, but if anyone is interested
in a 7-part series I wrote about CG communications, and in particular,
about the 500 kHz international CW calling/distress freq. let me know
and I'll email you the series. It has appeared in several ham club
newsletters, and might even find its way into a book someone is
writing.


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