AB7TT Attacked by Javelinas, Fox Escapes

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From: Joe Gervais (vole@primenet.com)
Date: Sat Sep 27 1997 - 04:07:40 EDT


Howdy Folks,

Well here's one for the "Smack Yourself Upside the Head
with a Spam Loaf" files. I was warming up on 30m before
the Chuck Hunt and was having fun. Chatted with N1RZK
(a QRO critter) in NH for awhile, and he said my sig was
buzzy. :-( So figured it was time to get another opinion.

Luckily Jake (N4UY) in VA was quick to oblige by tail-
ending me. Jake and I had chatted a few times before,
most notably when I was camped at the Grand Canyon last
Spring, listening to the pack of howling coyotes closing
in on my CW sigs. I was hoping their interest was more
in CW than CW ops! Next time I'll use headphones. ;-)

Anyhoo, trusty ol' Jake said my sig sounded just fine.
Hmmph. Figured the NH op had a bad rcvr or something.
Jake and I signed to switch to 40m and hunt the woodChuck.
(Yeah yeah, hindsight is 20/20... :-) )

No sign of Chuck, but I *did* hear Harvey (N6MM) talking
about Chuck and Fox conspiracies on 7.039. Figured I'd
tailend 'em and get the scoop. Fired off a "de AB7TT"
and it sounded like Harvey came back, but I'll never
know for sure. My rig freaked. Random dits and dahs all
over. Possessed, it was. By spastic spirits with sloppy
fists. Last I heard was someone sending "Joe?" before
all heck broke loose. :-(

Puzzled I was. My QRP+ had always behaved like a good
puppy. And now this. Ol' Harvey must've thought I was
being attacked by rabid javelinas or something. That's
when ScQRPion Dan (N7VE) gave me a phone call out of the
blue. After a Vulcan mind meld, we tracked down the (now
obvious) trouble. The 2 wires connecting my key to the
rig were both cracked beneath the insulation! A shaky
connection at best. Must've caused the buzz the NH ham
heard too. ARGH! Never even considered the possibility!

A little cutting and soldering later, I'd missed the
ChuckFest but heard Les (KL7J) calling CQ. Had a very
nice 35 minute chat with him (lucky bugger lives one
mile from one of the best salmon streams in Alaska!)
and he said my sig was FB. No buzz, no chirp, no badgers.
He had a sked, so I started calling "CQ DX DE AB7TT/QRP",
which got me a nice chat with Hiro (JQ3ICQ - a really
cool call, actually).

So there you have it. Two flaky wires. One frazzled
QRPer. And a happy ending. Now if only I could've
worked that Zambia ham on 30m before the #*^$*&! pileup
found him. Was fun listening to the JA pileup on a
very faint Mongolia station though.

30m - when the Fox is hiding, there ain't no better
place to call home. :-)

Cheers de AB7TT,

-Joe, vole@primenet.com, AZ ScQRPions (Phoenix)

"'Fraid nobody around here, understands my potato;
  Think I'm only a Spudboy, looking for a real tomato." -DEVO


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