Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Second Reversible Beverage Installed

Today we had un-seasonably fine weather so I felt I had to take advantage of it and run out the wire for the second Reversible Beverage. I had purchased 1,000 feet of the WD-1A two-conductor wire and planned to pretty much duplicate the very successful first installation of a 60°/240° Beverage pair. Since my grandsons were out of school, I enlisted their help. After a trip to Subway for lunch, we trekked over the hill and attached the wire to the Beverage "Hub" tree. We then started off on a heading of 160° (the Reverse direction will be 340°) and began stringing out the Beverage wire. Using the same "extension" handle for a paint roller that was used before, we lifted the wire over any available branches to keep it high enough that the deer could pass under it.

The boys were a great help. One carried the ground rod and the ax (used to drive in the ground rod) and the other the spool of wire letting it run over his shoulder as he walked so I could place it above the branches. After awhile the boys would swap jobs and we would have a "water break." We had taken both my cell phone and a FRS radio that allowed them to keep in communication with "Nana" back at the house.

As we were nearing the end of the spool, Owen, who was on point at the time, said "Grandpa, there's a cliff here!" Well, that decided where we ended the Beverage. I'm guessing we were 850 to 900 feet from the Beverage Hub. The ground slopped very steeply down at that point and we chose to install the transformer and ground rod at the brink of the "cliff." In the photo you can see Grant (6 years old) on the Left and Owen (8 years old) on the right and the transformer in a plastic Zip-Loc bag hanging from the tree.

As we started back we ran into one of our neighbors and his 6-year old daughter out walking their dog in the woods and we decided to walk back to their house and then up the street to where we started. In doing that I did not have time to hook up the transformer at the feed end so I'll not be able to test the Beverage yet.

The boys were a great help to me and a good "safety" feature. Grandpa tripped over a branch at one point and sprawled on the ground (no injuries) but it was good to know that they were there in case I really did run into a problem.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

New Feature of Logger32 - Show LoTW User

The current version of Logger32 (3.29.1) has a great New Feature. This feature will add a colored highlight to spots in the BandMap and the DX Spots Window to indicate stations who are known to be LoTW Users. As you can see in the photo of my 160-M BandMap at the left, spots from LZ2ZG, YL2SM, RA4LW, DL6ZXG, and UYØZG all are proceeded by a Green Highlight square. That tells you quickly that these stations are LoTW Users. WOW! Previously if you connected to certain Telnet servers, LoTW Users were indicated by a small "+" sign in the comment field. This was sometimes difficult to see and did not stand out in any way.

Here is the description of this feature from the Logger32 Help file:

Show LotW User

Logger32 has the capability of recognising a DX spot station who is known to use LotW (See also the section entitled Dx Spot Window). A colored highlight to the left of the DX callsign in the BandMap windows indicates a station that uses LotW. This menu item enables that option. Note that each bandmap carries this option separately.

Information for setting the highlight color and the uploading of the necessary LotW user data is given in the section entitled DX Spot WIndow

All you need to do is to download the LoTW Users file to your computer and then enable the display of the "Highlight" in the various windows (BandMap, DX Spots Window, and Monitor Windows.) Here are the Logger32 Help instructions for downloading the file:
To download the latest list of LoTW users, Right click on the DX Spot Window, Left Click SETUP | LOAD LOTW USERS FILE. Click on the “Download from the Internet” button to collect the txt file and follow this with the “Save data” button. This will create a new database LotWUser32 in the default Logger32 directory.
Once you have that file on your computer, you only need to enable the display of the Highlight in the various windows. The Help file tells you how to do it:
To enable/disable LoTW User highlights on the DX Spot Window, right click on the DX Spot Window, then left click SETUP | APPEARANCE | SHOW LOTW USER

To enable/disable LoTW highlights on the Band Map Windows, Click CONFIG | SHOW LOTW USER
I have been hoping the Logger32 crew would implement a feature like this and now that I have it, I can't believe I could ever get by without it!