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Don Dulmage
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VE3LYX Ham Since 1980

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Other Callsigns
First issued VE3LYU

My Ham Radio Interests
Homebrew tubes CW and AM. Minimalist style.
Skeds for low power QSOs with homebrew stuff.

50C6 Cw rockbound with matching 12sn7 regen.
01 TNT 40M with matching 01 regen
40M hartley CW
80M x 40M Am transceiver HB
Two No 19 Wireless Sets
6l6 Breadboard Cw TX and matching 6sl7 regen.
BC454 recvr Operational 80M
ARC 5 T18 transmitter which now covers all of 80M band in CW and AM (cathode modulated through CW key jack)
Twin 811A HB linear Amp.

Other Interests
Speak Deutsch at a functional level, can get by in French but it is hardwork for me.
Make fiddles and play them. (gospel and country)
Drag racer . I run The Senior Dragster. Slant six powered.
I race it at Picton Airfield
Am a writer. I have two books published and many magazine articles in both the USA and Canada. I used to have my own opinion column in a local paper for several years.(View from the Ridge)
Cast aluminum for fun.
Also raised cattle for several years and trucked them. I also bought and sold for others. (Dolmetsch Beef Farm)

In the interest of allowing others to enjoy their clubs I now refrain from joining.(does not play well with others)

Launching antennas.(A simple solution to getting some antenna height)


3/23/2013 4:04:55 PM (2 comments) Add a commentAdd Comment

I am too old to climb now and have a busted rib cage to boot so I would be a fool to try as one fall would be my last for sure. I needed to get an antenna up in a tree. A 132 foot half wave long wire. I had it threaded through an eyelet on a pole near the house. I tied it off about 8 feet up down in the valley. (I live on a cliff) It worked from the git go but I wanted it higher. I have lots of trees down there some with good height. The conventional wisdom was use a slingshot to launch a string. It sort of worked. Up 25 feet or so but the trees are much higher. My goal was to have it more or less level with the end on the pole by the house. Next I tried a bow and arrow. I made the bow and tried several arrows. Both homemade and proper arrows a friend found and gave me. The string was too heavy and the arrows just reached their target but stopped climbing as the string fed out. A friend promised to help with a pro bow but I soon realized his was a SOMEDAY help. I need this now so I persisted. I switched to using my spinning rod to dispense the monofilament. I got several arrows where I wanted but they didn't fall down. Not heavy enough. Some are still dangling in the top of the tree. I was always very good casting with a fishing rod I went for plan C. I tied the roll of electrical tape (I had been using for attaching the fishing line or string to the arrow) to the fishing line at the end of the rod. Summoning everything I remembered from my pre-teen days of fishing I aimed for the top of a poplar tree and cast. Bingo! Right through the spot and through another branch about 3 feet higher. The weight of the roll brought the line back to earth. Not instantly but within a few minutes I had it in my hand. I hauled a 1/4 inch nylon rope up, stopping at one point to tie it to the antenna insulator. Carefully I hauled the antenna up. It is now almost all the way up. It is caught on a branch about 30 inches below my goal height but a good wind from the east will bounce that loose. Probably by morning. It is currently up at least 50 feet and if all goes will may even rise to the height or the second higher branch if the snag comes loose. (it isnt snagged per say. It just wont slip by a budd on the branch. )If it does or doesnt I am happy anyway. It is at least twice as high as it was before I tried this and it worked great even then. So forget the slingshot, the magic ideas and trick deals. Just get a roll of tape and your spinning rod and cast up into your favourite tree. So easy I felt stupid not having done it in the first place. Want to hear it? 3725kcs weekend mornings or 7290kcs weekdays before the Aisan broadcaster comes on. If you want to hear the cathode modulated ARC 5 just set up a sked on 80M and I would be glad to give it a try.
As of today I have the antenna at full height and worked K4SQP "and the group" during the test with my DX60B (barefoot) Thanks fellows.

Read the 2 comments after the break below.


by KG9RH 3/30/2013 7:02:08 AM

Thanks for the great idea! I live right on a lake in the Northwoods of Wisconsin and have been working on a "spud gun" but have to wait until the ice goes off the lake and the temps warm up as the schedule 40 PVC is dangerous at low temperatures. Your idea is simple, something that should have been obvious (especially to a fisherman that lives on a lake in the forest) but I never thought of it until I read your article. I really appreciate your posting. I'm getting my rods ready for spring anyway, so I will try your idea later today. Super idea!

by VE3LYX 3/30/2013 3:07:30 PM

All The best. Like the Hooked on Phoenic ad used to say, "It worked for me." Actually this antenna , a half wave long wire (half on 80M)has changed my operation mode dramatically. I am now up close to 70 feet above ground and in the clear. Wish i had thought of it earlier. I had years ago tried it with a lure but it didnt have the weight.The roll of tape (actaully a bit more then a half roll was so perfect I am still a bit surprised. It sailed right up through the crotch of the tree as easy as pie. I had to pinch myself.

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