Progress Made: RFI

For just one moment, let’s forget my wife can hear my talking through her headset when I transmit on 20M when she is stuck in some damn battle on World of Warcraft. Forget for a moment that when key up on 40M the refrigerators begins to shake. As Bruce, WA8IQR said, “sounds like you’re working on your WAA award….Worked All Appliances.” Close because I have already worked the gateway modem from AT&T, the front yard sprinklers, the Toshiba big screen television, my weather station and the wireless home phone.

With that said, I picked up an MFJ-264, 1500 watt, air cooled dummy load from HRO today. I was able to tune the Alpha 76PA to by antennas and rig. Looking at the graph I made the VSWR readings were all under 1.4:1 and the power output (depending on band) was no lower than 1100 watts. I’ll take that, considering my setup. I also installed the Array Solutions 50 ohm line isolator. I must give Bob (W5OV) at Array Solutions big props for getting this to me overnight. Outstanding service. I will use Array Solutions again, best customer service I have experienced yet.

The line isolator is connected to the output of the watt meter via a jumper and the antenna feed line is connected to the other side. Seems to be working from what I can tell. Why I am still getting RF interference in the house is something I must continue to troubleshoot. In what little transmitting I did on 40M the gateway modem never disconnected.

Hopefully I can make it through the day on 20M without any problems. I will attempt to work 40M and should be more successful than I was during the SS CW portion of the contest. I am off on Sunday and Monday, so I can attempt to work 24 hours. I will be happy with 20 hours, so we will see.