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Ham Radio Projects for your Delight and Inspiration

Ham Radio Projects for your Delight and Inspiration

a very good day my name is Callum from
DX Commander somebody pointed out on the comments the other day “he’s
using this channel to promote his business”! Yes that’s right – that’s what
the channel is, it’s my little company but probably only one in ten of the
videos are produced there really are to do my products this is just me as well, isn’t it. but it’s ages since I’ve done, er what do you call it.. channel update there we are it’s where I’m going over the next or two three
months ago a ton of experiments planned for me and because of that we can
document it and have some fun on a channel as well
so I put my glasses back on right we’ve got to fix the power supply noise on the
Victron on okay that’s giving me well it’s a couple of s points over S five so
but I’ve thought about this that’s probably S7 isn’t it yes five plus two
is still seven in well old money anyway so but James has ordered some really
nice the proper ferrites so I’m hoping we’ll cure most of it with that all
right if not we’ll have to Faraday cage it and
get down to some capacitors and also as a lot of things but anyway let’s see if
we can fix that all right to Victron on as well and what I might do is make a
little film on the off-chance the Victron on actually see it and go ooh and get in
touch with me so I’ll make the video right it’ll be two and a half minutes
something like that and then I’ll send that to the support people that Victron
on say hey I got this problem what do you reckon whatever we’ve actually got
to finish this whole 400 watt linear amplifier 12 volt off-grid on grid kind
of system because certainly in the next two weeks
because I want the 9700 I’m running properly onto 590 I’m running properly
so we have a hundred watts on two meters, 400 on certainly 10 and 40 was
my two favorite bands really.10 weird in the winter I know but if I can get
enough local people with a vertical on 10 we can have a bit of a laugh on a
Sunday night or something who knows so but I want to finish that because the
next thing on my list here my list is just there is I want to go portable so
drive up to the hills and we’ll go portable I need to power the laptop the
old Mac that I run Windows 7 on on a power that ideally off 12 volts when he
takes 19 now somebody actually just cut one of the old leads off and managed to
actually run the laptop on 12 volts but there’s not enough to charge the battery
I thought how’s the interesting side project if you know that means I might
do that as well I’ve got a spreadsheet out alder 80 meter pole the big thing we
did I showed you last Saturday night on the livestream and I’ll put the link to
that NASA detail there I think but if not we’ll be there detail it all down in
all of the components and I’ve decided after James and I think it was Mike and
a couple other guys on the live chat last Saturday night we’ll guy it at 4 8
and 12 meters that’s all T I really wanted 5 and 10 but it’s an 80 meter
part a bit of a beast and I think it’s fair to guide to three points and then
I’ll come up with a system to show you how you actually do it as a one-man band
alright so because I’ve worked it all out don’t quite good like that I want to
make a video where we compare insulated wire like dx10 or DX 50 to bare copper
wire and then I was lying in the bar tonight inside a really good scrub down
the workshop all day and then I thought well we could do we
could compare wire copper wire insulated wire bare wire and maybe get some copper
tubing and a big expensive but for a make a good video
and we’ll cut everything exactly five meters to the end of the fault connector
if you know the mean copper tube and then aluminium tubing and just to see is
there changes in where these things are resonance okay we won’t do steel well we
could do actually I could do stainless steel and steel as well maybe cut
everything exactly five meters stick it up a pole I don’t know how we’re gonna
hold the copper one up because I’ll be quite heavy but anyway we’ll come up
with a solution there are still at least two microwaves I want to get rid of so
we need to melt some stuff in the microwave now how do I film inside a
microwave somebody said cut a little hole in the very back and just point
your cheap little camera through it because it probably only needs to be
half the size of a matchbox and I’ve got somewhere if I can find it a really old
crappy camera just because next week Treach it because although you can see
through the grill it will be very good with it I need to actually see what’s
happening because I know I’ve got some plastic components the will melt and
burst into flames that just saw a big good rid of these microwave so we need
to do the film basically and then my own personal stuff so I’ve decided we will
dig that trench to get the to coax lines and the control line in and that the
main coax line is to be able to with the control lines of coax and the control
line will switch aerials in the top field the other coax line is for receive
aerials okay because I want I wanted to test out some receiver and the antennas
so that’s why I need to coax and then one space I could
I’m due to receive down the same character could annihilate becomes a
build or more difficult and if I do it that way we’ve got a backup coax line so
if I’m absolutely serious about that I’ll put the call back out so genuinely
you know we’ll do like a 10 o’clock shift but three hours will dig this
trench about eight inches deep only we’ll hand do it pull some sand in a
little bit of conduit okay I have it all prepared just laid in a little bit of
sand over the top and then just rake all a bloody shit back in okay because it’s
all that Stoney stuff anyway and I’ll check with Kevin the farmer don’t want
him to I don’t want to think I’ve done it without asking if you love me I’ll
just say how I just want to put little furrow and they aligned down it and then
close it all up and you’ll never know is that all right
see what he says it just might be a little bit bigger than a furrow the only
thing so dig that trench I want to build so I’ve got mark 1 and mark 2 DX
commandest that I’ve used on holiday I want to take one out of stock and
actually build it as the manual says is every time I’ve built at the ex-commando
I just need a bit of paracord not just pull some off the reel it would be fun
to actually build but I mean it’s a bit of a challenge actually I wonder what
the last manufacturer you ask one of the design engineers or one of the directors
or the president that’s your Ariel go and build it and
actually put it up and see what it how good bad or indifferent is and followed
the user guide so because I want to do that anyway
I thought we could make a bit of a video out of it you know it’s a bit of a
promotion tool for me as well you know so we’ll do that that’d be quite good so
build out from stock I’ve got some nice lights to put in so that bright light
that’s in my face I’ve got four of those down the down the farm and so I put two
in the main workshop and two in there kind of clean room
so it’s just a day faffing around with a bit of cable and a couple of switches so
it’s still got to do it though and I just this is that clever to-do list if
you know what I mean and I’ve got some big 15 into 15 inch
monitors here now we already got some 12 inch monitors on a 1 HD telly that’s
right for the gia cronin telly and YouTube whoever you want big telly and
the big bonus these huge monitors we’ll put in the because I’m quite often in
the dirty room drilling and stuff and I can’t quite hear the music very well so
I thought since I’ve got these big monitors and ones I’ll stick them up on
the wall I’ll do that and then I wanted a t X Co the temperature-compensated
oscillator thing from a 590 because I noticed on 15 meters hum a whisker out
and I think a TX Co movie maybe the hole maybe I don’t need a TX e oh maybe I
could just calibrate it myself I’m a bit confused though and I’ve watched a video
tonight actually about a guy who fitted a TX Co and I’m not quite sure when he’s
in transmitting when he’s gonna receive it didn’t quite see the money Ronnie
skimmed it but so that’s quite a lot of stuff in the pipe
we do it Saturday Night Live I’m breathing join that and I think you are
as well as long as I’m not too drunk when I do these things that we find then
we got Gerard on Wednesday afternoon he’s coming around here so I’ve got to
set up a couple of chairs some microphones it’s a bit daunting actually
cuz I’ve never had two of us doing doing this you know a couple of cameras get a
goal of colour correction right they’ll probably do that over there by the drums
it just looked nice a nice little backdrop little bit out of focus and
then Wednesday night I’m at Telford seeing the telephone I’m doing a talk
and I thought what we’d do is talk about antenna wire and could the consumables
that we all go through and few other odds and ends a couple of ditties little
half hour special and then have a cup of tea you whatever if you’re not already
subscribed to the channel please consider doing so when my subscriber
let’s go up I’ll get a bit of extra confidence I’m doing the right thing
there’s a lot of superb projects coming up and it would be a shame we’ve met
each other now for either of us to miss out okay so my name’s Callum I’m from
DX Commander I am enjoying my radio projects at the moment,
I trust you enjoy yours and I will see you next time bye for now .

39 comments on “Ham Radio Projects for your Delight and Inspiration

  1. I put some of the wall warts or blocks in a hand cary metal toolbox to help as a faraday cage to keep the rf from the wall warts in the toolbox.

  2. Add capacitors from the mains to ground in the device. That seems to be a common solution.
    Suggest trying tinned steel wire. This is used for "hot wire" to keep animals inside fences with pulsing high voltage….Ask Kevin about it.

  3. The idea to test the various materials to build the antenna out of seems really interesting… will look forward to them 🙂 73

  4. My Fav bands are 15, 20, 40 can't get on 80 yet need to add a coil and a piece of wire to my home brew 67 foot EFHW antenna which is based on Steve Ellington's design. One day I hope to get your DX Commander Classic when money permits. 73s again Callum have a great weekend. KN4IFI.

  5. Sounds exciting! Just renewed my callsign after 25 years being lapsed. So you're helping to give me inspiration and enthusiasm for the hobby👍

  6. Looks like exciting times ahead cal, at my qth i used this ducting works great mate love the the channel keep it up. Got you in the log when we spoke on your hols

  7. Seeing you are on the farm. One thing you mite want to test is electric fence wire .
    Its cheap and is made to hold up to the weather.
    . I have used it in the past with good results .
    N8QJU 73

  8. Hi Cal,
    Another fine video. When you edit the video of building the antenna from stock, be sure to leave in any bloopers. That shows you are human just like the rest of us. When I was out in the field running my telescope and other equipment off DC power, I would remove the battery from the laptop to save the energy the laptop would expend to charge the battery. Just have to be very diligent not to disrupt the power to the laptop or all will be lost. 73 WB3BJU

  9. I have always wondered that when you lop the aerial wire around the "dog-bone" thingy the aerial "length" was the length of the wire or the length up to the end of the Dog bone. Bare copper is easier to imagine in that case.

  10. A note on the laptop. I found a direct single stage 12 to 19V PSU that I use here in the RV for the laptop. When testing it, I did a video back when I was outfitting the RV, I measured power consumption by using an inverter and the laptop's original supply, and then using the 12 to 19v power supply direct. I found it was 42% more efficient using the single stage approach.
    They're quite cheap and available through amazon or ebay. It's been working fine for almost a year now.
    The other thing I do, is I have an old eeePC netbook running linux. Many of the netbooks run off 12V from the get go. It draws an average right around 1 amp. I use if for digital modes mostly, but it's my go to when I'm really trying to conserve battery power. It could run windows, which it came with originally, but slowly. Under linux, it's quite a good performer even though it's more than 10 years old now.

  11. I'm curious to see the results of your suggested wire and metals testing for resonance. My experience has been that wire guage has a greater effect and tube diameter also has a greater effect, etc.

    Something to with "skin effect" ??


    Try one for your laptop

  13. Hi Calum.

    I have several Vitron and noco 12/24 volt charges and psu's at work

    both makes emit horrendous rfi s7-9 on HF and VHF it appears to be a common problem

    with all makes of switch mode charges and psu's we also have a machine with a

    360 amp 84vDC to 40-80 volt ac inverter controller when it is running

    rfi is 40+ on vhf It has several ferrites on the leads but way to small for the current

    I think manufacturers dont appreciate or consider rfi when desigening such units

    a Faraday cage sounds a good option good luck

    [Video 1]: "This is exactly how I design my aerials";
    [Video 2]: "This is precisely how my aerials are constructed, including full details";
    [Video 3]: "This is how you can make and erect an aerial just like mine";
    [Video 4]: "Here are some real results from using this aerial. Please ask if there's any tiny detail I didn't mention. Now you can do it all for yourself." (Or, if it's too much of a faff, I can sell you a complete kit for a very reasonable price.)

  15. You realize MMANA has the function where different types of conductors can be modeled. I have played with it and for the same type of metal, there no significant change in frequency, but up at VHF and UHF the band width of the antenna changes with larger elements.

  16. Summer is about over in the US … first big snow out west 50" … 1270mm to you >smile< means time to move indoors and play radio. Your announcement of upcoming projects is well timed for me. I've been missing out recently because of outdoor activities. Thanks Callum!

  17. Callum, Remember your duct needs to account for the weight of delivery wagons 🚚 and farm vehicles 🚜 🐄…👀

    For the interview, don’t forget the ubiquitous BBC side-table and vase of flowers 💐 😁

    Nice video 👍🏻


  18. Hi Cal, you know DX commander inside out! Would it not be better to video a novice ham opening the box and then putting up the antenna? Jim M7BXT

  19. Could record via a prism or periscope type mirror. RF should go through it and miss your camera if it is just glass. – Or use your Acme RF goggles. 🙂

  20. Hi Cal, Not about to give a lecture on trenching a gravel driveway but a reminder that you may want to seal both ends of the conduit to keep water out of the pipe, and or put drains in it as a path for water egress. Sounds like a lot of fun in the works.

  21. Put the cable in a plastic tube when in ground…. Protect from mice and sharp rocks…. Have a nice weekend. And of course..enjoy your r…..

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