Been way too long…

It’s been far far too long since I last posted about my favorite hobby – Amateur Radio.

Last time I posted I didn’t know but my land lord wanted their condo back so that their daughter could move in. Since then I moved nearly 700km and am living in the Cariboo region of British Columbia. I adore my new home and land, a place that allows me to have antennas!

Here are all the things I have failed to blog about:

Radio Projects

  • 80 meter loop around my back yard with ~270ft of copper-clad steel wire, fed with 450ohm window line.
  • 40 meter delta loop, mounted vertically, fed with 1/4lamda of 75ohm coax, and then ~35ft of 50ohm RG213.
  • 20 meter vertical (as seen in a previous post).
  • 10 meter mobile whip mounted on a pole.
  • 2 meter/70 centimeter Comet GP-6 antenna mounted on the roof, with LM400 snaked through the roof.
  • Antenna grounding system. >3ft deep hole with a grounding plate and 2-gauge wire back to the shack.
  • 6 meter portable Yagi temporarily installed.
  • 8-port antenna pass-thru for coaxial lines into my ham-shack.
  • Everything on radio bench has been grounded to a common bus.
  • Fixed the VE7RQL Dragon Mountain Repeater in Quesnel (spares swapped in and tuned, a big thanks to VE7LAL, VE7GLS, VE7ANL, and others for parts, access, and accompaniment)
  • Fixed the VE7RES Milburn Mountain Repater in Quesnel (Battery charger and string of 2V cells were hooped. Worked with VE7PW, VE7YY, VA7RC, and VE7EQU to get spares and then did the install with VE7YY)
  • Installed APRS on Dragon Mtn. Donated a Comet GP-3 to the cause.
  • Installed a BCWARN link from Dragon Mtn to Milburn Mtn, and a shot to an ISP who is letting trickle bandwidth for the APRS Digi on Dragon.
  • Convinced two locals to get their amateur radio accreditation (no, they did it all on their own). Congrats to VE7EOL and VE7BNR.
  • Installed a controller-managed “APRS reset feature” up at Milburn Mountain. VE7EQU, Andy, supplied a salvaged 12v relay, and VE7EOL and I went up there and wired it up and programmed the controller. The power uses the NC contacts, and when we send a DTMF code to the controller over the air it will run a macro to engage the relay (opening the NC path) and then disengage it after 3 seconds. This provides a power reset for the Tiny Trak TNC that keeps locking up.
  • Wrote a Perl script to collect data from my weather station via the WeatherUnderground API (which I feed using the Acu-rite bridge) and send it out over APRS-IS where the Dragon Mtn I-Gate will beacon it (because it is within the programmed 25km radius for Internet-to-RF beaconing). All of this just so that I can look at pretty icons on my Kenwood D710g.
  • Working on fixing a remote VHF base with UHF-uplink. POS….
  • Collecting derelict repeater hardware from various places. The Two Sisters Mountain Repeater, the VE7ZOE Wells BC repeater, etc…

Tech Projects

  • New Computer (Asus Sabertooth X97)
  • New Firewall (pfSense in a VERY over-the-top build)
  • New home network cabling (Cat6 everywhere)
  • New NAS (FreeNAS with 4x1TB NAS-optimised drives)
  • New VMWare ESXi home-lab. Sarah is using the Redmine application on it’s own VM to manage our wedding planning. She calls it Wedmine.
  • Weather Station installation.

Home Projects

  • Bought a new home, and moved into it…
  • New roof.
  • Replaced the “garberator” in the kitchen.

Life Projects

  • Weightloss
  • New role at work.
  • Not much else…


It’s been an awesome year!

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