Monday, March 14, 2016


As you no doubt have read in previous posts I like to try to and do as much QRP as possible, especially on CW. I have a number of QRP rigs, 3 Rock Mites, an OHR 100A and a K2, all these I consider reasonably good little radios for me especially with the added bonus of having built them myself.

QRP is not just the Radios though, much is to do with the station set-up, I have a good area as a take-off point no hills or trees are in the way and my antenna system is either the Cobweb up forty feet or a Hustler 6B vertical. I live in an area of outstanding natural beauty so I can’t have a rotatable Yagi or some wonderful antenna system, but hey the Cobweb does well considering. I'm not in a built up area I don't have any serious interference and I have two neighbours; one right next door who’s hardly ever at home, the other is five hundred yards down the road.

One major gripe though, the Yaesu FT 2000D minimum power is 10 watts. Why would Yaesu build a rig with a minimum power of 10 watts why not start at 5 for QRP work , just seems stupid or is it me? I use the FT 2000D quite a lot and I’m stuck on ten watts, surely it would have been fairly simple to have this wonderful rig set at five, I just don’t  understand this, such a missed opportunity with semi QRPers.

So far my record is 1464 miles using a Rock Mite on 0.5 watts this was to Finland, but I have to stress radio conditions were good. The other record I had was reaching Japan on 5 watts with the K2 using CW. I'd contacted the JA station on the FT 2000D using about one hundred and fifty watts and was busy telling him about my K2, after the QSO had finished I decided to try and contact him with the K2 with a "what the hell" attitude as I thought "he'll never hear me", but he came straight back with a 559 report, I couldn't believe it one of my highlights in amateur radio!
But I don't count that as a real QRP session because initially I was on the higher power.

If you never tried QRP I'd recommend you give it a try and see how far you can get out on the lowest power, it's definitely an addictive part of the hobby!

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