W9TTW station 6.0


Reincarnations of my shack seem to be happening often. I have gone through about 3 different changes in the past year. I rung in the new year with my current setup, a KX3, Ten Tec 418 Amp, and the Wavenode power meter. I think this is the setup I will keep for awhile. KX3 is a nice rig however it takes some time to get acquainted with its operation. RX I/Q is nice as well for use with HDSDR. Hope I am done with changes for a while don’t think my brain can handle much more info!



WSM 650AM “The Legend”

On my way back from Florida, Ruth and I stopped at WSM 650 AM radio station. WSM uses a monster Blaw Knox antenna for transmission. When the 878-foot tower was built in 1932, it was the tallest antenna in North America. Its height was reduced to 808 feet (246 m) in 1939 when it was discovered that the taller tower was causing self-cancellation in the “fringe” areas of reception of the station (it is now known that 195 electrical degrees, about 810 feet, is the optimum height for a Class A station on that frequency). For a period during World War II it was designated to provide transmissions to submarines in the event that ship-to-shore communications were lost. It is now one of the oldest operating broadcast towers in the United States. It was also part of the CONELRAD US National Emergency Plan in the event of a nuclear war, or another national catastrophe. We just happened to be there on the 80th anniversary of the tower and the radio station. I was able to get up close to the antenna and related gear. The transmitter house was open but due to the long line to get in and our travel schedule we had to skip that part. I will post more pictures in the coming days. 73




Tuning unit for DDRR antenna

Tuning unit for DDRR antenna

25 Countries worked

These are all confirmed VIA

A visit to the Wizard!

 I went to visit the Wizard today, I delivered some valves for his amplifier. Here he is knuckle deep in his Heathkit HA-14. Not shown in the picture but always there to help was his trusty assistant station engineer Tucker, who provides quality control at the WW9WG radio station. As always there was good conversation which ranged from how to properly blow up a 3 phase motor to the correct lenght of a windom antenna.

From welder to power supply

This has been another on going project an old welder that I couldn’t get parts for. I decided to turn it into a 90 amp variable power supply. Still have a few things to finish, mounting fuses, crowbar circuit. I just need to get the nerve to hook it up to a radio! Ha!

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Added the AC and DC fuse circuits today. just need to add the crowbar circuits and a power switch and a good smoke test!

Battery power

A couple of moths ago I bought a new radio, Yaesu FT-897D, the plan is to operate portable, whether it be camping or backpacking. Power is always the problem when you are operating portable some campsites have power some do not, so I am trying to come up with a good source of power for the radio. When it comes to battery power the selection is vast with pros and cons for each type of battery. I researched the new Lithium polymer batteries with what looks to have very promising applications to power the radio. A company called Antigravity Batteries makes a 6.6 Ah battery that only weighs 14 ounces. I just got the battery in the mail and have not had time to test yet, I called the manufacturer to discuss the application that I am going to use the battery for. They stated that there should be no problems with using the battery to power the radio they just cautioned not letting the battery go below 10.5 volts as to not damage the battery. I will post the outcome of further testing! 73 Tabb

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I did some testing this week with the Antigravity battery, looks like it should work. I get about one and a half hours out of the battery before it needs to be recharged. I made some QRP contacts this week on 17 meters running about 15 watts, you can check my logbook to see the stations worked every thing on the 25th was worked at 15 watts, and I also made some QRP to QRP contacts. I received the battery cut off switches this week also. One of them is rated to cut out at 11.7 volts dc so that is the one I will probably use. The charger works nicely to as it charges the battery back up in about 10 minutes. If I have two batteries I can be using one and charging the other at the same time. The next project will be to package it in a nice portable assembly, pictures to come! Should make a nice lightweight setup!


I think it is always good to have a little competition in life it keeps the creative juices flowing. I have tried building web pages in the past but with no luck HTML is just to complicated. A few months ago my fellow Ham geek buddy Jeff N9IZ started a WordPress blog so I thought I would give it a try. I will try to keep it up to date with my latest creations and experiments.  73 Tabb