Field Day 2018



7,000′ Of Copper Clad Steel Antenna Wire


This weekend I picked up 7,000′ of copper clad steel wire for a three-element rhombic antenna that I will build here this summer.  I also received 1,000′ of 22 gauge hookup wire (orange) for making dipole antennas for SOTA (300 watt rating) and 200′ of 400 ohm window line for the same.

Ten-Tec Omni D Series B Model 546 Rebuilt And Running Better Than New…Literally!


In the early mid -2000’s I bought this Ten-Tec Omni D 546 Series B HF transceiver.  At the time I was told that the radio worked but that one of the bands, 80 metres, did not work on rare occasions.  The radio came.  The radio worked fine.  I never experienced any problem for seven or eight years.  Then I took my antenna down five years ago thinking to replace it.  One thing led to another I never got an antenna back up.  This winter I did get a dipole back up and this summer I will put up a tower and rhombic.  So this winter I decided to overhaul my radios.  Turning this one on 80 metres was missing.  An identical radio that I bought a year or two after this one for parts did not work when I got it.  So I rebuilt both PTO’s in addition to a couple of Century 21 PTO’s.  They still did not work.  A fellow ham who does radio repair out here got the Omni’s but could not get them to work.  A few weeks ago I gave them back to him at his request.  This time he figured it out.  It turned out that the band crystals were all cold soldered in both Omni’s.  The solder was there but none of the crystal’s prongs had been tinned at the factory and the crystals just lifted right out of the sockets!  Using a solder sucker he removed all the solder, tinned the prongs, and resoldered each of the crystals.  The radios work 110%!  He liked the Omni’s so much that I gave him the second one out of thanks.

Ten-Tec’s Omni A’s and D’s were built during the golden age of component radio and are some of the most solid and innovative CW rigs ever put on the air.  And their double MOSFET receiver gate designs are extreme powerful and discerning.  For several months I thought that these forty year old rigs had seen their day but my radio wizard friend has it working literally better than new.  I don’t think that there is too much that he can’t eventually figure out…not bad for an amateur, eh?  Other manufacturers have taken the place of Ten-Tec when it comes to modern innovative CW designs…Elecraft and LNR most notably.  But it is hard to beat the traditional Omni’s and Corsair’s for solid, dependable component radio.  Thanks again for giving this rig new life.  Aging oxidation takes its toll; resoldering gives it all back!

Here it is back in the lineup with the rest…


Ten-Tec 252M Finished

The colour is Bronze by Krylon.  It comes close enough to the original colour of the Ten Tec Omni D and this, its matching switched power supply, the 252M.  This has dried over the past several days and is attached underneath with #12 sheet metal screws and across the top of the faceplate with #8’s,  Originally manufactured with plastic sides, it came to me years ago all broken up.  This is at last much better.  Solid.  Protected.  Shielded.  Better on-off switch.  Able to be altered between a switched mode and a linear mode.  A nice, attractive 18A power supply ready for use in any situation…



µBITX Arrives

On March 4, 2018, I ordered a µBITX for $119 USD which included express shipping via courier.  My radio shipped a week ago yesterday, April 10th, 2018, from Plot No 1057N, Road No 52, Jubilee Hills, Hyderabad 500 033 India.  It took DHL three days to get to Winnipeg by last Thursday evening.  I was contacted for an extra $32.24 for import duty.


On Monday the package was transferred to Canada Post.  It arrived here today.  It was well packed and arrived intact.

I will open it up the rest of the way tomorrow…

…I can’t wait! :)

Follow the build here: