Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Small is beautiful

Although I own an Elecraft K3/100, I get much more enjoyment from making QRP contacts. However, for me, QRP isn't just about turning the power down on your store-bought (or even kit-constructed) radio. It's about making contacts with equipment that is small and simple.

There is something that is just magic about making contact with someone thousands of miles away using a radio small enough to hold in your hand. That's one of the reasons why I've been working on the MFJ Cub recently, and why I ordered a DC20B kit to add to my QRP radio collection.

I decided that the tiny MFJ Cub deserved a tiny Morse key to go with it, so I ordered one of the Christmas keys from Morse Express. You can see the miniature 20m CW station in the photo, next to a copy of SPRAT (the G-QRP Club magazine) which is A5 size, for comparison.

The first contact made with this combo was with George, KZ1H, near Boston MA. Across the pond with just over 1W to an attic dipole using a radio you can hold in your hand. Anyone who says that life's too short for QRP, or that you need an outside antenna to make contacts on HF, doesn't know what they are talking about.

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