Upcoming for 2023

My how the time has gotten away from me – which was pretty much expected. My last post was just before hunting season opened, and I did offer the forewarning that I probably wouldn’t be doing much on this page during that time. Muzzleloading was open this last week, and now it’s closed until we get the ‘Holiday Hunt” week for the final opportunity… meaning I’ll start turning my focus back over here! 2023 may prove to be a little bit of a challenge with keeping it updated over here though – my goal is to keep it scheduled, though maybe a little scaled back. I’ll need to intertwine this with projects I want to do, along with balancing in heavy training days. But more on that in a minute – let’s start with January VHF, and what Plans A-C are at the moment!

January VHF is just about a month away and admittedly I’ve done no prep work as of this point – the initial roof rack system I ordered back in June was an incorrect fit… BUT the one that I wanted to order initially has finally been restocked! So, Plan A: Get this order in within the next two weeks, and get it installed while I have some extra time, and that’ll make getting up and running a much quicker venture. All I’ll be doing is spacing the bars correctly for the pre-drilled setup that the Patriot previously had, as the bars will be front and rear of the vehicle, instead of the sides as my old car was, this should be a simple drop on and go. 

Plan B: I was able to get a hitch system installed in July – though I could only get a 1 ¼” system then, I’ve just found out that they now have a compatible 2” system that I’d like to swap it out with.. For the moment I’d work off the 1 ¼” and utilize my existing mast holders. Drilling out a 6ft piece of aluminum to get the antennas above the vehicle and bolting it though the mast holder. This will likely need to have some extra stability bars to secure to the vehicle to reduce sway. Down the line, this is ideally how I would like to keep my lower band antennas mounted and provide the higher uWave bands the space on the roof that’s rotor controlled. 

Plan C: **Weather Dependent** Setup /P QRP again like I did in June – this is only dependent on weather due to no longer having 4wd. A vehicle charge to 100% using utility mode, plus solar trickle charge to LiFePO batteries, I could very easily power and heat my station for the weekend with enough charge to get home (though it’d only need to be 12 hours at a time). 

Admittedly there’s a Plan D too… operate from home… but the QTH isn’t in the greatest spot with less-than-ideal antennas. I could throw something up for a temporary setup, but I’m really hoping to not do that.

On top of that, I’ve now added transverters for 3400, and 10ghz – 10ghz should be a quick assembly project to get the horn affixed to the dish at the correct distance, and we’ll be on the air. 3400, I need to see what I can cobble together for an antenna in time. To reduce strain on the setup, I’ve gone from the 3-element beam for 6m down to a halo – this provides me with some extra space, and reduces the wind load of existing bands, and provides opportunities to mount antennas for higher bands on the rotatable stack. 

Through this whole thing, I need to make sure to get my training sessions in – this is going to require shortening at least one operating day to accommodate a weekly long-run. In July I’ll be participating in the Iron Man 70.3 Muskoka – and in between I’ll also be participating in the Syracuse Half Marathon, and Buffalo Marathon, both of which I completed this last year as well. This will be my first triathlon event, and I’m starting pretty big. I’m comfortable with the swimming aspect, having been training to get my endurance back this last year, and regularly working out distances well over the 70.3 event distance, but the biking and running back-to-back I’ll have to work on.  

March-May I’ll likely be beginning two-a-day’s to really beef up the stamina for these events, alternating swim/bike, and swim/run days. This is going to be ridiculous, but something I’m really looking forward to! 

Anyways, thanks for reading, and I’ll keep updated posts on the rover build as it comes along in the next couple of weeks!


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