GOT A PROBLEM?
The only dumb question is the one not asked.
The objective of the Got A Problem? program is to seek out those club members who could use some help and connect them with appropriate club resources willing to assist. The principal focus is technical stuff like "what do I need so I can do xxx?" or maybe "what does yyy mean?" or how about "I built this neat kit but it doesn't seem to be working". You get the idea. The rules are simple: there are no dumb questions and each one is important.
The methodology is evolving but here's where we are at present:
1. ANY problem or question should be emailed to the program coordinator, Jim K7MQV (k7mqv@ARRL.net). Jim will acknowledge the receipt of the problem/question. Some additional back and forth may be needed to get clarification.
2. Next, the problem/question will be posted here on the club website (see list below) so that the largest number of club member helpers can see them and offer help. PLEASE NOTE: The posted problems/questions will NOT reveal the identity of the originator, so don't be bashful.
3. Willing helpers will contact the program coordinator who will arrange contact between the willing helper and the person needing help.
4. The program coordinator will track how these mentoring sessions go. Some problems will be resolved and some may not. That's OK. That's life. But we, as a club will have given it our best shot and that's what it's all about.
List of Got A Problem? requests for help and status—
Problem #: 04
Date Posted: May 10, 2019
A club member asks if someone would be willing to help with a few questions on RMS Express and local Gateways.
Volunteer Helper: Matt Kozma, AE7MK
Status: On June 11 the following email feedback was received from the person requesting this help:
"I spoke with Matt and we got several things resolved. Once I started trying nodes on 40 meters I started getting contacts. I was also trying to use QRP and that doesn't work. Once I started running 90-100 watts I started making contacts."
The person needing this assistance thanks Matt for answering their questions and the relationship established with Matt has been, and will continue to be, very valuable.
So as Sargent Preston used to say to his wonder dog, King, "I guess this case is closed".
Problem #: 03
Date Posted: March 27, 2019
So I have a Yaesu 857D that has a 2m plug in and then an antenna tuner for HF. I have 2 antennas, 2m/70cm and HF. 2m direct to radio. HF to tuner to radio. I am wondering how, or even if, I can use an antenna switch or two to save me from swapping coax cables every time I want to switch bands from HF to 2m/70cm?
Or can I just leave everything attached and just switch bands on the radio? It would seem prudent to disconnect the antenna not in use? Either through a switch or through physically removing the cable which is what I do now.
Volunteer Helper: Jim, K7MQV
Status: (April 1, 2019) Turns out the 857D radio has separate coax output connectors, one dedicated to 2m and the other for the HF bands. So this ham's intuition was correct-- just connect the 2m antenna to the one coax connector, and connect the HF antenna to the other (HF) antenna connector. No need to disconnect whichever antenna is not being used.
This ham also uses an external HF antenna tuner and wants to be able to use either of two antennas for HF operation. The final set-up diagram is shown below. Case closed. Good DX!
Problem #: 02
I have a brand new Baofeng UV-5R+ attached to a brand new Mobilinkd TNC-2 with the proper Mobilinkd connector. Also in the mix is a LG Nexus 4 in prime condition that has successfully bluetooth connected to the TNC. Also the TNC has been able to talk to the Baofeng, but not correctly.
My feeling is there is some parameter set on either the phone or the radio that is not allowing a successful link and transmission to APRS.FI. This is all new to me, I have been working on this for days, do not know what else to do or where to look. It may be a very simple setting, all the hardware seems very good.
For help I will go to helper's location if that is more convenient for them.
Date Posted: March 12, 2019
Volunteer Helper: No longer needed!!
Status: Breaking News, March 14, 2019-- Through persistence and a series of insightful flashes of wisdom, this problem has been solved by the equipment owner him/her self. Truly inspirational.
Problem #: 01
I built a folded loop 2 meter antenna (pictured below) and I need someone with a good SWR meter (or antenna analyzer) who could advise me on how to get to 1:1 or close before the final soldering is done. I can come to you if needed.
Volunteer Helper: K7MQV Jim
Date Posted: March 8, 2019
Status: March 11, antenna tuned. Problem Solved