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Rocking with the Rockmite


#1

Thanks for all the 40cw contacts over the last few days. The Rockmite really worked well - especially when the two extra ingredients of self-spotting and hungry chasers were included in the mix.

I made around 20 QSOs from each summit. Being crystal controlled and having a “barn-door” rx made the operating more interesting than the average activation.

Great fun.

73

Richard
G3CWI


#2

In reply to G3CWI:
Thanks for the qso Richard, I did try for a foxx-3 to Rockmite qso but the qrm from the local m/w “gold” tx just to strong.
So in the spirit of qrp fired up the Nor-Cal 2n2-40 at 4 watts into the ZS6BKW doublet.
72/73 Mike g0bpu…


#3

In reply to G0BPU:

Ahh, the FOXX3. Not really in the same league as the Rockmite - here is an account of my attempts at using one in 2001.

http://www.qsl.net/g3cwi/themint.html

(quite successful under the circumstances!)

Some well-known calls in the log even then:

PA0HRM, MW0IDX, G0PZO and G0TPH. I worked PA0HRM and G0TPH on the Rockmite this week.

I’m contemplating making a NORCAL 38 Special copy for 18MHz at the moment.

73

Richard
G3CWI


#4

In reply to G3CWI:

Hi Richard, glad to hear the RockMite performed well. I built a RockMite 20 a couple of years ago. I haven’t had a contact with it yet. A self spot might be a good idea :slight_smile:

I was thinking of ordering another RockMite for a different band, but I went to the Rishworth Convention and came home with a QRPme Super Tuna with crystals for 40m and 30m! http://www.qrpme.com/?p=product&id=Spt

I’m not sure I’d be brave enough, but there is space for a trimmer cap to be able to turn the crystal oscillator into a VXO. The rig could then be put bang on 7.032 MHz using a 7.030MHz crystal. I’ve opened of real can of worms (tuna?) with this project as it’s only a transmitter, so I need to source (build) a suitable receiver and work out a switch over system. There is also need for a sidetone (could be combined with a keyer). I determined to operate the rig at least once from a summit!

Another thought of mine was to modify a RockMite to run on 17m. A RockMite relative, the HiMite worked on this band and was quite similar, so it would be a good starting point for values of the inductors etc.

Good luck with your 18MHz endeavours!

(If only someone would buy me a Hendricks BitX17 kit for Christmas!)

73
Colin


#5

In reply to G3CWI:

Congrats, Richard! Oh, I do love this rockmite thingie and will be QRV from DM/SA-053 on Sunday in case everything goes the way I’d like it to.

Hope to hear you then!


#6

In reply to DL4OCE:

Hello Arne

Remember that this weekend is the World-Wide SSB contest, when high power contest stations will operate as far down as 7025 KHz.

Perhaps you can use 10118 KHz, which is where most SOTA CW activations took place this time last year.

73
Roy G4SSH


#7

In reply to G4SSH:

Good point Roy. One of the worst weekends for using a Rockmite. Thanks for the reminder.

73

Richard
G3CWI


#8

And it also looks like congrats are in order? That’s the completion of GW is it not? Pretty fine effort to have activated all summits in 3 of the 5 UK associations - G, GW and GD!

Very well done.

Tom M1EYP


#9

Well done G3CWI Richard.
Please tell me abt power and what battery type you use.
My rockmite I have put in 10.120Mhz xtal, running with a PP 9 volt battery bought in OZ in April 2010. Still possible to use it…But power is redused to under 100mW. This rig is my backup on activation. Saved med in Oz when my KX1 got sick. I got a Ten Tec 1330 on the g-qrp meting and when come home I took it up to my favorite summit for testing. Well as all guess when you try a used rig on a summit for the first time it didn’t work. TX no out only tone in headphones and RX only weak noise. Argg. But my rockmite got me 4qso so I activated the summit. ( No point due to multiple activation this year,)

Want to see who make most qso on a single 9v battery.? I may even set up a price for the winner…

Hope to see ore qso u sn dr om.
73 de LA1KHA Kjell


Learning CW for SOTA
#10

In reply to LA1KHA:

Hi Kjell

I was using a 4Ah 11.6V LiPo battery - rather larger than the Rockmite. A competition to make most QSOs with a 9V battery sounds like fun. …But what sort of 9V battery?

73

Richard
G3CWI


#11

Congratulations Richard on activating all of the SOTA summits in GW.

Jimmy M3EYP


#12

In reply to G3CWI:
I wondered what you were up to wandering in west Wales. Now I Know! Congratulations.
73,
Frank


#13

In reply to G3RMD:

I wondered what you were up to wandering in west Wales

Hello Frank

Thanks for the congratulations. You must have missed my wanderings in South Wales, Mid Wales, North Wales and the Borders!

The event will be celebrated with a beer (or two) at “Read Towers” this evening.

73

Richard
G3CWI


#14

In reply to G3CWI:
Some years ago someone ran a challenge in parallel with the RSGB HF NFD to work as much using AA or D size dry cells, 12V worth but cannot remember the details. Steve GW4ALG entered this with his K2, if I remember correctly from one of the welsh summits (but he never seems to have uploaded the QSOs). He operated around 8 hours before the batteries finally gave up, towards the end running less than 1 watt. Might be interesting to reintroduce this sometime. Of course the K2 has a much lower quiescent current than many other rigs, mine will run for 8-10 hours from a 4AH gel cel at 5W in a contest.

73 Dave G3YMC


#15

In reply to G3YMC:

Some years ago someone ran a challenge in parallel with the RSGB HF
NFD to work as much using AA or D size dry cells, 12V worth but
cannot remember the details.

…that someone was me. It was called the Power Management Challenge and was won by Don G3BJ.

73

Richard
G3CWI


#16

In reply to M1EYP:
Congratulations Richard, an astounding feet!

73
Roger MW0IDX


#17

In reply to MW0IDX:
I believe Richard’s feet have always astounded.
Frank


#18

The event will be celebrated with a beer (or two) at “Read Towers” this evening…

…as well as mine and Jimmy’s achievement of completing the County Armagh region in Northern Ireland, surely an even greater accomplishment than completing the whole of Wales!

Yes, I know it’s only five summits, but if you don’t believe me, check with the GI Association Manager Colin GI0RQK. Only Carrigatuke GI/CA-003 has been done any number of times in the past. The others have been avoided due to notorious car crime and antisocial behaviour in the parking spots, military presence on the summits (relatively recently decommissioned) and very non-trivial access on three of the five. No wonder it’s taken 8 years to see the first region completion for County Armagh!

So while Richard will be politely congratulated this evening, I will be basking in greater glory.

Tom M1EYP


#19

In reply to G3RMD:

So we fete a feat of astounding feet!

(Sorry, couldn’t resist, but well done Richard!)

73

Brian G8ADD


#20

In reply to LA1KHA:

Want to see who make most qso on a single 9v battery.? I may even set
up a price for the winner…

Kjell

Now you have me hooked. I have started making a 30m rig especially for the challenge. It’s a sort of Rockmite but I will be looking at optimising it for low current.

73

Richard
G3CWI (soldering happily)