RE: More Progress

More Progress

Well no, my current caregivers do not have enough general
knowledge to call anyone on my behalf. Besides, we should probably stay within the
fence for legal reasons, and I already know what’s under my yard. The only
underground hazard is 4800 volts running three feet inside the west fence parallel
to it and three feet down. It’s marked by the transformer in the yard. Where
we’re actually talking about digging, along the back fence away from the west
end where power and telephone are, is clear to China.

 

You need to tell me what sort of pipe stock is needed and let’s
see what I can do. This would be a cinch if I still worked for Shell, because I
had access to stock out the wazoo. Still, let’s see what I can find. I know
one thing that my caregiver, Pete, can do when we get to that point is dig the hole.
He’s an old ranch-hand so he should be able to dig post-holes in a deep sleep.

 

 

From: Larry Burke
[mailto:wi5a@sbcglobal.net]
Sent: Saturday, August 18, 2007 11:39 AM
To: ‘Scott Royall’
Subject: More Progress

 

 

Scott……

I took
advantage of the lack of precipitation and lull in garden work to tune up the
Butternut. I used a minimal ground system since that is what you will
have… just tied it into the wire that bonds my station ground to the
service entrance ground. Actually it has about nine ground rods and 130 ft of
#2 AWG wire, so it’s not really minimal… but it’s not a particularly good
RF counterpoise either. I was able to get an SWR dip at 3870 and a good chunk
of the General 40m SSB sub-band. Due to its small size, the useable bandwidth
on 80m is small. It’s a little better on 40, but it doesn’t cover the whole
band. We’ll get ‘er going for the SSB end though. And it shouldn’t need a
tuner.

The next
issue is how to mount it. Butternut only provides about 15 inches of aluminum
tubing to place into the dirt with a stern warning not to hammer it in. These
guys have obviously never put up an antenna in Texas. For the tuneup today I
was able to push it into the mud, but it wouldn’t have stayed vertical if there
had been a breeze. I need to scrounge up something like a small piece of chain
link fence rail into which I may be able to slip the Butternut. I may have one
in my junk pile, but it’s surrounded by water right now.

Before I go
pounding in a support and a ground rod, someone needs to call Texas One Call
(the utility locator service). It’s free, but you need to give them 48 hr
notice. They will come out and mark where the gas, electricity and phone lines
are. Probably will be multiple visits as I think each utility sends their own
rep. Can your caretaker call them? The number is 800-545-6005. I’d hate to hit
something.

All that
remains now is pulling together some miscellaneous items like ground clamps, a
ground rod, coax and connectors, etc….. All of which I have laying around
the house. If the weather and my schedule cooperate I should be able to come
back to your place sometime in the coming week. If it’s any consolation, you
will likely have a working antenna before I do! So much to do around after
moving into a new place that it seems to take forever.

 

Larry
Burke 

Brazoria
County Texas

 

 

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