Mr. Burton authored the following post; I will be contributing in a strictly comment-y fashion. My comments are in italics.
The Radio PAL group is one step closer to having a permanent station on the LFCC campus. Today, with the help of Phil from the Buildings and Ground staff of LFCC, Mr. Burton, Mr. Hess, and Mr. Dietrich scaled the perilous (a.k.a. sketchy) ladder to the summit of the science building in Middletown. Okay, Mr. Burton called it a sketchy ladder, but let’s go the photographic evidence, here.
Am I incorrect in pointing out that getting to climb a ladder like that in order to access a school building roof is every 12-year-old boy’s fantasy? Mr. Hess, Mr. Dietrich, and Mr. Burton all ran out of this office with glee to “go play on the roof” during this process. We love our jobs here at MVGS.
After negotiating the well-placed patch awaiting at the top of the ladder, the crew carefully assembled and raised the Cushcraft MA6V multi-band HF antenna. We were thankful to have Mr. Hess’s super-human strength to manhandle the approximately 20 feet of aluminum and galvanized steel and (using only testosterone) convince that antenna to make the top of the building its new home.
After securing the antenna, the crew carefully fed feedline up to the antenna from the utility closet below. Mr. Burton particularly enjoyed having permission to bust a hole in the wall leading into the closet for the feedline to exit. He has the science teacher’s love of breaking things, it’s true. With the brunt of the work behind us, all that is left is to pull the feedline 100 feet to the physics room and put the finishing touches on the new KM4VV station. With the roof work mostly completed, student members of the PAL group will now get to enjoy participating in the final steps of assembling our station.
We hope to be on the air before our next PAL group meeting.
Updated: First Contact (3/2/2011) Okay, it’s possible Mr. Burton sent me these posts quite some time ago, but I have…stuff to do. I’m not a blog-posting machine!
The Radio PAL group is on the air! Thanks to the efforts of Mr. Dietrich and Mr. Hess, Mr. Burton was able to make a quick contact with VE7BQM, an amateur radio operator located in Coquitlam, British Columbia. Thanks to the efforts of moi, you all get to read about it. Ahem.
The contact was made on the 20 meter band (14.200 MHz) at 1:45pm on March 3, 2011 under Mr. Burton;s call sign (KF4LAA). This first contact for our new HF radio and antenna system was made with relative ease, and our station received a 5 over 9 signal report from VE7BQM which indicates our signal was having no problem traversing the continent. This was an exciting day and means the KM4VV PAL group will begin to officially operate on the HF bands at our next meeting. Yay, Radio PAL Group!