Welcome to the Home Page of Chuck Adams, K7QO

This page updated May 24, 2015.

Chinese Super Rock Mite Build

This is a side project caused by teaching the morse code class.

May 18, 2015. Finished the build a day ago and checked out the rig. It is a brick. Worthless IMHO. No auto detection of straight key as was advertised or shown in spec sheet. No iambic mode keying. Programmer obviously is not a CW operator or may not even be a ham. Bummer.

  • Super Rock Mite Build page. Rock Mite for $24.10 US.

    QRPMe Rock Mite Build

    This is a second build in search of a code practice oscillator and xcvr for a CW course.

  • QRPMe Rock Mite Build page. Rock Mite for $50.00 US.

    K7QO Code Course Live for TBARC

    I started May 6, 2015 teaching my code course live to 22 ham radio operators interested in learning the code. These notes and course material online to help them and any one else interested in learning the code. I will also have corrections to materials here as I find them or the students point out the errors of my ways.

    Here is the CD in ISO format for those that are online. I gave out free discs at the start of the course. BTW. The Thunderbird Amateur Radio Club is the sponsor of this course. Andy, K3WYC, has done all the hard work of getting a room at the John C. Lincoln Hospital complex and I sincerely appreciate his work, both for this course and one previously at the beginning of 2014.

  • K7QO Code Course. CD in ISO format.

    Lecture 1 -- May 6, 2015

  • Lecture One Slides

    The sound files all end with three tones at a lower frequency. This is so you can pause the MP3 player to check your work, take a break or to get ready for the next sequence of code sounds.

    The first goal is to memorize the entire alphabet within one week. I have the breakdown here different from the slides to make it slightly easier and start you out with about 45 mins per day. Try to do this in one session early in the day, if possible. Take a nap after the lesson. You may feel exhausted. :-)

    The characters are sent at 17WPM and the spacing is at 5WPM. Speed is not important here. Memorizing the sounds is. The tone is at 680 Hz to approximate the 'sweet spot' on most transceivers. I prefer a higher tone, especially at higher speeds, which I will explain later in the course. When listening to code on the air, attempt to vary the tone as much as possible to get used to having to carry on a QSO due to factors such as a contest or nearby station(s) that force you to listen to a different pitch.

    Day 1.                  Day 2.                  Day 3.                 Day 4.                 Day 5.                 Day 6.
      001.mp3  a              009.mp3  a-f test       018.mp3  a-l test      027.mp3  a-r test      036.mp3  a-x test      040.mp3  two letter words
      002.mp3  b              010.mp3  g              019.mp3  m             028.mp3  s             037.mp3  y             040.mp3  two letter words
      003.mp3  a-b test       011.mp3  h              020.mp3  n             029.mp3  t             038.mp3  z             041.mp3  three letter words
      004.mp3  c              012.mp3  a-h test       021.mp3  a-n test      030.mp3  a-t test      039.mp3  a-z test      041.mp3  three letter words
      005.mp3  d              013.mp3  i              022.mp3  o             031.mp3  u             006.mp3  a-d test      042.mp3  three letter words
      006.mp3  a-d test       014.mp3  j              023.mp3  p             032.mp3  v             012.mp3  a-h test      042.mp3  three letter words
      007.mp3  e              015.mp3  a-j test       024.mp3  a-p test      033.mp3  a-v test      018.mp3  a-l test
      008.mp3  f              016.mp3  k              025.mp3  q             034.mp3  w             024.mp3  a-p test
      009.mp3  a-f test       017.mp3  l              026.mp3  r             035.mp3  x             033.mp3  a-v test
                              018.mp3  a-l test       027.mp3  a-r test      036.mp3  a-x test      039.mp3  a-z test

    Here is an experiment for you to try. You should have the entire alphabet memorized. Here are four audio files in MP3 format containing the alphabet (in order) at different character speeds, but the spacing is at 5WPM. This gives you more than a second between the characters to write each down as you hear it. You should be able to hear each character clearly, even at the 35WPM speed.

  • Alphabet at 17WPM. May 13, 2015.
  • Alphabet at 20WPM. May 13, 2015.
  • Alphabet at 25WPM. May 13, 2015.
  • Alphabet at 30WPM. May 13, 2015.

    Lecture 2 -- May 13, 2015

  • Lecture Two Slides

    At the end of the lecture I was asked about the end of each sound file. With MP3 players, because they are usually set up to immediately go to the next sound file, I put the letter 'O' at 5WPM character speed and a lower tone to mark the 'end of file'. This to give you an audio indicator of when the file is done so that you can either go on to the next file or stop the player.

    Here are links to web sites mentioned in lecture and of interest to ham radio operators.

  • Reverse Beacon Network. May 13, 2015. Find out band propagation conditions.
  • Reverse Beacon Network Map Page. May 13, 2015. Find out band propagation conditions.
  • Propagation Prediction by Band. May 13, 2015. Time scale for band conditions between two points on the globe..

    Here is the link to the video shown of a home brew receiver built muppet style by W1DN. and also a couple other of his fantastic work.

  • W1DN receiver demo. May 14, 2015.
  • W1DN receiver demo. May 14, 2015.
  • W1DN receiver demo. May 14, 2015.

    Lecture 3 -- May 20, 2015

  • Lecture Three Slides

  • Training Film from the Navy for Sending
  • Training Film from the Army for Sending

  • K7QO Dual Lever Paddle Sending Demo
  • FISTS.ORG CW Organization.

  • Rufz Home Page.

  • Go to the above web page.
  • On left hand side clock on Download.
  • Follow instructions to download and install.
  • Bring up program, i.e. run the program.
  • Use the Mode pull-down menu and select Trainer mode.
  • Then go down the same pull-down menu and select Selection.
  • Pick all the letters. Set for 1 character at a time. Exit menu.
  • Click on start.

    Program will ask for your call letters and then the speed. Start with 85CPM (17WPM).

  • K7QO's Lab Notebook. April 9, 2015.
  • TenTec Paragon 585 Refurb Project. April 9, 2015.
  • K7QO Crystal Test Fixture. April 9, 2015.
  • Rigol 1054z Page. April 9, 2015.
  • K7QO Videos for YouTube. April 9, 2015.

    Material from some time ago that refuses to die on the Internet.....

  • K7QO Manhattan Construction Techniques -- 2008 An early version writeup that was copied and stored by some one.
  • K7QO Manhattan Construction Techniques Rex Harper, W1REX, has copy that I gave him some time ago.
  • Advanced Manhattan Construction Techniques Copy of yet another old paper of mine.

    K7QO 40-30-20m single band transceiver build

    Here is a transceiver I am working on for 40, 30 and 20m. The first prototypes are on a 4"x6" muppet board. Copper layer is 2oz and the layout is not compact. This is a prototype for another structure to be developed.

    Because the board is large and just barely goes through the BadgeMate laminator, the large area did not get heated uniformly. It presses the limit of the laminator, so I have to experiment on the next two boards on how to heat it enough to attach the toner to the surface better. The board is good to go for the build, it just has a mottled look. If the board had been 0.5oz material, there would be pinholes in the ground plane and traces, what I call a 'star field effect' because when you hold the board up to the light you can see a black background with points of light resembling stars.

    Left click on images to get the full sized image for close examination.

    Photo 1
    Photo 2
    Photo 3
    Photo 4

    Photo 1 is the board with audio section lower left and front panel on the left with 8V regulator to the right side.

    Photo 2 is front panel using red FR-4 board material from abcfab on ebay.

    Photo 3 is back side of front panel.

    Photo 4 is showing addition of back panel and PIC keyer to the upper right board section.

    I am building, powering up and checking sections as I go. The keyer allows me to check the audio amp and to adjust the keyer tone into the audio section to a very quite level that I like. Iambic mode B for me with memory and beacon modes.

    Photo 5
    Photo 6
    Photo 7

    Photo 5 showing audio section up close.

    Photo 6 showing addition of mixer, NE602A.

    Photo 7 addition of IF crystal filter.

    Small Wonder Labs Building Tutorials

    OK, while looking through 4TB of work over the decades, here are three manuals for the Small Wonder Labs transceiver. SWL is no longer in business, but the kits are still around unbuilt and there are several groups online that are going to bring back the kits for tutorials and one for reviving the kit(s). There are no guarantees that these will match those exactly until after some one compares the instructions for the new versions, but they should be very close.

  • SWL40+ circa 2008. March 30, 2015.
  • SWL40+ circa 2011. March 30, 2015.
  • SWL30+ for 30 meters. March 30, 2015.

    The Famous K7QO Code Course

    Here is the K7QO Code Course 3.0 in ISO format. Enjoy. Feel free to use and give away. Teach a class and make me proud. As of Jan 2015, more than 16,000 copies have been given away worldwide.

  • K7QO Code Course. Back online March 6, 2015.

    WWV Receiver Project

    While looking at youtube videos, I ran across the following, which I thought was interesting.

  • WWV Receiver Video. Youtube video from Aaron Parks showing WWV receiver.

    I thought the circuit was intersting and wanted to experiment with it. Here is a muppet layout that I did. It works, but with some tweeking. I need to do some more work on it, especially adding some more ferrite beads to the base of the BJTs. More to follow as time permits.

    Left click on images to get the full sized image for close examination.

    Photo 1
    Photo 2
    Photo 3
    Photo 4

    You will notice the straight blue wires in several places. These were connections I purposely put in the layout to allow the ground plane in several regions to connect directly. The wire is solid #24 wire that I get from ethernet cable salvaged for the wire to be used as jumpers on solderless breadboard and other projects needing wire connections.

    K7QO AVR Programmer Muppet Shield

    I am about to explore using Si5351a DDS chips for use in VFO components of transceivers. I needed a uP to control the chip and since a lot of the code has already been written using the Arduino and the Atmel328P microchip, I needed a way to program the chip. Not wanting to spend the money on a programmer I found the following method using an Arduino as the programmer.

  • AVR Programmer Using Arduino.

    I laid out the follwoing board to do the programming of the 328P chip.

    Photo 1
    Photo 2
    Photo 3
    Photo 4
    Photo 5
    Photo 6

    What killed me time was trying to use the board with a UNO. Won't work. Has to be a later baord, so wound up uing a Due. Then things worked just fine. Learn something new every day. Now I can program a 328P uP as a standalone to work on a muppet layout for the Si5351a and the chip working together.

    Crystal Sorting Demonstration

    I just received in the mail 200 9MHz crystals. I got these to standardize on 9MHz IF frequency for the next few transceiver and receiver projects. 9MHz is good enough for a lot of commercial manufacturers, both past and present, so I want to experiment and gain some skill in using the frequency.

    The first order of business is to sort the crystals in order to match them, As I showed in my lab notebook, I can match them first with a crystal oscillator and then measure the parameters afterwards. It saves a boat load of work. IMHO.

    The photos below show the bag of crystals, the setup and then the process of measureing the resonant frequency of each crystal and its activity level (the voltage output from the crystal oscillator). The fixture I use is a G3UUR crystal fixture that I have in the files section of the qrp-tech group at yahoogroups.com. I use notebook paper to write down the results, enter the data into the computer with just the freq and voltage output level. I then use vi, the favorite text editor in the linux world to number the lines. I do a plot using gnuplot, but as you can see from the plot, that shows you that the freq range is about 400 Hz and the activity level varies a bit.

    I do a sort on the frequency, sort -k 2 for the command. Then, by looking at the groupings of frequencies, I can find 4 or 5 crystals that are within the required frequency spread for a specific IF filter topology. Because the crystal number is with each data point, I can find the crystal easily in the vector board that I placed them in order on. Also note. I did not have to mark the crystals with a sharpie or other marker. And, if I need too, I can put the crystals into a flat styrofoam sheet for long term storage and put the data sheets with them for retrieval.ne

    Left click on each image you want to see full size.

    Photo 1
    Photo 2
    Photo 3
    Photo 4
    Photo 5
    Photo 6

    Here is a plot of the data showing frequency and activity for each of the 100 crystals. The frequency is 8,998,000 MHz plus the frequency of the data point, ie 500Hz whould be 8,998,400 MHz.

  • PDF file with plot of crystal data. April 14, 2015.

    Here are six crystals from the sorted data that are separated by 1Hz. If I were building a 4 crystal IF filter, I would pick crystals numbered 12, 27, 02 and 41 because they have the highest activity level and will have the lowest ESR value of the six. Guaranteed.

    44  8998317 0.194
    12  8998317 0.200
    27  8998317 0.203
    14  8998318 0.143
    02  8998318 0.201
    41  8998318 0.205

    My email address is the usual hiding from Internet bots.

    chuck dot adams dot k7qo at gmail dot com

    100 Books to Read Before You Die

    Having just watched 'The Equalizer' movie, I thought it interesting to have a list of 100 books that one should read before dying. I, like every one else, got on the Web and googled for the list. It seems that there is not a list that every one can agree on. No surprise there. So, I just picked one and here it is:

    Please note. Although I have read many of these books previously, either as class assignments or just personal interest, I am rereading these books in their entirety. No shortcuts are being taken. No Cliff Notes and no movies of the book.

  • The Time Machine by H.G. Wells     March 11, 2015
  • Moby Dick by Herman Melville       March 17, 2015
  • The Plague by Albert Camus         March 25, 2015
  • Hamlet by Shakespeare               March 28, 2015
  • The Complete Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Waterson     April 2, 2015
  • Gilgamesh, Anonymous
  • Analects, by Confucius
  • The Iliad, by Homer
  • The Odyssey, by Homer
  • The History of the Peloponnesian War, by Thucydides
  • Aesop’s Fables
  • Oedipus, Antigone, and Oedipus at Colonus, by Sophocles
  • The Orestia, by Aeschylus
  • The Republic, by Plato
  • The Nicomachean Ethics, by Aristotle
  • Histories of Herodotus
  • Hortensius, by Cicero
  • The Aeneid, by Virgil
  • The Metamorphoses, by Ovid
  • The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius
  • The Confessions of St. Augustine
  • The Consolation of Philosophy, by Boethius
  • On Loving God, by Bernard of Clairvaux
  • The Mind’s Road to God, by Bonaventure
  • Didascalicon, by Hugh of St. Victor
  • The Summa Theologica (selections are okay), by Aquinas
  • Beowulf, Anonymous
  • The Canterbury Tales, by Geoffrey Chaucer
  • Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, by the Pearl Poet
  • The Cloud of Unknowing, Anonymous
  • The Divine Comedy, by Dante Alighieri
  • The Fairie Queen, by Edmund Spencer
  • The Prince, by Niccolo Machiavelli
  • Utopia, by Thomas More
  • Four Great Tragedies (Othello, Macbeth, Hamlet, & Lear), by Shakespeare
  • Henriad Tetrology (Richard II, 1-2 Henry IV, & Henry V), by Shakespeare
  • Four Great Comedies (Merchant of Venice, Much Ado about Nothing, Twelfth Night, & The Tempest), by Shakespeare
  • Institutes of the Christian Religion, by John Calvin
  • The Temple, by George Herbert
  • Paradise Lost, by John Milton
  • Pilgrim’s Progress, by John Bunyan
  • Tartuffe, by Jean-Baptiste Poquelin Moliere
  • Groundwork of a Metaphysic of Morals, by Immanuel Kant
  • Pensees, by Blaise Pascal
  • Gulliver’s Travels, by Jonathan Swift
  • Essay on Man, by Alexander Pope
  • Candide, by Voltaire
  • Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe
  • The Federalist Papers, by various authors
  • The Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution
  • The Wealth of Nations, by Adam Smith
  • Lyrical Ballads (2nd ed.), by Wordsworth and Coleridge
  • Vindication of the Rights of Woman, by Mary Wollstonecraft
  • A Practical View of Christianity, by William Wilberforce
  • Faust, by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  • Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
  • Grimm’s Fairy Tales
  • Democracy in America, by Alexis de Tocqueville
  • The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
  • Leaves of Grass, by Walt Whitman
  • Walden, by Henry David Thoreau
  • Middlemarch, by George Eliot
  • Barchester Towers, by Anthony Trollope
  • Narrative of the Life of Fred D., an American Slave, by Frederick Douglass
  • In Memoriam, by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
  • The Origin of Species, by Charles Darwin
  • Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque, by Edgar Allan Poe
  • Bleak House, by Charles Dickens
  • Unspoken Sermons, by George MacDonald
  • The Idea of a University, by John Henry Newman
  • The Brothers Karamazov, by Fydor Dostoyevsky
  • Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy
  • Madame Bovary, by Gustave Flaubert
  • Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo
  • Tess of the D’Urbervilles, by Thomas Hardy
  • The Complete Sherlock Holmes, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Genealogy of Morals, by Friedrich Nietzsche
  • The Communist Manifesto, by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engles
  • The Cherry Orchard, by Anton Chekhov
  • Rerum Novarum, by Pope Leo XIII
  • Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad
  • Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man, by James Joyce
  • Howards End, by E.M. Forster
  • Civilization and Its Discontents, by Sigmund Freud
  • Orthodoxy, by G. K. Chesterton
  • Fear and Trembling, by Soren Kierkegaard
  • Four Quartets, by T. S. Eliot
  • Brideshead Revisited, by Evelyn Waugh
  • Waiting for Godot – Samuel Beckett
  • Deus Caritas Est, by Pope John Paul II
  • The Lord of the Rings, by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Death of a Salesman, by Arthur Miller
  • The Cost of Discipleship, by Dietrich Bonhoeffer
  • The Chronicles of Narnia, by C. S. Lewis
  • One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • 1984, by George Orwell
  • Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
  • The Sound and the Fury, by William Faulkner
  • Silence, by Endo Shusaku
  • One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, by Alexander Solzhenitsyn
  • Complete Short Stories, by Flannery O’Connor

    I got the list from the web site http://tinyurl.com/mjzbvsl