I am on vacation this week so operating is a bit different. I am using the family car and for the time I have opted not to use the masts to set up antennas. This evening I hung the twenty meter folded dipole between the car and the tower at the ham club house and had a nice contact in San Antonio, Texas. I have begun repackaging all the needed items for this kind of operation.
My next time out I strung the antenna between the tower and a tree so the antenna was maybe twenty feet off the ground. Two contacts were worked, Lithuania and North Carolina. All three contacts were made with the Yaesu FT-897D, one hundred watts for the first and seventy five watts for the last two. I have been working on the mental process to make a CW contact. The paddle is wired and ready. It is encouraging in that I have heard some nice slow CW even on twenty meters.
A friend found that we can avoid using Skype with Ham Radio Deluxe. He has a new TS-590 from Kenwood. This is a radio that I plan to buy eventually. The control software that you can download from Kenwood for this radio has voice over IP capability. The nice part is that like Skype it is merely addressing the sound card. The brand radio you use is not important. Just start up HRD and the Kenwood software and enjoy. Thank you Kenwood.
Kenwood is still the company I look to for a good solid desktop radio. Kenwood did not have what I was looking for when it came to portable and low power operation. This is why I have an Icom 703+ and a Yaesu 897D. They are great radios, but I am looking forward to having a real base station again in a few years and Kenwood will take the center of the desk.
By the way, HRD has been sold to three ham operators who live in the US. If you have not downloaded a copy it might be a good idea.