HAM CON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

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DaveK
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HAM CON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

#1

Post by DaveK » Mon Aug 24, 2015 9:57 am

The annual Ham Convention returns to SoCal on September 11-13, 2015, in Torrance (http://www.hamconinc.org/ .) For three days (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, you'll get a chance to see the newest equipment, software,and antennas, with a chance to talk to the manufacturers. Our friends, Chip Margelli, K7JA and Gordon West, WB6NOA, will be guest speakers at the banquet on Saturday evening. The full schedule can be found here: http://www.hamconinc.org/conventionschedule.php

There will be tech presentations on all three days including, HF Antenna Design, Amateur Radio Emergency Data Network, Reporting Emergencies, APRS & D-Star, Transmitter Hunting, The Value of Echolink in Amateur Radio, RFI Solutions, Antenna Construction, Ham Radio Deluxe Logging & Rig Control Software, and much more. See the full schedule here: http://www.hamconinc.org/tech-talk-spkrs-schedule.php .

Who's going?
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Re: HAM CON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

#2

Post by cruiserlarry » Mon Aug 24, 2015 11:44 pm

I'm definitely interested in going for at least one day (Sat or Sun, can't get out of work on Fri)...so let me know when you are planning on attending, and I'll start working on my schedule :mrgreen:
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Re: HAM CON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

#3

Post by DaveK » Tue Aug 25, 2015 10:41 pm

Larry

Most likely Saturday, but other family activities may make Sunday better. I'll know more soon.
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Re: 2015 HAMCON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

#4

Post by cruiserlarry » Thu Sep 10, 2015 1:01 am

Looks like DaveK and I will be making our way down to the ARRL 2015 HamCon in Torrance, CA on Sunday, Sept 13 (Neither of us are available on Fri or Sat)

Anyone else interested in joining us at the event ??? Looks like there will be a mix of vendors with ham radio-related stuff on display (an I assume for sale, too). Additionally, there are several scheduled talks on each of the 3 days by experts in their fields for those interested in them.

The 2015 HamCom convention will be held at the Torrance Marriott South Bay, 3635 Fashion Way, Torrance, CA 90503

Talk-in freq is 146.520 (Nat'l Call Freq for 2M) and the TRW / Redondo Beach wide-coverage repeater should work well nearby too (145.320- 114.8 PL)
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Re: HAM CON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

#5

Post by KK6GFF » Mon Sep 14, 2015 5:28 pm

I went to the convention on Saturday. It was fun to see Gordon West, he talks just like in his CD's!

It was also great to see the Elecrafts, especially after hearing Don on the web talking about it. I'm all fired up to get an HF radio. Not sure if I'll go for a 857D or the KX3. The KX3 is great but it needs the amplifier in order to get 100 watts, and all together it comes to be 12 or $1300 more than the 857D. I'll probably go for a 857D with a Little Tarheel.

Roger
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Re: HAM CON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

#6

Post by DaveK » Mon Sep 14, 2015 6:08 pm

Roger

With the disappearance of the ICOM 7000, (and the Icom 706), the only player left in the field* of a truly mobile HF/VHF/UHF radio is the Yaesu 857D. Some may argue that the ICOM 7100 is still a player, but I'll leave that up to the taste of the individual. I used the 7100 at Field Day this year and was thoroughly impressed to the point that I want one, but not for mobile use.

Yaesu radios have a well earned reputation for reliability, ruggedness and value and I think your choice of the 857D is a good one, combined with the Tar Heel antenna. My only criticism of the 857 is that the screen is very small and reading it while mobile, even with good eyes, is tough. If my IC7000 bites the dust, I am off to HRO for an 857D (and maybe a new set of reading glasses).



* I have limited "my" field to the top three players, Yaesu, Kenwood and Icom.
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Re: HAM CON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

#7

Post by cruiserlarry » Tue Sep 15, 2015 12:18 am

Roger -

I'm in agreement with Dave - the Yaesu FT857D is an amazing compact mobile VHF/UHF/HF radio. I've had one in my FJ for 6 years without issue, and made contacts from Japan to Australia, to Europe with the matching Yaesu ATAS-120A screwdriver antenna. While the Tarheel is a bit more impressive, spec-wise, the ATAS antenna can be automatically tuned for different bands by pushing a button on the FT857D - it sends the signal through the coax to move the antenna up or down.

I also have the Icom IC7100, which is an amazing VHF / UHF / HF / D-Star radio, with a backlit touchscreen which makes everything, from frequency / band chances to filter adjustments a snap, day or night. During night use on field day, the screen is very easy to read, from no light to bright sunlight, and the controls are intuitive. Most importantly, the receiver is very good (close to my IC7700 at home), and the DSP and filter systems work very well, too. The control unit is an unusual angled design (actually great when on a flat surface, such as a table or desk), but it can be mounted mobile as well.

The Elekraft KX3 is a beautiful QRP radio, but it seems bulky for mobile installation, especially if you add their 100 amplifier to the mix. Cables connect to the sides of the head unit, which can become a bit unruly in a vehicle, IMO. And the cost is definitely higher than the Yaesu or Icom, if you factor in the amp.

Whatever you choose, I know you'll find HF to be a lot of fun - we'll probably have several mobile HF systems set up at BorregoFest, so if you are joining us in the desert, you can give them a try :mrgreen:
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Re: HAM CON - Torrance, CA - September 11-13, 2015

#8

Post by KK6GFF » Tue Sep 15, 2015 7:31 am

Thank you, Dave and Larry!

Great advice, I'll go with the FT-857D. Last night I saw a Little Tarheel II used at HRO so I ordered it, it comes with the additional 56" wip. I'll build my HF rig slowly. Got the antenna!

I heard that just like the ATAS, when combined with a Turbo Tuner, the Tarheel can be tuned with just a button push. At the Ham Con I spoke with the Yaesu representative and he said that the Tarheel is a better antenna, a little pricier, so since I mainly want the HF rig to make contacts with Barcelona, I thought investing in a good antenna would be worth.

Larry, thanks so much for the offer to try different HF rigs at Borrego Fest, today I still don't know if I'll be able to make it because of work, but if I can make it it'll be exciting to try them.

Roger
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