QRP with an Elecraft KX1 and a Long Wire Antenna

Having gone 100% QRP, I have decided to operate in the true spirit of doing more with less. That means all my radio work takes place on my deck, using battery power and as basic set up as possible.

And boy, am I having fun.

Since making the switch to QRP I have been operating on Tuesday nights with the CW Operator’s Club net on 7.028 MHz. My equipment so far has been the KX1 feeding 3W into a long wire antenna that I string up along the railings of my deck at my QTH.

The long wire antenna is attached to the deck railing and works surprisingly well.

The long wire antenna is attached to the deck railing and works surprisingly well.

The deck is up on the second floor of my house facing SE. I use a BLT Tuner to take care of tuning the antenna, a Whiterook paddle and a 2 Ah rechargeable battery.

My operating position on my deck. From left: battery, KX1 with Whiterook paddle connected, BLT tuner.

My operating position on my deck. From left: battery, KX1 with Whiterook paddle connected, BLT tuner.

I have no trouble making good contact with operators in Sydney and Canberra and have worked into Melbourne too with this setup. But I need to maximise efficiency so have embarked on an upgrade. I have ordered an internal antenna tuning unit and the plug-in paddle as well as a Buddistick vertical antenna¬†from Elecraft. That should arrive this week. I expect better performance once I’ve had a chance to build and install these pieces of gear.

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6 thoughts on “QRP with an Elecraft KX1 and a Long Wire Antenna

  1. Very nice shots of the day and I did have a KX1 and it was my first kit build. I too had a plug in key with the KX1 as the Elecraft paddle was not the best for me. Very nice reading your post.
    Mike

    • Mike, I have just built the paddle and first impressions are that it’s not the greatest performer. But I still need to use in in a QSO, so will reserve judgement until then. Fun to build, though.

  2. I think you always liked QRP and as you enjoy building kits, so it adds to the fun. Whilst I still have my IC703, I am using the old FT817 these days. I have been playing around with paddles and the Vibroplex is still my favorite, I enjoy using the small Palm mini paddle. If you can get your hands on the old New Zealand made Galbraith paddle, they are really great. No longer made, but they do have a nice feel. Good luck with QRP and hope to work you again soon.

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