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Drive CAREFULLY...school is out!
LOBSTERCON2016! is less than 2 weeks away!
This will be the 16th year that I've hosted a Lobstercon weekend at Thomas Point Beach & Campground near Brunswick Maine. The 'official' dates are July 8, 9 & 10 but many Lobsterconners come early and leave late!
Check out the Lobstercon2016! link on the top left of page for full details.
The WORLD'S BIGGEST BUILDATHON was a resounding success!
The room wasn't quite filled to capacity as 248 WBB kits were handed out to the eager builders. I gave a quick rundown of the prep work leading up to the WBB event, set the timer and we were off! As expected, there were many builders who were having difficulties discerning the color bands or reading the tiny lettering on the caps. MANY had read my emails leading up the the WBB so there were lots of needle nose pliers and lighted pocket magifiers spread about the room. Those who missed the emails were usually within easy borrowing distance. About halfway into the build, it became apparent that some hooligan 68pf caps had snuck into the 220pf jar for a little rumble and never made it back to their clubhouse in the 68pf jar so there were a few kits kitted with two 68pf caps and one 220pf short. Unfortunately, I had a EXPRESS mail box sent the previous day with lots of spares for every part in the WBB but it didn't arrive in time to help solve the crisis. Fortunately, I had brought 350+ kits with me so I put a volunteer, Dennis from Kanga UK, on the job of stealing the 220s out of the spare kits to give to those who were 'heavy' on 68s and short a 220. That job went a little slowly until we got a volunteer with GOOD eyesight on the job and 220pf caps started flying out of the corner of the room. As WBB kits were completed and tested, we 'borrowed' those 220 caps to get the others built. There was pandimonium about but we managed to power through the problem and continue the builds. We did have 2 casualties from the tiny letering and parts but 246 WBB kits were completed, tested and declared working. So in 1 hour and 10 minutes, we has 246 of 248 WBB kits build, tested and declared working transmitters! I think that I can call that a success.....full report
I have TWO new kits: the TT2 40th Anniversary issue and the Sea Sprite . I also have a NEW kit building tool: A BRASS SET
The TT2 40th Anniversary issue is an updated version of the TT2 which meets current FCC regulations for harmonic suppression. It is a economical design yet still has lots of 'play value' and is designed so even new hands at soldering should have no problems completing the kit.
The Sea Sprite is a merging of the EZ Build Two Tinned Tunas concept with the Lil' Squall design. I took the Lil' Squall design, simplified it for single band operation and then laid it out in the 'normal' sized tuna can thereby having the added room for BIG pads, HEAVY traces and WIDE spacing making it as near 'builder proof' as the EZB Two Tinned Tunas kit has been! I also removed the band module hardware, making it single band operation, and changed the filter from a low pass to band pass filter. This should help with interference generated by SW broadcasters hanging around the 40m and 20m amateur radio bands. Also, it will be sold without the can for further savings to QRP builders.
Snack on some Dole pineapple (approx. 75 cents) while building either kit and you will have the perfect can for mounting the board when you have completed construction.
A BRASS SETcontains 4 small solid brass clamps which are easily installed along the edges of a circuit board under construction. The nifty little clamps then serve as a set of legs to keep the board stable while soldering the leads on the underneath side.
I have a special deal for the month of June, all three of the new items will be shipped FREE anywhere in the world! Check out the HOT LINKS for these 3 items at the upper left on my home page.
As of June 28, 2016...
Back order status: Only 5 back orders in my binder dating all the way back to last Sunday! I anticipate that all orders will go out the door tomorrow.
MePad and MeSquares panels are STILL in stock. Grayson Evans did a Thermotron seminar right before the WBB. MANY of his Powerpoint images showed a thermotron mounted to a MeTubes pad so he created a 'run' on MeTubes panels during Vendor night. I sold every panel I had...BUT I did mange to find a couple of panels in my shop cleanup campaign last week! Toroid EZ tools and SBSS solder bots are back on the shelf now as are the latest builder's tool: "A Brass Set" .