Nixa ARC HF Station on the air

This week, members of the Nixa ARC installed the club's new HF radio station. The radio station, consisting of a Yaesu FT-950 for HF-6m SSB activity, and a Yaesu FT-8900 for 6m, 2m and 70cm FM, is housed at the Nixa Fire Department General HQ inside their concrete walled backup 911 center, which is also the backup EOC for Christian County. The Iota DLS-55 12 vdc power supply was also installed and the Tigertronics SignaLink USB was also unpacked and set at the station awaiting the PC for logging and digital operation.

A 24' Penninger mast was installed on a 30' telephone pole on the Northwest corner of the Fire Department placing the tip at 50' AGL. Atop the mast is the Comet GP-15 for 6m, 2m and 70cm FM. Initial tests allowed us to key every 2m repeater in Southwest Missouri including the 146.955 in Laurie. We also talked to a station on the Mansfield machine while he was en route to work in Lebanon. While testing 6-meters, we were able to work the Louisburg, KS 6m machine. Just below the Comet GP-15 is the HF wire antenna, an Alpha Delta DX-LB+ for 10m through 160m HF. One end is tied off to the Fire Department's Rohn HDBX-48 tower at the 34' mark and the other end to another telephone pole at 34'. And, below the HF antenna on the center support is a pair of KU4AB SQ-50 Squalo antennas for 6m SSB. Each of the antennas has 200' of Andrew FSJ4-50B 1/2" superflex and 40' of Belden 9913 low-loss, more flexible cable at each end to connect to the radios and antennas. All tolled, we used a total of 600' of 1/2" superflex and 240' of Belden 9913 coax. The feedlines have Polyphasers installed and grounding kits, all attached to the fire department's Harger ground bar installed for their tower. Wiremold was also installed along the walls to hide the coax cable. The Wiremold installed is large enough to support about 6 more runs of coax for any future expansion.

We would like to thank the following people who took time off work and out of their day to help with the install, which took 3 days to complete. Chris Cochran, KB0WZC; Jeremy Tannehill, KC0UJZ; Jeff Kerr, Kc0VGC; James Adkins, KB0NHX; Jim Adkins, KC0IYI; Richard Doucey, KD0HGY; Kent Doucey, N0IRM, and Gary Doucey, N0IRN.

We received several positive comments from the firemen and the Fire Chief commenting on how professional our install looks. The station should be something for all the members to not only enjoy using and but also be proud of for years to come. Once the station PC for logging and digital operations is installed and the Internet obtained for the PC, we will even be able to operate the station remotely! Future upgrades planned are installation of Heil microphone equipment for SSB operations and a Begali CW keyer for the club's CW enthusiasts.

We would like to thank the following businesses and organizations for supporting the project both financially and by supplying equipment for the station:

Nixa Community Foundation
Nixa Fire Department
ARRL Foundation
Handyman Rentals
Comet / NCG
Heil Sound

A full update on the HF station will be given, along with a tour of the station, at the July 2009 Nixa ARC club meeting.