ARNSW Trash and Treasure

Peter VK2TPM was kind enough to supply me transport to the Dural ARNSW site once again. Turn out was pretty good, not as large as the mini Field Day, but all the usual suspects made it along and a few new faces too.

Trash and Treasure Overview

Lunch was provided at mates rates. Not too many onions left when I got to the BBQ, I suspect I got the last of them, but the snag and sauce was a great brunch.


The always present boot-load junk-pile had some new keyboards from some kind of toy, much better than the membrane keyboards I picked up last time (and still haven't used)... I left them alone, having no immediate use and figuring I'll see them again (and again, and again) in the future.

Junk Pile

I didn't notice the large coil of magnet wire at this table until I looked at the pictures afterwards... They probably wanted more than the ~$10.50/kg + a bit that copper is currently worth, but having not asked I'll never know.

Table with Cu Magnet Wire

The same seller also had a very nice set of Bird slugs and a matching body, full kit virtually DC to daylight, asking price several kilobucks - fair but out of my range for just a power meter.

The Do Not "Touch" Bird Set

One table had some rather interesting stuff, I picked up a nice stepper motor from the chap for $2. Peter got a small air compressor for the Killarney Heights Space Program, John (pictured) grabbed some test equipment. During pack-up the seller gave me a blue steel box free of charge.

John VK2ASU Checking Out Equipment

Peter picked up a "mystery box", we still don't know what's inside, but he has promised to tell us when he gets around to cracking it open. We all placed bets on what it actually is, consensus seems to be some kind of filter as it has two SO-239 jacks and what appear to be piston trimmer adjustment screws.

Peter's Mystery Box

For the HAM with a tube-based radio there were plenty of 807's available in various conditions. Lots of 810 and 805's too...

805 Tube
810 Tube
807 Tube

But the real bottles are inside the ARNSW shack itself.

Massive TX Tube

Once the Trash and Treasure wrapped up it was time for the Homebrew Group Meeting. The lecture this time was on 2.4 GHz WiFi networking. Erik VK2MAN lead with a demonstration of a converted Galaxy antenna, detailing how to disassemble the original converter and use the back-fire feed antenna with your WiFi card or self-contained access point. He also showed us a horizontally polarised slot antenna array which you can see resting against the tower.

Erik VK2MAN Lecturing

Erik also had a beautiful 2.4 GHz loop-Yagi he had constructed from hobby store brass stock and semi-rigid coax.

Erik's Loop Yagi

Peter VK2EMU then continued the lecture showing us another loop yagi for 2.4 GHz, one which apparently once held a gain record for VK. He also explained waveguide fundamentals, dish illumination and how two dishes are configured for diversity in commercial microwave links.

Peter VK2EMU with Big Loop Yagi

Show and tell was next, kicked off by Bernie with a very nicely constructed ATU he built for a friend.

Bernie an his ATU

Mike VK2BMR was next with his digital power meter and a high-power dummy load.

Mike and his Power Meter

Then Ross VK2VVV showed us his great telescopic antenna mast with a 2 metre antenna on the top. I particularly liked the stake which supported with "squid pole"-like mast and held it in place with Velcro straps. The entire unit takes only moments to deploy and breaks down in a very easily carried package.

Ross and his Antenna Mast

Mark VK2XOF then announced the upcoming disposal sale. Peter VK2EMU then closed the meeting with an announcement of the new location for our Tuesday evening meetings (previously at the Macdonald's Family "Restaurant" in Parammatta). Not quite sure how I'll be getting there, public transport seems to be much less available in the new location, but offers of a lift from the train station have been made, so I'm sure it will work out OK.