by William Eric McFadden



Three members of the Athens County (Ohio) Amateur Radio Association participated in the 1996 QRP to the Field. The operators were Mike Hansgen AA8EB, Drew McDaniel W8MHV, and Eric McFadden WD8RIF. The group operated under the call WD8RIF. Due to other family obligations, the group was able to operate for only about two and half hours.

The operating location was a public picnic area in the Strouds Run State Park near Athens, Ohio. Operation was conducted on a picnic table, open to the elements. The weather was cool and windy, not nearly as warm and sunny as one would have hoped, but this is not surprising as QRP to the Field occurred on the date that used to belong to the Dayton Hamvention!

The station consisted of an original Index Labs QRP Plus running five watts into a 40 meter half-wave dipole suspended between two trees. The station was powered by a 2.5 Ah gel cell battery. Additional items taken but not necessarily used were a Heath HM-9 meter, MFJ-901B tuner, Super CMOS II keyer built by WD8RIF, and a Bencher iambic paddle, microphone, headphones, and external speaker. (This station is WD8RIF's Portable Station, and the entire package, including the battery, a 20 meter dipole, an 80 meter quarter-wave end-fed wire with quarter-wave counterpoise, antenna support line, a weight for throwing the line into the trees, logbook, DXCC list, writing paper, and pencil fits in a recycled laptop computer case for easy travel.)

The three operators had a good time operating for the short period available, and are looking forward to a QRP Field Day in June.

The relaxed operation netted 28 contacts with stations in the states of NJ, WI, CT, MS, PA, IL, VA, TN, AL, NY, DC, MI, MD, MO, and NH, and the province of ONT.


QSO on 1 band/mode (40 meter CW)28
Power Multiplier (5 watts)5
Location Multiplier (Field Location)4
Equipment Multiplier (Commercial Eqpt)2

(#QSO) x (power multiplier) x (location) x (equipment) = score
28 x 5 x 4 x 2 = 1120

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