Tag Archives: blogs about amateur radio

Requiem For Radio Shack.

      11 Comments on Requiem For Radio Shack.
radio shack

Special author’s note: The March 19 Off Grid Ham article mentioned Radio Shack only as a minor side story. So many readers commented about their experiences with the fabled electronics retailer that I thought it was worthwhile to address the topic in more detail. I wrote the following article for… Read more »

Be Your Own Radio Shack…Because You Have To.

off grid supplies

The halcyon days. As early as middle school, before I was a ham and still into CB radio, Radio Shack was my haven. They had pretty much anything a teenaged electronics experimenter and ham could ever want. With thousands of locations, they were everywhere. I know I’m dating myself but… Read more »

The Comedy and Tragedy of Wind Power.

      10 Comments on The Comedy and Tragedy of Wind Power.
wind energy

It’s not a comedy if you’re living through it. Bad news out of Texas gives us an opportunity  to look at what can happen when energy policy and weather conspire to pull the grid down. If you live in the upper Midwest USA like me, or New England, or for… Read more »

Your Friend, The Voltage Regulator.

      6 Comments on Your Friend, The Voltage Regulator.
voltage regulator

An old concept. The voltage regulator has been around since the days of the vacuum tube. Modern radios are especially dependent on them. What are they, and why do they matter? In electronics, current can and does vary but voltage usually does not, or should not. Radios generally do not… Read more »

To Whom It May Concern.

      14 Comments on To Whom It May Concern.
FCC WARNING TO HAM RADIO

A curious trend. Just over two weeks ago, traffic to Off Grid Ham exploded. By January 15, OGH racked up more page views and unique visitors than it usually gets in an entire month. At this writing the website has surpassed its previous monthly traffic record by many thousands of… Read more »

A Transfer Switch Will Make Your Life Simpler and Safer.

transfer switch

Transfer switch 101. Have you ever wanted to run more than just a few devices from your generator? Maybe you want the convenience and safety of connecting your existing home AC wiring to an off grid source? Maybe you don’t like the idea of running extension cords all over the… Read more »

Learning From Off Grid Mistakes…Part 2.

      12 Comments on Learning From Off Grid Mistakes…Part 2.
OFF GRID MISTAKES

I wasn’t planning a “part 2”. learning from off grid mistakes  Last May’s article about off grid mistakes received a surprising amount of attention. Many months later, it’s still a very popular piece. As a follow up, I thought it would be a good idea to revisit the issue and… Read more »

The Secret Life of Multimeters.

      10 Comments on The Secret Life of Multimeters.
Radio Shack multimeter

As basic as it gets. If you do not own at least one good multimeter, you’re not a serious off grid amateur. If you’re new to amateur radio, ok I’ll give you a pass. For everyone else, multimeters are such a fundamental tool that there isn’t any wiggle room on… Read more »

The Ship Has Sailed.

      1 Comment on The Ship Has Sailed.
survival and preparedness

Where have you been? Preparedness and survival  As I write this the outcome of the Presidential election is not known. Depending on who you choose to believe, which candidate is ahead and which is lagging is a wildly open concept. One thing for certain is that there is a sense… Read more »

When Things Go Wrong, What Type of Ham Are You?

troubleshooting solar power

It’s all fun & games until the electrons stop flowing. Operating amateur radio is a load of fun. Operating amateur radio off grid is extra fun, but adds a layer of technical complexity to your station. Have you ever thought of what you would do if your off grid system… Read more »

Discussing Vertical And Wire Antennas.

      4 Comments on Discussing Vertical And Wire Antennas.
vertical and wire antennas

A topic so deep and wide. I messing around with you. There is no such thing as an antenna specifically for off grid radio. But since off grid amateurs tend to be practical, do-it-yourself types, some vertical and wire antennas are more more appealing than others. What are the options,… Read more »

Any Day Can Be Field Day.

      16 Comments on Any Day Can Be Field Day.
off grid radio training

My one-man Field Day. off grid radio training For amateurs who are into off grid radio for preparedness/emergency purposes, I have a blunt reality check for you: You’re probably not as prepared as you think you are. And you’re most likely not off grid radio training enough. Participating in Field… Read more »