I was looking for something about the Wyandotte Repeater, and came across this video:
Nothing huge there, but that's (despite what the title of the video says) actually a fox transmitting during a foxhunt, not a repeater ID. Just thought I'd share in case anyone was curious. Sad that some people are so harsh about a tech-class ham not knowing morse code, though. Criticism is fine, but being a dick about it isn't. Maybe I'll write a post about that sometime soon.
Penguicon is coming up, and rumor has it I won't be the only ham there. I talked to one gentleman (whose name and call I've forgotten) that's in the area and had planned on finding a decent simplex 2m frequency to use there, that could be cool. I've been to Penguicon before, but this is the first one since I've gotten back into amateur radio, and the first once I'll be going to since finally getting around to getting myself an HT, so I'm looking forward to seeing what comes of that.
I'm thinking I'll check for any satellite passes during the con and bring my Arrow antenna, and see about working a pass or two while there. I have an unlicensed friend that might be interested to see that, and who knows, maybe it'll get some attention. After all, the density of electronics and computer nerds at this con is pretty great, so it's worth a try. Even if it's just me though, it's a chance to stand around outside waving around an antenna and get slightly fewer strange looks. With any luck, maybe I'll make a contact. Depending on how busy I am this week and how weather is, it could very well be (and likely will be, if I make a contact) my first satellite QSO. It'd be neat to have it at Penguicon.
No idea if any ham radio related events, talks, or panels are going on - I don't think so, but I haven't checked the events list recently. If not, meh. Maybe next year, even if I have to be the one to volunteer to do it.
The Motor City Radio Club fox hunting season is coming up, I'm a bit excited. Fox hunting can be a fun little bit of something different. Basically, the "fox" is a group (in our case, whoever won the last fox hunt) that takes a transmitter and transmits one minute at a time, spaced one minute apart, from a anywhere the rules allow. The rest of the groups start out and look for them, using directional antennas. The fox is limited nearly any place within 30 miles (air distance) from the Wyandotte Repeater (147.24+). Not a terribly complex thing really, but fun nonetheless. The idea is to get there with the most direct route possible - time isn't important, generally.
One of the kind of neat things is that it's not terribly vital to have the fanciest equipment, either. I was in the winning group once in 2009, and we were using Bruce (KD8JTZ)'s 2 meter HT he picked up for $20, and his homemade 3 element yagi he made for (if I remember right) less than $10. It's more about patience than latest and greatest radio equipment. For example, we partly won because at the end, we thought they were either at the end of a dead-end dirt road, or further down the road we were already on. If we went down the dirt road (maybe a mile, mile and a half long), it's a couple of miles added to our distance, which can easily be the difference between first place and the end. It was a gamble, but technically for the club's rules, the distance counted is what the car drove, walking doesn't get included. So we walked there to check.
Yesterday while walking to a nearby coney island for lunch, I saw a man flying a kite, and thought "what if I were to hang an antenna from there?". I thought it seemed like a stupid idea, but why not? It would give it some elevation with the most minimal of costs. My only real concern is whether or not it'd be possible, or even just likely, to get the kite to stay up for an extended period of time - it's already dependent on a wind after all. However, this guy seems to have put some time into it, so maybe it's not as absurd as I had thought. He even talks about using balloons, which should be even better - lift isn't dependent on wind anymore, so even on a completely still day it could be used.
I'm thinking about trying one or both of these this summer, just for fun.