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Ring out the old; ring in the new.
The photo above shows my nice new shack, in my nice new place. All of the radios are on, and their lights are all lit. This is a condition that would virtually never exist during operation. Normally, I have one or possibly two radio on at any given time. There are a couple of additions to my gear, and I feel overwhelmed by the amount of space and comfort that I now operate in. The heart of my station is the old Kenwood trio. The main pieces of gear are the matching Kenwood TS-711a 2 meter transceiver, the Kenwood TS-440SAT HF radio, and the Kenwood TS-811D in 440. There is also a Kenwood TS-60S on six meter. These are hooked into a new, more powerful version of Porky the computer, along with my PCR-100 receiver. Porky is a pretty old and slow computer, by today's standards, but has more than enough power control five different radios, the Kenwood's, and the Icom. I have been doing quite a bit of work on my old antenna system, and have an entire attic crawl space all to myself. To the left is a photo of my first real shack, in a previous apartment.
For handi talkies, I have my little Radio Shack HTX-200, HTX-400, and HTX-245, micro sized HTs, and a Yaesu FT-530, as well as some commercial Kenwood units which have been programmed to 70cm and GMRS frequencies. The rather plain looking analog clock up on the wall, is a radio controlled unit that sets itself according to a signal transmitted by the US Bureau of Standards atomic clocks. It is accurate to some obscenely small fraction of a second. There is also a weather station hooked up to remote transmitters for wind speed, wind direction, rain, temperature, and pressure.
Porky is one of five computers I keep in this area. This is because my ham shack takes up about a fourth of the large bedroom which I have transformed into a library. It is the kind of room I have wanted since I was child. Book cases line three of the walls, while my ham gear occupies the fourth. A roll top desk sits off in the the corner, along with a drafting table. The center of the room is taken up with a leather recliner, a study table, and a small sofa. Porky's companions are Acer, which is my most powerful machine, my general purpose computer, and the one I use to browse the web, Junior (Unix), and Linus (Linux) which are set up on my library table, and Chief, which is my Windows 2003 Server. These computers are connected to each other, and to the computers in the other rooms, by a 24 port programmable hub. I also have a wireless router, but prefer hard wired cat5 connections when I can run the wiring.
Placing the antennas was a bit tricky, but fortunately, I have that crawl space. I have also mounted a weather station on my roof - with a mast that doubles as an antenna. Hidden among these trappings are my CB antenna, my 2 meter antenna, and the discones that I use for the Icom.
The HF radio operates off of a single 42 amp power supply, which is more that sufficient, while the 2 meter, and the Shortwave can be plugged directly into the wall. The Kenwood never draws more than 17-20 amps, even when transmitting. The little Azden probably draws less than 10, when I hook it up in the house. Neither requires more than an amp or so, when receiving. My other radios require no special power supply, and are simply plugged into a strip.
The whole outfit was previously set up in the corner of the dining room of my old place, right next to a window, overlooking a very busy street. There were a pair of desks, along with a hutch, and some shelves to contain everything. This is the area I had used as my computer and Internet workstation, and it continued to perform this function. My main computer of the time, bigguy, was in this area, as well as Porky, my ham controller, and computer. The picture below, shows my old station, as it was before my move, and my acquisition of the Kenwood 711. Porky is out of sight, though his monitor may be seen off to the right of the photo. Bigguy can barely be seen, to the lower left. Also hidden, are the PCR-100, and the power supply that runs everything. My little 2 meter rig sat atop my CB base. It is interesting to note that the 2 meter FM unit, which puts out 50 watts, and covers a 4 MHz wide band in 5 kHz steps (800 channels), is dwarfed by a CB radio which puts out 4 watts, and covers 40 channels over a band scarcely 1 MHz in width.
This area contained much of my computer gear. There is a scanner and printer, just out of the range of the photo, and my server is off the the far right (also outside the photo). The laptop sits on the corner of the desk, though it is rarely used, except for when I work out of my home. I really do not care much for laptops, and would not have one, if my job did not require it. All in all, it was a very comfortable area to work and play in, though I was quite happy to get a place where I could assign it a bit more space.