New Tower, Antenna Modifications for W1HQ
On August 13, Matt Strelow, KC1XX, and Andrew Toth of XX Towers installed a new 40 foot tower on top of the ARRL Headquarters building for use at W1HQ, the Laird Campbell Memorial HQ Operators Club. This new tower supports the 3 element SteppIR 20-6 meter Yagi antenna that was moved from the old tower; the antenna was placed on the old tower in November 2007. The antenna also received modifications, allowing operations on 30 and 40 meters. Both the antenna and the 30-40 meter modification kit were donated by Mike Mertel, K7IR, of SteppIR.
According to ARRL Test Engineer Bob Allison, WB1GCM, XX Towers visits the League twice a year to inspect both the W1AW and W1HQ antenna systems: "This past May, Matt's inspection found the tower was approaching poor condition due to its age and harsh environment. The new tower supports our 3 element SteppIR Yagi with a newly installed 40-30 meter Dipole Kit, recently donated by SteppIR Antenna Systems. HQ staff can now enjoy these additional bands and have peace of mind with the new tower."
ARRL Contest Branch Manager Sean Kutzko, KX9X, is president of the W1HQ club. "I am pleased to report that the W1HQ tower replacement and installation of the 40-30 meter dipole element on the SteppIR antenna was successful. HQ hams may now enjoy a rotating dipole for these bands at the push of a button on the SteppIR controller. The crew from XX Towers did a fine job; thanks to his regular inspections, we were able to avoid a more costly removal of the 50 foot, 35 year old tower. ARRL Building Manager Greg Kwasowski, W1GJK, assisted with and arranged for the roofing company to remove part of the roof for the tower base and replacement after tower installation. ARRL Lab Manager Ed Hare, W1RFI, saved the day with the needed metric hardware. Many thanks to all involved for the successful replacement of the tower. Having a rotatable dipole on 30 and 40 meters is a very welcome addition to the station."
W1HQ provides ARRL employees who do not have an amateur station of their own a place to get on the air. "I'm thrilled to have this station here," said Kutzko. "I live in an apartment and can't put up antennas outside at home. W1HQ gives me a way to chase DX and be active in contests on both HF and VHF."
W1HQ boasts an IC-756PROIII for HF work and an IC-746PRO for 6 and 2 meters, recently donated by ICOM. Bob Heil, K9EID, of Heil Sound donated two new Pro Set 4 mic/headsets, a PR781 Proline microphone and a topless boom to the station. Nemal Electronics Inc and Times Microwave Systems jointly donated two 500 foot rolls of LMR-400.