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K6TOP

Kevin J McGrath

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K6TOP

Accepts QSL via:
LoTW: YES
e-qsl: NO
mail QSL:YES

lookups: 23408


K6TOP is active from Hawaii as K6TOP/KH6 from May 1 to May 8 2017 along with Jeff, KG6OGF. The QTH is Hanalei on the North shore of Kauai. We are using Jeff's new KX2 and my ICOM 706IIG. The antenna is a 40/20/10 EFHW vertical wire hoisted up in a Norfolk pine. We have been operating from a table top on the veranda with terrific view of the beach and the mountains.

From Hawaii, everything is DX!

Kevin May 5. 2017

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(Ex K6ZS, KG6WI, WB6ZNY, first licensed as WN6UQS in 1966)

DX calls: VP2V/K6TOP, VP2VGG, HR9/K6TOP, FO0GRA, XE2HQF

My home QTH is located in the beautiful Santa Cruz Mountains in Northern California at elevation 1800' overlooking the Pacific Ocean 10 miles away. I operate mostly CW and enjoy chasing DX with an Elecraft K3 and an old Heathkit SB200 running 500 watts. My 40m antenna is a dipole up 50 feet fed with ladder line. For 20/15/10m a 2 element yagi at 40' does the job.

I operate from the British Virgin Islands several times a year while vacationing there. My next VP2V operation is May 28 to - June 5 2017.

My VP2V QSL manager is NR6M (Thanks Rex!). QSL via NR6M and/or LotW. Rex has all the logs going back to 2011.

I hold a commercial First Class Radiotelegraph Operator's Certificate and volunteer at coast radio station KPH, the last remaining maritime CW station in the US (see radiomarine.org). I am also a radio operator aboard the SS Jeremiah Obrien in San Francisco.

73, Kevin

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March 20, 2017 Update:

The logs from the February-March 2017 have been uploaded to LoTW. Email me for any corrections.

Please QSL via NR6M or LoTW.

My operating hours tended to be late evening on this trip. 14MHz and up were dead at that time and only 40M and 30M were open. However, the trap on my homebrew 30/17M EFHW went bad so I couldn't operate on 30M. Mornings had good openings to EU on 20M and 17M.

QSOs:

  • 466 QSOs total, all CW
    • 40M CW 240
    • 20M CW 120
    • 17M CW 105
    • 15M CW 1
  • 74 DXCC countries
  • The logs have been sent to my manager (NR6M) and also uploaded to LotW
  • QSL via NR6M or LotW

Kevin.

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I will be QRV as VP2V/K6TOP Feb 21 - March 11 2017. QSL via NR6M or LotW.

using an Icom 706 MK2G (100W) and EFHW verticals for 40, 30, 20, 17, 15 and 10 meters

73, Kevin

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VP2V/K6TOP Nov 2 - Nov 14 2016 Logs have been uploaded to LotW

73, Kevin

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VP2V/K6TOP update April 9, 2016

The logs from the Feb 28 - March 7 VP2V operation have been uploaded to LotW.

My next VP2V operation will be in May 27 - June 15, 2016.

Very 73,

Kevin


VP2V/K6TOP update March 21, 2016

Overall conditions were suprisingly good for being on the downhill side of the solar cycle. Even 10m was open. My new 40/20/10m end-fed half wave (homebrewed) worked quite well. I was able to operate a 1 hour or so in the mornings and a couple of hours in the evenings and made 410 QSO with most of those being 40m.

Note: The logs have NOT been uploaded to LotW (as of 3/21) due to a disk crash and lost certificate. But the logs themeselves were backed-up and are OK! I hope to replace the certifciate and upload to LotW by the end of the week.

  • Operated from Feb 28-Mar 3, 2016
  • 404 QSOs total, all CW
    • 40M CW 204
    • 20M CW 118
    • 15M CW 42
    • 10M CW 40
  • 50 DXCC countries
  • The logs will be uploaded to LotW later this week (3/26)
  • QSL via NR6M or LotW

I also operated the ARRL DX SSB contest on 3/5 and 3/6 as VP2VGG. 1908 QSOs (1400 on 10m!) and 150 mults. Total operating time was ~12 hours. Great fun!


VP2V/K6TOP update Feb 28, 2016

Planned operation from Feb 28 - March 7, 2016

  • The logs will be uploaded to LotW when I return
  • QSL via LotW (preferred) or direct. No buro cards.
  • will be QRV as VP2VGG in ARRL DX SSB contest

VP2V/K6TOP update Nov 15, 2015

  • Operated from Nov 4 - Nov 10, 2015
  • The logs were uploaded to LotW on Nov 30, 2015
  • QSL via NR6M or LotW

VP2V/K6TOP update July 16, 2015

  • Operated from July 3 to July 8, 2015
  • The logs were uploaded to LotW on July 16, 2015
  • QSL via NR6M ot LotW.
  • 610 QSOs total, all CW
    • 40M CW 30
    • 20M CW 450
    • 15M CW 130
  • 60 DXCC countries

I was able to operate an hour or two each day, in between sailing and diving activities. Conditions on 15 and 20 were poor in the mornings (which is unusual) and mostly dead. The evenings were much better with good openings into NA and EU with big pileups. Got up late one night (2am) to see what was on, and had good opening into Asia and the Pacific on 20M and worked 30 JA/VK/ZL in a row. I had planned to work more 40M this trip, but 40m wire vertical came down (again!), so only a few QSOs were made on 40.

A comment on pile-up behavior: I'm always amazed that, when I say "up 1" , many callers call *precisely*at 1.0000000... kHz up, covering each other up, exactly zero-beated on each other. There'll be S9 (even plus 10 or 20!) signals all zero-beating and thus unreadable at 1.00 up, while I'm working S2 - S3 signals just slightly off frequency at +.8 or +1.2 kHz. You'd think people would learn to spread out a bit!

All in all, it was a great trip. My next VP2V operation is scheduled for November 7-14 2015.


HR9/K6TOP update May 2, 2015

Cards have been sent out for all direct QSLs received before May 1 2015, and logs have been uploaded to LotW. Please, no buro cards.

I


HR9/K6TOP Roatan wrap up: (April 12, 2015)

Ou condo was a 3-story building on the top of a 200' hill about 1/4 mile inland on the NW coast of Roatan. I was able to get to the roof of the condo, some 45' above the ground and ran the end-fed have-wave as a sloper from the roof to the fence outside our bottom floor unit.The girls went to bed and I worked the CQ SSB WPX contest from 9pm to midnight and did S&P on 20 and 40. Getting QSOs that night was really tough, quite often the station I called didn't hear me at all. Many times, by the time I finished my way-too-long call ("Hotel Radio Nine Stroke Kilo Six Tango Oscar Papa...whew!) they'd be half-finished the exchange with another station! And when they did answer they asked for *many* repeats of my call. The next morning was better. I stayed on 10M where the QRM was not as bad and just called CQ. Rates were not high - 40-60 and hour, except for a few bursts when I as 'spotted'.

The rest of the week, bands were dead in the early mornings, and we'd be out doing some activity until late afternoon. After dinner the 20 and 40 were open to NA and EU (late evening into EU was great on 40M) where I got a lots of callers.

Final count was 830 QSOs (265 in the CQ SSB WPX contest and 565 the rest week).

I'm swaiting on the LotW certificate for HR9/K6TOP. The logs will be uploaded to LotW when that arrives. QSLs via LotW are preferred, and please: no buro cards!


I will be operating as HR9/K6TOP from March 28-April 4, 2015 while vacationing on Roatan Is., Honduras:

  • Equipment: ICOM 706 MKIIG, 100 watts, 10/20/40M End Fed Half-Wave
  • Modes: I work CW almost exclusively

Operating hours are typically 0300-0600Z and 1200-1400Z

  • QSLs via LOTW preferred, logs will be uploaded upon return
  • Please, no buro QSLs

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I will be operating as VP2V/K6TOP from Nov 11 - Nov 18, 2014 while vacationing on Tortola, British Virgin Islands:

  • Equipment: ICOM 706 MKII, 100 watts, 20/15/10 multiband dipole.
  • Modes: I work CW almost exclusively

Operating hours are typically 0100-0300Z and 1000-1200Z

  • QSLs via LOTW preferred, logs will be uploaded upon return
  • When the pileups get difficult, I listen to the edges, please spread your calls out.
  • Thanks for your patience!

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Update for July 26 - August 1, 2014 VP2V operation:

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February 5, 2013 VP2V Update for Jan 20-Jan 27 VP2V operation

  • Operated from Jan 20 to Jan 27
  • The logs were uploaded to LotW on Jan 30
  • 484 QSOs total, all CW
    • 40M CW 303
    • 20M CW 154
    • 12M CW 27
  • 42 DXCC countries

I got the 40M wire vertical working again and concentrated on that band. Overall conditions were fair, with low noise levels. Sometimes CQs went unanswered and other times generated large pileups. The European stations were especially unruly. I would pull out partial callsigns and send something like "G3?" and would get 10 stations replying besides the G3 with calls nowhere near what I asked for. That just slows everyone down. The QSO rate drops from 2 or 3 per minute to 1 every 2 or 3 minutes. PLEASE, IF I SEND A PARTIAL, ONLY RESPOND IF YOUR CALLSIGN MATCHES, DO NOT JUST KEEP CALLING!

Next VP2V operation is April 2013.

73,

Kevin, K6TOP

December 14, 2012 VP2V Update

  • The logs were uploaded to LotW today
  • 378 QSOs total, all CW
  • 49 DXCC countries

I was only able to operate 1-2 hours a day (as usual), between family activities. A total of 378 QSOs were made - 190 QSOs on 20 with the rest evenly spread over 17, 15 and 12M

73,

Kevin, K6TOP

December 3, 2012 VP2V Update

I have been able to operate1-2 hours a day. mostly in the morning and early afternnoon here. Propagation isn't very good, but had some good runs on 20, 15 and 12. This afternnon, I loaded up the 20M dipole on 17M and worked a few dozen QSOs. mostly US. I was suprised to get out at all!

I plan to operate the ARRL 10M contest ths weekend (12/7-9). I will be joined by my good friend Cliff, K6CLS. We wll be using the call VP2VGG

73 and TU

Kevin, K6TOP

July 31, 2012 VP2V Update

  • The July logs were uploaded to LotW on 7/31
  • 516 QSOs total, all CW
  • 60 DXCC countries

Another great trip to the British Virgin Islands! We spent family time at the beaches, sailing, snorkeling and scuba diving. And a couple hours of radio a day for me. 10M and 12M were completely dead this trip, no answers to multiple CQs and 15M was in poor shape. 90% of my contacts were made on 20M which had some decent openings to NA and EU. Tthere was only a brief opening to JA and VK/ZL late one eveneing. On the next trip I will make a special effort to work Asia and VK/ZL. No 40M this time, the 40M vertical and radials need some work.

73 and TU

Kevin, K6TOP

July 17, 2012 VP2V Update

I will be operating as VP2V/K6TOP from July 20-26 while vacationing on Tortola, British Virgin Islands:

  • Equipment: ICOM 706 MKII, 100 watts, 40M vertical, 20/15/10 multiband dipole.
  • I work CW almost exclusively

My operating hours are typically 0200-0400Z and 1000-1200Z due to family commitments

  • QSLs via LOTW preferred, logs will be uploaded upon return
  • When the pileups get difficult, I listen to the edges, so please spread your calls out.
  • This is a 'vacation style' DXpedition, thanks for your patience!

73 and GL,

Kevin.

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July 13 - QSLs for April 2012 operation

  • On 7/13 the last QSLs were mailed out for the April VP2V operation

April 19, 2012 VP2V Update

  • April logs were uploaded to LotW on 4/19
  • 615 QSOs total (586 CW, 29 SSB)
  • 66 DXCC countries

I found that band conditions were poorer than last December, the SF was only in 90s vs. 130. Also, QSB was very pronounced on 20M and 12M this time. S5 signals would drop right down to S0 in a few seconds which made it difficult to complete some QSOs. The WX was very rainy for 3 days and the 40M antenna's feedline got waterlogged so I was able to make just a few QSOs on 40M. The dipole came down in a windy squall late in the week and I had to resolder the feedpoint connections and put it back up. I was able to load up the multi-band (20/15/10) dipole on 12M using a tuner and make many QSOs on that band. I am impressed on how well it gets out considering the center is at only 30' and the ends at 18'! All in all a very good VP2V vacation with lots of snorkeling, scuba, beaches, sailing, rum and radio!

Thanks for your patience in the pileups! My next VP2V operation is planned to July 2012.

73, Kevin.


1/30/12 Update on December 2011 VP2V operation QSLs:

  • All direct QSLs received by 1/20/2012 were sent out on 1/30
  • December logs were uploaded to LotW on 12/30/11
  • Thanks for your patience!

December 2011 VP2V/K6TOP statistics

  • 586 QSOs total, over 3 days of operation (Dec 4,5,6)
  • 55 DXCC countries,
  • 462 CW QSOs, 124 SSB QSOs
    • 40M CW: 161
    • 20M CW: 10
    • 15M CW: 8
    • 12M 222 (148 CW, 74 SSB)
    • 10M 185 (135 CW, 50 SSB)

73, Kevin.



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