Visitors at W7ZOI,  May 15, 2017         (updated, 17May2017)
vu2ese in w7zoi shack 
    Ashhar Farhan, VU2ESE, in " the shack" at W7ZOI

The Geekfest

When Farhan told us that he and Humera were coming to the USA, we invited them to visit the Pacific Northwest and they accepted.    I then started to work with Farhan to assemble a list of people he might want to meet.    What we came up with was a list of some of the local homebrew enthusiasts, many of them folks that Farhan had met through correspondence.   We then put a "meeting" together at our house to welcome Farhan and Humera to the US.    Bob Culter came up with the term "Geekfest" to describe the event. One major disappointment was that Bob Larkin, W7PUA, was not able to attend.    He and Farhan have many mutual interests.


 
A bunch of us gathered to welcome Farhan to the USA.    Click here to see who is who in the photo.

Homebrew Projects:

A week or two before Farhan's arrival, Roger and I were talking about the visit.   We were trying to come up with things that would be of interest to Farhan.   We had already assembled a list of people that Farhan might like to meet.    Roger suggested that he might bring his original Ugly Weekender over for him to see.   As I thought about the suggestion, it struck me that it might be really interesting to have everyone bring a homebrew project for a "show and tell" session, so that became a criterion.      Farhan seemed to get a kick out of this and took photos of the various projects along with their creator.    The photos that Farhan took with his cell phone follow.

Here's Roger, KA7EXM, with the original "Ugly Weekender" from QST, August, 1981.    That's when we did the transmitter, which is the bottom two boxes.     Roger added the receiver portion (the top box) a few years later, converting it into a transceiver.    This rig was our "formal" introduction of Ugly Construction to the amateur community.    This was an attempt to encourage builders to work with schematic diagrams and concepts rather than always needing a printed circuit board.     Incidentally, Farhan uses Ugly Construction in many of his projects.   (Farhan photo.)

Here's a really old one shown by Jeff, WA7MLH.   This is a two band receiver for 80 and 40 meter CW.     This is one that we designed together.   Jeff built it and we then debugged and measured it here before it was eventually included in Solid-State-Design.    See SSD, page 101.   This was our solid state version of the band imaging receivers that were found in the ARRL Handbooks in the 1950s.      Jeff brought a very large box of other projects to display, showing Farhan many of his more recent efforts.    
(Farhan photo.) 

Here we have Rick and Roy talking about those good ole rigs that they had built.    This
Field Day transceiver covers the 20 and 15 meter CW bands.   It's also a band imaging design with an IF at 3.58 MHz using a 5 element crystal filter.    The output power amplifier for this rig is shown in Fig 2.99 on page 2.36 of EMRFD.   (Farhan photo.)


Here we see Bob, N7FKI, tuning the High Sensitivity Crystal Set that he described in QST for January, 2007.   The large loop on the right side of the photo can be used for enhanced sensitivity.  Note that there is no outside antenna or ground for this crystal receiver.  It still worked.   
(Farhan photo.)

The original AD8307 Power Meter (w7zoi and w7pua, QST, June, 2001) is being shown to Farhan.  The original ugly breadboard version of the 1998 QST spectrum analyzer is on the bench just below the large meter.  
(Farhan photo.)

Here we have Rick (KK7B), Roy (W7EL), Farhan (VU2ESE), and Jeff (WA7MLH) trading stories about homebrew rigs and experiments.  
(Farhan photo.)

Here's Rick, KK7B, with his R1 "Classic 40" direct conversion receiver that appeared in August 1992 QST.   I'm told it still works.   
(Farhan photo.)

What "show and tell" session would be complete without Roy (W7EL) showing off his classic Optimized QRP Transceiver from August 1980 QST? 
(Farhan photo.)

Bob, N7FKI, and Rick, KK7B, are listening attentively while viewing a large RF power transistor in the foreground.     If old vacuum tube folks can display old their old 4-1000 power tetrodes, it seems reasonable that we can show off old monster bipolar transistors.    This part was built in 1963 or a little earlier.     See http://w7zoi.net/xstrs.html .        
(Farhan photo.)

The rest of the folks attending:
    There were a few more folks joining us for Pizza.    Charlene (a.k.a., Shon) Hayward took care of the food and the hospitality.    Mark Hansen, KI7N,  joined us but missed out on the photos.    (It really had nothing to do with Mark having forgotten to bring his homebrew X-Band transverter.   We still gave him some Pizza.)   Joe Heil, KF7FME, brought a BITX-40 SSB transceiver that he just got packaged.   This was an early version of one of Farhan's products from the Internet.    Finally, Kerri Hayward (Roger's wife) joined us, enjoying a visit with Humera.

The Key

Farhan presented each of us with a homebrew hand key built by his friend in India, Sankar, VU3XVR.    My version is shown below.   I'm hoping that we can all put them on the air for the next SKN.   See  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S3OvxuAq_VA for another view of one of these keys by the builder.    Many thanks to Farhan for the wonderful gift.


Some light rain to end the visit.


  Farhan and his wife, Humera, were headed for Seattle after visiting us.   They were picked up by their friend Rashid.    We were going to take a very short walk this morning so I could show them the woods south of our house.   Alas, we had hardly left the yard when it started to rain.    Some of us did get up to the woods, but we encountered some rain in the process.    We quickly converged back under our front porch.   The photo shows Farhan, Rashid, Humera, and myself.   Farhan commented that rain this light is a rarity in India.