Lawn Care Maintenance Tips

Lawn Mower Maintenance Tips

Lawn Mower Maintenance Tips To Keep The Lawn Around Your Ham Radio Shack Looking Great

Having a ham radio shack surrounded by a garden was one of the best decisions I have ever made. It makes the surrounding area of my ham radio shack looks relaxing to the point that I drink my morning coffee on a chair just right outside the door of my shack which I usually do near a window inside my house. But of course, there are also some disadvantages to it and one of them is keeping your lawns well maintained otherwise it will look like a jungle. A lawnmower will be your best friend when you want to keep your lawn and garden looking great!

Here are some lawn mower maintenance tips to keep the lawn around your radio shack looking great! 

1. Clean Your Mower

Give your mower a good whack to get rid of the dead grass and bits of waste that don’t end up being ground out. Make sure that the handle has a good grip and that the fuel tank is clean and also replace the air filter if required or replace the engine if its a push or riding mower. Just doing this once a year will help keep your mower running smoothly.

2. Keep The Gas Aideablesclean

Try to make sure that your mower’s fuel and oil mixes are clean at all times. If the mixture is sketchy then it will make your outdoor lawn mower work hard and likely increase the need for fuel and spark plugs and can be a potential health risk.

3. Your Mower Should Have A Clean  Oil Filter

Make sure that you change your oil filter on a regular basis. The filter will reduce the requirement for fuel to be used and increase the life and usefulness of your machine.

4. Mow the Yard to the Right Settings

Mowers have different settings for different lawn types. A windy lawn will require less height while a smooth surface will need more height. So it’s wise to use the right tool for the lawn type you have and for the height you are mowing.

Lawn Care Tools

6. Mow Often 

Mowers will cut grasses about 3 to 4 times per mowing cycle. A great idea is to cut very frequently. These will have great results but the lawn will not remain the same shape and look constantly. That is because the grass is growing naturally, therefore the top layer will remain fairly flat and you will have to wait for the grass to grow for it to look natural. If the blades of the lawnmower are kept too short or too tight, the lawn will look patchy and patchy. Then you’ll have to leave the lawn cutting for a few more days!

8. Dirty Mower

Keeping your lawnmowers clean is very important. You can use pressure washers for cleaning. You can also use detergent, water (diluted), and a stiff brush to clean your lawnmower. 

Lawns are very important parts of your garden. So it is a good idea to clean and maintain them to keep them healthy and pretty, as well as beautiful, the way that they are intended to look. Ever faced lawn care problems with your lawn? Do not fret, ask for a professional lawn care services company or landscaping company. They will understand your problem and they can come up with an efficient solution for your lawn problems. 

Ham Radio DIY

Beginners Tips to Ham Radio – Make Your Own

If you’ve some basic knowledge of circuits and common electrical components, then you can easily make your own ham radio. What’s even better? You don’t need a lot of equipment! Yes! You’ve read absolutely right! In this article, we are sharing some amazing tips to make a DIY ham radio from scratch!

Basically, you’ll need a total of five main components for building a ham radio station. These are as follows :

The Antenna

Antenna Tuner

Transmitter

Receiver

Operator

Transceiver

Transceiver is a combination of a transmitter and receiver. This equipment is used to broadcast to the outside world. Because it can both transmit and receive the signals, it is known as a transceiver.

1.Antenna

The first thing you’ll need is an antenna. You have two options – a directional antenna and an omnidirectional antenna. The basic difference between these two is, while directional antenna sends out signals in one direction, omnidirectional sends out in the signals in all directions. Depending on your budget, you can go for anyone.

However, make sure that you’ve properly checked the working of the antenna before you purchase it. Give priority to a high-quality antenna before anything else.

2.Antenna Tuner

Although many beginner-level ham radio doesn’t need an antenna tuner, it would be great to have a good-quality antenna tuner. It is a crucial component for making a working ham radio. It helps the radio to receive and transmit signals smoothly. It enhances the capability of the transmitter and receiver in terms of bands and frequencies.

You can get antenna tuners in different shapes and sizes, make sure to buy a decent but working one that fits into your budget.

3. The Operator – Get A License

To be able to operate a ham radio, you’ll require a license. Basically, there are three categories of license including :

Entry-level license – As the name suggests, it is the basic level license which is most recommended to the beginners. Using this, you’ll be able to communicate over a few HF bands.

General Class – It is the most commonly used license. To get this, you’ll have to pass the technician exam. With this, you will be able to get extra HF bands which are more than enough for a ham radio.

Advanced level – Finally, there is an advanced level license that allows you to access all the HF bands along with the full radio spectrum. You have to pass the technician exam and should have a few years of ham radio experience to get this.

4. Building The Circuit

If you’re a beginner, then we recommend you to use the DIY ham radio kits that are easily available online. These come with full instructions and step by step procedure to fully assist you. However, if you don’t want to use these kits, you can build the radio yourself as well. For this, learn and understand the circuit diagram. It will help you to connect all the components with ease.

And Voila!! Making a DIY ham radio is not as complicated as it sounds. With proper knowledge and some high-quality equipment, you can easily do it on your own. Follow the above-mentioned tips and start working on your own ham radio!

Ham Radio Operator

Why Everyone Should be a HAM Radio Operator

HAM Radio is also known as Amateur radio. For many people, it is a hobby that connects electronics, communications, and space. But this hobby becomes a key source of hope during natural disasters and human conflicts when every other mean of communication is disrupted. Because of the some key technologies involved, many people take to ham radio operation as a hobby. Apparently, the technology is simple and anyone can set up his HAM radio station and start communicating with the world. A Ham Radio Operator can also telecast weather bulletin or a short radio message to all those who are tuned to his band frequency.  

What can you do with HAM Radio?

If you are a HAM Radio hobbyist, it will open up the exciting field of practical physics. When you are active in your given frequency, you are more alert and trying to decipher what others are saying. Sometimes, some of you will like to broadcast meteorological information informing others about the weather conditions in your area. Through HAM radio, you can keep watch on what’s the weather condition in the space. Through you radio, you can send your signal to the moon and let it come back to you. Do you feel excited at the prospect? Yes, that’s Ham radio. You can set it up yourself and have the fun of being a scientist in your own right.

Here are some of the advantages of being a HAM radio enthusiast:

Communicate with the world

All communication systems such as WiFI, mobile, radars, TVs, etc. work within their given frequency band and they pay to the government for using their frequency band. Amateur radio operators also get a fixed frequency band along with their license, which allows the government to keep track of all licensed HAM radio operators. With this frequency band and radio license, HAM radio operators can transmit their messages to all those who are tuned to that frequency band. It can also receive messages from other operators in the same frequency band. This practically allows you to communicate with people across the world that is without the help of mobile or the Internet.

Transmit images

While you can send voice communications and coded messages across the globe, you can further up the game by transmitting an image to the other end. You can transmit images by coded audio messages for which various coding techniques are available.

EME Communication

Earth has a natural satellite in moon. We all know the radio waves bounce back when they hit a surface. In this case, radio waves sent to the moon bounce back after heating the moon’s surface. Since moon has quite a big surface, it’s a huge reflector for radio waves sitting above us. Anyone on the earth who is able to view the moon will be able to receive the signal on their radio. For this EME communication, all you need to do is send a radio wave to the moon and wait for it return.  

Final thoughts

HAM radio operation is a useful and interesting hobby. Through this, you can keep a network of communication open even when most other networks have lost their way. HAM radio operations is a one-man show and that’s why in the case of a natural disaster or human conflicts when ordinary networks of communications are down, even one Ham Radio Operator can establish a connection with the rest of the world. All this makes a case for everyone should be a HAM radio operator.

Tips When Building your first ham radio

10 Tips For Building Your First Ham Radio

Building your first ham radio can be pretty confusing for the first time builders. There are many suggestions and tips on the internet which can be overwhelming for the first time builders. I have curated below a detailed guide on how to build your first Ham Radio from Dummies.com. This is the guide that I have also read when I started building my first ham radio so I know that this will be a big help for those who are just starting out. This will also help you save some money from buying the wrong things that you might not need in the end.

Be flexible

Don’t assume that you’ll be doing the same activities on the air forever. Here are a few tips on flexibility:

  • Avoid using specialized gear except where it’s required for a specific type of operating or function.
  • Use a computer and software for things that are likely to change, like operating on the digital modes.
  • Don’t neglect grounding and bonding — build this in as the first step. It’s harder to do later and having it in place makes it easy to change the equipment layout.
  • Try a different layout to see if something works better — you’re allowed to change your mind! You might find a new arrangement to be more comfortable or convenient.
  • Leave some budget for “surprises,” like a special cable or a power distribution box. You never know what a new interest or operating style will bring.

When starting out you do not know yet what you are really doing so leaving room for flexibility and changes will be a good thing to do. There are a lot of things that I changed since I started. Leave some emergency budget just in case there are unforeseen expenses that are necessary but already out of your budget.

Study other stations

Browse the web for articles and videos that show how other stations are put together and operated. Make note of any particularly good ideas. Don’t be intimidated by big stations, because they started out as small stations!

Be friendly to the other stations and don’t be shy to ask them questions. They would be much willing to help you out and answer some questions for you. More people getting interested in the game is better and more fun for everyone.

Learn about those extra functions

You paid for all those nifty features and controls — learn how they work and put them to work for you. Here are some common examples:

  • MON: Short for Monitor, this button is usually close to a handheld transceiver’s PTT switch. It opens the squelch so you can listen for a weak station without changing the usual squelch level.
  • Memory write: You should practice transferring your VFO settings to a memory channel. On VHF/UHF this is good practice for public service operating. On HF, you can use this when chasing a DXpedition or making a schedule. Learn how to do this without referring to the manual.
  • Noise blankers and noise reduction: Turning these on and off is easy but did you know they are adjustable? Controlling the sensitivity and level of these functions customizes them for the noise at your location. You should also be skilled at adjusting the radio’s RF gain and AGC for HF operation. Know where the preamp and attenuator controls are, too.
  • Adjustable filters: Since most new radios use DSP, filters are smoothly adjustable, can be offset above and below your operating frequency, and different settings stored for later use. After you become skilled at using these functions, you’ll wonder how you lived without them!
  • Voice and Morse messages: Many radios can store messages and play them back. If you are operating in a contest or special event, this ability is very handy. Some radios can record audio off the air, too. While you’re at it, learn how to use your radio’s internal Morse keyer.
  • Custom setups: Your radio may be able to save its operating configuration on a memory card or internally. This allows you to create custom setups for casual operating, public service nets, contesting, mobile operating, and so forth. It sure saves a lot of button pressing!

Sometimes we get easily overwhelmed and forget to explore all the functions of the equipment’s and gears that we have. It also happened to me, after buying the equipment I am so excited to use it that I did not explore all the functions and after some time I was surprised to find out the other things that it could do. This is a common mistake for beginners and even for some veterans.

Shop for used-equipment bargains

If you have a knowledgeable friend who can help you avoid worn-out and inadequate gear, buying used equipment is a great way to get started. Purchasing used gear from a dealer who offers a warranty is also a good option. Saving money now leaves you more cash for exploring new modes and bands later.

You can save a lot of money by buying 2nd hand equipment rather than buying a brand new one. The only problem is you might encounter obsolete or poorly performing equipment. The good thing with buying brand new is that you will be spared from all the hassle if in case you have bought a defective equipment.

Build something yourself

Using equipment that you build yourself is a thrill. Start small by building accessory projects such as audio switches, filters, and keyers. Building things yourself can save you some money, too. Don’t be afraid to get out the drill and soldering iron. You can find lots of kits, web articles, magazines, and books of projects to get you started.

This is the most exciting part of the game. I love building things and you will discover a lot of things by trying to build something by yourself. There are a lot of diy guides in the internet and even youtube which will make it easier.

Save cash by building your own cables

You need lots of cables and connectors in your station. At a cost of roughly $5 or more for each premade cable, you can quickly spend as much on connecting your equipment as you can on purchasing a major accessory. Learn how to install your own connectors on cables, and you’ll save many, many dollars over the course of your ham career. Plus, you’ll be better able to troubleshoot and make repairs.

It is very easy to install and connect your equipment rather than by buying those ready-made ones. The good thing about it is that you will be able to make your own troubleshooting and repair simple problems with your station unlike if you bought ready-made ones.

Build step by step

After you have the basics of your station in place, upgrade your equipment in steps so that you can always hear a little farther than you can transmit. Don’t be an alligator (all mouth, no ears). Plan with a goal in mind so that your ham radio dollars and hours all work to further that goal. Remember that the biggest bang for your ham radio buck is often improving the antenna!

Make yourself comfortable

You’re going to spend a lot of hours in front of your radio, so take care of yourself, too. Start with a comfortable chair. Excellent chairs are often available in used-office-furniture stores at substantial discounts. Also, make sure that you have adequate lighting and that the operating desk is at a comfortable height. The dollars you spend will pay dividends every time you go on the air.

It doesn’t matter how much you have spent in building your station. What is the most important is if you are comfortable in your setup. Imagine, you will be spending most of your time sitting in front of your radio and it will not make sense even if you have bought the most expensive equipment if you are not even comfortable in your station.

I hope this is a big help to those who want to start building their first ham radio.