Update: Success! 12/15- On the first shot I got a 1oz fishing weight over one of the highest branches of my Cottonwood. Pulled the rope over then lifted my antenna. it is 3:00 pm . not much action, but my SWR is good. Will try again later.


Earlier this year, high winds took down my Ultimax DXtreme antenna. Being a wire antenna on a residential lot, I ran it up into the highest branches of the Cottonwood behind the house. So , now that fall has cleared the leaves from the 50 ft, Cottonwood I am ready to get it up there.

The method I will employ involves a slingshot, a fishing pole and a one ounce weight.  Simply put, tie the weight to the fishing line. release the reel. Pull a good amount of line from the pole. load the weight into the slingshot. Find the highest V branch and let her go. with a little luck or a couple tries the line will be in the V, but probably hanging across numerous branches. So you reel in your “catch”  carefully until you have cleared all but the V, then release. It should drop more or less straight down.

Next you pull out a spool of Antenna Support Rope. A strong polyester weather resistant rope. Tie that to the fishing line and pull it over the V and down to you. Easy, right?

Now tie your Antenna end to the rope with a proper insulator. assuming the other end of you antenna is attached to you ham shack. Pull the rope from the other end to get your antenna suspended at a proper height. Give it some slack then you will need to tie off the end of the rope to the tree or fence or something permanent, You will have the ability to lower your antenna for maintenance, adjust the tension so winds take it out.

Tune up your radio and enjoy.



The best known and most copied Japanese Wood block is probably “The Great Wave off Kanagawa” by Hokusai created in 1831. I think it is right up there with Picassoo’s “Starry , Starry Night” as far as public popularity.  You can see 3 boats being tossed below a large wave, Mount Fiji is in visible in the background. Mount Fiji is often featured in Hokusai’s work but usually dominates the scene. Here it is diminutive. This was the first in the series “Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji.” The inscription in the box top, left reads: “Thirty-six views of Mount Fuji / On the high seas in Kanagawa / Under the wave.”

Doing a thorough appraisal of my Dawn Redwood, and conversing with other Bonsai people I decided that my Redwood was absolutely pot bound and looking a little thin and undernourished. I pulled it from the pot and set it on the ground, covering it with a loose garden soil. Fall is moving in and it is starting to turn. Hope it weathers well.


I bought a Dawn Redwood at the Dallas Bonsai Society annual auction in November 22. Dawn Redwoods are the oldest living tree on earth going back more than 5 million years. They were thought to be extinct until 1940 when they were discovered. They can grow to over 100 ft tall but make great bonsai because they are so hardy. Mine is about 28 years old, standing 30″ tall.  It is extremely root-bound and going to need some work in the spring.

We opened Superior Gun Care in 2015.  There is a long story about how a good friend, Bucky Roman convinced me to go in to the business with him. I will tell that one day.

Meanwhile I will share stories of interest, maybe some gun care tips and other various info.

One of the first creators of Japanese woodblock are  was Hishikawa Moronobu. He gathered the art of various artists and using wood blocks and ink was able to produce many copies of an artists work. These were sold to the Chonin class (affluent merchants, craftsman and workers) who were able to afford such luxuries to decorate their homes.  These required the skills of the artist, a skilled carver to cut the woodblocks-one for each color, the paper maker: each sheet made by hand, and the printer who applied the color inks, and finally a publisher to distributed the works. Because they were done by hand, effects like blending or gradation of colors were possible.


Two Beauties

Lobby of a Brothel

Beauty looking back.

  1 Reference https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ukiyo-e

Some years ago, I developed an interest in Ham Radio. I got a General Operators License, and almost immediately found myself a member of Garland, TX Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Services. (RACES). To get there I had to take some training in Amateur Radio Emergency Services.(ARES) A federal program to use radio operators to assist in communications during emergencies.

In June 2021, I purchased my first bonsai from a street vendor on my way to my gun shop in Plano. It was a juniper. Actually I later noticed the there were 2 separate trees in the tiny pot but to me it was a beautiful miniature vision of a windswept tree on a lonesome hill. I took it home and set it on my desk and then looked up how to care for it. The first thing I learned is that junipers grow best outdoors. They are not happy indoors, so I compromised and placed it on a window shelf where it would get plenty of sunlight.

The first principal in viewing a Bonsai is finding the front. I thought this image above was the front initially, but I also noticed there were 2 trunks and they were more visible when it rotated the pot 180°.

The second principal is keeping your tree trimmed into a pleasing form.  This was the result. They seem to be dancing.

Dancing Junipers