To promote and explore the hobby of amateur radio. Providing quality training for all amateurs and in all aspect of the hobby.

Hunton Steam Gathering

Sat, 15/09/2018 - 10:02 -- andyripley

Yes finally, we did it. A steam rally, just the place for steam powered radio.

No we didn't have as much room as previously experienced at the Vintage Machinery Rally, so the antenna situation was less than ideal. The VHF antenna worked very well, but hanging the 80m loaded dipole didn't work and we had problems getting out. I suspect that most of the RF was going to warm the ground.

The weather wasn't too good on Saturday, but the awning kept the rain off us and the tea kept flowing. The Flea Market brought me a nice gas lantern of fairly epic output.

Frankenstein's Antenna

Fri, 16/09/2016 - 07:45 -- andyripley

For those who have large antennas, it's bound to happen. Gradually over the years you will collect a pile of broken bits. As Brimham hadn't had a go at 6m it was decided that after a session of messing about with a dipole at the farm, it might be an idea to build one using the pile of bits.

The boom was part of an old antenna and the elements reusued from broken parts. Fixings varied, including the use of cable cleats to hold the thinner parts.

It made a session of the UKAC a bit more productive, and where the operation is from qualifies for SAGHOTA.

UKAC - why bother?

Sun, 21/02/2016 - 19:00 -- andyripley

Yes we can roll out loads of excuses.
"There's no-one on VHF SSB any more" which is partly true after all licencees were granted access to HF, but no real reason to leave it out altogether. Some new rigs are able to do VHF and UHF multimode, and it's something you could do - right?

Antenna woes

Sun, 29/11/2015 - 15:43 -- andyripley

It was last Monday night. The receive signal strength of GB3HG wasn't its usual full set of bars on the rig and I wasn't getting into the box very well. It had been very wet, so I'd assumed my coax (of unknown vintage) had finally died.

Cancelling those excuses

Wed, 14/10/2015 - 17:23 -- andyripley

There's something to be said for a sunspot minimum, or upcoming one. You could of course just expect to not make any contacts on the higher HF bands for a few years and mutter on about not having the room for low band antennas etc.
There will be the occasional contact on such as 10m and 6m but having modes other than F-layer propagation, it's just that you may have to put the thought of getting VK or ZL on the back burner for a while. Maybe the odd hop into Europe, but no real DX perhaps.

N1MM+ 1.0.5210 Undocumented feature!

Tue, 22/09/2015 - 21:22 -- andyripley

If you're on Windows 7 and N1MM+ says there's today's latest version of it's logging software - DON'T DO IT.
It loses the port numbers, so it doesn't connect, it just gives whatever port numbers in the list it thinks it has, not the one that's actually used to connect to the radio.
Stay on an earlier version and resist the idea of updating. It's not the computer as HRD works just fine on COM4 but N1MM+ doesn't show that port here.
N1MM+ doesn't appear to have a "report a bug feature" on their website.
The "non-plus" version works fine here.

It's not square

Mon, 14/09/2015 - 17:09 -- andyripley

My portable nemesis is 6m. I did have a 3 element Yagi, but I never managed to get it to work properly, so was sold to Sam who seems to have made it work. Never mind, it was a bit too big. I wanted something a little more practical. A Moxon square, though it's anything but. Even an HB9CV for 6m seems too big - though my 2m version works fine.
After searching the net and finding a suitable design I them made a trip to the local Electrical wholesalers and bought a kit of 20mm conduit bits. The whole let was then cut to size and then slotted together.


Wed, 02/09/2015 - 16:51 -- andyripley

Last month I was away for the week and decided to try operating from the North Yorkshire Moors, with a little success, it was worth trying and I gave a few points away from my spot by the side of the A169 at the Hole of Horcum. This month I was at home, and decided it's worth having a high spot as I'm only operating a modest setup (ancient FT290R, 30W linear and an HB9CV antenna).

Almost QRN'd out

Sun, 23/08/2015 - 18:21 -- andyripley

22nd August 2015. The Yorkshire Dales. It's 2100hrs. We're stuck in a field with a thunderstorm going on around us. I should have at that time been dropped off at Cam Farm ready to do some walking.
Graham G0SCV had walked over from Horton, and right through the middle of the heaviest rain and most active thunderstorm to hit the area this year. I missed the rain, as I was stuck at Buckden.

Is my HF radio deaf?

Sat, 15/08/2015 - 01:10 -- andyripley

You know the scenario, you put the radio on and you can hardly hear anything. You check the connections, maybe take down the antenna and suspect that you've broken something. Well it's not your fault.
We have still had some action on 28MHz, but you might have to be working harder to take advantage of it. Like listening for the beacons for one. You could even keen an eye open on some of the  DX spotting websites. However it may be a case of just tuning round and working someone who nobody has noticed yet.


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