Arran DX’Pedition ‘11
For previous DX’Peditions go here…
The Camb-Hams were formed in early 2006 as the social and public-facing side of the Cambridgeshire Repeater Group (CRG). The Camb-Hams are made up of people from many of, but not exclusively, the various Cambridge radio groups including CUWS (Cambridge University Wireless Society), CDARC (Cambridge and District Amateur Radio Club) and Cambridge RAYNET. More info on the main Camb-Hams site.
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The Camb-Hams are off to the Isle of Arran for the 2011 DX’Pedition. The dates will be from May 1st till May 8th 2011 from a cottage on the west of the island near Balliekine IO75HO. As usual, most HF bands will be activated with SSB, data and some CW (but please be patient!). VHF operations will be on 6m and 4m SSB/data (JT6m), and being a little more south than Harris, we will also activate 2m both SSB/data (FSK441). We may also have time for 2m and 70cm satellites.
Some portable VHF activations will be done around the island with the group’s portable operating shack Flossie. This year the CRG has a new callsign – G6PYE – which we will use alongside the traditional G3PYE. As the activation is in Scotland, the prefix becomes GS for a club station in Scotland, so listen out for both GS3PYE/P and GS6PYE/P.
Check out the other pages of diary entries using the links above the comments section on the page…
So I’ve done some basic log analysis for the Arran DX’Pedition, more will follow but for now I’m looking mainly at the QSO rates vs time. You can see the full analysis here in PDF form.
To keep things easier to display [in the graphs] the report is based on 30 minute snapshots i.e. 09:00 till 09:30.
Note: All times are UTC.
The analysis starts with a graph showing the total QSO number in the log overlaid with the total number of QSOs being made per time of day for all stations, It’s interesting as it shows the operating pattern for the whole week.
The second graph again shows the total number of QSOs being made per time of day for all stations but this time averaged for the whole week which highlights the operating patterns such as lunch at approx 12:30 each day and then dinner at 17:30 to 18:00. No QSO were made at all about 05:30.
The third graph titled ‘Operator [Week] Averaged QSO Count vs Time Of Day’ shows the individual operators QSO count averaged over the whole week. This is interesting as it shows things like the majority of Colin G4ERO’s QSO were made between 23:00 and 03:00 UTC, Martin G3ZAY and Steve M1ACB were the only 2 operators to work anything between 03:30 and 06:00
After that we have all the individual operators QSO count vs time of day for each of the days of operation which clearly shows the different operating habits of each person.
This is only the first part of the log analysis and more will come with details of trends like countries worked vs time of day and similar…
As you might know on our way back from Arran we popped into the Magnum radio rally where we met a few known callsigns and as Gavin is from these parts as few familiar faces too… One face was Dick GM4PPT who we regularly work on the 2m RSGB UKAC who took this picture.
Left to right: Terry G3VFC, Mark M0MJH, Colin G4ERO, Rob M0VFC, Pete 2E0SQL, Gavin M1BXF, Bob G1SAA, Lawrence M0LCM, Steve M1ACB, Martin G3ZAY and [other] Colin G8TMV
One of the rarely-mentioned heroes of any DX’pedition is the sub-manager at the QSL bureau who has to deal with all the incoming QSL cards!
Of course, it’s us that reply to the cards, but at least we get the benefit of having enjoyed a stunning week or two away in the Scottish islands, or somewhere equally attractive. But there’s a couple of important steps before the cards reach us – and that’s those who work for the national QSL bureaus.
In the case of the RSGB, after cards arrive in the UK, they are first sorted into several large groups, perhaps all callsigns starting “G4″, or all “G6″ calls with suffixes A-M. Each of these groups is then managed by a – voluntary – sub-manager, who sorts them into the individual envelopes provided by the amateurs the cards are destined for.The QSL manager for G(S)3PYE and G(S)6PYE is Rob, M0VFC, which means that cards sent “Via M0VFC” (please!) end up with Wayne, M0WAY, who sub-manages M0MAA through M0ZZZ. Anyone who wonders how a QSL sub-manager should handle things – look at how Wayne does it! He runs a mailing list to let people know when new boxes of cards arrive from the main bureau, updates them when they’re sorted, again when they’re posted, and emails those who have run out of envelopes. Always forgetting to send off some new envelopes to your sub-manager? No problem: there’s a PayPal link on his website to save you the hassle!
We’re just seeing the bulk of the Harris 2010 cards start to arrive via the bureau, so the most recent batch of cards was large. Again, no problem for Wayne – he suggested I send him a “float”, and he uses that to buy the most sensible postage as required.
So thanks, Wayne, and all those who work in the IARU QSL Bureau network – you really are stars!
(We worked Wayne a few times on Arran this year – so needless to say, his QSL cards were the first to arrive through the bureau for 2011!)
Paul M3JFM has posted some videos of GS3PYE/P contacts, recorded from his home in Oxford, UK. The GS3PYE/P operators include Pete 2E0SQL, Rob M0VFC and Steve M1ACB.
Please go to Paul M3JFM’s YouTube Channel to view the videos.
Juan YV4BCD also recorded GS3PYE/P on 20m from Venezuela (Operator Colin G4ERO).
GS3PYE/P – 20m (from Venezuela)
We have analysed the GS3PYE/P and GS6PYE/P logs using Clublog and are extremely happy to report that we had a total of exactly 9100 QSOs from 108 DXCCs and 7380 distinct callsigns. The number of countries per band was as follows :
If you have a Clublog account, you can view the full analysis here
We are all incredibly grateful for the 7380 individual stations who called us while we were operating from the Isle of Arran. We would also like to especially mention the 266 QSOs with M3, M6 and /QRP stations – it really was great to speak to you.
The dxpedition was a very enjoyable success because so many people took the time to contact us, many of them making the extra effort to work us on a number of different bands. Thank you.
Bob G1SAA was busy recording time-lapse videos of some of the GS3PYE/P operators while we were on Arran. He’s posted them, together with more videos of the shack and antennas, on the Camb-Hams YouTube Channel
Here are some direct links to videos of some of the operators in action :