Last chance to make a sked with us before we go may be during the drive up tomorrow. Note that we may be able to rely on KST, the internet, or phone from Mull but I don’t know for certain until we get there, so if you want to be certain of working us on 10GHz, email me with a day and time soon. john@…
I seem to have missed some emails from Alan GM0USI who so far is the only one who’s given us a firm date and time for a sked. That will be Monday at 1930 on 10368.120. 73 John G4BAO
Martin Butler (M1MRB) and Colin Butler (M6BOY) produce a great podcast for radio hams and for some time the Camb-Hams have been talking with them regarding an interview which Lawrence M0LCM, Dominic M0BLF and Gavin M1BXF managed to have a few weeks back. The podcast has just been released S05E09; http://goo.gl/NgL7K
We have never done schedules before as we are very adhoc in our operation which is very open to what we want to do on the day and how the HF bands are going, plus my (M1BXF) fishing schedule The general VHF operating schedule will be starting around 6pm on Saturday, all day Sunday then mornings and evenings during the week, or when there is a scheduled contact or an opening, fingers crossed.
Our preferred frequencies (all +- QRM) and modes are;
400w / 6
160w / 7
400w / 17
We may transmit a CW beacon on the above frequencies when no scheduled contacts are being made.
400w / 6
160w / 7
400w / 17
Other data modes on request. The 6m and 4m antennas will both be on the same mast and therefore must point in the same direction.
As Sir Humphrey Appleby of “Yes Minister” famously said,
“Our policy will be not to have a policy … and that will be flexible”
This sort of applies to 10GHz operation on Mull, but my plan is to operate so as to catch you poor unfortunates that have to work for a living, so look for us on ON4KST between 7am and 9am and 7pm and 10pm in particular. Also you can call us on any of the VHF bands if you hear us, and ask for a 10GHz test at any time we have the 10GHz gear connected up
That said, If you want a particular sked, i.e if you plan to go out portable, to save a cold lonely night on a hilltop, email me NOW firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll set it up.
One time we will NOT be available for 10GHz is during Tuesday’s 144MHz UKAC.
And finally do remember, this is a fun trip for me, so don’t get grumpy if I decide to go for a walk in the hills or have a day trip to Iona or Fingal’s Cave when you want to work us. AGREE A SKED and I’ll be there as long as the equipment is working
As well as our usual operation on HF, this year’s trip to Mull will see us active on 10GHz (3cm) – a first-time activation for IO66 square. Today, John G4BAO, Rob M0VFC and Gavin M1BXF tested the kit that John’s been busy building – and it all worked!
The setup is an FT-817 as the driver, DB6NT transverter locked to a 10MHz GPS disciplined oscillator, 10W PA feeding a dual 10/24GHz feed to a 60cm ex-Sky dish (about 5W of transmit power actually makes it as far as the feedpoint of the dish). The transverter and PA are mounted at the top of mast along with the dish, so power, 10MHz and 144MHz all run down to the van.
John began by aligning the dish against the nearby GB3CAM beacon – a fantastic signal, even with a screwdriver as the antenna – before we mounted it on Flossie’s mast for some more realistic tests.
G4BAO aligning the 10GHz dish
We enjoyed QSOs with G4CBW (IO83ub), G4KUX (IO94bp, our best DX at over 300km), G4BEL (JO02bi… OK, not such an impressive distance but great to chat!) and G4LRP (IO93ho). Bob, G8DTF heard us, but sadly we didn’t complete a QSO – our receive not helped by us having to beam straight at a rather noisy comms site in his direction!
If you think 10GHz is all about line-of-sight contacts between hilltops, and wide-band FM or inaudible signals, think again – here’s a short video of parts of a couple of today’s contacts to give you a flavour of the higher microwave bands:
And if I didn’t need to convince you of that, because you’re already QRV on 10GHz and would like a sked while we’re on Mull at the start of May, let us know – we’d be delighted to try and work you.