Planning VHF/UHF NFD, 7 & 8 July 2012

There will be three stations set up in the Shefford A group: 23 cm with station manager Andy, 2M with station manager Stewart, and 70 cm, looked after by Steve and Brian.  The station managers plan to be available for the entire contest. The Shefford B station manager will be Terry running the 4M station till 10 PM on Saturday and then 6M on Sunday. As always, members are needed to operate.

This year there will be no paper logs!  All contact details must be entered directly into the electronic log running on the laptops.  Paul, who was heading the VHF/UHF NFD planning session pointed out that all entries must be absolutely correct in every detail or the entire contact will be lost.

Of course, there will be catering facilities on site for those who have signed the work schedule which includes setting up on Saturday, 7 July starting at 0900 UTC.  and packing up  on Sunday, 8 July 1400 UTC.

Members may attend even if they haven’t sign up!

21 June 2012, Club Project Update

Richard, G3NII started by explaining how the circuit worked and why certian components were used. He also explained why minor modifications were being introduced.  Ian, G3ORG followed by drawing a block diagram to show how areas worked with others.   Ian also had a test set up to demonstrate the effectivness of the project. Members then submitted their projects to be checked.

Paul, G1GSN who supplied the close up photos of the board says: The picture of the standing resistor is the new one – changed from 100 ohms to 33 ohms. Instead of mounting on the output (awkward), the resistor stands in the redundant hole of the noise switch. That moves just a little bit inboard and makes space away from PTT  input and the 12V supply. I thought it would be a good idea to show where the new C18(100pF) fits across the resistor R1(1k), hence the view of the solder side of the PCB.

I Heard That. . . Pardon! by Stewart, G3RXQ

Stewart’s presentation started with the ‘not so well known’ quote ‘I heard that… pardon!’ from an early 70s TV programme called ‘I didn’t know you cared’.  Stewart had a look back at the ‘good old days’ when there was a good chance that our transmissions might cause interference in a number of ways, while the interference we were experiencing was rather limited compared to modern times. Almost every day now, we hear of more ‘modern’ electronic wonders that cause more interference. So, what can we do about it.

Stewart outlined a systematic approach using flow charts to keep the search going in a logical fashion.  Apart from knowing where the interference was coming from and what to do about it, we learned that not all services are treated equally by Ofcom.  The three classes of protection status which saw the radio amateur as being ‘Protected from harmful interference’ gave us the feeling that we haven’t been completely left out of the protection process.

Of course, there are a number of ways we can deal with incoming interference ourselves; by removing the source, increasing the separation, using a separate receive aerial or by the use of filters and phasers etc. The receive aerials described  were loops, pennants and flags to minimise the received interference. All of which were described in detail.

At this point, Stewart decided it was time for tea and questions!

No Meeting on 7 June 2012

As you will have noticed there was no club meeting on  7 June 2012.

This was to give members a chance to be away for the Bank Holidays or Half Term break.

We will be ‘open for business’ next week, 14 June 2012, when Stewart will be giving his

presentation ‘I heard that, pardon’  – Sounds interesting!

Top Band DF Hunt

For the record, here is Gary’s report after the DF hunt on the 31st of May, 2012:

There were only two that found me, the rest being out-foxed by the
terrain; and the troubles with equipment!

The winner was Steve M0DYR. Stewart G3RXQ was second.

I was using a 2.5m long fibreglass whip on a magmount, itself attached
to the middle of the roof of my car. The whip used to be the top section
of a ‘Shakespeare Super Big Stick’ CB homebase aerial. I had tested and
loaded it before, but last night the matcher struggled to load the
aerial and keep the SWR down. With the need to increase the transmit
power, I had to sit there with the engine running as my FT-757GX appears
to be very voltage sensitive and not happy down at 12V. Had I realised,
I could have packed my 13.8V PSU and an extension lead, and powered it
all from my friend’s flat.

So where was I? Right at the end of Lucas Way. It is quite confusing as
you reach what looks like the end where you see a block of garages. You
have to follow it around the 180 degree turn and walk back on yourself
to actually reach the end. Ironically, if people had walked towards the
little playground and looked to their left, they would have seen the
fibreglass whip giving away my location.

Here are the co-ordinates:

52° 2’32.15″N