25 July 2013 – Summer Break

It is not my intention to write a blog each week during the club break, but this week I wanted to remind members that the IOTA contest is on this week end, 27 – 28 July. Lots of DX stations have been getting ready and there is usually some good DX to be made either during the contest or before and after. If you’re not sure of the rules, have a look at:   http://www.rsgbcc.org/hf/rules/2013/riota.shtml

In any case, have a look for GW2L on Holy Island (EU124).  If you don’t recognise the callsign, look at the club front page and click the link: http://www.g3svj.org.uk/

18 July 2013 – Digital Mysteries

This meeting saw a temporary change of venue as the club meeting was held at Smiths Metals, Biggleswade.  On a hot evening, the air conditioned conference room made a considerable impression on members who had come to hear Ken, G4YRF present an update on the state of digital communications to the gathering, most of whom either had not tried digital or had not followed it enthusiastically.  A brief outline of modes followed with some indications of personal preferences.

The subject then turned to interfacing a rig with the PC or laptop indicating the need for isolation and sound control.  Methods were outlined to enable the proper settings to ensure the soundcard audio did not over drive the rig, nor visa versa.

Several website were cited that describe modes, some with recordings and some with watefall pictures to help identify new modes.

 Our host, Steve, M0DYR then took some members on a short tour of the works. A more complete tour has been promised for later in the year.

 The information given in this PowerPoint presentation was extensive and will be available to members who would like a copy.

5 July 2013 – A Day to Remember!

Our members get up to all sorts of activities not directly connected with our club.  The following, as you can see, is from his station journal:


(EXTRACT from Station Journal of Victor G3JNB)

 ————–RSGB ‘CENTENARY DAY’ JULY 5th 2013————

 Audrey and I left home for Bletchley Park at 10.15, arriving at 11am to be directed to the VIP parking area not far from the Mansion.  We were in nice time for the 11.30 lecture by Paul Cort-Wright, G3SEM on amateurs in the radio security services which included a remarkable expose on the role of the ‘Voluntary Interceptors’ and the story of how they have been deliberately ignored in the Bletchley story.

Audrey had on her colourful new summer outfit and I wore my panama hat with the light suit. The sun blazed and it was a delightful day.

A light lunch of excellent sandwiches was served to invited guests and we sat with Roger Hall, publisher of ‘Practical Wireless’, and Paul Bigwood of Yaesu UK.

We adjourned to the garden behind the National Radio Centre (Audrey had a brief glimpse of the displays)  where  I was presented to the Lord Lieutenant of  Buckinghamshire, Sir Henry Aubrey Fletcher,  the High Sheriff  Sir Stuart Hampson and to Councillor Brian White,  Mayor of Milton Keynes.  The line up of just twelve persons included the Presidents of the IARU, the ARRL and the licencing Director from OFCOM…and me!  The Society’s Patron HRH, The Duke of Edinburgh was to have been our guest of honour but he is presently indisposed.

It seems that I was invited to participate as the ‘Long Serving Member’  (60 years to the day) and my earlier activities and work for the Society.

Sir Henry unveiled two plaques.  The first to the ‘VRs’ and the second to commemorate the RSGB Centenary.  In his speech he fleetingly referred to the Society’s ‘Oldest Member present (me) whom he had just met’!

We strolled to the marquee and saw the children working of their ‘Raspberry Pi’ receiver project and bought a copy of Elaine’s brilliant ‘CENTENARY’ book which, later, together with President Bob Whelan , I had her autograph the title page. An entry on page 49 records the first public demonstration of amateur television on 21st April 1950 at the ‘Shefford & District Short Wave Society’ by Ivan G2DUS. The press were most impressed and the event was followed by a JUNK SALE! Those were the days!

Afternoon tea was served to us in the Mansion where we sat in company with Past President  Hilary Clayton Smith and Paul Bigwood..

The afternoon concluded with a splendid power point presentation by Elaine Richards ,  Editor of  RadCom, on historical aspects of the  Society entitled ‘A Dip into the Archives’.

Moving on the Horwood House, where we stayed overnight for the Centenary Dinner, we found that we had been given a lovely large room, overlooking a garden,  albeit a long distance and tiring walk from the centre.

Arrayed in my dinner jacket and with Audrey in a stunning white silk dress (Greek), we descended at 6.30 and were entertained in the bar by a ‘Table Magician’ before all moving to the steps of Horwood for a group photograph which was intended to reflect similar pictures from the Society’s 1930 events.

Audrey and I were guests at the table named for the scientist ‘Ernest Dawson Ostermeyer G5AR’, hosted by Chris Danby of the Norfolk ARC (RadCom advertising agent).

The special commemorative menus featured the same fare as the first London Wireless Society Dinner.  My copy has eight signatures of the ten present.

Important formal speeches and presentations were made.  Our President gave a rousing address and toasted the ARRL and IARU presidents and our own Society  Then he went on to name me as ‘The member who had joined the Society sixty years ago today!  They gave me big round of applause!

This historical event has meant a great deal to me as it has reflected much of my own experience and pleasure of the sixty five years of my life during which I have enjoyed radio as a hobby and as an advertising  professional.

100th at NRCVictor and Audrey arrive at the National Radio Centre

Victor meets LLofB

G3JNB is presented to Sir Henry by the President of the RSGB  (Photo by Richard Constantine G3UGF)

Victor&AudreyLater, at the Banquet


11 July 2013 – 2M Pedestrian DF Hunt

Last year’s 2m DF hunt winner, Michael, M6MBU was the fox this year. Unfortunately I was unable to attend, but I should be able to relay the results as soon as I receive them.

And the results are:

The winner of the 2M pedestrian DF hunt was Terry, G4UEM who arrived at 20:32, followed by Don, G4LOO at 20:33 and Steve, M0DYR at 20:44

4 July 2013 – SSB NFD!

Stewart, G3RXQ presented his plan for the club’s ‘re-entry’ in the SSB NFD on 7th and 8th of September.  Years ago, this contest was a fixture in the club’s programme, along with the CW NFD. Situations changed through the years and the club has not made an entry for a very long time.

 Using a PowerPoint presentation, Stewart showed how this contest coincided with the All Asia contest and showed how we could enter both, although each required a different (specific) report.

 The proposed layout of antennas were shown on the map and discussions followed about the merits of various locations.  The station equipment would be supplied by Stewart and consisted of a completely integrated station. One button could be used to set all the correct settings on the rig, amplifier, log and associated equipment. So, less tuning up time and less chance of using the wrong settings.     A BBQ has also been arraigned to round off the weekend!