Gareth began by asking members how many used computer logging. The answer was interesting in that only about half of the members present indicated they did. He then continued by noting that although logging is no longer required, in most instances, by Ofcom, there are numerous reasons to keep a log. Those working toward awards need to keep a close tally of the stations they have worked, both for awards and to send and receive QSL cards. PC logging might be for personal satisfaction or data analysis as well as social history. It was noted that eHam lists no fewer than 140 PC logging programs, some free and others to buy. It would appear that Log4OM is one of the most popular free logs, followed by Ham Radio Deluxe which used to be free but is now closely maintained, for a price. Gareth asked how many members used their PC logging program to control their rig and the uptake was much less than half of those present.
Several screen shots of Log4OM and Ham Radio Deluxe were shown in order to point out the info provided while operating and logging.
Gareth finished by giving a short rundown of logs that can operate remotely. Using his phone as an internet hot spot, he connected to his home rig and tuned around the bands but didn’t make transmissions.
A copy of Gareth’s presentation can be seen by contacting Ken for a link. (Members only)
Geoff, G4CEP started the evening’s aerial presentation by showing photos of his CobWeb which he assembled and tested with the help of another club member. Other aerials at his location include a G5RV, a dipole, a long wire and the single driven element from a tri band beam which, although redundant is acting as a ‘place holder’ for a planned mini-beam.
Dennis, M0JXM then followed with a detailed description of the equipment used in his shack. It would appear that most amateur bands are catered for with exception to the very high end of UHF. Some of the equipment, such as that used at LF, has been either designed or modified homebrew type and it doesn’t look out of place next to his commercial items!
Group discussions followed about plans for the club’s 70th year celebrations.
Don, G4LOO began by asking: What is an SNA? The answer, basically, a Spectrum Analyser plus a Tracking Generator. The SNA differs from a Vector Network Analyser because it only resolves the amplitude of a signal, while the VNA can resolve the phase angle, as well. Don’s winning entry in the Kit section of the Construction Contest started with a design by DuWayne, KV4QB. This project is based on a number of inexpensive modular components, the brain of the device is the Arduino Nano. Don bought all the modules on the internet at relatively low prices and together they made up his kit. The finished product is impressive.
Victor’s Week-end Special project was a tuneable field strength unit with a digital display. The difference is that almost all the parts were sourced from his junk box! The case was an old Amaretti biscuits tin which was rather small considering what Victor had planned to put inside. A tag strip holds the components while the digital display is mounted in a square hole in the lid. The problem was cutting the square hole, but it was simply knocked out using a wood chisel and hammer!
Paul, G8IUG’s entry in the Major Project class was a 20m SSB transceiver with 5w output from the CS Series of Kits by RDS. Other modules from the same source were included, such as a voltage monitor with readout on the front panel and the CR kits Sandwich Digital VFO utilising an Arduino Pro Mini , (insert)
This week’s ‘members participation’ was a discussion of rigs members have known over the years. There were radios which were considered to be very good and some classed as ‘could have been better’. In total eight members made presentations which included actual items of equipment as well as historic photographs. In the end, we ran out of time, so, at some point in the future there will be another discussion of rigs, part two.