Friday, 26 May 2017

Prize giving and Jutberg 2017 radio rally

I had the opportunity to do the prize giving myself as Hans PE1BVQ did invite me to travel with him to the Jutberg radio rally. Hans did win the book "The complete DXer" when he finally found my location in the little give away contest I did last month. We had a great time at the radio rally searching for items we can use in our experiments and during the travel we talked a lot about the hobby and other things. If I never started this blog back in 2008 I would never have met Hans I guess. One of the great things that happened through writing about my radio experiments and adventures on the internet.

I made a small video with a impression of the radio rally and included some photos from items I found interesting.



Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Some solutions...

Sorry for not updating the blog for a few weeks. Other things besides the hobby occupied my time. Not that I was completely absent from the hobby. I removed the 10m HB9CV again and it was replaced with the Watson W2000 6/2/70 antenna for 6m mainly. Unfortanely so far I did not see much sporadic E coming this way. Although I was spotted in the Ukraine when the band seems to be closed! I've also been on MSK144 but only spotted a German and a English station. I probabely expect too much from this mode or I have to wait for ES or meteors.

Some solutions came up for the problems I encountered when operating portable in Denmark. First of all one of my colleagues on the job modified my tripod to mount the MP-1 directly on top just like the tripods superantenna is selling. Normally a tripod is provided with a plastic mount on which you can screw your camera, you can turn your camera then in several angles. Nice, but not strong enough to hold a long antenna in the wind. Now I just have a single 1/4" bolt on top of the tripod...

Another problem was how to handle a QSO on JT65/JT9 digimode with a extra prefix? The software is limited to just your call and when you're in another country you have a problem in handling a complete QSO as it just ignores for example OZ/. The solution came last week in a QSO with 5Z4/DL2RMC from Kenya. As you can see in the picture I tried to send 5Z4/DL2RMC TNX 73 but the software/mode is limited, confused as I was I clicked the wrong report message and quickly changed that to DL2RMC PE4BAS RR73. DL2RMC came back with his full call. So I assume not completely correct but when abroad you better send CQ OZ/PE4BAS (no locator as that is too long), in response there is no other possebility to send only your call without the extra prefix. For the opposite station it is important to finish with the full call like DE OZ/PE4BAS 73. Will think of that next time...

At the 4th day we were in Denmark the laptop lost his internet connection and since the internal clock from this old laptop has a 10 sec. delay every 5 minutes it completely lost it's time resulting in no decodes on WSPR anymore. I've thinking about this and this is also a problem when you want to do WSPR or JT modes in the field without a internet connection. As known these modes need exact timing from a highly accurate clock. So I was thinking about a small USB or bluetooth GPS receiver for this task. Together with IZ2BKT's BktTimeSync it should work. I will order a cheap keyring GPS receiver to test if it does and report about this later.


I finally combined PSK, JT and SSB logs and come till a total of 10 QSO from Denmark. That doesn't sound much but considering the setup and my holiday style operating I think it is well done.


Sunday, 30 April 2017

While we were away...

While we were in Denmark last week this huge windmill was build en visible from our Garden. So we went out to take a look nearby. This windmill is 200m high and supposed to be the largest one in our country. Several of these will be build in the Eemshaven near my QTH. This one can make 4,5MW of energy and produce for 5000 households.

Imagine in the last century and even before the highest building in our province was the Martinitower in Groningen city. It is (only) 100m high. This windmill is twice the height of the tower.

Look at the size of the large crane and truck at the feet of the mill. They look like tiny toys...




A view from the back of our garden...in the center you see the windmill...