Saturday, June 13, 2015

6M Last week and RaDAR

ES on 6m last week after my first 2 contacts was not too bad. As seen in the map I made several QSOs across Europe and into Scandinavia. Contacts were made in SSB, JT65A and CW. It has been a long time ago I was this active on 6m this much.

Above is what my screen is showing when DXing with WSJT-X on JT65 digimode. The frequency was very busy at the time I made a screenshot.

One of the subjects inside the radio hobby really catching me is Rapid Deployment Amateur Radio. It is a kind of adventure radio were you have to move build your station as fast as possible, make 5 QSOs. Break up as fast as possible and move to the next location to do it again. If you like contesting and/or want to have some physical excercise instead of only sitting in front of a computer screen this could be a nice challenge. Find more about this on Eddie ZS6BNE's website.

I think if you really want this you need a portable station that can be setup in 5 minutes or less. It sounds easy
Portable station in the cycle bag. Orange
box on top is my lunchbox. Left suitcase
with TRX/acc. Right bag with tripod and
tube with MP-1.
but it isn't. You have to exsercise if you really want to be on air ready for a QSO in 5 minutes. And don't forget breaking up should also not exceed 5 minutes. Those 5 minutes are my personal opinion of course. Just to see if it can be done. Last day of my working week I decided to pack and have a try, it was beautifull weather just what you need for such a actvity. My lunchbreak gave me 40 minutes radio time.
I setup the Yaesu FT-817 with SWR meter and 5Ah 12V battery -> 5m RG58/U coax -> tripod with Superantenna MP-1. It took me 6 minutes to setup, too long!

The plan was to be active on 6m. But couldn't get a reasonable SWR. I moved to 10m then were SWR was perfect but then it was 10 minutes later. Almost got a QSO with YT3T but he didn't get my call in the end, too weak. I moved to 15, 20 and finally to 40. There were not many on the band so I ended without any QSO. I decided to pack which took me another 7 minutes and difficulties to get the MP-1 back in the tube. I really need to exsercise and need to figure out how to get a good SWR on 6m with this setup.

Rapid deployment radio sounds not that difficult but it is not easy either. You need to setup/break up in a good order. Exsercise is the magic word for that. It has been a very interesting experience and I will think it over to be more successful next time.


  1. I agree rapid deployment is fun! The trick is to mount your rig, SWR meter, etc permanently attached to a box with flaps to open. I've reduced the connections to just the power banana plugs, so the rig takes 10 seconds. The antenna is either a vertical for the band of choice, or a vertical delta loop. Both are up in 2 minutes, maybe less if the ground is more solid than wet sand. Something to wrap the antenna wire around is usually a great help!

    1. I absolutely agree. Though how to make that kind of box that still fits my cycle bag. It should also be light. A alu frame would be a solution may be. There are many ways to rapidly setup a /p station. Thanks for the idea. I'll think about it. 73, Bas

  2. Thanks for sharing. I do a lot of SOTA and it normally takes me 10min to assemble. The 1 box and 1 connection system is probably the best. My friend EA2BD has a quick deployment system - under 1kg - CW only.
    For me it is one of the open subjects. Next project probably. I will look into radar to pick up some ideas for a quickly deployable aerial.

    1. Hello Angel, the superantenna MP-1 is a very quick deployable antenna. Not the best antenna, but it works with a little patience. And it is small and light which is very important. Another good antenna would be a endfed wire. But you need a tree or a fibreglass mast to install it. 73, Bas


Thanks for your comment. Bedankt voor je reactie. 73, Bas