Tuesday, 27 April 2010

6m Contest

Tonight I had a go at the 50 MHz activity contest. Drove to my favourite spot in IO84KE and set up a horizontal dipole about 3 metres above the ground, facing south east. Using 5 watts SSB from my FT-817 I made 11 QSOs. The furthest was G0LGS/P who I think was in the Cleeve Hill area near Cheltenham (IO81).
All the other stations were in IO83.

It seemed like most people were using horizontal polarisation so it helped using the dipole rather than my usual half wave vertical.
Diversity FM's link on 48.525 MHz (narrow-ish FM) was S8 at my contest site, and there were some quite strong signals (>S5) off various baby monitors (where can't you receive at least one baby monitor signal?). Some other 48 and 52 MHz broadcast links could be heard but very weak. An odd thing I heard was on 50.370 MHz with what sounded like morse in FM, about S2 with some fading.
The Buxton beacon on 50.000 was S0 in CW/SSB and S2 on the FM meter.
Morecambe Bay mast from the contest site

On Sunday I went up Harter Fell (SOTA G/LD-028). For this activation I'd decided I was going to try mostly 144 MHz SSB QSOs so I made a dipole which could easily be set up to be slanted polarisation. This was to give both vertical and horizontally polarised stations a chance to hear me. Often people are limited to either one or the other. It did work OK and I made around 20 QSOs on 2m SSB, with only a couple of people on FM. For those horizontal signals I had to move the dipole around a bit because it was directional but for vertical ones it didn't really matter.
From Harter Fell I got a summit - summit QSO with G4MD and G4OIG who were both on Dent (G/LD-045). This is a chaser unique for me, and a summit which isn't activated a lot. Probably because it's out of the way for anyone who is a visitor to the Lakes.

On 28 MHz WSPR tonight I was received by G0MLC in IO83VJ (Stockport) at -25dB SNR.

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