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Special callsigns for amateur radio stations during 2012....

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details

The Radio Society of Great Britain and Ofcom have reached agreement on the optional use of special callsigns for two significant events during 2012.

queen-elizabeth-iib

For the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, all UK amateur stations will have the option of applying for a variation to their licence if they wish, to use a special prefix for a five week period. This will add or substitute the letter “Q” in the place of the Regional identifier in the callsign (MQ0OXO, GQ4RCG etc).



For the period of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games, a similar facility will exist for a seven week period, using the letter “O” (MO0OXO, GO4RCG etc)



Furthermore, calls in the series GB2012aaa will be available for Special Event Stations relating to the Olympics and licences will be issued for four “flagship” stations using the prefix 2O12A where “O” is the letter O, and a is a single letter relating to the location of the station.



If you are considering Qsl Cards for this event for personal, special event or club activities, Qsl Cards for these events will be available from both UX5UO and ON5UR. Details of special costs, batch sizes and style of cards can be found on the UX5UO Website, and ON5UR Website or contact Tim (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) or Charles (M0OXO) to discuss.

CQ WPX SSB Contest 2011 results

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details

What a nice surprise awaited me when I got home from work yesterday, the certificate for the 2011 CQ WPX SSB contest.


MW9W_2011_SSBWPX01Certificate
I entered from the farm using the clubs contest call MW9W on 15m only, just for a bit of fun and to keep the contest call aired. The result surprised me but here it is in all it's glory - a copy of the Certificate.

Charles, M0OXO, was also down for the weekend and he entered on 10M using his contest call of MW0X where he also got the 1st place certificate for his category - the certificate can be seen on his web page http://www.m0oxo.com/blog.html along with lots of his other news.

While Chris and Charles were having fun down on the farm, Ant, MW0JZE, was over in Jersey with some of his other friends having fun on the radio and also entering the contest where he also got the first place certificate for his category using MJ0JZE.

So a big well done to all the boys for their certificates and placings in this event.

Look out for some news coming shortly about our next get together and fun on the air.

New Years update

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details

Hello to all our friends around the world.

Happy New Year to you all too, a little late but we have all been busy. Some of us were down at the farm with Rob and Jane for the New Years celebrations, and had a fantastic time. Some photos were taken and will be added to the gallery shortly.

Rob with the farm and his Lambs arriving these past few weeks.

Ant with his Hexbeam building, a new one will be installed by Tim, Ant and Chris at the QTH of Pete - M0ILT - Next weekend so another Hex Nut on the band.

Charles, Tim and Chris are all part of the T32C QSLing team and have been knee deep in QSL cards for this activation back in October and November last year. We have been waiting on the printers for the cards on this one and apologise for the delay in getting them out to you guys.

Tony is busy at work and with his duties at CDXC, which again we are all members and worth joining this excellent DX group for the socialising and the bi-monthly digest (see our links pages for the CDXC website).

Chris also had a disaster in the new year where the short pole he was using from his rotator to the hex stub broke in high winds causing the hex to crash heavily to the floor. The Hex survived with minimal damage to the centre hub plate, thisDSC_2736 was the prototype plate which is now much improved and has been changed since Chris' build. The new plate will be fitted to the Hex in the next couple of weeks and Chris will then be back on the air. He has also put a Windom up for the low bands but the noise from the local houses is S9+ at times so he is looking to change theis mounting as soon as possible.

The lads are also planning some activations for this year so please keep looking at forthcoming activity and the blog for any updates on what they will be up to.

Many thanks for all your support in the past and we look forward to working you on the air soon.

Oh and once again I will mention Clublog and asking to join. SHDXCG is a closed group and we will only invite you to join so please do not try and add Strumble Head DX and Contest Group on Clublog as we will not accept you. Many thanks.

Another succes

Rob Johns
Rob Johns
Details

Well it was a pleasure to once again host the new years celebrations here at the farm.

New Years eve we held a party with not just the Strumble team and family but also with close friends from around the area, and surrounding farms. Everything went fantastic and all enjoyed themselves. Plenty of food and drink was available and my wife Jane once again excelled herself with her culinary skills.

Many thanks all and I wish you all the best for 2012

Rob, MW0RLJ

Seasons Greetings

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details As the 2011 year draws ever closer we like to wish all our friends around the world seasons greetings in their home language, and we do appologise if we miss yours off the list. A little earlier than usual with putting it up here this year so here goes.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Nadolig Llawen a Blwyddn Newydd

Buon Natale e Felice Anno Nuovo
Joyeux Noel et Bonne Annèe
Felices Pascuas y Feliz Año Nuevo
Vasel Koleda
Froehliche Weihnachten undein gluckliches Nues Jahr
Kala Christougenna Kieftihismenos O Kenowios Chronos
Boldoy Karácsonyt
Wesolych Swiat Bozego Narodzenia
Cestitamo Bozia
Boas Fiestas e um feliz Ano Novo
Nollaig Shona Dhuit
From all at the Strumble Head DX and Contest Group.

May we meet on the air sometime in 2012.

And remember we may be on the air sometime over the holiday period from the farm to celebrate the new year, and we will be on at other times for contests or just some fun.

Also watch this space for a announcement about a special dxpedition we are currently planning along with our yearly trip over to Ramsey Island.

Latest News and Update on Activities

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details Well we have been a little quiet here at the Strumble Head DX & Contest Group, although we have all been busy with daily life.

Tim and Charles are busy with the 4W6A QSLing and are awaiting the cards from the printers - hopefully within the next week so they can be posted out.
QSL-4W6A



















QSL-4W6A-BACK




Ant
has been inundated with requests for Hexbeams after the success of the antenna on the expedition, and as he only builds them to order he now has a nice waiting list. He also had a go in the CQWW Phone contest on 10M, again using his Hexbeam only.

Tony has also been busy with his duties following the trip to T32C with the FSDXA team, again I understand he has been on QSLing duties as part of the team.

Rob has been busy with is work on the farm, carrying out maintenance around the fences and hedges along with getting the fields ready for next years crops.

Chris has started a job where he works funny hours, starting at 01:00 and finish at 12:00. This is no good for DXing as he is away in the mornings for the Pacific openings, and asleep in the afternoons for the Carribean, South, Central and North American openings.

Oli is still down in Australia and is busy in his work down there.

And finally Villiam has been busy with his holiday cottage business in Slovakia. He also entered the CQWW Phone contest from his home station and was heard by all the other guys making at least one QSO with us all.

The boys are also planning to gather at the farm for New Year, or as many as can get there will. They will also have their wives and partners with them so it may be that they do not get on the air as this is going to be a social gathering for the families, and as usual photo's will follow.

One final thing. SHDXCG is a closed club and we do not accept new members unless invited in to the group, so any of you who try to join on CLUB LOG will not be accepted!!!!!

T32C - Christmas Island expedition

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details The Strumble boys are pleased to announce (although a little late) that one of their members is taking part in this major DXpedition by the FSDXA.

Tony, G4LDL, is out there enjoying the sun, the pile ups, and sadly not the beer - they have run out of Heiniken and are havingDSC_2528 to suffer Budweiser (according to latest reports). I can't see a problem with this as Bud is one of the groups regular drinks when at the farm or on Ramsey.

We wish all the T32C team a safe return home and look forward to hearing all the stories from Tony when he returns.

Strumble Head boys in 4W6A..(Day 16 Update/Qrt)

Charles Wilmott
Charles Wilmott
Details

cid_110920113394W6A-400x65
Well finally, several of our StrumbleHead DX Group start their journeys to Timor Leste today for the 4W6A Dxpedition on Aturo Island. Here is the final press release from Tim M0URX. One of the Strumble team will keep this blog updated as and when we hear from our guys so please call in again and find this entry as we add more to it throughout the next three weeks.

GOOD LUCK to all the Team, lets hope all goes well and it's a tremendous success, have a safe journey to all.

**We're missing you already Cry ** 73 de MC0SHL


DAY 1 - REPORT
So what route will I be taking to get to Timor-Leste? After a two hour coach trip to London, Heathrow Airport, there is a seventeen hour flight to Darwin, NT, Australia Via Singapore. I will be traveling with Ant, MW0JZE. In Darwin we will meet up with VK8NSB, Stuie, (Team leader) VK8DX, Oliver & VK2IA Bernd, The following day we fly to Dili, Timor-Leste where we have some work to do gathering supplies, generators need to be picked up and checked, fuel, food, water all needs to be bought.

The bulk of the equipment, including the linear amplifiers, the Titanex V160E vertical, Hexbeam and other antennas, left Darwin, Australia, on 6 September. It has all arrived safely in Dili, Timor-Leste, and is now awaiting the arrival of the team next week.

9M6DXX and 9M6XRO leave Malaysia on 12 September for a transit stop in Bali, from where they plan to be active 'holiday style' as YB9/G4JVG and YB9/GM3OO respectively. Unfortunately, due to a late change of airline timetable, they will not now arrive in Dili before the afternoon of Friday 16 September. The chartered boat taking the team and the equipment to Atauro Island has therefore been rescheduled to later that afternoon.


It is likely that only one or two stations will be on the air that day as the team will run out of daylight before all the antennas can be erected. The remainder of the antenna work will commence at first light the following morning (approximately 2115UTC on 16 September) and 4W6A should be fully operational by the morning (UTC) of 17 September.

4W6A will be QRV on all bands 10 to 160 metres, using CW, SSB and RTTY with up to four stations simultaneously. It is hoped that log search will be available, thanks to the Clublog facility (go to www.4w6a.com/qsl-information/log-search), but this is dependent on a reliable Internet connection being available on the island. Col, MM0NDX, is the pilot for 4W6A and is responsible for providing feedback to the team. He may be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. The QSL manager is M0URX, direct (SAE plus 1 IRC / $2), via the bureau, or LoTW. The entire log will be uploaded to LoTW as quickly as possible after the end of the operation or, if possible, also during the DXpedition. Direct or bureau QSLs may also be requested using the M0URX Online QSL Request Service (OQRS) at http://m0urx.com/oqrs (there is also a link from the 4W6A website at www.4w6a.com/qsl-information).

DAY 3 - REPORT

Well after the heads up from the rest of the Strumblehead Team, Rob, Chris and I managed to worked both of the guys down in Darwin. Tim was signing VK8/M0URX and Ant VK8/MW0JZE. Sig around 1300UTC were poor with heavy Qsb but an hour later and after a frequency shift they peaked 5/8 with me which also K800_13092011351gave Ants wife Laura the opportunity to get thro from her home station, great job!

Here is the latest report
from Tim 1400UTC 13th September);


After a long journey to Darwin Northern Territories Australia taking two days the plane finally touched down at 4.30am local time. Waiting for us at arrivals was Stuie, VK8NSB. We have spent most of the day acclimatising and making sure that we have no jet lag and have done this by staying awake all day and trying to keeping busy. Stuie has shown us around Darwin today which we have really enjoyed.

This evening we met up with Oliver VK8DX we all had lunch together before retuning to the shack to finish off preparing the K3s and K2 for the RTTY and CW operators of the trip.K800_14092011371 Having had very little sleep in 40 hours, we are off to bed, catch you all tomorrow.

Weather is baking hot as you would expect and we have purchased our hats (see photo) for our trip to Aturo Island in a few days.

Thanks also for all the guys that called in from the UK, EU and AS, great to have your support on the trip!






73 from Team 4W6A (M0URX)



DAY 5 - REPORT

Bernd, VK2IA, arrived from Sydney on Wednesday afternoon in Darwin. With 5 members of the team now at Stuie's house we had a meal and talked about the work ahead of us over the next 12 days. It had to be an early night for all of us as we needed to be awake at 3am to leave Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia for a 0545 hrs local time flight with Air North to Dili, East Timor. It was in the departure lounge that the team met with the Timor-Leste, Prime K800_part_4W6AMinister Xanana Gusmao our team leader VK8NSB Stuie had the chance to inform the Prime Minister of our DXpedition to Atauro Island. The team had a group photograph with the Prime Minister before boarding our flight (see photo left).

The team were met at the Dili International Airport by Kim & Tony our local support team and driven to the Dili Hotel where the team members had various pre DXpedition shopping and logistics matters to deal with. The final two members of the team are still in Bali, Indonesia prior to leaving for Dili on Friday. We had a meeting with Kim & Tony to discuss all the duties that we would need them to assist us with in getting the fuel over to the Island daily for the generators along with supplies for the team. The Hexbeam was delivered to the hotel, and the generators have been checked over for collection later.



DAY 6 - REPORT

Well the guys a little too busy today to give us any feedback, understandably they need to crack on with things at their side. I the meantime just a little addition to say that all is well and team arrived safely on Aturo Island. They have been very busy setting up and managed to get one station on the air around 10.45 UTC when they appeared on 21295.00. Signals were very good and gave a full 4 1/2 hours where the signals were 57 to 58 with me in Yorkshire (on my Hexbeam (MW0JZE build!). Tim, Steve and Ant were operating and had a huge pile-up resulting in a 5-20kc split at times. Tim and Oliver are concentrating on getting the Hexbeams up and we expect another update later today when they have time.

Well done guys, keep it up, a good start!


4W6A-400x65

DAY 8 - REPORT

We have just received some news from Col, MM0NDX, the pilot station.

The team have lost one of the generators (possible breakdown) so they are limited with what they do at the minute. They are also hoping to get to the internet cafe to upload logs and get any news back to us here in the UK.


We will advise when more is forthcoming.

The first logs from 4W6A are now on line at http://www.4w6a.com/qsl-information/log-search.html

 

 


DAY 9 REPORT (.....troubles in Paradise Cry )


The guys had troubles with the 20M station yesterday evening with several reports of very bad audio. The Pilot tried to make contact but without initial success. We hope now the situation is sorted. Here are a few lines from yesterday which try to explain yesterdays events and dont forget to check the Logsearch (click here) although uploads may only be every few days due to local internet and access issues;

''The main reason why contacts have been a little slow is that we had a malfunction with a transceiver, particulary on RTTY & SSB. We are now running without back up.

Due to a power failure not all the logs synchronised all QSO's logged for the upload. They are all showing on the network but did not all download. This will be rectified on next download/upload
.
''

Currently the team are experiencing difficulties on the 75/80M band from a yet unknown source. They will be back on 80M tonight (19th),or earlier if the issue is resolved, looking to work North America. Also, the generator issues are still hampering the team, so limited stations are the order.

As mentioned above, even now at 1530UTC there is still an issue with uploads to the 4W6A DXpedition log, there are qso's missing, but this DOES NOT mean you are NOT in the log. Hopefully, the problem will be resolved soon, but if in any doubt, please work 4W6A again. The team are working hard to get these jobs sorted but those of you who have been on these trips will realise how difficult it can be when you are in a foreign place without the comforts of home, please be patient!





DAY 10 - REPORT

The problems the team had with the audio on the 20M station rig was finally resolved yesterday. A chat with a team member said that it was in fact an issue with one of the K3's but after a full reset to 'factory defaults' it seemed to cure the problem. Up to yesterday evening (19th September) the team had logged just short of 15,000 qso's - Great job!!!

Further from the team (1030am UTC);

Next log upload in few hours. Partial log uploads only, due to generator issues. Feel free to work them again if you wish to confirm the band slots. The Internet is so unreliable, almost to the point of unuseable.

They will be QRV on 80 and 160 tonight for EU but still a very high noise level on 80, moreso than 160 which at this stage cannot be resolved.

Many thanks to everyone for their kind words and support in the last few days of problems.




DAY 11 - REPORT

Conditions continue to be good, though perhaps not quite as spectacularly good as on 16 and 17 September. As of 1130UTC today, 20 September, 4W6A has made approximately 18.5k QSOs.

We are aware that approximately 1000 CW QSOs made on the morning of 18 September on 20m and 30m are missing from the online log on Clublog. We hope to include these QSOs in future log uploads, but to be absolutely certain of a 'good QSO' you are invited to make another contact if you cannot find your call in our online log.

Last night was the first night without any local noise on 160m, and over 250 QSOs were made on topband to North America, including some East Coast contacts, to Europe as far west as the British Isles, and to Japan.  We should be on 160m each night now until 25 September.

We have received some reports of poor modulation quality on one of our SSB stations. We appreciate the feedback: the problem has now been solved. It would seem that the audio settings of one of the K3 transceivers had mysteriously changed in transit and we have now reverted to the factory default settings.


DAY 14 - REPORT


IMPORTANT UPDATE.... PLEASE READ.

This message was recieved from the Team yesterday as major problems were still being made as more qso's were uploaded. Yesterday for example, the 12M qso's from the previous day were all OK in the Logsearch. After the next upload however later in the day, most of the 12m Qso's were overwritten and NONE showed in the log.
PLEASE be patient. They guys are aware of the problem and the Pilot has hundreds of emails complaining about missing qso's. We have problems even contacting the team so as you can imagine, ammending logs is not possible at all at the moment. We understand that the main log is fine and the fault is with the partial updating. The full logs will be updated as soon as they have a stable internet connection and then we expect all the issues to be resolved;



'''16:36 UTC 23/09/2011
IMPORTANT UPDATE.... PLEASE READ.


It would again appear a problem with uploading logs from the jungle has taken place. We are attempting to establish comms with the team to ascertain exactly what the problem is, but for the moment we suggest all ops with "missing QSO data" keep details of your contact(s). As soon as we clarify the issue, the 4W6A website will be updated. ''


73 from/OBO Team 4W6A


DAY 15 - REPORT

Initial reports saying 4W6A QRT at 0200UTC today were incorrect. They have 40,200 QSO's logged at 1500z.
Most of the antennas are now done with just 12 and 15m dipoles remaining with one station.
Internet problems have plagued the team the past few days so next log upload will be completed when they arrive in Dili tomorrow.


DAY 16 - REPORT


LOG NOW FULLY UPLOADED.
The team of 4W6A have left Atauro, and are spending two days sampling the atmosphere and culture in the City of Dili. Two members are on their way home, John, 9M6XRO, and Steve, 9M6DXX.
The final log for 4W6A is online via this website, please be wary that until a stable connection is available, that some data may not be apparent.

The QSL requests are flooding in, and the comments received are wonderful, the dxpedition has been received amazingly well
especially some of the teams 160M operation. Hopefully soon, we will be able to post some pictures from Atauro, to give you a chance to see where the team operated from.



73 from/OBO Team 4W6A

MC0SHL on air from the farm

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details This coming weekend is a holiday weekend in the UK and some team members are heading to the farm for a short break.

They may get on the air, if the weather is bad, but it is primarily a chance for them to relax and unwind. Chris is travelling from the Midlands by train and is going to document, in photographs, the journey and the weekend which he will then share on here. He is hoping to get some more photographs of the farm and local area just to show all our radio friends around the world what a beautiful part of the British Isles the farm is located in.

Please give the team a call, but please do remember the DX Code of conduct when you do.

MC0SHL EU-124 Ramsey Island QSL Design

Tim Beaumont
Tim Beaumont
Details

MC0SHL EU-124 Ramsey Island. 6,000 QSO's were made by Strumble Head DX & Contest Group.
QSL-MC0SHL-2

Ramsey 2011 - Photos now in the gallery

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details
Photo's now added to the gallery of our trip to Ramsey Island EU-124. This is just a selection of the photos and vdeos that were taken during our stay on Ramsey island.

We all hope you enjoy them as much as we did being there and taking these photos for our memories.

Ramsey Island 2011 - The Story

Charles Wilmott
Charles Wilmott
Details


Ramsey Island 2Ø11; Trials & Tribulations

The Strumble Head team met at the Club House on Tuesday giving us time to test, prepare and pack the items needed for this year. As before, we always try to be more efficient and to take only the essential items to the island but also with consideration that we may have to stay longer than anticipated should the weather turn poor.
Sea and weather conditions were forecast to be very poor for the crossing on the Thursday morning but what a surprise to awake at 04:45 to see a beautiful morning on the Pembrokeshire Coast. The vehicles were loaded and we arrived at the Lifeboat Slipway around 07:30 where shortly afterwards the ‘Thousand Island Boat Charters’ arrived and we were on the Island by 08:00, amazing.
K1024_11062011078
After heaving all the gear to the top of the ‘harbour’ we then had the massive climb to the top of the Island where we bunk in a Barn (complete with broody Chickens!). Carrying 2 x Acom 1000 Amplifiers, 2 x FT1000MPs and worst of all the Kenwood TL922 to the accommodation is always a huge challenge. Fortunately the RSPB Warden and his wife (Greg & Lisa) are very accommodating and helped us up the hill with the Quad and trailer for which we are always very grateful.

We got off to a good start and as always, no one sets their stations up until all antennas are fully up and we work together to achieve this. K1024_DSC_1625The 2 x G3TXQ Hexbeams (built by Ant MW0JZE) were the first up and then we worked on the Windom for 40 and 80M. Everything ran as a well oiled machine and shortly after lunch, all three antennas were up and we moved inside to set up the stations.

Around 15:30 local we had all three stations on air and were qrv from ‘IOTA EU-124 Ramsey Island’. Chris G1VDP started the Digi station on the Windom working 30M, Ant MW0JZE started up on 20 SSB and Tim M0URX worked 15m SSB. Pile ups were pretty fast, the World Flora Fauna reference helping to boost them as well ;-) .
Almost immediately the station used by Chris suffered a major problem when lights on the FT1000MP flashed and the dedicated PSU and TL922 also shutting down. K1024_SNV34697Then worse to come was that dreaded smell – something was on fire. A subsequent check showed a hole on a transistor within the PSU and sadly totally  n-repairable for here at least. We were now down to two stations.

We worked very well and most stations had solid pile ups until late in the evening. Conditions weren't brilliant and most of the traffic was from EU with Yuri A65CA from Asia and a few stations from North America. Tim had a good run into SA and also the Caribbean but again, conditions definitely down. We had over  1000 in the log and with the two stations we were happy at that.

The next morning we all woke early after a terrible storm kept most of us awake during the night and we got started. We worked early on 40M SSB and then 20M SSB using both Acoms and running 300/400 watts. Rob MW0RLJ and Charles M0OXO decided to take a boat to the mainland to take the faulty equipment back and to collect a spare rig to replace it. The guys continued to work well and on their return the qso count was 2500.

It became very obvious that conditions were giving us some Sporadic E propagation so they started pushing the K1024_SNV34730higher bands (17, 12, 10 & 6) to give the Island IOTA to as many that required it. We had an amazing time, many stations commenting on how pleased they were to get EU-124 onto the new bands and in particular many ‘G’s that needed it as a new DXCC Band slot. Ant had been slogging away on 6M for a long time with a huge pile up and handed the Mic to Charles to continue. 6M continued to be very good and in total we finished with well over
396 qso's & 29 Countries on one run on 6m, the better one maybe CN in Morocco? Before we left we set ourselves  a target of 4000q’s for the whole trip and by midnight we closed on 4035 q’s, amazing and very pleased but that was to be short lived.

Charles got up the following morning (Day3) to find a problem. We had Voltage issues and it seemed the current was poor and not enough Amperage to run even the radio. We traced the problem to not  just one but both our generators had gone down, who would believe that? K1024_SNV34712The black cloud descended over us and we spiralled into depression. We worked several theories for several hours and eventually decided to run the spare ‘Robin’ generator only and to run 100w only. We never gave up the fight and tried many theories were explored over a pot of Porridge (thanks Jane!) and we came up with a plan! Greg (RSPB Warden) kindly offered to allow us yet another Generator which could give us 6Kva so the mood lightened and again, we weighed up our options over a chat until 0930………

Time moved on and by 1130 we were on air again. Conditions were OK and by 1.00pm we were running well as we approached 1300 and the beginning of the World Flora Fauna’ GreenDay’ event, We used all bands from 40m thro 10m and as we were using 12 & 17m, we were not in a ‘contest’ but just an ‘event’! All continued OK with runs predominantly into EU but with the odd DX station thrown in the mix. When 1500 came the bands just died with barely a trace of anyone on 20 thro 10m. In a few hours this eased and we pushed on on 20m, 17 and 40M. 40M was running very well with Chris on the Mic running 100w from the FT890 but only 20 and 17 really had any decent propagation to EU.
As the evening moved along we had another good run with many JA stations on 20M and a few down into OC with VK. We closed at 0030, filled the generator and after a few hours stargazing we slept………but not well!

K1024_SNV34817We were kept awake most of the night with the predicted ‘bad weather’. Sadly it was worse than expected. Torrential rain was hammering at the windows of the barn and roof and the wind was tremendous. First light at 0400 saw 2 x Hexbeams both leaning to the side and getting buffeted by the very strong wind. There was little we could do, they were unusable in that state so after a chat (again over a bowl of porridge) we decided they needed to be taken down to prevent damage. We all donned out wet weather gear and got stuck in. Taking them down took 15 minutes for each Hexbeam with us all working on the same antenna at the same time before moving on to the other. It initially appeared that the fault was either the rotators not being up to the strain of the wind or the strain on the stub mast and clamps were too weak. Another thought for another day but they were all down and we left the Windom in place. K1024_SNV34823We spent the remainder of the morning inside the barn, we dismantled all the equipment and packed it away just leaving the Elekraft K3 and the Windom to use later in the afternoon with a view to making the few required qso’s which would give us 6000 contacts.

The afternoon was poor but we worked through trying our best but pretty soon we ran out of time. We had the now (now traditional) 'Party' looming with invited guests joining us for supper and a few drinks. By the time 7pm came we had 11 people for supper including Greg & Lisa, Nia,Mike & Nicola. We must not forget the now famous Border Collie 'Dewi', now a celebrity after his debut on the BBC's 'Countryfile'!

After a lovely meal provided by Jane, we all had a few drinks (some more than others!) and spirits ;-) were high. Some of us were in a bit of a tacking by 0030, and with an empty bottle of Famous Grouse, one of Romiel and several bottles of red wine, we turned in for the night. At that point it seemed extremely unlikely that we would wake in 6 hours feeling well but Charles did and fired up the generator for a quick blast. Another 60 stations were logged on 40m which brought us to a final total of 6024 q's and the end of the 2011 trip. K1024_DSC_1846We got the gear down to the slip and from that point it took us 50 minutes to load the boat, do the crossing, unload at the Lifeboat Slip, carry the gear up to St. Justinians and to load the Van for the trip back to the farm.

CLICK HERE to take a You Tube tour around Ramsey Island


(Stats of this years trip can be found if you scroll down below this entry [in a few days time]).


It just leaves me with a few thoughts and thanks for the help we received this Year. Greg & Lisa Morgan (RSPB Wardens) were once again invaluable in help, planning, advice and in allowing us on the Island, two people who's performance, commitment and drive is outstanding and a major asset to the RSPB. 'Thousand Island Expeditions' once more gave their personal service to us and were extremely kind, a service recommended by us. Mike Chant and his crew aboard the 'Gower Ranger' also pulled out the stops with their prompt and personal service. Good luck to Nia Stephens (Assistant RSPB Warden) in her future career and not forgetting Mike and Nicola who give their time as RSPB volunteers. Finally a big thanks to all of you that worked us whilst on Ramsey Island. We were very pleased to give so many of you the new Band Slots, IOTA and WFF areas. I guess almost all stations on 6 meters would have been very pleased to get IO71hu in their logs so a good job all round. Some stations worked us on 7 band slots and many more with 6 contacts which was remarkable. Of course we wouldn't be without the odd negative comments either. Some made good points and others were well, just pathetic but all in all, a great trip to Ramsey in 2011.

Thanks to everyone from the Strumblehead DX Group; Rob MW0RLJ, Charles M0OXO, Tim M0URX, Chris G1VDP, Ant MW0JZE and of course Jane (our Support Staff ;-) ) who kept us fed with over 120 meals, doing this with 2 small gas rings on a Baby Belling stove and little facilities was a great & welcomed achievement!

**One thing we did learn was that ''two Acoms are better than one''....(well to fry breakfast on at least!!!)

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73 de Charles.







Ramsey 2011 - The day before we leave

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details
The boys have all landed at the farm. Some of the food and kit have been transported to the island by Rob, Charles and Jane. The team had a nice meal and chat last night and are now setting up all the laptops for logging etc, and they have had a couple of hours operating on the air from the farm.

We will be back on air in a little while after sorting some coax runs and a mast that we are taking over to the island.

We look forward to meeting you all on air over the next few days.

Ramsey 2011

Chris Colclough
Chris Colclough
Details The time is near. The boys are almost ready, well they are all ready to go just a thing called work in the way at the minute!

It has been finalised that we will be on Ramsey island (EU-124) on Thursday 9th June at around 08:30 (local) and will hopefully be on the air with all 3 stations running from 14:00 (local) onwards! We aim to be on all bands from 80M through to 6M, so please do listen for us.

This is if all goes to plan, and there are no sudden problems. The only thing we can see that could prevent us landing is the weather, but looking at long range forecasts it is looking like the UK is heading in to a settled and very warm period. Lets hope the bands are as lively, and we can work our friends around the world on as many bands as possible.

Remember we will be looking for Asia on all bands as we know that EU-124 is still in the top 30 most wanted from that area. And as before we will be adhering to the DX code of conduct, see elsewhere on the site.

We ask all callers to listen to what we ask, if we ask for DX outside EU, then please do not call if you live in a European Country! Please also use your full call, this makes the QSO numbers alot quicker. And if we ask for a station with "Delta Kilo" and your call does not have these letters then please be quiet and wait your turn. The number of QSO's will remain higher and less QRM means easier and quicker QSO's. This is especially needed on RTTY, where Chris and Charles will be having some fun.

Many thanks and we look forward to hearing you and seeing you on our screens.
   
© MC0SHL