22 November 2014. Checked SOTAWatch this morning and found alerts for fellow VK1 activators, so I decided to take a short drive to Mt Stromlo for a chance to pick up valuable S2S points. Activator alerts:
- Simon VK1FAAS – VK2/ST/001 Mt Cowangerong (Captains Flat Wx Radar) 8 points
- Andrew VK1DA – VK1/AC-008 Mt Ginini 8 points, Namadgi National Park
- Mark VK1EM and Andrew VK2MWP joint activation of VK2/SM-049 Mt Tumanang 8 points, Tallaganda National Park
Gerard VK2IO mentioned last evening he would be in the VK2/NT region and Ian VK5CZ in South Australia is planning to activate VK5/SE-016 (unnamed).
My aim is a quick activation, I didn’t fancy messing around with the squid pole and 1/2 wave dipole on 30 degree day. I decided to try the ‘cute’ antenna, as named by Glenn VK3YY, actually a Diamond RHM8B telescopic whip antenna designed for QRP rigs such as the FT-817. The antenna mounts on the FT-817 front BNC connector, making the radio top-heavy. In the slightest of breeze it’s important to hold on to the radio case. The antenna requires a good return path to ground, unfortunately I was sitting on a wooden bench, I suspect my body was assisting. Will the FT-817 combined with the loaded whip make the grade?
Here are the results for an improvised activation using a whip antenna. Note the Band and Distance all at 5 watts into the antenna, much less being radiated. 😉
|Time UTC||Callsign||Summit Ref||Summit Name||My Summit||Band||Mode||Distance km||Comments|
|22:59||VK2IO/P||VK2/NT-025||VK2/NT-025||Mt Stromlo||7MHz||SSB||746||Gerard S2S VK2/NT-025 S51 R45|
|23:09||VK1EM/2||VK2/SM-049||Mt Tumanang||Mt Stromlo||14MHz||SSB||64||Mark S2S VK2/SM-049 S58 R51|
|23:09||VK2MWP/P||VK2/SM-049||Mt Tumanang||Mt Stromlo||14MHz||SSB||64||Andrew S2S VK2/SM-049 S58 R51|
|23:30||VK5CZ/P||VK5/SE-016||VK5/SE-016||Mt Stromlo||14MHz||SSB||979||Ian S2S VK5/SE-016 S51 R51|