Chasing Herbert OE9HRV from Mt Stromlo in Canberra

Saturday 26 December 2015.  Earlier today I noticed a SOTA alert posted by Herbert OE9HRV seeking VK Dx on 10m 28.477 MHz SSB.  2 months ago Herbert wrote to me suggesting I substitute my 10m 1/2 wave dipole for a 10m J-Pole.  Herbert went even further than a recommendation, he mailed to me a complete hombrew 10m J-Pole ready for use.  Herbert’s only request was that I use the antenna to call him for a S2S on 10m.  🙂

Having spotted Herbert’s alert on SOTAWatch for 0730 UTC (18:30 local) I posted an alert for Mt Stromlo VK1/AC-043.  If you know anything about Herbert’s SOTA activations you may recall he often operates his radio at 150 watts output powered by three 8.4 LiFePO4 batteries. Herbert’s antenna choices usually involve 1/2 wave verticals either in the J-Pole or ‘H’ antenna configuration.  Check out Herbert’s set up at Herbert OE9HRV.

My equipment:  Yaesu FT-857D, batteries 2 LiPo batteries, antenna OE9HRV 10m J-Pole.  Radio power setting 25 watts for VK chasers and 50 watts when I called Herbert.

Did I work Herbert OE9HRV on Hirschberg OE/VB-509 in Austria from Mt Stromlo in Australia?  No I didn’t.  Did I hear Hebert?  Yes I did from 07:50 UTC through to 0900 UTC, Herbert’s signal was consistently 5-2.  When Herbert called CQ on 28.477 I returned his call many times, unfortunately the FT-857D at 50 watts output wasn’t enough for a contact via short path.  Interestingly Al VK1RX/M mobile in Canberra heard Herbert.  Al and I also heard DK8MZ (non SOTA station) calling CQ VK and ZL short path, his signal was 5-5, again I return his call without success.

Who did I work from Mt Stromlo?

Time UTC Band Mode Callsign Details
7:34 28MHz SSB VK4RF Rick S58 R57
7:34 28MHz SSB VK4HA Rick S58 R57
7:36 28MHz SSB VK3ARR* Andrew S55 R53
7:37 28MHz SSB VK3PMG* Mick S59 R57
7:38 28MHz SSB VK3CAT Tony S59 R58
7:40 28MHz SSB VK8GM* Greg S58 R55
7:42 28MHz SSB VK3MEG* Steve S52 R55
7:45 28MHz SSB VK1XP/M Peter S59 R59
8:13 28MHz SSB VK1RX/M Al S59 R59
8:23 28MHz SSB ZL3CC* Andrew S52 R41
8:25 28MHz SSB VK5WG Nev S55 R54
8:44 28MHz SSB ZL3ADT Ross S58 R54
8:55 28MHz SSB VK5IS Ian S51 R51

* New unique callsigns worked on 10m.  Andrew VK3ARR, Mick VK3PMG, Greg VK8GM, Steve VK3MEG and Andrew ZL3CC.  Thanks guys  🙂

VK1AD SOTA Shack at Mt Stromlo north hump

VK1AD SOTA Shack at Mt Stromlo ‘north hump’ VK1/AC-043

10m J-Pole supported by a DX-Wire telescopic pole

OE9HRV 10m J-Pole supported by a DX-Wire telescopic pole.  The sun behind me is close to setting over the Brindabella Ranges.