Harlow Amateur Magazine

Summer 2000

Rally Roundup

Under the skilled leadership of Alan (M5WAD) the club has continued its fund raising efforts by attending local amateur radio rallies. On 14th May we had a pitch at the Dunstable Downs Rally. Although this was a great success we found that the inflow of donations for sale and assorted junk found around the Barn was still causing a storage problem. So, on 30th July we took a double car boot pitch at the RSGB Hamfest in the majestic grounds of Hatfield House. Again the club did well in terms of fund raising and great fun was had by all. Watch out for future club stalls as the rally season rolls on.

Titanic Terry

Continuing our program of occasional talks at the Barn we were pleased to have club member Terry White (G0BXL) presenting a fascinating talk on The Titanic. Terry’s enthusiasm for the subject clearly showed through as club members were treated to a wide range of display items including books, reports, official documents, videos, scale models and memorabilia of all kinds. The evening will be remembered for Terry’s rich knowledge of the Titanic and its most famous maiden voyage.

Club members are eagerly waiting for Terry to complete the building of his shack which is, of course, being modelled on the radio room of his other hobby.

What do you get when you cross a novice trainee with an HF amplifier?

  1. Anxious ‘A’ licensees
  2. Reduced class size
  3. The Club Barbeque

Harlow and District
Amateur Radio Society

Meetings every Tuesday 8pm local time
Mark Hall Barn
Tel/Fax: 01279-864973 Mobile: 0793-1207184
Email: g6ut@qsl.net

VHF National Field Day 2000

At the end of cross checking, and verifying the VHF Field Day entries for 2000, I would first of all like to thank all of the operators, and other club members that gave their time over the field day weekend. It was gratifying to find so many members available to help us break down the station this year.

After looking through the logs, and checking back against our last years scores, we have achieved a 70% increase in our score on 432 MHz, and an 80% increase on our 144 MHz score. QSO Counts are up slightly on 144 MHz, from 225 to 244 (about 8.5%), and from 29 to 44 on 432 MHz (about 50%).

This year was the first time we have entered the 50 MHz and 70 MHz sections of the competition, and all credit must go to Dave G3UEG, and Chris G3SVL for the efficient way they ran those stations.

Thanks to a bit of Sporadic E propagation at odd moments over the weekend, our Outstanding DX (ODX) on 144 MHz was into Romania, with YO4ATW taking the prize in Grid Square KN35XG, at 2159 km, closely followed by YO8KOA/P (KN36VF, 2096 km), YO5DND (KN17RR, 1728 km) and YO5KOP/P (KN17PV, 1709 km), plus at least another three that 'got away'

See you there next year !

Mike (G7OBS)
Contests Manager


Phonetic Alphabet

We all know how boring it can get repeatedly giving information in phonetics during poor conditions so here's a modern alternative to brighten up your QSO's. This variation on the phonetic alphabet is based on the latest international playground craze, Pokemon. Using it is bound to increase your street credibility with younger amateurs around the world.

Alakazam

Jigglypuff

Snorlax

Butterfree

Kingler

Tentacool

Charmander

Lickitung

Urimu

Diglett

Magneton

Voltorb

Electrabuzz

Ninetales

Weedle

Farfetch'd

Onix

Xray

Geodude

Pikachu

Yanyanma

Horsea

Quick

Zapdos

Ivysaur

Ratta

 

Try it out during your next QSO; from Geodude Xray Six Butterfree Urimu Tentacool.

The State Of The Market

Well, I’m of the old school, I don’t buy new if old will do. I cannot understand the new way of thinking – ‘throw away the old and buy new’.

It seems that all the dealers don’t want our old kit, even the small second hand dealers.

Well I still think there is a market, and to this end G6UT (The Club) will offer a new service to members and non-members. We will advertise all equipment on our web pages and take the equipment to rallies we attend – for a small percentage

  • 10% members
  • 15% non-members
  • minimum fee 1

Alan (M5WAD)
Vice Chairman

Antennas and Contesting

On the 11th July the club was pleased to receive a presentation on antennas and contesting by club member David Gould (G3UEG). The multi-media talk was based on material first shown at the 1999 RSGB HF and IOTA Convention. David made a splendid job of covering an interesting topic and was able to draw on experiences gained while operating with Chris (G3SVL) during numerous contests.

It is hoped that David will re-run this particular presentation during the winter season for those members who missed out this time around.


Licensed am I
Sitting at my radio
Oh C Q C Q

Flushed With Success

After years of debate and the crossing of legs; Mark Hall Barn now has its own toilet. Phew!

QSL Report

The past few months has seen more than 2 kg of cards arriving through the bureau. Most of these, around 1000 cards, have been for GX6UT and 80% are for morse contacts (thanks to M0DXR). Naturally this has depleted our own supply of QSL cards so a new order will need to be processed.

Only a handful of cards have been received for our new callsign, MX5BUT, and all of these have been direct.

Ideas and assistance in creating a new club QSL card are now being sought.

Philip (2E0AUU)
QSL Manager

Coming Up…

Watch out for the next exciting issue in autumn. We hope to bring you news of Mark’s (M0DXR) preparations for a Dxpedition and a report on his recent brush with journalists. Also we can expect the second instalment of Keith’s (G3WRO) wander down memory lane.

Reports should be available from our special event station at the Old Harlow Victorian Fayre (GB2VF) to be held on 10th September and the Transmission 2000 and JOTA events.

If you would like to contribute or have ideas about what we should include then please contact a member of the committee.

Eighty-Eight

I have always been interested in things technical, so following the other members of my family into the hobby of Amateur Radio seemed like a good idea. I figured that at least I would be able to follow the gist of the conversations at home!

And so, some six months after Chris and Alex each gained their Novice Licence, I joined Richard at the Novice Training Course run by Harlow and District Amateur Radio Society (HADARS). I must admit that I did enjoy the classes, which were strangely evocative of my school physics lessons many, many years ago.

The high points of being a "Radio Ham" (apart from passing the exam!) stem from being a member of HADARS. It was great fun setting up camp in a farmer’s horse paddock for a field contest. Similarly we all enjoyed ourselves operating the special event station GB2CL at the Lifeboat House on the end of Clacton Pier. I think my most significant personal achievement was contacting M2000A (a special event station celebrating the new century) in the minutes before midnight on the eve of the Millennium.

Thus far my involvement with amateur radio is the same as that of any other hobbyist. However I have made no mention of one small fact. I am female. In many ways this makes no difference. I always knew that I was the only female in our small group of novice students and the sole female member of the club. I have since learned that being "different" from the majority of radio amateurs does have its disadvantages. Purely from a practical viewpoint, I have to limit my liquid intake at club meetings as, until recently, there have been only gent’s stand-up facilities (members of HADARS will know what I mean!).

Another problem is the lack of other female voices on the air. This is where my disillusionment with the hobby arises. As a trainee novice I was anticipating many more contacts with other females. In the year since gaining my novice licence, I have spoken to only one. I am more than happy to contact people (regardless of gender) and give them points for competitions. But, understandably, the subject matter of many conversations between radio amateurs is male orientated. Just to quickly dispel any myths, I am interested in the propagation both of radio waves and plants. Furthermore, I neither want nor expect to swap recipes on air! This leads me to wonder why amateur radio is male-dominated. Why are so few females attracted to what can be such an absorbing hobby?

Perhaps now is the time to issue a challenge to fellow females out there. Come and find out what is involved in this fascinating hobby. It’s not exclusively for men. And it’s not that difficult to pass the Novice exam. My younger son, Richard, gained his City and Guilds qualification at the tender age of 10. Join me and swell the number of girls on air. Just think, if you came to HADARS, you would instantly double the number of female club members. Now that would be an achievement for "girl power"!

Lorna (2E1HKD)

Harlow Amateur Magazine

Summer 2000

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