|The team has been formed, PA0ZH, PA3EWP, PA3GCV, PA4WM, PA5EA, and PA5ET will go on DXpedition again to the Caribbean. PA3GCV and PA4WM indicated that they only will join one island.|
|The final destination has been decided, first to Dominica and next to Montserrat.|
|Accommodation has been found and booked.|
|Bouke PA0ZH re-designed the 2 single windows Quads, they are now smaller packages to transport.|
|The new Titanex V80E has been tested, also a new tuner for the V160E has been tested, it didn't work so the original "big" Titanex tuner will be taken.|
The license procedures have been started, a separate callsign is requested for 160 meter and the digital modes as well the contest on Montserrat. We are still searching for Internet Service Providers on both islands. LogStat, a DXpedition Log Analysis program, is ready to be used. Bob Dorsey, K4UVT has been working the last months together with Rob PA5ET to find all bugs and get the Graphs like we want to have it, he did a great job. After the tour this software will be officially released to the rest of the world.The EUDXF and GDXF sponsors LLDXT again, many thanks for the support.
|End September 2002|
|Internet access is now arranged, so daily updates on this web-site is a go.|
|8 October 2002|
|Today we received our J75 callsigns, this means we will probably in the air Sunday 13 October in the afternoon .|
|8 October 2002 Press Release Governor of Montserrat|
Subject: Governor's Press Release Oct 7/02
His Excellency the Governor Mr. Tony Longrigg at a meeting held in Salem on Oct. 7th 2002 told residents that in order to ensure the lives and safety of the population the following areas are to be evacuated:
Isles Bay, Waterworks, Happy Hill, Lower Friths and Old Towne
This followed two meetings of the Volcano Executive Group (VEG) held on the 7th when scientists explained the dangers to the Belham Valley of accelerated dome growth over recent days.
The areas were previously set out in the Resident's Guide published last week.
The evacuation will begin at 09.00hrs on Tuesday 8 October 2002 and will be completed by 18.00hrs on Wednesday 9 October 2002 when these areas will become part of the Exclusion Zone.
The procedures for evacuation have been previously set out in the resident's Guide and all those evacuated will be given alternative accommodation in the north of the island.
His Excellency told residents "I and the Chief Minister and others are really unhappy that we have had to make this difficult decision as we realize the hardships it will involve. Be sure that we would not be doing this if we did not think it was essential - we hope that it will only be a temporary situation."
hrs October 8, 2002
|12 October 2002|
The team left Holland heading Dominica and we arrived at 18.00 local time in Dominica. We are very pleased all equipment arrived in good condition without any customs problems. We went out for a nice local dinner and went to bed to catch up some sleep.
|13 October 2002|
|At 06.00 local time it was light and we started unpacking the antenna's. The temperature was raising very fast so it is hard work to setup the antenna's. At 10.00 o'clock we had our first quad up and the preparation have been made for the Titanex V160e. Arround 22.00Z the station was build and tested, it has been a warm day and to hot to work . . . but the heavy work has been done, we will start the DX-pedition after dinner and will be QRV on all bands 10-160 meter.|
|14 October 2002|
|Enno J75EA started this years Caribbean Tour on 40 meters CW late in our evening. Rob & Ronald started at 05.00 Z to try out the lowband antenna's. The receiving loops for 160 meter works beautiful but picks up signals of the 80 meter antenna, we have to put the loop further away to avoid this, apart of that the S-meter reads S0 when the 80 meter station was receiving. We worked about 50 stations on topband. 80 Meter was a different story, the S needle didn't come below the S9, we will setup the receiving Pennant antenna so that will hopefully solve that problem. The 2 single windows quads are plug and play again. Today the web-site will be updated with pictures and the first logs and statistics.|
|15 October 2002|
|What a day, 2 power cuts, one most of the morning and the second one whole afternoon, the electricity company said they had serious problems our side of the island, why us ??? We used the time to improve the recieving antenna's, we located the 160 loop as far as possible away from the 80 meter vertical, also we build the pennant 80 receiving antenna, this works fine now. When we had power we ran nice pile-ups, during the night we spent most of the time on the low bands until the European grey-line, we just worked some eatern Europe and by the time it reached middle Europe it started raining and the SWR changed rapidly to an unworkable situation . . . so we stoppen on topband and continued on 40 meters. We wil try to sort this out today, who builds a tuner in a plastic box ???|
|16 October 2002|
|We had several power cuts again, the 160 meter worked ok this time but no propagation to Europe. We worked the first Japanese statons on 40 and 20 meter just after our sun-set, very low signals. The Yaesun FL7000 amplifier is not working anymore, we have tried to repair it but no success, so one station is running 100 watts . . . on Montserrat we will have a second amplifier again.|
|17 October 2002|
|The powercuts are getting normal here . . . when you call they just tell, don't worry it will be back in the afternoon . . . which is not helpfull for our type of business. Working stations on topband is getting more difficult now, the big stations are worked and the QRN is very hard. We received some comments about working USA in the morning while the grey-line is over Europe, the US stations simply cover the Europeans, we only work the countries when they peek, this takes about 2 hours from East to West, only before or after we will work others. The high bands are in good shape, only the opening to Japan are not so good as other years, lets hope that will improve.|
|18 October 2002|
Today has been almost a normal day, we had an excellent night on 160 meter, almost 200 stations logged. Just after our sun rise we had a nice opening to Japan, so lets see how this day progresses. Due to family circumstances Bouke PA0ZH has to return to Holland so the team will be run by 3 operators untill we are on Montserrat where PA3GCV and PA4WM will join the team. From approx 08.00 till 14.00 local time we had again a power cut. During our sun-set we worked a bunch of Japanese on 15 meters. 2 Operators will be at the European Grey-line on 160 & 80 and later on 40 meters, at our sun-rise one station will be on 17 meters for Japan.
|19 October 2002|
|We are now running the pile-ups with 3 operators, that is not easy, 2 stations ran the European Gray-line and one at sun-rise. About 50 new stations logged on topband. We tried to to work Japanese stations on 17 meters just after our sun-rise but the European stations made that impossible. 10 Meter was in good shape to Europe. Today we will make our first SSTV and PSK QSO's.|
|20 October 2002|
|In the morning we had good runs on 10 & 12 meter, the low band antenna's have been taken down in the morning and the quads in the afternoon.|
|21 October 2002|
|The J7 expedition went QRT at 03.00Z. We left Dominica at 09.00 local time and departed 17.00 local time with the ferry to Montserrat. Thanks to the great help of the Montserrat Amateur club we could import all equipment without any problems. As you can see the Internet connection is established so you can expect daily updates multiple times a day.|
|22 October 2002|
|We arrived at our villa in the evening, the villa is looking free to North America and Europe. We have the callsign VP2MPA confirmed and all other callsigns will be arranged in the cause of the day. First thing in the morning we will start building all antenna's which will take all day, the first signals can be expected in the cause of our evening. The VP2MPA call will be used for 160 & 80 meter and all digital modes as well the CQWW SSB contest. At 15.00 local time we received the confirmations for the callsigns. The antenna's have been build in the morning. We only have to put in the radials and the RX antenna's and than we are ready to play.|
|23 October 2002|
|Today we had our first operating day, propagations are different from Dominica, USA is louder and Europe is weaker. In our first night on 160 we only logged US stations, no Europe was heard. Late in the afternoon Henk VP2MCV and Martin VP2MWM arrived with the ferry from Antigua and joined the team. The 2nd amplifier arrived in good condition so we can run power again on 2 rigs.|
|25 October 2002|
|We repaired the 160 meter RX loop, it had condens in the tuning box, we had a good run to the USA on topband, about 160 stations are logged, the opening to Europe was very bad, only 15 stations have been logged, hopefully this situation will improve, all other bands seems to perform excellent. Tonight we will be active in the CQWW SSB contest as VP2MPA.|
|28 October 2002|
|The past weekend we have been very active in the CQWW SSB contest, we had one stations running 48 hours and a second multiplier station. It was very difficult to compete against all the stations with big antenna systems but we are happy with the result, 7000 QSO's have been logged. As of today we are back on all bands and modes, the low bands are not in good shape, still no Europe in the topband log, we are hoping for better propagation. Yesterday night after the contest we had a look at the Vulcano in the dark and saw big red rocks coming down and lava streams on the hills. This is very impressive.|
|29 October 2002|
|Today we have setup a 100 meter long beverage to improve our reception situation on 160 meter, it payed off, we worked 30 Europeans, the propagation was again very poor but better than the day before. We will be on each night so hopefully more stations will get in the log.|
|30 October 2002|
|Today we have decided to change the operator shifts slightly so we have 2 CW operators during the European Gray-line, this means that at our sun-rise we will be active only in SSB, this be done for the next 2 days until the end of the operation. We want to fill the CW gaps on the low bands, we have worked many SSB stations during the CQWW contest.|
|1 November 2002|
|This will be our last full operating day, again we worked many stations on the low bands althought we are still waiting for a good run to Europe on topband. Today we will run some PSK. The plan for tomorrow is to stop the VP2M operation at about 15.00Z.|
|2 November 2002|
|Today had been the last operating day, we went QRT at 17.00Z, at that same time we had an vulcano ash cloude passing by, so it's time to leave, it is getting more dangerous every day. 31.920 QSO's have been made from Montserrat including the CQWW SSB contest. We didn't had any problems with customs leaving Montserrat, all paperwork was perfectly arranged by the Montserrat Radio Club, also the arrival at Antigua didn't give any problems, but our flight from Antigua to London was overbooked, they tried to get us of the flight . . . we said no way so they let us on but they charged us $400 for overweight . . . so it became an expensive trip . . .|
|3 November 2002|
|At 15.00 local time the team arrived back in Amsterdam Holland.|
|4 November 2002|
|The first piles with QSL cards arrived, there we go again . . . The latest version of the logs as well the VP2M SSTV Gallery will be published soon.|