30 Mar 2015

CQ WPX Contest, March 28th & 29th 2015

The following summary is from Jim M0CKE:

Call: G2F


Station: G2F

Class: M/S HP

QTH: Wisbech
Operating Time (hrs): 48 
Location: Northern Europe

Total:3464Prefixes1311Total Score10,524,708

Our first attempt @ MS in WPX SSB, and the interlocking is entertaining to say the least. Friday got off to a bad start with the winch break failing on the main 26m tower when it was at about 18m @ 0730 hours, result was an injured operator and a 20m beam which was in tatters, elements and boom badly bent, after op repairs, tower repairs, winch repairs and a rebuild of the 20m beam we were in a position to start putting the radios etc together @ 1500 hrs .. I tell you this was no mean feat and required huge dedication from the engineering team (M0CKE and M0CHK, M0CHK being the injured party)!!! Our station is ad hoc and has to be set up before every large contest, this will soon change with a new shack build planned. So we were setup and ready to test @ 2100 hrs and testing commenced with no real issues so on to the start we went. LF were very poor Sat am with most of our Q's coming from 20m runs into the US during our dark hours, Saturday day conditions were reasonable but 10m never really got going with the main operations on 15 and 20m, Saturday night was better on 40m and 80m but 80m was still very poor and 160m was hardly worth the effort, Sunday morning daylight hours were hard going with no real Asia runs and conditions seemed very poor, finally Sunday afternoon the HF bands opened to NA and the runs began with good runs on 15m and 20m but 10 was still not great. We all had a great time on the contest, WX during the weekend was very windy with gusts upto 100km/h during Sunday but the antenna's all held position nicely. Good food and good company as usual make for good contests. Our aim was 10m points and 3500 Q's so we were not far off and the team was happy with the result for the first attempt .. lots to learn and some modifications to be made before next year SSB WPX :) See you all soon 
Jim M0CKE & the clan @ G2F

9 Mar 2015

RSGB / IARU - March 144MHz & 432MHz Contest March 7th/8th 2015

On March 7th & 8th the RSGB & IARU R1 - 144 MHz & 432MHz International Trophy Contest took place. I was out active with The BlackSheep Contest and DX Group under the callsign "G8T" from Locator square JO01KJ and first time in several years that the Blacksheep Contest and DX group entered this contest. There was a lot of preparations to be made for this contest so I arrived on the site Thursday Night with half the group and helped the Team put together our station for the weekend. We worked hard all day Friday and finally got all antenna systems built and working by Saturday afternoon just in time for the start of the contest at 14:00UTC.

Below some pictures of the antennas we setup for this contest:

2M Shack and my Tent for sleeping

The 2M Arrays

4 x 10 Element Yagis on 2M

2 x 14 Element Yagis on 2M

6 x 3 Element Yagis on 2M

4 x 17 Element Yagis on 70cm

As for the contest conditions on the 2m band they were up towards OK/OE and F/EA on the Saturday but very flat on the Sunday and as for the 70cm band, conditions were up towards OZ/DL on the Saturday but same as 2m very flat on Sunday. 

We finished up the contest with the following claimed score:

695 QSO's with 397 Points Per QSO - Totaling 275,837 Points, ODX - EB1DBP @ 1136km

171 QSO's with 335 Points Per QSO - Totaling 57,310 Points, ODX - OZ1SKY @ 821km

Once again got to say a big Thank you to all the Team in the Blacksheep Contest group for inviting me along again to contest with them, it certainly was a fantastic experience and a great weekend. Looking forward to the next one and as always thanks to all for QSOs and the points.



March 144/432 MHz 2015

The Hepburn forecast was enticing during the week leading up to the event. In the end the forecast proved optimistic. However there were enhanced conditions particularly during Saturday evening. On 144MHz many stations were working into the further reaches of DL, OE, OK and SM. Additionally there were lifts into EA between 8 and 9pm on Saturday and between 7am and 1pm on Sunday. The number of contacts made by G8T was the highest by some margin in the 16 years that I have adjudicated this contest. On 432MHz the enhanced condition were into DL and OZ.

On 144MHz 99 squares were worked. There were 15 QSOs greater than 1000kms and a further 18 QSOs between 900 and 1000kms. The best contact was between GD8EXI and EA1EWY/P at 1175kms.

On 432MHz 60 squares were active. There were 8 contacts over 800kms and a further 27 between 700 and 800kms. The best contact was between G3M and OZ9GE at 899kms.

The March contest is rarely benign weather wise and this year there were strong and gusty winds across the UK and rain affected some portable stations.

Overall entry levels rose considerably and were 48% up on 2014. Most noticeable was the increase in single operator fixed stations participating in the 24 hour section.

Congratulations go to:
The Blacksheep Contest Group, G8T, who won the open section;

Keith, G4ODA, who won the single operator fixed section;

Richard, G4WFR/P, for winning the single operator others section;

The Drowned Rats CG, M0HRF/P, who won the six-hour open section;

Richard, GD8EXI, who won the six-hour single operator fixed section for the second year running;

All other band winners and runners up, who together with stations identified, will receive certificates.

Roger Dixon, G4BVY