Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The next target - Clipperton Island !

The next big target for DXers around the globe (excuse the pun!) is highlighted above, on my shack globe. Clipperton Island is due to come on air on Thursday, thanks to an international team which will use the callsign TX5K. Clipperton Island is the 40th most wanted DXCC according to Clublog's updated most wanted list. If I can work it, it will be a new country for me. The official DXCC designator for Clipperton is FO-C. According to the team's website, they are on schedule to land on February 27th and to begin operations as planned on 28th.

You can read more about Clipperton, an uninhabited coral atoll in the Pacific Ocean, at this link.

To all those who intend to try to work this rare entity, best of luck. See you in the pile-ups!!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Some serious QRM on 10 metres in Slovenia

S57S Aleksander demonstrates some pretty awful QRM on the 28 Mhz (10 metre) band on his Kenwood TS-850SAT. The source appears to be to his east, and he says it is occurring daily. The signal strength of the QRM is sometimes 50dB over s9. Serious stuff...

Saturday, February 16, 2013

V63ZM Micronesia makes it two new DXCC in 24 hrs

This is a short video clip showing V63ZM in Micronesia on 17 metres CW shortly after I worked him as a a brand new DXCC. His signal had actually dropped when I took this video - he was stronger when I worked him. That was DXCC #283 for me, following hot on the heels of 9U4U Burundi which I worked yesterday evening on 20m SSB as a brand new DXCC (#282). I also worked 9U4U on 17m CW and 15m SSB this morning so I now have three slots. Even without great sunspot numbers (10 metres is dead) there is still good DX to be worked on the bands.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Rotuma Island on 20m CW with 100 watts!

I've just worked 3D2RO in Rotuma, South Pacific, on 20 metres CW. I was surprised to be able to work him after just three calls using 100 watts, while waiting for the linear amplifier to warm up.

I didn't expect to get him so quickly, but could hear that he was working Gs and GMs and generally west and northwestern Europe. I only had Rotuma (3D2-R) on 17m CW, so it's a rare one here.

The operator is N7OU, Bill Vanderheide, who is active until February 21st on that island with W7YAQ (3D2RX).

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Pictures from the Coolmine radio rally

Jim EI2HJB at the Phoenix Radio Club rally in Coolmine this morning.

MI6CQS Stephen and EI4DIB Tony at the rally.

Sean EI9CBB and Michael SWL having a chat.

Ark EI9KC, Adam EI5JQ and Anthony EI2KC

Aidan EI7JC having a cuppa and a chat with Fra SWL at the Coolmine rally.

Pat EI2HX with the requisite tea mug at the rally.

Derek EI7CHB, Sean EI4IP and Ben EI4IN.

Seany EI2HZB with SWL David at the rally in Coolmine.

Thos EI2JD with harmonic TJ at the rally.

EI4DIB Tony with EI6K Thomas.
Antonio Ei2KG and Anthony EI2KC
Stephen MI6CQS shows off one of his purchases.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Video: Irish ham at the mic with 5X8C dxpedition

This is a short video showing Dave Deane EI9FBB working as 5X8C on 20 metres SSB. Dave is currently in Uganda with the 5X8C dxpedition team. I didn't have the pleasure of a QSO with him because I already have them worked on 20m SSB, but I heard several EIs working him. Well done Dave!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Hexbeam back in the air

There have been several storms here over the past few weeks with very high winds causing concern for many amateurs. One of these storms caused the pole supporting the hexbeam to buckle. Luckily, the hexbeam was not damaged and yesterday, with the assistance of three local hams, the antenna was put back up in the air. We put stay wires on the installation to ensure that a repeat incident is not likely . . . !

A photo of the snow-covered hexbeam lying in my garden on Tuesday.
I have not been very active on HF in recent weeks, due in part to the damage, and due in part to other factors. I am looking forward to several forthcoming dxpeditions. The first, 5X8C in Uganda, should be appearing on the clusters today. Our own Dave Deane, EI9FBB, is a member of that team. Good luck Dave - hope to see you in the pile-ups!

The second is 9U4U, Burundi, which is due to start next Thursday, February 14th. If I can work them that will be a brand new DXCC for me.

The last one is TX5K, Clipperton Island, due in March. That will be tougher to work, and if I can manage at least one QSO it will be a brand new DXCC also.