Saturday, December 6, 2014

VK2PN and a new knee.

On Tuesday afternoon 2nd November 2014 VK2PN right leg got a new knee:

The patient and the new knee are getting acquainted and liking each other more and more.


The overlapping bone on the left side is the "ouch" area... the bone rubs on bone.


This is the new "rendition".  Nice shiny pieces of metal.  The leg is happy and is it straight.


Above you can see "recommended"  range of exercises for the new knee.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

CQ WW CQ contest 2014.

The contest finished little while ago and I just uploaded the Cabrillo file to the CQ headquarters.

Well it was good fun.  I did not do as well this year as the last year.  The reasons maybe:

  1. I'm one year older.
  2. The condx are not as good as last year (at least I feel that - the signals were not as strong). However the propagation was good.
  3. Operated from home (noisy Sydney suburb).
  4. My 40 m antenna gave me a grief - the SWR was erratic up and down and the amplifier did not like it.
  5. Can't think about any more excuses.

Here is the the 3038 report:

 CQ Worldwide DX Contest, CW

Call: VK2PN
Operator(s): VK2PN
Station: VK2PN

Class: SOAB Classic HP
QTH: Sydney
Operating Time (hrs): 24

Summary:
 Band  QSOs  Zones  Countries
------------------------------
  160:    0     0        0
   80:    4     2        3
   40:   27     9       12
   20:  456    26       67
   15:  377    26       60
   10:  300    21       23
------------------------------
Total: 1164    84      165  Total Score = 845,355

Club: VK Contest Club

Comments:

It was a good fun and thanks all for giving me a QSO.  I had two incredible (I
mean incredible and "life altering" by my standard) runs on 15 and 10
of about 100 plus QSOs for the whole hour and a bit.  That was a buzz. Thanks US and JA competitors for being gentlemen.  There would no be a chance to do it with EU crowd (mind you I still love them despite)

73 to all
Patrick VK2PN


Posted using 3830 Score Submittal Forms at: http://www.3830scores.com/ 
 
The stats in graph form:
 
 

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Return home after more than a month of absence.

As normal... the letterbox was full of mail.  Mostly bills (of course) but two envelopes contained QSL cards.  It is still thrill to receive a new QSL card and above all if it is a "rear one" or a "new country".

Some of the cards are just gorgeous, don't you think?



Thursday, October 9, 2014

VKCC meeting on Tuesday.

Unfortunately only four members attended.  However we had fun.  Exchanged tips, complaints and dreams.


It was good to have chat.


Ah... yes Vlad.. thanks for the chips..

73
P

PS.   We gotta have one more before Christmas.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Oceania SSB contest weekend.

Heidi and I have a deal... She wanted to go camping with our camping group this weekend and I wanted to run the Oceania CW test which will be next weekend.  I was more than happy to forgo the SSB part.

So we are camping at Bendelong:






As it happened the the boys from HARAOA were visiting for the contest Allan's VK2GR QTH.

Allan himself top contester let me visit and take a few photos.  Allan and I go back some time as friendly competitors for quite some time.





Allan exchanged his "big smoke" QTH for absolutely delightful rural property.  He is currently enlarging/building his antenna farm to a first class status.

When I arrived the HARAOA boys and girl were in full swing and doing well:









Good luck in the contest and hope you will defend your place.

Thanks Allan for the coffee and the tour of the property... Love it.

73
patrick

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

FT5ZM QSL card arrived today.

And a very nice card it is too:


The card is threefold two sided:

 
One of the "most elegant" QSL cards I earned.

73
P

Sunday, September 28, 2014

CQ WW RTTY contest 2014

I've spent few hours on the most important RTTY contest of the year.  The reason that I had only few hours was previous commitment.  I was glad to get some practice and above all to hand out QSOs to the other competitors.  It is good to support the contesting fraternity.

My efforts:

 CQWWRTTY Summary Sheet
                Mode : RTTY
               Default Exchange : 30
                 ARRL Section : DX
                Club/Team : VK Contest Club
                Software : N1MM Logger V14.9.0

        Band    QSOs    Pts  ZN    Cty
          14     112     334   14   36   16
          21      32      91   12   16    2
          28     159     464   19   28   16
       Total     303     889   45   80   34

            Score : 141,351

The conditions were very good except a part on Sunday afternoon (local time).  Solar flare hit the earth and the bands were very dead for close to three hours (approx 12:30 to 15:00 local).

Steve VK6IR printed:  DEAD DEAD DEAD DEAD ;;;;;;;;  in frustration.

This is busy band isn't it?

 

Above is about 26 kHz of the RTTY part of the 20 m spectrum.

Good fun

73
P





Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Lucky day...

Worked Market Reef



OJ0AM on a first call... can hardly believe it.


As you can see above... the dogpile was quite significant... Mostly EU stations some VK as well.  the DXcond were very good via Long Path.


 73
P


Saturday, September 20, 2014

The "day" had arrived.

The famous:

MWRS Flagpole Contest 2014

With conjunction: Talk like a pirate day.

Once a year special, non imitable, worldwide, becoming famous all over the world.

As you may have glanced... the way to get many points you have to use the aluminium telescopic pole topped not only by the antenna, but the pirate flag.


Using the trusty G5RV antenna.



It worked a treat:  Portable QTH on North head

Interesting observation: despite that the portable QTH was less than 1km (straight line) from my home the QRN/QRM was nil (no noise coming from the speaker).  Hard to believe.


In meantime: back at the HQ: http://www.mwrs.org.au/2014/09/20/flagpole-comp-updates/

 

Friday, September 19, 2014

Behaving on the air - Reflections of and old man.

Yet again I've blown my stack and went QRT on LP EU CW.  The stations calling were just as normal - misbehaving.
I know that my ears are not as good as they used to be and above all my patience is even worse. (after all I'm close to 70 years and therefore cranky old man).

Gentlemen:

  1. When you calling, you don't need to repeat my callsign three times... I know it already. Since I've called CQ I do assume that if you just use your own call you are trying to make a contact.
  2. If the CONDX are good (and they were excellent today) I can pick you callsign on a first go.
  3. The problem is when several stations call at once in the middle of my passband... I have great difficulties to figure out who is calling.
  4. In that situation I typically can copy part of your call... so I send it and hope that the station with the letters I was able to copy will come back and OTHERS WILL WAIT..
  5. There is no point to send your calls all at once... I can't copy them.
  6. Good idea is to use your XIT button and try to call a little (100 to 200 Hz) above or below my frequency.  That way I will be able to pick you from the pile.  Three stations calling constantly on one frequency (the same tone) - my ears can't cope with that.
  7. Well then I get angry and frustrated and go QRT.
  8. Your fun and my fun is over..

Now... blame me if you want... but the same misbehaviour  will upset any operator and I'm pretty common VK station... Can you imagine if you behave like this with really rare DX...  Ouch.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Last night lecture at Manly Warringah Radio Society.

The once a month lecture at the MWRS club was by Peter Jensen VK2AQJ about clandestine military/spy radios over the beginning to almost current technology.  Very interesting.

Here are a few photos of the items on display.  Oh .. what changes happened even in my lifespan.








I did not include descriptions, I guess the beauty of the gear is the most important feature.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

TY1AA Benin

We were away for a while so no DX.  Since arrival three days ago I was trying to work the TY1AA Benin...  Africa is always hard from my QTH (and so say several amateurs I know).

Yesterday afternoon I just "got lucky".  Got him on a third call - long path.


It is known that nowadays the "smart" DX operators know that most DXers are using the panadaptors and try to call on the frequency of the last station worked.  I.e. the DX station gets too many signals in his passband.  At the time I had noticed that he is slowly moving down in the band.  Miracles do happen you know.

Monday, August 18, 2014

International Lighthouse weekend.

Steve VK3TDX and I made the trip to Palm Beach Barrenjoey Lighthouse where the boys from MWRS were operating.  The day was very windy and heavy rain showers were on and off, or rather mostly on.

We were lucky that during the short window while we climbed the hill the rain stopped.





In the lighthouse's keepers cottage Dom VK2JNA and Geoff VK2AVR  were very busy working one QSO after the next.




At the time the boys had about 150 QSO's in the log.




Richard VK2SKY our publicity officer organized a press release in Manly Daily few days earlier so there were visitors interested in amateur radio.




73
Patrick

For those not in the know: International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend.

Visiting Bruce VK4MQ.

Third visit... Visited Bruce VK4MQ (formerly VK2ZZM).  Bruce and his wife Liz decided to leave the big smoke and move North to more sun and clean air.

We were lucky to have a long standing invitation to call in for a "cuppa".

Both Bruce and Liz are very happy in the new QTH.


Bruce's shack with all the toys... he built special shed/office just for the radios and test equipment.


We were there the same time as Greg VK2VGM and his wife Chris plus the latest "harmonic".






Amateur radio is not the only "hobby" at the new home... Bruce and Liz are trying to be farmers as well...






Everybody is happy.

73


Friday, August 8, 2014

Visiting Alan VK4SN

Another amateur radio shack to visit.  This time Alan's VK4SN... keen contester.


What a great setup...

Please note the "wallpaper" behind Alan...







Great station, great antennas and great operator.

Thanks for the coffee Alan.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Meeting in Mooloolaba with Trent VK4TS

In our travels in South East Queensland Heidi and I had a lunch with Trent at the yacht club.


Heidi took the photo after great lunch.  Thanks Trent.

The Northern Corridor Radio Group VK6ANC

As a part of our big trip around Australia in four and a half months in a little caravan I have taken the opportunity to visit one of the be...