Ramblings from a G4 by Antony Turnbull G4CUS January 2010

The Dxpedition to Christmas Island (VK9XX) which started in mid November is still going strong as I write this during the first week of December. Their signals have been consistently at the higher end of my S-meter scale, sometimes at 59 plus. (Band conditions were marvellous for most of the month and the sunspot count confirms the reason.

Sunspots reached a peak in mid November and then tailed off to zero towards the end of the month). They were due to leave the Island on Saturday 5th December and I hope that they had a safe journey home after all their hard work. Reading their comments on the VK9XX web site it appears that there were a number of adverse comments about their LF operating. Their answer was to say ‘come and do it better’, a sentiment I have to agree with completely. It’s very easy for us ‘arm chair’ operators to criticise someone in a remote location. I only managed to work them on 20mtrs and 30mtrs RTTY. On one occasion I heard them on 20mtr CW but just as I was about to call, they had to go QRT due to a war ship coming close. I am not sure what that was about!

I had a bash at a couple of contests in November. The WAE DX RTTY contest on 14/15 with my beam lowered to 15 feet due to 70mph winds. At this height the beam is stuck north due to the proximity of the house. However I managed a reasonable number of QSOs on the side of the beam.

The PSK63 contest on the 22nd November produced a good number of QSOs despite the fact that yet again the beam was down due to high winds! I actually put out a “CQ contest” towards the end (something I very rarely do) and was rewarded with a North American pile-up.

DX countries worked during November include:-

Papua New Guinea, India, Japan, Ghana, New Zealand, Christmas Island, Cuba, Jamaica, Suriname, China, Oman, Australia, French Polynesia, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, West Malaysia, Montserrat, Egypt, Puerto Rico, Central Africa, Indonesia, French Guiana, British Virgin Islands, Thailand, East Malaysia, and St. Pierre & Miquelon.

Contests taking place during January include:-

SARTG New Year RTTY Contest          0800Z-1100Z, Jan 1
AGCW Happy New Year Contest          0900Z-1200Z, Jan 1
ARRL RTTY Roundup                           1800Z, Jan 2 to 2400Z, Jan 3
EUCW 160m Contest                             2000Z, Jan 2 to 0700Z, Jan 3
Midwinter Contest, CW                         1400Z-2000Z, Jan 9
NRAU-Baltic Contest, CW                     0630Z-0830Z, Jan 10
Midwinter Contest, Phone                      0800Z-1400Z, Jan 10
Hungarian DX Contest                         1200Z, Jan 16 to 1200Z, Jan 17

BARTG RTTY Sprint                            1200Z, Jan 23 to 1200Z, Jan 24
CQ 160-Meter Contest, CW                  2200Z, Jan 29 to 2159Z, Jan 31
REF Contest, CW                                 0600Z, Jan 30 to 1800Z, Jan 31
SARL Youth Day Sprint                        0700Z-1100Z, Jan 30
UBA DX Contest, SSB                         1300Z, Jan 30 to 1300Z, Jan 31

DX to look out for during January include:-

Jan 5-26      DXCC: Aruba               Callsign: P40CG   QSL: LotW, Bureau
or direct mainly CW RTTY; 1200-1400z and 2000-2400z and
as time permits.
Jan 8-11          DXCC: Easter I    Callsign: CE0/YV5IAL   QSL: YV5IAL
SA-001; 14070.15 kHz, 2200-0100z, PSK31; also some 40 30 15m
Jan 8-Feb 12     DXCC: St Vincent        Callsign: J8         QSL: K2CM Bequia I     (NA-025), Grenadines; 20m, perhaps 40m; SSB CW;
QSL Bureau or direct.
Jan 10-14       DXCC: South Shetland Is      Callsign: XR9JA      QSL: CE5JA
Greenwich I (AN-010); 160-6m; CW SSB PSK31
Jan 15-Mar 31     DXCC: Guinea Bissau     Callsign: J5UAP      QSL: HA3AUI     Direct 160-10m; mainly digital, SSB + CW on request;
Jan 15-Mar 31     DXCC: Senegal        Callsign: 6W2SC     QSL: HA3AUI
160-10m; mainly digital, SSB + CW on request;
Jan 18-Feb 5       DXCC: Austral Is       Callsign: FO           QSL: Home Call     By DL1AWI as FO/DL1AWI + DL3APO DL5XU likewise
from Raivavae I (OC-114);
Jan 21-28            DXCC: Vanuatu        Callsign: YJ         QSL: 9A8MM
By 9A6DX as YJ0DX, 9A8MM as YJ0MM, 9A6XX as     YJ0XX fm Efate I (OC-035);
Jan 21-Mar 21    DXCC: Uganda        Callsign: 5X1NH     QSL: G3RWF
Jan 22-28         DXCC: Sudan           Callsign: ST26ASC    QSL: ST2M                              from Khartoum;  for 26th Arab Scouts Conference
Jan 26-Feb 9       DXCC: Senegal         Callsign: 6W       QSL: home call    sign  By GM4FDM as 6W/GM4FDM and PA3EWP as 6W/    PA3EWP from Le Calao;
Jan 27-Feb 10    DXCC: Senegal         Callsign: 6W    By HA0NAR as     6W/HA0NAR

Season’s Greetings and good hunting with plenty of DX in the New Year!

Antony Turnbull –  G4CUS. From the Vital Spark, January 2010.

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