Posts tagged news

Clifton Country Club Net Sunday 9th April 2017

Apologies for the delay in the production of this summary, this was primarily as a result of an IT system failure brought about by a Microsoft update for Windows 10. This update apparently corrupted the registry files and required a complete reinstallation of the operating system. Even having backed up our files it still resulted in a few fraught days and even now we have still not regained all facilities that were on the system. It was somewhat less than reassuring when we found that we are not alone in falling foul of these W10 updates.

However, let’s go back to last Sunday’s CC net.

It was the warmest day of the year so far with the spring sunshine raising the temperatures to 22c. Therefore I was not too surprised when we could only muster two other members on Sunday’s net.

Conditions on 80m were better than expected for inter-G working; Brian (G3OYU) was the first to respond to my initial call at 14.50hrs with 59+10db signals from Crowhurst. He was closely followed by Peter (G3PJB) from Swanley who was also a respectable 59+10db. Brian was benefitting from his new hearing aid system which was interfaced from his transceiver by a ‘magic–box’ that he controlled for level and response from his i-phone. This amazing piece of kit gave him access to his radio again after several months of absence. To learn more about Brains experience with hearing loss I recommend you read his letter in May’s edition of Rad Com (p98).

Peter (G3PJB) told us he had augmented his IC7300 with an Inrad RX7300 ‘gadget’ that gave the facility of a separate receive antenna. These units are available from well-known amateur radio retailers. It is part of Peter’s on-going battle with high levels of local electrical noise; hopefully this will allow him to deploy a receive-only rotatable loop antenna to facilitate nulling out the offending noise source.

Good luck with that Peter, I do however feel that it is a little miserly of Icom not fitting a separate receive capability, I had a dedicated RX antenna socket on an IC751E that I owned over a decade ago.

Peter went on to tell us that he had spoken to Denis (G3OKY) who unfortunately had suffered a couple of falls recently. Denis was still keen to get back on the air and was hoping to invest in a new IC7300. Hello Denis, be careful and we will be listening for you!
Brian (G3OYU) said he was operating on his ‘long-wire’ fed via a 9:1 Unun which he had constructed based on similar item shown January’s Rad Com. He was not too impressed with performance so far, but would give it time before made any decision to alter the set up. Brian, it is certainly radiating well on this band you are still an armchair-copy (59+) at my QTH.

I told the group I had noticed the increased activity on 160m as conditions on the higher frequencies had deteriorated and I missed not having access to 1.8MHz since deploying my full-wave loop for 80m. Therefore I was giving thought to erecting an end fed wire for top-band; fortunately I have the space and the trees to support it.

Peter (G3PJB) had spent last Saturday at a bus enthusiast’s rally held at Detling showground. Where there were over 200 buses on display. He was hoping to see John (G3FNZ) there with his treasured Austin7.

Brian (G3OYU) went on to tell the group that even with his newly found hearing aid interface unit we has still able to utilise his BHI noise cancelling unit. He had also been busy on upgrading his shower room, and was fighting a continuing battle with weeds on his driveway. Oh yes, Brian I have several gallons of agricultural grade glyphosate concentrate in my armoury here.

At this point we were joined by Dave (G8BWR) from near Peterborough. Although not a Clifton member he was made very welcome. Dave had recently fitted a new microphone and requested a report on the quality of the received audio. Not knowing Dave’s voice it was a little difficult to make an objective comment although it was not the clearest I had heard as it seemed to be lacking in the upper response. Peter (G3PJB) who was listening via Hack Green SDR found that Dave’s audio was quite acceptable, although Peter could not resolve Dave’s signal direct ( perchance the filtering network via the SDR system was assisting in ‘lifting’ the audio?).

Dave (G8BWR) then signed with us to seek further reports from other occupants of 80m.
Peter (G3PJB) was in mid-sentence when he disappeared ………..It later transpired that Peter’s IC7300 had taken a scan up the band. On his return to 3.690 MHz Peter thought this self-driven scan could be as a result of excess RF within his shack? Also his internet connection was still apparent affected by his transmissions on HF; as a result he was losing access to the Hack Green SDR.

If you recall in last month’s summary I suggested Peter fitted a VDSL filter plate at the LJU where the phone line enters his property. A VDSL plate had completely solved any RF instigated loss of broadband at my QTH (Also my hard wired extensions still function perfectly with no need of dangly filters!)

Apparently Peter has yet to explore this solution, in the meantime he is hoping that by attaching ferrite rings to his speaker lines and inter connections on the computer will resolve the problems. Good luck OM you will eventually crack it!

Brian (G3OYU) said he was fortunate in that he had two computers in the shack neither suffered from internet loss, but his shack was in the garden away from the router in the bungalow.

At this point in the proceedings (15.44hrs) John (G3FNZ) called in from Rochester to say that he was sorry to be late on parade, but he had been watching the motor racing and then finishing some gardening duties. No problems John, we are only too pleased to have you aboard.

Before the net I received apologies from Mark (G0GQT) who had been scheduled to work this weekend.

He has asked me to remind the group (and our readers) that from Sunday 30th April until 6th May he will be with an expedition to Holy Island and will be QRV on all HF bands and also 2m on the evening of Tuesday 2nd May for the UKAC activity series. For more detailed information about the expedition and Holy Island refer to MC0VRC at
The experimentation aspect of amateur radio is still alive, never more so than when an individual decides to take that ‘leap of faith’ and totally dismember an expensive commercially made piece of equipment to reconstruct it in an effort to improve the performance. This has recently been the case with Terry (M0TNE) a near neighbour who has ‘upgraded’ and expanded his ‘off the shelf’ mini beam into truly functional antenna.

Well done that man!

Talking of antennas, two days ago my 6m, 2m & 70cms co-linear was bathed in pink light from the setting sun, when I noticed the fibreglass element was shaking in the breeze. It had apparently succumbed to the last 16yrs of weather. On checking the RF performance with my AA600 it appeared to be in order, I must assume that there has not been any significant water ingress. It is obviously time to lower the Versa-tower with a view to replacing the tri-band co-linear.

During the net conditions on 80m were good for inter-G propagation, even John (G3FNZ) he could hear me over his local ‘electrical soup’. Hopefully this will be case for next month.
Food for thought, we have two more CC Nets before we go into recess for the summer, hopefully you can find time to join us, and after all it is your net.

The next Clifton Country Club Net will be at 1500hrs GMT on Sunday 14th May, the frequency will be circulated during week before.

I am now off to try and restore the missing facilities on our main computer; does anyone know how to locate misplaced sub-files in MS Outlook?

Catch you on the wireless!

I can often be found on or around the QRP CW part of 60m on 5.260 MHz

73 es 88 de Tony es Suzanne.

Clifton Country Club Net Sunday 12th February 2017

The sleet was being driven against the shack window as I tuned across an apparently quiet 80m band. Therefore it was very reassuring when John (G3OGE) responded to my initial call from his Hornsea QTH. He was closely followed by Peter (G3RQZ) from Redhill. Both stations were extremely readable, although Peter’s transmission +20db over. Peter said that all the snow had thawed and his current ambient temperature was 3.8c, he went on to say that he was using his TL922 linear this month just to ‘keep the damp out’ of the unit as he had not used it for several weeks.

John (G3OGE) said he was a little surprised that he was radiating such a good signal as he was using 60ft of wire as an antenna without an earth or counterpoise.
I told John he was a respectable 57 here in Norfolk albeit occasionally his signal took a dive in QSB.

John (G3FNZ) thumped in with a 58 signal from Rochester with the news that he and Beryl had attended the Clifton dinner at the Miller and Carter restaurant in Bexley. John went on to say it was good to meet with other members although he was saddened by the ‘winding up’ the Clifton as he was one of the original founder members from 1946.
He was also a little disappointed that only six club members and their xyl’s attended the dinner also the Clifton diners were split between two tables across an aisle making conversation a little awkward. But all in all it was a good opportunity to reminisce.
Our thanks go out to Lawrie (G4FAA) who was the prime mover in organising the dinner. With our membership spread from the south coast through to Yorkshire, and across as far as Switzerland. It is extremely difficult to find a venue, as well as a time to suit the majority.

The following feed-back was posted by Lawrie on the ‘G3GHN Yahoo Group’.
6 club members and their xyl’s attended – Martin (G0DCG), John (G3 FNZ) with Beryl, Clive (G0PPO/ G8APV), Keith (G4TJE), Steve (G4 RFC) with Liz and Lawrie (G4 FAA) with Maureen.  A number of other  club members were unable to attend due to work commitments etc. but sent best wishes to the gathering namely: Peter (G0 NGP) ,Tony (G0HUZ),Suzanne (G0LUZ) Peter (G7 ULL), Colin (G0UJK) and Bob (G4 DBW).

A hearty meal was enjoyed by all.  John (a founder member of the club) brought along his Clifton club photo archive which dates back to 1946 which was passed around the tables with great interest!

At the end of the dinner it was unanimously agreed by the committee members present that the modest costs of the meal should be met  by the club which led on to a discussion as to what to do with remaining club funds ? Several “Amateur radio charities” proposals were put forward including donations to an appropriate RSGB fund ,the  Wireless for the blind charity or the Radio amateur invalid and blind club but no firm conclusion was reached.

Thus please forward any support for or alternative suggestions on this subject to Martin who is both club secretary and treasurer—.

And finally a tentative idea was put forward for a future barbecue style get together one weekend in the summer so watch this space!

Best 73’s all

Lawrie (G4FAA)

I have reproduced Lawrie’s circulation as unfortunately not all “Cliftonaires” are members of the G3GHN Yahoo Group. As a result some were unaware of the function and have stated that they would have attended if they had known. I will be passing the details of the G3GHN Yahoo Group to those concerned.

At this point Peter (G3PJB) announced his presence from Swanley with 58 signals at my QTH. Although this was not reciprocated in Peter’s report. Unfortunately he was still plagued with the high levels of noise and gave me a 54 at best, with my transmissions occasionally submerging below his local QRM, this made life very difficult. However Peter (G3RQZ) was an easy copy, although John (G3OGE) was not audible due to noise. Peter (G3PJB) had to utilise Hack Green remote SDR to stay in touch with the group. He also had intended to use his solid state linear, but unfortunately his computer or router would shut-down if he exceeded 100w output; leading to the loss of reception via the Hack Green SDR. Don’t worry Peter you were very readable here without the linear.

John (G3OGE) stated that Peter (G3RQZ) was an ‘armchair copy’, being strong enough to override John’s local noise. Unfortunately the noise was having a detrimental effect on my signals such that John could only give me a 54 report. To receive Peter (G3PJB) he too had to resort to Hack Green.

John went on to say he had joined the local radio club at Hornsea. This was so close to his QTH that he could walk to the meetings. Although they were looking for new premises as the owner of their old venue had suddenly decided to increase the rent.

It was quite an active club with about 30 members (Err! that sounds like the Clifton in 80’s & 90s). John stated how pleasing it was to be able join the CC Nets now that he was back in the UK, unlike being ‘continental QRM’ when he was in France. John went on to say there was a fair level of activity locally; he often joined nets with club members as far away as Scarborough.

Peter (G3RQZ) said that all stations were a solid copy at his QTH, again this due his low noise environment. This confirmed that John (G3OGE)’s random 60ft wire sans counterpoise or earth was certainly radiating.

Peter went on to say it was his intention this year to get out and about during the ‘contest season’ with his portable micro-wave kit. He had in the past been involved with G4ALE in contests and is still custodian of the G0ALE call.

With John (G3OGE) mentioning Scarborough, it linked nicely to an e-mail I received before the net from Frank (G3WMR) who sent his apologies as he would not be available as he was currently in Scarborough?………..The only difference is that he was some 5000miles west of Yorkshire in Tobago (9Y). However Frank said he hoped to be listening on-line via Hack Green.

In my reply e-mailed to Frank I said Suzanne and I had visited Tobago on 20th January 2016; a lovely island with wonderful people.  During our visit we cycled from Scarborough to Pigeon Pt and back along the coast roads and over Mason’s Hill dropping down past Fort King George to the port, a distance of some 60 miles of stunning tropical scenery in temperatures of 28C.

After the net I received confirmation from Frank that he had listened to the net whist sitting in café on the beach. He had copied everyone involved via Hack Green until his laptop batteries died. Frank passed on his best 73s to all.

I hope you managed to receive the greetings sent by the group before your batteries failed Frank?

Staying on this theme of increasing local QRM, I received an interesting e-mail from Bob (HB9BDJ ex-G3OAW), which I am sure he won’t mind sharing with you:

Greetings Tony,

I shall be listening on 12th Feb with the hope of hearing something on 80 m.
During the interval between the Feb. net and that which should take place in March, I hope to become QRV with 1kW from a shack belonging to HB9ADJ. At my home location, persistent (and overwhelming) QRM makes it now impossible to continue on anything other than VHF/UHF, EME or repeater operation.

HB9ADJ’s shack is a caravan in the middle of wide open agricultural land with a good take-off path towards the north and excellent ground conduction thanks to underlying water. (Lake Geneva is quite close). Antenna will be a long wire of some kind – details still to be worked out. If we manage to hear the Clifton gang in March, we shall give you a call. Of course, lately, propagation on 80 and 40 has been very unpredictable and so we shall be in the hands of the gods.

In any event, please rest assured that I read your monthly summary which always arrives without a blemish and it is a great pleasure to know that the Clifton spirit is still alive.

73 QRO de Bob HB9BDJ (ex G3OAW)

Thank you Bob, it is a little perverse to say, but it is reassuring to learn that we are not alone in the UK in suffering the growing menace of local noise.

Looking back in the archive of Country Club net summaries, it can be seen that the topic of disruptive local noise levels was first raised in 2014.Then it only affected a few of our members in specific locations for limited periods, annoying but tolerable. However, since the widespread introduction of high speed broadband via VDSL the scourge of wide-band noise on the lower HF frequencies (top band and 80m) has spread to the majority of the HF spectrum making HF reception impossible in many areas. In the March edition of Rad Com (p.56) Dr. John Rogers examines the issue of local noise from VDSL installations and what if anything we can do to mitigate the situation.

At this point in the afternoon Colin (G0UJK) called in from Swanley saying that I was only a 45 signal, again Colin was victim of a similar ‘noise floor’ as fellow Swanley resident Peter (G3PJB). Colin went on to say he was very disappointed that he could not attend the Clifton dinner because he was unable to take time away from work. He felt that some consideration should have been given to those members who were not retired. On this point Colin, I know that Lawrie (G4FAA) strived to strike a balance with the venue, availability and the date of the event. Having organised these functions myself in the past, I can assure you that there is a lot more involved than it first appears and it is almost impossible to please everyone. I am sure any advice and assistance you can give with regard to the proposed ‘summer barbeque’ will be greatly appreciated.

As Colin finished his over I just caught a weak station calling. This was Ed (PE1IQC) although not a Clifton member, he had been listening to our group for some time. Ironically he also was suffering from local noise that meant most of the group were very difficult to copy, with the exception of Peter (G3RQZ) and myself.  Ed was located in the medieval town of Schoonhoven, he was running 50w from an old FT107 that he had recently repaired. His antenna was an off-centre fed dipole at 15m above the ground. This set up was producing a fairly good signal here in Norfolk 55/57 with rolling QSB. Peter (G3RQZ) could also copy Ed well, although unfortunately Ed was not readable with the others, even via Hack Green.

We explained the background of the Clifton ARS to Ed and said that he was welcome to join our merry band.

John (G3FNZ) stated that his local QRM was so high that he was unable to hear what was being said. Therefore, regretfully he was going to sign out.  Thanks for coming on John and hopefully we will hear you next month!

John (G3OGE) said that he was sorry to have missed the dinner, and that he was willing to travel to meet with old radio pals providing he was given sufficient notice. He went on to say that he had not seen Peter (G3PJB) for at least 40years and the last time he had met with Peter (G3RQZ) was when he was domiciled in France. Because John was now experiencing increasing QRM from the near continent he was signing too.

Just before contemplating the closure of the net, Peter (G7ULL) put in an appearance from his elevated QTH in Chislehurst. Peter was his typical 59+ signal and said that I was likewise with him. During the last month he had been enjoying the weekday evening 2m and 70cm activity sessions giving him the chance to work several new squares. Meanwhile even with the HF bands in the doldrums Peter had made several contacts on 20m to the Far East including Papua New Guinea (P29). Just going to prove even quiet bands can produce surprises.

As the time approached 15.30 the skip on 80m was lengthening; European stations were just beginning to become intrusive. This was to the benefit of Ed (PE1IQC) whose  signals had improved to a clear 59. He went on say he enjoyed servicing and refurbishing old radios such as the FT107. Because he was retired he did not have the money to spend on new SDR and state of the art rigs. It had be very interesting listening to our net, especially how we were being affected by the burgeoning sources of local noise.

I told Ed that he was very welcome to join our next net scheduled for Sunday 19th March at 1500 Hrs. Hopefully this date should avoid most major contests.

Before the net I received an e-mail from Brian (G3OYU) with not only apologies but also some good news, in that he has been fitted with an ‘implant’ to correct his hearing loss. Since the procedure he has found the improvement in his hearing quite amazing. The technology of these modern devices is also quite stunning, in that all the functions of level, sensitivity etc. are controlled from Brian’s smart-phone via a Bluetooth link. All being well Brian hopes to be on the next Country Club net. We all look forward to that Brian!
As the clock reached 15.35 hrs most had signed, just leaving me to tie the ribbons on the CC Net until next month.

Hopefully we will hear as many of you as possible on Sunday 19th March at 1500hrs.
Until then, ‘catch you on the wireless’, especially if you happen to be in the ‘long grass’ near 5.262 Mhz.

73 es 88s de Tony es Suzanne.

February 2017 Clifton Country Club Net

February’s Clifton Country Club net is scheduled for this Sunday 12th February, as inter-G conditions have apparently improved on 80m can I suggest we start the net at the earlier time of 14.30 Hrs. This should allow inter G communication before the onset of longer skip and the associated QRM from the near continent.

With UK in the chilly grasp of an easterly wind from Siberia, why not stay in the warm and fire up the wireless and join the gang on or near 3.690 Mhz at 14.30 Hrs this coming Sunday 12th February?

73 de Tony es Suzanne.

Clifton Country Club Net Sunday 15th January 2017

At 14.15Hrs the 80m band appeared un-populated with the exception of the sporadic ‘whirrs’ from switch mode powered devices and occasional weak signal from near Europe.
I set up camp on 3.689Mhz to avoid a very weak QSO 3KHz higher and to keep the frequency ‘warm’ I put out the occasional general call both in SSB and CW.

To my pleasant surprise Jeff (GW3UZS) responded from Cardiff, giving me a 59+ report, he was a similar signal here in Norfolk. Jeff was using his ‘homebrew’ SDR system and homebrew 350w linear amplifier. On ‘seeing’ my solid signal on an otherwise vacant band he had given me a call. Things were definitely looking up!

As Jeff signed, Peter (G3RQZ) romped in with 59+ signals from near Redhill, followed closely by Mark (G0GQT) from Rochester and Peter (G3PJB) from Swanley.

It would appear that I had opted for the ‘correct’ band as all stations were extremely readable with me.

Peter (G3RQZ) told the group he was using his IC7300 whilst sitting in his conservatory, this set up had been used by a friend during yesterday’s AFS contest. Peter went on to say most of the laying snow had gone and the air temperature was now 7c.

Mark (G0GQT) said that poor WX and some anti-social working commitments had prevented the deployment of an 80m dipole, so he was still working with a 40m antenna. Mark had been delving further into his recently acquired 811K linear amplifier and had found that an anode choke required rewinding also there were a few other niggling faults. However, he was enjoying the challenge and was awaiting more components to arrive by post.

Peter (G3PJB) was also running his new IC7300, was producing good solid 58 clear signals here in Norfolk. Unfortunately Peter was plagued with an S8 of local noise and had to resort to receiving via the remote SDR at Hack Green in order to hear everyone on the net clearly.

At this point John (G3OGE) called in from his QTH at Hornsea about 20miles north east of Hull. John said he could hear me and Peter (G3RQZ) but was having a little difficulty with Peter (G3PJB) and could not hear Mark (G0GQT). John was also suffering from a high noise floor, even on local 80m nets stations had to be S9+ to be heard. John said that his present long wire aerial was supported by the chimney and drops down as it crosses the rear garden. He still had to identify the noise source before he re-configures his antenna. If you have the space John, do consider a loop they are less prone to noise, or a small receive only loop made of a few-turns of wire on a frame or housed in some plastic pipe, being directional might allow you to null out the QRM and still transmit on your long wire. Food for thought I hope.

Peter (G3PJB) stated that John was 59 via the Hack Green SDR, and that he had known John and Val since 1958 and it was good to hear him again. It was probably the first time that he had worked John from his QTH at Hornsea.

Mark (G0GQT) told the group that he had been very fortunate to be home on 29th December this allowed him to enjoy the ‘opening’ on UHF/VHF. This opening coincided with the ‘VHF/ UHF activity contest’ held daily between 1400 – 1600 hrs between Christmas and the New Year.

I worked Mark on 144MHz before the ‘activity period’; he was a true armchair copy. He then went on to work the most amazing DX from his Rochester QTH. The best being SM7GVF at nearly 1,200km, with many other QSOs via the North Sea path into Northern Europe and Scandinavia. See attached link to view Mark’s impressive pattern of contacts in two hours.

NB. You will have to either move the map or zoom–out to view the truly distant stations. Roll the cursor over each indicator tabs to reveal call-sign and locator.

Mark continues to enter the weekly ‘activity sessions’ held on Tuesday evenings. In the 70cms series Mark holds 20th position. During his last session by switching to CW he secured a DL contact in JN49 square a distance of some 590km. Well done that man!

Mark went on to tell the group that the ‘shine’ was taken  off his success a little as he had leave home at 04.30hrs the following morning and struggle through atrocious WX to work. Even worse, on his return it took him over 3.5hrs to drive from Maidstone to Rochester, snow having closed Bluebell Hill.

Peter (G3RQZ) said he was unable to join in the fun during the ‘opening’ but did hear stations active on 3cms which was indicative of the stunning conditions on VHF and above.

I told the group that last week was the first time there had been no sun spots on the visible solar disc since May 2010. The general consensus is that our nearest star is entering a very ‘quiet state’ much earlier than the predicted minimum in 2020. This does not bode well for HF comms into foreseeable future.

With conditions in the doldrums on the higher frequencies it is good to have access to 60m. This band gives a fairly reliable inter-G (short skip) communications during daylight hours, without much troublesome QRM from adjacent administrations. Fortunately we still have a few frequencies that are almost UK use only. After dusk some interesting mid-range and DX contacts are to be had.  There has been marked increase in activity since 21st December when A class amateur radio operators in Germany gained access to the band between 5.351.5 to 5.366.5 MHz with 15 W EIRP. Even with this surge in use the UK has frequencies both above and below those allocated to German stations with a fairly narrow overlap that allows us to work our DL friends on this band.

On 60m a few days ago I had a very interesting extended conversation with John (OZ4JU) at 1800hrs. He had been calling on 5.403.5 for a long period without a response; he was the only station audible on an apparent ‘dead’ band.  It goes to prove that the lower bands are very rarely totally void of activity and perseverance pays.

At 14.55 we were called by Gary (2E0PCL) near Bridlington; although not a CC member he had been attracted by the activity on the relatively quiet band. Gary’s licence restricts him to 50watts output, when fed to his long wire antenna this moderate power produced a very respectable 58 signal at my QTH. He went on to tell the group that his WX was cloudy with an air temperature of 6c and that he had been listening with interest for some time. We gave Gary a very brief history of the Clifton and background to the CC net.

Colin (G0UJK) announced his presence saying that he had mistaken the time of the net. In part this was due to finding that he had a problem with his Super-loop antenna. In the meantime he had deployed a doublet fed with open wire feeder. Unfortunately the replacement antenna was susceptible local noise, so that like Peter (G3PJB) Colin had to rely on the remote SDR at Hack Green to hear all stations clearly. He certainly did not need the assistance of Hack Green to receive Peter (G3PJB) as they both live in Swanley.

Peter (G3PJB) told the group that he had purchased a 12v car battery in order to use his 300watt solid state linear during the next CC net.

He was a little disappointed that he could not hear more stations on his new IC7300. Peter was planning to improve his reception by resetting the filtering manually from the original factory settings. The very best of luck with that Peter, it sounds like hours of fun.

Colin said his local QRM had increased since a neighbour had installed PV solar panels, particularly on 10 MHz which had become unusable due to an S9 of wideband pulsing QRM that appeared to peak in strong sunlight.

If you are on good terms with your neighbour, one solution may be to retro-fit several clip-on ferrites to the feed lines at inverter end and to the mains outlet; with luck this will suppress most of the QRM.

As a guide, I used Fair-rite split cores (part number 0431176451) on my PV system. These are large cores with sizable apertures but I did have the advantage of fitting them during the installation. The result is a noise free system.

Before the net I received apologies from Brian (G3OYU) who has been prevented from replacing his 80m antenna by the atrocious WX. He is had also learnt that he is in line for ‘pacemaker’. With this event on the horizon Brian has been busy conjuring an effective balun to eliminate stray RF from his shack.

Good luck Brian, I am sure we all wish a speedy recovery from the procedure.

As the time approached 15.30 signals from the near continent were becoming evident, it was timely to close the net.

The next Clifton Country Club Net is scheduled for Sunday 12th February at 1500hrs
Due to the turbulent nature of the bands, the frequency will be confirmed nearer the date.

Catch you on the wireless!

73es 88s de Tony es Suzanne.

Clifton Country Club Net Sunday 15th January 2017

Whatho Cliftonaires!

The first Clifton Country Club net of 2017 is scheduled for this Sunday 15th January.  Prevailing conditions in the afternoon on 40m are still producing extended skip, making most inter-G contacts not viable. Unless you wish to communicate with the extremities of Scotland and far west Cornwall.

However, this afternoon 80m was a far better option, with inter-G QSOs involving stations from all areas of the UK.

At 15.25hrs today I had a solid SSB contact with G8MNY in Croydon with 59+10db reports both ways, although European stations were just beginning generate some QRM as we slid into dusk.

Conditions would suggest that we hold this Sunday’s net on or very near 3.690MHz commencing at 14.30hrs  to avoid the developing interference from near Europe.

The WX forecast looks as if winter has us in its icy grip, time to stay in the warm and fire up that wireless!

Catch you on the wireless!

73 de Tony es Suzanne.

Clifton Country Club Net Sunday 6th November 2016

At 14.55 John (G3FNZ) responded immediately to my first tentative call, stunningly he was romping into Norfolk with a solid 59+ signal. John reported that I was a very readable signal with him, unlike previous occasions where he and others had to abandon the net due lack of propagation.

For the first time in three months the ‘radio gods’ appeared to be smiling on us.

Therefore when Peter (G3PJB) and Peter (G3RQZ) announced their presence minutes later it was good reports all round! It was only later that Peter (G3RQZ) mentioned he was running 50watts instead of his normal QRO output, the linear amplifier was on stand-by should it be necessary later.

John (G3FNZ) thanked me for the information on re-validation of his licence. He had phoned Ofcom and found them very helpful, more so when realised that the new validation date applied all the radio licences held by him, both amateur and marine. John re-iterated, that it was such a pleasure to be able to hear all those on the net, over the previous months he had become convinced that the overwhelming QRM combined with the lack of good propagation might force him to off the air.

Peter (G3PJB) in Swanley was still suffering from local noise had had taken the option to listen via the remote SDR site at Hack Green. Using this method he found all those currently on the net very readable. Although he had discovered he lost his internet connection when in transmit, causing the ‘waterfall’ display to freeze or disappear (whoops!). Peter strongly suspected RF in the shack due to standing waves on the feeder for his G5RV doublet, more of this later.

Colin (G0UJK) a fellow resident of Swanley called in at 1501hrs having just returned from the radio rally at Kempton Park. Colin went on to tell the group that the rally was a true social occasion as he had met Clifton members namely Lawrie (G4FAA), Phil (G3BSN) and Terry (G0GTO), together with many other amateurs who he has ‘worked’ over recent months. During his conversation with Lawrie (G4FAA), Lawrie had said he was hoping hold a “Clifton ‘delayed’ Christmas dinner”.

Over the past twenty five years or so these ‘delayed Christmas dinners’ have been held during the first weeks of January. The club often benefitted from the post festive season by having a choice of venues that were not overcrowded and were keen to attract custom.

Good on you Lawrie, what a good idea!  If you want me to circulate any proposed dates or venues I will be only too pleased to do so. Please contact me Lawrie!

Mark (G0GQT) put his head above the parapet at 15.04 he also having just returned from Kempton Park. Mark was not the strongest signal in the group as he was using a 40m dipole for this band. Mark said he had been a little disappointed with rally in that the range of ‘hardware’ on offer was a little limited, as it seemed to be dominated by the bigger traders.  Mark was looking for suitable bits of kit for his next DX trip, wherever it will be is not finally fixed yet. However Mark confirmed it will be an ‘island operation’.

Peter (G3PJB) had just purchased an early Christmas present, namely an Icom 7300. He had read widely on this new radio, also he noted that Peter (G3RQZ) was using one last month.  Now having had a chance to use an IC7300 on air he was impressed and could understand why this new SDR self-contained transceiver was proving so popular.

I told Peter (G3PJB) that I had worked several stations using the IC7300 and heard nothing but good reports on this new ‘rig’ from Icom. They have obviously formulated a true ‘winner’; a fairly compact 100watt HF transceiver with both 6m and 4m on board, together with the versatility of firmware upgrades being available into the future. By today’s standards it is priced fairly competitively.

Peter (G3PJB) went on to say that he had traded in his fifteen year old Kenwood TS 2000 against the new IC7300.

Golly Peter, I have got a TS2000, I would have never though that particular Kenwood radio would still be in production sixteen years after introduction, but it is!

John (G3FNZ) thanked Colin for the information regarding the probably ‘Clifton late Christmas do’. He hoped it was not to be the last such function, as John and the Clifton club go back a very long way, to the beginning in fact. John said he would make every effort to attend the event should it be organised.

The net was being held this weekend as next week is Remembrance Sunday, John told the group he would be at a Remembrance Service to be held at Royal Navy National Destroyer memorial at Chatham Dockyard.

At this point, Peter (G3PJB) said that he was having difficulty hearing John (G3FNZ) and Mark (G0GQT) via the Hack Green remote receiver. Strange business this wireless Peter! He went on to say that he had spoken to Denis (G3OKY) on the telephone and that Denis would try and listen using a temporary wire antenna hung out of the window.

I told the group that here in Norfolk continuing strong northerly winds were bringing heavy rain in from the North Sea the ambient temperature was 4.8c with wind chill making it feel like 0c. Yesterday the high winds and rain had caused a substantial branch to fall from one of our ash trees and crash through my 80m loop. Fortunately as it is supported by 8mm rope attached to industrial bungees via pulleys, the antenna gave way and was pinned to the ground but remained intact.

As the show (net) must go on! Suzanne and I braved the pouring rain and gales to dismantle the branch (18ft long and 8ins diameter) and clear it. On release the 286ft long loop just flew back into position.

Peter (G3RQZ) said that as conditions were apparently changing he had fired up his 400w linear to help those who may be struggling. Peter had guests staying therefore he was going to sign out of the group but before he did he passed his best wishes to Denis (G3OKY) who he hoped was listening.

Before Peter closed I took the opportunity to forward apologies from Brian (G3OYU) who was still indisposed due to surgical treatment to re-establish his hearing. Brian hoped to be available next month if all went well. He did say that he would make an attempt to listen but under the circumstances this may prove difficult.

Brian, the gathered company wish you the very best of good fortune on your road to recovery.

Colin (G0UJK) told the group that he had been assisting install new antennas at Peter’s (G7ULL) QTH in Chislehurst including a three element Cushcraft HF Yagi together with a ZS6BKW doublet which is a form of modified G5RV. If I recall correctly the ZS6BWK presents better (or different) matching to the feed line. Like the original G5RV design it is akin to the curate’s egg; good in places!

As time edged towards 15.45hrs John (G3FNZ) signed out as he and Beryl were being taken to tea at their grandson’s new house. See you next month John and here is hoping that these good conditions continue.

Peter (G3PJB) said that he and Doris were planning to spend Christmas away to let someone else worry about the catering etc. Sounds highly sensible Peter!

Peter, thinking about your problem with RF affecting your internet connection and hopefully not telling you something you already know.

At this location RF does not affect my internet, primarily because I use an ADSL line junction unit where the line enters the house. This means all telephone wiring with in the house is decoupled at this point and does not act as an antenna. My BT hub is fed directly from the ADSL socket. Previously I used to use the supplied plug-in ‘dangly filters’, these are dreadful as the telephone wiring within the house is still connected to the internet line, our internet used drop out at the slightest sniff of HF (1.8 to 10MHz).

If perchance you are still using the dreaded ‘dangly filters’ it may be very beneficial to fit an ADSL socket where you telephone enters your property, this will make the ‘dangly filters’ redundant. These units(and fitting instructions) are available from the following supplier:

Hopefully there is not much exposed telephone line ‘up-stream’ of the point where it enters your QTH. I am very fortunate here in that the house is fed by underground armoured cable (Belden) which runs from a telegraph pole some 75mtrs away which we insisted upon when we built the house.

Of course you are fully aware that is illegal for any unauthorised work to be carried out on the BT network………..Heaven forbid that you would even think about installing your own ADSL box!

As I was closing the net at 16.04, I just heard Denis (G3OKY) breaching the background hiss. Denis said he had been listening and he was using a very temporary wire antenna dangled over a chair and out of a near-by window.

Denis, you could be heard in deepest Norfolk with 45 signals and heavy QSB. It was jolly nice to know that you had been keeping us company.

Well done that man!

Unfortunately Peter (G3PJB) said that Denis was just detectable on Hack Green but Peter was unable to resolve his signal.

Being ever hopeful, we look forward to a further improvement in conditions next month.

Finally, I received a number of comments from those who viewed the TV programme concerning antennas and neighbours etc. I whole heartedly agree with the majority who kindly understated that the radio amateur in question was not the best  ambassador for our hobby. Fortunately it was screened on a minority TV channel that apparently caters for the lowest common denominator within its audience base. To quote, their shallowness runs deep!

To more important matters:

Our next Clifton Country Club Net is scheduled for Sunday 11th December at 1500hrs on or near 3.690MHz

Catch you on the wireless!  Especially if you are part of the increasing band of QRP desperados that can be found on 5.262 MH

73 es 88s de Tony es Suzanne.

Clifton Country Club Net Report Sunday 9th October 2016

Tony has sent through this report of the Clifton Country Club Net held on  Sunday 9th October 2016.

John (G3FNZ) was calling as I manipulated the controls of the ATU to improve the match on the full wave loop. He was the first station heard on the ‘new season’ of CC Nets following our summer recess. It is quite thought provoking to realise that the CC Net is in its fourteenth year.

John was quickly followed by Peter (G3RQZ); both stations were producing extremely readable signals here in Norfolk. Unfortunately this was not reciprocal as John was still burdened by high levels of noise and when the unstable propagation took its toll on my signal he was unable to hear me.

Frank (G3WMR) joined the group at 14.32 (GMT), unfortunately Frank’s audio was a little distorted and the gathered company had some difficulty resolving his transmission.

John (G3FNZ) told the net he had sold his caravan and had not been on top form over the past weeks, but he was still working on and enjoying displaying his Austin 7.

He said he was not having any difficulty hearing Peter (G3RQZ) but was experiencing difficulty with Frank and myself.

At this point Mark (G0GQT) called in, he was readable but not very strong at my QTH, also QSB took its toll.

Over the past days, I had pondered over whether to use 40m or 80m for the net.

I finally decided on 80m following a QSO with Peter (G3RQZ) 24hrs before, when I received very reassuring report of 59 while running 5w output from my KX3.

The deep QSB during the net was indicative that turbulent conditions still prevailed.

At 14.41(GMT) John (G3OGE) made his first CC Net appearance on 80m for several years. However, he had made his debut on 40m during last October’s CC Net since returning from France. John told the group that he was domiciled in the village of Hornsea on the coast about 15miles north east of Hull. John was one of the strongest signals on the net with a very solid 59+10db; this was generated from a 42m length of wire suspended from his chimney.

Peter (G3RQZ) said that John was also very strong at his QTH in Surrey. Peter was using his trusty FT1000 driving his TL922 linear. He had recently acquired a new IC7300 SDR based transceiver, which he had used yesterday during our preparatory QSO. Peter kept this very neat new radio in the conservatory which gave him access to the bands without having to leave the domestic comfort to operate. So far Peter had found the receive performance and flexibility of this new rig quite remarkable, more so considering the cost.

He went on to say although it had been some time since he had sold his Austin 7 he still had several spares that John (G3FNZ) may find useful.

As the clock registered 14.52 (GMT) Peter (G3PJB) announced his presence with a very effect 58/59 signal. Again the propagation was apparently only one way! Peter stated that he was losing my transmissions in deep troughs of QSB. The distance between us was obviously a major factor (and his local QRM). I reluctantly increased my output to 200w in an effort to compensate for this QSB.

Peter told the group that next Thursday (13/10) he will have completed his 84th orbit round our nearest star. Congratulations and many happy returns from all the Clifton Peter!

Frank (G3WMR) now remerged from the background hiss with greater degree of clarity, albeit his signal strength was not the strongest. Frank had changed his 12v supply cable to the rig. He had noted that on other QSOs he had received reports of distorted audio; he strongly suspected corrosion to the in-line fuse holders. This change had certainly rectified the poor audio quality.

Mark (G0GQT) told the group that he had been involved in the weekday activity contests on 2m, 70cms and 6m at present he held 30th position on 2m and 22nd on 70cms. Mark had achieved ‘runner-up’ in the “Sweeper Section” of the RSGB VHF Field Day. Having only just been missed the top score by a few points. Well done that man!

For those like me, who were unaware of the “Sweeper Section” in the VHF field day, Mark explained it is designed to encourage fixed stations enter the contest. However, they are not allowed to call CQ, only work those stations calling CQ. Quite an interesting concept as it should increase the number of likely contacts for the ‘portable’ stations in the field as well as stimulating involvement by those who are for whatever reason unable to operate as portable.

Mark went on to tell the group that in 2017 he was looking at working some meteor scatter as well planning another DX expedition following his highly successful activation on the Isle of Lundy earlier this year.

John (G3OGE) stated that he had employed the services of an antenna installation company to fix his 2m co-linear to his chimney; they also deployed his 42m wire antenna (approx. ½ wave on 80m). He was rather surprised when these contractors stated that they would not be coming back as they were unhappy to work at these excessive heights? Er, can’t get the staff!

Peter (G3RQZ) recalled the only contest that he entered as an individual was on 3cms when the tuning tolerances were up to 50 MHz and the QSO were usually pre-booked by telephone. He went on to tell the group that he has need of a tree surgeon as the over the past decade the trees adjacent to his mast had grown to such an extent they prevented the lowering and rotation of his mast mounted antennas.

My transmission although clearly received throughout by Peter (G3RQZ) and John (G3OGE), others in the group had struggled against heavy QSB. As time progressed towards 15.30 Hrs my signals became strong enough to overcome the local noise suffered by Peter (G3PJB), Frank (G3WMR) and Mark (G0GQT).

Local noise is the bane of amateur radio operators especially the lower bands of 40m, 80m and top-band, and more so if your QTH is in an urban or suburban environment. If you suffer from this plague you have my deepest sympathy. During the past weeks on 60m local QRM has been a recurring topic, from which I deduce that there are two ways to live with this nuisance. The first is to use internet technology to “receive” via the Hack Green SDR. The purists may not like this, but a continuing S9 hash has driven many to despair, forcing them to abandon the hobby.

Others have adopted the second method of having a separate receive antenna. This is normally a small (magnetic) loop, one or two meters in diameter. These loops need not necessarily very high and can be indoors. The directional characteristics of these loops give the ability to null out noise from a particular source, also these antenna are very much less vulnerable to spurious ‘electrical mush’.  Magnet loops require re-tuning about every 35/45 KHz when used to transmit. However are much more tolerant on receive with a useable bandwidth of 150+ KHz. Only requiring one retune to cover all the SSB allocation on 80m. These receiving loop are easily constructed from 10.3 mm coax or surplus wire. There many simple designs on the internet but they all require a fairly good variable capacitor (ex-broadcast receiver). It does not have to be wide spaced as there are no high transmit voltages. A few years ago I constructed a 1mtr dia. mag-loop from UR67 it tuned 15m through to 40m and could be made work on 80m by switching a 1000pf across the 500pf VC. Did it work?

Yes extremely well! I recall listening to a VK6 working into KH7 on 20m, the loop was leaning against an internal wall of a ground floor room in my late mother-in-law’s flat. In the same situation a short loaded wire antenna had resulted in S7 to S8 of QRM.

All you need is about 3 or 4mtr of UR67 and variable capacitor some wooden dowel rods to make a frame, a slow motion or low gearing method to ease tuning. And here comes low noise reception!

Most modern receivers have so much gain an antenna with a lower efficiency can be an advantage.

Interestingly while writing this summary I came across an article on the advantages of loop antennas in ‘The RSGB Antenna Collection’ (1991edition) p.106 written by John (G3FNZ). A jolly interesting read John!

Ironically John (G3FNZ) had signed out of the net at 14.52 due to levels of local QRM obliterating the incoming signals.

We concluded the net with Peter (G3PJB) telling the group that he was looking forward to testing his newly acquired SDR ‘Play’ unit that will turn his computer in a sophisticated all band all mode receiver. This will happen once he has deciphered the 80page on line manual.

Oh Golly! Peter I wish you luck!

Prior to the net I received apologies from Brian (G3OYU) who had recently undergone surgery to restore his hearing and was awaiting further treatment at the end of October. He sends his best regards and hopes to be on November’s net. Brian OM, please accept our best wishes for a speedy recovery!

Following the net I received the following from Ian (G0PDZ) who had been unavoidably detained on RNLI duties as described below:

Apologies for missing the net on Sunday. I was out on a lifeboat on an extended passage exercise to test some new crew & a member who wants to be signed off as a navigator. We took a relief boat from Ramsgate along the north Kent coast up the Swale, at low water, out into the Medway & back. Nudging our way up what was little more than a stream with centimetres under the keel was real fun & something very different for the crew more used to operating out in the Thames Estuary or English Channel.

Ian went on say he now has long pole on the side of his QTH which support a co-linear for 6m,2m and 70cms also a 5.8GHz dish that uses Ian’s internet connection facilitate ‘echo-link’ on  local 70cms repeater (GB3EK). HF wire antennas had been temporarily removed and await a new more permanent mast at the rear of the premises. All being well, Ian hopes to be on November’s CC Net.

Many thanks to all who made the effort and struggled against the less than excellent conditions that prevailed on 80m.

To avoid Remembrance Sunday on 13th November the next Clifton Country Club Net is scheduled for Sunday 6th November at 15.00hrs GMT hopefully on 3.690 MHz however depending on conditions we may opt for 7.125 MHz the frequency will be confirmed nearer the time.

Catch you on the wireless!

Especially if you happen to be lurking round 5.262 MHz the 60m QRP allocation.

73 es 88s de Tony es Suzanne.

Clifton Country Club Net Sunday 9th October 2016

Tony sends through his latest heads-up regarding the next Clifton Country Club Net.

Whatho Gang!

The first Clifton Country Club of the new season is scheduled for this coming Sunday 9th October  but unfortunately after nearly four months since the last CC Net we  still appear to be between a rock and hard place! As the state of propagation on either 40m or 80m does not bode well for inter-G communication during daylight hours.

During the afternoons on 40m I have not heard any UK stations directly, only mid Europeans working back to G-land.  Equally on 80m I have only heard the occasional inter-G contact. Although poor, conditions appear to improve in the late afternoon. To test conditions I have made a few QRP SSB contacts on 80m around 3.30pm.

With this in mind I suggest that we start the Clifton CC net at 3.30pm (local) this coming Sunday on or near 3.690Mhz.

I look forward to hearing what has been happening over the summer in your neck of the woods.

Catch you on the wireless!

73 de Tony es Suzanne.

(Also circulated via the G3GHN reflector)

Clifton Country Club Net Sunday 15th May 2016

My hopes were high that conditions would have improved since last month having made a couple of solid inter-G QRP contacts over the previous days on both 40m & 80m.
However these expectations were dashed soon after Mark (G0GQT) had responded at 2.50pm for Clifton following my call for members on 7.125MHz.

Mark was about to describe his experiences on his recent expedition to Lundy Island with the Virtual Radio Group, when his signal strength suddenly fell from and S8 to an S2. Mark suggested we try 7.105MHz where his local noise was less. I moved to this new QRG but soon lost Mark completely as he spiralled down in QSB. I return to the original net frequency and called for other members until 3.10pm without success.  During this time however, I was called by Mark (GB2EM); a windmills on the air special event station from Elstead Mill Surrey.  The signal was also very poor; not a good weekend to run a special event station.

At 3.10pm I moved to 3.690MHz after several calls Peter (G3PJB) replied. Again signals were very unstable and readability poor. Peter and I struggled to maintain a QSO with the occasional few words being lost during the swings in QSB.

It was obviously worse for Peter as his noise floor as hovering around S7.

I agreed with Peter with propagation like this and having to contend high levels of local QRM it was not surprising fewer are joining and some are abandoning the hobby.
Reflecting on these words I recounted a QSO on 40m a few days early between two newly licenced stations discussing the merits of ‘Echolink’……… “It’s wonderful, you don’t have to bother with a rig or an antenna, there is no interference and you get through every time to DX places like VK and ZL………”

Almost like using your mobile phone Eh?  (No comment!).

Needless to say with the prevailing conditions, Peter and I concluded the net at 3.24pm.  Ironically I was then called by Stuart (GB2TM) from Bishopstone Tide Mill, Newhaven. Stuart explained that mill was fairly unique in its use of tidal flow to provide motive power, fascinating! I wished Stuart well and relinquished the frequency to him at 3.30pm.
After the net I received an email from Mark (G0GQT) expanding on his experiences on the Island of Lundy that is posted below and the photos attached. From the pictures it is easy to see why Mark had a wonderful time on this beautifully remote island.

The callsign we were using for HF was MX0VRC.

I used my callsign /p for the 2Mtr UKAC contest on the Tuesday evening and had a superb result. I came sixth out of 169 entries, worked 17 UK squares and six non-UK squares. (This equates to my score multiplied by 40). Scoring is one point per kilometre. I made 98 qso’s and scored just over 1 Million points (best ever from home is just over 200,000). Although once it was adjudicated I finished up with just under 1 million points for the contest. For sixth place I get 970 points out of a possible 1000 for this month’s contest.
This in turn moves my league position from 35th to 29th out of well over 200 stations in the 2Mtr section. The big reason for my popularity was not only being on Lundy but also being in IO71 square which is as rare as rocking horse droppings.

Running a Trio TR751E and 85 watts (microwave mod 100w linear) 9ele Tonna on a Racal 40ft mast only up about 27ft. When the contest finished I knew I had done well but could not check claimed scores as no internet on the island and only one bar on the mobile when the wind blew in the right direction.

But I was on the ceiling for hours after the finish. What a buzz!

I also received an email from Ian (G0PDZ) who also operating a ‘windmills on the air’ station and was listening for the CC Net as he explains below:

I was at the White Mill, Sandwich, GB2WM. I did listen & call briefly shortly after 3pm on 7.125, but nothing was heard; like most of the weekend!

When members of the public ventured near, when we would evangelise about the hobby, to the background of hiss & burble of idle HF radios with no signals to activate them. Even the PSK31 screen showed an indecipherable jumble of characters that would not even cause the occasional passing youth to linger! Of course 40m did open 30mins before we closed down!

On the home front, I’m now active on 2m SSB. Taking part in UKAC & the Monday, Wednesday & Friday activity sessions, subject to other demands. I hope to get some other antenna fixings installed very soon to allow VHF & UHF FM activity & the installation of experimental wires to see if I can get on HF.

Thanks for that Ian! Hey, we may even be able to hook up on 2m SSB in future, I look forward to it!

Also Lawrie (G4FAA) was running a station at the Meopham Mill in Kent. The poor conditions took their toll resulting no contact with the net.

John (G3FNZ) also could not hear us, not through want of trying. We are ever hopeful John for an improvement next month.

Brian (G3OYU) is still sans antenna, but is making progress since his recent eye surgery.
Peter (G3RQZ) was attending a christening. Er! You didn’t miss much Peter!
Frank (G3WMR) was in Jersey with his trusty FT817 and dipole, said we would be calling and listening on 40m. I did not hear him but Mark (G0GQT) did, and they had a reasonable QSO. Oh the vagaries wireless! Well done Mark!

As an aside, today I had my Elecraft KX3 back from the service department of W&S. The engineer tells me that they re-calibrated it to be more tolerant of high ambient temperatures. Hopefully this will prevent the set locking up and allow me to switch it back on when the radio has reached temperatures approaching 40c. Unfortunately I will not be able to put this to the test as we have no immediate plans to operate the KX3 in a tropical environment.

Well that’s it folks for the May CC net, thanks to all those who struggled to join the net in vain.

Next Month’s CC Net will be on Sunday 11th June at 1500Hrs (BST) on either 7.125MHz or 3.690MHz depending on the prevailing conditions. It can only get better!

Due to our annual summer recess June’s net will be the last until October.

Catch you on the wireless!

73 es 88s de Tony es Suzanne.

cliftoncc-lundy3 cliftoncc-lundy4 cliftoncc-lundy5 cliftoncc-lundy1 cliftoncc-lundy2

G3MGQ’s Month on the Air – November 2015

Phil, G3MGQ has sent through his ‘Month on the Air’ for November which contains lots of DX information including the big contests to look out for and those to possibly avoid! Enjoy November’s edition of Month on the Air.

G3MGQ’s Month on the Air

Prepared by the clubs RSGB trainer, G3MGQ, you will find the latest DX contests including the ones to shoot for as well as ones to give a wide berth. Why not download the latest edition of Month on the Air and enjoy your DX just that little bit more.

Become a member of HERC

Join the Hastings Electronics and Radio Club.

Why not join one of the largest and most established Radio clubs in the South East of England? Very low joining cost, and free for a year to new licencees.

Vital Spark Archive

Vital Spark newsletter articles

Take a look through a large selection of articles written by club members over the years which have been published in the monthly Vital Spark newsletter .

Used Ham Radio Equipment

View HERC's Used Ham Radio Equipment for sale list..

Every four weeks, HERC's Used Ham Radio Equipment for sale list is updated on the site. Bookmark the gear for sale page to re-visit easily and take advantage of the used equipment on sale through the club.

Club Photographs

HERC Image Galleries.

Here is the official HERC photograph archive which contains multiple image galleries spanning several decades since the club was formed many years ago. Enjoy the images!

UK Amateur Radio Repeaters

UK repeaters

Click button above for full list, or a local repeater callsign below for info.

GB3EB 2m in Uckfield- Active
MB6EB 2m DStar Node in Eastbourne - Active
MB6RY Wires-X DigiGate in Broad Oak - Active
GB3HE 70cm in Hastings - Active
GB7HE 70cm DStar in Hastings - Coming soon
GB3ZX 70cm in Eastbourne - Low Power
GB3JT 23cm ATV in Hastings - NoV cleared
GB7RY 70cm X-Wires Repeater Rye - Active
GB7ES Eastbourne - DSTAR Rpt. - Active
GB3ES 2m in Hastings - Active

For a complete list of repeaters, head over to
the UK Amateur Radio repeaters list.

Popular pages

Get your amateur radio licence - Find out more about amateur radio licence training.
Month on the Air - G3MGQ's popular monthly DX contest/expedition list.
Wilf Gaye Memorial Cup - The clubs annual operating event in the memory of Wilf Gaye M0GYE.
St. Richard's College Buildathon/STEM/ARISS - HERC attends St. Richard's Catholic College for their various events surrounding the Tim Peake ARISS contact.
G3BDQ - John Hey's Rare QSL Cards.
Sussex Electronics Radio Fair - SERF Sussex Electronics Radio Fair 2016.
Vital Spark - A selection of articles re-published from the Vital Spark.
RSGB News - Find out how to get RSGB news on your mobile or PC.
Experimenters Corner - A selection of Proteus projects by Bob Gornal (G7DME)
BBADL - Bath Based Distance Learning Course.
Conquest Hospital Radio - Presented by HERC member Antony (G4CUS).
Radio Rallies 2016 - An up to date list of radio rallies scheduled for 2016.
Club QSL Cards - A selection of QSL cards the club has received over the years.
Other Newsletters - Excellent newsletters and magazines from other clubs.
TX Factor episodes - Take a look at the TX Factors YouTube videos.
John Taplin - A bio of the late John Taplin.

Amateur Radio Resources

Other Radio Clubs & RAYNET

BSARS - Brede Steam Amateur Radio Society

RAYNET - The Hastings and Rother RAYNET Group.

HERC members sites

Sigord - Gordon Sweet
Hastings Radio Comms - Andrew Haas-Campbell
Hoofbags - Liz Costa