THE CATSWHISKER – SEPTEMBER 1999

Greetings to all members, friends and readers.

There are good things to read about this month, along with a fair degree of optimism.

For starters, the Weymouth Carnival Special Event Station was up and running for a second year – yet another success due to the several members and friends who helped and supported. Thanks to all. There is always room for improvement so we will build on these experiences for next year.

By the time most of you see this Catswhisker, the HF SSB Field Day contest will be upon us; it is at the New Barn site at Bradford Peverell , 4/5 September, (same place as International Marconi Day) so if you want to escape the Dorchester Show come along and have a look or even give a hand.

The two-metre Monday net is doing well with Bill G0NRQ in the driving seat; SDRS also has a page on the Web thanks to Geoff G0EVW. which is attracting worldwide attention.

There is more about these stories as you read on. Let’s keep things moving along in this spirit of optimism for the sake of the Club.

73 de John, M0BQO

For your diary

Sept 5th (Sun.) (if anyone is in the Bristol area – i.e. not with our SSB Field Day team): Bristol Radio and Computer Rally at Temple Meads.

Sept 7th Club meeting: Robert G0RYL with his postponed lecture on aerials and feeders. NB – at Chickerell Church Hall

Ideas for future meetings include video of 1998-99 season, look at archive material, quiz, talks by members.

Volunteers still wanted!

Meeting Place

As the Charlestown Social club venue is no longer available to us (at least, until further notice), we have booked Chickerell Church Hall.

Directions: Continue past the Social Club for another mile when at the bottom of a dip you will see East Street, with a brown sign to ‘Turks Head Inn’. In East Street, take first right and it’s down there. If you overshoot, there’s a roundabout two hundred yards further on.

Here’s a shot of Mike, G0NEV visiting the Land of Nod whilst on duty at the Marconi Day Station. G7JIM just happened to have his camera handy! We hope that once the summer rush is over and things quieten down at Mike’s Emporium, he will be able to continue his Visiting USA series.

JIM’S PAGE – from G7JIM

I would like to thank these members of the SDRS for the help that they gave me and my XYL Gill on our stall at the bootsale section of Hamfest at Wimborne on August 8th. It was greatly appreciated by us both. Thanks once again to Neville 2E1HFY and Philip 2E1FWP. We did some brisk trading and most of the items we had for sale on the table were sold but not all hi. When I left home at 8.15am on the day of Hamfest the weather was not very good at all and when we arrived it was raining very hard indeed (we nearly did not set up the table at all). Then we had a break in the weather which was in our favour and we decided to set up our stall and as soon as we did the sun came out and we really enjoyed ourselves.

I wonder if there are any club members that would be kind enough to come and give me a helping hand or two in erecting a G5RV antenna which I bought at Hamfest (at least one must be a class A licence holder) this is to test my HF radio which is a FT747GX.

Best 73 to you all from Jim G7JIM & Gill (SWL)

WEYMOUTH CARNIVAL DAY SPECIAL EVENT STATION

Wednesday August 18th stayed blustery and showery all day though it was dry enough in the morning to assemble the willing helpers and gear, and get the station up and running.
The 40-foot mast was pumped up to maximum, with a G5RV draped from it in inverted-V configuration aligned north-south. Through it went the 100W output from a TS 850 transceiver.
The 40 metre band was poor in the morning, only a handful of successful QSOs being possible. In fact, all HF bands were difficult. By the afternoon things had improved and 40m was strong with plenty of contacts both in UK and many European countries, resulting in a total count of 69 QSOs.

Guest operator Dave, G4RQI opened the proceedings; the chair was then occupied by Bill G0NRQ, Mike G7HNY and Alex G3KKJ. Now and again there were interruptions form noisy floats and performing aircraft, all to add to the jollity of the occasion. There was the usual stream of welcome visitors though perhaps fewer than last year due to the uncertain weather.

The ‘shack’ was the refurbished horse box belonging to Mike, G7HNY, who is seen here, during a Spitfire attack! While Mike was talking to a German operator some of his transmission was drowned out by the sound of an aircraft. Mike took the greatest pleasure in explaining to this heavily-accented contact that the offending aircraft was a Spitfire from WWII. Whether he was impressed by the irony of the situation doesn’t seem to have been recorded!

HAMFEST

Despite the threatening weather, this year’s Hamfest proved as friendly and interesting as always though it seemed that some traders stayed away or arrived late.
For SDRS, Jim G7JIM was the star: in the absence of the normal bring-and-buy Jim invited members to sell their items from his car boot table; several took up the offer and the result of Jim levying a ‘tax’ on the sales benefited the Club by about £10.

TWO METRE NET

Since the Monday evening 2-metre net re-started a few weeks ago, replacing the top-band one, there has been terrific interest from members and non-members in Novice, A and B licence categories, mostly in the Weymouth area but also Bournemouth/Poole and places North of the Ridgeway. The incentive to open this net was of course the relaxation of the licensing regulations giving Novices freedom of more bands. It’s good to see how well they, and many others, have responded.
It is ably conducted by Master of Ceremonies Bill, G0NRQ, who has tried to keep overs short and to the point with as many as eight operators patiently waiting their turn. We don’t know how many Short Wave Listeners are also eavesdropping on the frequency of 145.350MHz. It would be nice to know. Proceedings begin, by the way, at 8.00 pm usually winding up some time after 9.00.

CASUALTY CORNER

KEN O’BRIEN has to go into hospital on September 21st for a heart by-pass operation. First he’ll be at Southampton, then Dorchester. We wish him well and hope for a speedy recovery.
Get well wishes too to all other members and friends who may not be enjoying the best of health at present.

VISITING WEYMOUTH

On Monday Aug 9th there was a welcome addition to the 2-metre net – Geert Paulides, PE3GRT visiting Weymouth for a few days, discovered Neville, 2E1HFY on 2 metres and as a result he joined the Monday merry-go-round. He and his XYL arrived in the Harbour in their 31 ft. ketch Sarai, before going further west. Geert works as a health and safety officer in the oil industry but will be retiring in the next couple of years. He gave me his e-mail address: g.paulides@minez.nl and having now made contacts in this area he will welcome callers. Another address, http://www.veron.nl  gets you to his Radio Society from which there are several links including to their museum thence to the surplus radio society which provides details on converting PMR radios to amateur frequencies.