Sunday, 28 May 2017

Sunday on the bands....

Beautiful day here in Kingston, blues skies and a outdoor temperature of about 21C.  It seems summer has arrived.

It was an interesting day on the bands......we have had some enhanced geomagnetic activity, with very strong G3 storming observed at the higher latitudes early Sunday.  We ended up with a "K Index" of 1 and an "A Index" of 51!!

As a result most of the bands were pretty quiet, but 6m was wide open into the Southern States for most of the day and I managed to make a good number of contacts into LA, AL, FL, GA, and well as a few of the local nefarious characters here in VE3 land.  I should also point out that I don't have a real 6m antenna.....I simply tuned up my 80m OCF Dipole and used that.....

Attention now turns to providing the Rideau Lakes Cycle Tour with communications in 13 days time, and of course the highlight of the year.....the ARRL Field Day at the end of June.......big news about Field Day on this site next week.  Stay tuned.

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Portable Ops Day....

Next Sunday the long range weather forecast looks pretty good, so plans are under way to spend a few hours - for no reason -  out at a local spot operating portable.

We have had a lot of rain here in Kingston, the water levels are the highest ever recorded in the past 100 years, and currently our regular Field Day site is under a foot of water.   Luckily we have an alternative site sorted out just in case we can't get into the normal one.

Not much radio work going on around here, and from what I've been hearing about the conditions of the bands it doesn't sound like I'm missing out on any good DX.

I am expecting a surprise visitor this week, but more on that later in the week.

New toy in the shack, a West Mountain Radio powered help those of us who are going deaf....I'll do a write up and review on it after I've used it for a while.

Friday, 5 May 2017

XM3CARF Special Event Station

The Frontenac Amateur Radio Club will be sponsoring the special event call sign XM3CARF to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Canadian Amateur Radio Federation (CARF), which was founded in 1967 in Kingston, Ontario.

CARF was Canada's first successful national amateur radio society and existed between 1967 and 1993, when it was unfortunately amalgamated with the Canadian Radio Relay League to form the Radio Amateurs of Canada.

CARF was founded by Art Blick VE3AHU, Doug Burrill VE3CDC, and Ken Rollison VE3CRL.  These three fine gentlemen are all now Silent Keys.  

XM3CARF will be active on SSB, CW and various Digital Modes throughout the month of June, and will sign off shortly after the RAC Canada Day Contest on July 1st.

A page for XM3CARF has been set up, and the Frontenac Amateur Radio Club are looking forward to working as many stations as possible during this event. 

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Operating Portable...

VE3FI Operating Position
Great day yesterday in Grafton.  The weather was fantastic...19C most of the day under beautiful blue skies.  We couldn't, in fact, have asked for a better day.

The bands on the other hand were not so good.  20m and 40m were the only bands we heard stations on, but while we could loudly hear Moldovan and Kuwaiti stations they couldn't hear us, and mainly worked Europeans.  There was a lot of very deep QSB on the bands.

I did manage to make three contacts, one in Ohio, another in New Jersey, and the third in Indiana.  While they were not DX, they did help prove my system works.

Antennas of the day were a Chillycon 31' vertical and a W3EDP.  There was also an 80m OCF dipole permanently up at the location next to the little operating shack they have there.  We put the analyzer on the antennas before we used them and they all checked out fine.

Radio in use was my FT-897D which I was using for the second time since I bought it.  A nice little radio that works as advertised.

Looking forward to more of this type of operating.

The VE3FI set-up

Don VE3MNE, Jim VE3ULC, and Don VE3UNA.

Portable digital station of VE3ULC

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Off to Grafton....

Off to a wood lot near Grafton, Ontario, tomorrow for a day of portable operating with VE3MNE & VE3ULC.  Hopefully the rain will hold off long enough for us to get a tarp ready and get the equipment set up.

The FT-897D will be the radio is use tomorrow as well as the 31' "Chillycon Special" vertical antenna.

Photo's of the day to follow...