31 Jul 2017


About 15 minutes ago I went QRT on all bands and disconnected everything. Storms permitting, I plan to be on 20m FT8 around breakfast time tomorrow.

The Bull - NOT amateur radio

Today we visited Kentwell Hall near Long Melford, Suffolk, UK. We ate at a pub called "The Bull" in Long Melford. The pub, which opened about 1450 (quite old!) was excellent is all respects. Good service, good food, good prices, friendly, old. Recommended. We had ham, egg, peas and chips for £5.99 each. Although we did not have one, desserts were just £2.99 each with a decent choice.

20m FT8 tomorrow?

Tomorrow there is some thunder expected here in the afternoon. I may try FT8 on 20m tomorrow in the morning. I may adopt the auto sequencing system to see how this works. I can probably only manage a few hours before I have to disconnect everything to avoid the storm risk.

See https://www.lightningmaps.org/blitzortung/europe/index.php?lang=en .

Lack of personal touch - NOT amateur radio

Recently I have been playing ping pong with emails to and from my energy supplier. I keep saying "no reply wanted or expected" only to get yet another reply! Judging by the names, this comes from an automated call centre in India. Much of the letter appears to be computer generated, with maybe a small bit of human intervention, complete with spelling mistakes. I have nothing against call centres in India and wish these good people all the best.

What I really dislike is the lack of real human touch. Years ago you could ring your local bank. Now you get a call centre thousands of miles away and you are just a sort code and account number: they really don't know or care who you are.

Grumpy old man, me? Yes.

Regen 40m and 80m RX

A nice simple RX built by NG9D is demonstrated on YouTube.

10m WSPR

So far, 2 unique spots this morning early. It is now only 0825z, so this is probably good this early. Both look like Es (GMs).

UPDATE 1935z:  6 unique spots of my little 500mW 10m WSPR beacon today. Not as good as yesterday.

6m FT8 RX

At the moment I am on 6m FT8 RX. 5 stations copied this morning so far: all Gs by tropo or aircraft reflections probably. The 15 second TX period must help on paths that open only briefly.

I have a question. With FT8, does the auto QSO automatically sequence through the whole QSO or just auto respond to the first CQ answer received and then leave the rest to the operator?

UPDATE 1820z: Best DX on 6m FT8 RX today is K7BV (6360km) in FM04 square (N.Carolina) at 1653z at -15dB S/N. Judging by where he was being spotted, I am pretty sure this is genuine too. This seems a great mode.

Sunspots - Monday July 31st 2017

Solar flux remains at 69 (poor) and the sunspot number 11. A=4 and K=1.

30 Jul 2017

6m FT8

In the end I decided to download the beta version of WSJT-x V1.8 which includes FT8. I have taken a look on 50.313MHz and copied a few stations by Es and a G in IO91 calling CQ. Although I called him, he did not respond. There is always tomorrow.

UPDATE 2110z: G4NBS (14km) was my first FT8 QSO on 6m. Well on any band!  I am not sure the PSK Reporter Map upload is working properly. Several stations have been reported, but none appear to show.

UPDATE 2118z: Well it helps if you look on the right band! Doh! All is well.

Hedge trimming - NOT amateur radio

Our hedge in the front grows fast. I cut it about 2 months ago and it has grown about 6 inches since then. So, today it got a haircut! The worst part is picking up the leaves afterwards.

10m WSPR

Again, my 500mW 10m WSPR beacon is on. This was designed and made by W5OLF and is totally stand-alone. It does not need a PC. It has already been spotted in Italy and Germany. I use this "in the background" as it does not tie up the FT817 or PC, which I use on other bands and modes.

UPDATE 1156z: With 13 unique spots so far today on 10m WSPR TX, this is far better than yesterday. The spots are from all over Europe.

UPDATE 1505z:  Now 21 unique spots of my 500mW 10m WSPR beacon today.

UPDATE 1914z: 23 unique spots on 10m WSPR today. Quite a good day really.

6m JT65

The value of 6m JT65 was again witnessed this morning. Monitoring PSK Reporter Maps you can see who you are spotting and where others are receiving you, if on TX. As the JT65 allocation is quite small, all users tend to be in a similar place making activity concentrated. In fleeting Es openings it is quite easy to miss stations. This is far less likely with digital modes. They work with very weak signals and PSK Reporter Maps can give you a picture of activities and openings well after the event too. Although I have not tried it, I am told many 6m JT65 users have already switched to FT8 mode which is available in a beta release of WSJT-X. I am waiting until the official version comes out.

This morning, I was copied well over Europe with 6m JT65 (1W ERP). At the moment I am on 6m JT65 RX only.

UPDATE 1203z:   Lots of Es spots today on 6m JT65 RX from all over Europe.

UPDATE 1307z: Best DX on 6m JT65 RX is currently OH6GKW (1839km).

Sunspots - Sunday July 30th 2017

Solar flux is 69 today. Sunspot number is 12. A=4 and K=2.

QRP and QRP Club

Oleg's weekly update:

Dear Club 72 members and friends,

Weekly Rendezvous and Parade (WRP) Report (July, 30, 2017)
Happy Birthday to op. Slave RW3AA! In Saturday he was 72 years young.
The best wishes!
op. Victor RU3NJC finished his clinic procedures and go back to home.
Good health to Victor!
The 1'st MRP day was in Saturday. MRP means Micro Radio Parade - keep
activity  of  the simplest milliwatt radios. Parades have a place in
the same as "rendezvous" days in 10 UTC at 14060 kHz +/-
Users of any Micro-80, Pixie-2, FOXX, Chirpy, Lil'Squall, Pititico etc
are welcome to enjoy milliwatting!
All  other QRP operators are welcome also, but only we ask you to not
"CQ" and keep your ears open for milliwatt stations, please.
QRP  activity  in Saturday was super! So we have a lot of "1'st time"

Visitors  of  the  week:  UY1IF, OH6NPV, RV3GM, UR7VT, ON4AEF, DK1HW,
UA6BFE/p,  I2AOX,  R2FAE,  UR5IFM/p,  UR0ET,  G3JFS,  DK7SS,  DF1XC,

MRP "Parade Guardians" - UA1CEX, RV3GM, ON6KZ, OM6TC, UR0ET
New Frequenters - ON4AEF, SV8CYR, UA6BFE
Welcome  New  Visitors  - IV3EAD, M6MPC, DL1HRY, YU1CA, 7X2EZ, F8ALX,
See full Frequenters and Visitors lists on the Club 72 site
See  full  version  of the WRP Report including a lot of comments and
pictures on the blog  page - https://qrp-club72.blogspot.ru/
See you all on the next week "rendezvous" and MRParades!

72! Oleg RV3GM / KH6OB "Mr. 72"

This is a periodic Newsletter of the Club 72. Don't reply to Newsletter address! Send any requests or news to mr72@club72.su please.

29 Jul 2017


As the Es seems to have stopped, I went QRT on all bands at 2110z. Depending on where the storm risk is, I hope to be on again tomorrow. At the moment the storms are mainly over Belgium.

See https://www.lightningmaps.org/blitzortung/europe/index.php?lang=en

Another site - NOT amateur radio

My wife sings in a local choir and I do their website for them: Cambridgeshire Choral Society. If you are local, you may want to join.

See www.cambschoral.org.uk

10m WSPR TX (again)

Yet again, I am on 10m WSPR TX (500mW) with my little W5OLF WSPR beacon hoping for more Es. Yesterday there were 16 unique spots. The day before there were 40 uniques. So far today nothing! Is the main Es season drawing to a close?

UPDATE 1454z:  6 unique spots today, so far, of my little 500mW 10m WSPR beacon from all over Europe. There does seem to be less Es though.

UPDATE 1740z: Still just 6 unique spots on 10m WSPR. Several spots from OZ9QV (864km) - thank you.

Sunspots - Saturday July 29th 2017

Solar flux is 70 today and the sunspot number zero. A=7 and K=1.

UK Pound against the Euro - NOT amateur radio

My prediction was that the UK Pound would appreciate against the Euro later this year. At the moment it is getting weaker!

I am no expert, but still believe that the Euro will weaken. I am definitely not a financial expert and this is more of a hunch than science.

UK Pound against the US Dollar - NOT amateur radio

At the moment the USA seems to have a joke in charge who is even losing the respect of his own party. Personally, I give him 6 months, maybe 12, before his time will be up.

I fail to see how this billionaire is able to be the voice of ordinary US citizens. "Make America great again" is a fine tag line, but making it happen requires the gravitas of office and serious behaviour, not silly tweets.

Meanwhile, the US dollar continues to weaken against the UK Pound.

6m JT65 again

Yet again, I am on 6m JT65. Yesterday brought 3 USA stations in on RX, but it is anyone's guess what today will be like. I started on transceive (1W ERP) but no spots at all so far on 6m JT65.

UPDATE 1452z: In the last few hours there seems to have been an Es opening to Central and Eastern Europe on 6m JT65. As it was quiet, I stayed on beacon mode (1W ERP) sending "B G3XBM JO02" which has been widely spotted.

HAARP news

There are some interesting experiments going on.

See https://sites.google.com/alaska.edu/gakonahaarpoon/operations-news

28 Jul 2017

OFCOM and 3.6-3.8GHz

OFCOM intends to release this spectrum to mobile users and is consulting on this.

See http://ofcom.createsend1.com/t/ViewEmail/i/043A427CF942D7962540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C

Anyone for blackberries? - NOT amateur radio

Our neighbours are on holiday so they said, "help yourselves to the blackberries". I have lost count of the number we have picked, but it is a lot. Our "London" grandchildren ate a lot too.

The picture show those picked today. There are lots still there.

HB100 (10GHz) Facebook page

Quite a few people have been experimenting with very low cost 10GHz units that can be bought for very little on eBay. A few cups of coffee saved and you can buy 10GHz units. In Italy these have been used to work over 200km. Some have used them for 10GHz ATV.

There is a Facebook page on the HB100.

I have to admit to being a "fireside fusilier" in that I'm gunner do this and gunner do that. At some point I'd like to try 10GHz.


Kington Langley Village Hall, Church Road, Kington Langley SN15 5NJ. Talk in on S22 (145.550MHz). There are disabled facilities and on site parking. Doors open 10am to 1pm. Entry is only £2, under 16s are free. Car boot pitches are £6 for cars/vans payable on entry, tables inside £8 each. Access available from 7am for set up. Hot food and drinks are available on site. Details from Brian by email to g6huim3hui@gmail.com www.G3VRE.org.uk

A list of rallies can be found at http://rsgb.org/main/news/rallies/

OFCOM, 26GHz and 5G

OFCOM is consulting about allocating 26GHz spectrum to 5G. They will need a lot of masts! Clearly written by "experts".

See http://ofcom.cmail19.com/t/ViewEmail/i/A4DCDE61BC2736792540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C

Tomatoes - NOT amateur radio

We are definitely not experts in growing tomatoes!

The smaller ones on the right were red ripe today, so these were picked. The larger ones on the left are still green. This picture was taken more than a week ago before they had ripened.

See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tomato

Sprite Satellites

Southgate News has information about the deployment of tiny Sprite satellites that send telemetry on 437.325 MHz.

See http://southgatearc.org/news/2017/july/437-mhz-sprite-satellites-deployed.htm#.WXsE5bpFzIU .

10m WSPR

Yet again, I have been surprised by the Es spots of my 500mW 10m WSPR beacon from all over Europe. Best DX is EW2ABC (1812km). This is very early for Es as it is just 0830z.

UPDATE 1556z: Unless things suddenly change for the better, today will go down as a disappointing day. No Es has been noted here since early this morning on 10m WSPR. Others may well have done better, but only 10 unique stations spotted my 500mW 10m WSPR beacon today whereas yesterday it was more than 40.

UPDATE 1852z: There seems to have been a late teatime Es opening with EW2ABC (1812km) again spotting my 500mW 10m WSPR beacon.

6m JT65

Since breakfast I have been on 6m JT65. Initially I was transceive (1W ERP) but I have switched to RX only. Already spotted Norway and Sweden by Es.

UPDATE 1456z: In the last few minutes I just spotted K4PI (6800km) on 6m JT65. As he was widely spotted in Europe and the USA, I am pretty sure this is genuine. This spot was quickly followed by 2 others in Georgia, USA.

Sunspots - Friday July 28th 2017

Solar flux is 68 today and the sunspot count still zero. A=6 and K=1.

27 Jul 2017

Late Es

In the northern hemisphere the main months are usually May, June and July for Es (sporadic E), although Es can occur at any time, but most openings are missed. With modes like WSPR we really have no excuse: leave WSPR running in the background, say on 10m, and see what spots come in.

Although we are now nearing the end of July, we still have good Es around on 10m and 6m.

Patio flowers - NOT amateur radio

These flowers are on our patio. At the moment there is a riot of colour.

OFCOM on access to 5.8GHz

See http://ofcom.cmail20.com/t/ViewEmail/i/05926F4415CC62812540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C

6m JT65

Things seem to be getting harder on 6m Es. I have spotted a station in the Czech Republic, but no-one else today so far on 6m.

UPDATE 1110z: With just 2 Es spots and 1 G (tropo or aircraft reflection?), this has been a disappointing day on 6m JT65 so far. Up to now I have been transceive (1W ERP), but just about to go RX only on 6m. There was at least 1 EI station who was spotted but not uploaded to the PSK Reporter database. Maybe the shack PC lost internet connectivity?

UPDATE 1120z: Now RX only on 6m JT65.

UPDATE 1525z: Widespread Es on 6m JT65 this afternoon to South and Eastern Europe. Best DX is 4X4DK (3582km).

UPDATE 1836z: Still plenty of Es about on 6m JT65.

UPDATE 1934z: UB7K (2733km) was recently spotted.

Tony's 10m Band Report - a question

Every week Southgate News has Tony's 10m Band Report. Reading this you could be forgiven for thinking 10m is still wonderful. In my experience, things are much harder than a few years ago. Yes there are lots of Europeans by Es, but far less "real" DX outside Europe.

OK, I am confused: I think this is a list of stations reported and not DX heard or worked from the UK.

Well equipped stations will be able to do far better than me, but I need someone to tell me this is a list of reports and not stations heard or worked from the UK. If I am wrong, then some people are doing far better than me!

See http://southgatearc.org/bands/10metres/2017/july/july-27.htm#.WXjyBbpFzIU

Sunspots - Thursday July 27th 2017

Solar flux is 68 today and sunspot number zero.  A=11 and K=1.

Heathkit HW8

Some years ago I owned an HW8 transceiver. It worked very well and I managed several DX contacts. Working stations with a very modest wire antenna was remarkably easy. I know QRP CW is not for everyone, but I was surprised.

In recent years Heathkit is making a comeback. I hope this is successful.

See https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/hf/hw8 .

10m WSPR

Since breakfast, my 10m WSPR TX beacon (500mW) has been on and received 119 spots, mainly in Germany and Denmark. So, plenty of Es on 10m.

UPDATE 1105z:  437 10m WSPR spots so far today. 36 unique spots, which is the best day yet this season and it is only just after noon local time!

UPDATE 1402z: 537 10m WSPR spots so far today. Es has been good on 10m so far. (

UPDATE 1832z: With 40 unique 10m WSPR spots, this is definitely my best day on 10m this season. Best DX is a spot by OE1SJS (1230km).

UPDATE 1935z: Although I am still seeing Eastern Europe on 6m JT65, all has been quiet on 10m WSPR here for an hour.

26 Jul 2017


At about 2115z I went QRT on all bands and disconnected the PC. All Es stopped here over an hour ago. Sometimes it comes back, but there will be other days. It matters not.

Trump's latest - NOT amateur radio

His latest thing (allegedly) is to ban all transgendered people from serving in any capacity in the US military.  One transgendered friend was once Mayor of Cambridge. At work no-one cared about it when this man became a woman. This person had a job to do and that was all that mattered.

See http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-40729996 .

Amateur VLF

Yesterday I had an enquiry about amateur VLF. I referred him to https://sites.google.com/site/sub9khz/ which has lots of data on what I did in the past. There are schematics of the receivers and transmitters I used as well as details from others. Most of my experiments were with "earth mode", although I also received several European amateur VLF stations by radiation. For receive you do not need a large antenna. Even on "earth mode" transmit the power and antenna requirements are quite modest.

Simple pleasures - NOT amateur radio

Well, some blackberries made it to the crumble, but quite a few got eaten! Simple pleasures to be for ever treasured long after the grandchildren have grown and flown. I hope they do this with their children and grandchildren.

Sweet peas - NOT amateur radio

Eventually, the sweet peas in our front garden are coming into flower. We have one white one and two pink ones about to flower. We have planted sweet peas in the front garden and on the patio in the rear garden. The latter have still to flower. Last year we had one set in the front garden but these were nibbled by muntjac deer. Later they flowered well.

10m WSPR

Since before breakfast I have been on 10m WSPR TX (500mW). Already I have been spotted in Germany many times by Es.

UPDATE 1357z: 12 unique spots on 10m WSPR, but all were this morning. Best DX was a spot from Sweden. I assume all these were Es.

UPDATE 1456z: Several Es spots in the last 30 minutes from Germany.

UPDATE 1730z: Best 10m WSPR DX, so far at least, is OE3BUB (1229km).

6m JT65

Until now, since before breakfast, I have been on 6m JT65 transceive (1W ERP), but I have just switched to RX only.

So far, spots have just been G stations either by tropo or aircraft reflection. It is now 0814z.

UPDATE 1402z: 4O6AH (1788km) is the best DX on 6m JT65 RX today so far.

Sunspots - Wednesday July 26th 2017

Solar flux is 70 and the sunspot number 12.  A=9 and K=2.

25 Jul 2017

Parker's Piece, Cambridge, UK - NOT amateur radio

Wild flowers on Parker's Piece, Cambridge, UK. I think these were planted by the pupils at Park Side School.

Parkers Piece was the focus of a big celebration in 1838 to celebrate the coronation of Queen Victoria.

It is also acknowledged as the home of Association Football rules. It is a famous park in Cambridge.

See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parker%27s_Piece

6m JT65

So far this morning I have only spotted G stations on JT65, with no Es yet. I suspect the Gs are by aircraft reflection. At the moment, I am RX only on 6m JT65.

UPDATE 0840z: SM5CEU (1170km) copied by Es.

UPDATE 2115z: More Es earlier from E and SE Europe.


Although I turned on the 500mW beacon about 30 minutes ago, no spots as yet, although it is very early.

UPDATE 0845z: Some early Es on 10m WSPR (see table).

UPDATE 1900z
: Recent Es spots from Denmark and Germany.

UPDATE 2115z: Still getting Es reports from Denmark on 10m WSPR. Es on 10m today seems better than 6m.

Sunspots - Tuesday July 25th 2017

Solar flux is 70 and the sunspot number remains zero. A=12 and K=2.

24 Jul 2017

10m WSPR TX (500mW)

Although I have been on 10m WSPR TX since before breakfast, there have been no spots as yet.

UPDATE 1448z: Quite a decent amount of Es today, mainly Northern Europe.

6m JT65 RX

At the moment I am on 6m JT65 RX. Although there is some Es about, it is nothing like yesterday.

UPDATE 1450z:  So far, the only 6m JT65 spots have been G stations with no Es this afternoon, although  there was some Es this morning.

Rain - NOT amateur radio

We have had grandchildren here since Saturday. Most of the time it has been wet!

Our lawns still have brown patches. They should recover if the heatwave has ended and we get a bit more rain. Already the lawns are improving, but they have a way to go still.

Sunspots - Monday July 24th 2017

Solar flux is 70 today and the sunspot number zero. A=14 and K=3.

23 Jul 2017

QRP and QRP Club

The latest report from Oleg:

Dear Club 72 members and friends,

Weekly QRP Rendez-Vous Report (July, 23, 2017)
First of all, I'd like to thanks a lot my friends who donated for Victor RU3NJC heart trouble operation. God bless you all!
QRP Rendez-Vous e-mail group (reflector) created for all regular visitors. Send request to become the group member to "mr72 (at) club72.su" e-mail, please. All QRPers are welcome to join active QRP group!

ON4ADR, MM0CYR, F5SSI became Honor Frequenters (regular visitors)
New Visitors are welcome -
See full Frequenters and Visitors lists on the Club 72 web page
See  full  version  of  the WQR Report including A LOT of pictures and
comments on the blog - https://qrp-club72.blogspot.ru/
Thanks  all  QRPers  for  activity  and  comments,  see  you  on next

72! Oleg RV3GM / KH6OB "Mr. 72"

This is a periodic Newsletter of the Club 72. Don't reply to Newsletter address! Send any requests or news to mr72@club72.su please.

QRP transceiver kit

This 5W QRP kit has been brought to my attention. I have no idea how easy it is to build. It covers 2-30MHz.

See http://www.m0nka.co.uk/ .

Sunspots - Sunday July 23rd 2017

Solar flux is 69 today and the sunspot number remains zero. A=16 and K=3.

10m WSPR TX - good Es

My 500mW 10m WSPR beacon has been on all morning. With lots of spots from across Europe this is another good Es day.

6m JT65

There has been plenty of European Es on 6m this morning. At one point I got excited about a USA spot, but as I was the only one to spot him, I assume this was a false decode sadly.

22 Jul 2017

High numbers, even without the hackers from Eastern Europe - NOT amateur radio

Visits to this blog are already well up today, and this is without our "friends" in Eastern Europe doing their regular probe. I have no idea why.

Sunflowers out - NOT amateur radio

This morning I noticed that our sunflowers were out. In the accompanying photo you can hardly see them! "Our" windmill is in the background and the red berries on one of our rowan trees are visible on the left. The sunflowers are just visible (if you look hard!) towards the right.

Trump - NOT amateur radio

So Donald has now been in office for 6 months. In an electoral system such as that in the USA you get the person voted for by most. What amazed me was that so many voted for him. Let history be his judge.

Storms coming?

A quick look at the lightning map shows that storms are still some way away. I have decided to leave my 10m WSPR and 6m JT65 systems connected, but will review this later.

UPDATE 1300z: At the moment the local weather forecast shows no storms are likely here.

Hamsphere Virtual Amateur Radio

Already, I have posted that I prefer "the real thing" to virtual amateur radio.

As conditions worsen I expect more people will turn to systems like Hamsphere. Earlier this week I got an email offering Hamsphere membership for 15 Euros for returning users. This is quite tempting.

See http://www.hamsphere.com/ .

Grandchildren coming later, so less amateur radio

Our "London" grandchildren arrive after lunch. It means that amateur radio takes a back seat for a few days, although I can still go on 10m WSPR and 6m JT65 RX or beacon mode. My usual Monday night sked on 2m FM is out as one of them sleeps in the bedroom near my shack.

Sunspots - Saturday July 22nd 2017

Solar flux is 69 today and the sunspot number still zero. A=14 and K=2. Luckily there is good Es in Europe.

6m JT65

As it was busy with Es from all across Europe, I decided to stay RX only on 6m JT65 for now. Already I have spotted stations from all over Europe by Es. At the moment, this is the best day this year for 6m Es. At the moment I have not spotted any stations beyond Europe on 6m.

UPDATE 0924z:  XT3TCD (4423km) in West Africa has been spotted. This station has been spotted by others so is not a false decode. Of course, it could be a pirate! It is possible by Es.

10m WSPR TX - early Es

As usual , I turned on my 10m WSPR beacon (500mW) just before breakfast. It is now only 0845z and already I have had 10 unique reports, mostly Es. This is very early.

UPDATE 1108z: The photo shows the spots received for my 500mW 10m WSPR beacon so far today.

UPDATE 1357z: Been spotted again by SP9LJE (1261km). On all his reports (not others) the drift is bad.  I presume this must be his end.

21 Jul 2017

Blackberries - NOT amateur radio

No, not the personal organisers, I'm talking about fruit.

There is a wild blackberry bush just outside our garden. When they come to stay these next few days, our "London" grandchildren will really enjoy picking the ripe ones and eating them. These are wild fruits and they taste delicious.

"Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness" - well almost!

Swifts - NOT amateur radio

This morning I saw no swifts. Usually in August you just realise they are not there any more. Screaming swifts in the skies are part of a UK summer. It saddens me when they go, but they will be back next year.

See https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/bird-and-wildlife-guides/bird-a-z/s/swift/

UPDATE 1530z: Spotted a few swifts lunchtime.

Rally on Sunday

The Hurst Communications Centre, Belton Road, Sandtoft, Doncaster DN8 5SX. Doors open 10:30am. Free parking. Massive indoor /outdoor trader's area. Hot food and drinks all day. Major traders and club stalls - microwave components to QRP kits. All on one level. Admission £3. Contact Kevin G3AAF Mob: 07831 614640 - email Kevin@avery03.fsnet.co.uk

A list of rallies can be found at http://rsgb.org/main/news/rallies/


Although I am beaconing (500mW) TX on 10m WSPR, nothing reported today so far.

UPDATE 1130z: No spots still.

UPDATE 1838z: Well it was a long time coming but SP9LJE (1261km) has spotted my 500mW 10m WSPR beacon a few times this evening.

6m JT65 RX

I stayed on 6m JT65 overnight. In the last 12 hours just Gs and near continent, possibly by aircraft reflection or tropo. No Es seen here yet on 6m.

UPDATE 0930z: Another station in Puerto Rico was spotted here late last evening. WP4G (6800km) was spotted on 6m JT65. So, a couple of Caribbean stations spotted.

UPDATE 1112z: I keep getting what I assume are false decodes which appear as a station in Algeria in the middle of the Sahara Desert!  As he was spotted by no-one else, I am ignoring these.

UPDATE 1840z: As it seemed very quiet I went on 6m JT65 TX (1W ERP) and was spotted in Southern Europe. There is (at last) some Es on 6m here.

Stroke update - NOT amateur radio

Some are interested to know how I am progressing since my stroke in September 2013.

Well, things are much the same: I still feel very tired (no, exhausted) after quite brief physical or mental exertion - normally this is after about 15-20 minutes. My voice is poor.

I am able to drive, but I estimate it is now about 5 times harder. I also drive slower as 50mph seems like 70 mph. It is as if my brain takes longer to process things. Also, subtitles seem to change too fast and I find it hard to keep up.

Although most foods are fine, I take an age with drinks, especially tea and coffee. For some reason cold drinks are easier.

Daft things are I find spelling harder, my writing is poor now and I feel tired much of the time. I think I get more anxious too.

Outwardly, I look "well". Others do not realise that life is a real struggle most of the time.

Overall, I find it hard to see improvements now. In most ways I feel like I did a year ago.

See https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/stroke

Sunspots - Friday July 21st 2017

Solar flux is 69 and the sunspot number is again zero. A=7 and K=3.

Luckily, Es is livening up the higher HF bands although I find WSPR activity disappointing.

20 Jul 2017

10m WSPR

As usual, I have been on 10m WSPR TX (500mW) since breakfast. Es has been good with widespread reports from around Europe.

UPDATE 1458z: SM5ISM (1288km) remains my best DX on 10m WSPR TX today.

UPDATE 1640z: DJ9PC/1 (825km) has received me at an astounding +7dB S/N. Es! Assuming a low noise floor, uW power levels would be enough.

UPDATE 2126z:  22 unique stations spotted on 10m WSPR today.

Summer colour - NOT amateur radio

A few weeks ago our lawns were green. Then the sun really shone and patches turned brown. Slowly they are recovering.

By mistake, we bought impatiens for our front garden instead of begonias. Luckily they have been a good splash of colour.

Our sweet peas look healthy, but we have yet to see a single flower. My brother down in Devon has also had a disappointing sweet pea show this year. We both bought these as plugs from a well respected seed supplier.

6m JT65

Since breakfast I have been on 6m JT65. At first I was transceive but for the last hour or so I have been RX only. Plenty of 6m Es.

UPDATE 1332z: Most of the 6m spots have been Southern and Eastern Europe, presumably by Es.

UPDATE 1638z: UT8IO (2720km) in Ukraine is the best DX today so far.

UPDATE 2138z: KP4EIT (6830km) in the Caribbean has just been spotted on 6m JT65.

Sunspots - Thursday July 20th 2017

Solar flux is 72 today and the sunspots number is again zero. A=4 and K=2.

19 Jul 2017

QRT and disconnected

As I had received no new reports on 10m WSPR TX for nearly 2 hours and 6m JT65 looks like the best DX on RX was the Azores and Canary Is, I decided to go QRT. 

No storms are forecast here but you never know. I should be back on tomorrow at breakfast time.

I noticed that ONs were calling KP4 earlier on 6m JT65, so there was some real DX around.

BBC salaries - NOT amateur radio

The BBC was made to disclose (by the government) the salaries of their top stars and presenters. Quite a few earn more than £500k a year and some over £2M a year! Sorry, but I think this is insane and immoral: I am sure there are people who could do as good a job on much lower salaries.  BBC? Big Bangs Corporation or Big Bonkers Corporation.

Remember we pay for these people with our licence fees. Shame!

Crab Apples - NOT amateur radio

Last year we had a very poor crop, but this year our crab apple tree is full (on the left)! Someone said that every other year will be good with a poor season in between. This may be an "old wives tale", but it does seem to fit. A friend of my wife makes crab-apple jelly and she gives us a jar. She will not be short this year.

Solar conditions - improving?

On average, solar conditions have improved these last few months. In the longer term, we are definitely on the slide towards the next minimum, but there will always be days when things are far better than average.

Of course, there is no correlation between solar activity and Es (as far as I know). Certainly some great Es has been seen in periods of low sunspot activity. 10m, 6m and even 4m and 2m can suddenly spring into life with some quite remarkable signals. DX out to several thousand kilometres is not unheard of by Es on 10m and 6m.

In my experience just a few watts and simple antennas are all that are needed to work all over Europe on 10m and 6m from the UK in the Es season. As Es can occur (less often) at any time of year it is worth beaconing on 10m and 6m with WSPR or JT65 in the quieter months as people often just give up.

See http://www.solen.info/solar/ .

10m WSPR

Today has been very fruitful on 10m WSPR with plenty of spots by Es of my 500mW beacon. OZ9QV (864km) has spotted me many times. All spots have been by Europeans by Es I think.

UPDATE 1522z: In past seasons I seem to recall more Es from Northern Europe later in the season. This may be incorrect, but perhaps the things that trigger Es are more common in Northern Europe later in the summer?

Pound to Euro exchange rate - NOT amateur radio

Some time ago I predicted that the UK Pound would strengthen against the Euro before then end of the year. At the moment it is weaker. Only time will tell.

My assumption was the Euro still has problems especially with Greece and fewer "rich" contributors once the UK leaves the EU. As I said before, I am no financial expert and may be totally wrong.

Most of the burden will be on France and Germany, both of whom want the EU to succeed. If Greece defaults Germany will be most hurt.

6m JT65 - now RX only

For a while now, I have been on 6m JT65 but RX only. Earlier, I was also on TX and reached Austria and the UK.

Sunspots - Wednesday July 19th 2017

Solar flux is 78 today (down) and the sunspot number has returned to zero again. A=7 and K=1.

Storms over - for now

We had thunder, lightning and rain overnight, so I do hope my brown patched lawn starts to improve! I turned on 10m WSPR TX (500mW) and 6m JT65 at breakfast time. There seems to be plenty of Es to Eastern Europe on 6m. Plenty of early Es spots of my little beacon on 10m WSPR too (Italy and Germany).

18 Jul 2017

Storms coming

Looking at the weather, it seems likely we'll have thunder and lightning later, so everything will be turned off and disconnected later this evening. I am resisting as conditions on both 10m and 6m are so good currently.

See https://www.lightningmaps.org/blitzortung/europe/index.php?lang=en .

UPDATE 1937z: Most of the storms are still SW of London, so I think I'll leave things connected until dark. Most or all of the 10m WSPR spots stopped an hour ago here.

UPDATE 2015z: The storms are now reaching London. I reckon they will reach here in about 2-3 hours.

UPDATE 2125z: QRT and everything disconnected.

Spectrum Pollution

Southgate News reports on Don Beattie's speech at Friedrichshafen in which he drew attention to the extreme pressures of noise pollution (getting worse) in many areas. It is no use having spectrum allocated to the Amateur Radio service if the spectrum is unusable.

See http://iaru-r1.org/images/PR_Communications/FHN-opening-address---G3BJ.pdf

Electric cars: the future? - NOT amateur radio

I like the idea of electric cars. Less pollution, economic, quiet. However, I am still concerned about range between charges.

Some models now claim ranges of up to 300 miles. I wonder if this is like mpg claimed figures which rarely match "real world" conditions. I expect these figures are in summer, new battery, no lights on, no air-conditioning, just a driver, no luggage. I also expect replacement batteries will be very expensive.

Unless there is a major breakthrough in battery technology that comfortably does 300 miles in real world driving, I do not think electric cars will really take off.

For some time I have wondered if the answer might be smaller batteries and power charging from a buried cable in main roads. The battery would only be used "on its own" on minor roads.

There is lots of research into batteries and lots of money invested.

QRP and QRP Club

More from Oleg:


Until I saw a posting on the Southgate News page I had never heard of this organisation. I had to resort to Google to find out who they were! Apparently there is a meeting with the IARU late this year.

See http://www.eurao.org/en/welcome

10m WSPR TX - early spots

My little 10m WSPR beacon (500mW) is being widely spotted around Europe by Es this morning. It looks like today is going to be a good day both on 10m and 6m.

With good Es so early I am wondering if 4m or even 2m will be open for Es?

6m JT65

Quite a bit of Es this morning on 6m. This is early, so bodes well for the day. 2 hours ago I was briefly on 6m JT65 TX and was copied in southern Europe. Most of the time I am RX only on 6m JT65.

UPDATE 0904z: Best DX on RX (ignoring my pirate supposedly in "Indonesia") is UN6T (5211km) in Kazakhstan. I am pretty sure this is genuine as he was widely spotted in Western Europe and the Middle East.

UPDATE 1734z:  I was out this afternoon, so went QRT and disconnected the rigs and antennas in case there were storms. These now look unlikely until later, so everything is on again (10m WSPR TX and 6m JT65 RX). There seems to be a lot of Es about.

Sunspots - Tuesday July 18th 2017

Solar flux is 84 today (still quite respectable) and the sunspot number 13 (down). A=27 and K=3.

17 Jul 2017

QRT on all bands

At about 2122z I went QRT on all bands and turned off the PC. Storms permitting, I intend to be back on around breakfast time tomorrow. I shall probably be active again on 10m WSPR TX (500mW) and 6m JT65 (mostly RX, but occasional TX with 1W ERP).

Puerto Rico on 6m JT65

A few hours ago KP4EIT (6830km) was spotted here and by a few others in the UK and Europe. I am pretty sure this was genuine. Otherwise it has been a very quiet day on 6m JT65 with just one station in Sweden spotted this morning. The Caribbean station was spotted calling CQ just once.

Baking - NOT amateur radio

Last night our "Kent" son and grandchildren came to stay briefly before they go off to Australia to see their relatives on my daughter-in-law's side. This is one of my granddaughters busy baking.

10m WSPR TX and 6m JT65 RX

Apart from a spot on 10m WSPR in the middle of the night, no evidence of Es today on either 10m or 6m. Yet more evidence of a UK pirate or false decode on 6m JT65 as I was (yet again) supposed to have received an Indonesian station on 6m.

Sunspots - July 17th 2017

Solar flux is 86 today. Sunspot number is 26.  A=41 and K=4.

QRP and QRP Club

From Oleg:

Dear Club 72 members and friends,

Weekly QRP Rendez-Vous Report (July, 16, 2017)
Independently of poor condition we keep activity over QRP Rendez-Vous
periods. Actually, we have 5 new "rendezvous" visitors and two regular
visitors  became  our  Honor  Frequenters  this  week. I only ask all
visitors  try to invite other QRPers to connect to "rendezvous" round
If you'd like to get the "72 Newsletter" regularly or become a member
of  the  "QRP  Rendez-Vous" discussion group (reflector) ask RV3GM by
e-mail - mr72(at) club72.su - please

Visitors  of  the  week:  UA1CEG,  ON6KZ, RK8W, G3XJS, OH6NPV, OM6TC,

PA0PJE and HA2PP became Honor Frequenters
New Visitors - RK8W, DL9LO, EA1TG, F5OYV, F5DM
See  full  Visitors  and  Frequenters  lists  on  the  Club 72 page -
www.club72.su Some comments...
see full version of the WQR Report including all comments on the blog
page - https://qrp-club72.blogspot.ru/ Thanks  all  for  activity and comments! See you on next "rendezvous"
round tables.

72! Oleg RV3GM / KH6OB "Mr. 72"

This is a periodic Newsletter of the Club 72. Don't reply to Newsletter address! Send any requests or news to mr72@club72.su please.

Regen RX PCB

Yesterday, I received this email. I had no idea that Andy had made a PCB of my little regen RX.

"Hi Roger,

I saw your blog post a couple of days ago which reminded me that I had produced a little PCB of your design to test it out.

It works very well for the small number of parts used. The tuning was quite broad with the polyvaricon used but I was still able to resolve cw fairly easily down on the 40m band.

I am quite sure I still have one or two of the unpopulated PCBs knocking around in the shack should anyone want to try and build this regen.

These single evening projects that result in a useful working radio really give 100pct enjoyment factor.

Keep those designs coming !

De Andy"

WSPR - how QRP can you go?

It is well known that some people use low milliwatts or even microwatts with WSPR. My antenna is not the best on 10m, but certainly with Es I could run low milliwatts or even microwatts and be copied at good ranges when the band is open. Some of yesterday's reports were plus dB S/N even with 500mW, implying there is 20-30dB in hand.

OFCOM statement about local mobile communications on ships

OFCOM as released a statement about localised mobile communications on ships.

See http://ofcom.createsend1.com/t/ViewEmail/i/451A88C0BEE0D1772540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C

16 Jul 2017

FT8 digital mode

This new digital mode is available in a beta release of WSJT-X. Although keen to give this new mode a try, I think I'll wait until it is formally released, although I am told it is already being widely used on 20m.

Western Backway - NOT amateur radio

Kingsbridge, Devon has very old pedestrian walkways that go around the town. This is Western Backway that also has a mill leet, although the mill closed long ago. Not many visitors are aware of these.

Sunspots - Sunday July 16th 2017

Solar flux is 90 today (high) and the sunspot number 34. A=4 and K=4.


Since before breakfast, I have been on 10m WSPR TX (500mW), although no spots received yet.

UPDATE 2022z: 10 unique spots of my 500mW today on 10m WSPR.

6m JT65

I was briefly on RX and TX, but I am now just on RX. Plenty of EU Es in evidence with stations in southern Europe being copied.

Last night briefly I was also JT65 TX (1W ERP) and was copied in southern Spain and the UK.

15 Jul 2017

Back on the air

This time, I decided not to take any radios to Devon. I did last year, but hardly used them because of my poor voice.

On my return home I have been active on 10m WSPR TX (no spots) and 6m JT65 where I copied a few stations in southern Portugal and Spain, but no-one copied my 1W ERP.

Model Village - NOT amateur radio

On our way home, we called at Bourton in the Water to visit the model village. It was worth a look.

See http://www.bourtoninfo.com/tourist-attractions/the-model-village/ .

Sunspots - Saturday July 15th 2017

Solar flux is 91 (high) and the sunspot number 58 (quite high). A=4 and K=1. At this stage of the solar cycle these are good numbers.

Home again - NOT amateur radio

After nine days away from home (7 in Devon and 2 stopping on the way) we are now back home again. The grass needs cutting and those annoying brown patches in the grass, although smaller, are still there! Obviously we did not have enough rain.

OFCOM annual report and accounts

The annual report and accounts for 2016/17 is now available from OFCOM.

See http://ofcom.cmail19.com/t/ViewEmail/i/F38DFBC79600293C2540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C

14 Jul 2017

A dead simple regen receiver

There are plenty of designs out there (try Googling "regen"). but I offer you this simple design with very few parts. It works. You may be surprised that something so simple can hear so much.

See https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/hf/regen .

Sunspots - Friday July 14th 2017

Solar flux is 91 today and the sunspot number is 55. A=4 and K=1.

13 Jul 2017

The 2m Fredbox

This was designed in 1974, when I was still "green behind the ears". It got rebuilt much later and still worked well.

The Sixbox came much later.

See https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/vuhf/fredbox .

Rethink over climate deal? - NOT amateur radio

Is Donald having second thoughts over climate change? I certainly hope so. On this the USA is at odds with the entire world and that can't be good for one's ego. He sounds and behaves stupidly in the eyes of the rest of the world. Come on Donald! You'll look better (more presidential) if you come into line.

See http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-40597244 .

Sixbox 6m AM QRP transceiver

As we slowly progress to "quiet sun" years, it is worth remembering that our VHF bands are useful for local QSOs. Some years ago I designed and built the Sixbox which was a very simple AM transceiver for 6m local communications. It should be easy to build and develop further - maybe with more power and a loudspeaker amp added. I am pretty sure this has been shown before.

See https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/vuhf/sixbox

Groundsman's hut - NOT amateur radio

Bolt Tail in the distance. This groundsman's hut at Thurlestone Golf Club is being rebuilt. It was a corrugated shed. I expect the next time I see it, it will be completed!  The second view is a typical Devon scene with Burgh Island in the distance.

OFCOM and 5.8GHz Wi-Fi

OFCOM has made a decision regarding 5.8GHz Wi-Fi in the UK. This now legally increases the number of 80MHz Wi-Fi channels from 4 to 6 in the UK. Their hope is the extra spectrum will help broadband.

See http://ofcom.cmail20.com/t/ViewEmail/i/380368699EAB7D432540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C

Virtual Amateur Radio? - NOT yet

On the Southgate News page is a link to a French blog extolling the virtues of virtual ham radio such as HamSphere. These use the internet rather than the ionosphere, so it is not real radio, just a simulation. You can still communicate world-wide, exchange QSL cards etc..

At the moment this not for me: I prefer the challenge of real radio and have moved over to JT65, WSPR etc. to still catch 10m and 6m DX. It is definitely getting harder and I might turn to virtual ham radio for some QSOs in the quiet years ahead.

See http://southgatearc.org/news/2017/july/10-reasons-to-go-to-virtual-amateur-radio.htm#.WWcvIbpFzIU

See also: https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/virtual/hamsphere

Sunspots - Thursday July 13th 2017

Solar flux is 90 today (high) and the sunspot number 43 (high for this part of the sunspot cycle). A=4 and K=1.

12 Jul 2017

How simple can you make a rig?

This is a question I asked myself a few years ago. Here I am talking about a complete transceiver. Inspired by a design from W2UW, I designed and built the FETer transceiver for 80m CW. It worked remarkably well.

See https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/hf/feter-80m-qrpp-cw-transceiver

Friedrichshafen this weekend

Messe, Friedrichshafen, Germany Trade stands, special interest groups and IARU Member Societies all have stands in the main hall. Large flea market. Lectures take place each day, some in English. There will be a large RSGB book stall. www.hamradio-friedrichshafen.de.

A list of rallies can be found at http://rsgb.org/main/news/rallies/

This probably the biggest gathering in Europe. It is the European Dayton.

Better weather - NOT amateur radio

Yesterday it rained heavily. Today couldn't be more different: blue skies, sunshine and warmth. We are off to one of our favourite National Trust places - Coleton Fishacre near Brixham.

See https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/coleton-fishacre .

Sunspots -Wednesday July 12th 2017

Solar flux is 91 today and the sunspot number 27. A=8 and K=1.

11 Jul 2017

PC language - NOT amateur radio

So an MP has been suspended for using a word that is no longer politically correct. All I can say is, "what is this world coming to?". Clearly she just said the words in error and deeply regretted this.  People are not allowed to play conkers in case they hurt themselves. Yet, we can house people in dangerous tower blocks.

Sorry, but I think we are becoming stupid. We should worry about real issues.

By the way I well remember a 4 hour training course at work on lifting heavy boxes. For the previous 38 years I had managed to lift heavy test gear without training. Oh, in the last minute of the training I got to lift a box! The course was more about my manager being seen to have given the training than really making things safer.

All I can say is rubbish!

Cattle Egrets - NOT amateur radio

These birds are getting more common in the UK. They have yellow beaks unlike little egrets that have black beaks.

This is probably due to climate change. Another 20 years and they will probably be common.

At the moment there are cattle egrets 2 miles from where we are staying in Devon, although I have not seen them. Well, I may have, but the one I saw was too far away to ID positively, although it was very close to a cow.

See https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/bird-and-wildlife-guides/bird-a-z/c/cattleegret/ .

History of the BBC

It is hard to think that the BBC has been going for almost 100 years. It started in 1922. I hope it manages to be independent of government interference in the years ahead.

Around the world it has gained a reputation for honesty. So, governments of all flavours keep out!

Just imagine the celebrations in 2022!

See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_the_BBC .

Cellphone power harvesting

Southgate News reports on a cellphone design that uses power harvesting to minimise power consumption. I suspect this is a "proof of concept" project rather than a practical design. Clearly, it requires a major name to introduce power harvesting to minimise power usage. Most cellphones use milliwatts or even watts of power on TX.

See http://southgatearc.org/news/2017/july/battery-free-cellphone.htm#.WWT3UrpFxMs

No coastal walk tonight! - NOT amateur radio

As it is still raining heavily, I think we'll give our after-dinner coastal walk a miss this evening. I suspect watching TV is more probable.

UPDATE 2020z: The rain stopped so I managed to walk out to the cliffs and back. With breakers crashing on the beach, it was a very different kind of evening.

Seats - NOT amateur radio

When my dad retired, he got a job with the National Trust running a job creation scheme maintaining the coast paths near where he lived in South Devon. When he died (1987) they put up 2 seats in his honour. They are still well used today! On each there is a small plaque which I expect few read. Nonetheless, it is a fitting memorial for all his hard work. He loved this area in the South Hams of Devon and so do I.

More OFCOM stuff

OFCOM is auctioning microwave spectrum. After all, all they (allegedly) seem to be interested in is money.

Amateur radio? What is that then?

See http://ofcom.cmail19.com/t/ViewEmail/i/ED1113E2A6F4FFBB2540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C

Looking west - NOT amateur radio

This is a view looking west from the coastal path in South Devon looking towards Cornwall in the evening. It threatened rain which didn't come. Today we are expecting lots of rain. Mind you, this is Devon "where it rains 6 days out of 7". This is how I remember it! So far, we have been lucky with good weather every day. Today was the exception with heavy rain all day. The rest of the week looks better.

Sunspots - Tuesday July 11th 2017

Solar flux is 92 today (decent). Sunspot number is 32 (respectable for this part of the cycle).  A=9 and K=3.

70cm UKAC activity contest

Being the second Tuesday in the month tonight is the 70cm activity contest starting at 1900z and lasting for 2.5 hours. Unfortunately I am unable to enter this month.

UPDATE 1635z: With lots of rain, I suspect the number of 70cm /P stations will be down this evening.

10 Jul 2017

Post Office Travel Card - NOT amateur radio

The UK Post Office offers a prepay travel card which appears quite good. As my old card expired last month and I changed my address, they promised to send me a new card, credited with the money left on the old card. No card arrived and I got an email saying they were experiencing very high loads and apologies. Today I got an email asking me to call their customer services number. All I can say is CRAP!! To say I am annoyed is an understatement.

Sunspots - Monday July 10th 2017

Solar flux is 91 today (good) and the sunspot number 31 (respectable). A=28 and K=4.

Gone away? - NOT amateur radio

For the first time in a week, a certain eastern European country seems to have lost interest in this blog and gone away. There are visits from there, but I suspect these are real people rather than trawling bots.

9 Jul 2017

Devon - NOT amateur radio

I am spending a week in South Devon, were I was brought up. The coast is stunningly beautiful. The weather has been good so far, so a coastal path walk each evening has been possible. I know I posted a very similar view a few days ago, but thought readers might enjoy it again too. Where we are staying is just a short walk from this point.

Pixie CW QRP transceiver

Some time ago I bought a Pixie kit from China. It was really bought to test my building skills since my stroke. In years past this would have been trivial. The kit was so low cost that even if it had to be thrown away it would not matter.

As it turned out, it worked first time. A QSO with a local a few miles away proved all was well. The crystal supplied was 7023kHz, but a very kind person sent me a 7030kHz crystal, which is the 40m QRP CW frequency.

I see from Southgate News that the Banbury Club is running a Pixie Challenge.

See http://www.banburyares.co.uk/Documents/Pixie.pdf

QRP and QRP Club

Another weekly report for Oleg:

Dear Club 72 members and friends,

Weekly QRP Rendez-Vous Report (July, 9, 2017)
News! News! N
Special "rendezvous" discussion group (reflector) created for all QRP
Rendez-Vous round tables visitors. To connect this group send request
to - mr72@club72.su - including your name, call, e-mail, please.

Visitors  of the week: UA1CEG, RV3GM, US5ERQ, RA1M/mm, RU3NJC, UR0ET,
Welcome new Visitors
See full Visitors and Frequenters lists on the Club 72 web page
... see full version of the WQR Report including a lot of comments and
pictures here - https://qrp-club72.blogspot.ru/
Thanks all for comments and activity!
See you on next QRP Rendez-Vous!

72! Oleg RV3GM / KH6OB "Mr. 72"

This is a periodic Newsletter of the Club 72. Don't reply to Newsletter address! Send any requests or news to mr72@club72.su please.

Sunspots - Sunday July 9th 2017

Solar flux is 87 today. The sunspot number is 24. A=3 and K=2.

QRP DXing from the great outdoors

Here in the UK we have enjoyed some great summer weather. Maybe it is time to try your QRP SSB rig out portable. During the summer Es season some stations can be worked with a very modest QRP portable station: no big antennas, just a whip on the rig can be enough. I find a counterpoise can make a lot of difference. Always be mindful of "humans" who may not understand. 😉

F2 DX on the higher HF bands is getting harder, but Es is a different matter.

See https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/hf/pedestrian .

8 Jul 2017

Cornish rally this Sunday

Penair School, Truro, Cornwall TR1 1TN Car parking is available on site. Doors open 10.30am and admission £2 There will be traders, Bring & Buy and club stalls. Catering is available. Contact Ken, G0FIC 01209 821 073 for more information.

A list of rallies can be found at http://rsgb.org/main/news/rallies/

2m SSB

Certainly here in the UK, 2m SSB is far less active than 30 years ago. Even FM can be quiet. Apart from contests and big lifts 2m can be very quiet. It was very different back then. I had (and still have) an MX2 2m SSB 200mW handheld. Back in its day it worked some impressive DX handheld.

See https://sites.google.com/site/g3xbmqrp3/vuhf/mx2 .

Beetles - NOT amateur radio

Saw these last night on a walk. At first I thought they were feeding or collecting nectar, but I think they were mating.

See http://www.uksafari.com/soldierbeetles.htm .
Apparently their nickname is "bonking beetles". 😉

Sunspots - Saturday July 8th 2017

Solar flux is 81 today and the sunspot number 25. A=5 and K=1.

There is a large sunspot growing. See http://spaceweather.com/ .

7 Jul 2017

Home - NOT amateur radio

My family has been in this area for centuries. It s humbling to think my ancestors looked on much the same view in the reign of Henry VI in the 1400s.

Sunspots - Friday July 7th 2017

Solar flux is 80 today and the sunspot number 11. A=7 and K=1.


They have issued a statement about commercial multi-user gateways. Don't get too excited: it is not good for your heart!

See http://ofcom.cmail19.com/t/ViewEmail/i/A7E73F6AB9A1B7EB2540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C

6 Jul 2017

Thunder - QRT!

There is some thunder about, so I have gone QRT and disconnected everything.

See https://www.lightningmaps.org/?lang=en#m=sat;r=0;t=3;s=0;o=0;b=;n=0;y=53.9231;x=-12.5879;z=5;d=2;dl=2;dc=0;

Rallies this weekend

8 JULY 2017 : LAMFEST in aid of the Yorkshire Air Ambulance
Elsecar Heritage Centre, Wath Road, Elsecar, Barnsley S74 8HJ Doors open from 10am to 4.30pm and admission is £2. Tables are free. Contact Clair Marsh on 226 361 700.

Walthew House, 112 Shaw Heath, Stockport, Cheshire SK2 6QS Doors open from 10am to 3pm. Admission is £2 and there will be catering on site. There will be trade stands, special interest groups and an RSGB bookstall. There will be a raffle held on the day. Contact: Heather Stanley, M6HNS on 07506 904 422 or by email to info@g8srs.co.uk

8/9 JULY 2017 : 2017 uWAVE ROUND TABLE
Finningley ARS, The Hurst Communications Centre, Belton Road, Sandtoft, Doncaster DN8 5SX A 2 day event with presentations, demos, test lab, and buildathon of a nanowave optical transceiver. Updates are on www.g0ghk.com and www.facebook.com/g0ghk

And STILL they wait....zzzzz

In the USA the FCC has still not released 137 and 472kHz to radio amateurs!! Frankly this is almost unbelievable. The FCC seems so unbelievably S L O W. At this rate many potential users will be dead i.e. those over 30 years old before these bands are released.😟 

I suspect most at the FCC know absolutely nothing about radio. This is demonstrable by the time taken to make radio related decisions. Come on FCC - get a grip!!!

I am losing all faith in the USA. First you elect Donald, seen by many in the world as a bad joke, and your main radio regulator appears useless to many of us in the rest of the world.

See http://www.arrl.org/news/band-plan-proposed-for-eventual-472-479-khz-use .

Sunspots - Thursday July 6th 2017

Solar flux is 73 today and the sunspot number 11. A=3 and K=1.


Although I have been on 10m WSPR TX (500mW) since before breakfast, no spots so far.

Yesterday on 10m WSPR I was spotted 117 times by 12 unique stations, all Es around Europe.

UPDATE 1140z: Before going QRT about 30 minutes ago (storms) I had been spotted by no-one all day! Still thundering.

6m JT65 RX

At present, I am on 6m JT65 receive only. Best DX is Morocco. Storm risk may cause me to go QRT later.

5 Jul 2017

Less 6m JT65 "beaconing"

As I have had a few comments about my 6m JT65 "beaconing" mode, I have decided to RX more and "beacon" less.  During the Es season, when just 1W ERP can span a very long way, occupying a JT65 channel (around 150Hz wide) can be seen as anti-social. When the band is quiet, I think sending "B G3XBM JO02" is fair, especially if well away from 50.286MHz but still within the JT65 window. PSK Reporter Maps show where my signal is being received.

For now, I shall continue with 10m WSPR TX (500mW) as this takes up far less bandwidth and the TX frequency is randomised within the 200Hz WSPR window.

Spotting pirates and false decodes on 6m JT65

When you are supposed to have received an exotic DX call on 6m JT65 it is worth looking to see who else copied the call and in what area. Some of the calls supposedly were seen only by me, suggesting false decodes. When several others spot the same DX call it is often a pirate nowhere near where the DX is supposed to be.

Some really long 6m JT65 DX is genuine: for example the 13 (thirteen) Japanese stations spotted a few weeks ago were genuine, but one has to be careful. Some exotic calls are actually pirates just down the road.

UK 60m band(s)

At present in the UK, we have a number of secondary bandlets at 60m, but not the WRC 15kHz wide allocation. Our primary user is the military who seem to be in no hurry to change things.

Purely personally, I'd like to see the WRC allocation available in the UK as I find multiple bandlets very confusing. I know we have more power and plenty of choice, but I am a QRPer and having a common allocation would be better in my personal view. I fully accept my views may not be widely accepted.

In the quiet years ahead the 60m band will become more and more important. I have said many times before, it would be good if CEPT countries allocated a wider 60m band. I think we are happy to be secondary users.

Sunspots - Wednesday July 5th 2017

Solar flux is 72 but the sunspot number zero again. A=4 and K=1.  Es on 6m, but nothing seen as yet on 10m WSPR, although I think this is my antenna largely.

6m JT65

I have been on 6m JT65 transceive (1W ERP) since before breakfast. Plenty of European Es spots.

10m WSPR

Since before breakfast, I have been on 10m WSPR TX (500mW). Although I have spotted Finnish stations on 6m JT65, there are no reports as yet of my 10m WSPR. As I have said before, my antenna is probably poorer on 10m, but also I think the 2 minute TX time causes some spots to be missed. It would be good to have a version of WSPR with 1 minute periods WSPR1? This would be an ideal mode for Es when signals can be strong but openings brief.

UPDATE 1728z:  9 unique spots of my 500mW 10m WSPR so far - all Europeans by Es. So far, just Denmark and Germany on 10m WSPR.

4 Jul 2017

2m UKAC activity contest - July

Luckily I had an email reminding me of the 2m activity contest (UKAC) this evening. Best DX was the Isle of Wight at 213km. Not bad with 5W and an omni antenna in 45 minutes.

More from OFCOM

The latest news from OFCOM.

See http://ofcom.cmail19.com/t/ViewEmail/i/92C41206C0E3975D2540EF23F30FEDED/59D1BD3EA2F08127C67FD2F38AC4859C