A late decision to enter the winter VHF/UHF contest saw Nick VK2FS and Greg VK2XE set up a station close to the Pony Club near to the club’s repeaters. Beautiful weather allowed for a smooth set up with a dipole at around 7m up a squid pole for 50MHz and a 6m mast with yagis for 144MHz, 432MHz and 1296MHz. The dipole for 6m arrived on site as a dipole for a somewhat lower frequency however following some calculations on the fly and the application of wire cutters, it was persuaded to resonate close to 50MHz. Separate radios were set up for each band with an IC-7300 used on 6m, an IC-7000 on 2m, another IC-7000 for 70cm and an FT-817 running on 144MHz driving a Kuhne transverter for 1296MHz.
Radio conditions weren’t too good and/or there was not too much contest activity and so it was a bit slow going at times. This was not assisted by some other stations appearing to have forgotten to turn on their receivers! We worked stations on 50MHz, 144 MHz and 432MHz. Unfortunately stations on 1296MHz were elusive although the Dural beacon was a good signal. Chris VK2HX even rushed home to try 1296MHz without success. We did have some excitement when the PTT on the IC-7000 being used for 70cm suddenly decided it didn’t want to work however it was persuaded back to life after being taken apart.
Visitors from the club included Charlie, Rob, Shaun and Chris with the latter bearing gifts of hot drinks for the operators. Greg’s son Declan also attended. In addition, we had the opportunity to talk to a number of passers by about what we were doing.
A great afternoon and many thanks to the club members who assisted with our pack up which we managed before it got dark.