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DX Wombat
22nd Nov 2007, 22:40
This (http://forums.flyer.co.uk/viewtopic.php?t=38764) is a once only chance for all radio amateurs. :ok:
M3WOM / 2E0WOM

Il Duce
23rd Nov 2007, 07:27
What's the link with D&D? They're not moving until the end of January 2008.

frostbite
23rd Nov 2007, 13:12
All I got was a screenfull of garbage.

Propogation failure?

Astral_Flyer
23rd Nov 2007, 13:47
First post from the thread that the OP was referring to:
To mark the transfer of services from West Drayton to Swanwick some of the chaps have laid on the following

"Special Event Amateur Radio callsign GB4EGTT will go on the air from LTCC on Saturday/Sunday 24/25th November, 2007

This activation of the callsign which embodies the ICAO locator code for LTCC, EGTT, from the West Drayton site, marks the transfer of executive control of the TC functions from LTCC West Drayton after nearly 40 years of operations to LACC Swanwick at 03.00 on Saturday 24th November, 2007.

The licence is valid until the 2nd December, and it is hoped to have other periods of activity before then to allow those who collect special event contacts a fair chance to contact us.

We hope to be QRV on all bands 80 metres to 6 metres, opening up the sessions on 80m."

Nice idea and I'm all for it. It's a shame that they haven't got anything on 2 Meters.

Astral http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a365/Kittywhirls/Untitled-1copy.gif

frostbite
23rd Nov 2007, 15:38
Thanks for that, AF. I'm still getting a page of

‹ etc.

G6TYQ

Crosshair
23rd Nov 2007, 20:52
I had a shortwave receiver as a kid (an old 1950s unit I inherited from my grandfather). I had fun playing with it. That was 20 years ago.

So the other day, I bought the magazine of the Australian amateur radio society, thinking that, you know, flying isn't eating enough of my money and maybe I should find another hobby.

I am baffled. I am a technically-minded person with competence in plenty of jargony fields, but the magazine confused me almost totally. Some Web browsing only added to my confusion.

Where do I start, if I want to get into amateur radio (receiving, then later broadcasting)?

Also, I kind of wonder what the point is -- I can see that 30 years ago, having contact with someone on another continent was exciting, but now, with cheap telephony and email, so what? I guess it's to do with the technical challenges involved, and fair enough. Is there more to it?

DX Wombat
23rd Nov 2007, 20:55
Crosshair, I'll try to put you in touch with someone I know out in Oz.

Crosshair
23rd Nov 2007, 21:00
Thanks. If there are beginners' web sites, maybe others would appreciate references here.

frostbite
23rd Nov 2007, 21:02
Crosshair, you should find there is a local radio club or even some friendly local amateurs nearby, unless you are really out in the bush, maybe even then.

Not sure of your local requirements but there is almost certainly an exam to pass to get you on air - not too difficult if I can pass!

If you are going for a licence (eventually) then don't waste money on any receive only gear.

Torres
23rd Nov 2007, 21:47
Crosshair. Go to the WIA (http://www.wia.org.au/) site for Australian license requirements.

You ask what use amateur radio and whether it has been superseded by more modern communication methods?

Well, it's a hobby, like any other. I've held an Amateur Radio license for well over 30 years, both in PNG (P29NBF) and Australia (VK4VEE). When I lived in PNG most evenings I would chat with my father (originally VK7AF, later VK4HF), a licensed amateur since before World War II, on the 15 meter band. Now he is silent key, I cherish those moments we had together.

I have an HF transceiver in my car and spend long periods traveling in the Aussie Outback. It relieves the boredom to chat with other amateurs, whilst avoiding 'roos and emus at 120 KPH!

It took two years of home study to pass my license exams in the early 1970's, when the study required was a lot more technical in basic theory. The knowledge of electronics I gained has been very useful over the years.

There are achievements one can work on. I gained the DXCC Award (confirmed contact with 100 different sovereign states), in only three months with my PNG call sign.

There is also the option of VHF and UHF transmission via amateur owned repeaters and satellites.

Like any hobby, it is what you make of it. For me, amateur radio has been a source of enjoyment for over 30 years, although I am not very active these days.

VK4VEE

Crosshair
23rd Nov 2007, 22:51
Torres and others,

Thanks for your replies.

I had a look at the WIA site, and it's interesting that there's now a Foundation license (in Australia) that seems quite accessible. Not much harder than a Boy Scout merit badge, actually. A day of study and 100 bucks and you're on the air. The last time I looked at amateur radio licensing, it required lots more depth of knowledge at even the lowest levels.

Learning Morse code put me off long ago, but I've since learned it for aviation anyway. And now it's not required for the Foundation license. Funny how things like that happen.

I live in an inner suburb of Sydney. If I get into this, am I going to need a big antenna? Because the neighbours won't go for it.

Thanks again.

Astral_Flyer
23rd Nov 2007, 23:59
Learning Morse code put me off long ago, but I've since learned it for aviation anyway. And now it's not required for the Foundation license. Funny how things like that happen.
I never bothered to learn morse well enough to pass the 12 wpm exam. I always had an interest in the technical aspects of the hobby. I did learn morse well enough to be able to decode beacons and the like.

In most countries nowadays you don't need morse to get on the HF bands..
I live in an inner suburb of Sydney. If I get into this, am I going to need a big antenna? Because the neighbours won't go for it.
The short answer to that is no. You can get away with some fairly short and neighbour friendly aerials. Even a reasonable length of wire (like 20 ft) connected to a reasonable ATU can be pressed into service on most HF bands. I use an MFJ-993 auto ATU hooked up to an end fed zep that is thirty feet long, and that works pretty well from 80 meters through to 10 meters..

Aerials for VHF and UHF can be pretty small and can be used indoors or in the loft

Astral

Torres
24th Nov 2007, 06:44
Crosshair. Look at a multi band trapped dipole, possibly in an inverted "V" configuration. Will probably fit along your side fence and need only one pole/mast.

Crosshair
24th Nov 2007, 07:23
Thanks everyone. Who's the best Australian supplier of this stuff, online or otherwise? I'd like to browse their catalog.

Jinkster
24th Nov 2007, 10:34
Thanks for the link DW and the kick to get me back into Radio Am stuff.

Jinkster
2E1 DFU

frostbite
24th Nov 2007, 12:59
"Who's the best Australian supplier of this stuff, online or otherwise?"

eBay?

(but do read up on any intended purchase on sites such as eham.net where there are lots of user reviews)

DX Wombat
24th Nov 2007, 14:00
Jinks! Well done! :D:D:D :ok: Now, how about sending me a pm or email to let me know how you are and what you are doing? ;)

Granite Monolith
25th Nov 2007, 00:36
Amatuer Radio enthusiats

Amatuer???

:8

Astral_Flyer
25th Nov 2007, 00:59
Granite Monolith - That's far more preferential than being called a Hma ... Oops ! Sorry ... I mean Ham :E

Astarl