Monthly Archives: October 2015


This weekend saw members of the bunker group activating the site for the CQWW SSB Contest.  Operating from the Dave M0YOL’s caravan awning, we set up two stations, one at each end.


We arrived about midday on Friday 23rd October and got setup. Dave M0TAZ was underway with the construction of his 21 MHz beam while George M1GEO and Dave M0YOL were setting up the caravan. Some time later the 14 MHz beam was built and put on the SCAM12.


Then food! Here, we see the pre-contest dinner inside the awning, with (left to right) Dave M0YOL, Dave M0TAZ and Chris G8OCV.


… and breakfast …


Station 1

  • Icom IC7700 HF transceiver
  • Heathkit SB200 amplifier
  • Yaesu GX600RC rotator


Station 2

  • Kenwood TS990 HF transceiver
  • HAL 1200 amplifier



  • 14 MHz 3 element homebrew yagi
  • 21 MHz 4 element homebrew yagi
  • 1.8/3.5 MHz doublet; 26 metres
  • 28 MHz vertical dipole; 8 metres
  • 7 MHz ground-plane vertical; ground level22281497689_620db97656_k-281x500

The shack was powered by two Honda EU20i 2kW slient generators with phasing harness, delivering a solid 4kW of mains power.  We were a bit worried with the heavy rain on Saturday, so we fashioned an umbrella to help protect the electrics!


During the evenings, it got pretty cold. Here, George M1GEO operates with hood up for insulation, while Dave M0TAZ’s amplifier reports 8C inside the shack.



Band conditions were good (and busy), and many QSOs were made over the weekend.  At the start of the contest, some of the lower bands became very packed!



Overall, we worked 1434 in our casual operating weekend.  You can see the full log here. Some interesting contacts include Tunisia, many Caribbean Islands, China, Ceuta & Melilla, French Guiana, Liechtenstein, African Italy, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.  For more information, look at the full countries breakdown!

Band QSOs
160m 66
80m 137
40m 276
20m 481
15m 348
10m 126
All 1434

A more comprehensive breakdown of QSOs per band can be found here.








Operator QSOs
M1GEO  740
M0TAZ  551
M0YOL  143
All 1434

Much more analysis and breakdown can be found on the CQWW 2015 SNBCG pages.  Analysis by SH5 v.2.39, Dmitriy Gulyaev UA4WLI.

A big thanks to Dave, Dave and Dave (M0YOL, M0TAZ and G7UVW) as well as Chris G8OCV, Pete G0IAP and George M1GEO for making the weekend possible.

Casual Operating in the Shack

This weekend a few of us decided to head down in to the Shack at GB0SNB to do some operating.  The HF bands were full of stations in the Worked All Germany and BARTG RTTY contest, as well as JOTA activation stations.

In between working a few on HF, we managed to pull around 20 contacts on 2 metres, and had a nice pileup on 145.400 MHz.


Above Chis G8OCV and Dave M0TAZ operate on HF.


Here we see Dave M0TAZ operating on 145 MHz FM.

RSGB 21/28 MHz contest

The RSGB contest provided an ideal opportunity to focus activity on the higher HF bands. Previous John M0UKD and I had built beams for  28 MHz 3e beam and  21 MHz 4e beam using the design on DK7ZB website.  28 MHz is a compact design using a 3m boom, and 21 MHz is somewhat bigger at 5m boom.

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The Racal PU12 mast was used for the 28 MHz antenna and Clark 10 for the 21 MHz antenna. Power was provided by the Honda 2KW silent generator and the radio was provided by George M1GEO the Icom 7700 delivering 200w RF.

21317020033_44fe6db48c_zThe operating was alfresco as the October weather was  sunny and warm. The shack table was positioned close to the mast ready for armstrong rotation The Clark mast was modelling some new blue legs, recently fabricated by Brian 2E0FHU. They worked perfectly and once assembled they provided a sturdy base.


A quick check with the MFJ analyser confirmed the antenna was spot on resonance, and so the CQ calling could commence.

Despite a valiant effort on both 21 and 28 MHz conditions did not support the number of QSO we had hopped, in fact you could say it was a challenge to work anyone at times. QSO could be hard to tease out, and we decided the best method was to work anyone we could  hear. Some big DX did arrive, as we managed to work ZS6AI, ZS5DCF, CX8DS, VP8NO and PS8BR to name a few. The bands did seem to be open, at one stage we listened to a CW beacon in South America that was very loud (apparently 10w).


Despite the lack of activity or poor band conditions we enjoyed our time operating outdoors in the sunshine.

Both homebrew beams worked well, and this may well be the last time we operate outdoors in 2015.

Further picture from the day are available online.

Thanks to everyone we worked 73 Dave M0TAZ, George M1GEO and John M0UKD

EDIT (30 November 2015)

The RSGB results come through today, and we were pleased to have won the Powditch Trophy for the Leading UK Multi-Op station achieving the highest score on 28MHz. With the help of the team, M0TAZ M0UKD and G3SVK (G8OCV in support).


Antenna Maintenance

Exposed on the side of a 50 meter mast the antenna often requires maintenance. George M1GEO and Chris G8OCV have over the years perfected the best way to mount the antenna, and on this occasion is had lasted close on 2 years. Antenna maintenance in the afternoon sun is much preferable to winter rain, so we too advantage of the weather to pull up the new doublet antenna. The doublet is 40m per leg, into 300 Ohm ladder line and then a 4:1 Balun.

The doublet is 40m per leg, into 300 Ohm ladder line and then a 4:1 Balun.


The centre of the antenna is made from a plastic chopping board from one of the discount value stores, ideal for insulators. The wire is multi strand 13A flex, ideal for antennas and hopefully robust enough to survive the winter weather.

The centre of the antenna is pulled up onto the mast, elevated to 20m and the ends are on one side into a tree and the other a warning siren. Its quite difficult to locate suitable points for the antenna ends, and elevation without snagging in the local trees is always a challenge. Once setup we managed a couple of QSO on 80m.

73 Dave M0TAZ, George M1GEO, Chris G8OCV