I didn’t do a very good job of the 1st RSGB 70 MHz contest I’m afraid.
There were a number of problems.
- I was very tired & very grumpy – this never helps!
- The conditions weren’t great – so QRP operation such as ours is at the moment really finds it hard going.
- The Stihl saw noise was a little distracting from out on the patio.
- The antenna rotator was challenging – I didn’t know where I was pointing the antennas most of the time and I couldn’t go out and check because I would have been drenched as the patio was being jet washed
- One unfortunate operator who was nearby developed an intermittent RF feedback problem and at certain times large portions of the band were wiped out – this can happen to anyone.
Apparently I had awful audio again but fortunately Peter G4IZH was on hand to give me some help with this. Peter is a very technically minded chap who knows his onions and I am now pretty sure that things are fine. There are some settings on the TS-570D that should not be used! TX bandwidth and TX-EQ! They were wrong and sounded awful, no wonder no-one would talk to me. Mind you that wasn’t a problem on cw and they wouldn’t answer me there either.
I discovered something very interesting about the antenna that we are using as well; the front to back ratio is very poor. I suspect that it is an assembly issue because the data sheet for the antenna indicates that the antenna has very respectable front to back and the data is reputable.
I feel sure that the new antenna will make a considerable difference to our station performance as well.
We certainly need an amplifier, this will increase our signal by 10dB. That will hopefully be completed by the end of the month in time for the contest on the 30th.
Can’t wait to do the antenna work this coming weekend.