With December YOTA month now well behind us, focus turns to the QSL requirements for so many stations and such a big activation. Working as a sole QSL Manager within United Radio means that I am responsible for handling all YOTA QSL requests. This includes Bureau, Direct and SWL reports.
I hope to send these QSL cards to all world IARU Bureaux on the second first weekend of February, which leaves little time between requests slowing down to getting the cards sent out. And with 3-5000 QSL cards for up to 40 call signs to process is a difficult task, but a task that instills faith that Young Operators are still progressing through this hobby. With that said, please Consider donating to help fund the bureau. No bureau operates free of charge and there are many costs involved in getting your QSL card from A to B. So any donations are gratefully received (Link at the bottom of this post).
Moving on into the future now, With the recent announcement of YOTA summer camp 2018 being held in South Africa (ZS) I am really excited to begin work with a new group of youngsters to give the best, one of a kind QSL design for their activity week. I will work closely with the team to ensure that logs are uploaded online at regular intervals throughout the week and that all QSO’s are safely stored for the world to collect their confirmations.
Many Amateur’s from around the world are now preparing for the 3Y0Z DXpedition to Bouvet Island. Bouvet (or Bouvetøya in Norweigen) is a sub-antarctic land that belongs to Norway. it is located in the South Atlantic Ocean. Bouvet is Located around 2600 km south west of South Africa, and is known as the most remote island on Earth.
Bouvet is also #2 on the DXCC most wanted list. This means that amateurs and shortwave Listeners alike will be gearing up to face the pile ups that are inevitable.
Top 5 most wanted taken from Clublog.org
So what have I done to prepare? From working previous DXpeditions I have a pre-made 2 element Delta loop for 17m. This is currently beaming South East after the recent DXpedition 6O6O to Somalia. I intend now to add a 3rd element to this Delta loop array and point due south for Bouvet. I have also constructed a phased vertical array for 40m. This will give me much needed gain on the low band to bust the pile up and work the band slot. It also gives me a backup option should 17m be un-workable. (I will write a more in depth article about the phased array another time)
I am by no means a big gun station, However, I have done everything in my power to maximize my chances of working the team on Bouvet. If you are unsure of which band to be on, check out the propagation prediction on the 3Y0Z website! dx-prediction-3y0z
Best of luck to the team heading for Bouvet Island! And I hope to work you at 3G9A/MM on the MV Betanzos! By the way. You can track their progress here.
Philipp, DK6SP (20 years), and I, M0SDV, (17 years), will be QRV from Bonaire as PJ4/homecall from 16.03.2018 – 02.04.2018. Operation will take place at the QTH of PJ4DX.
We will try to be QRV from 160m through 6m focusing on WARC bands outside of the contest.
Modes will be mostly CW and SSB but also digital modes like RTTY or FT8 are planned. The activity also includes participation in the upcoming CQ WPX SSB 2018 contest. Operators will be DK6SP, M0SDV, PJ4DX, PJ4KY and PJ4NX. Category and contest call will be announced in time.
During our stay on Bonaire there is also a trip planned to another DXCC in the Caribbean. Please see Twitter for Live updates
QSLs will be via home calls for both operations.
We would like to say an enormous Thank you to Steve PJ4DX for loaning us his equipment and helping us along the way! We couldn’t have done it without you!
Also Thank you to DX Commander and G3TXQ Hexbeams for antenna loans!
As most of you know Youngsters on the air holds a big event in December every year. I am the QSL manager for this event and I wanted to come up with a method to include SWL’s within an OQRS system. So I got to thinking, What if I made an online form.
This form was designed with the intention to take all the required details to confirm an SWL report. Such as; SWL call, Email address, Station heard, QSO details and 3 QSO’s heard with another station. So far this has been a success with well over 150 SWL requests. Well up on the 30 Requests from last year.
And don’t forget, It’s Not too late. If you haven’t requested your SWL QSL card for December YOTA month Click HERE
This weekend as I’m sure you are aware was the ARRL DX SSB contest. It’s safe to say that conditions were not in our favor. I was lucky enough to take part in the contest from the station of Don G3BJ using his contest call sign G5W. I operated M/S High power along with Kieran 2E0NCN
To start the contest 40m was exceptionally poor giving only a small handful of Q’s and very few mults. We though that this could be a problem with the antenna to start. So over to 80 we went. Using a Titanex Vertical and a beverage for RX we did manage some nice runs early on, but as expected, quickly, it went quiet. 160m held very few Q’s.
As the low bands were closing me and Don began to lower the 2 element 40 for inspection. Other than some tangled wires from Doris we found now faults with the antenna bar a few missing pop rivets. Easily fixed. We also re tuned the antenna to bring it resonant slightly higher into the SSB portion of the band. problem solved. However the A index still remained as high as 26 for the duration.
Later on 20m picked up for a very big run. Reasonable sized pile ups were leading to a fast increase in the number of Q’s in the log. and the rate continued for a few hours. 15m wasn’t very productive although we did snatch some mults on the east coast. Not much else on 15 was audible/workable.
Another night past and 40m had improved enough to get a 300 Q run.They seemed to all come at the same time! Not great but better than nothing.
After the low band closing up on the Sunday I decided to have a listen for some other DX and this is when we noticed a problem with the 3ele SteppIR. After figuring that it couldnt be fixed easier we decided to take the fixed A3s Tri bader away from the fixed tower and swap it with the SteppIR. And we did it in record time! To lower 2 towers, remove 2 antennas and put the Tri bander back in the air. Around 3 hours. So as it goes we spent alot of our rest time working on antennas. No complaints though! it had to be done.
For the remainder of the contest 20m proved to be the band to be on, supplying us with regular Q’s but no great runs. and then towards the end of the contest there was a slow rate of around 50 Q/hr.