G0VQY's Amateur Radio Blog

What's on the mind of a UK ham radio operator?

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Not sure what has happened to this solar activity that is supposed to be giving us improved conditions on many bands, 12 and 10 m are pretty much dead at the moment, at least they are when I checked anyway. Apparently there was something on this morning but it was far too early for me, I'm afraid I'm not an early riser.

Anyway, the biggest advantage of having a very efficient antenna is when times are hard and conditions are bad, at least we can still get on the bands and make some good contacts, even some pretty good DX. I started off early this afternoon on 20 m (what's new? I hear you saying). Started to get quite a few stations coming back to me, all of them mainland Europe, Italy, Romania, Spain and the Ukraine. Then some complete toss pot started transmitting a horrible noise on the frequency which totally wrecked it so I switched off and went and had dinner. I don't understand the mentality of people who go around and seemingly take great delight in trying to ruin someone's day. In my case my suspicion is that they have seen my live stream which obviously makes what they are doing that much more enjoyable because they can see exactly what is going on my end. I don't know, I don't want to stop the live stream because I know a lot of people like watching, but if this is what is going to happen on a regular basis then I will knock it on the head and stop using it all together.

I switched on the radio again just after five o'clock this afternoon but there really wasn't much activity at all. EA8OB was absolutely romping in from the Canaries so I gave him a quick shout, not surprisingly it was 59+ both ways. I then had a little bit of a tune around the frequencies and it was virtually dead, in fact I couldn't hear anything apart from a little voice in the back of the box, it was Stephen, G7DIE operating mobile. He didn't seem to be getting any replies to his call so I went back to him. We had a brief chat then a station from South Africa shouted in, it was ZS1RJQ and he seemed to be able to hear us quite well. I then left Stephen to his frequency, moved up the band and started shouting. It wasn't long before I got a nice surprise, John, 5Z4JC from Kenya replied to my call and he was a good 59 and gave me the same signal. I had a really nice QSO with him before the band started dying so we said our farewells. A couple more South African stations replied to my call, ZS6RSN & ZR6XZ and then 3DA0TM from Swaziland blasted out of my speaker. So even though the band seem pretty much dead for the day, putting out a few calls resulted in some good contacts, not anything spectacular but enjoyable nevertheless.

Tagged in: 3DA0TM 5Z4JC
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