G0VQY's Amateur Radio Blog

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

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Well it's been an extremely busy day for the Queen today, unfortunately the weather was not really on her side and absolutely poured down all day in London, what a shame since it was 29°C last weekend, well that's British weather for you.

The weather hasn't been so bad down here, we've actually had quite a bit of sunshine and only a little bit of light rain.

I didn't get onto the radio until late afternoon but it seems the GQ call is still rather desirable and even though I'm just a mere English station, I managed to generate myself a pretty decent pileup, it's such good fun, I absolutely love it, if only it was like that all the time :-).

I went on again for just half an hour this evening and after a pretty slow start managed to get quite a few people calling.  I've made a couple of YouTube videos today, one of them is pretty awful which was rather annoying as you can see what it's like when you've got lots of people calling at the same time.  The audio settings on my Logitech 9000 WebCam was set a little bit high so I was rather scratchy when talking, not very nice if you are listening to me with speakers turned up quite high.  Anyway, after a few adjustments I've managed to cure the problem and I'm sure you will agree that the second video is much better than the first.  It was nice to speak to Osama over in Kuwait.  Those Kuwait stations always put in massive signals, very impressive.

We've just got seven days left to use the GQ call sign, I'm really hoping I can reach my goal 1000 contacts.  As of yesterday I think I was up to about 143 EQSL received from people I've spoken to using the GQ call.  That is absolutely fantastic, it's so nice to see people making use of this brilliant online QSL service.  I can't imagine having to write out several hundred cards by hand, and then have to fork out the money to post them, it's just completely out of the question.  I really hope that people realise that EQSL is the way to go.  I've already designed a special card for when we get to use the GO callsign for the Olympic Games here in the UK.  If it's as good as it has been in the last few weeks using the GQ call, then we've got a lot of fun to look forward to.

I'm afraid that this video is rather scratchy and you may actually find it difficult to listen to through loudspeakers

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1MOEyrE6Io

This video is much better, managed to make some adjustments in the audio input on the Logitech 9000 WebCam and I'm sure you would agree it is 100% better than the last video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmSl4ln1u4Y

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Queen's Diamond Jubilee Card

I was probably one of the first people who signed up for the special Diamond Jubilee amateur radio call sign when OFCOM publish the application forms, however I'm probably the last person to start using it.  I have got a good reason though, last week my birth mother and family came down for a weeks holiday to stay here with me so obviously I didn't do any radio operating at all.  Secondly my beam antenna has been totally out of action due to the gales we had three weeks ago.  Anyway, the three stooges, Steve, Ian and Nicholas came around last night and fixed my antennas for me.

I had a few minutes yesterday evening on 40 m using my special callsign which was fun, I only works if you local stations with at least it was nice to get on the air with the call.  This evening was a different ballgame altogether, I started calling on 20 m and within only a few minutes managed to develop a pretty hefty pile up, God I love pileups, they are so much fun.  You've basically got dozens of guys calling you all at the same time, obviously the strongest stations get through first, of course I worked a lot of Italians, they have always got strong signals.  Anyway, most of the stations I worked were in Europe, that the couple of guys over in the Middle East, one guy down in Saudi Arabia and another couple over in the Persian Gulf, blimey they were bloody big signals as well.  I think I worked about 30 or 40 stations in just an hour, I could have gone quicker if I wanted to but I wasn't really in the mood for just 59 and then move onto the next person, that isn't really my favourite way of operating.

Tomorrow is another day, I'm sure I will manage to generate another lovely big pileup that I can get my teeth into

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