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LA1KHA's PP3/MN1604 Challenge


#261

Battery: #1
Activation #14
Date: 09/06/12
Summit: G/NP-028
Bands:30m
Finish Voltage: 8.00V
Rig: Home brew 30m rig 'MRM-39’
Ant: Inv. Vee dipole at 6m above ground
QSOs: 5
New DXCCs:0
Cumulative QSOs: 109
Cumulative DXCC: 18 DL,EA,F,G,GI,GM,GW,HA,HB9,LA,OE,OK,OM,ON,OZ,PA,S5,SP
WX: Misty and damp with a strong breeze. About 11C, but felt colder with windchill

With M1EYP keeping the challenge going, I decided to get the old rig and it’s battery out of the M0CGH QRP cupboard (a hoard of delights!). Of course the summit had to be G/NP-028 - it’s just too convenient, although it’s not a particularly inspiring location!

I was pleased that the home brew rig still seems to work, it hasn’t been touched since it was displayed on the SOTA display at Blackpool. Signal reports seemed pretty good today, I noticed that Åge, LA1ENA posted a spot stating that I was hitting 599!

To top off a great activation, I managed to work Rich, N4EX and Barry, N1EU using QRO (5 watts!) on 21MHz from my FT817 - does anyone want to sell me their 500hz filter for £few? :wink:

72
Colin
M0CGH


#262

In reply to M0CGH:
Hi Colin
After our qso your signal was really nice with a steady 599 signal for about 5 minutes. No copy on 15 mtrs though. Very nice to qso with you. Hope to meet up again in October for the G-QRP convention.
73/72
de
Aage/LA1ENA


#263

In reply to LA1ENA:

Thanks Aage.

Yes, hoping to attend the G-QRP convention this year, will be nice to meet you again.

73
Colin
M0CGH


#264

In reply to M1EYP:

It isn’t immediately apparent from listening whether the QRG is clear
or not, but when the chasers come back saying PSE QSY UP 2 and such,
then that is a good indication!

Hi Tom,

I use rockmites a little bit on 40 and 30 and my strategy for deciding if the qrg is available is to switch between the 2 frequencies available from the crystal. If the cw I can hear on one decreases to a sub audible thump on the other then the frequency where I could hear the tone is occupied, I then use the one with the thump knowing I’m about 700hz away from that op. If the tone on one sounds like I should be able to work it but doubles in tone when switching to the other qrg then I can’t work him as I’ll be 700hz or more away, therefore both qrgs are available.

Sometimes I just try to elbow my way in there selfishly with my 400mW or rf (no qrpp for me) :slight_smile:

I’ve probably not explained it well and I’m teaching you to suck eggs, but thought it might help a little.

73, Ian MM0GYX


#265

Battery: #1 Philips Extreme Life
Activation #15
Date: 11/06/12
Summit: G/NP-028
Bands:30m, 40m
Finish Voltage: 7.85V :frowning:
Rig: Home brew 30m rig ‘MRM-39’, 40m RockMite in Altoids tin
Ant: Inv. Vee dipole at 6m above ground
QSOs: 9
New DXCCs:0
Cumulative QSOs: 118
Cumulative DXCC: 18 DL,EA,F,G,GI,GM,GW,HA,HB9,LA,OE,OK,OM,ON,OZ,PA,S5,SP
WX: Dry and overcast, about 10C, little wind.

Due to an important sporting event (something involving a leather ball?), my work hours were changed today to allow an early finish - I worked out a nice solution to get rid of the extra time- I dusted off the RockMite 40 with the view to putting it on air again.

The last time I had used the RM-40 was in March and I remember how I didn’t like the upgraded keyer chip. I took the original RockMite keyer chip to work with me and put it back into the rig.

My MRM-39 has a PicoKeyer chip installed and when I swapped rigs for the RM-40 on today’s activation I found I was really struggling with the keying, I first suspected my key, but it was probably the difference in timing between the keyer chips, causing me to make mistakes, so apologies to any chasers who struggled to copy my CW today!

I called CQ a lot today, so the battery has had a bit of a hammering. When I switched on the MRM-39, a 5 letter group station was busy sending away, I didn’t really fancy competing with it! The Rockmite circuitry (on which the MRM-39 is based) allows you to swap over the TX/RX frequencies, so I did this and the new frequency seemed very quiet to me. I almost started to think that there was something wrong with my rig, but after a self spot, Stefan, OM7DX called me with a nice signal. Stefan gave me a 539 report but commented that there was heavy QRM. Mike, DJ5AV and Sake, PA0SKP followed Stefan into the log book, but then all went quiet.

A change of rigs brought me on to 40m. After a few minutes of calling CQ, I decided that a self spot was in order, this brought in some new chasers for me. I had a steady flow of contacts for about 10 minutes before all went quiet again. 40m sounded very busy as usual, I guess my QRPp signal was quite easy to lose in the QRM soup. I was just about to go QRT when I was called by G3MJX, Tony, near to Cromer, Norfolk. Tony was also running QRP. We had a short chat rather than the usual rubber stamp, although QRM made things very difficult towards the end of the contact.

All together a successful activation I think.

73
Colin
M0CGH


#266

18-Jun-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #9
Summit: G/SP-015. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 17 (9A, DL, G, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 8. Cumulative QSOs: 53

Bosley Cloud on the way home from work. Beautiful weather - for all you non-hayfever sufferers. I am genuinely pleased for you all, really I am.

Also added in 4 QSOs on 2m FM via the VX7-R handheld prior to descending, taking the activation to 12 contacts. Thanks to all.

Tom M1EYP


#267

In reply to M1EYP:

Can someone point me to the challenge rules?
TIA
Pete


#268

LA1KHA’s post of 1st November 2010 in the ‘Rocking with the Rockmite’ thread.

Using the search facilty on the ‘Reflector’ link above and entering ‘LA1KHA’ was the trick to finding this :wink:

Tom M1EYP


#269

In reply to M1EYP:

Many Thanks Tom and also to Colin who replied off list.

I’ll give it a try soon :slight_smile:

Pete


#270

In reply to G4ISJ:

I’ll give it a try soon :slight_smile:

Pete

I look forward to seeing your reports/results :slight_smile:

I find the challenge very addictive, I just wish I had more time to operate. To give you a ball park figure, my less than optimized 30m challenge transceiver uses a chunk less than 10 mA on receive and a chunk less than 80mA on transmit - how big are the chunks? - That would be telling! :wink:

Good luck

73
Colin
M0CGH


#271

19-Jun-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #10
Summit: G/SP-015. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 17 (9A, DL, G, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 0. Cumulative QSOs: 53

After-work activation of The Cloud. Everything set up. Tried to be clever and program the message memories in the Picokeyer chip in the Rockmite 30. Didn’t have the instructions with me, so pressed some wrong buttons and ended up reversing my paddle, increasing the speed to 55wpm and all sorts of other stupid things I couldn’t undo. And managed to rip a wire out of the PP3 battery connector!

Packed up, and worked Jimmy’s mate Edward M6NSR/A on 2m FM handie in order to make the outing into an activation (of sorts).

Tom M1EYP


#272

20-Jun-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #11
Summit: G/SP-015. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 17 (9A, DL, G, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 0. Cumulative QSOs: 53

Yet another failure. This time, up Cloud summit bright and early, and without the manual again which I managed to leave in the car. The result was another unsuccessful attempt to program the Picokeyer chip message memories, and so much time wasted that I was suddenly in danger of being late to work.

Packed up, and made 2 QSOs on 2m FM with the VX7-R.

Tom M1EYP


#273

20-Jun-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #12
Summit: G/SP-013. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 2 - GM and PA
Cumulative DXCCs: 19 (9A, DL, G, GM, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, PA, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 3. Cumulative QSOs: 56

Better organised this afternoon, in the lovely warm sunshine, and the very unlovely high pollen count. Already done Cloud today, so it had to be Gun on the way home from work. This time, had the manual to hand, and managed to program both message memories (Picokeyer chip in the Rockmite 30) - one for CQ SOTA from Gun G/SP-013 GFF-014 and one for Cloud G/SP-015. I even got to grips with the need to enter the slashes twice (to avoid confusion with commands), and also managed to include commands like /R to take up less memory space.

Only 3 QSOs were made on 30m CW, but this was a marked improvement on recent outings, and included two new DXCCs for me in the challenge. Particular thanks to GM4JYB who I was halfway through working when the mast collapsed, and was still there to complete the QSO once up and running again!

Tom M1EYP


#274

21-Jun-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #13
Summit: G/SP-015. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 19 (9A, DL, G, GM, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, PA, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 1. Cumulative QSOs: 57

Early mornings are clearly not the best times for the PP3 Challenge on 30m. 20m would be the way to go to win this challenge, and I might just do that at some point in the future.

In the meantime, I will plod on with 30m, and try to select my operating times more favourably! Thanks to Mike DJ5AV, the only station to call me on this one, worked at 0629z.

The intention was to press on with daily activations, but it has been somewhat wet for the last couple of days. Thanks to Colin M0CGH who posted a replacement battery lead for my Rockmite, which arrived this morning.

Tom M1EYP


#275

6-Jul-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #14
Summit: G/LD-046. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 19 (9A, DL, G, GM, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, PA, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 0. Cumulative QSOs: 57

For report, see “Food, beer, work & SOTA” thread.

Tom M1EYP


#276

8-Jul-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #15
Summit: G/LD-052. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 19 (9A, DL, G, GM, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, PA, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 3. Cumulative QSOs: 60

For report, see “Food, beer, work & SOTA” thread.

Tom M1EYP


#277

11-Jul-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #16
Summit: G/SP-015. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 19 (9A, DL, G, GM, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, PA, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 3. Cumulative QSOs: 63

It was a nice afternoon, so a diversion to The Cloud G/SP-015 was in order on the way home from work.

This was a difficult activation with contacts hard to come by. After a couple of self-spots and loads of CQ calling, I was about to give up when OZ4RT called in. He was worked with reports of 559 both ways. But then I did resort to 2m FM from the handheld, making 4 QSOs culminating with a S2S with Viki M6BWA/P on Great Knoutberry Hill G/NP-015.

Another call on the Rockmite brought OK1CZ and OE2ASL into the log, before I packed up and went home, with 7 QSOs under my belt. Many thanks to all that worked me.

I traded the rhythm of the morse for the rhythm of the music, spending the evening rehearsing the saxophone players for my band. Come and see us at The Wharf in Macclesfield, 7.30pm Sunday (15th) night if you are around.

Tom M1EYP


#278

17-Jul-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #17
Summit: GW/NW-062. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 19 (9A, DL, G, GM, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, PA, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 5. Cumulative QSOs: 68

17-Jul-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #18
Summit: GW/NW-039. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 19 (9A, DL, G, GM, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, PA, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 0. Cumulative QSOs: 68


#279

Battery: #1 Philips Extreme Life (Best Before April 2012!)
Activation #16
Date: 17/07/12
Summit: G/NP-028
Bands:30m, 17m
Finish Voltage: 7.93V :slight_smile: (it’s gone up!)
Rig: Home brew 30m rig ‘MRM-39’, 17m RockMite 'Helvellyn’
Ant: Inv. Vee dipole at 6m above ground
QSOs: 0
New DXCCs:0
Cumulative QSOs: 118
Cumulative DXCC: 18 DL,EA,F,G,GI,GM,GW,HA,HB9,LA,OE,OK,OM,ON,OZ,PA,S5,SP
WX: Sunny, then drizzle, then heavy rain. Breezy

My first nil QSO activation.

Better luck next time


#280

18-Jul-12
Battery: #1. Activation: #19
Summit: G/SP-015. Band: 30m
Radio: Rockmite 30
Antenna: Inverted V Dipole @ 6m agl
Battery: Duracell Pro-Life
Finish Voltage at room temp: Not a clue
New DXCCs: 0
Cumulative DXCCs: 19 (9A, DL, G, GM, HA, HB, I, LA, LZ, OE, OK, OM, OZ, PA, RA, S5, SM, SP, SV)
QSOs: 0. Cumulative QSOs: 68

Yet another nil QSO activation - as far as the challenge goes. There was all sorts of data and rubbish on 10.115MHz, so the poor Rockmite didn’t stand a chance.

I replaced it with the FT-817 and went to 10.118MHz. Now it was easy, and 13 QSOs were made in short order. Sadly, none can be credited to my PP3 Challenge score!

I will be aiming for 42 QSOs in tomorrow morning’s activation.

Tom M1EYP