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Sota news june 2008


In reply to G4SSH:
What is happening to the SOTA NEWS???
I can’t help but notice every month since Summits Knowledgebase News started, Our own NEWS has gone down the pan, Don’t get me wrong i like looking at the reports for activation on CW. It’s OK for all the reports on CW, But whats happened to the VHF and HF-SSB reports. I’m sure some of the other operators have sent you small clips, about whats happened on other bands. Or is SOTA just going CW, We hear every week about the Fun Nights, (on Tuesday’s, which band VHF/UHF). But still no report in the SOTA NEWS, We have contests here and there and everywhere, We hear Tom and GW0DSP (mike) on the reflector about 70cms,50mhz and 145mhz, Contest, Why is this not published on the Contest Calender, We have some good Backpackers on here, When this Sunday 08/06/2008, but no write up for them, ( before every starts shouting it’s on the reflector we all know,) But lets put more input into the sota news, We (SOTA) has now grown very big in the last few years, what with all these other countries now active, I have read on the relfector about other countries joining sota, I’m sure they don’t all use CW, Come on Roy lets have more write ups from other modes and Countries, You say Digimode, We dont have a report on here about that mode, If my memory serves me right G4RQJ and G8ADD or a other station did an activation on Digimode, We never got to hear anything on the sota news, About what they did, Dont forget SOTA started Summits On The Air. It looks like the break away group is getting more News than Sota,
Just my thoughts about the news, I dont do a lot on SOTA these days as other hobbies have over taken my past time, Or i would love to send you a report on the VHF side of the spectrum of Radio Ham.
Steve m0sgb,
Great news by the way. Always love to read Jon G4YSS’s reports.


In reply to M0SGB:

Hi Steve

I feel I have to jump to Roy’s defence here, not that he needs anyone to, Roy does a stirling job and it was a pleasure to work with him on SOTA News for the short time we were together.

Roy, just like me, is merely an news editor, we edit and present news items sent in by the participants, although both Roy and I do write our own pieces for our respective bulletins. The amount of news articles on any bulletin is purely down to the participant’s input.

If you want more variation in the news, send more articles in to Roy and I’m sure he would be grateful to receive them and include them in his editorial. Sometimes it can be a thankless job and very time consuming.

I would also like to make it crystal clear that there is no breakaway group in existance. On Summits Knowledgebase we merely offer an alternative and valuable resource to SOTA participants and general hill walkers alike.



In reply to GW0DSP:
Hi Mike, Yes i know Roy does a very good job, On the Editor side of the Sota news, But if you look back on the sota news for the last 3 months its nothing but CW. Why is it when we look on your web site we see/find more information on HF/VHF/UHF-FM/SSB, We also read reports about 5mhz, Contest news for everyone not just CW. but the news letter on Knowledgebase does cover every aspect of the group, HF, VHF, UHF, FM, SSB, Digimode, CW, Reports on other couintries, but not on SOTA NEWS, on the 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th May We can find loads of information about SOTA FUN NIGHTS, SOTA Activating on 4m and 6m, Microwave News, 23cms, But where can we find this on SOTA NEWS. (no where)…

Like you said quote ====

we merely offer an alternative and valuable resource to SOTA participants and general hill walkers alike.
This does seem to be much better than SOTA NEWS.

Steve m0sgb


In reply to GW0DSP:

I have to agree with Mike here. Having written the news articles several years ago I can testify to the amount of time and effort that goes into it. And yet, I probably didnt do half of the work. Most of the articles were sent in by other people and were just given minor tweaks for typos or length.

Roy has vast experience in CW and he can therefore add articles of his own to “bulk up” the news, and that may come across as all the articles being about CW. When I wrote the news, any article I placed was always about my main mode of 2M SSB.

I relied on, and I presume so does Roy, a great many people sending in articles and snippets. SOTA is now much bigger than when I did it and I guess the news is more difficult to get the right balance.

I particularly enjoyed this month the article about SOTA chasing without sotawatch. Although the mode used was CW, the article was not really about CW at all.

My tuppence,




Roy can only work with what he receives. I did not provide anything this month, something I intend to put right next time. It seems I was not the only one, for Roy bulked out the News with a considerable amount of his own writing. Good stuff as well, if I might say so Roy. So what if there’s lots of CW in the News Steve? CW is the most used mode in SOTA, so surely no problem with the News having a weighting in that direction either? It’s what most ops are using, and more are trying to learn to join in, so Roy’s extra articles are very timely I would say.

The solution is simple. The best (and sometimes only) way you can influence the balance and flavour of the articles in the SOTA News, is to submit some yourself. You want articles about SOTA activating with FM and SSB? Get writing, and maybe others will too - a kind of snowball effect.



In reply to G4SSH:

Little more info on the May 1 - 4 activation in OH/KI. Since the propagation was so bad on May 1 and May 2 afternoons I checked the calculations again with VOAProp. I noticed that early morning would give better results. This was also in agreement with the activations that happened same days in Norway. Thus I spent the Saturday May 3 skiing in Levi ski resort. I woke up on Sunday morning around 5:00 local time or 0200 UTC. I was on top of Levi 6:30 local time or 0330 UTC. The ski lifts opened only at 10:00. First CQ at 0346 UTC on 7028 kHz. There was ARI contest going on - unvisely I did not reply their calls and got the first reply from Serge UT3WW on 10116 kHz 0422 UTC. First SOTA chaser was Hans SM3TLG on 7032 kHz 0522 UTC. After two more chasers and no others I did not stay there any more to wait that the rest of the EU wakes up.

73, Jaakko OH7BF/F5VGL


Great news Roy, in response to the comments above, I would echo that you can only work with you are given in terms of articles, and the rest of the news will naturally be bulked out with something that you are knowledgable about / interested in.

I personally am very interested in the CW tips in the news as I am trying my best to be competent at QRP CW so I can use homebrew equipment from the summits. (My Rock-Mite 20 has now been shipped :slight_smile: according to website).

73 Colin


Thank you for the news. I enjoyed John’s description of his Top Band antenna development, testing and subsequent deployment. I look forward to the next episode.
Keep up the good work, much appreciated.



Having now eventually had time to fully read and digest the news, I would congratulate Roy on a very interesting edition, and in particular, thank him and John for the excellent feature articles. I thoroughly enjoyed reading them and found them very informative and thought-provoking.

I was shocked to see myself and two of my friends in Macclesfield mentioned in the 160m article, but yes, we did dabble on a recent Saturday evening! I only wish I had taken the paddle up with me; maybe next time.

The CW signal reports discussion is fascinating. As a relative newcomer to CW, I did wonder if people were doubling up on the R and S numbers, due to the amount of 339, 449 and 559 reports received. Now I know! I do look at my S point indication on the FT-817 display when considering what report to give, but my ears have the final say. I was an active SWL for 13 years before becoming licensed, so the instinct is always to use the ears rather than the meter! I have been, largely, sending actual accurate reports, so sorry if you’ve despaired st any 429, 579 and 589 reports coming from my station Roy! (For some reason, those three seem quite common for me to give). During the big pile-ups in GI, I did, as a matter of survival, stop giving the reports I was sending so much thought, and largely banged out 339, 559 or 599. Really, it doesn’t matter what you send - if the other station receives it correctly, and vice versa, it’s a good contact. It is best to stick to sensible anticipatable (is that a word) reports though! I recently sent an accurate 587 report where there was a problem with the tone. I was asked for a repeat so many times by a confused station that I changed it to 589 - after which I got an immediate “R R R”!



In reply to M0SGB:

I have read all the above comments with interest and am encouraged with the response. Thank you to everyone who replied.

However, as the post from Steve M0SGB did not appear until the 5th there are many SOTA members who are unaware of this thread, having already read the news.

I will therefore publish the letter from Steve in the July edition of SOTA News, along with my reply so that the subject can gain a wider audience.

73 Roy G4SSH


I’ve always been honest with my reports, both as SWL and HAM. In my opinion reports are to learn from: both propogation and quality of the transmission.



In reply to G4SSH:

thanks for all the QSOs with DL/G4DDL/P and thanks for the CW news.
The FT817 did a grand job in DL and the KX1 never left its box as the 817 gave me all bands/modes. That said 95% of QSOs were in CW mode with one HF SSB (OK2OP on 40m I think) and a few (6?) on 2m SSB.

Thanks for spotting me on at least one occasion and you are right I worked you several times just hearing the last seven dits!!! I think DL/G4DDL/P has to many similar sounding characters for most people to work out!

Thanks for the excellent CW news letter. I have a database in my PC log but that is not available from the Hilltops, I may try to put something into my iPaQ at some stage. I have a logger there but it has some bugs on my version of iPaQ.

Re QSO exchange, I send a real RST to everyone from ears rather than S meter. I receive what seem to be real reports and I try to send my SOTA every few summits even if it has not been requested. It was a real pleasure to find so many G regulars on CW! Unfortunately I was not able to find a good slot on 40m SSB to work Graham G4JZF who is an old friend from 70cm cumulative contests many years ago.

Many UK stations were audible on 5MHz from Germany, of course I was not able to work them as my NoV is not acceptable there I believe. No 6m QSOs either due to licence problems (fixed stations only no /P) but lots of good DX heard.

cheers for now

Mike G4DDL