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Visiting UK - best 2 metre freqs?


#1

I will be visiting the UK, arriving 21 June, for three weeks, based in St. Albans with a week in Dorset. I’m planning on activating Wendover Woods CE-005 and Hardown Hill SC-011. I’ll be bringing a 2m HT, and my MFD from SOTAbeams has already been delivered to my parents’ place in St.Albans! I understand that 145.500 is the calling freq, any hints as to other 2m simplex frequencies for these hills?
Thanks, Hal N6JZT


#2

Hi Hal,
This article from the RSGB explains the UK band plan:
http://rsgb.org/main/operating/band-plans/vhf-uhf/144mhz-band/

As you say 145.5 is the FM simplex calling frequency but it is not good to stay there, when I was based in the UK, one would move off to S22 (145.550) as a second choice. With the implementation of 12.5KHz spacing the channel descriptors have been changed to Vnn, so I’m not sure what 145.550 is as a V number. In any case if you are programming channels into your HT, I’d certainly put 145.5 and 145.55. You might want to program whetever the local repeater is as well. While contacts via the repeater don’t count for SOTA points, it is OK to call there to ask for a simplex contact on say, 145.550.

Hopefully someone located closer to G/CE-005 can give you advise as to the local repeater frequencies (and CTCSS) and locally used simplex channels.

73 Ed G8GLM / DD5LP / VK2JI.

P.S. Do you know it’s HAM Radio in Friedrichshafen from June 26th-28th, since you’re in Europe, you might want to visit the largest Amateur radio meeting in Europe.


#3

[quote=“DD5LP, post:2, topic:10997”]so I’m not sure what 145.550 is as a V number.[/quote]Mostly, folk seem to just give the frequency. The only folk I hear using channel numbers are old-timers who still use S20, S16, and so on.

Oh, and there are still quite a few rigs out there with their FM deviation set for 25kHz spacing. It’s quite disruptive when they set up only 12.5kHz away and then run at legal limit…


#4

Hi Hal

I live very close to Wendover Woods at the bottom of the hill. Send me a message when you plan to visit.

Anyway calling on 145.500 (and then moving up or down) should work but it’s sometimes difficult to rustle up activity on 2m around here during the day. The local repeater on 2m is GB3VA (Output on 145.700, input 145.100, CTCSS 118.8) and I am sure that you could drag someone off of there if necessary.

Good luck… Marc G0AZS, K1UG


#5

Hal, I see from your qrz page that you used to have a UK callsign, do you still have it? If not then I expect you will be M/N6JZT (note not G/N6JZT).

Wendover Woods has two areas that are commonly used for activations, the actual summit inside the woods and the trig point which is in a field just outside the woods but still in the activation area. It’s easier to put up HF antennas by the trig point.

Colin G8TMV


#6

G5+ three letter callsigns were old style reciprocal licences which were killed off in the 80’s ISTR.


#7

Hal, if you Alert for Wendover Woods and hopefully get Spotted I will be able to work you if I’m in, but Hardown Hill will be out of range for me unless the tropo is good.

Brian


#8

The V number is just double the S number, but I have never, ever, heard anybody use these channel designations on air. Usually people give the frequency and very frequently drop the MHz, so you’ll hear things like “down to 450”, meaning 145.450MHz.

You’ll also sometimes hear phrases like “up one”, meaning up by one 25kHz channel, i.e. 145.525MHz.

If you are on a summit you will usually be the one choosing the working frequency. It can be a good idea to move several channels away from the calling frequency (e.g. 145.400). You’re less likely to be trampled on by people who move onto the adjacent channels without checking (or who simply cannot hear the chaser who is talking to you).

It is very unlikely that you will need to use the “odd” 12.5kHz channels. Several of them are used for internet linking, but they are very rarely used for casual QSOs.


#9

There’s nothing wrong with us ‘Old Timers’ :smile: But then I can remember when I used have a single Xtal in my 2m rig (Pye Ranger), so called on one spot AM frequency and tuned the receiver low to high or vice versa to see if anyone was responding to my call from their one fixed Xtal frequency !!!

This was back in my G8FHU days so Brian will probably remember this procedure as well. Oh happy days.

73 Glyn (the not so old ‘Old Timer’)


#10

Ah, happy days indeed, the good old “geographical” band plans! I started off with one crystal for 70cms, 432.200, I’d call CQ and tune 432 to 434, no reply, move the beam about thirty degrees and call again. It took the better part of an hour to get no reply on all beam headings - you had to WORK for your contacts in those days!

Brian

PS 6 is open to the SE so I’m QSYing to the rig!


#11

Hmm, used a Pye base station (my brothers) with 4, yes 4, crystal frequencies and then tuned around using an AR88D and Microwave modules 28-144 receive convertor. Always assured that someone would hear the AM signal, even if only one of the neighbours TV sets HI.

Ed.


#12

Hi everyone, thanks for the information! I’ll program those repeaters into the HT. I may also bring the HB1B for HF, but haven’t decided yet.

I let the G5 call pass away years ago…some years back (10? 15? 20?) I looked in the call book and there was one G5+3 left, seemed to have a Dutch name.

Yes, I will be M/N6JZT/P. Seems strange to me that “M” has sort of replaced “G”. I felt the same when I was assigned a “N” prefix call rather than a “W” or “K” here in the states back in the 80s, but now I am used to it. I have toyed with the idea of getting a call “WG6AQ” in homage to my old call in the UK.

73, Hal


#13

…I may also bring the HB1B for HF, but haven’t decided yet.

Hi Hal

Honestly speaking, I would bring the HF for Wendover Woods. It will be fun and you will find it easier to qualify the summit in good time.

73 Marc G0AZS, K1UG


#14

Ok, just ordered some hf antenna kit from sotabeams, and a battery from amazonuk. So I will bring the little hb1b and a morse key in the suitcase.I’m sure we have a battery charger in St Albans.


#15

G5 calls are back - or one of them is. After a long campaign G0BBL got his old G5BBL call back in the past year and can be heard using it on 2M


#16

Really? That opens up some interesting “opportunities”! :wink: