Almost certainly. I’d say there is a 99% chance the rig front end is being overloaded. You need a band-pass filter like the Sotabeams one. See many other threads on the reflector about similar problems.
I know you didn’t get the 8 points… but it’s not a failed activation. You got three contacts, just one is enough for a valid activation.
I obviously like to get 4 and get the points, but I’ve got several valid activations with 3, 2 or even just 1 contact. I’m happy with that.
I was happy I made it to the summit given the time I had but would have preferred (as we all would) to have qualified the summit.
Next time it will be mine!!!
You’ve seen mine from Shining Tor, I’ll have to try and rig something up on Cyrn y Brain to test it against a known better radio, and maybe against a UV-5R
My UV-5R was the first radio I used to activate my first summit - Great Orme.
I contested from there for years winning all sorts of low power 2m contests. In those days it was benign on 2m and 70cms for the large part. That was when the BT Type 8 tower was covered in big and small dishes and there was lots more PMR stuff up there. The BT Tower is almost completely denuded of dishes now, the 4,7,11 GHZ stuff long gone and replaced with fibre. I was in the Ponderosa car park last month and there seemed to be fewer towers but it could have been the angle and I was more interested in the classic lorry convoy there. Lots of big 2-stroke diesels and 50s/60s/70s British vehicles you don’t see any more.
Anyway we could run 80s/90s style radios on QRP setups with no issues. IC-290 on 2m with a preamp on FM/SSB. FT-780 on 70cms on FM/SSB. Also more serious FT-736 with preamps and big amps on 2/70/23. The only problem we had was the 70cms preamp used with 736 didn’t like the large amount of Band II FM from the BBC mast (22kW per channel). We needed a coax stub filter made from RG58 on the input of the preamp to keep the Radio 3 broadcast signal out. It mixed and multiplied to cause havoc on 432.200. At that time I had an FT-470 dual band handy which was pants on 2m with anything other than its rubber duck (and it was fairly pants then!) and it too would work on 2m on its duck from there as well. It was a “clean” site for amateur radio.
Later on I’ve been there with an FT-290 MK1 which was immune to everything there and my VX-170 which was also immune until my last activation (2010?) when there was some clicking and occasional marginal desense with the VX-170 and a ribbon cable J-Pole. The VX-170 is normally fine on even the worst summits and it still worked last time there but you would hear someone drop an S-point when whatever on the towers kicked off.
So it will be interesting to see if it’s now a clean site again or if there is still something causing problems. I did think about activating it last month but I’ve done it for SOTA twice and I’ve done it for contests about 100 times so I did Moel-y-Gamelin instead which was a belting 2m activation which I should write up.
Whereabouts did you live on the Wirral, Andy? I live in Oxton Birkenhead. I also know Brian ZRP, he often chases me when on the Welsh hills. I think,possibly like John VAZ, he’s in the Wirral D & A club, I’m in the other one, Wirral ARS. 73 John
I used to live in Upton, John. He was in the WARS for a long time but I’m not so sure now.
Good stuff, Andy. Yes, I first met Brian when he was in WARS, but he hasn’t been a member for many years.
Talking of Cyrn y Brain, I’ve activated it this year & last without problems using my old Kenwood handy, a few years ago I did get some blocking. Perhaps use of the 2 masts has changed.
I am Moreton and in the Chester DARS club same as ZRP. (not in the Wirral clubs)
Ah, sorry John, my error…
I can confirm at least one has gone, about 10 years ago I think. A mountain rescue repeater had to close down when the mast was dismantled. Cost on the remaining mast(s) we could have moved to was too high.
It looks like the third mast was there in 2012: A Welsh man walking.: #4.CYRN-Y-BRAIN.16-1-12. , http://tomread.co.uk/cyrn-y-brain_2012.htm but I don’t ever recall seeing it!
Seems to have gone by 2014: Cyrn-y-Brain 2014
I guess that’s what the fenced off patch of land in the “dip” relates to? At least they left a handy fence for attaching antennas to.
There in September 2010
L-R BT link tower (no 7/11GHz any more), Arqiva mast (BBC Band II FM, old cellphone aerials, much PMR), passive microwave repeater and finally the PMR mast which has gone. ISTR it belonged to Dee Communications.
The microwave repeater consists of two dishes pointing at the 2 targets and some waveguide strung between them… no electronics in use.
Close up pictures, no PMR tower in 2013 but DAB added to the BBC stuff.
ISTR it belonged to Dee Communications.
I wasn’t directly involved. But that now fits in logically. Dee Communications are a local firm who will support MR… whereas Arquiva want top commercial rates even for our charity access. The sums are eye watering and out of our reach… way out of our reach.
I’ve failed to activate and get the points too with only two contacts. Weird stuff was happening, I suspect down to local interference. It was heavy drizzle, which might have had an impact too.
There was some misting in the distance while I was up there. Rolled in even more towards the end.
Just means I need another go next time I am over there but with another radio.