This is not a note about the use Frequency Modulation. No it is describes “Failed Miserably”.
The first time I have plodded to a summit and failed to activate. Gutted.

In the past I have:
Forgotten the Morse key
Broken the mike
Crushed the glass fiber support mast
Pulled the wires out of an SMA connector
Broken the headphones
Snapped the aerial wires
Broken the wires to the Morse key.

But the show has gone on. These faults have not prevented an activation, those important 4Q’s

Yesterday during the transit from gm ss143 to gm ss128 in very heavy rain, water found its way into the plastic bags containing the 857. On setting up the station the radio could best be described as “as much use as a boat anchor” DEAD.
I sent a text to say I would not be appearing, descended the hill and bought a bottle of wine.
Pleased to say the rig, having been dried out, has made a full recovery.
As Arnie says “Ill be back!”, I have to.



I’m sorry the WX was a bit humid for you.
I’m glad your 857 is now working.
I’m sorry you didn’t get the points.

However, you may want to come back and activate Broughton Heights SS-128, but I’ve completed that one. So you can skip that and come and do Trahenna SS-143 again so I can complete that ! :grin:

The WX has been a bit poor, but it is June, monsoon season. Better luck next time.

Exped or similar drybags are very good. Also recommend taking a 2m handheld on every activation so there’s always an alternative “station” available should the first-choice set-up be out of action for any reason.


I can confirm that that works. You gave me that advice some years ago, I took it, and since then I haven’t had a single problem with the first-choice set-up!:wink:


Hi Dave,

Given the conditions in which we ask the delicate electronic equipment to work under, it’s amazing that this doesn’t happen far more often. You must have felt very crestfallen about it. I can readily imagine.

Like Tom, I take a basic VHF QRP setup unless I know that the summit is so remote that it’s futile. Great news about the rig. That could have been quite expensive! 73, John.

Last Thursday I returned to Broughton Heights GM/SS-128 with a dry radio in a dry pak, I can now confirm that FM now stands for Finally Managed with 58 QSO’s. WX exactly the same as previously, fog, rain, strong northerly wind and a little snow to add spice. Thanks to patient chasers.

David G0EVV


That sounds like a miserable day.

I got a few nice brand name dry bags for my birthday. The packaging said: “Must not be used as a dry bag” …


David, just one more thing that can go wrong: Forgot the aerial.

Happened to me once. Put assorted provisions and the VHF handheld in my bag, thought the telescopic aerial (that I usually keep together with the handheld rig) would do the job, so took the dipole out of the bag. Arrived on the hill, found that I had left the telescopic aerial at home, too … no QSO on that day … :frowning:

73, Jan-Martin

The most annoying thing I forgot was the cable connecting the radio head to the main body… tiny little part, big impact