Sota FM 4 metre (70 MHz) band, little or no activity

Sota 4 metre (70 MHz band), little or no activity, my equipment is gathering Dust!!! is it to do with Lack of 4M transceivers, propagation, antenna etc, was considering a 4M activation, I am right in thinking would it be a waist of time and energy taking a dedicated 5w transceiver to the trig point?

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If you want 4m SOTA you need to make sufficient noise so that people are prepared. Alerts essential, a thread on here about your plans, gear etc. to wake people up. If you don’t make a noise then nothing will happen.

It’s like the fact there are a few of us who like to try 13cms QSO from summits. It’s highly unlikely you’d make random QSOs call CQ on 2320.200 unless it was contest time or there was a good bit of tropo ongoing so to make QSOs feasible we have a 13cms group on to get the message out to non-SOTA people.

Go rattle some 4m cages with your plans.


A round 4 of us did 4m to do some Wainwright outlying fells a few years ago using a KG-699e 4m h/h Wouxun and worked very well but like andy says you need to to make sufficient noise so that people are prepared.

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I have worked quite a lot of SOTA stations in the Lake District on 4m.
My 4m radio is on most of the day monitoring.
Post an alert is the best thing to do.
David g6lkb

In 9A, I’m the only OP QRV from SOTA on 4m with KG-699E, … thanks to S5 SOTA friends I made also some S2S contacts on 4m band FM.

Some contacts:

In total I logged over 50 QSO as SOTA activatoro on 4m band, … ALERT on Sotawatch helps a lot, … on that way other SOTA activators/chasers can plan the activity.

73 de Boris 9A2GA

Looking at the database figures for 4m, all Associations, for the last full year, 2019, I see that only 39 activators and 48 chasers used the band. This is not exactly a stellar level of activity and the band could probably do with a bit of a shake-up. Perhaps include it as a “flavour” in next years Challenge?

It’s not available in many countries so that might be the reason for it’s low utilization. And a problem for a potential future challenge usage.

This is how I activate on 4m with some success.

Put up a good signal on 2m and 4m FM. 50Watts into a Flowerpot antennas at 4m AGL. Open the squelch so you don’t miss anything. I use a Wouxun KG-UV950PL and a 4S LiPo with a dropper diode.

Put up an SOTAwatch alert for 2m and 4m.

For the activation start the 2m and on almost every 2m QSO say “I will be on 4m later, 70.45 FM” this gets the word out. Even if you have regular followers it gets the message out to those who would not chase you on 2m but are interested in something different. Once I have worked 2m, I then move to 4m. Don’t expect to get signal reports back, the old PMR set don’t have S meters but a QSO is fine.

Generally I stick to the FM calling frequency there is so little traffic it keeps the activity on the most listened to frequency. I will move from the calling frequency if there is other activity. One reason to stick on the calling frequency is there are a lot of old PMR sets that monitor 70.45MHz but it takes the operator some time to locate where the sound is coming from in the shack, they haven’t heard anything for months on 4m. It is a delight to these operators to have a 4m QSO.

The other group of chasers are finding their 4m rig and antenna and getting it into life, so I generally give it a good go even after the first few QSOs to give some time for them setting up. This is why the alert on 2m is important.

You need to be consistent as a 4m activator, if you activate always stick to a pattern and always do both bands. So if you are out and heard on 2m then everyone knows you will always be doing 4m later. This helps to build a following.

Have I had success, in G/ land ? Currently 139 uniques (1 QSO or more) of the 175 summits. There are 79 qualified summits with 4 or more QSOs. So far I have only failed completely on 3 summits, Black Hill G/SP-002 something deafened my Rx the chasers could hear me OK, Rogans Seat G/NP-014 just no luck, Wendover Woods G/CE-005 pouring rain in the woods probably meant the signal was not getting out. Winter Hill G/SP-010 was hard work with the Rx being deafened but some very local chasers made it.

My best DX is 1500km, again on the FM calling channel.

The next planned campaign is G/DC and G/SC in the 1st two weeks of September, assuming there is no lockdown etc.

So 4m is definitely worthwhile and it doesn’t require extraordinary kit, just a bit of effort.

But above all, many thanks to all my chasers without you there would be no QSOs.

73 de

Andrew G4VFL


Well I’ve never used 4m before…until a few minutes ago.

I’ve just had my first ever QSO on 4m, so if Andrew (G4VFL) is reading this, thank you for my first ever 4m contact.

Andrew was on Dunkery Beacon & I was at home in Swindon…a distance of approximately 85-90 miles, which I didn’t think was bad for a hastily thrown together system.

It was quite a difficult copy at my end, so it was the bare minimum exchange necessary for claiming the contact (call signs, signal report, summit reference & that was about it).

I was under the impression that the 4m band was never used, so just haven’t bothered with it until now.

I’ve had an old low-band antenna laying around for years, which I’ve never used (it was still in the plastic packaging).

I noticed on the internet that there are apparently several local nets on 4m, and the RSBG weekly news is also broadcast on 4m from Reading. I decided (probably driven by boredom whilst being on furlough) to throw the antenna up on the roof & reprogram an old Motorola GM350 (commercial PMR radio) onto the ham bands to see if there was any activity.

I left it sat on the calling channel and I almost fell off my chair when it sprung into life…not helped by the fact that I had left the volume turned up REALLY loud!!!

I happened upon Andrew’s activation of Dunkery Beacon by complete chance but I’d always wondered if many people activated on 4m?

Looking on the summit listings, it appears that there have only been 3 previous activations of Dunkery Beacon on 4m, so I guess that activating on 4m it isn’t common?

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I used 4m FM mainly on the G/SP, G/NP and G/LD summits with quite a number of contacts made. I used a KG-699E and a slim Jim at 6m agl. Since I have been activating GM summits I have not taken 4m with me, but that may have been a mistake. Maybe I will take it next time and give it a try.

4m was the saving qso when I activated a Perthshire hill on 13cm and only managed 3 contacts. In desperation I called CQ on 4m and nearly fell over when I received a reply.


I am hoping for 4m Contacts next week on 3 summits (2 SOTA) I plan to activate, I have alerted and hope to get a few calls on 4m FM, I remember a while back when I was more active, that 4m was popular, as most on here have said Wouxun was the popular HH, I did use a 4m PMR mobile on occasions, and also a Garex 4001,with a 1/4 wave dipole. I think nowadays with the ability to self spot, this should help, Good Luck, I will listen for you and hope to hear you

73 Tony

This Sunday, 27th September 2020 is the date for the PW 70MHz contest. There are currently no alerts posted, so is anyone planning to be out on a SOTA for this contest?

73, Stuart