QSL card sent to Adrian, VK4OX

The Hepburn propagation chart 

100 Watt 2.4 GHz transvertor. VK5EME TRV with VK5KK driver PA. Feed to to 2 Spectrian 75 Watt PA's combined with W6PQL 13 cm combiners. PA draws 22 amps at 24 volts 

Above 2.4 GHz PA heat sink

Left; weather map across the Tasman sea between ZL and VK 

Above; same dish and setup used on 2.4 GHz. This dish is known as the Wellington VHF group dish and uses a dual band 23 cm and 13 cm loop feed as described recently in DUBUS magazine.  

Above; Moirs Hill, the site used and directions towards VK4OX on 2.4 GHz. Although not shown or seen, there is a sea horizon.      


VK Logger report:

by VK4OX » Thu Jan 27, 2011 9:45 am

Thanks to Adam, VK4CP, for setting up this thread.
This contact was not pre-arranged. I was watching the logger and Steve, ZL1TPH, just posted a comment to say that he was going out to RF73hm and would take 144MHz and 2403MHz gear. He would not have logger access while portable. 144MHz had been open across the Tasman for over 24 hours but I thought it was better yesterday at around 0500utc when I worked ZL1AVZ on 144MHz and heard him on 1296.100 MHz very weakly. No 2 way qso was made on 1296. Today very few zl's were on, so I thought the band was dying.

The recording speaks for itself. ZL1TPH/p was very loud at times on 144.300 but took the occasional dive close to the noise floor. 2403.100 was exceptionally good. Some qsb, but strong peaks.

As ZL1TPH said on the recording, he was running about 80 to 100 watts at the feed of a 1 metre dish. I was running about 20 watts at the feed of a 24dBi Gridpack antenna about 9 metres off the ground. I have a VERY good qth for working across the Tasman.

The qso would not have happened without the logger. The immediacy of the info allowed everything to be set up pretty much on the fly. Alas, I don't have any pictures. All my gear is old technology and my only camera is still a box Brownie. I can't remember when I last bought a roll of film for it! I don't think I can any more.

73, Adrian, VK4OX.

by VK2DVZ » Thu Jan 27, 2011 5:56 pm

Congratulations to both Steve and Adrian - a fantastic result that demonstrates that effort pays off.

Having spotted Steve's Logger posting indicating he was going to go portable, I was awaiting a good result - it turned out to be an historic result indeed - one for the permanent records.

The audio file leaves nothing to the imagination........ thanks Adrian.

Ross, VK2DVZ

by ZL1TPH » Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:21 am

Thanks Adam, VK4CP for placing the audio file on this site, the map and Hepburn pictures etc. As Adrian VK4OX mentioned, I had no logger internet access up at Moirs Hill in RF73HM, but from home before I left to go portable, I placed my intention on the logger before to attract the attention of the VK4’s and Adrian, whom was seen on the logger. The Hepburn and weather maps on the logger were of real value.

Moirs Hill is just north of my home QTH and is around 350 m ABSL. It has nice views to VK although ever slightly obstructed with low ridge line at around 50 km on our west coast towards Australia. In the past I have worked Ross VK2DVZ and Mark VK2AMS, heard VK2ZT on 23 cm. I was slightly unsure of the path direction to VK4 at the time of the 2.4 GHz QSO. My station operation was out of the tailgate of my work station wagon.

My station was modest on 2.4 GHz. A VK5EME transverter, with same preamp from Mark, and his early 2 watt PA, this was driving another 8 Watt Pa, then into two 75 Watt Spectrian power models combined with couplers from W6PQL. Rather than take up my FT817 to use as an IF, I just used the ICOM 202 that is permanently attached to this TRV. Dish was a 1.2 m dish, and this was attached to the tow ball mount, the same mast for the 2 m 8 element Yagi.

With Adrian first hearing me on 2.4 GHz it was rather weak. I marked the dish point with a marker pen, just in case I lost this first reference bearing. My real concern; was my dish pointing in the correct direction. Adrian with his keyer now on 2.4 GHz, I could not hear it at first with RIT adjustment. Then I found it on a QSB peak and so quickly grabbed the rim of the dish, which was next to me and gave it the swing. Towards the north the dish went and VK4OX’s keyer was very LOUD.

Moments like these are never forgotten.

Next was the wait, which seemed like a very long time, with his keyer finally off - in with the call on SSB from me. I never touched my original TX frequency, just used the RIT on the ICOM 202 as it all happened so fast. I was wearing head phones, as I normally do not to miss any words, and with most of my operating with DX I make the contact first and then chat afterwards. The rest of the story is in the entire audio file. The weather that afternoon was extremely hot with no winds whatsoever.

Looking back on the day, I really was not in the mood for loading gear in the work wagon to go up the hill. Having been on the road for near two weeks just before running portable in the far north chasing VK9NA – you say to yourself, “Here we go again, or should I just stay at home and watch the logger.

Two things spurred me along. I could see VK stations sitting on the logger with little if any ZL’s active. Mos well give them a contact on 2 m. Also I worked Brian, ZL1AVZ locally on 2 m and he mentioned that the band was still in good shape. So loaded up the gear, forced myself and headed up to Moirs Hill once again.

I’m glad I did.

Stephen, ZL1TPH

by VK4OX » Fri Jan 28, 2011 7:15 am

The story continues... i got into the shack at 1900utc (5am local) this morning and was surprised to hear ZL1VHF beacon on 144.253 about 529. Spotted that on the logger.Then got an email from Brian, ZL1AVZ, telling me that he would be qrv from Muriwai, RF73fd, in about one hour. At 2100utc, worked ZL1AVZ on 144.300. Nothing flash, about 5-6. We were joined by John, VK4JMC.

Brian got his dish set up for 2403 and between 2130utc to 2140utc we had quite a good 2 way ssb qso on 2403.100. Signals peaked at 5-3 but disappeared in the qsb troughs from time. VK4JMC worked ZL1AVZ on 2403.100 at approx 2147utc. When we went back to 144.300, ZL1AVZ was only 5-5. After these contacts were made,

ZL1AVZ changed the feed on his dish to 1296 and we made a weak but successful 2 way ssb qso there at 2214utc. Signals were better on 2.4GHz than they were on 1.3GHz but there was about 35 minutes between qso's. I have mp3 files for all these contacts.

Having only 6 character Grid squares for both ZL1AVZ and ZL1TPH/p qth's, the distance calculations are not accurate enough. Yesterday's contact with ZL1TPH/p comes out at 2317km using vklogger Distance Calculator.

Today's contact with ZL1AVZ comes out at 2319km, so it is very close. I need more accurate data to establish the correct distances and therefore who is the current record holder.

73, Adrian. VK4OX.


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