During the centenary year of the RSGB there has been a special callsign making its way around the UK and local radio clubs have been getting on the air. In late 2012 the Cheltenham Amateur Radio Association decided to partake in the activity and were offered a 3 day slot on 2/3/4th November 2013.
The activation was ultimately split between two locations, with Martin G4ENZ hosting the station on 2nd and 4th and Stewart G0LGS hosting on 3rd November. As Stewart was planning to be active mostly on SSB with some digital modes from his station that left the CW slots to Derek and I across the two days at the main location.
Of the 1658 QSOs in the log over the 3 days 893 of them were CW on all bands from 160m to 10m and CW operating time split evenly between the two operators and throughout the two days with roughly 10 hours each in the chair. For those that didn’t see the email announcement the following are the approximate times I was in the chair:
|Saturday 2nd: |
0700 – 0959 M0PCB
1800 – 2059 M0PCB
|Monday 4th: |
1600 – 1959 M0PCB
Operating went smoothly, though there were inevitably some teething troubles when changing operators, which involved swapping keys and headphones. The station was equipped with an Elecraft K-line comprising the K3, P3, KPA500 and KAT500 along with a Cushcraft R8 vertical and an 80m Doublet that had been extended to cover 160m. Of note was a very nice opening to the USA on 12m during Monday afternoon with very good signals, and a quick chat with Jean 5T0JL was a pleasant surprise! Among the other DX stations worked were those in CE, CO, ER, FO, KP4, PY, TG, TI, UA0, VP8 (Falklands), VU, XE, YB and ZF giving a total of 51 different DXCC entities. We also worked many G stations who were chasing the G100RSGB awards and were after as many band slots as possible.