2015 NA SSB Sprint

Remember my prior post on this? 2015 NA SSB Sprint ?? Well, today in the email, I received a note from the contest organizer that I had won 1st place for low power in my section. Well, I thought, that’s great … then I remembered the contest and how difficult it was.

There was only three entries for VE4-land, one was high power and two were low power — both the other Dan and I had low scores as we both run modest station setups.

So, I was kinda surprised to hear I had placed.  Although I was not too impressed with my score vs my submitted score .. I lost 6 contacts from errors somehow .. oh well … seems the conditions were not that good after all 🙂 🙁  Also not sure what happened with the team submission – I do log as RadMan 🙂

Scores for this little one
Scores for this little one

Will see how it goes — I’d like to continue with it — but I need better setup.

73, Dan ve4drk

VA4WAN planning …

So, it’s been summer and everyone has lots on their mind (beyond working on radios all the time) — so it’s been a while since we’ve worked on some of the core features of the system, so it was time to have a meeting of the minds to go over what we have to do and how to get it done and etc etc …

Having a long list to go through, it only took 2.5 hrs to review, discuss, hash-out etc to ensure we have a priority list of items to get taken care of.  Naturally, there was the meeting after the meeting to discuss other stuff … I stayed behind and Derek treated to scotch while we chatted, along with William.  Colin had to run right around 9 — but it was great to get the guys into a room to figure out what where we need to go and do to keep momentum moving on the projects.

Sites, bands, routing, access, servers, collaboration server and the like were all discussed.  So, a good meeting was had to ensure we keep this moving.

73, Dan, ve4drk

NAQP & new capacitance hat!

Well — I did try out the NAQP SSB this weekend — the bands were terrible … looking at the solarham site, it did show RED … solar winds were well over 400 and the conditions did show that … the only band that was partly open was 20m .. 15 and above really didn’t exist .. 40 was ok later in the evening .. i put in about 5 hours .. and i only made about 50+ contacts .. I will submit my logs to assist those that need them.

I even had a couple of thanks for the “rare ve4” section being in the contest!

Funny though — the only ve4 I heard was Ed VE4YU – he was S&P so I couldn’t work him.  I made a ve7 and a ve3 contact and that’s about it for the CDN side of things – the rest were US based contacts.

But — my antenna may be better now that it has a better looking capacitance hat on it ! 🙂   My XYL calls them lemon-drops!

73, Dan ve4drk


Local Antenna policy

Industry Canada administers the spectrum in Canada as well as it’s licensing and restrictions on various apparatus.

Recently, a group of municipalities had their get-together and one topic was the consultation process that Industry Canada wants the municipalities to provide clear guidance on what is locally acceptable.  Naturally, IC will have final say, but this guidance holds weight and will be just that – a guide —

For us hams, there is only one small paragraph which is applicable … and it is:


So, keep it in the back, don’t intrude on your neighbour, don’t make it go ‘blink’, and keep it under 70′.  Well, that is not too bad .. 70′ is reasonable within the city limits and does a decent job for most hams.

Actual reference:

City of Winnipeg Antenna Systems Policy

Industry Canada Amateur Radio Publications

73, Dan ve4drk

Antenna changes

I’ve been puttin’ this off for a bit .. getting my 2.3GHz high speed network connection functional.  I finally took down the alpha-delta fan dipole and the g5rv and the mount is down from the house.

New mount was fun to get up .. barely .. now I’m tired and have to put the fan dipole on the mount pole to have it erected on the mount on the house … that will have to be day 2. … maybe tomorrow … maybe not – depending how I feel.  Climbing ladders up and down just isn’t my cup of tea anymore.

So, when I mount this antenna up and give it a go, should be much better being much higher in the air 🙂  here’s hoping.

73, Dan ve4drk

Winnipeg Digital Repeater Group AGM

Wednesday July 29, a number of us met at the Sals on Leila to hold the annual general meeting of the Winnipeg Digital Repeater Group.

Quite a number turned out for this AGM.  There was no topic per se, but a review of last year’s notes and new business was quick and that was it.

There are 2 newbies on the exec – Derek VE4HAY is the new vice president, and Dan VE4DRK (that’s me) is the new membership chair.

This will be a good tenure to take for a year or so — help out a bit as I also currently handle the MRS memberships as well.

Also of note – the WDR group is also now merged up with the HSMM digital group – which is great, as we have similar interests and uses.

Here’s to a good year ahead!

73, Dan ve4drk

New *short* contest (really short!)

A month or so ago, I received an email from a contest organizer indicating a new type of short contest is being setup on a trial basis.  Now, when I say “short”, I mean “short”!   How’s 30 minutes one evening during the week?!  Yup — for the month of August, on Tuesdays at 9:30pm (CDT) for 30 minutes, we run like NAQP and work stations with 100 watts.  Now, that is more my style, considering that’s all the power I have to run with — so it’s a semi-level playing field.

So, I don’t get into it right away, as I forgot about it and only worked about 15 or so minutes of the contest.  But, I did S&P and run for a bit – but given it’s so short, it’s hard to do much searching the bands — one would run out of time!  So, I stuck mostly to 20m and 40m and did try 80 and 160, but did not hear much on those bands.

So, all in all, a mere 7 contacts with 7 mults gives me a whopping score of 49!  woo hoo LOL …

Anyways, I had not been that active in the past while, so running a short contest was a good thing to try it out.

Will have to try again and see how many more show up …

73, Dan ve4drk