Jun 08

PW 144MHz QRP Contest – Sunday 13th June 2021

As COVID-19 restrictions have relaxed somewhat, the club took part in the Practical Wireless 144MHz QRP Contest this year.

We’ll assembled at the usual spot at the quarry off the summit of the Ettrick “Middle Swire”, between Yarrow and Kirkhope (W of Ettrickbridge).

Note: COVID-19 precautions were taken, and we were well short of the 12-person outdoor limit. All attendees were fully vaccinated.

Warm in the sunshine, but a persistent brisk wind and increasing cloud meant that we had to shelter between the vehicles for ourselves and to protect the mic from wind noise.

It stayed mostly dry with just a spot of drizzle late on, so we were able to operate outside with no interruptions.

We made almost 30 contacts over the day, reaching from Fife down to South Wales, and from the Isle of Man to Yorkshire, including one contact from the summit of Mount Snowdon.

Not quite the lift conditions we’ve experienced on some contest days, so no Irish, continental Europe or south of England.

Spot the not-so-deliberate mistake. Hint: Is that plug not meant to be connected to something? This was when the 10m mast was fully erected and guy ropes all perfectly tightened. More reconfiguration was done at the same time as fixing the error.

(“Not the first time and won’t be the last…”)
George GM1OPO doing a bit of listening on 2m…

…before moving to some HF operation.

Always useful to have a reminder of your callsign and other details in case your mind goes blank when keying the mic.

So much for the hot sunny weather we were forecast. This is the drizzly rain coming over the hills towards us in the afternoon.
Indications of how conditions can vary. We heard the other contact a strong clear signal while he was struggling to copy our details with local noise. Also how easy it is to be distracted with getting a contact that you forget to give the required information.

Despite the slightly disappointing weather, we had a good day out and it was good to meet up with other club members again seeing as our weekly club nights have been suspended since March 2020.

Here’s hoping we have more days out, hopefully with slightly better weather.

Jul 18

CANCELLED: 2020 Rally and Open Day – Sunday 25th October 2020

It is with much regret that the organisers of the annual Galashiels Rally have cancelled the 2020 event. This was due to be held on 25 October. In consideration of our primary responsibilities to the health and welfare of volunteers, traders and visitors we have decided that this cancellation is the right decision. The environment in which the event is held presents unique and very difficult challenges in protecting social distancing, preventing handling of equipment and controlling numbers in a confined area. Arrangements are in hand for returning to the Volunteer Hall on the 24 October 2021 and we look forward to seeing you there.

Jul 18

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

Due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, following general advice from government, weekly Wednesday night club meetings have been suspended as of 18th March 2020. Also the Focus Centre has been closed along with all Live Borders facilities until further notice.

Members can still keep in contact through the GDARS Yahoo Group email or on local FM 2m and 70cm repeaters GB3SB, GB3HK, GB3DU, GB3LB, GB3BT, GB3BE, and DMR/YSF repeaters GB7LS and GB7EY.

The decision was made to cancel the 2020 Rally and Open Day scheduled for 25th October 2020.

Arrangements are being made for the 2021 Open Day on Sunday 24th October 2021.

Oct 20

Rally and Open Day 2019 – Sunday 20th October

The 2019 Open Day and Rally was held on Sunday 20th October 2019.

Another successful rally and open day for us.

Many thanks to the hall staff for setting up the tables, the traders for filling the tables with their stuff, all the club members who came bright and early to help setting up tables, carrying in traders goods, manning the doors and the B&B stall, and finally thanks to all of the visitors who came through the door.

Almost 250 visitors through the door make all the hard work worth it.

Hopefully see you all next year!

Setting up

Video of our open day, taken by delboyonline

Have to mention the random cat that wandered in off the street to have a look at what was going on. Maybe he/she was a licenced ham, MM3EOW, or heard there were mice going free, looking for a CAT cable or maybe just wanting to find out more about the WSKR digital mode!

It didn’t even bother to pay admission!

(More photos to come.)

Traders attended:

Bob McClements
Perth RG
GQRP Scotland
Davy Jackson (Canny Components)
Mick Hunter
Kevin Avery (Late Cancellation)
Michael Willis
Alan Clegg
Dave Bagshaw
Tony Kruszelnicki
Martin Stokes (Mirfield Electronics)
J Dosher
Geoff Darby (Worked All Britain)
Ken Elliott GM4NTX
Peter Bates GM4BYF

Bring and Buy Stall

Hot and cold refreshments

Sep 21

Railways On The Air 2019 – Whitrope Railway Heritage GB0WRH, 20/21 September 2019

On Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st September 2019, club members took part in the Railways On The Air (ROTA) event, operating from the carpark of the Whitrope Heritage Centre south of Hawick.

Report from Dave S GM0KCN:

Quite a slow start contacts wise on Saturday with only 17 QSOs. Mike and Steven did the majority of the logging and Dave H and I did most of the operating.

We all enjoyed the sunny weather and also a wander round Whitrope Station where Border TV were filming for Border Life programme.

Sunday was not good weather wise, lots of heavy showers, however radio
wise were the centre of a pile up again, just like two years ago, with I
think 75 QSOs, so a busy time for the three of us.

We called it a day just after 3pm when conditions were fading. Packed everything away in a break between the rain and were on the road
a little after 4:30pm.

Thanks to those who managed to visit and enjoy the coffee and biscuits
and see the radio station in action.

Big thank you to Dave H for providing the caravaning facilities and
mains power and the radio kit.

Whitrope Heritage Centre, Whitrope, Hawick, Roxburghshire TD9 9TY
Location: 11 miles south of Hawick on B6399.
Maidenhead Locator: IO85PH 00co
55.294320, -2.748944 (55°17’39.6″N 2°44’56.2″W)
NGR: NT 52540 00279
Google: 9C7V77V2+MC