RSGB UKAC 6m Contest 27-Jan-15

As part of My Amateur Radio Targets for 2015 I vowed to make more use of the VHF bands, to this end I entered the RSGB UKAC 6m contest yesterday evening. I entered into the AL – Low Power section (limited to 10w) as I like QRP and am a sucker for punishment.

I took part in this contest towards the end of last year and really enjoyed it. I once again went out portable on a cold winters night, with strong wind. The rain held off this time thankfully!

I drove to a nearby hilltop and proceeded to setup the SOTABeams SB6 Moxon on my fishing pole mast. I  strapped it to a nearby farm gate and collapsed the last joint so that I could turn the Moxon by hand leaning out of the drivers side window…

UKAC 6m Moxon

I finally got everything set-up 15 minutes after the contest had started, due to delays in getting to the site. Not the best start! Conditions didn’t seem too good with only English stations heard, mostly in IO91 square. By the end I’d worked 20 stations, mostly through search and pounce. I’d wrongly assumed that as a low power station I couldn’t run a frequency, but I tried this anyway towards the end and it netted me a number of additional contacts. I’ll try and mix it up the tactics for the next UKAC to increase the score.

With 20 QSO’s my claimed score is 14,976 points, with the best DX being M0CGL in JO03BF square at 173km’s. Here’s a map of my QSO’s (the red pin shows my location):

UKAC Contacts Map

 

 

Call Sign Locator Distance (Km’s)
G3MEH IO91QS 8
M0SAT IO91TP 15
G3WIR IO91QN 20
G0PEB/P IO90JO 134
G4CLA IO92JL 96
M1MHZ IO92WV 133
G8CLY IO91UT 20
G8AJM/P IO91PS 13
G0POT/P IO91GI 75
M0ICR IO91SO 16
G8FMC IO91NW 33
G3TBK IO93QA 144
M0CGL JO03BF 173
G4BWP JO02FH 95
G4YPC IO91RH 47
G4YUP/P IO91JA 92
G4CLB IO91RO 14
G4RYV IO91OI 46
G4GFI IO91VH 52
G8LZE IO91SO 16

This was another enjoyable evening dabbling with VHF and it taught me a number of lessons which I will use for the next UKAC I enter…

1. Make sure the mast is well secured before starting – I had a few issues with the wind moving the mast and had to break from the contest to refix it at one stage

2. Use the Elecraft KX3’s Preamp feature to pull out the weaker signals, I had this turned off and struggled with weaker stations as a result

3. Try a mixture of Running & S&P tactics – I spent too much time S&P and my QSO rate suffered as a result

4. Get setup in time before the contest starts!

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