IARU HF Championship 2005

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9-10th July 2005, near Dunmow, Essex.

In 2005 I joined Chris G3SVL and Dave G3UEG at the 160m SSB station of GB5HQ.

Also during the contest Andy G4KNO operated from home using his own, and the club callsigns M0CAM and M4R. He managed to work GB5HQ on 7 of the 12 possible band-mode slots.

We worked 408 stations on 160m SSB. Antennas were an Inverted-V with centre at 75 ft, ends at 30ft fed by open wire feeder and a K9AY loop. For spotting we used a C3SS at 25ft and the Spotting Receiver Remote Filter.

The radios were a FT1000MP with ACOM 2000 amp and Linear Amp balanced tuner. The spotting receiver was an FT1000 MkV.

For logging we used two laptops connected to StarLog server via ISDN. The screen layouts were optimised for 'Run' and 'Spot'. We also used, to great effect, an audio switching box built by Dave, G3UEG. This allowed the spot operator to listen to RUN, RUN sub or Spot rx audio and to have them as mono or as a different source in each ear. This was used to have two pairs of ears on the frequency to help copy the weaker calling stations from the noise.

More details are available on the official website at http://www.gb5hq.com

Here are some of Chris's soapbox comments.

Teamwork - not just the three of us but the whole set-up, you felt like 
they were all in the shack with you.

Exceeding last year's 160m SSB total (single op from SVL home QTH) by 27% 
- indeed just met last year's Platinum target. 

Cooperation with Jan, G0IVZ (160m CW station) 

Passing of 'needed' and 'mults' worked really well (as G0TSM noted on the 
contest reflector!) All systems worked faultlessly - including the link to
the StarLog server.

StarLog (once we were a few hours in). Pop-ups for Talk and Announce were 
brilliant and the ability to customise the display for each operator saves
all that discussion, moaning and compromise! Still suspect we only 
scratched the surface of its facilities.

John G3WGV's virtual presence throughout the contest was reassuring. 
Banter on the Announce messages - helped us realise that our problem with 
midges and moths was nothing compared to those North of the Border! 

So many weak and watery signals during daylight hours - we really tried 
but as a  number have already noted it is very much a case of geography 
and differential systems (Dave took down his 108ft vertical and put up 
an inverted V to be more suitable for inter-G working - so the problem
was probably choice of rx antennas, site noise, propagation or a 
combination of all three). Interestingly we could work Jan (160CW)
at any time in daylight - a 240mile path.

Click on a thumbnail below to see a larger picture.

Dave G3UEG

Chris G3SVL & Dave G3UEG, old friends, building the score

Mark G4AXX on the Run station

The Inverted-V fed with open wire feeder

The C3SS at 25ft

The K9AY receiving loop

The spotting rx vertical

Chris tidying up

Dave preparing to lower the 75ft mast

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