Sunday, September 30, 2012

Azores / Açores - The pileup!

Murphy's law: If anything can go wrong, it will!

I was suppose to go for the weekend at my parents and operate there for this "contest", unfortunately daughter got ill (is alright now) on Friday and a car journey wouldn't do any better, so and since I left the FT-102 and TS-50 at my parents I was reduced to 5 watts on the FT-817 at the main shack.

 In "normal" conditions 5 watts are more than enough for the 900Km that separate the Azores from my QTH.... but 5 watts is no power to break the huge pileup formed for this event, look's like everybody wanted to go for a visit to the Azores island...
Also because of the conditionants I could only operate Saturday from 14H00 to 19H00.

When I got to the shack I discovered that one of the legs of the dipole was broken, looked like the rope supporting it had broke, had to go to the roof and fix, unfortunately was the dipole wire that broke, a quick fix and on to the shack again. After some call's the low power and the dipole orientation weren't doing miracles, in fact weren't doing anything. I switched to a vertical I build some time ago, basically some aluminum tubes and a little of wire as ground counterpoint, problem is this vertical is not permanently outside but was used temporarily outside the shack window.

...don't laugh, this antenna in this conditions allowed me to make already more than 100 different DX entities.

So after 5 hours shouting my call, here's the outcome:

....I have now a lot more respect for the people that just operate QRP... and I have to build an speech processor for the 817.

There was a qso that didn't entered the log or the operator at CU3URA didn't wrote correctly my call, no problem, I'm sure it's not easy to be on the other side of the pileup and at least I confirmed more than the minimum 5 stations.

It was fun even if I didn't managed to work all stations, anyhow I spotted them all, if I was running 100W the story was other.....

Have fun!

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