Friday 23rd July
The Lambourne End Field Weekend was over a three day period 23rd to 25th July. Held at Lambourne End Centre for Outdoor Learning, Lambourne End, and only a mile from our (closed) QTH at All Saints House, a large field was made available for our exclusive use. Amenities included washing, shower and toilet facilities. Setting up started at 3pm with loading up equipment needed for the weekend. Myself, David M0VID and John G0VEH arrived onsite at 15:50. A balmy 24C but slightly overcast; ideal weather to set up.
By 7pm the 80m / 40m trapped dipole was held aloft by the 30ft mast donated by Rex G3NQT, supported each end by our standard masts. The support / catering tent was also erected, complete with two gas hobs and water on tap (electric pump) for refreshments.
Several members stayed overnight and Ron G6LTT + XYL Karen were the first to arrive at 16:20. Brian M0OAB and Boo M6OAB were onsite soon after, followed by Dave M0VID returning with his caravan. Kerry M6WHT and Ion M0JLI also set up early evening, George M1GEO and Chris G8OCV arrived later at 21:00.
Saturday 24th July
Saturday morning brought the rain and thunder. A precursor to a weekend trend. The rain stopped by 09:20. The new Coleman Event shelter, 4.5m x 4.5 m (15′ square in old measurements) was set up; later in the weekend it proved invaluable as a rain shelter rather than protecting us from the sun. Dave M0MBD arrived also with his mobile shack (aka Burger Van) around 10am. This was used with the club’s Icom IC-7300 under the club call for 40m and 80m.
The Coleman shelter had multiple uses. Not just a cover for chairs for members to relax in but also two tables and the essential coffee machine, fridge and microwave (thanks George!).
David M0VID had set up his tri-band 10m / 15m / 20m Cushcraft A3S beam, on top of his 12m Racal mast. Fred G3SVK tested it by rattling off 165 CQ QSOs in 75 minutes for the IOTA contest. The radio used was George M1GEO’s Icom IC-7610 on table one. Fred provided a separate IOTA report :
“I started off in MBD’s burger van using the club’s IC7300 and laptop on 40M CW and the Club’s GB call in the RSGB IOTA contest. After a while I decided to abort that arrangement for several reasons. Firstly, the GB call was far too long for a contest as it causes far too many requests for a callsign repetition and secondly, 40M during the daytime is not a good band for a contest plus Dave’s IC7300 wasn’t really set up using the correct contest log for that contest. I normally use N1MM and load the contest log pertaining to that contest. Then all the fields are correct and when you create a Cabrillo file for submission after the contest, it is in the right format for the adjudicators and the contest robot. If it’s not correct, it gets returned to you.
So, I abandoned the burger van and, as you know, I set up in the large tent using George’s IC7610 and the 3-element beam. Then I was away. I already had the correct contest log loaded on my own laptop and using my own G3SVK call got stuck in. Considering that George’s rig ran about 100W, I thought that did rather well. I stuck to 20M for the most part but did take a brief excursion onto 15M and worked a few stations there. I seemed to have a constant pile-up of callers giving rise to an average of 3 QSOs per minute. The speed at which some contesters were sending was, in some cases, in excess of 40-45 wpm which is why the QSO rate was high. I took a break at 100 QSOs but bashed on till I reached 165 QSOs before packing up to go home. The contest finished at 12.00 UTC on Sunday, so I had a little play at home till late in the evening and then for the last hour or so before the contest ended. I have attached my final score of 460 mainly just using 20M and 40M.
Best DX was BH4 in China. It was useful using the G3 call as each QSO was worth 15 points as England is in Island group EU-005 and you got 15 points for each new Island group worked. The total number of different island groups I worked was 41. Total number of QSOs on 40M was 243 and on 20M, 214 with just 3 on 15M. Total final score was 116,850 points. So, all in all, not too bad although some multi-op, multi-band contestants were running in excess of 2K QSOs.
Fortunately the weather remained dry which was a blessing. Very enjoyable and thanks to the Committee for the opportunity to play radio.”
73s de Fred, G3SVK
Table 2 became the QO-100 station. in use during the day and available for members to try out.
During the day 15 members were on site.
Sunday 25th July
Sunday started as overcast but dry. Day three. A relaxed morning ensued and some members were packing up or getting ready to leave after lunchtime. Selim M0XTA worked a flurry of contacts on the QO-100 station using his own callsign. George M1GEO, with GB2LRS worked stations in France, Finland, Netherlands and South Africa.
The afternoon was more challenging. Heavy rain descended at 13:45 and lasted the afternoon, until 17:10. There’s some photos at the end of this post but they don’t really show the amount of water or the ferocity of its descent. The grass was waterlogged; no one though was stuck and all vehicles were able to leave safely. Packing up started at 15:40 when the rain (mostly) abated. The shelter was extremely useful in providing overhead protection before then.
We left the field at 17:10. 15 members on site during the day. An enjoyable weekend in spite of the rain 🙂
Three Days and / or camping 23-25 July
David M0VID + Pam
Ron G6LTT + Karen
Brian M0OAB and Boo M6OAB
Saturday and Sunday 24-25 July
Saturday 24th only
Sunday 25th only
John Ray G8DZH email@example.com
[photo credits: John G8DZH and John G0VEH]
[Revised 18-Aug-2021 John G8DZH: Additional photos from John G0VEH and Dave M0TAZ added]