Tuesday, July 7, 2009

VUCC On Indoor Antennas!

Yesterday's mail arrived with the first batch of cards from the ARRL June 2009 VHF Contest. Within them were enough confirmations to put me at 110 confirmed grids on 6 Meters, using (mainly) indoor antennas! So the good news is that it can be done, at least on the Magic Band.

Current grid totals are a little over 200 grids worked, nine countries, and all but two states. (I still need Oregon and Alaska) but not bad for a three element beam in the attic and 100 watts.
A handful (less than 10) of my confirmed grids came from mobile contacts, but each of those grids was also later worked from inside the house. My first Six Meter contest was with K5HCT (Here Comes Texas!) in May of 2008...so it took a little over a year to gather enough confirmations for the award.

On Two Meters, the picture isn't nearly so pretty...only 47 grids worked so far from inside the house. The majority of those coming via meteor scatter using WSJT. No e-skip contacts yet this season, but that could still change.

In hindsight, I should have opted for the rover option sooner. But I really have enjoyed the challenge of earning VUCC using indoor antennas. At this point, I'm switching to more of a compromise approach using rover operations during contests to build the grid counts, and also constructed a "tilt over mast" that will be hidden below my privacy fence during the day, and deployed at night for operation on 6, 2, and 432. This should really help with MS work, and maybe bring EME into the realm of possibility at least on 2 Meters.

I'm "stealing" my design from this web site. It's a wonderful execution of the idea...and I can't wait for the welding to be finished so that I can begin installation.


http://wiki.radioreference.com/index.php/Tilt-Over_Mast

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