Talk – CASHOTA (18/09/2014)

This Thursday, 18th September, we welcome Chris Darlington – M0DOL, to our club. Chris will be speaking to us about the CASHOTA (Castles And Stately Homes On The Air) award scheme and his portable operating techniques and equipment. Chris is heavily involved in the CASHOTA scheme and I am sure many of us will have spoken to him on air whilst he has been operating one of his Special Event Stations.

CASHOTA encourages operators to operate portable from many Castles and Stately Homes here in the UK and abroad, with awards available for both activating and chasing. Locally, Barbury Castle, Liddington Castle (as Hill Forts) and Lydiard Park would all be eligible for activating once permission was gained.

Chris, a Taxi Driver from Northampton, has made a phenomenal amount of world-wide contacts whilst operating /P and he is hoping to drive down in his ‘Radiomobile’ – a vehicle he has kitted out and keeps specially for his portable operations.
Please join us on Thursday 18th September at Pine Trees from 7pm to meet Chris and see what is sure to be an entertaining presentation.

Members Equipment Sale (3rd April 2014)

This week at Pine Trees we will be holding a members equipment sale – a kind of Spring clear out! This is the ideal place to find that Ham Radio bargain or sought-after part for your next project.

Bring along any Amateur Radio related items you wish to sell or just browse & buy what others have for sale.

All welcome. Visitors £1, Tables £3, Refreshments £1 . Members entry & tables – Free. On-site parking available.

The Bletchley Park Story by Ray Goff – G4FON

Bletchley ParkThis week, we will be joined at Pine Trees by Ray Goff, G4FON, who will give us a presentation about Bletchley Park.

Ray’s interest in radio began at the age of 8, building a Crystal set with his cousin whilst staying with him for a weekend. This early interest in radio developed into a lucrative business by his late teens, repairing TVs and Radios in his neighbourhood.

Ray became interested in SWLing and joined the Farnborough DARS in the 1960’s and by 1970, Ray had passed the RAE exam. He was determined to hold out for the 12wpm Morse test and the full licence though and began studying for that. However, during his time at university, he decided to apply for the VHF only B licence and received the call G8HMH.

Ray finally passed the Morse test in November 1976 and gained his now familiar G4FON call and the A class licence.

Many will be familiar with Ray’s excellent Morse training program, which can be downloaded free from his website and Ray’s other interests include Home brewing and QRP operation.

Ray is an official guide at Bletchley Park, so is well qualified to speak about this most fascinating of wartime subjects.

Please join us from 7pm on Thursday 20th March at Pine Trees to meet Ray and hear his presentation, which is sure to be enthralling.

QRP Construction and Operating – Steve Hartley, G0FUW

This week at Pine Trees, we will joined by a person who’s name will be very familiar to anyone who has undertaken Amateur Radio training over the last 20 odd years.

Steve Hartley, G0FUW, came to Amateur Radio from the CB boom of the 1980’s. By 1986, he had passed the 12wpm CW test and gained his now familiar G0FUW call.

Steve has delivered training since 1990 and is the organiser of the succesful ‘Bath Distance Learning Course’. Steve is also the editor of the Intermediate and Advanced training publications, which are such a valuable resource to those taking the associated courses and exams.

Alongside the training courses, Steve also organises the ‘Bath Buildathon’ every January, which encourages Radio Amateurs to try their hand at construction, whilst under supervision. It is also the ideal opportunity for those undertaking Intermediate training to build that all import construction project needed to pass the exam.

Another of Steve’s passions is constructing and operating QRP equipment and it is this subject which forms the basis of Steve’s presentation to us on Thursday evening.

So please join us at Pine Trees from 7pm on Thursday 20th February for what is sure to be a very interesting and informative talk.

PAT Testing and the Pitfalls

This week’s speaker at the club needs no introduction, being our very own Dennis Goacher, G3LLZ. I am sure we are all aware of Dennis’ vast, in-depth knowledge in the world of electronics and his willingness to offer help and advice when asked.

Dennis has kindly agreed to share some of his knowledge with us this week on the subject of PAT (Portable Appliance Testing) and the pitfalls associated with it. This is a subject most of us would have heard of through our work, but perhaps know little about. Dennis will no doubt deliver an excellent presentation on this subject, perhaps with a few horror stories from some of the more dubious appliances he has encountered during his career.

Please join us at Pine Trees on Thursday 23rd January from 7pm to listen to what is sure to be a very informative talk.

QRT 500 kc/s wireless telegraphy 1901-1997: The final WT transmissions from UK Coast Stations

This week at the club we will be showing a DVD entitled ‘QRT 500 kc/s wireless telegraphy 1901-1997: The final WT transmissions from UK Coast Stations’. This DVD covers the final transmissions made by the maritime radio stations at Portpatrick, Wick, Cullercoats and Lands End on 31 December 1997 23:48 GMT after many years of service to shipping.

The DVD gives a brief history of the development of the maritime distress and communications service on 500 kc/s which is followed by live recordings made at the time from the 4 stations mentioned above. The live recordings are entirely in Morse Code and a transcript of these messages will be provided for those not proficient in Morse to follow during the DVD.

Please join us at Pine Trees from 7pm on Thursday 9th January to watch the DVD.

You can buy this DVD from Great Britain Online

SDARC Fun Quiz Thursday 19th December 2013

The annual Fun Quiz will be held at the SDARC clubroom at the Pine Trees Community Centre, The Circle, Pinehurst, Swindon on Thursday 19th December.

In addition to the usual tea and coffee, there will be free mince pies. In this Quiz, the members form small teams to enter the quiz and give a team answer to a question. So, even if you do not know the answer to a question, hopefully, somebody else in your team will know the answer. There will be rounds of both amateur radio and general knowledge questions.

No access to the Internet will be allowed and the questionmaster’s decision on each answer will be final!

Talk: Magloop Antennas by Tom Brockman, G4TPH

This week’s speaker is Tom Brockman, G4TPH, who will be talking to us about the development of his Magloop Antennas.

Tom was first licenced in 1959, gaining the call KN8VST at the age of 14. After passing the Technician course, he held the call K8VST until service with the USAF interrupted his activities.

Since moving to the UK, Tom has also held the B class call G5MVT, before passing the Morse test in 1981 and gaining the call G4TPH.

Please join us at Pinetrees from 7pm on Thursday 21st November, to see Tom’s presentation and find out more about these remarkable antennas.

DXpedition Antennas by Don Field, G3XTT

This week we will be joined by Don Field, G3XTT, who will be talking to us on the subject of DXpedition Antennas.

Don has been involved in Amateur Radio since passing his exam in 1968. He is the author of several books, namely the RSGB Operating Manual and the 6 and 4 metre Handbook.

He has also particated in a number of major DXpeditions, such as T32C, 3B7C and D68C to name a few and been involved with several RSGB comittees over the years.

Don has been the HF columnist for RADCOM for 15 years and has recently taken on the role of editor for Practical Wireless magazine.

With his vast experience in the world of Amateur Radio, this is sure to be an unmissable evening, so please join us from 7pm on Thursday 7th November to see Don’s presentation.

Every Thursday at the Pine Trees Community Centre, Pinehurst Circle, Swindon, SN2 1RF!