Date   

Re: The Ross DX Challenge

robert ross
 

Jorge……I am not sure how many of them were issued. Gary DeBock may be able to answer that question.

73…ROB VA3SW



On Nov 11, 2020, at 10:52, Jorge Garzón via groups.io <iberiaDX@...> wrote:

Hi Robert,
Pleased to e-meet you. I have already see Award nr 1 (yours) and nr 2 (the one got by Paul Logan). How many of them were issued in the past?

73!

Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL) 
QTH: IN83ag / 43º15' N · 03º56' W
Urb. San Roque 95, casa 5 (Villasevil)
39698 Santiurde de Toranzo (ESPAÑA - SPAIN)
..................................................................................
Blog: IberiaDX  · Twitter: @IberiaDX


En miércoles, 11 de noviembre de 2020 16:32:54 CET, robert ross <va3sw@...> escribió:


Hi Guys:

   Glad to see the Ross DX Challenge that  John Bryant named after me being resurrected by a few Ultralight DXers! That’s what really kick started my ULR DXing Career back in 2008. Good luck to all that attempt to meet the Challenge and Log 300 Stations in 30 Days! Here’s a copy of the very First Ross Challenge DX Award that was issued to me in 2008 at when ULR DXing was still in it’s infancy!

73…ROB VA3SW

Robert Ross
London, Ontario CANADA
<ULR-Ross DX Challenge 30 Day Award  Barefoot.jpg>
_._,_._,_


Re: The Ross DX Challenge

Jorge Garzón
 

Hi Robert,
Pleased to e-meet you. I have already see Award nr 1 (yours) and nr 2 (the one got by Paul Logan). How many of them were issued in the past?

73!

Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL) 
QTH: IN83ag / 43º15' N · 03º56' W
Urb. San Roque 95, casa 5 (Villasevil)
39698 Santiurde de Toranzo (ESPAÑA - SPAIN)
..................................................................................
Blog: IberiaDX  · Twitter: @IberiaDX


En miércoles, 11 de noviembre de 2020 16:32:54 CET, robert ross <va3sw@...> escribió:


Hi Guys:

   Glad to see the Ross DX Challenge that  John Bryant named after me being resurrected by a few Ultralight DXers! That’s what really kick started my ULR DXing Career back in 2008. Good luck to all that attempt to meet the Challenge and Log 300 Stations in 30 Days! Here’s a copy of the very First Ross Challenge DX Award that was issued to me in 2008 at when ULR DXing was still in it’s infancy!

73…ROB VA3SW

Robert Ross
London, Ontario CANADA


Re: The Ross DX Challenge

robert ross
 

Hi Guys:

   Glad to see the Ross DX Challenge that  John Bryant named after me being resurrected by a few Ultralight DXers! That’s what really kick started my ULR DXing Career back in 2008. Good luck to all that attempt to meet the Challenge and Log 300 Stations in 30 Days! Here’s a copy of the very First Ross Challenge DX Award that was issued to me in 2008 at when ULR DXing was still in it’s infancy!

73…ROB VA3SW

Robert Ross
London, Ontario CANADA


The Ross DX Challenge

Jorge Garzón
 

Hi,
Paul Logan and me were 'twittering" yesterday and talking about the choice to repeat the '300 MW stations heard over 30 days' which is the main rule (not the only one) to get the mentioned award. Paul, that got it in 2008 said that this is a much more difficult challenge today that on 2008 due to several MW EU stations now dismantled or non operatives.

So, talking and talking we decided to start the Challenge again from yesterday 10th November at 16:30z to 10th December, finishing at the same UTC time. Our local sunset is around 17:30 CEST (UTC+1).

We have been spreading the idea in Twitter and some national radio forums and we found another Spanish folk that will take part on it from today/tomorrow. On Twitter we will use the tag #UltralightDX to easily tracking the posts and results. We've also opened profiles on FMLIST for our loggins.

I am also posting my progress on a daily basis (in Spanish thus I promote the Ultralight side of the hobby in Spain and for Spanish speakers abroad) here: https://iberiadx.wordpress.com/the-ultralight-dx-challenge-2020/

It's fun and rewarding indeed! This morning I've recorded Radio Nacional de Paraguay on 920 kHz just on the barefoot of my DEGEN. More than 9.000 km away from IN83AG, the grid from where I am listening. A new distance record for me operating with this light or ultralight portables and no external aids at all.

¡Buen DX!

Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL) 
QTH: IN83ag / 43º15' N · 03º56' W
Urb. San Roque 95, casa 5 (Villasevil)
39698 Santiurde de Toranzo (ESPAÑA - SPAIN)
..................................................................................
Blog: IberiaDX  · Twitter: @IberiaDX


Re: Awards Program

Jorge Garzón
 

Thank you Gary and the rest for your trust. I would like to ensure the original spirit of the awards and service good to the group. PSE, feel free to use my personal address to send wherever you think I need to execute this task conveniently.
73! 

Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL) 
QTH: IN83ag / 43º15' N · 03º56' W
Urb. San Roque 95, casa 5 (Villasevil)
39698 Santiurde de Toranzo (ESPAÑA - SPAIN)
..................................................................................
Blog: IberiaDX  · Twitter: @IberiaDX


En miércoles, 11 de noviembre de 2020 2:02:50 CET, Paul Blundell <tanger32au@...> escribió:


That is great news, I am glad we have been able to find a solution.

Paul

On Wed, Nov 11, 2020 at 9:39 AM Gary DeBock via groups.io <D1028Gary=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:
<<<   Hi Gary and the rest of the group. 
I have read the lack of volunteers for the award program. I would like to share with you my goodwill to help if you decide to re-start the program. I am used to Photoshop environment and I have enough time to help without compromising my radio listening sessions, more now that we have re-structured our working schedules due to COVID-19. 
I have colaborated as editor with DX bulletins and even I helped RNE in Sevilla as a QSL manager just for a better developping of radio and DXing culture. I also sometimes design QSL cards for free radio stations (I include one of the QSL that I designed for Radio Merlin Int this past springtime, designed entirely with Adobe Photoshop). 
73!
Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL)    >>>

Dear Jorge,

Thank you very much for your generous offer to volunteer your services to prepare the Ultralight Radio Award Certificates. Because of your Adobe Photoshop experience and extensive hobby knowledge you certainly are uniquely qualified for administration of the program! Thank you also for posting the sample artwork in the QSL photo, which is very creative and beautiful.

The Ultralight Radio Award Certificates were originally designed by our co-founder John Bryant, who chose some beautiful artwork with classic radio themes. He administered the program until he had an unfortunate accident in 2011, after which I volunteered to take on his duties. Since I was pretty busy at the time it was tough to satisfy the demand for the certificates, which is why the program has been inactive for the past few years. As such, your offer to volunteer your services is very much appreciated. On the other hand, if at any time you feel that the program requires too much of your time and effort, you certainly are welcome to resign your services.

I plan to send you some of the Master Certificate samples in the next few days, which you are welcome to improve or modify at your preference. We can discuss some of the awards that will be offered, as well as the requirements for submission. Thank you again very much for your generous offer!

73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
Ultralight Radio Group Co-Founder


 

  



--
Paul


Re: Awards Program

Paul Blundell
 

That is great news, I am glad we have been able to find a solution.

Paul

On Wed, Nov 11, 2020 at 9:39 AM Gary DeBock via groups.io <D1028Gary=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:
<<<   Hi Gary and the rest of the group. 
I have read the lack of volunteers for the award program. I would like to share with you my goodwill to help if you decide to re-start the program. I am used to Photoshop environment and I have enough time to help without compromising my radio listening sessions, more now that we have re-structured our working schedules due to COVID-19. 
I have colaborated as editor with DX bulletins and even I helped RNE in Sevilla as a QSL manager just for a better developping of radio and DXing culture. I also sometimes design QSL cards for free radio stations (I include one of the QSL that I designed for Radio Merlin Int this past springtime, designed entirely with Adobe Photoshop). 
73!
Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL)    >>>

Dear Jorge,

Thank you very much for your generous offer to volunteer your services to prepare the Ultralight Radio Award Certificates. Because of your Adobe Photoshop experience and extensive hobby knowledge you certainly are uniquely qualified for administration of the program! Thank you also for posting the sample artwork in the QSL photo, which is very creative and beautiful.

The Ultralight Radio Award Certificates were originally designed by our co-founder John Bryant, who chose some beautiful artwork with classic radio themes. He administered the program until he had an unfortunate accident in 2011, after which I volunteered to take on his duties. Since I was pretty busy at the time it was tough to satisfy the demand for the certificates, which is why the program has been inactive for the past few years. As such, your offer to volunteer your services is very much appreciated. On the other hand, if at any time you feel that the program requires too much of your time and effort, you certainly are welcome to resign your services.

I plan to send you some of the Master Certificate samples in the next few days, which you are welcome to improve or modify at your preference. We can discuss some of the awards that will be offered, as well as the requirements for submission. Thank you again very much for your generous offer!

73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
Ultralight Radio Group Co-Founder


 

  



--
Paul


Re: Awards Program

Gary DeBock
 

<<<   Hi Gary and the rest of the group. 
I have read the lack of volunteers for the award program. I would like to share with you my goodwill to help if you decide to re-start the program. I am used to Photoshop environment and I have enough time to help without compromising my radio listening sessions, more now that we have re-structured our working schedules due to COVID-19. 
I have colaborated as editor with DX bulletins and even I helped RNE in Sevilla as a QSL manager just for a better developping of radio and DXing culture. I also sometimes design QSL cards for free radio stations (I include one of the QSL that I designed for Radio Merlin Int this past springtime, designed entirely with Adobe Photoshop). 
73!
Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL)    >>>

Dear Jorge,

Thank you very much for your generous offer to volunteer your services to prepare the Ultralight Radio Award Certificates. Because of your Adobe Photoshop experience and extensive hobby knowledge you certainly are uniquely qualified for administration of the program! Thank you also for posting the sample artwork in the QSL photo, which is very creative and beautiful.

The Ultralight Radio Award Certificates were originally designed by our co-founder John Bryant, who chose some beautiful artwork with classic radio themes. He administered the program until he had an unfortunate accident in 2011, after which I volunteered to take on his duties. Since I was pretty busy at the time it was tough to satisfy the demand for the certificates, which is why the program has been inactive for the past few years. As such, your offer to volunteer your services is very much appreciated. On the other hand, if at any time you feel that the program requires too much of your time and effort, you certainly are welcome to resign your services.

I plan to send you some of the Master Certificate samples in the next few days, which you are welcome to improve or modify at your preference. We can discuss some of the awards that will be offered, as well as the requirements for submission. Thank you again very much for your generous offer!

73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
Ultralight Radio Group Co-Founder


 

  


Re: Digitech AR1458 AM FM transistor radio

Paul Blundell
 

That is about the only thing I don't like, manual tuning. Still for the price I might get one and see how I go with it.


On Tue, Nov 10, 2020 at 10:28 PM Dan Merta <dnmerta0@...> wrote:
I'm currently in Melb listening to 2RN 576Khz Sydney on it. It's picking up most of the interstate ABC stations quite well. 
Tuning is a bit of a challenge, But it's fun.  



--
Paul


Re: Long Term DX Project - 8/11/2020

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks Dan. I have found that 3GG is a good reference station as to the band conditions across to the main land.


On Tue, Nov 10, 2020 at 10:07 PM Dan Merta <dnmerta0@...> wrote:
Hi Paul. Interesting about the fading on 531 3GG. At my location the daytime signal strength varies from about 14db to 18 db but it's not enough to be audible. 
At night the signal degrades to such an extent as to be listenable. Battling with 2PM from Kempsey.    



--
Paul


Re: Digitech AR1458 AM FM transistor radio

Dan Merta
 

I'm currently in Melb listening to 2RN 576Khz Sydney on it. It's picking up most of the interstate ABC stations quite well. 
Tuning is a bit of a challenge, But it's fun.  


Re: Long Term DX Project - 8/11/2020

Dan Merta
 

Hi Paul. Interesting about the fading on 531 3GG. At my location the daytime signal strength varies from about 14db to 18 db but it's not enough to be audible. 
At night the signal degrades to such an extent as to be listenable. Battling with 2PM from Kempsey.    


Re: Digitech AR1458 AM FM transistor radio

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks Dan. That is a good video. This is not a radio I have ever looked at much.


On Tue., 10 Nov. 2020, 21:43 Dan Merta, <dnmerta0@...> wrote:
Here's a review video of a very small radio the AR1458 transistor radio. 
At $16.95 from Jaycar in Australia it's good value. I have one & it has good performance on AM. 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IKYFmubMQHA


Digitech AR1458 AM FM transistor radio

Dan Merta
 

Here's a review video of a very small radio the AR1458 transistor radio. 
At $16.95 from Jaycar in Australia it's good value. I have one & it has good performance on AM. 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IKYFmubMQHA


Re: Awards Program

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks for your email and the offer. Maybe it would be a good chance to look at what awards we offer and how they align with the hobby at the same time.


On Tue., 10 Nov. 2020, 21:03 Jorge Garzón via groups.io, <iberiaDX=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
Hi Gary and the rest of the group. 
I have read the lack of volunteers for the award program. I would like to share with you my goodwill to help if you decide to re-start the program. I am used to Photoshop environment and I have enough time to help without compromising my radio listening sessions, more now that we have re-structured our working schedules due to COVID-19. 

I have colaborated as editor with DX bulletins and even I helped RNE in Sevilla as a QSL manager just for a better developping of radio and DXing culture. I also sometimes design QSL cards for free radio stations (I include one of the QSL that I designed for Radio Merlin Int this past springtime, designed entirely with Adobe Photoshop). 

73!

Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL) 
QTH: IN83ag / 43º15' N · 03º56' W
Urb. San Roque 95, casa 5 (Villasevil)
39698 Santiurde de Toranzo (ESPAÑA - SPAIN)
..................................................................................
Blog: IberiaDX  · Twitter: @IberiaDX


En martes, 10 de noviembre de 2020 04:43:41 CET, Gary DeBock via groups.io <d1028gary=aol.com@groups.io> escribió:


On Mon, Nov 9, 2020 at 02:47 PM, Paul Blundell wrote:
How much work would it involve? I am happy to help out with it. Do we need to look at "revamping" them a bit?
 
Paul
Paul,

The administration and preparation of the Award Certificates would require skill in Adobe photoshop software, since new certificates are made by altering previously awarded certificates (and master samples). In addition, a serious donation of time and effort would be involved, since multiple applications can be received at any time, the processing of which could seriously impact your DXing time (and other activities). It is not unusual to have a backlog of 15 or 20 certificates waiting to be prepared, with the applicants wondering why they have not yet received them (and sending emails to that effect). It is for these reasons that I reluctantly decided to stop taking these applications about 4 years ago, due to a lack of free hobby time.

Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)


 


Re: Planning a Portable Ultralight radio DXing Session – November 2020

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks for the reply.

This is the case I currently use. I mostly carry it by itself but do also put it in my backpack at times.

On Tue., 10 Nov. 2020, 20:39 Jorge Garzón via groups.io, <iberiaDX=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
Thanks for this blog entry, Paul. I love to combine radio and walking and often I visit not crowded spots where the only living beings that I found are wild animals, cattle, shepherds or just casual walkers. I also carry my stuff in a rucksack. 

But, do you carry that yellow hard case in your backpack? It seems big and heavy, isn't it? 

I also chose selected spots in the wild where I can park safely and then carry my 'heavy stuff' which includes a folding camping chair, a small table a solid  tripod foot and a telescopic fishing rod to help with antennae. 

Some of these pictures are shown in my blog here: https://iberiadx.wordpress.com/ where last night I posted a reflection on the DXing hobby related to DXing at live and SDR (in Spanish, but easy to translate with Google translator) 

¡Saludos! 

Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL) 
QTH: IN83ag / 43º15' N · 03º56' W
Urb. San Roque 95, casa 5 (Villasevil)
39698 Santiurde de Toranzo (ESPAÑA - SPAIN)
..................................................................................
Blog: IberiaDX  · Twitter: @IberiaDX


En martes, 10 de noviembre de 2020 04:25:52 CET, Paul Blundell <tanger32au@...> escribió:


Planning a Portable Ultralight radio DXing Session – November 2020

 

 

 

 

For some people this could be as easy as grabbing a radio as you head out the door; I have found that some more planning is required to get the most from my portable Ultralight radio DXing sessions. This is especially important now with COVID-19 restrictions in some areas and changes due to this. I am now making a point of keeping a good distance away from people and limiting how much time I am out and about in public. I am now focusing on more remote / less used areas. For those in areas with current COVID-19 restrictions, it is vital that all rules and guidelines are followed. Local health advice must be the overriding decider on what you are able to do. 

When I am planning a portable Ultralight radio DXing session, my first step is to arrange a suitable day and time. I am happily married and as we have a couple of young children, ensuring the domestic front is happy goes a long way to ensuring I can have a good time. I like to try and arrange my outings around times when my wife won't be home or is busy; this makes it easier to be away from home. Only you know your own domestic situation and can assess the best way to do this. All too often I hear of domestic situations where one person’s hobbies or interests have a negative effect on the household as a whole. Normally I aim to have at least one portable Ultralight radio DXing session a week if I can, normally a Saturday night or one night during the week, however this can change based on the above. Of late I have been taking my children for more walks and quite often I take an ultralight radio or two with me in case I find a suitable location, as they are now slightly older they will often be happy on the play equipment while I am doing some DXing.

Once a suitable day and time has been found the next step is to check the weather forecast for that day. In the past when I was involved in the amateur radio / radio scanning hobby, I used to undertake quite a bit of out and about scanning which involved sitting on hill tops, lookouts, mountains and so on, from doing this I learnt two VERY important lessons:
- Sitting in the sun for hours at a time is not fun and this reduces your enjoyment of the hobby.
- Sitting in the cold for hours at a time is not fun and this reduces your enjoyment hobby.

Based on this I like to make sure the weather will be suitable. While the cold can be overcome with extra clothes, being too hot is much harder to control and in extreme cases this can be quite bad for your health (dehydration, sun stroke and so on). Storms and other weather extremes are also not fun to be out in so I like to try and avoid these if possible. During our Australian summer, bush fires are a very real risk and given most locations are prime fire spots, the fire danger rating (FDR) and a safe access / escape are very important to consider. The local sunrise / sunset are also checked and this helps with planning a suitable time to leave home to be at the chosen location to maximise any advantage from these different times of the day.

Next you need to decide on a location, I like to have a mix of new locations and some proven ones. Some are quite close and others are quite a distance to drive. The things I consider when deciding on a location include:
- Distance to drive (The cost of fuel is a factor in this, as is the amount of time I have for my DXing session)
- Access (some areas are locked after hours)
- RF profile (Some locations are better due to distance from high power transmitters)
- Comforts (Shops, toilets, etc.)
- Personal Security / Safety (See notes below) 

All these points are fairly easy to assess except for personal security, yet this is the most important.

The city I live in is fairly safe and crime it is not always the first thing I think of, yet personal security and safety is very important. Sitting in your car or walking in the bush with multiple radios, by yourself, around and after dark, in locations such as lookouts or hill tops, beaches, parks or car parks can expose you to an increased risk to your personal safety. These locations at times can be used by people for a number of reasons which may not be legal or which may cause you to witness things you don't want to witness. Some of these locations are used for drug dealing, exchanges or people meeting others whom they are not married to in a "lover’s lane" type situation. Generally locations with a good level of passing traffic or close to houses are better than isolated spots.  Good lighting is also a benefit as is having multiple entry and exits points. The best advice is to keep your doors locked if in your car and to be aware of your surroundings both in your car and while on foot. If you feel unsafe or uneasy it is better to cut your session short than get caught up in somebody else's problems or risk your personal safety. Having a torch and a mobile phone plus telling somebody where you will be and when you will be home are all good safety tips. Some larger torches can be used as a weapon is the most serious of situations.

My planning really starts the night before or early in the morning when I prepare everything I am going to take, charge batteries and pack up my gear. My normal kit consists of this:
- Receivers (1, 2, 3 or more in my carry case)
- Batteries (Fully recharged and also some spare alkaline AA's and AAA’s)
- Head phones (I prefer the ear bud type and these are easier to carry)
- Log book / sheets and pen + spares
- Torch (Now using my phone / torch in my radio)
- List of all frequencies
- Multi-tool
- Blanket (if it is cold)
- Spare jacket / vest
- Digital camera (I am now using my phone)
- Food and drinks
- Band-Aids and a small towel
- Mobile phone
- Identification such as a driver’s licence (which you should be carrying anyway if you are driving)

In the past I have used digital camera bags and hard ABS type cases, these types of cases / bags each have advantages and disadvantages. ABS cases standout and make it look like you are carrying expensive equipment, which might not be a great idea in some remote locations. Soft cases on the other hand don’t provide enough protection in some circumstances. I have created a custom carry case which I can easily place inside a backpack if I need to or which I can just as easily carry by itself. This is the best of both worlds and provides a great level of protection to my radios and 3” FSL aerial.

Before leaving home, I check my kit and confirm I have everything I need. When I arrive onsite I do a quick recon of the area to make sure it is safe, no dodgy people around and I feel comfortable. Then I do a quick scan of the bands and check for the normal stations, now I can sit back, relax and get serious about logging. I also try to eat something and drink to keep my fluids up. I like to also get some photos each time I go out for the report on my blog. If I am going portable I like to try a few different spots and also interact with anybody I see, even if this is just a passing hello on a track. 

On returning home I make sure I spend some time with my wife and children before checking my loggings and entering these in to my frequency database.


Re: Awards Program

Jorge Garzón
 

Hi Gary and the rest of the group. 
I have read the lack of volunteers for the award program. I would like to share with you my goodwill to help if you decide to re-start the program. I am used to Photoshop environment and I have enough time to help without compromising my radio listening sessions, more now that we have re-structured our working schedules due to COVID-19. 

I have colaborated as editor with DX bulletins and even I helped RNE in Sevilla as a QSL manager just for a better developping of radio and DXing culture. I also sometimes design QSL cards for free radio stations (I include one of the QSL that I designed for Radio Merlin Int this past springtime, designed entirely with Adobe Photoshop). 

73!

Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL) 
QTH: IN83ag / 43º15' N · 03º56' W
Urb. San Roque 95, casa 5 (Villasevil)
39698 Santiurde de Toranzo (ESPAÑA - SPAIN)
..................................................................................
Blog: IberiaDX  · Twitter: @IberiaDX


En martes, 10 de noviembre de 2020 04:43:41 CET, Gary DeBock via groups.io <d1028gary@...> escribió:


On Mon, Nov 9, 2020 at 02:47 PM, Paul Blundell wrote:
How much work would it involve? I am happy to help out with it. Do we need to look at "revamping" them a bit?
 
Paul
Paul,

The administration and preparation of the Award Certificates would require skill in Adobe photoshop software, since new certificates are made by altering previously awarded certificates (and master samples). In addition, a serious donation of time and effort would be involved, since multiple applications can be received at any time, the processing of which could seriously impact your DXing time (and other activities). It is not unusual to have a backlog of 15 or 20 certificates waiting to be prepared, with the applicants wondering why they have not yet received them (and sending emails to that effect). It is for these reasons that I reluctantly decided to stop taking these applications about 4 years ago, due to a lack of free hobby time.

Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)


 


Re: Planning a Portable Ultralight radio DXing Session – November 2020

Jorge Garzón
 

Thanks for this blog entry, Paul. I love to combine radio and walking and often I visit not crowded spots where the only living beings that I found are wild animals, cattle, shepherds or just casual walkers. I also carry my stuff in a rucksack. 

But, do you carry that yellow hard case in your backpack? It seems big and heavy, isn't it? 

I also chose selected spots in the wild where I can park safely and then carry my 'heavy stuff' which includes a folding camping chair, a small table a solid  tripod foot and a telescopic fishing rod to help with antennae. 

Some of these pictures are shown in my blog here: https://iberiadx.wordpress.com/ where last night I posted a reflection on the DXing hobby related to DXing at live and SDR (in Spanish, but easy to translate with Google translator) 

¡Saludos! 

Jorge Garzón (EB7EFA · EA1036 SWL) 
QTH: IN83ag / 43º15' N · 03º56' W
Urb. San Roque 95, casa 5 (Villasevil)
39698 Santiurde de Toranzo (ESPAÑA - SPAIN)
..................................................................................
Blog: IberiaDX  · Twitter: @IberiaDX


En martes, 10 de noviembre de 2020 04:25:52 CET, Paul Blundell <tanger32au@...> escribió:


Planning a Portable Ultralight radio DXing Session – November 2020

 

 

 

 

For some people this could be as easy as grabbing a radio as you head out the door; I have found that some more planning is required to get the most from my portable Ultralight radio DXing sessions. This is especially important now with COVID-19 restrictions in some areas and changes due to this. I am now making a point of keeping a good distance away from people and limiting how much time I am out and about in public. I am now focusing on more remote / less used areas. For those in areas with current COVID-19 restrictions, it is vital that all rules and guidelines are followed. Local health advice must be the overriding decider on what you are able to do. 

When I am planning a portable Ultralight radio DXing session, my first step is to arrange a suitable day and time. I am happily married and as we have a couple of young children, ensuring the domestic front is happy goes a long way to ensuring I can have a good time. I like to try and arrange my outings around times when my wife won't be home or is busy; this makes it easier to be away from home. Only you know your own domestic situation and can assess the best way to do this. All too often I hear of domestic situations where one person’s hobbies or interests have a negative effect on the household as a whole. Normally I aim to have at least one portable Ultralight radio DXing session a week if I can, normally a Saturday night or one night during the week, however this can change based on the above. Of late I have been taking my children for more walks and quite often I take an ultralight radio or two with me in case I find a suitable location, as they are now slightly older they will often be happy on the play equipment while I am doing some DXing.

Once a suitable day and time has been found the next step is to check the weather forecast for that day. In the past when I was involved in the amateur radio / radio scanning hobby, I used to undertake quite a bit of out and about scanning which involved sitting on hill tops, lookouts, mountains and so on, from doing this I learnt two VERY important lessons:
- Sitting in the sun for hours at a time is not fun and this reduces your enjoyment of the hobby.
- Sitting in the cold for hours at a time is not fun and this reduces your enjoyment hobby.

Based on this I like to make sure the weather will be suitable. While the cold can be overcome with extra clothes, being too hot is much harder to control and in extreme cases this can be quite bad for your health (dehydration, sun stroke and so on). Storms and other weather extremes are also not fun to be out in so I like to try and avoid these if possible. During our Australian summer, bush fires are a very real risk and given most locations are prime fire spots, the fire danger rating (FDR) and a safe access / escape are very important to consider. The local sunrise / sunset are also checked and this helps with planning a suitable time to leave home to be at the chosen location to maximise any advantage from these different times of the day.

Next you need to decide on a location, I like to have a mix of new locations and some proven ones. Some are quite close and others are quite a distance to drive. The things I consider when deciding on a location include:
- Distance to drive (The cost of fuel is a factor in this, as is the amount of time I have for my DXing session)
- Access (some areas are locked after hours)
- RF profile (Some locations are better due to distance from high power transmitters)
- Comforts (Shops, toilets, etc.)
- Personal Security / Safety (See notes below) 

All these points are fairly easy to assess except for personal security, yet this is the most important.

The city I live in is fairly safe and crime it is not always the first thing I think of, yet personal security and safety is very important. Sitting in your car or walking in the bush with multiple radios, by yourself, around and after dark, in locations such as lookouts or hill tops, beaches, parks or car parks can expose you to an increased risk to your personal safety. These locations at times can be used by people for a number of reasons which may not be legal or which may cause you to witness things you don't want to witness. Some of these locations are used for drug dealing, exchanges or people meeting others whom they are not married to in a "lover’s lane" type situation. Generally locations with a good level of passing traffic or close to houses are better than isolated spots.  Good lighting is also a benefit as is having multiple entry and exits points. The best advice is to keep your doors locked if in your car and to be aware of your surroundings both in your car and while on foot. If you feel unsafe or uneasy it is better to cut your session short than get caught up in somebody else's problems or risk your personal safety. Having a torch and a mobile phone plus telling somebody where you will be and when you will be home are all good safety tips. Some larger torches can be used as a weapon is the most serious of situations.

My planning really starts the night before or early in the morning when I prepare everything I am going to take, charge batteries and pack up my gear. My normal kit consists of this:
- Receivers (1, 2, 3 or more in my carry case)
- Batteries (Fully recharged and also some spare alkaline AA's and AAA’s)
- Head phones (I prefer the ear bud type and these are easier to carry)
- Log book / sheets and pen + spares
- Torch (Now using my phone / torch in my radio)
- List of all frequencies
- Multi-tool
- Blanket (if it is cold)
- Spare jacket / vest
- Digital camera (I am now using my phone)
- Food and drinks
- Band-Aids and a small towel
- Mobile phone
- Identification such as a driver’s licence (which you should be carrying anyway if you are driving)

In the past I have used digital camera bags and hard ABS type cases, these types of cases / bags each have advantages and disadvantages. ABS cases standout and make it look like you are carrying expensive equipment, which might not be a great idea in some remote locations. Soft cases on the other hand don’t provide enough protection in some circumstances. I have created a custom carry case which I can easily place inside a backpack if I need to or which I can just as easily carry by itself. This is the best of both worlds and provides a great level of protection to my radios and 3” FSL aerial.

Before leaving home, I check my kit and confirm I have everything I need. When I arrive onsite I do a quick recon of the area to make sure it is safe, no dodgy people around and I feel comfortable. Then I do a quick scan of the bands and check for the normal stations, now I can sit back, relax and get serious about logging. I also try to eat something and drink to keep my fluids up. I like to also get some photos each time I go out for the report on my blog. If I am going portable I like to try a few different spots and also interact with anybody I see, even if this is just a passing hello on a track. 

On returning home I make sure I spend some time with my wife and children before checking my loggings and entering these in to my frequency database.


Re: Awards Program

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks for the information.

Maybe in 2021, as a group we could look at finding a better way of preparing these, if enough interests exists for them.

Paul

On Tue, Nov 10, 2020 at 2:43 PM Gary DeBock via groups.io <D1028Gary=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:
On Mon, Nov 9, 2020 at 02:47 PM, Paul Blundell wrote:
How much work would it involve? I am happy to help out with it. Do we need to look at "revamping" them a bit?
 
Paul
Paul,

The administration and preparation of the Award Certificates would require skill in Adobe photoshop software, since new certificates are made by altering previously awarded certificates (and master samples). In addition, a serious donation of time and effort would be involved, since multiple applications can be received at any time, the processing of which could seriously impact your DXing time (and other activities). It is not unusual to have a backlog of 15 or 20 certificates waiting to be prepared, with the applicants wondering why they have not yet received them (and sending emails to that effect). It is for these reasons that I reluctantly decided to stop taking these applications about 4 years ago, due to a lack of free hobby time.

Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)


 



--
Paul


Re: Awards Program

Gary DeBock
 

On Mon, Nov 9, 2020 at 02:47 PM, Paul Blundell wrote:
How much work would it involve? I am happy to help out with it. Do we need to look at "revamping" them a bit?
 
Paul
Paul,

The administration and preparation of the Award Certificates would require skill in Adobe photoshop software, since new certificates are made by altering previously awarded certificates (and master samples). In addition, a serious donation of time and effort would be involved, since multiple applications can be received at any time, the processing of which could seriously impact your DXing time (and other activities). It is not unusual to have a backlog of 15 or 20 certificates waiting to be prepared, with the applicants wondering why they have not yet received them (and sending emails to that effect). It is for these reasons that I reluctantly decided to stop taking these applications about 4 years ago, due to a lack of free hobby time.

Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)


 


Planning a Portable Ultralight radio DXing Session – November 2020

Paul Blundell
 

Planning a Portable Ultralight radio DXing Session – November 2020

 

 

 

 

For some people this could be as easy as grabbing a radio as you head out the door; I have found that some more planning is required to get the most from my portable Ultralight radio DXing sessions. This is especially important now with COVID-19 restrictions in some areas and changes due to this. I am now making a point of keeping a good distance away from people and limiting how much time I am out and about in public. I am now focusing on more remote / less used areas. For those in areas with current COVID-19 restrictions, it is vital that all rules and guidelines are followed. Local health advice must be the overriding decider on what you are able to do. 

When I am planning a portable Ultralight radio DXing session, my first step is to arrange a suitable day and time. I am happily married and as we have a couple of young children, ensuring the domestic front is happy goes a long way to ensuring I can have a good time. I like to try and arrange my outings around times when my wife won't be home or is busy; this makes it easier to be away from home. Only you know your own domestic situation and can assess the best way to do this. All too often I hear of domestic situations where one person’s hobbies or interests have a negative effect on the household as a whole. Normally I aim to have at least one portable Ultralight radio DXing session a week if I can, normally a Saturday night or one night during the week, however this can change based on the above. Of late I have been taking my children for more walks and quite often I take an ultralight radio or two with me in case I find a suitable location, as they are now slightly older they will often be happy on the play equipment while I am doing some DXing.

Once a suitable day and time has been found the next step is to check the weather forecast for that day. In the past when I was involved in the amateur radio / radio scanning hobby, I used to undertake quite a bit of out and about scanning which involved sitting on hill tops, lookouts, mountains and so on, from doing this I learnt two VERY important lessons:
- Sitting in the sun for hours at a time is not fun and this reduces your enjoyment of the hobby.
- Sitting in the cold for hours at a time is not fun and this reduces your enjoyment hobby.

Based on this I like to make sure the weather will be suitable. While the cold can be overcome with extra clothes, being too hot is much harder to control and in extreme cases this can be quite bad for your health (dehydration, sun stroke and so on). Storms and other weather extremes are also not fun to be out in so I like to try and avoid these if possible. During our Australian summer, bush fires are a very real risk and given most locations are prime fire spots, the fire danger rating (FDR) and a safe access / escape are very important to consider. The local sunrise / sunset are also checked and this helps with planning a suitable time to leave home to be at the chosen location to maximise any advantage from these different times of the day.

Next you need to decide on a location, I like to have a mix of new locations and some proven ones. Some are quite close and others are quite a distance to drive. The things I consider when deciding on a location include:
- Distance to drive (The cost of fuel is a factor in this, as is the amount of time I have for my DXing session)
- Access (some areas are locked after hours)
- RF profile (Some locations are better due to distance from high power transmitters)
- Comforts (Shops, toilets, etc.)
- Personal Security / Safety (See notes below) 

All these points are fairly easy to assess except for personal security, yet this is the most important.

The city I live in is fairly safe and crime it is not always the first thing I think of, yet personal security and safety is very important. Sitting in your car or walking in the bush with multiple radios, by yourself, around and after dark, in locations such as lookouts or hill tops, beaches, parks or car parks can expose you to an increased risk to your personal safety. These locations at times can be used by people for a number of reasons which may not be legal or which may cause you to witness things you don't want to witness. Some of these locations are used for drug dealing, exchanges or people meeting others whom they are not married to in a "lover’s lane" type situation. Generally locations with a good level of passing traffic or close to houses are better than isolated spots.  Good lighting is also a benefit as is having multiple entry and exits points. The best advice is to keep your doors locked if in your car and to be aware of your surroundings both in your car and while on foot. If you feel unsafe or uneasy it is better to cut your session short than get caught up in somebody else's problems or risk your personal safety. Having a torch and a mobile phone plus telling somebody where you will be and when you will be home are all good safety tips. Some larger torches can be used as a weapon is the most serious of situations.

My planning really starts the night before or early in the morning when I prepare everything I am going to take, charge batteries and pack up my gear. My normal kit consists of this:
- Receivers (1, 2, 3 or more in my carry case)
- Batteries (Fully recharged and also some spare alkaline AA's and AAA’s)
- Head phones (I prefer the ear bud type and these are easier to carry)
- Log book / sheets and pen + spares
- Torch (Now using my phone / torch in my radio)
- List of all frequencies
- Multi-tool
- Blanket (if it is cold)
- Spare jacket / vest
- Digital camera (I am now using my phone)
- Food and drinks
- Band-Aids and a small towel
- Mobile phone
- Identification such as a driver’s licence (which you should be carrying anyway if you are driving)

In the past I have used digital camera bags and hard ABS type cases, these types of cases / bags each have advantages and disadvantages. ABS cases standout and make it look like you are carrying expensive equipment, which might not be a great idea in some remote locations. Soft cases on the other hand don’t provide enough protection in some circumstances. I have created a custom carry case which I can easily place inside a backpack if I need to or which I can just as easily carry by itself. This is the best of both worlds and provides a great level of protection to my radios and 3” FSL aerial.

Before leaving home, I check my kit and confirm I have everything I need. When I arrive onsite I do a quick recon of the area to make sure it is safe, no dodgy people around and I feel comfortable. Then I do a quick scan of the bands and check for the normal stations, now I can sit back, relax and get serious about logging. I also try to eat something and drink to keep my fluids up. I like to also get some photos each time I go out for the report on my blog. If I am going portable I like to try a few different spots and also interact with anybody I see, even if this is just a passing hello on a track. 

On returning home I make sure I spend some time with my wife and children before checking my loggings and entering these in to my frequency database.

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