Essex Skills Night June 2016 Wrap-up

Thanks to everyone who came along to the June 2016 Essex Skills Night, hosted by the Chelmsford ARS training team. The event took place on Monday the 20th of June 2016, and here’s our quick look at what happened at the June gathering:

As usual, the evening was the traditional mix of hands-on practicals and show-and-tell sessions. It’s always great to see many familair faces, as well as newcomers keen to get their first taste of the Skills experience.

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Essex Skills Night – June 2016

Kits and SMD:

For the first time, Dave G4HUP (a regular at the Suffolk RED event), brought along along a selection of his kits (available from, plus tools for working with SMD (Surface Mount Devices).

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Dave G4HUP with his collection of HUFrf kits at the June 2016 Skills Night

PCB Antennas

Exhibiting for the first time, Sam G4DDK, with his log periodic PCB antennas as well as a collection of pre-amps.

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Sam G4DDK with a log periodic PCB antenna

Working Satellites

Steve M0SHQ was back after a short break to offer advice on getting started with space contacts. Although Tim Peake’s now back on terra firma, there’s plenty up in orbit to work!

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Steve M0SHQ, doing his satellite demo at the June Essex Skills Night

Spectrum Analyser

Returning for this third Skills session, Mike G4NVT put on a demo of how to use a spectrum analyser for VSWR testing, filter testing and set up.

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Mike G4NVT with his test kit at the June Essex Skills Night

Test equipment

Thanks to Steve G4GHO for bringing along his antenna analyser, VNWA and S-parameter test set, for another interesting demo.

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Steve G4GHO running some antenna tests at the June 2016 Skills Night

Wind Speed and Direction Project

Alan M0IWZ brought along a homebrew wind direction and wind speed monitor, powered by an Arduino and made from cheap eBay parts – handy for those with masts and large antennas, and very impressive. One for the upcoming CARS construction evening, we suspect!

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Alan M0IWZ’s homebrew wind speed and direction project

Data Modes:

A demo of one of the many data modes, and help on how to get started using data, courtesy of Essex Ham

Getting Started with Essex Ham

A collection of recently-updated Getting Started Guides from Essex Ham, plus demos of three popular data modes. Plus a screening of the latest RSGB video with an overview of the Tim Peake ARISS contacts in 2016 (the video was played on a £4 Raspberry Pi Zero)

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Essex Ham’s table at the June 2016 Essex Skills Night

Morse and More:

Thanks to Rob, Dean and Oliver from the Essex CW Club, for putting on the live CW demo station – this time, in the Hawkins Room for a change of scenery.

Essex Skills Night - June 2016
Rob M0KCP, on the key at the Essex Skills Night – June 2016

Chelmsford ARS:

Ray 2E0GVE was manning the CARS membership and merchandise table, with support from Chris G0IPU

Callsign Badges:

Jim 2E0JTW and Glynis 2E0CUQ both busy on new callsign badges, for the first time using a new slimline machine.


Chris G0IPU ran the quiz, with the traditional mix of random radio questions, just for fun!

My thanks…

I’d like to express my personal thanks to those who turned up to help make the June 2016 Skills Night such a great night, and to those who continue to support the Essex Skills Nights at Danbury.

A big personal thanks to Ann, Myra and David for handling the catering for the event.

A reminder that the next Essex Skills Night is on Monday the 18th of July.

Thanks all, and 73,

Pete M0PSX


Related Links

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *