Galleywood Field Day 29 July 2018

After a few weeks of no field ops, and with the warm weather in effect, a group of Essex Hams planned to meet for a field day on Sunday the 29th of July 2018.

After weeks of no rain, the situation changed a few days before the event, with a likely wash-out forecast – and the meteorologists we’re wrong… it rained for most of the afternoon. Note the brown grass at the normally-green Galleywood Common:

Galleywood Brown Field Day - 29 July 18
Galleywood Brown Field Day – 29 July 18

With RF looking like a wash-out, hams quickly QSY’ed to the warmth of the Horse & Groom pub for a radio-related catch-up. Topics included: Ultraflex cable, the effectiveness of lightning arrestors, Keith G6NHU’s bad luck with a lightning strike a few years back, battery-powered rat catchers, amateur radio club communication, community radio and the RSGB syllabus review.

Galleywood Gathering 29 July 18
Galleywood Gathering 29 July 18

It’s great that even with the promise of no RF and a day of heavy wind and rain, when a last-minute call goes out for a radio meeting, we can still pull a group of a dozen-or-so hams, including two new attendees, for a “gathering”.

Galleywood Gathering Pub Table 29 July 18
Galleywood Gathering Pub Table 29 July 18

The day wasn’t totally pub-bound, and later in the afternoon, a few RF activities took place…

Our field days tend to be a great place to experiment and to try out latest projects. Andrew 2E0ONH brought along his home-brew 2m Yagi antenna built using a steel tape measure. It worked well…

Andrew 2E0ONH's home-made tape ruler antenna
Andrew 2E0ONH’s home-made tape ruler antenna

…until the Galleywood wind picked up, slightly altering the SWR!

... that doesn't stand up well to Galleywood Windss
Andrew’s antenna not standing up well to Galleywood Winds

After the rains subsided, we went back out to the field for some RF. 2m was activated using Pete M0PSX’s Yaesu FT-857 on his slim jim, and Dorothy made a few local contacts on 2m.

Dorothy M0LMR, operating 2m at Galleywood Common 29 July 2018
Dorothy M0LMR, operating 2m at Galleywood Common 29 July 2018

… however, after the rain returned, decoding the damp log sheet may prove to be something of a challenge!

Rather damp log sheet
Rather damp log sheet

Thanks to Andrew (now 2E0ONH) for bringing along some Ultraflex co-ax for us to look at. Better performance that RG-213, and significantly thinner – great for low-loss patch leads, and still with a decent amount of flexibility.

A bit of Ultraflex 7 cable
A bit of Ultraflex 7 cable

So, not the most RF-ey of Essex Ham’s field days this year, but a great opportunity to chat about radio, share some knowledge and tips, catch up with the local radio gossip, and have a bit of moist summer happy hamming.

Hopefully, the next one will be a little more dry! Stay tuned to Essex Ham for details of the next field day!

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