Shoebury East Beach 31 May 2015

A group of Essex Hams were out at Shoebury East Beach on Sunday 31st of May 2015 for an informal day of radio. Here’s a summary of the day’s amateur radio activities.

Shoebury Beach Group Photo
Shoebury Beach Group Photo

Steve M0SHQ was the first on site, ready to work the day’s first pass of the SO-50 satellite. Well done to Steve for making contact with Juan EA4CYQ using just 5 watts, his home-made beam and his FT-817. For the second pass, Nick 2E0DVX had his first go at making contact through SO-50.

Nick from TX Factor, filming Steve M0SHQ's SO-50 contact
Nick from TX Factor, filming Steve M0SHQ’s SO-50 contact

Radio-wise, several stations were active – Peter G0DZB was busy on CW using his Elecraft KX3, Steve 2E0UEH was on HF, Mark 2E0RMT’s RAYNET rig was running for guest messages (DMR and 2m analogue), with Nick 2E0DVX and Pete M0PSX running FT-857s.

HAB Launch

Highlight of the day was the launch of a high altitude balloon by Chris Stubbs M6EDF helped out by Ed.  Chris has launched a number of balloons here in Essex, including launches for the Chelmsford ARS and at last year’s Basildon JOTA.

For more on the flight of SXHAM1, see SXHAM1 HAB flight, or check out the following video:

SXHAM1 – High Altitude Balloon Launch

 

Thanks to Mark 2E0RMT for saving the day with his gazebo – the forecast was for occasional showers, but in the end, only one real downpour for 10 minutes and the hams were all snug and dry under the gazebo.

Thanks to Mark 2E0RMT for the Comms vehicle and the gazebo
Thanks to Mark 2E0RMT for the Comms vehicle and the gazebo

Visiting for part of the day was a delegation from SOSLUG, the Southend-on-Sea Linux User Group. We were their guests for the day at the weekend’s Southend Raspberry Jam, and it was great to see them come along to see what we get up to when we’re out playing radio.

One of the SOSLUg team, Andy Melder, brought along a rather exciting and rare surprise guest, an AstroPi. One of These is due to travel to the ISS with Major Tim Peake later this year, with kids involved in a competition to get their code sent up to the ISS. Thanks to Andy and SOSLUG for the very unique Show and Tell!

Andy from SOSLUG with the AstroPi
Andy from SOSLUG with the AstroPi

Other highlights from the day included Dean Sullivan making his contact just a couple of days after passing with the South Essex ARS, some students of Steve 2E0UEH getting hands-on with antennas, some antenna testing, and a flight of Dean’s drone – footage to follow!

Dean, making his first QSO on 2m
Dean, making his first QSO on 2m

TX Factor in town

For the second day in a row, we were joined by Bob G0FGX and Nick 2E0FGQ – two thirds of the TX Factor team. They were in the area for the weekend gathering material for an upcoming feature. They captured loads of footage of us “hams at play”, and interviewed several of us Essex Hams, including Laura (just passed the SEARS Foundation Course), Rob 2E0LMX making a QSO, Chris M6EDF on the balloon launch, Andy from SOSLUG on the AstroPi and several others.

Anyone thinking of playing radio at the weekend might have thought about shying away from Sunday, with the forecast predicting rain. According to cameraman Nick 2E0FGQ, we had the perfect day for it – filming into sun and dealing with shadows, is a nightmare for video work, and we’re told the light was perfect. With only 10 minutes of radio, us hardy hams has a great day.

Other visitors included Paul G7BHE (making a guest message of a different kind at one point), Ed G8FAX, Keith G7FFI and Leslie (Mrs FFI), David G3SVI and Myra M0MYR, Richard M0CLZ, Dorothy 2E0NCE & Zena (SWL and head ball chaser), plus several others.

Antenna setup and testing at Shoebury Beach
Antenna setup and testing at Shoebury Beach

Thanks to everyone who turned up to make this a great day – hopefully everyone had fun playing radio in their natural habitat.

More Photos

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One Comment

  1. M0LMR 2E0NCE 3 June 2015 Reply

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