Shed Workshop: Going portable with SOTA, POTA and Hidden Transmitter Hunts

SUNDAY 01 DEC 2019

The summer months have arrived so at our shed workshop we talked about opportunities to get out of the shack and go portable with SOTA, POTA, Fox Hunting, etc. The shed workshop was held at John ZL2XJ’s QTH on Sunday 1 December from 1300 to 1500 hours and was attended by 9 people.

Time to get out of the shack!

Our speakers, including special guest Wynne Morgan ZL2ATH, John ZL2XJ, Bernard ZL2BD and Kenneth ZS6KEN, covered SOTA (Summits on the Air), POTA (Parks on the Air), and Fox Hunting respectively. The discussion will be around equipment, locations, logistics, and involvement / teams.

At the meeting it was agreed that we would plan to get out and about with SOTA/POTA activations next year in the first weekend of February (or if weather is bad either of the following weekends) with multiple locations (Summits and/or Parks). We will also be putting in entries in the regional Fox Hunt at the combined branches BBQ on 26 January 2020.

November meeting – Bios+

No not a BIOS upgrade for your computer … But at the last meeting of the year on 17 November 2019 we got insights into the backgrounds of two of our members. Summarised information will appear in due course on a members only page on the website. The idea is to collect together a short set of bios for all of our regular attendees so that newcomers will be able to get to know us more quickly.

Radio Frequency Interference: Shed Workshop

In a world of worsening noise floors, our workshop on RFI was eagerly awaited. Held on Sunday 3 November, from 1pm – 3pm at Bernard ZL2BD’s QTH (1 Winsley Tce, Churton Park) it was attended by 9 members.

Three speakers spoke about radio frequency interference. This is a growing problem for amateurs in urban environments and one that is not always easily able to be resolved.

The workshop was in three parts as follows:

  1. RFI in Amateur Radio: Brief overview of RFI (Bob ZL2AVM). Hams as the culprits!
  2. RF interference tracking (John ZL2XJ). Diagnostic guide and detection tools.
  3. RFI Suppression: (Bernard ZL2BD). SMPS Suppression and earthing

Everybody stayed around to enjoy the tea, coffee, sausage rolls and biscuits.

Branch 50 NZART at Maker Faire 2019

Branch 50 members, were present at the 2019 Maker Faire which took place at Queen’s Wharf in downtown Wellington on 20 October (10am – 4pm) . We participated in the NZART stand, along with members from branches 42 and 63. NZART brought amateur radio to the people. We gave away brochures about the branch, engaged with a wide range of people and talked about our hobby.

Note that there was no regular branch meeting in October, due to the Faire.