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Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Blackpool rally 2016 - pre-rally post

First post since November! My goodness I am behind, lol

Now, as you may or may not recall, I visited the NARSA rally at the Norbreck Castle Hotel in Blackpool last year, though it took an absolute age to get the car parked, so I intend to go much earlier as I am definitely visiting again, and I can also add extra rallies to my diary this year, Ripon at the end of April, the Hamfest in September at Newark (subject to my current car passing it's MOT), and finally the Bishop Auckland rally in December, but for now my focus is on Blackpool.

Having looked on the website for the Blackpool Rally already it looks like it will be much the same last year, I didn't get to talk to any of the local club members myself last time so I might do that this time and see what goes on on the other side of the hills.

I might see if I can pick up a decent rig for a bargain price, or failing that some antenna building components, either way I can get a lot of this stuff dirt cheap of stalls at rallies, also I am still intending to get a Yaesu FTM100DE but unless I can get one on a good finance deal then it will have to wait.

Hopefully I won't have a repeat of last year, that being stuck circling the car park for anything up to an hour, my plan is to get there early and maybe just stick my 2-meter magmount on the roof of the car on one of my handies, whether I tx or not is another matter, I might just listen to save the battery on the handheld as I lack a battery eliminator.

Last year I came out of the Blackpool rally with a free Baofeng BF-888 and the Intermediate Licence study book, perhaps this time I'll come out with more than just things from the RSGB.

In other news, with my window fitting taking place last month I had to completely disassemble my "shack" so the windows could be done, and I have only just got it back together, this does not include the ShackCam as I intend to find another camera for this and free up my JVC camcorder for other uses, so that might be offline for a while, other changes include all the programming leads for the radios are connected to the computer, along with the USB Serial port, they seem to coexist fine, the Midland BaseCamp446 is currently not back in place as I don't require it at this time, the chargers for the PMR446 and handheld CBs are also not plugged in for the moment, this will take place later as and when I need these. the home made extension speaker (merely a shower radio housing with only the speaker intact) is not in place either and will be sorted later, the President Grant II and the Leixen VV-898 both made it back in and both power on fine though I am not able to test the TX on them as I have not hooked up a dummy load or antenna to either radio, the window fitting also forced me to move the (extremely drifty) receiver I have in the kitchen window, although this has been put back into place now.

Obviously I've not done anything mobile since I was forced to scrap my old car as I've not found time to figure out how to fit a working rig to my current car that would not involve drilling holes everywhere, something I can do with the Yaesu FTM100DE as it has a detachable faceplate and the main unit can sit under the driver or passenger seat with the display on the dashboard, though I believe the microphone is connected to the main unit which obviously restricts where this can go.

As I'm all out of things to post, for now, the next update should be after the Blackpool rally

73 de M6RSQ

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