Monday, January 31, 2011

EA1AQ/M: Cova da Serpe (Snake's Cave)

This is a video of my first QSO from Cova da Serpe (EA1/LU-046), with EA1AQ/M on 2m FM.

I was using 20W with a quarter-wave on my FT-857D.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

DF7MC: Cova da Serpe (Snake's Cave)

This is a video of a QSO with German station DF7MC on 20m SSB from Cova da Serpe (Snake's Cave), SOTA reference EA1/LU-046. This was my fouth QSO.

DF7MC was running only 5W into a delta loop antenna. Well done!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Alto das Valiñas (SOTA EA1/LU-025): IZ6TGS

This is a video of a QSO on 20m SSB with Italian station IZ6TGS from Alto das Valiñas on the day of New Year's Eve, SOTA reference EA1/LU-025.

This summit awards 4 points plus a seasonal bonus of 3 points in winter.
Adrio was born in 1974 in San Benedetto del Tronto where he currently lives. His passion for radio began in 1990 but it was not until 2010 that he became a radio amateur.
On the right you can see his very nice QSL card featuring a military-style backpack transceiver.

Monday, January 24, 2011

EA1AQ from Formigueiros

This is another video of a QSO from the summit of Formigueiros (1639m). In this case it was a QSO with EA1AQ, who was operating from his caravan, some 40km away from the city of A Coruña.

I also tried a QSO with Ernesto (EA1LQ). I could hear him OK, buy he could not hear me at all, probably because, being in the city, he had a higher noise level.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Trying my new SOTA patches

I have been trying my new SOTA patches together with my second operator Adi. The picture was taken by Anca (YO8SOY). We are looking forward to using them on the field. That may have to wait until next weekend though, when I am fully recovered from a cold I caught this week.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Some pictures of the FT-857 manpack

These are some of the pictures of the light HF manpack transceiver based on the Yaesu FT-857 that I took today because several people asked me to through the FT857 Yahoo group and directly through my blog. On the first picture you can see the details of the antenna mounts for HF and VHF-UHF made out of aluminum plate. You can also see the SG-211 automatic antenna tuner attached by straps. Finally, the homebrew NiMH battery I made out of 11 4000mAh rechargeable batteries that I bought at a well known German supermarket chain.
As you can see on the second picture, the total weight of the radio is 4350g. That is a great improvement over the ft-897 manpack, which weighs 8.5kg or so. The weight improvement comes from a lighter transceiver (almost 2kg lighter), lighter tuner and using just one battery instead of the two that the FT-897 can hold internally.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Embroidered SOTA patches

I have just received our custom embroidered SOTA patches. They are first quality patches, 3" x 3", with 100% of the surface embroidered in 4 colours, heat sealed iron-on backing and stitched border.
The truth is that the patches have exceeded my expectations. They look very nice, don't they? Today I have sent the first ones to colleages in EA.
I hope they like them and soon we will be able to see them on their SOTA pictures and videos. I am looking forward to putting them on my winter jackets too.
There is also a special version with the border stitched in yellow.
The one with the red border are the most faithful to the SOTA logo, but so far the ones with yellow border are being very popular.
Perhaps it is because the red and yellow combination ressembles the Spanish flag, but I guess it depends more on the colour of the jacket you are planning to put them on.

Alto do Moradal (EA1/LU-024)

This is a video of an activation of Alto do Moradal (SOTA ref. EA1/LU-024) that I made on Christmas day.

It was a total of 6 QSOs using my FT-897 manpack with a 2.9m whip, all of them on 17m SSB.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

EA1/LU-016 - Pico de Santa Irene (IT9BDW)

This is a video of a QSO with Italian station IT9BDW during my SOTA activation of Pico de Santa Irene (SOTA ref. EA1/LU-016).

Thanks to Joseph for the nice QSO.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Pedestrian Mobile with FT-857 manpack: Bens

This is a video of a pedestrian mobile QSO with Serbian station YT1E (Rod) on 17m SSB. I was using my FT-857 manpack, featuring a 2.9m whip and an SG-211 antenna tuner. The battery is NiMh and the power 20W.

The video was shot by Anca (YO8SOY) and the audio was recorded from my car's station.

Testing the FT-857D manpack: Beiramar

Here are some videos testinf my light Yaesu manpack. The first QSO was with Germany (Mike, DB1JAW) on 17m SSB. I didn't get a very good signal report because the band was not in very good shape.

Here you can see a demonstration of how easy it is to use the automatic antenna tuner, the SG-211 by SGC:

On this video you can see a very good QSO with the Canary Islands (Jean, EA8/ON5JV), on 20m SSB.

Finally, a QSO with Scotland (Kevin, 2M0ONW):

All the QSOs were made with 20W, a 2.9m whip, and a single wire as a counterpoise.

Friday, January 14, 2011

O Teso (EA1/LU-029)

These are some videos of my activation of the summit O Teso, SOTA reference EA1/LU-029. My first QSO was on 17m SSb with the United States immediately after I switched on the station before I had time to start the vide recording. My second QSO was with an avid SOTA chaser, Quique, EA1DFP, on 17m also.

It was getting dark so I tried the 40m band. The result was a QSO with Patrick (OM1XQ) from Bratislava, on 40m SSB.

My next QSO was with Fred, CS7/PD0HNL, from Algarve on 20m.

Here is the nice eQSL I got, which means my 72nd country confirme for my eDX award.

Before leaving I made some repeater QSOs on 2m FM with Julio (EA1UP) and Juan (EA1AQ).

By then it was completely dark.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Pico de Santa Irene: IZ7FLP/P

This is a video of a QSO with portable Italian station IZ7FLP/P from Pico de Santa Irene (1202m), SOTA ref. EA1/LU-016, 6 points plus a seasonal bonus of 3 points.

Giovanni is very active in the diploma of Italian castles (DCI) and Italian municipalities (DMI). You can follow his adventures at

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Alto das Valiñas (EA1/LU-025)

This is a video of a QSO with station MM/PA1SVM from Scotland on 20m SSB on Christmas Eve.

Alto das Valiñas (SOTA ref. EA1/LU-025) has an altitude of 1104m and a value of 4 points, with a seasonal bonus of 3 points.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Pedestrian mobile with Paquito, Man-Paquito

These are some videos of my new light-weight backpack radio. It is made out of a Yaesu FT-857D. The whip is 2.9m long and the antenna tuner is an SG-211. Thebattery is home made out of 4Ah NiMH cells and the power I was using was 20W.

The battery is a home-made 13.2V NiMh battery and the antenna is a 2.9m whip of military origin. My first QSO was with Canadian station VE2JCW on 20m SSB when I was tuning my antenna, before I could start the video recording.

The second QSO with IW3RUA from the North of Italy was on 17m SSB, and I was delighted to get such a good signal report.

The final QSO with the Czech Republic was slightly more difficult, but the new little manpack behaved like a champion. Test passed!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Alto de Onsolar (EA1/LU-030)

Here are a couple of videos of the SOTA activation of Alto de Onsolar (EA1/LU-030). On the first video you can see the final ascent and station setup.

On the second video you can see some quick QSOs from the summit, with the Slovak Republic, Canada and the United States.

As on other occasions I was accompanied by my friend Robi, who took care of the video recording.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Pico de Santa Irene: EA1/LU-016 (G4ZSY)

This is a video of a QSO from Pico de Santa Irene (SOTA ref. EA1/LU-016) with English station G4ZSY.

This peak gives 6 points plus a seasonal bonus of 3 points. There is a trigpoint and a telephone station at the summit.