The new repeater has completed its testing phase and was installed on site in Co. Limerick on the 13th of July. The site is not Keeper Hill. Paul EI6FE, President of Limerick Radio club had the first QSO with the installers on site while mobile near Shannon. This was more by chance than an inaugural ceremony!
Good 70 centimetre coverage is expected in West Clare, most of Limerick and parts of East Kerry, Tipperary South Riding and North Cork. Low power "rubber duck" handheld access should be available in Shannon Town and Limerick city. The repeater is permanently linked to Limerick R5 2 metre only. There may be mobile or base station access in Mallow, Blarney, Tralee and Tipperary Town. Please send reports to Mike "ei9feb at eircom dot net".
Within minutes of operation Hugh EI2HI in Bandon was Q5 on 5 Watts base station and EI5HE good signal mobile in Mallow area. John EI5FOB gave 59+40 from Shannon / Limerick road and Jackie EI3FU had coverage in 2 metre blackspots near Castletownroache. Don't forget to wait for the 3rd pip from the 2 metre Repeater when operating on 70 cm or the 2 metre repeater will timeout.
Mike EI9FEB, Brendan EI0CZ and Albert EI9IY assisted the commercial aerial rigger who did an excellent job mounting the Watson 50 about 90 feet up the mast. Fitting the compression N-Connector on the cable end at the repeater took a few minutes and the repeater worked perfectly on first "switch on". WX was smashing with no wind and sharp sunshine. The actual location will be announced in a few weeks, so have fun guessing the QTH and trying to access it! The site is of course a hill top and has both Seefin and Mt. Lienster 70 cm signals S9 on a handheld with rubber duck.
The settings are 433.125 for your receiver and 434.725 MHz on your transmitter (standard RB5, 1.6 MHz plus split) with CTCSS or PLTone of 103.5 Hz. The RB5 repeater is permanently linked to Limerick R5 repeater, which uses a 1750 Hz tone burst to open.
Listening on 2 metres you can tell if a QSO is with a 70cm user as a distinctive "tuning fork" mechanical tone burst will preface every 70cm transmission. 2m to 2m QSO sound as before. Listening on 70cm, a 70cm QSO has no preface, but a tail of three beeps, the first is the 70cm "pip", the second indicates the 2m link is active and the 3rd is the pip from the 2m repeater. It is after a slight pause (in the 2m repeater controller), so wait for it or 2m will "time out". A 2m QSO heard on 70cm simply has the 2m pip at the end of each over, no 70cm pips.
On "70cm RB5" any DTMF tones are "blanked" by the controller. If you need to send DTMF via the controller prefix it by "5". If you want to test your DTMF keypad on 70cm, press "# 5" and you will hear the ident in CW. To echo any keypad DTMF, press "# 8" and it will echo in CW. This feature turns off after about 45 seconds of no carrier. If emailing a report indicate aerial type, power, QTH and if handheld, mobile or base station.
The Cork Repeater Group is at present in the process of upgrading both the 2 metre and 70 centimetre repeaters, and wishes to apologise for the interruption of service, it is hoped to have both back in full service soon.
The Polish Telegraphy Club and the Polish Radio Amateur's Journal are sponsoring the 2005 Worked HQ Stations award for working HQ stations during the upcoming IARU HF Contest. The basic W-HQ-S is earned for 10 QSOs with HQ stations representing all three IARU Regions. Special endorsements are available for each 10 additional QSOs / Heards. Rules and picture of the W-HQ-S Award are available on the Web at whqs2005award.prv.pl.
Members of the Mayo Radio Experimenters Network put on a public display of the hobby at the Annual Vintage Tractor and Steam Rally in Hollybrook, Co. Mayo on Sunday Last July the 3rd. During the display the club operated CW and phone modes QRP on a number of HF Bands using the Club Callsign EI7MRE. There was tremendous public interest in the club stand with young and old alike.
The MREN will hold theory classes from September and anyone interested in taking part should contact Brendan EI6IZ. The Club's rally will be held in The Belmont Hotel Knock on Sunday November 20th.
The results of the Club' May/June Members competition were as follows: 1st. John McAndrew, EI3JM; 2nd, John Browne, EI7FAB; 3rd, Mike Hayes, EI2EO; and 4th, Jimmy Kelly, EI2GCB.
The Cork Radio Rally will be held in the Blarney Park Hotel on the 25th of September. Doors open at 11 a.m. Free parking plenty of things to do in Blarney this year as this year celebrates the Cork Capital of Culture. All enquiries about tables trading etc. should be made to Con on 086 1071312 or 021 4270136 email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Mayo Radio Experimenters Network Rally will be held on Sunday November the 20th at the usual venue, the Belmont Hotel, Knock. Doors open at 11:00 a.m. Bookings for accommodation should be made directly with the hotel. The rate is 50 Euro per person with a special all-in rate of 70 Euro for Bed & Breakfast and evening meal. Traders should contact Padraic Baynes EI9JA for exhibition space.
The Waterford Rally will take place on the 16th of October 2005 in the McEniff, Ard Ri Hotel, Waterford. Traders confirmed to date are; Long Communications, South East Communications and Tetra Communications. Special room rates are available for those attending the rally; Bed and Breakfast for 2 nights plus one dinner is 89 Euro per person sharing. Bed and Breakfast for one night plus 1 dinner is 55 Euro per person sharing. A 19 Euro single supplement applies. For information or to reserve stalls contact Michael Hoban, EI5DCB on 051-873310.
The Slievenamon Trophy is awaiting the station who can work the most 70 centimetres stations simplex on FM or SSB during the full month of July, please give a listen on the band especially at the weekends.
A sudden increase in solar activity has been recently observed. In the past week there has been a series of explosions from sunspot number 786 with an X1-class flare observed on July the 14th. Because the sunspot is near the sun's western limb, none of the blasts was Earth directed. However, coronal mass ejections hurled into space by these explosions could impact Earth's magnetic field possibly sparking geomagnetic storms and affecting propagation on the HF bands. There is also an increased chance of Aurora at Northern latitudes.
Items for inclusion in next weeks Radio News should be forwarded to Mark EI7IS at QTHR or by phone to 051-853806 (evenings or weekends) or 087 6302026 (daytime). Items for the radio news can also be faxed to 087 5 6302026. News should be submitted via e-mail to "news at irts dot ie" for automatic forwarding to both the radio and printed news services. Please note that items for the radio news should reach the editor no later than midday on Fridays.