Belated Happy New Year

Apologies for lack of activity on the site but I have been trying to resolve a problem highlighted by the hosting company. Apparently I had an excessive number of files on the server, exceeding the 200,000 limit across the 6 sites on the domain.

No site is particularly huge and this has been a little perplexing as it was reported that was responsible for around 147,000 of that number!

To be all northern ‘any road up’ I am hoping I have sussed the problem having found a temporary folder with nearly 9mb size and no way to access the contents. Deleted this and set up a new directory and firmly crossing fingers in case my action has screwed the site installation completely.

Could do with a little more knowledge of the inner workings of the beast hi hi.

Anyway, a happy New Year to all visitors to the site.

We have already enjoyed the first two meeting evenings of the year and have plans in hand to operate a station for the 7th Camborne Girl Guides for thinking day on the air on February 15th.

Mike has obtained the special call GB7CGG for obvious reasons and it is our intention to be on the air between the hours of 10.00am to 5.00pm and have been promised a good attendance as invitations have been passed to all the local Guide Troops… should be a good day.

Operation will be from the 7th’s building in the grounds at the rear of the Camborne Community Centre which is about 50 yards from Camborne Police Station.

Visitors will be made very welcome and that includes licensees who will be able to operate should they so wish.

Norman G4USB

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Surplus Equipment – Bring and Buy sale 2013

Surplus Equipment Sale

Thursday 7th November 2013

The Old School, School Lane, Gweal An Top, Redruth, Cornwall

Time: 7.30pm onwards

Bring along your surplus radio Kenwood TS990S
Yaesu ft 950 or Icom IC-7600 !

Have you any items of radio equipment in your shack that
you wish to sell?

All are welcome to attend as this is not an event limited to members only so,
if you fancy coming along you may find a bargain or a purchaser for your
surplus gear!

For Sale by Club Member
I have just done an upgrade, I am selling my Magnum 257 (no not an ice cream bar).
This is a 10-11 metre multimode rig – in perfect condition – about 22 to 25
watts out (SSB on 11 metres is to be legalised later this year (see Ofcom
site!)). I would like to get about £120 (ono) for it – so if any one is interested
it’s now available. Complete with instructions, mobile mount (unused), updown
mic, 5 memories, 1k, 10k or 100k steps (or channelised if required) –
have just worked into Russia so I know it’s good!
73 Mike (G4WQL)

If not sold beforehand this might just be there on the night!

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Amateur Radio Licence Review

Worth taking a look at this to keep up with what’s going on

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Why is the Autumn a good time to operate HF?

The Autumn has always been a Season where HF conditions improve and if you have recently
been licensed, with this being your first autumn operating on the HF bands, the chances are you
are in for a treat. But I hear you asking why?

The summer is not a good time for HF, apart from the relatively short-range intense Sporadic E
openings. However, the autumn brings improved conditions to the HF bands resulting in
openings to many parts of the world.

But why?

The sun passed through the equinox on September 22 and the long daylight hours it provides are
rapidly heading south as their Summer approaches. The result of this is that the ionosphere in
the Northern hemisphere is now cooling down and becoming more dense.

Another seasonal change occurs in the molecular-to-atomic ratio of the ionosphere. The affect of
this is that it is harder for the sun’s UV rays to ionise it.

Although it appears that the summer should be better for HF with all that sunshine, the reality is
that in summer the loss of ions (as they recombine more readily) overwhelms the increase
in production, and the total F2 layer ionisation is actually lower than it is in the spring and
the autumn.

The consequence is that although there is now less sunlight hitting the regions that make
up the ionosphere in the northern hemisphere the actual F layer ionisation is higher than
it was in the summer and D and E layer absorption is now lower too.
As a result we find that
the maximum usable frequencies (MUFs) during the day are higher than they were in summer.

The result of all the changes in activity means we are now seeing better openings on 20m and above,
including 17m (18 MHz), 15m (21 MHz), 12m (24 MHz) and 10m (28 MHz).

In October, openings should be possible to the eastern USA and the Caribbean in the afternoon on
10m, whereas in June these were unlikely to happen (apart from the odd multi-hop Sporadic E contact).

It would be worth , listening to 29.620 MHz FM in the early afternoon in October and you
are almost certain to hear the KQ2H repeater in up-state New York.

Because both hemispheres of the Earth are evenly illuminated this is also a good time for contacts to
be made on North-South paths –
we may also experience some good openings to South Africa
and South America
as a result.

On the flip side, the sun sets a lot earlier than it did in summer so we can expect the higher HF bands,
28 MHz (10m), 21 MHz (15m) and 18MHz (17m), to close earlier than they did, with only 14 MHz
remaining open until around 2100-2200hrs. This is hastened of course by the hour change in October.

If you get the chance, make sure you take a look at the HF bands as they will be significantly better than
you have been experiencing during the summer season. Remember, 10m might even offer you some great
DX, even with 10 Watts SSB and a simple dipole or vertical.

You will also notice that on the lower HF bands such as 80 and 160m DX activity will begin to increase
during the darkness hours. Take a listen around 3.798 early mornings to the lads running four square
antenna systems working the world to prove the point. You will probably hear David G0AIX with them
using his verticals.

Have fun.

(based on an article in the RSGB newsletter)

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Do you know your Locator Square?

When you first get on the air it can be very confusing. Sooner or later someone is going to ask you what your WAB square is, or your locator, or in a contest, what zone you are in.

Location information is used a lot in amateur radio. It can be used to work out the distance between two stations, or it can be used to collect awards. In some contests you get extra points for working specific “zones”, so it pays to know where you are!

Let’s take a look at what they all mean.

“Maidenhead” or QTH locator squares

The Maidenhead or QTH locator squares are mainly used on VHF, UHF and microwaves and plot where you are. For example, the square “IO” (Italy Oscar) covers the Western part of the UK, Scotland and Ireland.

The square is then broken down into smaller numbered squares that give more information as to your whereabouts—each of these squares represents 1° of latitude by 2° of longitude. Finally, two further letters define it even more.

For example, my locator is IO70JE.

If you want to work out what square you are in the easiest way is to go to,
zoom in on the map and click where you live.

If you chase DX on 6m, 2m, 70cms or higher the chances are people will want to know this locator square.

The other way now of course is to use one of the various Apps available for the smart phones, even easier.

Worked All Britain square

The Worked All Britain Awards Group (W.A.B.) was devised by the late John Morris G3ABG in 1969.
The aim was to promote an interest in amateur radio in Britain and sponsor a series of awards based on the geography
of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

You can find out more at

But in the meantime you might want to work out what WAB square you live in.
These are based on the Ordnance Survey maps of the UK and a simple way is to go to and enter your postcode. Once you have done that you’ll see a line at the bottom of the screen that says
“Click here to convert coordinates”. If you do you will see that the sixth line down is headed “LR”, standing for “Land Ranger”.
Now just take the two letters and first two numbers and these are your WAB square. So, as a test, enter the postcode—
NR18 0XJ—and you will see that the WAB square comes out as TG12.

Put your address in and see what your WAB square is.

Also available withing some smart phone Apps too of course.

ITU Zones and CQ Zones

If you enter HF contests you may hear people exchanging “Zone” numbers. This can be very confusing as it depends
what contest you are in as to what your zone is.

For example, the ITU (International Telecommunication Union) has the UK in ITU region 27. However,
CQ Magazine has its own zones, which are used in its contests such as CQ Worldwide Contest
(the SSB contest is being held on October 26-27 in 2013 by the way, an excellent contest to check out your station’s efficiency).

The CQ zone for Western Europe is actually 14.

Just to confuse you even more, we live in IARU (International Amateur Radio Union) region 1!

The best bet is make a note of all of your locator information so that you can refer to it when operating. If using 6m, 2m
or higher you will likely be asked for your Maidenhead or QTH locator. If anyone asks for your WAB square you will
also have it to hand. And you will probably only need the zone information if operating in a contest.

This sounds complicated but in reality it is not as you only need to look things up once for your QTH as the information
will never change.

If you listen to the GB3SI repeater identification CW you will hear it send the locator on the old system that pre dated
the current Maidenhead system and it sends from memory XK63J relating to its former home at St Ives School.

Based on an article within the RSGB newsletter.

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What are those buttons for

A modern HF radio is a marvel of technology. But often they are so complex that a lot of the controls never get touched! Or if they do, people are unsure what exactly they do and use them incorrectly.

So let’s look at some of the functions on a modern HF radio and how you can use them.

Anyone coming from a CB background will be pretty familiar with the squelch control. It basically turns off the audio on the radio until a strong enough signal opens it. Squelch can be very useful (if not essential) as the continuous hiss of a blank FM channel can be very annoying.

Squelch is used somewhat less on SSB as the background noise is generally quieter, but there is no reason why you couldn’t use it. If you are monitoring a specific frequency on your radio for hours on end it can be useful to squelch the audio on SSB to help retain your sanity!

Noise Reduction

The HF bands can be quite noisy at times and digital noise reduction can be a way of making the audio easier on the ears. The best approach is to engage the noise reduction button and then advance the noise reduction gain knob until you get the effect you are looking for. If you advance it too far the chances are that you will end up with very muddy audio, sounding like someone has their head in a bucket!

Notch/Auto Notch

If you have a whistle or tone on your received signal a notch filter can be used to remove it. The tone can be due to a heterodyne of two signals mixing or someone tuning up. The approach is to switch on the notch filter and rotate the control until the tone vanishes or is attenuated. If the tone frequency changes you will need to re-adjust the control.

Some radios have an auto notch feature that can automatically track tones and remove them without you needing to touch the controls.

A notch filter can adversely affect the quality of the received audio so should not be left switched in if it is not required. Also, listening to a CW or PSK 31 transmission with auto notch engaged can be totally self-defeating as the rig does its best to remove the very signal you are trying to listen to!

Receiver Incremental Tuning or Receiver Independent Tuning is a way of changing the frequency your radio is listening to without affecting the transmit frequency. It can be very useful on SSB if someone comes back to your CQ call and is not quite on your frequency.

By engaging the RIT and tweaking the control slightly you can make their voice more intelligible. If you moved the main VFO dial the chances are that they would change their radio and you would be back where you started.

The only problem with RIT is forgetting that you have engaged it. If you then subsequently move up or down the band to call someone else you will be off frequency. So either switch it off or set it to 0.00 kHz offset

Webmaster note- Personally I think the Rit is an instrument of the devil, I avoid its use all the time. How many times have you listened to a net where several of the participants have a the RIT engaged and each are netted on a different station — chaos and unintelligibility on a large scale.Forgetting to return the control to zero once used could account for your lack of HF success with the RX shifted possibly, by up to to 5KC either way, could lead you to wonder why there are no responses to your CQ calls!


The Automatic Gain Control is often misunderstood. Received radio signals can vary wildly in their strength, from very weak to incredibly strong. With AGC the radio will try to adjust itself to deal with these vastly differing signal strengths.

On the whole it does a good job, but you can help it. Usually you can choose between fast AGC and slow AGC. This affects the speed at which the radio will adjust itself when listening to different signals. While slow or medium AGC may be fine for SSB transmissions, you may find with CW or PSK31 that you miss the first one or two characters of a transmission as the AGC fails to react quickly enough when moving from a strong signal to a weak one.

Fast AGC tends to work better with digital modes, but it is worth experimenting. AGC can be a personal thing—I prefer a slow setting.

Width Control

All rigs work in different ways, but most will let you adjust the width of the IF filter. Other older radios may have different crystal filters that have the same net effect. These effectively cut down how much of the “band” you listen to at once.

Typical values for SSB tend to be 3.6 kHz or 2.7 kHz. The first setting is a broad filter that will give you excellent received audio quality. However, if the band is busy you may find that you suffer from adjacent channel interference and the 2.7 kHz setting might be better. With most modern radios you can even narrow this down even more, but if you go much below 2.4 kHz the audio will start to deteriorate.

If your radio lets you set up three different width settings for SSB then 3.6, 2.7 and 2.4 kHz would be a good choice

For CW and digital modes you might want to opt for narrower filters. CW enthusiasts usually go for 500 Hz or 300 Hz, although modern Software Defined Radios (SDR) can even be used down to about 50 or 25 Hz on CW with no “ringing”. Other people prefer to engage a 1000 Hz filter so that they can hear other stations that might be close by, using their brain to filter out the different signals.

The correct filter for digital modes, such as RTTY and PSK 31, will depend upon the mode itself and how busy the band is. A good choice would be set up three—say 500 Hz, 300 Hz and 200 Hz—and select whatever works best for you at the time. But setting a 3.6 kHz width would also let you hear signals that are close, but not exactly on your frequency.

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Clubs new Kyham Sports shelters christened

The new tents were erected swiftly and proved the point, they really are quick erect structures.

Having the two also worked very well at the WESS Rally at Stithians.

Thanks go to Trevor G4BHD for the photos

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Christian Volle’s visit to August meeting

Hello Ken,

we returned safely home to Munich last Thursday. Thanks for the nice evening
at the CARC, I had a lot of fun. And as I said – there is no difference in the
way these club meetings run between your club and those three that I know over
here in Germany – despite the language. That’s what I like so much, you almost
feel at home when you meet foreign hams.

After meeting you we have spend quite some nice days in Cornwall. We drove
the road from St. Just to St. Ives as you recommended and we took the time
to stop at various places. Indeed a very nice route. We found that Falmouth
is a good place to stay for a holiday, even at rainy weather.

We also visited the telegraph cable museum and, what I found most interesting,
we also saw the museum at Poldhu and a few days later the rebuilt marconi shack
at Lizard Point. In both cases we met the same very nice gentleman who took
the time to explain everything. I forgot his name. He is a ham aswell and lives
in a house very close to lizard point directly at the cliff. Perhaps you know him.

However I promised to send you the spread sheet file for calculating
radio ranges
Today I found the time to modify my calculations to work with imperial units
(miles and feet), as this seems more conveniant for you. I put everything onto
my very small website for download:
Please forward this link to those who attended the talk or others who may be
interested. And please let me know if something doesn’t work.

I am very curious to see the photogaphs one of the OM shot at the club meeting.
Could you please forward them to me?

Please tell my very best regards to the CARC team! We spend an enjoyfull evening
with you! Hope to see you again one day. Tell me about your upcoming field day
events. Perhaps we can organize a sked on hf.

73 de Christian, DL7AYD

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One off offer to CRAC members

Another chance to save.

UAS Enterprises Ltd

BHI NES10-2 MK3 Noise Eliminating Speaker £75.00



The NEW NES10-2 MK3 Noise Eliminating Speaker replaces the MKII version
and removes unwanted background noise, hiss, hash, QRM, QRN, computer hash,
plasma TV interference, white noise etc from speech, so that you can hear
more clearly and listen stress free. Works accross all radio bands and is
also suitable for shortwave listening and for use in radio base stations.
The MK3 has a new rotary filter control knob on the rear of the speaker
that replaces the DIP switches that were on the MKII. This makes it much
easier to change the filter level whilst using the speaker.
The NES10-2 MK3 greatly improves the clarity and intelligibility of speech
in a variety of radio communications applications and is suitable for use
with most two-way radios as well as many other similar applications where
background noise and interference give rise to poor quality reception.
The power on/off audio bypass switch removes power from the speaker and
bypasses the audio allowing the speaker to be used as a normal extension
speaker without DSP.

  • Fully Adaptive noise cancelling
  • Power on/off switch with audio bypass
  • Noise cancellation 9 – 35dB
  • 8 user selectable noise cancelling levels
  • New rotary filter control knob
  • Compact robust speaker unit
  • Greatly improved signal to noise ratio
  • 3.5mm mono headphone socket (will drive another speaker)
  • Easy to install with adjustable mounting bracket
  • Noise Cancellation on / off switch
  • 12 – 24Vdc operation
  • Input sensitivity control
  • 2m audio lead

NES10-2MKII bhi DSP Noise eliminating Speaker with DIP




NES10-2MKII bhi DSP Noise eliminating Speaker with DIP selective filtering
settings, with new power on/off switch with audio bypass * Speaker with bhi
unique built-in fully adaptive DSP noise cancelling technology * Noise attn.
9-35dB * Dip switch settings for 8 filter settings * Power on/off switch with
audio bypass * Audio connection 3.5mm mono jack plug, 2m lead * Plugs directly
into 3.5mm speaker socket * 3.5mm mono headphone socket * Requires 12-24V DC
at 500mA max * Size 110 x 65 x 55mm * Weight 200g * Supplied with fused DC
lead * Can be used mobile with cigar adaptor (1030-VEPL) This is a combined
speaker and DSP unit that can be used with any receiver or transceiver. It
offers 8 filter settings selected via a dip switch on the back and a top mounted
on/off switch to select the DSP in and out of circuit.The power on/off switch
removes power from the speaker and bypasses the audio. This allows the speaker
to be used as a normal extension speaker without DSP. The unit offers dramatic
noise reduction enabling weak signals to be cleaned up by removing most of the
noise, audio hetrodynes are also greatly reduced. DX and weak signals can sound
just like locals. It is equally great for mobile use by reducing noise and making
speech clearer. And as a result of bhi’s unique DSP noise cancelling technology the
voice quality is superb with virtually no distortion even when there are high
levels of noise present.

01209 844859

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CRAC Rally 2013 – 7th July

A timely reminder to everyone. Rally 2013 is fast approaching and we will
be visiting the site next Saturday to manhandle the tables into position and
on site from early Sunday morning to meet and greet at first the Traders and
then our buying guests.

Doors will open at 1030am and we request that you all remember that and don’t
try to gain entry before that time. We need time first thing to allow everyone
to ready their stands for the visitors and to lend them a hand. We do not need
to be troubled by unauthorised visitors before the official start time as sorting
them out takes manpower away from more essential tasks. If you find yourself
asked to wait at the main door or to go back outside please comply with grace.
So have a lie in, don’t arrive at 9.00am and expect to come in immediately.
Opening is at 10.30am. We reserve the right to open earlier if all traders
are ready for the off and weather is particularly inclement.

Entry cost has been held at just £2.00 again this year even though the cost
of hiring the School seems to increase every year.

Opening time is 10.30 am

Items intended for sale on the bring and buy can be logged in before opening
of the show via the side entrance. Be prepared to pay a non returnable
administration fee of just 50p per item lodged for sale. This will help t
o cover our expences and deter entering numerous low value items for sale.

Whilst we take every possible precaution selecting traders for the show we
can not be held responsible for items purchased that are not fit for purpose.
So as buyers it up to you to carry out some due diligence and ensure you are
buying what you think you are buying and not a potentially expensive doorstop.

Contact details should appear within the programme and if you do have a problem
please contact the trader direct and not CRAC.

We hope to see a good crowd on the day as it is not just a trade show but an
annual social event giving everyone the chance to meet personally with and put
a face to the regular contacts you have beet talking with on a day to day basis.

So see you all there:

Cornish Radio Amateur Club Rally
Penair School

Sunday 7th July 2013 — opens 10.30am — closes when the traders
decide to pack up their wares. My suggestion is to come earlier rather
than later as in the past few years we have been packed away earlier each year.

To wet your appetite I can confirm attendance by

Henry Westlake for all your antenna, coax and hardware needs
Devon DX Group — good 2nd hand source
Worsley Communications – a local supplier of Amateur Radio equipment
Peter, formerly Garex
Kevin and Margaret from Bristol — general equipment

and more !

Refreshments will again be available from Colin’s catering van in the car park.

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RSS CVWOC Jamboree

  • Jamboree photo edits 1 26/08/2014
  • Jamboree 2014 Day 3 25/08/2014
    Showing the Show and Shine, Mk1 Golf GTI Club display, Belfast Busker, Mr T, Stone Cold Gipsy, Beth Morris, presetations and the last evening in the marquee
  • Jamboree 2014 Day 2 25/08/2014
    Around the traders area, the camping fields and the site in general.
  • Jamboree 2014 Day 1 25/08/2014
  • Jamboree 2014 day one in pictures 23/08/2014
    Click here for day one photos
  • CVWOC Jamboree 2014 11/08/2014
    Time is rushing past now and the Jamboree is now less than two weeks away! It’s time to put the pedal to the metal if you want to save some money by pre-booking your tickets via the   website paying by Paypal for your safety and convenience.   Advanced booking will close on Friday 15th […]
  • Save Money – Advanced Bookingfor CVWOC Jamboree 2014 19/06/2014
    To purchase your tickets online with payment via your Paypal account please CLICK HERE
  • Jamboree 2014 06/02/2014
    Hi everyone, here we are in February 2014 and thinking about the 2014 event in August. After the weather we have had to endure for the last few weeks, with more of the same to come, we are already praying for a warm and sunny event in August, we all deserve that at least. The […]
  • CVWOC Jamboree in pictures 29/08/2013
    From set up to the Show and Shine on Sunday here is the Jamboree in pictures and a few videos too.
  • Show and Shine results 2013 29/08/2013
    Show and Shine Results 2013: Super Class Simon Surridge- Pastel White 1968 Bay Window. Standard Air Cooled Car 1936-1978 1st- Martin Curtis-White 1967 Beetle.   2nd- Jason Bateman- Red 1969 Beetle.   Modified Air Cooled Car 1936-1978 1st- Nick Quince- Red 1969 Beetle.   2nd- Matt Edwards- Silver 1956 Oval Beetle.   Best Splitscreen 1st-Barry […]

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