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Thanks to all who turned up early to open the Mill and the crew who immediately set-to to build GB1BWM Special Event Station. The first part of the setting up is the erection of the 40’ masts. With a good team this does not take too long. As you see below, we have a collinear on the top for 2m. All the guys and halyards in place it was time to raise (in the first instance) a half-sized G5RV antenna.

Others in the team erected the gazebo operating tent and assembled the radio kit.

The radio kit consisted of my usual Yaesu FT-840 with tuner for 80/40/20m and the FT-897 for 2m. We were up and running with our first QSO with GB2DWM Duloe Mill at St. Neots by 0900 GMT on 80m. Radio conditions were not good. We tried 80/40/20m to try and find stations to work.

Right: Chris G7LWV had a go, Geoff G8TEC had a go, below all with varying success.

Norman G4BPN From Hythe came over and admired the setup. We had our club sign hung above the tent but it failed to bring us many QSOs from the outside world. To the rear of the tent we had teas & coffees as required.

I obviously talked too much, looks as if I was making a point to myself whilst the Windmill looked on placidly. There was not enough wind to turn the sails and even my hot-air was not enough to stir it into action. Because of the lack of QSOs there was always a question over the efficiency of the aerial system so I changed the aerial from the ½ G5RV to an Off Centre Fed Dipole but still only a few QSOs. Later on Sunday the aerial doctors arrived an did a lot of testing.

To the left we can see Alan G8PIQ & Duncan G3RQF analysing the results of the analyser. They agreed that the aerials were crap and that was where the problem probably lay.


We made a total of 41 QSOs over the weekend split between 80/40/20 & 2m but the conditions were against us and as now decided, the aerials were not up to scratch. Time to build a W3DZZ!

Thanks to the people of the Mill for being our hosts.

Also to:

Geoff G8TEC, Chris G7LWV, Quintin M1ENU, Duncan G3RQF, Paul G6MCX, Ted G0BHK, Bob 2E0CZK, Andy G4JNT for all their help and to Keith G7NKZ for calling in and having a chat.

Thanks to Ted G0BHK for all of the pictures without which this would be a very lean page!

We have been invited back next year by the mill people, we must have behaved ourselves!

Hope I haven’t forgotten anyone…