On the weekend of 20th/21st October 2007 I helped at the JOTA (Jamboree On The Air) event for the 7th Banstead Scout Group with the callsign GB50BS (Golf Bravo Fifty Bravo Sierra) or Banstead Scouts.
We had 4 sessions (2 Saturday & 2 Sunday) for the Scouts, Cubs, Beavers & Brownies to attend. Various activities were laid on. These included VHF (2M) and HF (mainly 80M & 17M) contacts to pass greeting messages to, Morse code practice. They also built an electronic kit.
Most built a simple Badge based around a battery box with a colour changing LED & a Dove on the front. A few of the older children built slightly more complex kits.
One of the Scout Leaders also brought the pictured cake with the 50th Jota Anniversary image printed onto it. (And it was delicious!)
As I stayed overnight at the hall after a late Chinese Meal we had a HF radio change and started slowly on the HF bands in the evening. Eventually after working TM2RWC things picked up enough to have a pile up for about an hour. (At this time I don’t have the log sheet, but in time will post some highlights soon
James MØBOV and myself went out to “The Ridge, Warlingham” to operate from the car park, James from his Car, and myself on the bench. Each time we go out to operate one has HF, and the other 2m. This time I had HF.
The external battery unit mentioned in my blog before we quickly retired. I think it has had it’s day, so was left with the internal battery and 20w max output. Not a great start.
Once the Sandpiper vertical was up I tuned to 80m and looked for some activity. There was 2 interesting nets in the UK. One was the WAB (Worked All Britain) group and the other an Operator using Balloons & Kites to support his antenna.
Unfortunately I think due to my limited power, neither could hear me, so I spent couple of hours just listening round 80m.
I spent ages listening to Roger G4ROJ and his Balloon/Kite setup. Loads of stations were calling in to this unusual operation setup.
I wasn’t the only one with power problems, as James later got bad reports on 2m SSB. Over weekend he did some tests and found out his battery charger for the 70Ah battery he has in his boot, wasn’t charging. This resulted in it only being able to supply him <12v. One down side of this was he lost out getting a OE5 in his log book.
So final result was James working only 12 stations on 2m, and me none on HF. But we both learnt lessons as always and that was probably our final Radio Session of 2007 portable operating.