Monthly Archive: September 2017

2 Days to go before we depart VK!

Niue here we come!

There is less than 36 hours to go before we leave Australia on the first leg of the journey out to Niue. The first step is the flight from Adelaide to Auckland on Monday. We will then spend Tuesday staging things in New Zealand getting ready for the Wednesday morning flight to Niue (after picking up last minute items such as groceries etc that are hard to obtain on the island). We should arrive on Niue Wednesday afternoon VK/ZL time, which will actually be Tuesday in Niue (as we cross the dateline on the way). I don’t expect to be operating on Tuesday Niue time as I will need to reach the Niue Telecom office to collect and pay for my license before I start. I suspect I will run out of time before they close, considering getting the family settled in our holiday accommodation comes first (and that the logistics of carting the gear from the airport to the house might require two trips!)

When will I be on air?

If all goes to plan, by sun-down on Wednesday (Niue time) the first signals from E6AG should be heard on at least 40-10m (that’s Thursday the 14th of September in VK/ZL). Operation should then continue for 12 days before we pack up and start the journey home.

Operating times will vary. As this is first and foremost a family holiday I wont be on 24/7 and there will be some days where I am simply not on the air. The hope however is to be operating after approximately 0700 UTC through to 1200 UTC most evenings. I also will try to be active most mornings between 1600 and 1900 UTC. Days when we are just lounging around the house will see those hours expand significantly. In particular I will be active in the CQ WW RTTY contest on the 21st/22nd and that will be a 24hr operation.

I know I wont be able to answer all requests for QSOs and I will apologies in advance if I miss a request. I simply dont know how hectic it will really get out there. As a one man holiday setup, on air time is necessarily limited so I will ask that if you get a positive contact with me on a given band/mode that you dont come back for a repeat on the same combination. I would like to give out as many ATNOs as I can! Hopefully when I run one of these again I can entice some friends to come and help man radios and on air time wont be quite as restricted – it was simply not to be this time (despite efforts to the contrary).

Special things to look out for will be the FT8 activity as well as some SSTV pictures from Niue showing the best sights the Island has to offer! Details of how to contact E6AG on FT8 have been added under “Operating” on the website! Please take a read of these and follow those instructions to maximise the chance of everyone getting an FT8 contact with a new DXCC.

Finally, please also consult the operating pages on this site and abide by the DX Code of conduct. If I am calling specific regions please respect that and wait your turn – unless you can see I am getting little traffic. I will be focusing at certain times on trying to make contact as far as Europe – a very difficult path from E6, so I will ask the Pacific rim nations to standby when I do attempt to work the Europeans. I do not expect them to be easy to reach.

Contact whilst on Niue?

I will be trying to keep this page updated as well as monitoring the expedition mailbox e6ag @ bigpond.com whilst on the island. I will also post from time to time using the expedition Facebook and Twitter pages but cant make any guarantees as to the reliability of the Internet service we will find. If you do hear me, please spot me on the clusters so others can find me in case the Internet is down.

73 and look forward to working you all as E6AG in a few days time!

10 Days to Go: 80/160m Confirmed included!

It’s official – I will have some low band capability now on the trip. Thanks again to Steve VK5SFA, I will be taking a 160/80/40m trapped dipole with me that I can string in between the coconut trees! While not a fantastic DX antenna, it will at least give me something to radiate on the low bands that should at least reach VK/ZL if not the west coast of USA and Japan. I used a straight 80m dipole when I was on Kangaroo Island (OC-139) last year and was able to work JT65 into Central and North America, so I have some belief that this will at least allow those in the Pacifc Rim countries to work me on those bands.

Coupled with the KAT500 tuner, I should be able to deliver 400W across 75/80m and 160m. Expect to find me at least on JT65 and possibly FT8, and during the CQ WW RTTY Contest I will also try 80m RTTY!