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2018 ARRL Field Day

06/26/2018 | K6EI

The West Valley Amateur Radio Association returned to Mora Hill
above Los Altos, Ca for field day. We used K6EI for our main
call and W6ZZZ for GOTA. This year we were 14A, QRP, battery and
solar panel powered. We had the luxury of lots of panels, so we
were able to have a 120V utility for running our computers. We
also had enough extra power to run our fans etc., as the
temperatures on Saturday were in the high 90s.

Note, we are not permitted to operate generators at night, so we
don't use them at all.

We were in category 14ABattery with 3 CW stations, 3 SSB stations, and
2 digital stations on HF.  Stations on VHF and UHF filled the rest of the
transmitter slots. We had separate 4-band (10/15/20/40) yagi antennas for CW, SSB, and digital with triband filters to allow simultaneous use of 10/15/20. We also had separate 80M dipoles for each mode.
GOTA had its own set of antennas. Getting all this set up took
the better part of the daylight on Friday. (Thanks ARRL for the
rule change that permits early setup Friday when it is cooler.)

We minimize interference between stations on the same band by
careful antenna placement, running QRP, using Elecraft and Flex
gear, and providing adequate voltage to the radios. We could see
our CW stations on the P3 while operating digital, but they were
just strong CW stations and caused no interference.

Our networked N1MM logging system lets us cheer every time we
pass a QSO count milepost, as well as providing lots of backup
for the logs.

Our GOTA operation was quite popular, with QSOs 150% of last
year. Since we are next to a popular trail in the San Antonio
Open Space Preserve, we get a lot of bicycle visitors. Some know
about ham radio and others have never heard of it.

It appears our main operation QSO count was slightly ahead of
last year, but I haven't seen a full comparison yet.

We got lots of people on the air, with some trying new modes for
the first time. I counted 21 people who actually made it into
the group photo. Everyone had a good time and went home tired.

-- AE6JV


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