Thursday, July 09, 2020

Lots more VHF activity in Melbourne compared to Sydney

Since moving to the new home here in Melbourne I've been trying to get some antennas up. I've purchased a vertical for 2m and 70cm but so far two antenna installers have not been keen to climb on the roof here and put it up. One says he'll come back when the weather has been dry for enough time for the metal roof not to be slippery.

In the interim, I've mounted a painter's pole to the fence and put the vertical up in the back yard.

I sat outside last night (a Wednesday) and listened around on 2m. Amazing amount of activity compared to Sydney - perhaps it’s because Sydney is very hilly and not so good for VHF.

From 20:00 there was an active net on 147.250 FM. Peter, VK3RV could be heard direct! I heard the WIA news broadcast on 147.175 FM. At 20:20 I tuned to the MERC net on 146.700 FM.

I've read that there is an SSB net on 144.100 and I listened and called at 20:30 but heard nothing.

Tuning around I found an active net on 144.150 which VK3MQ referred to as the “150 net”. I could receive VK3MQ very well and when he moved his beam he came up to S9. No other stations were strong though.

It wasn’t freezing outside last night but not an ideal operating position as I have to bring the gear in after use in case of rain.

While out getting some permitted COVID exercise this morning I noticed this amazing antenna on Clarke Avenue, Northcote. I will try to figure out who it is.

Something to aspire to? I'll be happy if I can get coax from my radio room to the back yard for a small dipole.

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