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NEWS LETTER no:13    

G0OUR Affiliated to the OU Club and the Radio Society of Great Britain

This news letter follows fairly soon after the previous one (for a change!), and is intended mainly to give an update as to what was discussed at the recent AGM, for the benefit of those who were unable to attend. A copy of the minutes can be obtained from the Secretary, Ted Fountaine G0CGC, Estates Division, Walton Hall. If there is a red cross in the top right hand corner of this news letter it means your subs for 1996 are due. Your continued support of the club would be appreciated. Many thanks to those who have already paid.

A number of people at the AGM felt that the Thursday lunch time meetings in the shack were not very conducive to members gathering and having a natter, mainly due to the lack of space and the mutual interference with anyone operating the station. We have in the past held occasional get togethers, for example in the Pavilion extension, but these were generally fairly formal meetings arranged to discuss specific projects. It was therefore decided that we would now hold regular informal get togethers. These will be held on the first Wednesday of each month in the Pavilion Bar, kicking off around 12.30pm. The first of these meetings will be on the sixth of March. The Thursday lunch time meetings will continue, and members are encouraged to make use of the club shack then, and at any other time they fancy.

We also plan to show videos from time to time. The RSGB have a wide variety of these available for hire by radio clubs for a very modest fee, with subjects ranging from ‘An Introduction to Amateur Radio’, through to aerial design, satellite working, Dxpeditions etc. These will generally be shown at lunch times, probably in room N2028 Venables Building. It was suggested that we may be able raise money for club funds by charging non members a small fee for attending, we’ll see how that goes. We will inform the local radio club (MKDARS) where possible in the hope that some of their members can join us. While on the subject, an evening trip to MKDARS is being organised. They now have permanent club rooms in Bletchley Park, including a well equipped station and demonstrations of war time radio activities.

It would be helpful if local members could let us know their Email address, or telephone number, if they wish to be informed of these events, so that they can be contacted at shorter notice than is possible via these newsletters. If you think we may not have your contact information, please contact Fraser Robertson on 01908 655158, or Email

As far as projects for this year are concerned, we plan to improve our VHF and UHF aerials over at the shack. We have most of the hardware required, all we need is some co-ordinated effort and a bit of decent weather. Hopefully the new Wednesday get togethers should help with the former. We have just submitted a bid to the O.U Club for help with the purchase of a new ladder to replace the one that we had stolen last year. We have also asked for help to purchase second hand linear amplifiers for the 2m and 70cm rigs, both of which only put out a nominal ten Watts. The start of the O.U. Club’s financial year is changing to the first of August from this year onwards, and we will be given the opportunity to make a further bid for funds then. As usual we hope to do some fund raising ourselves to supplement the money raised from subscriptions.

There has for some time been a question mark hanging over the future of the Field Research Site (where our shack is located), and more recently the rumour that part of it may be used for car parking has turned out to be true. At the January meeting of the Field Site Users Group it was announced that the O.U. is negotiating the purchase of the land immediately to the south of the existing field site, with a view to setting up a permanent long term research site there. If all this comes off existing users of the site, including ourselves, will be relocated. None of this is certain yet, but it does open up some interesting possibilities, and headaches.

Not much has changed on the equipment / aerial front since the last news letter, apart from discovering that the home made 40m coaxial traps are not TL922 proof! These will be looked at shortly and either repaired or replaced. A temporary sloping vertical is currently available for 40m and gives good world wide contacts. This aerial has also been tried on 80m, but does not appear to out perform the high dipole, even on DX contacts.

Likewise not much has happened packet wise, although the worm hole experiments are proving to be very successful. Ian is still sorting out the new 386 which will use our second USCC card to provide TCP/IP radio ports, with an RS232 link to the OU node. The link to Chinnor, Oxon., failed again, this time due to a dry joint between the driver and pa stage, so fortunately that was rectified quite quickly.

A number of student members have already indicated that they will be attending the O.U. Open Day, and hopefully they will have time to use the club station. More information on that will follow nearer the time. That’s about all the news for now. 73...

Contact: Adrian Rawlings