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

Saturday 22nd June was the Open University’s Open Day, which takes place biannually. The last one saw the O.U.’s 25’th anniversary, and we put on an extensive display using the callsign GB25OU. This year was very low key from our point of view, and we did not organise any displays as such due to staff members being fully committed to other exhibits. However we were very pleased to welcome one of our student members again, Paul G1ZCY from Birmingham. Paul spent most of the afternoon in the shack, using the club call on 20m SSB. He made contacts ranging from GB80CS (Milton Keynes Scout camp), throughout Europe, and over to Canada and the U.S.A.

So far this year we have shown a number of lunch time videos, starting with GM3HAT’s video explaining the theory and practice of the Crossed Field Aerial. We have also rented from the RSGB ‘Getting Started in Amateur Satellites’, ‘Sollomon Island Dxpedition’, ‘The Universe’, and the audio tape ‘500kHz The End is Nigh’. The next session is booked for Monday 29th July at 12.30pm in N2028 Venables Building, when we will be showing two videos. Firstly ‘CQ Field Day’, setting up and operating a field day station to win - California style. The second video is ‘Classic Manoeuvres’ which shows The Red Arrows aerial (as in sky, not antenna!) display team on their 1983 tour of North America. Anyone is welcome to attend. Local members are informed by Email, packet or telephone. Anyone who hasn’t been informed in the past and wishes to be, should contact Fraser Robertson at Walton Hall (01908 655158), or Email We continue to meet informally on the first Wednesday of each month from 12.30pm in the Pavilion Bar, and of course each Thursday lunch time in the shack.

Following the AGM we applied to the O.U. Club for financial help towards the purchase of VHF and UHF amplifiers, and a ladder for aerial maintenance. Subsequently we decided to upgrade the 2m rig rather than add a power amp. to the old 10W Icom. The IC245 was sold via the Internet to LY2MW in Lithuania of all places, and I’m pleased to report that the parcel arrived there safely. We have recently purchased a second hand Trio TR9130 25W multimode, which appears to work very well, and is far more ‘user friendly’ than the Icom. We are still looking for a suitable second hand UHF (70cm) amplifier. Hopefully we will be buying a ladder in the very near future, although it’s proving difficult to get the size we need without paying for a very expensive industrial type.

Back in March a group of us made a trip over to Bletchley Park to meet up with members of the Milton Keynes & District ARS. This proved to be an interesting and enjoyable evening. We had a look at their club room and shack facilities, where OUARC member Tom G3LMX has been busy installing ATV equipment. Towards the end of the evening Dave White G3ZPA treated us to a guided tour of one of the museum rooms, showing us a wide variety of radio and related equipment from WW2, and from the Diplomatic Wireless Service.

On the packet front, Ian recently installed our 386 in the ‘node cupboard’, running TCP/IP software under Linux. He is currently waiting for some new software, and the 286 has been temporarily put back into service. He has had problems getting the third serial port to talk to the AX25 node PC, but hopefully that will be resolved shortly. A new TCP/IP hub and mailbox are planned for the Milton Keynes area, so it may be that we will move off the 144.625MHz user frequency, and set up a dedicated link to the new hub. The 70cm rigs have had their annual tweak to compensate for frequency drift in the hot weather!

The O.U. Club will soon have their own Web pages, which will provide information on all their affiliated clubs, and a link will therefore be made to our own pages. Thanks to Ian G0TLB for maintaining our pages at URL:

We plan to attend the boot sale at Bletchley Park again in September, and may possibly also make the one at Rugby on 28th July. We have a lot of ‘junk’ to clear, and it will be good to regain some storage space and make a few quid at the same time. As usual we are always happy to accept donations if you happen to be having a clear out.

There has been little change over at the shack except for the installation of the new 2m rig. The damaged 40m traps have been removed and a single band 80m dipole is now in place. Plans to move the entire field research site are continuing, and it is most likely we will have to move within the next couple of years. Because of this it would be unwise for us to embark on any major aerial projects over there in the meantime. Hopefully we will end up better off at the end of the day, as the present mast is not ideally situated, but no doubt a lot of work will be required to achieve that.

Welcome to new member Stan G0VJJ, who is also Chairman of the nearby Bedford club. Stan came over recently to visit the shack with Tom G0PSU, and also came to our last Wednesday lunch time meet. He is very active on 20m SSB where he regularly works his cousin in the States, and a group of Russian amateur friends. Stan hopes to get over occasionally to use the club station. He is learning the Russian language and is preparing some information on the O.U. in Russian to put out over the air!

That’s about it for now. Any items for the next newsletter to Fraser please. Have a good summer! 73…

Contact: Adrian Rawlings