Current MM0TFU QSL card. MM0TFU + shack.
Thanks for looking me up on QRZ.com. I was born and raised on the Isle of Arran, but I currently live in the small village of Crosshill, South Ayrshire, which is in the south west of Scotland, about 50 miles from Glasgow. There are only about 600 people living in the village.You can see lots more photographs of the village by clicking on the following link. http://www.geograph.org.uk/search.php?i=10941403
I have been interested in radio since I was quite young, when a friend gave me an old Eddystone 840A receiver which I used to listen to the Marine, Aircraft and Amateur bands. I was a keen a shortwave listener for many years, before passing the RAE and becoming a licenced amateur radio operator in 2002.
At present my equipment consists of a JRC JST-245 (HF+6m),Yaesu FT-847, FT-857D, FT-8800 (mobile in my Toyota pick-up truck), and my trusty old JRC NRD-525 receiver. I also have a Kenwood TS-480hx which I use for portable operations. I installed a 30 foot crank-up tower a few years ago and currently have a Vortex Antennas 3 element 10m yagi on it. I have plans to install a 40 foot mast for larger HF antennas soon. Below is a photo of the 30 foot mast with a M2 6M5X.
I sometimes operate /P from the Isle of Arran when I am back home visiting family and friends, and I keep a Hustler 5BTV HF Vertical antenna there, to allow me to get on air quickly. I always try to be home on Arran for the IOTA Contest at the end of July. I usually operate from my parents house near the village of Blackwaterfoot, which is on the west side of the Island. Again you can follow this link for photographs of the area. http://www.geograph.org.uk/browse.php?p=565705
Sunset on west coast of Arran (EU-123).
I recently installed my FT-857 in my vehicle and have been enjoying operating HF Mobile. I had an ATAS-120 sitting around doing nothing, and while it's not the largest antenna in the world, the results have been surprising to say the least! It's fun to be able to work JA's on 15m on the drive into work in the morning, and then work North America on the way home. I mounted it on a chunk of 4" x 2" aluminium channel bolted on to the bling-bars, using a Breedlove Mount. I have a second Breedlove Mount for 3/8" types.
Operating HF mobile is great fun, and I have some plans in the pipeline to give me a bigger "sting" in the very near future.
MM0TFU/M -Toyota Hilux Invincible 200
Breedlove antenna mounts - one for 3/8" base and the other for SO-239.
Turnberry Lighthouse 2004
I also enjoy participating in VHFand UHFContests as part of a small contest group, the Clyde Coast Contest Club. We operate from Windy Standard hill, which is 2300 feet (697m)asl, and lies on the Ayrshire/ Dumfries and Galloway border. It has proved to be an excellent site, but being so high and exposed, the weather can be quite extreme, even in summer. Below are a couple of pictures of the mobile shack on Windy Standard. As you can see, we are not exactly a "SOTA" type operation, as we drive to the hilltop, and operate from a trailer. A large generator provides sufficient power to run the station and several luxuries, such as a fan heater and microwave oven.
50 MHz contest station on Windy Standard hill IO75vg
432MHz contest. Mobile shack courtesy of GM4NFC.
VHF Field Day -July 2013 - 2x5 element 70MHz Powabeam antennas
70MHz Contest July 2013
For portable operations, I have a Transworld Antennas TW2010 Adventurer which is a truly remarkable little antenna. As you can see it stands around 9 feet tall on it's own quadrapod stand and it all packs into a bag no larger than a golf bag. It can be assembled in about 2 minutes and when packing it away, it honestly takes longer to roll up the coax than it takes to disassemble the antenna! It performs fantastically well, and it was used for our club ILLW event in 2011. With 100w, we worked KH6, JA, KL7 and lots of slightly less exotic DX. It works extremely well and the build quality is excellent. If you need a portable antenna, then you should check out the Transworld.
The Transworld TW2010 near Blackwaterfoot, Arran EU123, and at Turnberry Lighthouse 2011.
I upload my log to Logbook of the World regularly. I have found LoTW to be well worth the trouble involved in setting it up. If I can manage to set it up, then anyone can! LoTW is now my preferred method of QSL'ing, but if you really need a paper card, then send your card to me and I'll send you one in return. A contribution towards postage would be appreciated, but please don't send IRC's. They are being phased out here in the UK from early 2013. I no longer do eQSL. It's just too time consuming.
I also play the bagpipes, having learned to play when I was about 13 years old. I served as an infantry soldier and Piper with 2nd Battalion Scots Guards from 1982 until 1985 and the picture above was taken in 1984 when I was stationed in Cyprus (ZC4-land). I am on the extreme left of the picture.
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