Long Island Recreation Park VKFF-1724

Long Island Murray Bridge had never been activated until Pual VK5PAS, Ivan VK5HS, and Danny VK5DW joined forces. Check out Paul’s blog here.

vk5pas

Today (Tuesday 16th April 2019), me, Ivan VK5HS and Danny VK5DW, activated the Long Island Recreation Park VKFF-1724 on the mighty Murray River, at Murray Bridge.  This was the first time that the park had been activated for the World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program.  The park is located about 80 km east of Adelaide.

Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 4.54.10 pm.png Above:- Map showing the location of the Long Island Recreation Park VKFF-1724.  Map courtesy of Protected Planet.

The Long Island Recreation Park is 8 hectares (20 acres) in size and encompasses the full extent of Long Island in the Murray River, immediately east of the city of Murray Bridge.  According to the Ngarrindjeri aboriginal people, the island represents a lentlin (spear) thrown by Ngurunderi at Ponde (the fish) as it made it’s way to Wellington creating the river.

Screen Shot 2019-04-09 at 1.12.09 pm Above:- Aerial shot of the Long Island Recreation Park, looking south east.  Image courtesy of google maps

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VK5 National & Conservation Parks Award 2019

River SceneWow what a great time members of the Riverland Radio Club Inc. had activating the Murray River National Park for this the 6th year anniversary of the VK5 National & Conservations Parks Award weekend, sitting along side the magnificent Murray.

Op LocThis was to be a club activity for the Saturday, March 23rd. Members interested in park activations, and those newly licenced, were encouraged to come along to have a go and if they wished get a bit of mentoring from those with a bit more experience.

VK5HS Ivan booked campsite ‘Black Box 3’ in the Lyrup section of the Murray River National Park.

Op Loc2

Ivan was the first to arrive at about 0800hrs local and got down to the critical business of getting the billy boiling. VK5FVIN David who is one of the clubs newest members, doing a club Foundation Course recently, was there eager to learn. Shortly after VK5DW Danny, VK5LA Andy and VK5TRM Rob had all come wondering into camp.

OK so with coffee in hand, thanks to Ivan, Danny got into pushing up a linked dipole for 10m through 80m with a plan to start on 40m. With the dipole atop the 7m squid pole and the ends draped out to about 2m it was time to open the HF go kit.

Cool… all go time, but NO! All seems a bit quiet, checking just a bit further and BUGGER. Faulty antenna, open circuit on one leg. Thank goodness we had another, so after a quick swap out we were up and running. A couple check ins to the clubs BRL Net from Ivan and David confirmed we were good to go.

5FVIN & 5PEDanny smashed out CQ Parks for a while and found it a bit of hard going but got enough to register. Good thing it was slow going as he was using VK Port-a-Log for the first time.

David, a new call, wanted to have a look at an Icom IC-718 for which VK5PE Pete obliged by bringing one along. We powered it up and threw the mic at David. He was a bit nervous at first explaining he will just watch for a bit. Pete was having none of that and with just a little encouragement from us David got on HF for the first time as a HAM. The photo above shows Pete (right) mentoring David (left) through making the contacts. David ended up making about a dozen contacts and by the end of that he was sounding more and more confident and fluent. Good work David, well done!

IMG_8401Andy, probably our clubs most prolific parks operator, had set up a station about 30m away using an end fed antenna and his Icom IC-7300. He was operating on 20m for a while, and yes the 2 stations being so close caused a bit of issues but we were all having a lot of fun anyway. Here’s Andy getting cracking signals on 20m, the signal so good the 7300 case was bulging on every syllable. 

IMG_8405VK5FDOG Pongo another new call had arrived by now for a bit of a look see, asking loads of questions and meeting most of the other members face to face for the first time. He’s been a little active calling into the clubs BRL Net a couple times.

Back over on the other side the second linked dipole was still working fine but couldn’t do 80m… so down it come and up goes a third linked dipole that could do 80m (thanks to VK5PE Pete). We got a few solid contacts with VK5PAS Paul, VK5FMAZ Marija, and others.

Lyrup Flats BirdIvan had set up a crossed 2m/70cm yagi for satellite operations so the new calls could have a look at how that works, His set up includes full duplex so he demonstrated how you could tell how well you were getting into the satellite by the quality of your own returning voice. Three passes were accessed during the day with contacts made as far as ZL. Even David had a crack making a few contacts on the birds… I think he was just a little chuffed with himself.

Rob had a bit of Sonde RX gear with him so he demonstrated that as well to round out a bit of variety in he hobby.

By now, with 7 club members there and lunch time approaching, Ivan started to prep for the lunch cook up. Andy had sorted the cutting of the spuds and onions, Ivan cut some tomatoes, and all these goodies with the mandatory snags and chops on bread topped with a homebrew, of a different kind, tomato sauce from Ivan’s personal stock.

IMG_8406By this time VK5TS Rob and partner VK5FSGP Sandy, yet another new call, had also arrived. Sandy had muscled in on the IC-718 (OK it was free at the time) and quickly made a couple contacts. One with VK5FMAZ Marija, announcing that now the ladies had control of the radios.

VK5MRE Ron, fresh from the morning club BRL Net Control duties and other domestic matters, called in on the club 2m repeater for directions. There’s a campsite 3 and a Black Box 3 so he was advised he just needed to come just a little further along the track… and he made it just in time to join us for lunch.

IMG_8412We pulled stumps at about 1530hrs local by which time 10 club members had attended. For our little club this was terrific and what a great time we had. We would like to thank all the contacts we made for being out there and helping to make our day that much more fun.

I hope you enjoyed our story and thanks for reading.

73’s from the Riverland Radio Club Inc.

Assessment Services Restored

Thumbs_Up_Skin-Color.pngGood news! After a short lull in examination services due to a transition to a new provider, the Riverland Radio Club Inc. is back in the position to provide assessments.

We currently have 2 Club Endorsed Assessors registered with the new provider, Australian Maritime Collage (AMC), with another couple or so in the process.

And if you didn’t know, our Club, through our Endorsed Assessors, offers to successful candidates from one of our assessment activities some Club incentives. This includes:

  • Club General Membership for the remainder of the current subscription year. More details HERE.
  • Club General Members also get a discount incentive with Berri Betta Home Living JAYCAR Authorised Stockist.

For a bit more info about our assessment services and licensing stuff have a look HERE. If you want you can also have a look at our Club Endorsed Assessors or the Foundation Course & AMC-AR Assessments page.

RRC Presidents Message

Well what a year it’s been for our modest little Riverland Radio Club.

This year we have seen our Club members engaged in all sorts of cool stuff, WX Balloon chasing, Project HORUS chases, more activity in the Parks’n’Peeks program, project building, and even back into JOTO. There’s been Satellite activity, we’ve run a successful Foundation Course, assisted in the Riverland Paddling Marathon, and of course the staples of the RRC BRL Gathering, BRL Riverland Nets, WIA re-Broadcasts and so on. For such a modest club I think we punch well above our weight, for which I am proud.

All this good stuff must come with acknowledgements to all those that call into the nets, join our members on air when out and about in the parks, jump into chase cars, run tracking stations, etc. So thanks to all those both members and non-members who have been a part of this year for us.

On the administrative front we’ve almost finalised implementing a new Club Constitution, the website saw a rework, we’ve introduced Berri Betta Home Living – Jaycar as a Club Sponsor (where Regular Members can enjoy a 15% discount), we now have a new structure that includes a number of coordinators, we have ran Foundation course and started new HAMs on their own exciting journey, there is now free Club Membership to new HAMs that undertake a RRC facilitated assessment, just to name a few things.

Our website continues to grow in popularity. We have smashed all previous records, and not by just a little bit! These numbers show some awesome growth… take a look:

  • gold-trophy_1284-1735Views:
    • 6538 – YTD
    • 3180 – 2017
  • Visitors:
    • 1687 – YTD
    • 476 – 2017
  • Likes:
    • 209 – YTD
    • 0 – 2017
  • Comments:
    • 84 – YTD
    • 1 – 2017

Gotta be happy with that growth!

All in all a pretty good year for our Club I reckon, which brings me to a heart felt and special thank-you to our members. I recognise that each member has contributed what they could and I ask for no more that that. Well done all of you.

In closing I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone the happiest possible holiday season, and hope that 2019 brings everyone a very safe and joyful year.

Cheers and 73 from Riverland Radio Club, and

VK5DW Danny, President

Merry Christmas all

2019 BRL Gathering Registrations

Saturday, 6th of April, 2019

Ok Folks, come one come all, it’s on again, the BRL Gathering for 2019 is on Saturday, the 6th of April, at the same sensational location, famous for its picturesque setting, Fantastic Hospitality, Great Food and Cold Beer.

ONLINE REGISTRATIONS NOW CLOSED

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Lunch –  Lunch at the Hotel is a must! Check out the menu and get your taste buds excited for April. The Hotel’s food is renowned for its quality and value!

*Dogs are welcome at the Overland corner Hotel*

More 2019 Gathering details here.

RRC Welcomes 3 New Hams

On December 1st the Riverland Radio Club held a Foundation course presented by Rob VK5TRM and Ivan VK5HS.

Robert VK5TRM delivered the Foundation course to the 3 eager potential new Amateur operators. The power point presentation was delivered, as the candidates had all been sent the study material prior the course and had all purchased a copy of  the Wireless Institute of Australia ” Entry into Amateur Radio” the course proceeded along in a timely manner. The candidates asked for explanations to clarify anything they had trouble understanding as we progress through the course. The mentoring of the candidates prior the course helps towards running a successful course.

Mid afternoon the time came for the serious part of the day, the exam papers were presented to the candidates, Rob explained the process on how the exam was to be conducted. With the clock set for the 30 minute exam the 3 very nervous candidates proceeded to attempt to answer the 25 multi chose questions (I am never sure who is the most nervous, the candidates or the examiners).

The time was up pens down Ladies and gentlemen, Ivan collected the papers and proceeded the check and mark them. Rob setup the practical component of the course and commenced the session demonstrating the various requirements of operating a foundation station. Once I had completed the marking of the papers we swapped roles and Rob doubled checked the results. I continued on with the practical session.

With the practical session completed we were able to advise the candidates of the outcome of their attempt to join the hobby of amateur radio. We are please to announce all 3 were successful in obtaining a ‘F’ call. 

Rob and I then started the paper work, with this all filled out we congratulated them on a job well done.

IMG_4443Rob and I then announced to the successful 3, the RRC offers free membership for the remainder of the member subscription year to persons undertaking a RRC Facilitated Assessment activity. With this membership comes the added advantage of receiving a RRC Membership Card, which when presented at Berri Betta Home Living, a JayCar Authorised Stockist, a discount will apply on non-discounted JayCar product.

It is our job as seasoned hams to mentor the new hams to the hobby, it is easy to get new ‘F’ calls. It is much harder to retain their interest long term and assist their journey through our great hobby.

RRC would like to thank  Peter VK5PE whom provided the venue in Renmark & assisted Rob & myself.

RRC would like to introduce Sandy, David and Stephen to our great hobby. Please listen out and welcome them when they get on air with their new call signs.

Regards Ivan VK5HS.

Berri Betta Sponsors RRC!!!

***  NEWS FLASH  NEWS FLASH  NEWS FLASH  ***

Berri Betta Home Living – Member Incentive Program

Berri Betta - JaycarWith huge thanks to the team of Berri Betta Home Living our local JAYCAR Authorised Stockist, we can announce a new incentive program for Riverland Radio Club Regular Members.

Regular Members can enjoy a 15% discount on JAYCAR lines, excluding already discounted items.

Head to the “Membership” page and find out more about our membership.

***  NEWS FLASH  NEWS FLASH  NEWS FLASH  ***

New Site Page – ‘Foundation Course & Assessment’

flcoverWe thought we might try and make entering into the world of Amateur Radio and radio experimentation a bit simpler, so we have added a new page to our site.

The new page provides all (we think) the information an interested person might need to understand how to go about getting into radio.

The page talks about the process, how much everything costs, where to get the learning material, how you can be supported. As I said we think we’ve got it covered.

If your interested have a look by clicking on the book image or click HERE. Or you can hunt it down under the ‘Callsigns and Licencing’ menu heading above.

BRL Net goes Portable

This morning Ron VK5MRE took the Riverland Radio Club BRL Net portable with his newly home brewed linked dipole.

Ron made the linked dipole as part of a Club tech night project for himself, and with a helping hand from Rob VK5TRM to get it all tuned up a few days back Ron thought it time to test out his handy work. So linked dipole and squid pole in one hand and radio under the arm off he went.

VK5MRE Portable - Lake BonneyAs you can see from the photo here he was in a beautiful location along side the terrific Lake Bonney, Barmera. What a view!!!

Based on my very quick and flying check in to the group this morning it seemed to working an absolute treat, probably better than from his home QTH but we won’t tell Ron that!

Gotta say though I can’t see a deck chair, I think he might have had a bit more comfort than that!

I trust Ron had fun out there near the lake with the 16 stations that checked in, congratulations Ron on building the antenna and getting it on the air, and in a terrific setting too boot. Well done mate!

Danny VK5DW