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Many many thanks to all those who had a go this weekend.

This was my second go at a one man DXpedition to 3A (or any DXpedition come
to think of it). This time I had my act together.

Had I timed things a little better and tried a little harder I might have
made WAC in two afternoons. Unfortunately besides Ham radio (and the YL of
course) I have some other high priorities in my life: red wine, French
cheese and, well, any French cooking at all as long as it doesn't consist of
pond life. So I didn't make it to the mic as much as I'd thought...

As it was I made 15 countries including some US, Australia, lots of Japan,
lots of Europe and it turns out I missed South Africa by the skin of my
teeth. No South America heard at all.

Anyway, I must apologise to everyone who tried or waited or listened for me
but failed. Conditions were very changeable. In the end I gave up on three
occasions when squint was bad and another bottle of vin rouge & a plate of
fromage appeared.

It may not sound very PC, but I'm afraid my 50W and 12dBic on the U uplink
was most certainly not enough all the time particularly at squints > 10 deg
or so. The S band beacon was still booming in but I wasn't. In retrospect I
should have tried switching uplink polarisation in these circumstances. I'm
starting to wonder if the U band uplink AGC is permanently stuck on -8dB,
whether there's a signal or not! By far the best signals I heard were
shooting >1kW EIRPc on L band. Nothing new there. There seem to be more and
more stations heading to L band....

Also I found a new (for me) propagation situation. As the satellite came
over the horizon over the Mediterranean (I had a view directly over the Med
at the shoreline), I suffered big QSB for the first five degrees or so of
elevation. My guess is that this was simply the combination of the
reflected(or refracted) and direct waves on S-band. The Period was of the
order of a minute or so. But it made it impossible to copy signals at times,
with the beacon itself showing similar S5 to S9 swings. Above 7 or 8 degrees
and there was no problem - maybe the reflected waves were no longer getting
to the feed point as they were out of the beamwidth.

Anyway enough of my chat, please QSL direct to my address on QRZ.COM.

The Casino looks on... http://www.g6lvb.com/images/aut_3608.jpg
Woaa! Too much Sun!... http://www.g6lvb.com/images/tim_3609.jpg

Again many thanks to everyone for making a great weekend for me and
apologies to those who tried but didn't make it.

73 Howard G6LVB

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