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AO-51 DX-by-mail

This is an idea that I floated a while back, and which generated no
interest. I still think it has merits, so I'm going to try again:

So-called 'Easysat' operation would be even more fun if there were more DX
to work. Who hasn't watched the footprint of AO-51 glance across, say, West
Africa, called 'CQ' and hoped against hope? I expect the ops in the S. USA
have the same experience with parts of South America, and I know that N.
Russia always tantalizes me. What we need is someone to work in these
areas. I suspect that, in some cases, these areas would very much like the
use of equipment to work us in turn.

I therefore propose an AMSAT DX-by-mail program, whereby an Arrow antenna
and handheld are mailed to a worthy and interested operator in a desirable
location. This would constitute a three month loan, during which time the
operator agrees to be on the air with some regularity, and after which time
the equipment is returned for use by another recipient.

The benefits would be as follows:

1. More DX to work!

2. Exposing a worthy and interested operator to this aspect of our hobby

3. Exposure for AMSAT-NA, showing just how enjoyable and portable easysat
operations are

Chosing an appropriate recipient would be the difficult part, I suppose. I
would prefer to help out someone who couldn't easily buy the necessary
equipment himself or herself, especially an interested youth. It would be
fun to put the word out via email and the internet and see who applies.

I'm aware that there's a real danger of the equipment not coming back, but
there are worse things in life :-) 

Since I now have rotating antennas on a mast and it's starting to get very
cold out, I'd be willing to lend my Arrow Antenna for a few months if we
could somehow scrounge up a suitable radio. A loaner would be the easy way,
or if 40 of us chipped in $10, we could get a new one for the job. Then
there's postage, etc, but none of it seems insurmountable to me.

So, friends, what is your favorite silent spot on the map? Where should the
DX-by-mail fairy first visit? Surinam? Western Sahara?

73, Bruce 

Sent via amsat-bb@amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
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