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Project: Bushfire (How it all started...) V55A

Project: Bushfire (How it all started...) V55A

Postby V51Q » Wed Jun 27, 2018 8:31 pm

Project: Bushfire (How it all started...)

Since I was a kid, I loved being a Scout. The nature, mountains, the desert... that's totally my thing. And then came that day! The Jamboree on the air event 1988. And from that day on, radio became my hobby No.1. I was hooked for live. I thought by myself, that one day, I will be that operator behind that radio, transmitting from a Scout station. Well it took a "few days" and I became a licensed Radio Amateur in 2001. Since I came back to Namibia in 2007, I did the JOTA events throughout the country. For me it is the biggest highlight in the year.

For a couple of years I was toying with the idea of building a club station for the local Radio Amateurs.
I had a Optibeam 17/4 in my garage and I wanted to share it with my fellow hams. There were a few up and downs over the years, but to make a long story short, I decided to "found/build" the Scout Club Station.

Beginning of January 2011 my colleagues from the work and I started building the 20m high radio tower. Almost every weekend and sometimes 1 or 2 hours after work a few guys would stay after work behind and help me building/welding the tower.
A few people would think, building a little Club Station is a piece of cake....!!! Yeah right!!! Getting all the stuff together like cables, earth-wire, the radio-equipment, guide wire ..... that takes quite some time. Mid of 2013 we began with the foundation. A big hole 2000 x 2000 x 1750 filled with concrete (30 bags of cement, 4m³ of gravel and 4m³ of sand). I feel very sorry for whoever wants to take this huge concrete block out of the ground somewhere in the future. The tower was put up in September 2013 with all guide wires, cables, rotator... etc. In the meantime we started to clean, paint and redo the room that soon would be our Shack (Radio room). End of December 2013 the Optibeam antenna 17/4 was assembled and in the first week of April 2014 it was mounted on the top of the 20m tower.

Then came the big moment. All the equipment was installed and connected. The moment we turned on the radio it was like my Birthday, Christmas and Easter together….!!! WOW what a difference, comparing to the little antennas we used before. On all 4 bands the SWR was just PERFECT: 1.2, 1.4, 1.2 and 1.5. Now all of a sudden we are hearing stations talking from the other side of the world with S5- signal or even stronger. Before that, we only could hear a faint whisper when we were having JOTA.
Since April 2014 the Radio Amateur Scout Station is fully operational and we can´t wait each year that Jamboree On The Air starts!

Well and for me... after 30 years my little "child dream" came finaly true and I am happy.
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V51Q
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