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2009 Magazines

Other years

Amateur Radio December 2009

Delivery expected from December 1


Another year (almost) gone

December is here again – is it just me or does everything seem to be more hectic?

Time to start thinking about reviewing the “to do” list and prioritise the tasks. High on my list must be to build a Yagi antenna for the six metre band. The current vertical just does not cut the mustard! There are plenty of other amateur radio tasks as well – I seem to have gone backwards this year.

And of course we have a big year ahead, with the celebrations of the centenary of organised amateur radio in Australia.

Please do remember to write up the events in which you are involved, and take lots of photographs at as high a resolution as you can manage. Then send in the material to both this magazine and to the Centenary Committee – we will publish the best material in the magazine and you can add to the future history of the WIA.

Some brief words about Photographs

Over the coming weeks, I intend to update the Guide to Authors material that is available for download on the magazine section of the WIA website.

For now, let me simply make a plea to anyone taking digital photographs that might end up being submitted for publication:

Please set your camera to take and store photos at the highest possible resolution! We often receive images that are very small – any file (even a jpg format image) that is less than about 100 kB in size is unlikely to be usable for the magazine. We would much prefer to have photos that are at least 500 kB in size, and bigger if you think that it might be worthy of consideration for the cover or inside cover pages.

You may need to download the images more often from the camera to the PC, and to also save the files (with modified names) to smaller versions to share with friends and family via email, but for reproduction in the magazine, we really do prefer the images as big as we can get! If need be, send us a smaller version of the file initially, but please tell us that a higher resolution version is available.

I can then contact you for the higher resolution file if needed. For most articles, we can wait for a CD to arrive via mail. If we need something urgently, there are other mechanisms available to transfer the file/s.

Please do think about the composition of the photograph before you hit the shutter button. Also think about the lighting. If the subject’s face is in shadow because of a strong light source coming from behind, activate your flash to in-fill the face. A better image should result.


Please continue to put fingers to keyboard (or pen to paper) and write articles for Amateur Radio. We currently have a reasonable stock of technical articles varying from simple to complex projects. We thank all who have contributed over the past year. Keep up the good work everyone.

We currently have few general articles ready for publication – I am sure that can change if you think about reporting on events locally. Some brief material may end up placed in the “News From” section of the magazine, but others may make it as feature articles.

Club advertising

One item that requires updating are the provisions regarding the placement of Club advertising in Amateur Radio. We are attempting to rationalise our processes, thereby ensuring that it is harder for us to miss a Club advertisement.

Part of this process will be the establishment of a single registration point for advertising books and content. We can then be sure that we have all the required details; including billing details if the advertising needs us to charge the Club.

Club Secretaries can expect to receive advice of the changes once they have been confirmed. Once finalised, the policy document will also be placed on the Amateur Radio section of the WIA web site.

Season’s Greetings

I trust that all readers have a safe and enjoyable festive season. Enjoy the celebrations (in moderation of course) and make some time to be on air. It looks like we are finally seeing some new cycle sunspots, so hopefully ionospheric propagation will be picking up!

As is our usual pattern, the next issue will be out in late January – a combined January/February issue.

Cheers, Peter VK3PF

Cover photo

So simple it’s a world beater. Our Foundation Corner contributor Ross Pittard outlines some simple test equipment. Shown is the VK5JST Antenna Analyser, hundreds of which are sold in kit form around the world by SCARC.

Table Of Contents


Election of Directors, call for nominations
Gridsquare Standings at 16 October 2009: Guy Fletcher VK2KU
Horkheimer Prize 2010
The VK9NI Norfolk Island DXpedition 2009: Allan Mason VK2GR and Tommy Horozakis VK2IR
Amateur radio gives you two million friends: Al Shawsmith ex VK4SS
WIA Centenary Committee Call for articles
The 2009 Remembrance Day Contest results: Peter Harding
Ross Hull Memorial VHF-UHF Contest 2010 rules: John Martin VK3KM
Summer VHF-UHF Field Day 2010 rules: John Martin VK3KM


Twin channel remote control relays with PIN protection: Horrie Davis VK2LY
Paddy-board construction – SMT style: Peter Whellum VK5ZPG
Taming the SMPS beast: Ian Cowan VK1BG
A complete 8 MHz IF system for USB, LSB and CW for a HF transceiver: Peter Wathen VK3EPW
A 30 watt linear amplifier for two metres: Dale Hughes VK1DSH
T-boom Yagis: Barry Miller VK3BJM
Tools and Test Equipment (Foundation Corner Four): Ross Pittard VK3CE

The VK9NI Norfolk Island DXpedition 2009

Allan Mason VK2GR and Tommy Horozakis VK2IR

The authors, two of the team that activated VK9NI earlier in the year, tell of the planning, preparation, and ultimate operation of the DXpedition, some of the successes achieved and some challenges identified, that will necessitate planning and operational changes that will be required to maximise the enjoyment and success of any future DXing activation.

For those among the readership who are DXers it is an interesting article generating, as it often does, something of a ‘I wish it had been me’ feeling.

Contests! RD 2009 Results and Rules for the Summer VHF/UHF events

Peter Harding VK4OD and John Martin VK3KM

This month we present the summary results of the 2009 Remembrance Day Contest, with complete results available from the WIA website at the RD Contest page

John Martin VK3KM presents the rules for the annual Ross Hull and Summer VHF/UHF Field Day contests.
Read the rules and make some contacts - you never know what can happen: perhaps a participation certificate or your name added to the list of past winners!

Tools and Test Equipment (Foundation Corner Four)

Ross Pittard VK3CE

This article is number four in a series designed principally for our Foundation licensees, but which will also find some resonance with all amateurs.

It recommends a number of tools, and pieces of equipment, that the Foundation level amateur ought aim at acquiring for his shack, if not immediately then eventually, and discusses briefly some of the benefits and applications, of each.

T-boom Yagis

Barry Miller VK3BJM

This article provides very detailed, indeed quite specific, instructions on how to fabricate a multi element VHF or UHF Yagi, in this instance for 1296 MHz. While being quite specific in measurement detail and construction techniques for the frequency chosen, the methodology could be applied to a very wide range of amateur (and non-amateur) antennas.

As antenna design and construction is one of the last widely utilised areas of building for a great many amateurs, it provides a solid plan, and common sense principles, to complete a ‘first-class’ product.

A very interesting antenna construction article.

Advertisers Index

 60 Av-com
 Fly Bookshop
 38 Centre Victoria Radiofest
 22 Com-an-tena
 60 Cookson (Jackson Bros)
 60 Hamak Electrical Industries
 OBC Icom
 60 Little Devil Antennas
 60 Ludatronics
 60 RF Tools
 41 TET-Emtron
 29, 60 TTS
 60 VKHam
 28 WIA Merchandise


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