A week’s holiday on the Isle of Wight

We’re just back from a week’s holiday at Shanklin on the Isle of Wight. Very nice it was too and I think we were probably pretty lucky with the weather. There was certainly some sun and we enjoyed being out and about.

I took a variety of radio gear; FT817 and HF/VHF antennas, IC-E92ED, Wouxun 70MHz and DVAP Dongle. In the end, I really only used the IC-E92ED handheld. Our apartment was located high above Shanklin on the cliffs and I discovered that I could hear all sorts of things on VHF and UHF.

On 19th and 20th August, there was a nice temperature inversion across the English Channel. I heard and worked a number of French and Belgian repeaters across the water, just using the rubber duck antenna on the IC-E92.

Still no QSOs on the Wouxun 70MHz, but having read the review in the latest Practical Wireless, I think the helical antenna is worse than I expected. It may be time to get one of the Garex Flexwhips and see how that improves performance!

Echolink made it possible to connect to my local repeater, GB3TD, using the IC-E92 to access GB3BR in Brighton (a huge signal over a fairly long sea path) and connecting the two repeaters together. Echolink using the iPhone was less successful, owing to a slow GPRS data connection.

Enjoyable mix of radio – all very simple, but plenty of interest all the same.

Tim Kirby, G4VXE, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Oxfordshire, England. Contact him at [email protected].

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