VA3SIE/PM webcam calling W0RW/PM webcam!

By , December 21, 2009 7:16 pm

This morning I checked the QRP-L list and I saw an announcement from Paul W0RW that he was planning to operate pedestrian mobile within view of the web cam at the Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument in Colorado.

Great idea Paul to operate from within view of a web cam!

I glanced at my watch and realized that if I left the house in the next few minutes I would have enough time to get to a local web cam and make contact with Paul webcam-to-webcam!

Here’s a video of the web cams which I captured while I was out…

Before leaving the house, I set my PC to monitor both Pauls webcam and my webcam and take snapshots once per minute.

So I dashed downstairs, grabbed (almost) all the stuff I needed, fired up my APRS radio and walked to the park.  Hmm, now that I’m home I see that my APRS packets were not making it to APRS-IS, will need to look into this – maybe my radio was off frequency.  Anyhoo, I got to the park around 1715Z and set up the pedestrian mobile antenna on a park bench, and I was on the air on 20m around 1750Z – 10 minutes before Paul was due to QSY to 14342.5kHz USB.

I realise that I had forgotten my pencil so I had to copy morse in my head – a skill which could use some improvement.

Unfortunately I could not hear Paul on 14061kHz :cry: …  I did throw my callsign in there a couple of times just in case but no joy I think the band was too long.  Just before 1800Z I heard a station calling me, it was Michael VE3WMB he was watching me walking around the park on the web cam!  Cool – thanks for the call Michael.

It was interesting to hear the emissions from OC Transpo buses on 20m.  Everytime a bus would stop at a nearby bus stop I would hear a very interesting (and pretty loud) pulsing noise.

Right after Michael, Budd W3FF called me.  His signal report was 529 and when I thought about it I realized why…  I had placed my batteries inside my fleece to keep them warm but I had forgotten to connect them to the radio so I was on the internal (almost completely depleted) batteries and must have been putting out around 0.5W of power.  I connected the batteries and Michael mentioned I jumped up to around an S7 at his station.

Click for full size

Click for full size

I QSY‘ed to 14342.6kHz at 1800Z and walked around for another hour hoping the propagation would change and Paul would pop out of the noise.  A couple of times I did hear him but in each case I got only 10 to 15 seconds of speech and nothing more.  I also popped my callsign out (in CW) a few times.  After an hour I had not managed to contact Paul  :cry:   Oh well maybe next time, propagation was not with us today.

I QSY‘ed back to 14061kHz once or twice and called CQ once or twice.  One of the times I did that I got a call from NG7N (?) Paul.  Well I think I copied Paul’s callsign down wrong because QRZ.com says NG7N is Craig.  Oops.  That’s the problem with not having a pencil along.

Here’s some videos I shot:


72 / 73 de Dittie Bear.

7 Responses to “VA3SIE/PM webcam calling W0RW/PM webcam!”

  1. VE3WMB says:

    I just happened to see your Facebook message pop-up (I use Tweetdeck to keep track of all my social networking stuff) so I pulled up the webcams and then thought that I would try calling you on 14.061 just in case you were monitoring.

    After .. I checked aprs.fi for VA3SIE-7 expecting to see you wandering the park but the last beacon was a number of hours before your /PM outing so something was amiss. I was going to send you a quick APRS message from my iPod touch using iBCNU.

    Great to work you and fun to be able to watch you on the webcam.

    Michael VE3WMB

  2. Bill k6acj says:

    Nice videos, what fun …… poor propagation to Southern California but I’ll keep trying, maybe beacon CW CQ on 18157.5 …..

    I also run APRS text messaging, a TinyTrak4 with self contained display and keyboard so it will be used more and more often from the field to see who is on. It would be a good idea of all /P or /PM used a SSID like -15, I’m not sure how high the number could be but anyway look for k6acj-8 or k6acj-7 on the weekends.

    Bill k6acj

  3. va3sie says:

    Michael, yes the lack of IGATE’ed APRS packets is a mystery. The radio was on and the APRS was enabled, the freq. was set correctly, I have no idea why the packets did not make it into aprs.fi. My battery did die but not until 1815Z or thereabouts. I also use tweetdeck for the same reasons, it’s a great application!

    73 and thanks for the call – made my day!

  4. va3sie says:

    Hi, Bill.

    Interesting comments on the SSID.

    I think -15 is already allocated to ‘HF’.

    -7 is defined as -7 ANY HT or man-portable system so that’s the one we have to use I think.

    Pity APRS won’t accept a /PM in my call sign :-)

    73
    Martin.

  5. Stuart says:

    Hi Martin,
    You probably worked Paul, NG7Z. Stay warm and GUD DX.
    Stu KI6J

  6. [...] I spent another hour in the park mostly just listening around on the KX1.  At one point, I heard Paul W0RW/PM on 20m 14.059MHz but despite returning to Pauls CQ about 15 times in 10 minutes he could not hear [...]

  7. [...] I spent another hour in the park mostly just listening around on the KX1.  At one point, I heard Paul W0RW/PM on 20m 14.059MHz but despite returning to Pauls CQ about 15 times in 10 minutes he could not hear [...]

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