15.05.2021 Македонски English
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We arrived to Skopje on Wednesday evening. Zoli discussed with his former colleagues if they could help him with jeep rental and USB mobile internet. Unfortunately, they didn't succeed in jeep rental and USB mobile internet. Zoli had plan "B" for mobile internet as he decoded his smart phone and bought a prepaid SIM card - using the phone as an access point for the lap top. However we didn't have solution for the jeep...
On Friday, we went to Peren to install the antennas. As realised that our Ford Fusion couldn't cope with the last 4km, we had to turn back from the hill. On the road back to Kumanovo, we made some try to rent car... and ... luckily, on the 2nd restaurant the waiter arranged us a jeep for the weekend.
Friday 14:30 (CET) - we arrived to the QTH with the first load of equipment. Laci opened the door for the site. (I left the electicity switch "on" last year [May 2012] is it was time to switch it off...)
Jeep with some scratch, and other broken parts, however was suitable for the purpose.
After half an hour (at 15:00 CET) the rain arrived. Forced us to suspend the installation. Laci/HA7PL in the car waiting the rain to stop.
We noted, that whenever we were on Peren, it rained at around 3 p.m.
Wet Zoli/HA1CA. My plan was to install 2 antenna systems: 4x6 el. fix YAGI group to 320° + rotated 12 el. LFA PLUS2.
Friday night we moved to Stip, and hoped that we can bring 4.5m mast +1.5m rotated tube from Stip radioclub. However Igor/Z32ID told us that the only key for the room where the tubes are stored is at Chris/Z35X, who left to Croatia in the morning :-(. So we had to develop a plan "B" again. Igor found a 2.5m long tube, however the diameter was below the minimum for the rotator clamp.
We assembled and tested the 4x6 el. YAGI group, and Zoli installed 1 on the side of the tower. However as we lost significant part Friday, we had to change our plan and give up the installation of the short YAGIs and concentrate on the LFA only.
Assembled 12 el. LFA PLUS 2 - Zoli didn't have time to test the antenna, so we realised on the spot that some parts were missing (1 x insulator, some screws, nuts). Managed to solve these problems. Tuning of the antenna for 144.300 was easy, however we were dissatisfied of the method of fixing the elements as they always turned aside.
We could approach the QTH was via asphalt (about 40km) and surfaced road (last 4 km). For logistic pupose I left the Ford Fusion at the end of the asphalt road and shuttled with the jeep on the last 4 km to carry the equipment. We were hoping that we can arrange camping table and chairs ... but had to look for plan "B". We used the furniture as a chair.
Contest started at 16:00 (CET)... It is 17:30 (CET) and managed to install the LFA (first try).
18:30 - finished installation of the main tent.
Arranged the shack in the rear part of the jeep. We finished the installation late night and made the first QSO at 22:16 (Local Time) - so lost the first 6 hours. Additional bad luck: the 100W driver PA was burnt down.
Sunday morning. As we had to give up installation of the fix YAGI Saturday, Zoli decided to install - at least - the antenna holders (will be used next time). We had 4 from last year, and brought additional 4. Due to the wider edge of the tower on lower level, the last year's antenna holders were suitable for higher level only. So dismantled the lowest one and installed 2 new (wider version) below existing ones. (Next time I will move the highest one to the other edge to have 4-4 on each edges).
3 holders were installed on the NW edge of the tower. Moved one holder from NE edge and installed 2 new one. Next time the 4th will be installed as well.
Sunday 12:00 (CET) - Rainfall to the south (with thunderstorm). Moved from south to west during the day - closed our main W-NW direction.
Rainfall and thunderstorm to the west as well.
Back to the first day: Alternative solution for the mast: as we gave up to install the short YAGIs, we used their booms as mast (3 of them were tied up).
However the wind freely rotated it around 30 degrees. That made it unusable for the contest.
In order to damp the free rotation, we used the 4th boom perpendicular. That solved the rotation problem. However it was already dusk, that made the installation a bit hard.
Fixed the mast with rocks.
Clear sky towards east.
Schack - FT847 + Javornik transverter (60W)
HA8UG amplifiers (GS35B). Plan was to use 100W driver PA to have 1kW output. Due to burnt down driver PA, we drove the amplifier directly by the transverter - so our power was about 550W.
Internet was provided by smart phone's access point feature. Luckily the T-Mobile offers here prepaid internet (about 1.6 EUR for 1 week with 500M internet traffic - more than sufficient for a 24 hours contest) Unfortunately T-Mobile MK has not installed here 3G or HSDPA, only EDGE was available.
Affraiding of rain, started to dismantle around 14:00 (CET). Of course, rain arrived at about 16:00 - so had to stop for a while. Finished at about 17:30 (CET)
The 5 holders (for fix antennas). Will dismantle the highest and move to the other edge next time.
19:00 (CET) We needed 2 rounds to bring the equipment to the Ford Fusion.
Did it rain at all? Clear sky at 19:00 (CET)...
Returning to Hungary on Monday. Additional adventure: I (Zoli) made a mistake and run out of diesel 4 km before the gas station in Serbia. We lost 1.5 hours by bringing diesel and than towing the car to the gas station (as motor oil went below the mimimum level and didn't allow to start the engine).


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