This weekend was the first of the two annual visits we make to Aylmers farm. Generally we erect some tents and play radio all weekend trying out different radios and antennas and just socialise. Unfortunately this weekend was a little under subscribed, which was no fault of the organisers, it was just one of those things. I wasn’t going to go this year due to prior arrangements, but after hearing about the expected poor turn out I re-arranged things in order to attend. By the time I got to Aylmers the tents and masts were already put up, so there wasn’t much for me to do. I took Alfie with me to let him have a run around in the field, which he did.
My radio of choice this visit was my FT-897 and pro whip antenna, I had intended building a multi-band dipole but ran out of time. So the pro whip it was to be. After a teething problem with the feeder I called CQ on 30 metres and a Czech Republic station came straight back to me, followed swiftly by a German station, after a couple more stations I worked W1MK in Massachusetts and got a 599 report straight back.
In the morning I got back on the key and worked a few more stations. I am very pleased with the 897’s performance and am getting used to it now, I am glad I chose to add this radio to my collection, this is my 5th Yaesu radio in my collection.
In other news, Martha II finally passed her Boat Safety Certificate, I went up on last Wednesday and met the Inspector at Sutton Staithe, he was a very nice man, and I’d say this even if he failed us, and set to work, I removed panels and gave him access to the relevant areas and after an inspection lasting the best part of 2 hours Martha II was given her Boat Safety Certificate. I cant wait for me and Lesley to get back out on the river again.