All posts by John Gumb

Folks,

Thanks to Michael M0MPM, we have a talk entitled “An Introduction to 3D Printing for the Radio Amateur” by James Patterson, M1DST.

Date: Thursday 27th September
Venue: Woodford Park Leisure Centre, Haddon Dr, Woodley, RG5 4LY
Time 8pm.

From James:

“We will introduce you to the fascinating world of 3D printing where we will learn about the different 3D printing methods with a focus on
inexpensive FDM machines. You will leave with an understanding of how the machine works and how 3D printing can be used as a tool to improve your Amateur Radio life. We will discuss the tools used to take an idea from your head to become a finished item.”

Refreshments available as usual.

Looking forward to seeing you there.

73

John
G4RDC

meeting 13th September “The Speed of Light” by Prof. Bob Lambourne

Next meeting Thursday 13th September, Woodford Park Leisure Centre, Haddon Dr, Woodley, RG5 4LY.

In the words of the great NGX, Eyes down 8pm.

With a huge thankyou to Ian 2E0DII, to kick off the Autumn season we welcome Prof. Bob Lambourne with a talk entitled “The Speed of Light”.

Bob says: “As a title I should like to speak about ‘The speed of light’. This will enable me to combine a number of topics that might be of interest to Radio Club members, including some historical info about James Clerk Maxwell and Oliver Heaviside. Since 1983 the speed of light (and of radio waves!) in a vacuum has been defined to be exactly 299 792 458 m/s.

This talk will examine the story of how the speed of light made the transition from a measurable speed, with a value that could be determined experimentally, to a quantity of such fundamental and practical importance that the decision was made to assign it an explicit and exact value that would put it beyond future measurement.  Along the way there will be a discussion of why the speed of light represents a local speed limit in Einstein’s special theory of relativity, even though many faster than light phenomena are easily demonstrated. According to currently favoured theories, all sufficiently distant galaxies are moving away from us at more that 1 light year per annum; consequently, after less than 14 billion years of cosmic expansion, the edge of the observable universe (the cosmic horizon) is at a distance of about 46 billion light years – a neat trick in a universe limited by light speed travel! ”

James Clerk Maxwell, for me, is the patron saint of radio. A truly beautiful mind. He mathematically worked out how electricity and magnetism work together to produce our beloved electromagnetic waves.

Bob Lanbourne is Professor of Educational Physics art the Open University and Director of Studies in Physical Sciences at the Oxford University Department for Continuing Education. He was born and brought up in Reading but attended university in London, where he took a BSc in physics and a PhD in theoretical particle physics. His first university teaching post was in Durham where he taught the Maths Honours module in general relativity and cosmology. He has worked at the Milton Keynes campus of the Open University for over 40 years, where his roles have included three years as Head of the Department of Physics and Astronomy, and five years as National Director of the Physics Innovation Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (piCETL). His work outside the OU has included periods as Senior Vice-President of the Institute of Physics, Chair the the Physics Education Division of the European Physical Society, and Chair of the International Commission on Physics Education, one of the Commissions of The International Union of Pure and Applied Physics.

“Night on the Air Take Two”

Next meeting Thursday 23rd August at Reading Rugby Football Club, Holme Park/Sonning Lane, Sonning, Reading RG4 6ST. Historically this is a “Drinks Evening”/relaxed social evening but I think we can squeeze some radio in too.

The new club rig will be brought out to play and weather permitting we’ll put on an HF station and/or possibly 6m/4m.

Feel free to bring along any items that may be of interest – possibly
acquisitions from recent rallies?

The bar will be open. Informally we’ll start at 7pm to make use
of the daylight (and the bar).

If you have any bright torches/lamps might be worth bringing one along to help us clear up as the nights are drawing in even more 🙂

Kevin G0PEK and Lauren 2E0HLR on the Thames!

Folks,

Kevin G0PEK and Lauren 2E0HLR will be passing through our neck of the woods active on at least 2 metres.  I understand they will be on a boat on the Thames, possibly canoeing and operating radio. Possibly all at the same time. They will be at Wallingford on Friday.

Lauren is only 12 and has climbed all 214 ‘Wainwrights’ and is a great advocate for amateur radio.

Be sure to give them a shout and a great Thames Valley welcome.

Lauren, M6HLR – Wainwrights success

Thanks to Dave G0TKV for spotting this.

73

John

G4RDC

McMichael Rally 2018 – 22nd July 2018 – Call for Helpers!

Folks,

“Our”rally is coming up soon. We need all the help we can get with prep on the Saturday and running the show on the day.

It is a significant South of England rally thus important to the amateur community as a whole. Newbury, Luton, Wildhern et al. put on a great show this year – let’s do the same for our guests!

The McMichael Rally Committee have put in a lot of hard work in getting to this point. They deserve our support now.

Please contact Denis G4KWT if you are able to help. As he says,

“*** YOUR RALLY NEEDS YOU ***”

Thankyou,

John
G4RDC

Satellites, Sporadic E and Social

Folks,

Next meeting Thursday 28th June, RRFC.

Venue: Reading Rugby Football Club, Holme Park/Sonning La, Sonning, Reading RG4 6ST 8pm til late. (get there earlier if you wish – the bar will be open)

If you have anything to work satellites we’ll try that this time so
bring along your VHF/UHF gear and prediction gizmos.

Also last time I didn’t get round to evaluating the site RF wise so if
anyone has a wideband SDR, would be interesting to see how RF
noisy/quiet RRFC is.

As ever at this time of year, 21/28/50/70MHz – or even 144MHz Sporadic ‘E’ is likely to be happening so if you have any portable gear covering those bands I’m sure others would be interested. Also it might be a good evening for NLC or “Noctilucent cloud” spotting which I think is a similar phenomenon.

We do have the room upstairs if we want it, but Wx this time looks good so enjoy the sunshine and a beer!

73

John
G4RDC

Antennas evening 14th June, 50MHz UKAC

Folks,

We meet again this Thursday 14th June.

Venue: Reading Rugby Football Club, Holme Park/Sonning La, Sonning, Reading RG4 6ST 7pm til late.

This time we’ll have a go at the 50 MHz UK Activity contest. Aim will be to introduce people to contesting. It runs from 8pm to 10:30pm BST. There’s also a 50 MHz FM contest from 7pm to 8pm before that for the really keen. I for one would be at least interested in giving some points away in that.

We will also try and do a bit of an RF site survey at RRFC just to get
an idea of how noisy/quiet it is. So I’ll bring up some SDR kit
(software defined radio) of some sort – probably an airspy and SDR
Sharp.

We will have some sort of HF station also. I think Wally wants to
experiment with a 20m/40m cross dipole. Not sure what he did to upset it.

I’ve not run this by the committee yet but we might have a look into why the cheapie icom club rig we have is deaf as we established last time. It’s not much use as a rig at the moment so we might as well learn something from it. I’m thinking for those who wonder “what’s in the box” it might prove of passing interest.

As ever feel free to bring along anything you feel may be of interest.

Looking forward to seeing you there.

We will adapt activities (QSY the bar most likely) if the weather is not clement.

Refreshments provided by the bar!

73

John
G4RDC

Meeting Thursday 24th May Reading Rugby Football Club – informal evening

Next meeting is 24th May at Reading Rugby Football Club, Sonning Lane, RG4 6ST. Plan is to enjoy a beer/beverage, some sunshine, a bit of radio and have a natter. Hopefully the weather will be kind, Though the forecast could be better…

We’ll try to put on a simple HF station and maybe some 6m/4m/2m VHF. Should be a good opportunity newcomers to experience setting up a station.

Would be interesting if we can start to judge what the site is like RF
wise. At VHF it should be quite good as it’s not too far from where the old BK repeater used to be at Shepherd’s Hill.

By all means bring along any kit you’d like to play with. Just remember to keep an eye on it as it is a public space, try not to irradiate passers by etc.

Also be aware of high field strengths near antennas damaging kit – very unlikely anything would get damaged but something to keep in mind.