- Created on Tuesday, 22 March 2011 08:03
9M6XRO, John, will be QRV as V85/9M6XRO Brunei from the 23rd to 27th March 2011.
9M6DXX, Steve, will be active in the CQ-WPX contest with some activty before, QRV as 9M8Z, Sarawak, East Malaysia.
MC0SHL & MW9W
Strumble Head DX & Contest Group, will be on air from 23rd until 27th March also, and in CQ-WPX as MW9W Wales.
UK Scout Contest Team, M0XXT will be having a maintenance day at the shack but will also be active for a short while as M0XXT & M9X over the CQ-WPX weekend.
For QSL Info please follow the link as usual. NO QSL cards are required through the Bureau for the above activities.
Save Bureau costs. Request it DON'T send it!
- Created on Saturday, 19 March 2011 16:59
The QSL designs for the recent DXpeditions are coming on well. Cards will be printed very soon.
9M6XRO/8 & 9M8Z/P Pulau Satang Besar IOTA OC-165 - KH0/G3ZEM Northern Mariana Is OC-086 - T88ZM Palau OC-009 - V85/9M6XRO & V85/9M8Z Brunei Darussalam & ZL/GD3OOK Waiheke Island OC-201.
- Created on Saturday, 12 March 2011 14:00
QTH: Ostend, Waiheke Island. Loc: RF73MF
I had a delayed start due to an oversight on my part. I didn't know that ZL uses a different type mains plug from Malaysia and the U.K. so when I set up my rig I could not plug anything in! It was next day before I could find an adaptor on the island and get powered up, so I caught up on my rest the first night on OC-201. If anything, the bands in ZL are even quiter than in Borneo during daylight hours so once I had mains power I had to twiddle my thumbs waiting for the bands to open. Waiheke is a beautiful island and I thoroughly enjoyed walking and taking in the scenery when the bands were dead.
All's well that ends well they say and I ended up with 1275 Q's which I am quite happy with especially after getting back to the mainland and discovering there were solar flares and disturbances during my brief operation. I decided to go for 20m SSB the last night but a flare had taken the band out completely! Still, particularly pleasing were comments like "big signal" from the U.S. East Coast and S9+ on the DX Cluster from Europe since my antenna was a simple W3EDP 84 ft long slung over a tree in an inverted vee configuration, with a maximum height of around 35 ft, and a single 17 ft long radial. The rig was a mixture of old and new - an IC-7000 driving a 30+ year old Loudenboomer linear (using four TV sweep tubes, remember them?) to about 300 watts. The antenna was made from very thin copper wire salvaged from old TV tube focus coils, and fed through a Daiwa ATU which matched it up on all bands from 80-10m although neither 10 or 12m showed any sign of life with precious little on 15m either come to that.
I have attached a photo of the "Bach" I stayed in - quite a contrast to the accommodation recently on Pulau Satang Besar OC-165. It was luxury by comparison!
Log is now on the online log search. LoTW will be uploaded on Monday. QSL card will be designed very soon.
- Created on Sunday, 06 March 2011 20:58
A planned short operation by John 9M6XRO, as ZL/GD3OOK from Waiheke Island OC-201 New Zealand,between March 7th to 11th using a linear and wire antennas.
QSL Direct via M0URX and LoTW.
Bureau by OQRS Only!
Please do NOT send your card Via Bureau. ONLY use OQRS. Thank you.
If you do send Via Bureau it MUST have QSL Via M0URX clearly marked.
- Created on Sunday, 06 March 2011 08:10
John, 9M6XRO, and I got back home just after dark on 3 March after a nearly 3000km round-trip - Borneo is a BIG island. That's about 1km of driving for every QSO made!
Murphy was very much with us on this trip. The first casualty (not serious) was my watch, the nearly new battery of which failed between Brunei and Kuching. Then my digital camera, which had worked perfectly the day before we left, also failed. John's wife had his camera and he was relying on me to take all the photos, so that was mini disaster number 1. Fortunately we had three local hams from KK with us, and two of them had cameras. They flew to Kuching and we met up with them there and we went out to the island together. They did not want to do any operating, just came along for the experience. (Photo above: 9M8Z/P Steve & 9M6XRO/8 John, on Setang Besar Island. Photo by 9M6GY Godfrey)
We were lucky with the weather both on the trip out to the island and the way back, which was pretty calm and clear in both directions. The weather on the island was appalling, though. We had more than 24 hours of rain - not just drizzle, but a continuous tropical downpour. It was windy too, so the rain was blowing in to the shack, which had no door and mainly open windows. Add to this a couple of thunderstorms. I was amazed how cold it could be only 1 degree from the equator! All our clothes, everything, were cold and damp for pretty much the whole time we were on the island.
Hill Blocks Europe!
Conditions were poor too. One problem was that because we wanted to operate two stations we had the two antennas as far apart as possible. I had bought a 100-yard length of RG58 coax the last time I was in Singapore, and we used this for the Butternut HF6V, with a short additional length joined on so that it could be put up on the beach. However, the line loss on this length of cable was so great that our signal was well down. This coupled with a nearly 1000ft high hill immediately behind the antennas in the direction of Europe meant our signal was not as good as it should have been. The hill is in the worst possible direction for working EU. On the first day, though, I did have a good run working Europe on the long path on 20m, so we were getting out reasonably well towards the south. The VKs and ZLs were loud too, but there aren't that many of them.
Another problem was the generators. We had been told there were three 3kVA diesel generators on the island. This was my main concern before the trip but we had received messages from the island owner that the generators had been maintained and were OK. When we arrived we found there were only two working - not a problem, two 3kVA generators should be ample for what we wanted to run. Initially we tried to run both stations off one generator but this proved impossible - every time John transmitted my linear tripped out. OK: plan B was to run one station off one generator and the second station off the other generator. Neither generator was regulated so whenever a load was put on, the voltage dropped dramatically. The solution was to increase the volts to around 270V off load so that when on load the volts would be around 220V. This worked OK for a while but then my MFJ switch mode power supply blew up - too high input voltage!
One Station QRV
From this point on (the second morning) we were down to one station only, and we were careful not to put too high a voltage to that one. This meant the power output, which should have been around 500W from John's IC-2KL, was generally only around 250 or 300W at most and at times far less.
One positive effect of this, though, was that because we now only had one station, on the last day we moved the Butternut to a location much closer to the other antenna, using a much shorter length of feeder, and this definitely seemed to make a difference - signals were now better.
One other minor equipment problem was the spindle in one of the fans in John's IC-2KL had become loose, causing it to rub against the PA compartment, making a nasty grinding noise. We operated the whole time in Brunei on the return journey with it sounding like this. Fortunately the fan was still working, so there was no danger of the amp overheating as a result.
So that's it: a trip with Murphy very much in attendance. I was very disappointed by the number of QSOs made. V85 was OK, though we were only on for a few hours on each occasion. On the island I spent a lot of time calling CQ and not getting replies; a combination of poor conditions, the screening effect of the big hill and the attenuation on the long run of coax.
Thank you to 9M6DXX / 9M8Z Steve Telenius-Lowe for the above report. QSL cards will be designed soon.
- Created on Monday, 21 February 2011 16:03
IOTA Ref: OC-165 Pulau Satang Besar,
John, 9M6XRO, and Steve, 9M6DXX, will operate as 9M6XRO/8 (CW) and 9M8Z/P (SSB) respectively from Pulau Satang Besar, OC-165, from 25 February until early GMT on 28 February 2011,
Using two stations with linear amplifiers to a Hexbeam and verticals located on the ocean.QSL
Both 9M6XRO/8 and 9M8Z/P via M0URX, direct or Via the bureau, or LoTW. Alternatively, QSLs may be requested using M0URX’s OQRS
John, 9M6XRO, and Steve, 9M6DXX, will operate from Brunei, V85 (IOTA OC-088), for 2 days, on 22 February and 2 March, while travelling to and from OC-165 (see above). Callsigns are V85/9M6XRO and V85/9M8Z. QSL
Both callsigns QSL via M0URX, direct or Via the bureau, or LoTW. Alternatively, QSLs may be requested using M0URX’s OQRS
LATEST NEWS 22/02/2011 - Steve informs me that due to high S9 noise floor that there will be no 160m activity tonight from V85/9M6XRO.
LATEST NEWS 27/02/2011 - One PSU has blown. Down to one station QRV.
- Created on Thursday, 17 February 2011 17:00
VK8DX is the new call sign "On Air" from Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. Oliver Bross, MW0JRX / OM0ARX recently moved to Darwin and can be found calling CQ on HF.
QSL Via M0URX. Please be patient as we have yet to design and print the QSL card!
- Created on Sunday, 13 February 2011 10:13
10,000'th OQRS Request
I introduced the Online QSL Request System (OQRS) in September 2008 and since then 10,000 OQRS emails have been processed. Thank you for using this system which does save huge amounts of Bureau resources in both money and time. However, still far too few Radio Amateurs are bothering to check QSL information on QRZ.com, resulting in many thousands of Bureau cards being sent through the Bureau that should have used the OQRS.
The whole idea of using an OQRS is that for many DXpeditions and some DX calls, the DX operator does not need to collect the QSL cards, he is an "activator" and for these contacts a simple OQRS is all that is needed to get your Bureau QSL fast and efficiently.
Responsible Bureau Use?
We have to be more responsible against wasting money. It costs huge sums of money to ship tens of thousands of Bureau cards around the World. Many people think that the Bureau QSL is free! It is not free. In the case of QSL cards that are sent out from here, all costs are paid for by the generous donations paid by Direct QSL users that support the Bureau system for everyone to use. Also of course the time of dedicated volunteer Bureau staff around the World. Sadly I have to admit, that a lot of money here is spent retrieving Bureau QSL cards INCORRECTLY routed through the Bureau system by the sender.
RSGB Bureau puts restrictions on cards!
I am becoming increasingly frustrated with the RSGB QSL Bureau over the last few months I have been informed that the RSGB will not accept high quality QSL cards, too heavy. Will not allow contest call signs to be sent Via M0URX. These HAVE to be sent to the contest Sub manager instead. QSL Cards "Via" it has been announced are not welcome.
I will always support and honour Bureau QSL requests, but I would ask you to think BEFORE you send another shipment of QSL cards to the Bureau. If a QSL from you is required from the activators that use my system you can be sure that I will ask you to send your card too.
If you request a OQRS for Bureau, then you must update the QSL SENT field in your log with QSL Sent. This way, when you get the QSL you will understand that I do NOT need yours! "Thanks QSL" on my QSO report label should be a hint!
T88ZM & KH0/G3ZEM OQRS requests will be processed when the logs arrive from Bob Henderson.
New Topband Website
Nick UY0ZG writes in to inform us of a new website, "Ukraine Topband" dedicated to the 160m enthusiast. The site is in Russian language, Google Translate is a good way to read in your local language.
QSL Cards arrive!
A 40 kg box arrived from the printer this week with the latest batch of QSL cards. Among them was VE2CSI QSL card, for the Association de Radioamateur Sept-Iles. Direct QSL cards have been posted this week.
- Created on Wednesday, 09 February 2011 20:02
9M6DXX, 9M6XRO, M0URX, MW0JZE, VK8DX & VK8NSB will be operating from Timor-Leste (East Timor) between 16 and 26 September 2011. The location will be Atauro Island, OC-232, 30km north of the capital, Dili.
The group is working closely with the Timor-Leste licensing authority and the DXpedition callsign will be announced soon.
There will be three stations, two using full licensed power linear amplifiers, and a third running 100W. Antennas will mainly be quarter-wave verticals and vertical dipoles, all located within a few metres of the ocean. For 160m an inverted-L will be used.
Activity will be on all bands 10 - 160m using CW, SSB and RTTY.
Atauro Island was chosen in order to provide a quiet location, well away from the electrical noise of down-town Dili. The beach-front site will allows the group to put up vertical antennas right by the ocean, providing additional low-angle gain. In addition, the island counts as OC-232 and is part of a very rare IOTA group, having being confirmed by only 18% of active IOTA participants.
Accommodation on Atauro Island is very basic and the team will be in beach huts with no mains electricity or running water. All power for the DXpedition will be provided using hired generators. As such, the group will be requesting donations. A website will be available soon and further details will be published on the website.
QSL via M0URX, direct (SAE plus 1 IRC / $2), via the bureau, or LoTW. Alternatively, QSLs may be requested using M0URX’s OQRS form.
- Created on Tuesday, 08 February 2011 21:30
Following his trip to Palau, Bob 5B4AGN will be QRV as KH0/G3ZEM from the Saipan Rental Shack between February 9 - 16 2011
Again active on CW only, HF bands.
DIRECT QSL via M0URX
Bureau ONLY Via Online QSL Request System.
QSL cards will be sponsored by United Radio QSL Bureau.
Please DO NOT send cards through the Bureau for this activity. USE OQRS Thank you.
- Created on Saturday, 05 February 2011 17:33
We did have a strong Aurora last night, and I was out taking some pictures of it"
Ólavur thank you for allowing us to see these stunning images of last nights Aurora, quite breathtaking!
- Created on Tuesday, 01 February 2011 15:04
Bob, 5B4AGN is QRV in Palau, OC-009 from February 1st – 8th, 2011.
Operating from the Palau Rental Shack, he will be active on CW only with the callsign T88ZM.
DIRECT QSL via M0URX
Bureau ONLY Via Online QSL Request System.
Following his trip to Palau, Bob 5B4AGN will be QRV as KH0/G3ZEM from the Saipan Rental Shack between February 9 - 16 2011
Again active on CW only, HF bands.
QSL via M0URXQSL cards will be sponsored by United Radio QSL Bureau.
- Created on Monday, 31 January 2011 13:44
I was watching a quite heated discussion on the cluster today. Yes I know the cluster is NOT for discussion, that was not the point of my post. The content of the discussion was about the fact that many hams cannot hear VP8ORK on the South Orkeny Islands, and one ham implied that “Without money you can’t play in the premier league of DX” saying that you need money to buy big antennas and big amps. Well no I completely disagree. Anyone can play in the premier league of Big Guns even the QRP guys get the chance at some point in the game.
There is also a lot of fortune involved too. My experience this month with friends around the UK who have identical shack equipment is that if you are fortunate to live near the coast the advantage you will have with enhancement from the salt water during these low sunspot days is the difference between hearing the DX and NOT hearing the DX. Living inland in the City the problem I have had, is hearing the DX! I always work on the assumption that if you can hear it, you can work it.
So, it is not down to big money and power. Take M0TNX Kev for example. Kev has made a homebrew top band antenna and is working the DX. Kev has been out Portable near the sea and put up a simple vertical dipole. As Kev found out, the advantage that being next to the sea is probably equivalent to the guy inland with a 2 or 3 element Yagi at 40 feet.
The MUF charts show a story, and if you are in the area located where the MUF chart says “MUF 14 MHz” you are not going to work VP8ORK on 21 MHz even if you have an Optibeam 13 element. There are so many factors that are involved in being able to work the DX or not. Being Portable and adaptable to the changes in conditions, MUF, topography are all in the challenge of the DX’er.
Luckily I do have VP8ORK in the log on 20m SSB. It was the faintest of signals but just enough for me to work the guys. They are doing a terrific job down in South Orkney Island, if only the Sun would boost the Sunspot Numbers so we can all have another shot. One thing is certain, DX'ing gets very addictive when chasing an expedition such as VP8ORK.
Thank you to the team on VP8/O!
- Created on Saturday, 29 January 2011 12:14
The VE2CSI QSL card has now been designed and will arrive here in about two weeks. VE2CSI is the club call sign for Association De Radioamateurs Sept-Iles Inc, which is located in the south of CQ Zone 2.
Direct QSL cards posted out in mid February.
Bureau cards in my next Bureau shipment.
Your incoming Bureau QSL is NOT required for this QSL please ONLY use the OQRS for Bureau.
- Created on Monday, 24 January 2011 15:59
For the attention of Radio Amateurs in the United Kingdom (Only)
As I have been asked a few times in recent weeks if i can provide this service, I am now pleased to announce that I am able to offer UK Amateurs an “Outward QSL Bureau Service”, posting to World Bureaus.
This service is mainly directed to heavy users of the Bureau where the QSL manager is not permitted to send the cards through the QSL Bureau. But is also open to ANY UK Radio Amateurs that want to send QSL cards to World Bureaus
For a charge of £15 per kilogram of QSL cards, I will forward Bureau cards to all World Bureaus every two months. These will be sent by Priority Air Mail.
Bulk users (for example DX’pedition QSL Managers) should contact me by email to apply for discount.
Cheque payable to Tim Beaumont for £15 per kilo or by pre arranged amount agreed Via email.
All packing instructions are exactly the same as you would normally do when sending cards through the Bureau.
All QSL cards must be in Alpha – Numerical order and separated into Bureau piles using elastic bands.
Any cards destined for UK Radio Amateurs must be sent direct to the RSGB Bureau NOT me.
Any QSL routing “Via” MUST be correctly located in your packs!
Who can use my Bureau Forwarding Service?
Any UK Radio Amateur can use my service provided they follow my instructions above.
Where should my parcels be sent?
C/O Royal Mail
Kenilworth Delivery Office
Barrow Road, Kenilworth
Warwickshire, CV8 1AA
If any UK hams want to discuss using my service for outward QSL Bureaus you can phone me on 07976 292980.
For a guide to correctly bundling your Bureau cards you can view a list of IARU World Bureaus and prefixes here
- Created on Sunday, 23 January 2011 18:50
Stuie VK8NSB, from Darwin, the Capital of the Northern Territory in Australia, has introduced "Live Web Stream" to his shack.
You are welcome to view when Stuie is QRV. You can find the live stream at: VK8NSB
- Created on Saturday, 22 January 2011 18:48
It is always nice to read positive comments about my work, today I was really surprised to read the Blog of ON7RU Frank.
"At the hamfest in Friedrichshafen in a lecture sponsored by CQ-DL/DARC, the best QSL'er of the past year is chosen. The last few years Nigel, G3TXF took the golden medal to the UK.
Since a year, a new QSL star is born. The new star lives, just as Nigel in the UK and his callsign is M0URX. The owner of the callsign, Tim Beaumont built up a good reputation in a very short time. His unique OQRS (Online QSL request system) works very well, and he offers a fast turnaround time and premium quality QSL cards.
On his website/blog you can track updates of new DXpeditions, arrival of printed QSL cards, ....
Tim, you’re a 5-star ham, keep up the good work and hope to meet you some day.
Thanks for your comments Frank, I have to say it is a team effort, ON5UR Max who is as patient as a saint with my continual QSL design requests. MW0JRX Oliver with his help and advice on IT, and of course the team of DX’ers that I am QSL manager for, they do a lot of work in all aspects of DX’peditioning, it is their excellent communication that enables me to do my job in getting the QSL cards sent to their destination without any dramas. I certainly will be keeping up the work, we have so much coming up this year, I am very much looking forward to keeping the United Radio QSL Bureau working for you. I do hope we can catch up for some beers sometime Frank.
- Created on Sunday, 02 January 2011 17:47
I would like to welcome members of the “Association de Radio Amateur Sept-Iles Inc” to the United Radio QSL Bureau. QRV under the call of VE2CSI the members will be active from the club station which is located in the south of CQ Zone 2 in Quebec Canada.
QSL cards will be designed soon and will be QSL Direct Via M0URX, or if you require a card through the Bureau please ONLY use my Online QSL Request Service.
As QSL requests are coming in already can i make it clear that i will reply to ALL QSL requests when the cards are printed. Please be patient, thanks.
- Created on Saturday, 01 January 2011 08:51
Happy New Year & Best Wishes for 2011 to all my readers.
Looking back through my log for 2010 I can see quite clearly that the Solar Cycle 24 started to show signs of life, despite some very poor conditions at times during the year. Some new DXCC's worked during the year include Kermadec Islands, Norfolk Island, the four new PJ's of course, Marion Island, Wallis & Futuna Island, St Vincent, & Eastern Kiribati.
Statistics for M0URX DXCC Band Slot SSB activity during 2010
Above table from Club Log SSB League Table.
While the table below shows the total figure for the 2009 SSB League at 31/12/2009
I have submitted my entry to the 2010 CQ DX Marathon. 246 DXCC + 40 Zones = 286 points.
- Created on Wednesday, 22 December 2010 14:41
2,800 QSL cards Via M0URX. Completed.
4,400 QSL cards posted 07/01/2011.
QSL cards ready to send Via Bureau
2E0COV 3 9M8Z 135 M0XXT 60 ZC4VJ 336
3DA0OK 55 A25OOK 22 MC0SHL 160 ZK1SDE 3
5B/G4MKP 10 C91XO 41 MS0INT 160 ZS6/GM3OOK 10
7P8OK 100 CY2ZT/2 56 OY1OF 57
9M4SEB 6 G4MKP 14 OY4TN 40
9M6DXX & /P 113 HB0/OU4U 18 V8FRO 41
9M6/G3OOK 9 HH2/VE2TKH 8 XU7DXX 9
9M6XRO & /P 368 M0URX 106 XU7XRO 179
Out of 2,800 QSL cards received 650 should NOT have been sent to me. Here is a guidline to help you in your QSL'ing.
Some things to remember when sending QSL cards.
1) It is very important to mark your log in the QSL SENT field. Mark your log B = Bureau or D = Direct.
2) If you send your QSL DIRECT. Never send the same QSL Via Bureau.
3) If requesting a QSL on a Online QSL Request Service, mark your log QSL Sent. Never send your QSL Via Bureau from an OQRS unless you are asked to.
4) NEVER send more than ONE QSL for the same QSO. If one is damaged or lost email the QSL Manager for another.
5) If my QSL says "THANKS QSL" That means I already have yours. DO NOT send me any more for that QSO!
6) Write ALL QSO's on the ONE QSL card if you can. Do not send 10 QSL cards for 10 QSO's.
7) All QSL cards Via M0URX. MUST be clearly written "QSL Via M0URX" Do not expect the Bureau to do it!
The above may sound like common sense but many of you are sending me up to 6 QSL cards for the same QSO by all routes. This wastes my time and wastes huge amounts of money for world Bureaus.
- Created on Tuesday, 14 December 2010 09:31
2010 has been a very busy year for the United Radio QSL Bureau, as the year draws to a close may I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for a Prosperous 2011.
A thank you for all your emails and letters over the past year.
It has been a real pleasure to work with the Radio Amateurs that I am QSL manager for. United Radio is a real team effort, from the guys that are operating from around the World, from Malaysia 9M6DXX Steve & 9M6XRO John, VK8NSB Stuie in Darwin, ZC4VJ Andy who closed his log this year with 66,000 Qs in the log. OY1OF Olavur & OY4TN Trygvi, from the Faroe Islands, P29CS Andy in Papua New Guinea and the many other operators too.
My stationary supplier Mike Pugh, thanks for the great support you gave to me again this year. I get through huge amounts of inkjet labels every year. Also thank you to ON5UR Max who has worked hard for me this year designing, printing and shipping the QSL cards to me.
I must also say farewell and good luck for your new life in Australia to a dear friend Oliver Bross MW0JRX. Oliver has been a massive help to me being the IT manager of my website, without you Oliver, this venture would not have been a success. Good luck dear friend for your future career and life in VK.