Estancia Valley Radio Amateur Association



Field Days

Select Year

In June, 2005,In June, 2005, we attempted to have our Field Day at the EOC.  Considering there were few members, and that we tried it only on Saturday afternoon and briefly on Sunday morning, we did OK.  But we also ran into serious problems. 

Using the 718 on HF, we learned we could not hear much at all.  The HF antenna was functioning, an all band folded dipole on the roof of the courthouse, but the electrical noise is the building was at least an S9 on all bands.  Only very strong signals could be heard.

We decided to try again in 2006 on Field Day, with the same results.  Some of us went on the roof of the courthouse and tried finding where all the noise was coming from, but it was coming from every electrical gadget in the building, including the giant rooftop air conditioner. 

I spent time with the building maintenance guy, shutting off various things, but we could never get the noise out of the radio.  The only solution would be to move the antenna far away from the building, perhaps in some trees, but that would put it near very heavy duty power lines.  It was, we decided, a lost cause.

Later that year, we set up for Public Awareness Day, in Crosley Park, in Moriarty, NM.  We ran generator power, supplied by then-K5GMT, Chuck.  We had fun, made only a few contacts, and our only public attention was from a wedding party, when a lady from the party brought us over some wedding cake. 

In 2007 we tried Field Day in City Park in Moriarty.  This allowed us commercial power, and pre-installed shelter.  That brought virtually no public attention either.  We operated only for perhaps four hours on Saturday afternoon.

In 2008,In 2008, for Field Day, we set up at a member's home, Daniel, KD7UFS.  We had fun, no public awareness, ate lots of food, drank lots of Coke and Pepsi, and made a few contacts.  Again, we operated only on Saturday afternoon.

Field Day, 2009 we did it again!  We set up at the home of Daniel, KD7UFS.  And we had fun.  But this time we had something new to play with!  Daniel had acquired an old TV remote van, with a telescoping 40 foot mast on it,(orginally holding a dish for their TV remote pickup) and had installed an HF radio, and a triband beam with rotator on the mast. 

Mostly we operated from his patio, which is partially enclosed, and the burgers, cooked by Joel, were a delight.  Yeah, we had plenty of food!  And lots of Cokes, too. 

A new member of the club, Dave, WB2KRS, brought his Icom 706, some solar cells, and some deep cycle batteries.  He wanted to run solar low power.  We ran into difficulties immediately, as the solar charger quit.  I had an AC power supply I had brought, so we powered his radio from that. 

Daniel had built a "teepee" antenna, for 10 and 6 meters, complete with a balun, and Paul, Dave and some others put up about a 30 foot mast and that antenna on top.  It was basically a fan dipole, fed with coax, but with the six and ten meter antennas 90 degrees from each other.

Dave tried six meters and was very surprised and pleased to contact a station immediately in Minnesota.  That was, though, the only contact made on six. 

Most of our operating, when we operated instead of chatting with each other, was on 20 meters, though we did have some 15 meter activity.

All in all, it accomplished what we wanted, testing our equipment learning we could make a few contacts, and finding out what could and would go wrong.  And testing the hamburgers and hot dogs.

We packed it in around 4 pm, earlier than we had intended, but we had done what we set out to do.

Comments in the club indicate that we should go for the full 24 hours next year, and do some more solar operation.  We are not yet sure of a location, but will be planning over the next several months.

Ed Brooks

President (Now -Silent Key), EVARA

Trustee, NM5EV