VK5WOW and VI5WOW, May 2017

VI5WOW

The Wireless Institute of Australia (WIA), the peak body for radio amateurs in this country, held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Convention at Hahndorf in the the Adelaide Hills over the weekend of 19th to the 21st May 2017. The theme for the weekend was Inspiring Leadership – the Future of Amateur Radio.

As part of the event two special call-signs were obtained and the two stations were operated, in the case of VK5WOW, from early April through the AGM weekend and for VI5WOW, for just two weeks over the convention weekend beginning May 14th. The suffix ‘WOW’ contains the common word used as an exclamation of surprise or wonder. This became the basis of the sub-theme (Radio is Magic) used on Saturday afternoon and on Sunday for showcasing some of the innovative developments in our hobby. VK and VI are unique Australian prefixes used in radio as is VH for aircraft (as you see every time you fly). Amateur call-signs have the prefix VK and VI is allocated for special events as in the case the AGM. The number 5 is allocated as the unique call area number for South Australia.

A special award named General Award can be achieved by obtaining five contacts with VK5WOW or VI5WOW. Within those contacts the chasing station had to work another station (either VK5WOW or VI5WOW for the Gold Award) in a National or Conservation Park or the chaser had to have at least one digital contact with either of the special stations. A digital contact could be either using a digital voice mode or a computer generated mode such as Radio Teletype (RTTY).

I enjoyed 12 contacts with both VK5WOW and VI5WOW and will apply for the special awards. Perhaps the highlight was working VI5WOW cross-band on the balloon. The up-link frequency was 145.775 FM with the CTSS frequency of 91.5 and the down-link frequency was 438.850 FM. I used my ICOM 80AD with the two frequencies programmed in adjoining channels and used the channel selector switch to move to the down-link frequency after transmitting and vice versa.

In addition I applied to use the VK5WOW call sign in the lead up to the weekend event. I also used the VI5WOW call sign briefly on the Sunday at the showcase event. I was able to make digital contacts on the 15 and 20 metre bands, including overseas contacts and a digital voice contact on the two (2) metre band as well as ssb contacts on the lower HF bands.

Here are my contacts from my home station as VK5WOW:

date 2017-05-15
JT65A
15m
0246 UA0AD -11 -18 Russia
0254 JA1KXQ -12 -21 Japan
20m
0311 VK2EBN -08 -14 NSW
0316 VA7QI -18 -14 Canada, BC
0333 VK6AS -13 -18 Western Australia
15m
0351 JH3OWW -13 -12 Japan
0405 JA8ECS -12 -11 Japan
0413 JN1VXT -12 -21 Japan
0442 BG8IXQ -13 -13 China

0453 JI1NSF -24 -20 Japan
0524 JE8VZK -11 -07 Japan
0515 HL1TKF -11 -21 Korea
20m
0543 WE5EE -14 -17 USA
40m ssb
0615 VK4AAT 59 57 Queensland
0621 VK5PAS 57 57
0624 VK5DPG 57 57
0627 VK4HNS/P 57 56
0636 VK5TW
0636 VK2GAZ 55 57
0640 VK6EA 58 58
0643 VK3OHM
0647 VK7GG Tasmania
0654 VK5KLV 58 59
0653 VK2NNN 58 57
0658 VK5ZK 57 53
80m ssb
0858 VK5FANA 57 59
0904 VK5PAS/M 57 59
0907 VK3PF
0910 VK5FMAZ/M
0912 VK7MPR
0915 VK5WAW 43 31
0915 VK2LAD
0920 VK3OHM
0930 VK2GAZ 53 32
0931 VK5NJ
0934 VK3AN 53 55
0935 VK3DN
0942 VK3VIN
0947 VK5KC
0949 VK5KBJ 57 59
0951 VK3TJS
0953 VK3ARH 54 59
0956 VK3NLK 57 59
0957 VK5BZ 57 57
2m FM
1004 VK5KBJ 59 59
1006 VK5KC 59 55
1009 VK5JDS
1028 VK5COM 52 52
1033 VK5FMWW 59 54

date 2017-05-16

YE6YE 20m JT65A 20170516 0152 -18 -20 Indonesia
YB5QZ 20m JT65A 20170516 0220 -11 -01 Indonesia
VK4SJ 20m JT65A 20170516 0220 -09 -01
ZL1BDW 20m JT65A 20170516 0230 -12 -09 New Zealand
VK2HFP 20m JT65A 20170516 0346 -09 -08
FK8CE 20m JT65A 20170516 0414 -13 -12 New Caledonia
VK2LGW 20m JT65A 20170516 0422 -16 -01
VK3OHM 20m JT65A 20170516 0434 -18 -22
VK5WU 20m JT65A 20170516 0444 -16 -16
VK4NJR 20m JT65A 20170516 0536 -09 -01
VK3OHM 40m JT65A 20170516 0558 -15 -01
VK5ZK 40m JT65A 20170516 0604 -08 -01
VK4RF 80m SSB 20170516 0926 54 55
VK4HA 80m SSB 20170516 0927 54 55
VK4RF 80m JT65A 20170516 0944 -12 -10
ZL1BV 80m JT65A 20170516 0956 -12 -21

2017-05-21 VI5WOW/P operator VK5BJE

VK3PF/5 2m DSTAR 59 59 Hahndorf

These tables have been derived from Fast Log Entry by DF3CB and my contribution to the overall score was an additional 67 qsos. I was pleased to be able to add JT65 and DSTAR to the mix of modes as well as SSB (voice).

For digital modes on HF I use an ICOM 7000 operating at 20 watts and a three-element tri-band Yagi antenna and an off-centre fed dipole on the lower bands. My HF voice and cw station is an ICOM 7600 operating at 100 watts PEP sharing the same antenna system as described above. I use a hand key for CW and my call-sign VK5PF.

As a member of the organising group my use of the special call-signs had to be squeezed in between my work for the weekend. All feedback received about the weekend has been very positive, but it was a lot of work over about 16 months to get everything ready. Was it worth it? The short answer is yes.

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