L-R:  Brian GM8BJF, Brian GM4DIJ, Danny GM6CMQ, Andy MM0FMF, Colin GM4HWO, Norrie GM1CNH,  Terry GM3WUX, Mike GM4IGS, Peter GM4DTH, Robin GM4YPL, Pete GM4BYF (with halo), Alan GM3PSP.

VHF NFD 2017 at Gatehouse of Fleet was another success for the LRS with good wx most of the time (apart from thick cloud on the Saturday afternoon!) and good scores on 50MHz, 70MHz, 144MHz and 1296MHz in the Restricted section. We were joined by Mike GM4IGS from Troon and Terry GM3WUX from Glasgow as operators on 6m & 4m. On the Friday after setting up our tents we spent the evening in the Masonic Arms in Gatehouse, then retiring to the events tent for the traditional whisky tasting. On Saturday Colin GM4HWO provided his usual bacon rolls breakfast and an outstanding barbecue in the evening. Band scores, checked and submitted:

                                              Band       QSOs      Points       Best-DX     Loc          km

6m             95        33451       CT1BOH    IM58js   1834

4m             72        26404       SP9HWY   JO90nh  1642

2m           159        53796       F6KCP/P   JN18ou     839

   23cm         22          7598        G5LK/P    IO01qd     556   

Photos by Alan GM3PSP & Peter GM4DTH. Peter was also shooting video including some using his UAV (drone). Several still clips (aerial shots) from the video are included here.


Terry GM3WUX pitching his 1-man tent.


Merry group in the Masonic Arms, Gatehouse of Fleet.

L-R: Brian GM4DIJ, Mike GM4IGS, Alan GM3PSP, Colin GM4HWO, Terry GM3WUX, Pete GM4BYF, Brian GM8BJF. 


 L-R: Mike GM4IGS, Norrie GM1CNH, Danny GM6CMQ, Peter GM4DTH.


Brian GM8BJF


 Back at the events tent, the whisky-tasting started.

Danny GM6CMQ. Brian GM8BJF, Colin GM4HWO.


Danny GM6CMQ looks a little worried ...


... things have gone a bit blurred!


'The following morning' ... Colin GM4HWO provided the usual excellent bacon rolls.


Then time to put up the antennas. The 9-element yagi for 50MHz was the biggest, requiring multiple support cords.



 It took four guys to pull it up using the gin-pole (sp?!)


Robin GM4YPL admiring Andy MM0FMF's portable yagi for 2m made from metal measuring tapes.

This was used for SOTA operation from a nearby hilltop during the day. 


Peter GM4DTH was shooting video of the antenna erections using his UAV - Unmanned Aerial Vehicle ('drone'). 


Peter was really enjoying using his new toy, which can fly for up to 20 minutes on one battery-charge.


Big brother is watching you!


 Aerial shot (!) of the 6m yagi ready for erection.


The 6m (Saturday) and 4m (Sunday) station.

Equipment: 6m: FT847 barefoot 100W to 9 element long yagi, 12.5dBd gain at 10m agl.

Eqpt. 4m: FT847 + TE Systems 40W amplifier + Rx preamp to 11 element long yagi, 13.7dBd gain at 10m agl.

The sloping ground to the south provided significant low-elevation angle ground gain on both bands.


Brian GM3DIJ and Terry GM3WUX on the 6m station.



Map of all 6m QSOs


Map of all 4m QSOs.


2m beam being erected with gin-pol.


2m beam up and guys being tightened.


Army tent housing the 2m station.


 The 2m station equipment: FT736 + solid state linear amp (100W) and masthead Rx preamp.

Antenna - 67 element yagi at 9m agl.


 Danny GM6CMQ and Norrie GM1CNH operating the 2m station


Alan GM3PSP, Danny GM6CMQ & Norrie GM1CNH


23cm station and events tent.  


 The scout tent housing the 23cm station.


Brian GM8BJF and Pete GM4BYF operating the 23cm station.


Both the 2m and 23cm beams up.


Thick cloud blanketed the (hilltop) site for several hours on the Saturday afternoon.


Peter GM4DTH, Robin GM4YPL and Andy MM0FMF.


However, the cloud cleared, giving way to sunshine just in time for Colin's barbecue. 


BBQ cook at work.


Great selection of BBQ items.


 View from the site to the nearby hills including the tower of the local GB3DG repeater.


Operation continued well into the evening.


Saturday evening whisky tasting.


Sunday morning and time to lower the 6m beam to magically convert it into a 4m beam.


Using the same boom, the 9 x 6m elements were replaced (in the correct holes) by the 11 x 4m elements.


 Brian GM4DIJ and Mike GM4IGS.


4m beam almost ready for erection.



A problem arose with the 23cm beam requiring it to be lowered and several nuts tightened!


Andy MM0FMF (R) helping Robin GM4YPL pack up his camper-van after the contest ended at 3pm.


Pete GM4BYF had quite a lot to load (and you should have seen Colin's Landrover)! 


Final group photo - slightly different from the one at the top - Pete is not wearing his 'halo'!