This year's Field Day plan
At the May Board meeting the category of 5A was selected for this year's operation. In addition we will have a UHF/VHF station that does not count in our total of 5 stations. Due to our position in the sunspot cycle, meaning 15m and 10m contacts may be few in number, we need to be prepared to have our HF operation split between 80m, 40m and 20m most of the time. Since we are limited to one phone, one CW and one digital station per band, we felt it better to use new operators on the 5 counted rather than setting up a GOTA station which would likely be inactive much of the time, or be relegated to a band and mode that would net few contacts.
For those who were present last year, we had two shelters. One was adjacent to the playground while the other was much closer to the parking lot across from Holly's visitor center easy-up. This year we plan to use all 3 shelters, putting two across from Holly's visitor center easy-up... possibly with a second easy-up covering the area between their entrances. The third shelter will be where the CW stations were set up several years ago, to the left rear of the clubhouse and about 100' beyond the tower.
From the playground, stretching toward Queen Anne Bridge Road we will have an 80m dipole, flanked by a 40m inverted-V and a 20m inverted-V. All 3 antennas will be cut for the phone end of the band. At the opposite corner of the grounds we will have an identical antenna arrangement but cut for the CW/Digital end of the band. The 40m/20m off-center-fed dipole will be in essentially the same position as the last few years, with 20m and 15m inverted-V's flanking it, cut for phone. Stretching between the off-center-fed dipole upper mast and the 80 meter mast beyond the playground at the lower end, we will have a 160 meter dipole. Like 15m and 10m operation we feel this antenna will get lesser use. Antennas for 6m/2m/70cm will be set up at a high point close to the twin shelters. FYI we to use inverted-V's because the club owns only 6 masts, and we will be using all 6 to hold dipoles. The dipole and inverted-V antenna's will be set to aim 10% north of west, almost directly through San Francisco to Hawaii. The placement of the antennas at the far end of the grounds and at opposing corners is to avoid interference between them.
The plan is to have two phone stations in one shelter, with 250' feed lines down to the antennas near the playground. We feel the signal loss is worth the ability to bring those stations closer to where visitors arrive. Feedlines to the 20m and 10m stations will also be available to this shelter. In the adjacent shelter we will have UHF/VHF, and a full time digital station. Richard will be able to set up his 'satellite bonus station' and his 'battery power bonus station' in this shelter as well. The 160m stations cable will be available for either shelter depending on the situation.
The shelter behind and to the left of the clubhouse will be used for 2 CW stations, if and when 2 CW operators are available. Our plan is that both of these stations will be wired for CW, digital and phone. This is so that we can add a second digital station when a second CW operator is not present. And we can create a third phone station as needed if no CW operator is present.
All shelters should have 2m HT's on at all times, so that we can coordinate band and mode changes between shelters.
I hope you like the plan so far, and will be willing, ready and able to come join in the fun on the last full weekend in June. 73's!