THURROCK ACORNS ARC
A small, welcoming amateur radio club based in Grays (Essex, England) close to the town centre. Primarily created for the local Amateur Radio community the Club welcomes anyone interested in any of the many aspects of Amateur Radio.
Please feel free to come to a meeting on the third Tuesday of the month, or contact us via the general enquiries form.
THURROCK TRAINING TEAM
Thurrock Training Team is a small group of enthusiastic licensed Radio Amateurs dedicated to encouraging more people into The Hobby.
If you are interested in being trained for, or require more information about, any of the three licence levels (Foundation, Intermediate and Full) please do contact us via the training enquiries form.
Acorns Meeting May 2019
Eddie, G0BKL, gave a presentation on antenna modelling using a free software programme called MMANA-GAL. You input key parameters such as length and width of wire, height off the ground and then optimise, for example, for best SWR. The computer produces a plot of the radiation pattern. This was applied to a SOTAbeam dipole which is an inverted V with the two elements at 120º (rather than 180º) as they help support the central pole along with a guy rope. All plugged into the program which shows how this configuration of dipole is more omni-directional than a conventional figure of 8.
Nick G4HCK (Chair), MMANA-GAL image by GØBKL
Lightship Café Event 26th May 2019
A community run family-day on Sunday 26th May at the Lightship Café in Grays, Essex attracted hundreds of visitors to a diverse array of events including face-painting and a DJ. The Café kindly allowed Thurrock Acorns Amateur Radio Club to set up a stall. In fact we had two stalls; one outside with the crowd and one inside with an array of radios on display.
We had a prime spot near the Café entrance with two noisy Morse Code oscillators, run by Stella GØEKP, to attract attention. Louis was one such visitor who was awarded a Club Certificate having successfully send his name in Morse Code. This enticed him and his Mum into the main display so see a range of kit from hand-held radios to a computer running advanced amateur band Data Mode.
The event was a very worthwhile opportunity to introduce people to the hobby.
Nick G4HCK (Chair), photos by Nigel MØICH
Dog & Partridge Event 12th May 2019
Thurrock Acorns Amateur Radio Club was lucky enough to get the special event call sign GB2PUB when operating from the car park of the “Dog and Partridge” in North Stifford, Essex.
The event was well advertised but the problem was, come the day, it lashed down with rain, brightened up for a moment and then lashed down again. Did we allow this deter our event from taking place? Dead right we did! We would have had wet equipment, annoyed club members and no visitors.
Instead we postponed it one day when the sun was out and had a remarkably successful demonstration event where the operating doubled up as an opportunity to test antennas and we were open to visitors. The moral of the story; like many things in amateur radio; need to compromise and adapt to get it to work.
Nick G4HCK (TAARC Chair), photo by Eddie GØBKL
G4OAD Memorial Trophy 2019
Acorns Member Nigel MØICH (left) has been awarded the 2019 G4OAD Memorial Trophy for his contribution to Morse Code by the Chair of EssexCW, Dean G4WQI (Right).
Nigel contributes to three CW nets including the Acorns CW net every Monday on 144.180MHz. He is also a volunteer CW operator at HMS Belfast (GB2RN) having visited the ship as part of a Acorns Club outing in 2017.
Photo by Tony GØYJI
What is Amateur Radio?
Amateur (Ham) Radio is arguably the most popular scientific hobby! The Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB) defines The Hobby this way…
“Amateur radio is a popular technical hobby and volunteer public service that uses designated radio frequencies for non-commercial exchange of messages, wireless experimentation, self-training, and emergency communications.
Amateur Radio is the only hobby governed by international treaty.
As a radio amateur you are able to transmit radio signals on a number of frequency bands allocated specifically to the radio amateurs.”
In reality it is much, much more. Have a look at the RSGB videos page for an idea of some of the other aspects of the hobby.