Radio Preppers

General Category => Net Activity => Topic started by: gil on July 01, 2020, 05:04:44 am

Title: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 01, 2020, 05:04:44 am
Hello.

I am leaving for Spain on July 7th in an attempt to bring my sailboat Ragnar back to France. Hopefully the boat will be put back in the water on the 9th and I should set sail on the 10th. The problem is getting to Spain with ever changing restrictions on travel due to Covid-19. If all goes well and I can get there and leave port, the trip should last about ten days. The boat is a Havsfidra 20 built in Sweden, a good ocean-going full-keel double-ender sailboat.

As far as radios I think I will bring my Minion SDR and MTR3b; subject to change... The antenna will be the Chameleon MPAS with the whip. I am also carrying an inReach satellite beacon. You will be able to follow me at: https://share.garmin.com/svragnar (https://share.garmin.com/svragnar)

I am not sure if I will be able to be on the air during the day but I plan on following the coast and stop at night, so most likely will be on the air in the evening, starting at around 19:00Z. Frequencies will probably be 14300, and I might browse around 20m, 14285 and around. I should be also on 10123 CW. I'll have probably only one antenna so it will be 20 or 30m. I might bring a random wire with a 9:1 UNUN hung from the mast spreader, but not sure about that.

For those who might be living in the south of France, I will also listen to HAM VHF on coastal repeaters, as well as 145.5MHz. So far I have programmed only Toulon, but I will add more to my VX6. For those who might also be maritime mobile in the area, I will of course monitor marine VHF channel 16 as required by law. My MMSI is 227245060. I have an AIS receiver but no transponder, so the Garmin map will be the only way to follow my progress, or lack thereof.

I was planning on using JS8Call but could not get the hardware on time and my laptop crapped out, so no computer aboard.

What I would like is that you guys report any contact with me here. I won't be able to update this thread starting on the 7th.

I will be using a very short antenna but the Mediterranean ground plane should help ;-) My starting point is smack between Barcelona and Valencia, destination is Antibes.

This is a very exciting but also stressful endeavour for me after losing my previous boat Dagny in the Bahamas at the end of 2015. I am also not in optimal physical shape after this long confinent and I know it will be a very physically demanding trip on an unknown boat. Wish me luck... I will update this thread until the 6th, then it will be radio only. Also watch Twitter as I should be within phone network at times and might be able to update Facebook as well. You are welcome to repost here for those who do not use these applications.

Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: Alex. on July 01, 2020, 07:36:50 am
Have a good en save journey!
Maybe you're be able to make some video footage of your trip? would be awesome.

73's
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 06, 2020, 05:56:28 pm
Thanks you, I certainly will!

Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: RadioRay on July 10, 2020, 07:10:22 am
Gil's Garmin track shows that he has launched into the Med Sea , making almost five knots !
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: mjvanek on July 10, 2020, 09:03:12 am
Bon Voyage Gil. Are you sailing solo? Will be listening for you in the evenings and following your progress during the day.

Martin Vanek KN4MNA
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: rah on July 10, 2020, 05:13:15 pm
RadioRay could you post a link to Gil's Garmin map, please?
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: mjvanek on July 10, 2020, 05:23:44 pm
https://share.garmin.com/svragnar
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: rah on July 10, 2020, 05:39:17 pm
Thanks, mjvanek.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: Old Radio Bloke on July 10, 2020, 05:41:27 pm
Has anyone managed to work Gil or heard him /MM?

Searched on DX cluster but no spots.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: RadioRay on July 11, 2020, 11:00:25 am
I believe that we know this fellow :-).  Port tack and a beautiful day.

>>> Gil said that he will try to be on freq tonight. Looking at his course and speed , I am assuming his QTP/QTH should be the coast slightly west of Barcelona.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: RadioRay on July 11, 2020, 05:02:20 pm
Reverse Beacon Network showed the following.  // Gil reported that these are fake, not him. //

F4WBY   10118.0   CW CQ   31 dB   17 wpm   2033z 11 Jul
F4WBY   10118.1   CW CQ   50 dB   17 wpm   2033z 11 Jul
F4WBY   10118.0   CW CQ   34 dB   17 wpm   2033z 11 Jul
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: Old Radio Bloke on July 11, 2020, 05:09:06 pm
I tried calling Gil on 10118 and 10123 but no luck.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 11, 2020, 06:07:03 pm
Hi guys! Safe and sound in Vilanova. 30m was closed when I called, bummer... BTW there are three high-db reports of me on 10118 on the 11th. Those are fake.

I will try 14300 during the at sea next, but no promises... Unfortunately it is always late when I'm ready to go on the air.. On top of that there is a contest going on!

TTYL! And thanks Ray!

Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: RadioRay on July 11, 2020, 06:39:04 pm
Gil said : ..."there are three high-db reports of me on 10118 on the 11th. Those are fake."

That explained those huge signals in the Canadian/US Pacific North-West, yet nothing in Europe at that time.

I hope that you get some good rest tonight and a continuing fine sail.


>Ray
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 12, 2020, 04:16:33 am
EA3/F4WBY/MM all day 14300.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 12, 2020, 08:01:52 am
Someone tried CW on 14300, heard. Try again.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 12, 2020, 08:33:44 am
All 26wpm reports are fakes.

Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 12, 2020, 10:41:13 am
First MM Contact F4WBZ Jim on 10123.
Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 13, 2020, 04:03:03 am
Listening to 10123 today EA3/F4WBY/MM.

Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: B738 on July 13, 2020, 07:24:43 am
Hi Gil!

Heard your CQ on 30m CW this morning. You were pretty week, but I thought a QSO was doable.
But the QSB made me look like an idiot! Sorry to say, but every time you answered me, you just disappeared into the noise.  :-(
Then later I heard you calling CQ again. This time I let some time go by, to make sure the QSB did not rear its ugly head again. Satisfied, I answered you. But same thing happened.
Oh well, in any case good to hear you on the air, and good to see on the map that you are making progress back to France.

73 from the "CIA Norwegian CW station" that never manage to finish the QSO. (I do think I heard you get my CALL correct, so I'm not going to write it here.  :-)
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: 9a4na on July 13, 2020, 08:39:49 am
Hi Gil,
Heard weak callsign /mm yesterday on 14300 and tried to call but not sure was that You or someone else.
Following you on map and hope to hear you on air.
Good luck.
Zeljko
9a4na

Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 14, 2020, 11:15:39 am
Today and tomorrow 10123 CW. Last message before being out of cell service. Tomorrow night, Toulon VHF repeater.

Three MM contacts yesterday on 10123...

Thanks Yall ;-)
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: Old Radio Bloke on July 14, 2020, 04:26:48 pm
20:25 utc: tried calling on 10.123, no luck. Will listen on 10.123 for a while.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: RadioRay on July 15, 2020, 10:24:46 am
If anyone makes contact via radio ( I am too far away in the USA) please post details here :-)

RadioRay ...- .-

Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: 9a4na on July 15, 2020, 10:51:09 am
Hello Gil,
Following your progress on garmin map. This last 24 hrs trip mast have been a challenge.
Take care.
Zeljko
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: RadioRay on July 15, 2020, 11:07:21 am
I agree!

It looked like a rough night out there. Satellite weather last night indicated constant 27kt winds with gusts to 40kt ,  quartering/beam seas average wave-height of 2 meters with occasional larger waves (up to 2x) . On-watch in the cockpit must have been exhausting. Today's forecast looks a little better.

73 de Ray  ..._ ._

Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: Olivier on July 15, 2020, 02:53:37 pm
Bonsoir <Gil, bonsoir à tous.
QRV sur le relais VHF de Toulon ce soir (15 juillet).
Bon vent et bonne mer!
73
Olivier F4CLS
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: JS6UEY on July 15, 2020, 06:51:23 pm
Tomorrow run the British blockade?! :-)
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: RadioRay on July 15, 2020, 09:09:15 pm
SAFE @ 02:51 , in a marina 8 km south/east of Toulon. Sailing across in rough weather and navigating into an unknown small marina in the dark, >solo<, with little or no sleep... VERY difficult.

Well done Gil! 

de RadioRay  ..._ ._

Ps.  It may take some time to feel normal to walk on UNmoving land after those days in a bumpy sea.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: mjvanek on July 16, 2020, 09:18:49 am
40 hrs solo on open seas. Holy Sh*t. Gotta respect that. Glad you're safely back to French soil Gil.
Title: Gil In Home Port - Safe. Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: RadioRay on July 18, 2020, 11:16:23 am
Gil is safe in the home port. Now time to RECOVER from his 'vacation'.

-RadioRay  ..._ ._
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: Zener on July 18, 2020, 05:44:29 pm
I'm glad he is home ok, (no mishaps), was a wee bit concerned when he said his fitness level was low before the trip. He'll sleep for a while. Followed his journey, guesstimated he's done 730km over 102 hours sea time at over 7km/hr.

Great job, all the best.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 19, 2020, 12:32:38 am
Thanks Ray and all of you guys for your support and atemps to contact me, much appreciated. I did make a few contacts. It will take some time to edit the video. Not as much radio as I hoped but you will see why... I am safe and sound at home, though exhausted. 40hrs at the helm in 7 Beaufort winds is something I did not think I could do. There was a few SAR operations those two nights, fortunately I wasn't the object of one. It is a constant psychological and physical battle to stay on the boat, not being thrown off and exert constant pressure and movement on the tiller. Legs, arms, core muscles, everything works constantly at max capacity. The boat was laid on its side twice and I was both times times thrown in the opposite stanchions, "launched" would be a better expression because I am pretty sure I was briefly airborne for an instant. Thanks to my safety harness! I could only use my electric auto-pilot for a few hours, as it could not cope with the conditions. But then, what other choice is there? To me staying home watching TV is more risky ;-) in the grand scheme of things...
Now I am catching up on sleep and recovering, which will take a couple days...
TTYL :-)

Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: mjvanek on July 19, 2020, 03:48:51 pm
Thumbs up Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 22, 2020, 09:03:08 am
Thanks!
Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on July 24, 2020, 09:26:58 am
Hello everyone :-)

Back to normal, almost, with a sailboat in port! Just to conclude, I found operating maritime mobile very difficult, and commercial radios completely inadequate for the marine environment, no surprise there... You simply can't have a radio in the cockpit, period. Either it will get sprayed with saltwater or be washed overboard, and the little RG-316 antenna cable isn't going to prevent that. You may fish it back but it will likely never work again. My Yaesu VX6 did well though, to monitor marine channel 16.
My solution will be to install a PRC-320 inside the cabin for voice comms and a 30m QCX for CW with extended key and headset cables to the cockpit. I will place those radios at mid-level in the cabin between bilge and roof. You always have to think of what would happen if the boat was, however briefly, upside-down. I also need to think of a means to receive messages while under-way, which may involve a Raspberry Pi and JS8Call, maybe Winlink.

I do not know if my salted Minion SDR will work again, and I better hurry troubleshooting it before more damage occurs...

Boat-wise, I have a long list of modifications and safety equipment to add. I just installed two new batteries... Solar panels will follow. I am looking at Solbian but it's very expensive; not this year probably. Right now I am setting it up for safe coastal cruising, with the objective of upgrading to an ocean-crossing vessel as time progresses. There is a lot of cosmetic work to do, inside and out.

Now let's resume our regular program ;-)

Gil.
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: NCGunDude on July 26, 2020, 10:27:18 am
Gil, I really enjoyed your maritime videos. I'm looking for a Compac 19 or something similar to trailer. Looking forward to getting on the water. Your videos are an inspiration!
Title: Re: Maritime mobile following, July 10-19 2020.
Post by: gil on August 03, 2020, 04:30:29 am
I can only recommend a full-keel boat :-)

Gil.