CQ WW SSB Contest
The story of Disaster Contesting - Fight against Natures' Force
Information available before the contest :
- Storm weather was announced one week before the contest
- Heavy rain and lightning was possible allover the country
- Due to this information the decision was made to use only the kt34a in stead of big brother kt34-X-a. This to prevent rotor dammage due to the high torsion
of the 10m boom.
- After one hour of contesting, lightnings could be seen from the shack. Operation stopped for about 1 hour
- On Saturday wind peaks of 100 km/h were noticed. Pylone, erected to 21m, was moving as never before. KT34A seemed to survive.
- Weather specialists announced storm on Sunday, with peaks between 110 and 140 km/h. The storm already started on Saturday and was continuously
increasing in power...
I had to take the decision to give up all low band activities and stop contest operation to perform some outside works : Pylone pulled back from 21m to 8m. 160m and 80m antenna removed. So it was clear that no more multi's should be available on 160 and 80m. The 40m sloper could be kept but only at 8m high. After all, this seemed a good intermediate solution for 40m. Several Caraibean countries could be worked during the night with this smal antenna.
- On Sunday, the wind speed increased very fastly and at 10 h zt some parts of our roof were blown away. Operation stopped to check the dammage on the house. The yagi suffered and a next decision was needed : Fix yagi to the south-west / north east axis to avoid total destruction. 10m and 15m operation to the States was delayed.
The storm arrived at its highest point at 16h zt with speeds near to 140 km/h. This didn't seem reality anymore and contest concentration was replaced by
|Setup on start of the contest
||Setup on Saturday evening
Finished with a symbolic 13 13 qso's remembering
two days of Murphy's wildest dream.
This isn't the expected Million, but after all not that bad - taken into account the miserable conditions outside - .
After all, the storm - labeled as "huricane" - was the hardest in 12 years, causing 4 victims and
dammage to houses in all regions of the country.
See you in the next contest !
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