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                 D4 Cape Verde Holiday- DX- Pedition 2011

              IOTA: AF-086                              WAG Contest

              Santa Maria, Sal Island

Hello friends of HAM Radio,
again, my XYL and I got the travel bug and I was QRV from Cape Verde during WAG contest from 11th to 18th Oct 2011. There is the island of Sal with beautiful sandy beaches and a beautiful fishing village, Santa Maria. I remembered my QSO with Antonio Xara D44TD who lives there and who provided accommodation for a German team at the Hotel Sobrado in 2009. I dropped an email to Xara and he promised his support immediately. Unfortunately the Hotel Sobrado was unavailable and so he recommended to us the Hotel Oasis Belorizonte with bungalows directly at the Atlantic Ocean. Specifically he recommended to me the bungalow 251, in the front row at the beach with a free view to Europe. I can only confirm that this Hotel is HAM Radio friendly and the people assisted me in building and dismantling the antennas. I recommend this Hotel to all of you who would like to operate from Sal island.The level of comfort corresponded to our expectations as well. Xara was very very helpful in obtaining a temporary license. You must know that there is no CEPT scheme applied for amateur radio by the national authority ANAC. They deal with HAM Radio licence applications along the way. Although with the help of colleagues I had submitted my licence application in Portuguese and Xara approached the President of the ANAC several times and I sent my documents to the authority countless, it took more than 4 months until I got my callsign D44TZN assigned. My thanks to Xara, ANAC, DL3KBQ and I4UFH!

QSL - card 

After the formalities were completed, we flew from the autumnal Cologne to Sal where we enjoyed air temperatures of 30°C and water temperature of 24°C. The QSL card above gives an impression of the beach life. This summer environment is an important prerequisite for my XYL to pursue her hobbies. Unfortunately, it was not granted to meet Xara D44TD personally, as he was in Portugal at this time. Maybe it will work out the next time!

Diouf fixes the feeder cable 

Thanks God I had downloaded an application on my iPhone in Cologne, which allowed me to make me understand in Portuguese. So, I could explain that I needed a ladder to climb the nearby Palm to fix my doublet antenna. Immediately the hotel mechanic Diouf was assigned to me. Diouf helped me with his knowledge and his toolbox to span the 2 x 20 m doublet between the Palm tree and a street lamp. The twin-lead feeder was a 300 OHM ribbon cables from DX-WIRE, See above how Diouf fixed the cable. This feeder is ideal to pull it through a window or a door! Unfortunately, there were no high fixing points in the local area, so that the doublet hung too low and the antenna characteristics was quite bad for DX. But for that Diouf was not to be able to help it!

Triple Leg  low hanging doublet

Top left you see the triple leg antenna by DK7ZB. I used a telescopic 12 m fiber-glass pole with a clamp set and a radial connection plate from Spider Beam. The 300 OHM twin-lead feeder was connected via a special RF choke using RG 302 cable from DX-WIRE to the SG-239 Smartuner. The matchbox was connected via a RF choke using RG 58 cable to the FT-897 transceiver with 100 W output. This configuration worked quite good and I received consistently good reports from DX and from critical friends. Thanks to Herbert DF7DJ and Uli DJ9IE! The doublet was used for 80 m mostly whilst the triple leg was used for all other bands. In future I would save this antenna due to missing high fixing points.

Endlich Contest

The radio operation was a real pleasure and allows each HAM heart beat faster. D4 was very demanded particularly in CW on the WARC bands and I had some pile-ups. Thanks God that my XYL gave to me a KENT paddle at Christmas 2010 and I had improved my CW capabilities a little bit. So I could master the situation. However, there is still some room for improvement. I am grateful for the experience made. During the WAG I made 348 QSOs and I worked 78 multipliers. Once again, the result of 81198 points was sufficient enough to become the "continental winner of Africa" in my category. At the last day a hurricane bent my pole strongly and consequently the wire broke. The right time to dismantle the station and to say good bye! Ultimately, 1040 QSOs were in the log! Thank you to all of you who worked me and a big thank you to my XYL who actively supported me! Where do we go next?

no connection - no DX and my XYL had some fun too ;-)


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