Simon, GM0SCA

| November 2, 2021

Early in 2021 Simon achieved a couple of the 50MHz awards for squares and countries. He is close to achieving IARU Region 1 Class 1, in addition to chasing other major awards including 5-Band DXCC.

Simon was first licensed in 1985 as G1NWN followed quickly by passing the Morse test and gaining his current call sign. He had started out as a listener, prompted by his then Physics teacher, aided and abetted by Simon’s Dad who bought him the legendary HAC single-valve receiver. He recalls that the receiver “worked splendidly during the day but ‘went wonky’ in the evenings as it would only receive foreign stations.  It wasn’t until the physics teacher explained why, that I realised it wasn’t wonky after all…!”.

Some years later, radio having been side-lined by an interest in vintage and classic cars, Simon realised that his QTH in a valley was not really vhf-friendly, but with a W3DZZ trap dipole he could get out on HF to the extent that he gained his first award: the IARU Worked All Continents award.

Simon uploaded his logs to LOTW and found himself eligible for a number of awards from ARRL/CQ. He also realised he was well on the way to a number of RSGB awards, so he has been focused in recent years on those targets, as mentioned earlier.

Although continuing to chase the elusive confirmations to complete the IARU R1 and 5B DXCC awards, Simon is still very keen to build his 6m scores in order to achieve higher increments in the squares and countries awards on that band, and he is interested in meteor scatter operating on VHF.

He has also been branching out into new domains, putting together a station for working via QO-100, the geostationary satellite. Antennas are in a state of evolution, an elderly SteppIR on the ground for the time being, usurped by a rotatable 40m dipole and 6m/4m beam.

During lockdown, Simon found the RSGB National Radio Centre daily 80m net both informative and at times amusing. QSOs on the net pointed him towards some additional radio topics, including new software packages which he has been experimenting with as an aid to tracking awards progress, identifying both gaps in his progress towards particular awards, and also new technologies that can be put to work to gain additional knowledge, contacts and thus awards.

“The pleasure and satisfaction from achieving something, even if it was quite insignificant has, in these difficult times, been a huge help to me.  And if the end result is another certificate for the wall – so much the better!”

Category: Award Stories