I wanted an aerial for portable use, so I thought I’d try a kit from Sotabeams, called a Linked Dipole Kit.

It contains all of the pieces to allow you to make up a multi-band dipole, using crocodile clips to connect together the sections of the elements, tuning for different bands.

I made mine for 17m, 20m and 40m.  Putting it on the air, with a lightweight fishing pole as a mast, it worked pretty well.

The kit can be bought from here

You can listen to my feature on this aerial on the ICQPodcast here.

My New Year’s present to myself is a Yaesu FT-DX3000

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It’s got lots of bells and whistles I need to learn about, so will no doubt be reading the manual for weeks.

So far it’s very impressive. The receiver can pick up things my old Kenwood TS570 couldn’t hear.


Having spent quite a few years using Microsoft Flight Simulator X on various laptops, I thought it was time to get a proper PC and controls.

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I’ve quickly realised that flying fully “manual”, is a lot harder than it looks.

The guys at Angle of attack have created some great free instructional videos, which they call “Aviator 90”.  Have a look here.

Spent some time at Panshanger airfield at the weekend, and was taken up in a Piper Cherokee, 2 seater aircraft. It was great fun, but was a little windy which meant a slightly bumpy ride. The pilot even let me take the controls for a while.




2 trips this last month.

Spent a weekend in Albufeira in Portugal earlier in June.

The spent the last 8 days of June in Florida.

This consisted of 3 days in Orlando, including a day at Disney’s magic kingdom.

Then 4 days in Lauderdale by the Sea, which is next to Fort Lauderdale.  We were the only people at this small hotel very close to the beach. We were the only one’s at the hotel so had the place and the pool to ourselves.

We spend at day at the Everglades safari park, which mainly involved taking an airboat ride and looking at some Aligators.

We finally drove down to Miami for 1 night and stayed at the Ritz Carlton.  Very posh hotel, with it’s own private part of the beach.

Finally, a long drive back to Orlando to drop the rental car off, and back to blighty Virgin Atlantic Premium Economy.