VK5RSB 6 metre repeater update

The 6 metre repeater, VK5RSB 6 at Summertown, has now been serviced, the RF transmit power amplifier has been repaired, the receiver checked for specifications and the repeater is ready for re-installation back at its site. This is all subject to a replacement antenna and the service crew availability.

A temporary antenna has been re-built and will be installed as soon as is practicable. The mechanics of the construction of this antenna will be a limitation for long term use in the harsh environment at the top of the 30 metre tower, so it will need to be replaced as soon as a suitable alternative is made available.

AREG has requested for quotes from the “big three” antenna manufacturers and only one has responded with a firm quotation for a heavy duty antenna cut for 53.750 MHz, which is now being reviewed for consideration and possible purchase.

As the loss of the antenna was unexpected, AREG would appreciate any financial assistance to help pay for the replacement antenna. So, if you are able to make a donation, any amount will be much appreciated. You may use the “Donate” button to the left of this blog to donate, or alternatively contact one of the AREG Committee members for assistance.

If you are able to donate, please add “VK5RSB 6” and your call sign so that the donation may be identified specifically in support of the 6m antenna replacement.

73, Ben VK5BB

AREG November General Meeting 2014


UPDATE: The slides from Mark VK5QI’s talk can be found here.

Just a reminder that the next AREG general meeting will be this coming Friday the 21st of November starting at 7:45pm.

This month we have a short business meeting, guest speaker followed by coffee and cake.

You can find out more details here

Hope to see you there.

73, Matthew VK5ZM

VK5RSB 6M Repeater off-air!

VK5RSB 6M Antenna

As you can see, the VK5RSB 6m repeater antenna is not looking too good! A combination of recent lightning strikes and high winds has caused the radome to fail, and the antenna to effectively snap in two. As a result, the 6m repeater is offline until a new antenna can be sourced.

VK5RSB 6m is in a prime location on the Summertown ridge line, and is the best coverage 6m repeater in VK5. Donations to help fund the new antenna would be greatly appreciated – use the donation button to the left of this post, and use a reference of “RSB6M” and your callsign. Any amount will help!


Project Horus Launch 9th November 2014

On Sunday the 9th of November the AREG members assisted Project Horus and Launchbox with a double balloon launch from Mt Barker.


Filling 2kg Balloon with 5.5m^3 of Helium

These two Balloon launches contained nine High School science experiments along with an experimental satellite payload from the University of South Australia.  They also carried the usual Project Horus cutdown and telemetry payloads to ensure recovery.

Thankfully the first payload was recovered from near Harogate and was relatively intact, after a freefall from 33kms sans chute.

The second payload made a miraculous landing into a farmers field just outside of Palmer, thanks to Andy VK5AKH for sharing the footage.

More specific details about the flights, altitudes and flight paths can be found on the Project Horus website.


Telemetry & Cutdown ready to go


First Balloon Train ready for Launch !










A big thanks has to go to our volunteer ground crew Gary VK5FGRY, Dennis VK5FDEN and his wife Irene, for cooking us a brilliant breakfast.  They also put up and took down the Marquee and made sure the oval was nice and clean while we’d all taken off to go and chase the Balloons…  Gary also made sure we had plenty of photos of the event, so it stands to reason why we’ve no photo of him to put on the blog (*grin*).


Breakfast of Legends !

I’m confident that everyone enjoyed the day and can’t wait for the next adventure in the coming months !

73 Matt, VK5ZM

AREG November 2014 General Meeting

The next AREG General Meeting is on Friday the 21st of November, at the Reedbeds Community Hall doors open 7:45pm.

This month there will be a short 30 minute business meeting held starting at 8:00pm sharp.  This month we will try a new format for the meeting in an effort to streamline proceedings.

MarkPrototypeThis month we have arranged Mark VK5QI to present a technical talk entitled “<Insert Radio Name Here> – A open source teaching SDR for Linux Conf 2015”, starting at 8:45pm.

In this talk Mark will discuss the Softrock-based SDR he is developing for the Open Radio Mini conference, to be held at “Linux Conf 2015” in Auckland, New Zealand. Some basic SDR theory will be covered, along with some demo’s of the prototype kit.

We’re certainly fingers crossed that by the time our meeting comes around that this radio has a project name !

After the presentation there will be the usual  “rag chew” over coffee, tea and cake until stumps.

We look forward to seeing you there.

73, Matt VK5ZM