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Jongensgat7 DXpedition

September 13-17, 2010

by John Plimmer

John and Dawn Plimmer arrived in good weather after a three hour drive, marred by four time consuming roadblocks for road repairs along the way. We found the cottage in good order and started the tedious job of carting all the heavy gear up the 35m/100ft high sand dune. That's got too much for us old septuagenarians and we vowed this would be our last trip to Jongensgat, as ideal as it is.

We had heard of another beach cottage an hour further up the road towards Mossel Bay, so Thursday we went up and had a look, but the cottage was primitive and disgusting and the lie of the land for the antennas was not good, so that was out. I will rather go to Seefontein twice a year instead, as it is ideal and the DX to N. America is superb.

Vince Stevens, my co DXer arrived about an hour after us and soon got started on stringing out his two beverages and my one. Sunset was at 6.20 local time and by five thirty we were all ready to go. I had my Kiwa MW Loop rigged up after its years layoff for breakdown, but now all was well and it was soon evident that it was working champion and was better than the beverage Vince had laid out for me. Perth 720 came in an hour before sunset, boding well for the evenings DX. Just after sunset, 891 5AN ABC Adelaide was booming in like a local at 1639z, very satisfying. Monday night and Tuesday morning I did not do very well, the Kiwa Loop was far outperforming the beverage, so I discussed this with Vince on Tuesday and he said he would add more length to the 200m he had laid out, on Tuesday night it was longer at about 350m.

Tuesday was a nice day and we decided to have our traditional braai (barbeque) - Vince made mountains of boerewors (spicy farmers sausage), lamb chops and steak and Dawn had some chicken kebabs. Vince washed his down with a single malt Scotch and Dawn and I had a fine local sauvignon blanc.

John listening
John and his Kiwa Loop and Icom

Meanwhile I had brought along my Perseus SDR and could not make head or tail of the recordings, they were all noise and no signal. I checked everything exhaustively but could not improve on the poor performance, so after another full go at it on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning I gave up and disconnected it in disgust. Later back at home QTH I got it working again satisfactorily by upgrading to version 3beta1 and restoring factory defaults settings. I never discovered what made it dysfunctional on the DXpedition. A great pity as the LF NDB DXing was exceptionally good on Wednesday and it would have been lovely to have the full Perseus recordings.

Tuesday night I did better on the extended beverage but the Kiwa was still better, indicting this antenna was not all that great. Wednesday morning I was only getting Brazilians, which I am not much interested in, so I had a full session on LF NDB DXing and got some nice Brazilians from across the Atlantic. These beacons are very low powered, so getting them 6,200 km's/3,800 miles away is a great thrill.

Wednesday evening was good "meat and potatoes" catches, but nothing really that I haven't heard before. Thursday morning likewise. Vince and I discussed my beverage that was not performing too well in its New York/Perth alignment and he decided to realign it more N/S parallel to his very well performing "magic" N/S beverage.

Violent waves
Violent surging waves at Jongensgat

Wednesday a winter Antarctic storm swept over us, and the waves were huge, crashing on the rocks below us and sending up giant sprays of foam. The waves were by far the biggest I have ever seen in the seven years we have been coming to Jongensgat. We did a session of shopping in nearby little town of Stilbaai, I caught up in an internet cafe, and we took back lovely fresh fish and chips to the cottage for lunch.

Thursday we went looking for the new proposed cottage, which as described earlier was a huge disappointment. Vince's "magic" N/S beverage was really producing the results, but mine was still not great, so Vince tweaked it a bit by straightening it out some and keeping it a bit more evenly 3ft/1m above the deck. This gave me great results on Thursday evening as in quick order I got ABC 5PA Naracoorte the far side of Adelaide, and a gospel station in the Philippines, two great catches.

Friday morning I got "Big L" in Holland and R. Ulster, both nice catches. As the sun came up, 1700 kHz started strengthening and well after sunrise I ID' "1700 KVNS" Brownsville TX and "San Diego 1700" - The XEPE Tecate station is 16000km/10000m away and is always a great catch, although it is often heard here and at Seefontein.

Vince and I were both getting mystery stations relaying BBC WS - only on return home and enquiring on the web it was revealed that ABC Australian stations are now relaying BBC in the wee hours of the night.

Vince had a great DXpedition, one of his best ever. He was glad we staid an extra day and got lots of low powered Aussies that he was after. He kept asking me "can you hear this" and I couldn't, so I called his N/S beverage his "magic" antenna. Details of Vince's highly performing magic N/S antenna are:
length 225m/750ft - Wire was 0.8mm/.03inch enamel copper, running dead straight - elevated about 1m/3.5ft above the ground on average I'd say..
Didn't take compass bearings but I guess it was pointing magnetic North-ish...(336deg)
Wire was terminated into a homemade 9:1 balun (Converting Z (impedance) from 450 to 50 ohm) and then run into the cottage via RG58U coax.
No earth terminations, so antenna was bi-directional.

Altogether, not my best DXpedition at Jongensgat, but its always a great pleasure to be there, both for the idealic seaside scenery and the excellent radio reception. A bad day at Jongensgat is always a hundred times better than the very best day at home QTH in Montagu.

John Plimmers logs - Icom IC-7600 RX and various beverages, best of which was N/S 200m, and the Kiwa MW Loop performed superbly.

Freq Time Date Mode Lang Station Town Country Power Remarks
350.00 223 15-Sep-10 CW VTR VITORIA BRAZIL 0
360.00 224 15-Sep-10 CW ASN ASCENSION ISL 0
365.00 239 15-Sep-10 CW CVL CARAVELAS BRAZIL 0
375.00 304 15-Sep-10 CW UA UNID 0
400.00 354 15-Sep-10 CW CAX CAXIAS (RDJ) BRAZIL 0 6200 KMS
400.00 354 15-Sep-10 CW KL UNID 0 MAYBE KB KARIBA
540.00 1817 14-Sep-10 MW VV KBC SWAHILI SVCE VOI KENYA 100
585.00 1741 13-Sep-10 MW EE 6PB ABC PERTH AUSTRALIA 5 KIWA BEST
594.00 1815 14-Sep-10 MW EE MBC LILONGWE MALAWI 30
630.00 2324 13-Sep-10 MW SS R. RIVADAVIA BEUNOS AIRES ARGENTINA 5
666.00 1812 14-Sep-10 MW FF R. REUNION ST. PIERRE REUNION 20
675.00 1815 15-Sep-10 MW EE MBC EKWENDINI MALAWI 50
684.00 1806 15-Sep-10 MW FF MAUR B C MALHERBES MAURITIUS 10 BBC NX EE 1ST
710.00 329 14-Sep-10 MW SS R. DIEZ BEUNOS AIRES ARGENTINA 50
756.00 1803 14-Sep-10 MW EE MBC NX BLANTYRE MALAWI 10
780.00 345 16-Sep-10 MW PP CBN SAO PAULO BRAZIL 10
783.00 1800 14-Sep-10 MW VV R. DAMASK DAMASCUS SYRIA 300 CLASSICAL MUSIC
810.00 1647 13-Sep-10 MW EE 6RN PERTH AUSTRALIA 20 KIWA BEST
819.00 1743 15-Sep-10 MW VV AIR NEW DELHI INDIA 200 MUSIC
870.00 2302 16-Sep-10 mw ss R NACIONAL BUENOS AIRES ARGENTINA 100
882.00 1653 15-Sep-10 MW EE 6PR PERTH AUSTRALIA 10 TLK ALLERGIES
891.00 1639 13-Sep-10 MW EE 5AN ADELAIDE AUSTRALIA 50 STRONG
918.00 1642 15-Sep-10 MW EE 6NA NARROGIN AUSTRALIA 2
954.00 1555 16-Sep-10 MW EE DZEM CHRISTIAN ERA QUEZON PHILLIPINES 40
1 089.00 358 17-Sep-10 MW EE TALK SPORT PRESUMED ENGLAND UK 400 WEAK
1 098.00 1738 14-Sep-10 MW EE 6MD MERREDIN AUSTRALIA 2 COMMERCIAL ADS
1 116.00 1646 14-Sep-10 MW EE 6MM MANDURAH AUSTRALIA 2
1 143.00 1749 13-Sep-10 MW EE 4HI EMERALD AUSTRALIA 5
1 152.00 1811 13-Sep-10 MW EE BBC WS NX BUSSELTON AUSTRALIA 10 ABC
1 161.00 1546 16-Sep-10 MW EE 5PA ABC NARACOORTE AUSTRALIA 10
1 296.00 1610 14-Sep-10 MW EE 6RN ABC WAGIN AUSTRALIA 10
1 341.00 406 17-Sep-10 MW EE R ULSTER IRISH NX LISNAGARVEY IRELAND 100
1 377.00 409 16-Sep-10 MW FF FRANCE INFO LILLE FRANCE 300
1 395.00 1634 16-Sep-10 MW EE 5AA NX ADELAIDE AUSTRALIA 5
1 395.00 339 17-Sep-10 MW EE BIG L TINTELHAVEN NETHERLANDS 10
1 431.00 1649 15-Sep-10 MW EE VISION R. KALGOOLIE AUSTRALIA 2 MUSIC+ID
1 458.00 1606 14-Sep-10 MW FF RFO PAMANDZI MAYOTTE 5
1 548.00 1643 16-Sep-10 MW EE 4OD ABC EMERALD AUSTRALIA 50 UNDER R ISLAM
1 566.00 2223 14-Sep-10 MW VV AIR NAGPUR INDIA 1000
1 575.00 1616 16-Sep-10 MW EE BBC AFRICA SVCE BIGARA MAURITIUS 2
1 577.00 412 16-Sep-10 MW FF FRANCE INFO NICE FRANCE 300
1 610.00 2218 14-Sep-10 MW EE CARIBBEAN BEACON ANGUILA 30 GOSPEL
1 700.00 430 17-Sep-10 MW EE KVNS BROWNSVILLE TX USA 1 MUSIC WTH STN ID
1 700.00 440 17-Sep-10 MW EE XEPE SAN DIEGO 1700 TECATE MEXICO 10 ID XX 1090 COACH JOHN KENTERA SPORTS TALK

Logs from Vince Stevens

801 16h25 13.Sept AUSTRALIA 5RM Berri pops & ID (personal first) poor-fair
837 16h41 13.Sept AUSTRALIA 2x UNIDENTIFIED ABC local //828 2 stn´s slightly out of sync
850 04h29 17.Sept USA WTAR Norfolk VA ID poor
855 16h40 13.Sept AUSTRALIA UNIDENTIFIED ABC local //828 poor but clear with no QRN (4QO or 4QB)
864 16h15 14.Sept AUSTRALIA 6AM R.West Northam pops + ads + ID´s good
864 16h18 14.Sept UNIDENTIFIED under 6AM w oldies (4GR?) v.poor
891 16h40 13.Sept AUSTRALIA 5AN Adelaide //828 w ABC ads good
900 16h56 13.Sept AUSTRALIA 6BY R.West Bridgetown ID, pops and Busselton ads later fair
900 16h45 13.Sept AUSTRALIA UNIDENTIFIED not // to R.West, ABC or RN synchros. Talk about arrests in NSW and discussion on alcohol abuse and anti-social behaviour. fair briefly then 6BY dominated the channel again.
936 16h09 15.Sept AUSTRALIA 6FX Fitzroy Crossing Continuous mx, many AC/DC tracks. Email to station, confirmed log. poor
954 15h48 14.Sept PHILIPPINES DZEM Bulacan Presumed w relig px in EE. Confirmed the following evening with ID at 15h50 fair-good
954 15h54 16.Sept AUSTRALIA 2UE Sydney Ads, Nx, Sydney Wx, ID, timecheck for 13 past 2 (at 16h13) (personal first) poor
981 15h52 14.Sept AUSTRALIA 6KG Kalgoorlie R.West //747 w talk about smoking
1044 16h51 13.Sept AUSTRALIA ABC UNIDENTIFIED (6BR?) w Buena Vista SC mx //828 poor
1044 16h40 13.Sept AUSTRALIA 5CS/5AU Port Pirie w 5CS ID, though PAL lists this still as 5AU poor
1044 16h38 14.Sept INDIA AIR Mumbai Talk about Commonwealth Games in EE fair-good
1062 18h06 13.Sept AUSTRALIA 2x ABC UNIDENTIFIED (4TI?) one with T20 cricket news poor
1089 03h55 17.Sept UK Talksport Moorside Edge football nx & wx in EE. poor w QRM from 1090
1140 05h00 16.Sept USA WRVA Richmond VA ID & ads poor
1143 17h45 13.Sept AUSTRALIA 4HI Emerald w Creedence song & ad for Ray White properties with an Emerald address. Also promo for Hot Country 1611 & slogan: "we rock right across Emerald & the Central Highlands" - ID as 'Zinc HI' (personal first) fair
1206 04h04 16.Sept FRANCE France Info Bourdeaux in FF, //1557 w nx(?) fair
1242 03h55 16.Sept FRANCE France Info Marseille in FF, //1557 fair-good
1269 17h57 16.Sept AUSTRALIA 6RN Busselton R.National ID at 18h00 fair
1278 03h45 16.Sept FRANCE France Bleu Selestat in FF, //1494 (not //1557) fair
1341 04h05 17.Sept N.IRELAND BBC R.Ulster (presumed) Lisnagarvey w BBC relay (suspect R.4 or BBC WS) - talk on drugs & alcohol weak but clear
1431 17h06 15.Sept AUSTRALIA Vision R.N. Kalgoorlie Vision R Network (//1611) w Gospel mx poor-fair
1440 17h45 14.Sept LUXEMBOURG RTL Marnach in GG w talks fair
1494 03h40 16.Sept FRANCE France Info/France Bleu Various txers Talks in FF //1557, also noted later with different programming poor-fair
1494 16H14 16.Sept AUSTRALIA 2AY (presumed) Albury Only Aussie on this freq, with talk on alcohol abuse in Aussie, phone-ins from Brisbane & QLD (personal first) poor
1530 04h40 17.Sept USA WCKY Cincinnati ID'ing as ESPN 1530, many Cincinnati ads, sport talk. Obliterated at 04h57 by VOA Sao Tome sign on fair
1548 16h40 16.Sept AUSTRALIA 4QD Emerald w talks, under local R.Islam v.poor
1548 04h14 17.Sept UK Capital Gold Saffron Green John Lennon song & ID good
1611 16h40 15.Sept AUSTRALIA 6MX Albany Ad for Mitsubishi w Albany address, pops & station slogans: "there's only one station in Albany that plays this much non-stop music" [400W] (personal first) poor - mixing with Vision R
1611 16h46 15.Sept AUSTRALIA Vision FM Margaret River Vision R Network ID (//1431 - contradicting PAL) [400W] (personal first) poor
1629 18h59 13.Sept AUSTRALIA 3ABN Busselton ID as "Three Angels BC Network" & relig px for children (personal first) poor-fair (400W)
1650 04h00 14.Sept UNIDENTIFIED in FF (CJRS?) poor
1660 04h00 14.Sept USA WWRU Jersey City ID in EE good
1670 04h22 15.Sept USA WTDY Madison WI Many ID's, phone-in px (personal first) poor-fair

USA UNID's noted on 680, 850, 1000, 1010, 1040, 1050, 1090, 1120, 1130, 1160, 1180, 1520, 1560x2, 1690, 1700

Regular Aussies not specifically logged - 720, 747, 810, 828, 882, 918, 990, 1008, 1071, 1080, 1116, 1206, 1224, 1296, 1404

(published on September 29, 2010)

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