G4ALG's QRP Radio Pages

[ Previously GW4ALG (QRT in February 2007) ]

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A picture of the author

My name is Steve Rawlings, holder of the amateur radio callsign 'G4ALG'.  

Through these pages, you can find out about my current low power ('QRP') amateur radio activities. 

Previously, I operated as GW4ALG and details of those operations, including the equipment used, are still available by clicking here.

Low Power Operation
Making radio contacts using simple morse transmitters and receivers is becoming increasingly challenging, but can be very rewarding. 

Most low power (QRP) operators use conventional morse code, frequently within the range 14 to 20 words per minute.  So you don't have to be a morse 'expert' to have low power morse contacts.

Although the signal 'QRP' has been used for many decades in a relative sense, such as 'shall I reduce my transmitter power', the use of 'QRP' is now frequently used in an absolute sense.  In recent years, national and international organisations have defined 'QRP' as a transmitter output power of  five watts, or less.

Over the past couple of decades, QRP enthusiasts have had to cope with increasing disruption to their experiments and operations due to aggressive contest operators having no respect for international band plans, or QRP 'centres of activity', or for the people who rely on these internationally agreed designated frequencies.   Through the use of sophisticated contest control programs; links to callsign databases, access to remote receivers throughout the world, and 'spotting' services, contest operating is now a form of computer gaming having no regard for other users of the amateur radio spectrum.  The upshot is that QRP operators often find that their attempts to test experimental equipment, or to keep in contact with old pals, are becoming increasingly difficult.

National radio clubs such as the RSGB, have consistently failed to take action against those who ignore international band plans.  So QRP operators should expect the situation to become increasingly difficult over time.

QRP clubs have been silent on the matter of disruption by contest operators, and have failed to represent the interests of their members at national and international meetings.  Indeed, some QRP clubs actively promote contests through articles about contesting, and by helping to publicise contest events.  Many members of QRP clubs would like to see the QRP organisations take a less passive stance toward abuse of the band plans.  The organisers of contest events have consistently ignored pleas from those seeking fair access to the amateur spectrum.

To read about my current equipment, select the hyperlinks at the top and bottom of these web pages. 

 

My location
I am located near Lydney, Gloucestershire at about 400 feet (122 m) above sea level (ASL).

 

The shack

 

 

Steve Rawlings, G4ALG
2 April 2022