VP6T – Pitcairn Island 2012

    February 1, 2012: Vincent F4BKV informs the group went final QRT at 16:40UTC today. Antennas were being dismantled soon afterwards. He looks forward to hopefully making more QSOs as TX6T/p from Mangareva (OC-063) by the end of the coming weekend, weather dependent.

    January 31, 2012: After 11.5 days continuous operation, the VP6T Pitcairn DXpedition will now go QRT at around 17z on Wednesday 1st February. This is one day earlier than previously expected. Our skipper has advised that it would be better to set sail from Pitcairn earlier in order to avoid the deteriorating weather expected on the three-day sail back to Mangareva (FO). There will be no 160m during the final night of operation.

    January 27, 2012: Nigel G3TXF on Pitcairn informs:

    We are now about half way through the VP6T Pitcairn operation. The exact close-down time will depend on the weather forecast for the three-day sail from Pitcairn back to Mangareva in French Polynesia. But at a guess, we’ll probably be starting to pack up in the morning (local time, i.e around 1700z) on Thursday Feb 2.

    The 34,800 VP6T QSOs made so far have all been uploaded regularly to both ClubLog and LoTW. It’s interesting to see that the “QSL” percentage on LoTW is well over 25% within a few hours of each up-load. The LoTW up-load process itself has speeded up massively of late. It now only takes a minute or so for our daily batch of 5,000 QSOs to up-load.

    Jacques F6BEE, Michel FM5CD, Vincent F4BKV and Gilles VE2TZT are all making huge efforts on both 80m and 160m. However, sadly (apart from the first night) Top Band has been very frustrating with only a handful of European QSOs. But they will keep trying every night!

    Meanwhile, we have located the old 5-el 50 MHz beam left behind on Pitcairn by Jukka OH2BR (VP6BR) and we will be trying to make a few contacts on Six if time and conditions allow. Please do not bombard us with E-mail requests for 6m skeds — our main focus remains in maximising the number Pitcairn QSOs we can hand out on the nine HF Bands!

    January 23, 2012: Monday is a national holiday on Pitcairn. It’s called Bounty Day. The five VP6T Ops will be taking part in the celebrations on Monday evening local-time [and hence expect to be QRT from about 01z to 05z on Tuesday 24]. Logs with 14,000 QSOs have been loaded to both ClubLog and LoTW. 73 – The VP6T Team.

    January 22, 2012: Nigel G3TXF reports the team received a visit from Betty Christian VP6YL (VR6YL) the XYL of Tom VP6TC (VR6TC).

    Uploads to LoTW and Clublog will continue whenever time and internet coverage permit. Over 4000 QSOs were made during the first day of activity. VP6T is now active 160-10m.

    Now QRV:
    [audio:http://dx-world.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/VP6T30m.mp3|titles=VP6T 30m CW – tnx KH6CG]
    [audio:http://dx-world.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/vp6t-20cw-201201210422Z.mp3|titles=vp6t-20cw-tnx N6ML]

    January 20, 2012 – Team have arrived Pitcairn. They will spend the rest of today preparing antennas and hope to be QRV by Friday evening (Pitcairn local time). They say the location is great!

    January 11, 2012 – Since we received many requests asking for 6m operation, EME, SSTV, 60m, etc we would like to clarify the following:

    We are a small team of 5 operators, and are very limited in baggage weight and size, mainly on the Air Tahiti domestic flight. So we had to make choices. While most of us are 6m operators, we decided not to spend much of our precious time and effort on this band. No antenna will be taken for 6m, as well as no time slot booked in our operation schedule (it will already be very hard to keep 3 HF stations running 24/7 with 5 operators).

    On the other side, we are aware there is potentially an old 5ele Yagi 6m antenna (probably left by OH2BR). If time permits, we will try to locate it and if it is still in good shape after 12 years spent on the island, then we may install it and make some tests on 6m, using conventional modes (CW and/or SSB). In that case, it will be announced on the VP6T web site, or on air by the HF operators.

    So to summarize, 6m operation from Pitcairn has not been on our agenda since the early planning stage, as well as all others bands/modes that are not specified on the web site. Thank you for your understanding.

    December 12, 2011 – Exactly one month from now, the VP6T team will start its journey to French Polynesia, with the first stop in Tahiti for 3 days before taking a small airplane to Mangareva Island, the closest airstrip to Pitcairn. From there, we will sail for approx. three days and expect to start transmitting on around January 20th (weather dependent).

    Despite recent issues with boat transportation, we now secured this last critical leg of the trip, and the good news is that we will extend our stay on the island for one extra week. Therefore, instead of the initially planned 20-29 January operation, we will be on air until February 4th, giving one more week the opportunity to contact us.

    We remind you that the entire trip and stay on the island is paid in full by each of the five operators and that any contribution/support will help us to offset the high logistical costs: due to airline restrictions we had to ship all masts, antennas and heavy items in advance by plane and ship from France to Mangareva. We would like to thank all individuals and especially the Foundations and Clubs as well as equipment suppliers that already support us.

    Additionally, we plan to be active from Tahiti and if time permits from Mangareva (Gambier islands – IOTA OC-063) with callsign TX6T.

    QSL for both VP6T and TX6T via Nigel G3TXF.

    More info is available on the VP6T website.