Moved antenna at VK5RMG

Recently SERG was advised that its 2m repeater antenna at The Bluff would need to be relocated to the adjacent tower as a result of an Axicom requirement. An unused antenna that already existed on the new tower was made available for SERG to use and a test proved the SWR was acceptable for our frequencies. Unfortunately, after our main antenna was removed and the repeater recabled to the alternate tower, the coverage was extremely poor.After several days, an interim strategy was to install a temporary antenna to restore our repeater acceptable coverage, even if not quite a good as before. This has been achieved by the generous support of the rigging team of Dylan and Brodie from Gambier Electronics.Plans are now underway to refurbish our old antenna and reinstall it in the coming weeks when tower space becomes available. 

Club President

The Gambier electronics Tower to the left, Axicom tower to its right
Clearer view of our antenna at it’s temporary low height with Brodie nearby
Brodie connecting the tail to the 550 Heliax

An update from one of our VK3 Members

Our secretary Col, VK5HCF, sent James VK3FJBM an email to see how he was getting on in Horsham with all the Covid19 surrounding us all.

Here is his reply.

“Hi Col,

Thanks for your email! 🙂
Yes, the COVID situation has definitely thrown a spanner in the works this year.I’ve been just treading water with the workload in …………(deleted)………………. as we have transitioned to and from Remote Learning twice now.However, if there is a positive in all this it has been the few extra moments I have gotten to play AR over the past 6 months.
I have invested in a couple of projects.
One has been the purchase a Yaesu 857-D unit, associated Automatic Antenna Tuner and a 10mtr squid pole as a Portable HF setup.Through this setup, I have been able to perform some HF and SSTV contacts.Must say I’m not sure if I will ever enjoy the ‘noise’ of HF compared to 2/70.
The other project has been setting up a Digital Repeater for the Horsham area.I’ve purchased a very nice outdoor cabinet for the project, got power and 4G Internet-connected, programmed up some Repeater Builder boards and a Motorola MTR unit.I’ve worked with City Council and got a contract for me to use an un-used (previously Ambos) tower which has a bunch on antenna’s on it perfect for AR.Through some inspiration from reading VK5DJ’s blog, I have programmed up a temperature sensor on a Raspberry Pi to automatically turn the cabinet’s inbuilt fan kit on/off as required.Hopefully, this will be completed in the next fortnight and I can put together a blog post about it.I have attached a couple of pictures of the cabinet, the repeater is yet to be installed and some cabling to be tidied up yet.
I wish that the restrictions to travel into SA were lifted so I could help out with SERG’s upcoming events, but I’m not sure that is going to happen anytime soon.Even if we have no cases in Regional Vic.
Hope you are also going well and enjoying some sunny days.
Thank You again for the email Col, it made my day!Also thanks to both yourself and other members of SERG for making me feel welcome at events.Without SERG, AR would not be a hobby of mine.
See you soon.
Cheers,James Mutch

Soon to be VK3JBM!😄 “

It was good of James to fill us in on what he has been up to, and by the sound of it, he has been very busy trying to stimulate activity in the Horsham Area. He is hoping to stand for office at the Horsham Club’s upcoming A.G.M. and, if successful, trying to generate some enthusiasm and activity into their Group. We wish him luck and thank him for the very nice email.

Which Capacitor Do I Use?

Many of you like me have wondered which of these capacitors should I use and for what circuit perhaps, what the heck”s a bumble bee capacitor and which ones do I may be throw out of a circuit or don”t use at all you may ask yourself ?

Fortunately we have Paul from Mr Carlson Lab to answer many of your questions in his following video so please welcome and thank Mr Carlson’s Lab Video for today’s presentation.

Hopefully today’s presentation and talk on capacitors by Mr Carlson has now shed some light on which are good capacitors, what capacitors are used for which type of circuits or recommended for what application. Hopefully you are now some what more proficient on capacitor selection and use.

If you have enjoyed this presentation on What Capacitor do i use and would like to see more of Mr Carlson’s presentations on other topics relating to electronics then click to the link to his you-tube website; Mr Carlson’s Lab.

Thanks again to visiting our website and Enjoy the Hobby.

Till Next Time 73”s from VK5NFT

Rally report -August

Over the week-end of August 15/16th, SEAC hosted the 1st Round of the SA Rally Championship in and around the forests near SEAC Park, just west of Mount Gambier. Again, SERG received a request to provide all the communications to enable safe management of the event.

Sunday was a long day, with many arriving at their points at 7am, and not leaving until nearly 5pm. It was a huge dedicated commitment by all from SERG, where a large team was deployed to man every start & finish stage control, plus an intermediate point of each stage. Our members were able to quickly report the whereabouts of all cars, plus report back to the scoring team at Race Control all of the competitors Stage start & finish times to enable rapid compilation of results. Some points were even delegated the task of reporting any car making contact with a barrier which was then applied as a penalty to the drivers score.

All messages were relayed over our 2m repeater nearby on The Bluff which provided excellent radio coverage over the entire area of the event.  Radio traffic was constant & relentless, yet our repeater performed faultlessly.

I would like to thank the following SERG members for an outstanding job.

  • Tom VK5EE
  • Colin VK5DK
  • Tim VK5AV
  • Norbert VK5MQ
  • Owen VK5HOS
  • Greg VK5ZGY & Gabi
  • Hans VK5PHS
  • Phil VK5PCL
  • Phil VK5BVC
  • Andrew VK5VKC
  • Deanna VK5FDCS

Your contribution made my sometimes difficult job in Race Control so much easier.

Peter VK5BE

Rally Coordinator

Phil VK5BVC knows how to make a long day comfortable
Who needs a road

New power supply tray

On Sunday 10/8/20 Peter VK5BE installed the new power supply tray for VK5RMG. As always, a really professional looking job. The VK5RMG/VK5ROH gear is something for our club to feel really proud about.

The setup at The Bluff. Left cabinet from bottom. Cavities for 2M, PRF1520 2M repeater, Main controller and VK5RNC link, Sub controller and links to Mt Benson and Mt Eckersley, three uhf cavities for links
Right cabinet from bottom. 2M system backup battery, UHF filter in RX, PRF1520 UHF repeater, power supply for two metres, battery charger controller for UHF and power supply UHF, DC switching panel
Close up of new power supply panel/tray and VK5ROH

Club Awards 2020


Roy Goodwin Award

This is awarded annually to a Foundation Licence holder who has made a significant contribution to SERG, and this year it goes to Kate, VK5FKLY, for her outstanding work in recent years for the video switching at the Lakes Hillclimb.

Kate works quietly behind the scenes, rarely seen or heard, but does such an awesome job presenting the camera pictures on the TV screens that we all take for granted.

Congratulations Kate

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President’s Shield

This is awarded annually by the SERG President to anyone that has made a significant contribution to SERG. This year, in recognition of the great work behind the scenes throughout the year, the award goes to our Welfare Officer, David VK5HDW.

Each month, David has made countless phone calls to our members ensuring they are not forgotten when they are unable to attend meetings or if feeling less than 100%. His very detailed monthly reports are always well received and most appreciated.

Congratulations, David, on being awarded the President’s Shield for 2020.

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SERG helps out at Border Crossing


Today, July 24th, SERG received a request from our state’s emergency services for logistical support.  The request was to assist with improving the phone and data service at the Princes Highway road block at GLENBURNIE, on the SA/Vic border.  A recent announcement that SA residents may soon be refused entry back into SA, phone and data is a valuable asset to emergency services at the site. The location, unfortunately, has unreliable or little phone and data service due to being nestled amongst a pine forest.  SERG has an emergency communications trailer, which is fitted with a large pump up mast.

SERG members, Andrew VK5MAS, Tim VK5AV, and Peter VK5BE quickly mobilised the SERG Comms trailer to the road block location.  They set up a portable phone cell utilising a temporary antenna attached to the top of the trailer mounted pump up mast. It is all powered from the battery & mains charger in the trailer and provides a no-break cell for all the workers on site at the road block.

The emergency service workers at the road block were extremely thankful for the logistical support from SERG, as they can now do their border task more effectively.

Princes’ Highway border crossing with comms trailer in background
The trailer in action
The SERG Team: President Peter (VK5BE), Andrew (VK5MAS), Tim (VK5AV)

WIA President’s Commendation

Congratulations to Tony VK5ZAI on receiving the President’s Commendation Award at this year’s WIA AGM.

It was for his excellent contribution to Amateur Radio through his involvement in the ARISS Program. The members of SERG are proud to have Tony as one of our members and join with the President of the WIA in congratulating Tony.

Fox Hunt Grant presented by local MP Tony Pasin

The South East Radio Group recently received a grant of $2,754 from the Federal Government’s Stronger Communities Program. The grant enabled the purchase of equipment which will ensure rapid and accurate scoring of the Australian Radio Fox Hunting Championships held annually in Mount Gambier. This money was used to purchase latest High Tec. Equipment to assist and save countless man hours working out competitor times for the event of the Fox Hunting. The items were well received by SERG President Peter Becker and presented by our local Member Mr Tony Pasin. We would like to thank you Mr Pasin and the Federal Government’s Stronger Communities Program for making this happen.

Peter Becker (left ) receiving equipment purchased with MP Tony Pasin (right)


Video Courtesy of AREG VK5ARG

SERG 50th Convention and Fox Hunt June 2015 in Mount Gambier

Video Courtesy of Monica Lo Presti

We would also like to thank Andrew McKinnis VK5KET for all of his hard work leading up and also for over the two days involved with officiating the Fox Hunt Events with also SERG members to assist as the Fox’s as well as all the competitors (Hounds) that come from all over Australia to participate in this event.

Andrew McKinnis VK5KET

The South East Amateur Radio Group SERG holds the National Fox Hunting Championships in June, the Queens Birthday long weekend where we also hold our convention at the same time. The fox hunt is open to all ages old and young, male and female. If you like to try out then come along and see if you can find the fox.

Thanks again to visiting our website and Enjoy the Hobby.

Till Next Time 73”s from VK5NFT