GB70E: Getting ready to hit the air

In a little over one week’s time, the GB70E will go on air from Windsor Home Park to celebrate 70 years of service of Her Majesty The Queen.

GB70E will be a major undertaking and consist of four stations in total, housed inside a marquee which will be erected in the North-East corner of the Home Park, near the tow path. The station is a joint project by two local radio clubs: Burnham Beeches Radio Club (based around Windsor, Slough and Maidenhead) and Cray Valley Radio Society (based in South-East London).

The team behind the station has been working tirelessly to source organise and test equipment over the last weeks and months, and is finally ready to share more details on the plans for GB70E.

The design of GB70E is based heavily on previous experience at other special event stations, including 2O12L for the London Olympics in 2012, M2000A in 2000 – and of course GB50 for the Golden Jubilee twenty years ago.

Simon 2E0CVN operating the WARC band station at 2O12L (Photo credit: Dave G4BUO)

The GB70E station setup

There will be three stations active on the HF bands. These are by far the most popular amateur radio bands and the station team expects a lot of amateurs will seek to contact GB70E on these bands. Communication with other stations almost anywhere in the world is possible – provided the operator chooses the right frequency for the right time of day and on propagation conditions.

Two of the HF stations can use any two bands out of 80/40/20/15/10 metres. Antenna switching (using a “6-pak”) allows these two stations to switch between different aerials, and ensures both stations cannot use a band at the same time.

Each of these stations will use a Yaesu FT1000MP, and linear amplifiers (SPE Expert 1k-FA and FL2100) will be used to amplify the signal.

The third HF station will cover the ‘WARC’ bands 30/17/12 but will also be used on 6 metres when Sporadic-E propagation makes long distance contacts possible. This station will run on an Icom 7400, amplified by a HF Gemini from Linear Amp UK.

All three stations use auto-switched bandpass filters to minimise mutual interference, which would otherwise be inevitable with multiple stations operating in close proximity to each other.

There will also be a VHF/UHF station mainly for local contacts on 2m and 70cm FM, using a Yaesu FT847. 

All radios will use CAT control, and logging software (DXLog)will be used on all PCs, networked together. Logs will be uploaded to M0OXO’s log search facility daily, and QSLs may be requested using OQRS.


Aerials at GB70E

To operate most effectively and achieve optimum take-off, the aerials need to be as high up in the air. At GB70E, the main mast will be an 80ft Strumech tower supporting a four-element SteppIR directional HF antenna.

The 80ft Strumech tower at GB200T – another special event station at the National Maritime museum in 2005. (Photo credit: Date G4BUO)

On the 6m band, the station will use a 5-element Yagi antenna on a pump-up Scam mast, and 17m/12m will use a two-element quad antenna on another Scam mast.

Finally, a colinear on the 80ft tower will cover 2m/70cm, and an additional wire dipole will be set up for the lower bands.

2 comments

  1. Tks qso very happy to be part of this celebration god save the QEEN PY1AX TONY my respecy all the best running to get aeard 73 to all from BRASIL

  2. Many tnx for qsos with special stn gb70m, gb70e, gq3svk, gq8cw, gq4bwp my best wishes for queen ELIZABET George Kolarov lz2vp

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