9M2/G4ZFE/P - AS-074 Pulau Ketam - Feb 2003


Picture: Pulau Ketam Jetty

I have already described Pulau Ketam and as is it the nearest IOTA reference to me I booked another visit to the Sea Lion Hotel hosts of previous 9M2OM/P and 9M2/GM4YXI trips to the island. I booked the now infamous "Room 6" for Saturday 22nd February and Sunday 23rd February returning home on the Monday. The total time to get onto the island was only 2 hours - 1 hour taxi from KL to Port Klang and then a 30 minute boat crossing to Pulau Ketam.

However Pulau Ketam is not the most desirable island in Malaysia to spend a weekend on! The photo shows the view out of the operating room - the main pier on the island with one of the Speedboats used to travel between the island and the mainland. Much to my suprise since my last visit - March 2002 - the hotel had expanded and there is now a Sea Lion Suites Hotel behind the original hotel. This had a partially flat roof and didn't have the celluar radio towers on the Sea Lion Hotel roof. I choose Room 206 at the far end of the hotel but Room 201 would have been a better choice as it is directly underneath the flat roof section.

I set up my Force 12 Sigma 5 vertical (see photo) in a drainage hole on the roof which supported the antenna quite well. The antenna had a clear sea take off to the South (sadly not many amateurs live in the Indian Ocean and Antartica) and also to the East (JA - the direction of the houses in the photo). As the hotel is in the south of the island the take off to Europe (North West) is not perfect. BTW, the photo was taken at low tide!

I also set up a 10MHz dipole on a small mast on the flat section of the roof. This did not work well and only a handful of JA stations were worked. From home I worked many W6/W7 and JA on 10 MHz so this was a real disappointment. 10 MHz was my back up in case band conditions were not good.

Picture: Sigma 5 vertical on roof

Band conditions, sadly, were not great and a contest made work on the non-WARC bands difficult. With 100W and a vertical you need to be spotted on the cluster to get any real runs. I spent a _long_ time calling CQ with no answer! In all this was my worst IOTA trip QSO total wise with only 492 QSOs. 12m was lively into JA and I had two good early morning (09:00 local time) runs with excellent signals from JA. I was pleased to work more NA than usual.

Picture: FT100 and Bencher

The photo shows the IOTA station - Yeasu FT100 running 100W to a Force 12 Sigma 5 Vertical. The antenna covers 20m to 10m including WARC bands and is just 9 feet tall. The antenna works well in average conditions but when conditions were poor as they were for this trip more aluminium is needed in the sky.


9M2/G4ZFE/P was QRV from 09:00 22/2/2003 until 02:30 24/2/2003 (14 hours operating).

A total of 492 QSOs were made all on CW:
30m - 25 QSOs and 4 DXCC countries
20m - 18 QSOs and 10 DXCC countries
15m - 250 QSOs and 33 DXCC countries
12m - 196 QSOs and 29 DXCC countries
10m - 3 QSOs and 1 DXCC countries
A total of 49 different DXCC countries were worked.

Breakdown of QSOs:
Asia - 55.5 % QSOs
Europe - 30.3 %
NA - 10 %

22/2/2003 - TBD
23/2/2003 - TBD
24/2/2003 - TBD

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