Field Day 2017

This year Adam Kriz, VA7 KRZ was the Field Day coordinator for the annual Field Day event. Setup of the antennas and base camp took place on Friday, June 23rd and the contest started at 11AM on Saturday, June 24th, ending on Sunday, June 25th at 11 AM.

Adam’s Field Day 2017 reportWhat is field day you may ask?

Field day is an annual Amateur radio event that demonstrates ham radio science, emergency preparedness, and our communication capabilities. More than 40,000 hams throughout North America set up temporary transmitting stations in public places, EOCs (emergency operation centers), or their homes.

The event took place at the old rock quarry up on Cypress mountain sitting at 622.19 m / 2041.31 feet above sea level.

The contest aspect of Field Day is to contact as many stations as possible in the given time period (24hrs). Each station will exchange information with other participating stations.

The exchange consists of the station Call sign, a class designator which indicates the number of transmitters and information about the type of electrical power source being used, and the abbreviation of the section from which the station is operating.

Joe (VE7JYH), Keith (VE7KW) and I arrived at the Fire training center (FTC) at around noon on Friday where we had to do some pruning to get into our storage container. Big thanks to Joe for bringing his pruning shears!
Ian Smith (VA7IAN) and Sally (VA7SMF) showed up at the FTC shortly after with the Uhaul where we then sorted through and loaded all the equipment and materials that had been removed from the MCP (Mobile Command Post).
Upon arrival to Cypress, we found out that the locks on the main gate we usually use had been changed by West Van district and the Cypress Operations did not have a key. This was a problem for the solar trailer as the other entrance did not have the right approach angle to get the trailer in. Instead, we parked the trailer in the parking stalls closest to the field.

Keith (VE7KW) coordinated the setup of the antennas with a TA33 junior on the tower, operating on 10M, 15M and 20M, a 40M dipole strung from the tower to the solar trailer and an 80M dipole strung from the tower to the outlying trees. Thanks to Mark Spencer (VE7AFZ) for providing his 6m antenna and his Icom ic-706 for the VHF station.


I brought in my solar trailer (PowerCan) to run to provide power for radios, computers, Kureg coffee maker, perimeter lighting and Uhaul lights. We manage to run the entire event off of collected and stored solar energy without the use of the generator at all.

PowerCan Specs:

Battery – 19.95kwhfor the bank of 48V Lithium batteries.

Photovoltaics (Solar) – 8x 260w panels for a total of 2080W

Generator – Diesel generator with a 28kw Yanmar engine, and a 25k Stamford gen end that is field configurable to be for Split phase, or 3phase output.

Inverters – 3x 6.48kw xw+ inverters ( configured for split phase) capable of 19.44Kw output.

On Friday night I made an attempt to make a HSMM 2.4ghz mesh link from the Field Day site to Kitsilano. A link was not made as site in Kitsilano did not have a clear line of sight to our field day site.
Friday night was very busy. There were many curious visitors all through the night and into the early morning. Myself, and Ian Smith (VA7IAN) stayed overnight to watch over the field day site.
Weather on Saturday was perfect. The solar system was able to provide far more power than what we were using. This meant that we did not have to use any generators.

Saturday night myself and Ian (VA7IAN) operated through the night into the early morning. Thanks to Sally (VA7SMF) for bringing the Kureg coffee maker and for bringing a large mosquito net large enough to cover the door of the uhaul!

In the 24hr period, we managed to make contact with 724 stations on various bands and forms of communication such as Morse code, PSK, and plain old Voice.