I am a keen portable operator, but sadly don’t get out as much as I would like. Things are usually complicated by the fact that it is sometimes tricky to find a place to set up!
This pic (above) was taken at Aylmers Farm at one of the regular activations from this Amateur Radio friendly site. This particular activation featured my NATO tactical antenna on a Racal 12m pneumatic mast.
The Pic at the right was taken at the Rainbow and Dove this summer, where I tried out my newly acquired Jaybeam Tri-Bander. It took a few attempts to get it together the right way round and even then when it was up on the mast, it was difficult to judge it’s performance a the conditions were so poor.
It will definitely need a bit of tweaking before taking it out next time. The mast is designed for 2 man deployment, which they say can take about 10 minutes. On my own it can take up to an hour to put it up safely. It was certainly worth every penny spent on it, but it does weigh a bit, but not as nearly as heavy as a Clark SCAM mast.
The Jaybeam is a hansom sight when hoisted on the mast,Chris Smart has fabricated a spigot and adaptor (which I will try out this summer) to mount a rotator on, so now I just have to buy one! During the test deployment, I just used a piece of water pipe packed out with some scrap wood to mount it on the mast and turned it round with thin nylon rope!