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Thread: What is portable?

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    Membership #: 6 Full Member Award Curator G8TDU's Avatar
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    What is portable?

    Can someone tell me what the exact definition of 'Portable' actually is? One school of thinking says its a small piece of equipment carried like a hand held, and at the opposite end of the scale, half the shack in a wheel barrow with a portable generator..!

    I have a piece of kit that weighs almost 35Kgs and the power source is a car battery, i can just about lift it, so would this count as 'portable'

    John
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    Re: What is portable?

    Portable is classed as a station operating away from home and without mains power, wether it's on hf, vhf or pmr 446.
    Part of my portable set up is my transit van, yaesu 857 and a 100w solar powered generator. I also use an 817with a 7ah battery and 10w solar panel for activating trigs etc.

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    Re: What is portable?

    I've added a new definition to the rules which (I hope!) makes it easier to define a Portable Station for the purposes of the award scheme...

    1. Portable Location - A location that is not a registered address.
    2. Standard Exchange - A minimum of call sign, locator and signal report in RS(T) format must be passed by both stations.
    3. At Sea - A vessel located in tidal waters at least 1 Mile away from land.
    4. Portable Station - A station that can not move without modification, has a self contained power source and is located at a Portable Location.
    So, for the purposes of claiming awards:

    • Operating from a station in a car with a mag mount antenna = /M (you can drive away whilst still operating)
    • Operating from a car with a 30' mast attached = /P (you can't move without changing something)
    • Operating from your back garden = None (use no prefix)
    • Operating from a holiday let back garden = /A (you are at a registered address)
    • Operating from a cruise liner at sea = /MM (and you can claim /P as long as you are not using ships power)
    • Operating using a hand held with a built in antenna = /M (you can move whilst still operating)
    • Operating using a hand held with a antenna tied to a tree = /P (you will have to modify the antenna to move)

    Does anyone have any other suggestions/improvements/criticisms?
    Matt - M0LMK


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    Re: What is portable?

    Call me pedantic, but there are a couple i would disagree with as they are. Operating from a cruise liner and claiming /P You are within the confines of the vessel or vehicle in this case so it should be /MM and never/P Just imagine the head scratching for someone receiving a /P QSO in the middle of the Indian Ocean. You could argue the same logic, when aboard a bus and walking around the bus, you arent /P but /M

    Definition of Portable Station 'has a self contained power source' Ive operated a few sets which have had external batteries on a belt like arrangement worn around the waist and not internal. Would it not be better to say 'or connected to and moved with external power source as well as/or internal power source' ?
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    Re: What is portable?

    Quote Originally Posted by G8TDU View Post
    Call me pedantic, but there are a couple i would disagree with as they are. Operating from a cruise liner and claiming /P You are within the confines of the vessel or vehicle in this case so it should be /MM and never/P Just imagine the head scratching for someone receiving a /P QSO in the middle of the Indian Ocean. You could argue the same logic, when aboard a bus and walking around the bus, you arent /P but /M
    Yes, I think you are right and would say that on something the size of a cruise liner you should be signing /MM. You could still be classed as a /P station but would that count towards the awards if you were using a handheld on a boat?

    Quote Originally Posted by G8TDU View Post
    Definition of Portable Station 'has a self contained power source' Ive operated a few sets which have had external batteries on a belt like arrangement worn around the waist and not internal. Would it not be better to say 'or connected to and moved with external power source as well as/or internal power source' ?
    By "has a self contained power source" I guess I mean that it should be operating for a power source that is independent of the grid or mains provider. Power from a car battery or small generator yes. Power from a building site generator, no maybe? I think maybe a better breakdown of that is needed.
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    Re: What is portable?

    OK so lets throw the catfish among the penguins

    At Sea - A vessel located in tidal waters at least 1 Mile away from land.
    But in section 2 of the licence it says

    “Vessel at Sea” means a Vessel operating on the seaward side of the low-water
    line along the coastline as marked on large scale charts officially recognised by the
    relevant coastal state;
    Is there any reason for it being 1 mile

    By "has a self contained power source" I guess I mean that it should be operating for a power source that is independent of the grid or mains provider. Power from a car battery or small generator yes. Power from a building site generator, no maybe? I think maybe a better breakdown of that is needed.
    I don't think it should matter what size the generator is as long as it can be moved. I was looking at one the other day that would be ideal for field day, it was a lighting set. Remove the flood lights and put an antenna on top, wind it up and away you go.

    Another idea could be solar power and a small battery (limited size). I know it could be done with just solar but that would limit the power too much.
    À la perchoine

    Jes

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    Re: What is portable?

    All good points mu0chn.

    With regards to the definition of "At Sea", the definitions here are for the purposes of the award and don't have to be in line with licence requirements (so long as the individuals licence conditions are met). I'm trying to make the rules simple and applicable to everyone, worldwide. If we went with the UK licence conditions wording then it may exclude other countries from participating and I think saying
    at least 1 Mile away from land
    is clearer and simpler than saying
    operating on the seaward side of the low-waterline along the coastline as marked on large scale charts officially recognised by the
    relevant coastal state
    Happy to hear opinions about either.

    I'm 100% with you on the power source. I was thinking about the large shipping container sized generators when I wrote that but yes, a generator like the one you mentioned would be fine. Any suggestions on how to improve the wording?
    Last edited by M0LMK; 20th Apr 2015 at 17:41.
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    Re: What is portable?

    Can i suggest, in keeping with the term 'portable' that the generator is the same, ie something that can be picked up by one person and moved, or possibly a generator that could be moved by one person on wheels.

    With the 'at sea' and aboard a boat, i still feel that operating on board a boat or ship should come under maritime mobile. Simplifying the rules down to 'at least one mile away from land' also has problems. The east coast where i grew up had a beach which at low tide was almost 2 miles from the sea to land, when the tide came it it advanced rapidly to the land. I think at least one mile from land AT LOW TIDE would be a safer bet.
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    Re: What is portable?

    Thanks John That all makes perfect sense to me.
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    Re: What is portable?

    I would also take issue with operating from my back garden.. If I sit at my picknic table using my KX1 and a wire in the tree, exactly as I would if I were out in the forest, then I sign /P and I believe that I am.

    David

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