Should contest rules allow and act upon 599K QRM reports?

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Friedrichshafen 2008

Just back from Friedrichshafen Hamfest 2008 and have to say that the prices for 2nd hand gear were ridiculous eg. FT290 in poor condition, 250 Euro (£200 ????). Previously I had thought that we Brits were hard done by in terms of the cost of amateur gear, but now I know we aren't the worst.

Out of the 3 days at the show I only bought a bit of wire (10 Euro) and a mains filter (10 Euro). I held off buying, thinking that the prices must drop by the Sunday, but unfortunately it was not to be. Everything you could want was for sale, I just couldn't find anything to buy that was a reasonable price let alone a bargain.

As the show went on, another amateur and I started trying to out do one another with examples of ludicrous prices such as 25 Euro for a broken tape recorder and 200 Euro for a Cobra 148GTLDX (it looked like it had been recovered from a skip).

On the plus side I saw a K3 in the flesh for the first time, but unfortunately it was in a glass case and not connected to an antenna. It was turned on though and the display was very stricking and well laid out. TenTec were represented and I got the chance to play with the TenTec Orion II and the OMNI VII. I can normally walk straight up to any make of transceiver and start sussing out how drive it within a minute or so. Not so with these puppies! I found it very difficult to know what was happening and even after 10 mins of twiddling I was still none the wiser. I did however find several things I didn't like during that time such as wobbly, cheap feeling controls, awful display and lag between front panel control adjustments and the associated control display icon.
The friedrichshafen hamfest is really about meeting other hams and browsing through the present product offerings from all the main manufacturers. Most are on show and can be connected up to give you a fair idea if the product is for you or not.

Friedrichshafen and the surrounding area is a beautiful location for a holiday with the possibility of visiting 2 other very different countries only a short train/ferry trip away. We may go back for another holiday but not to coincide with the hamfest.

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