Re: Exchange for field day

James Whitehill

Chris, thanks for putting out that Q&A defining "portable" stations."  You are correct, and I was not, regarding operating with portable equipment from a home location, such as a backyard, deck, or driveway.  Richard (AC0MP)and I, and others I suspect, will be operating in the E class (home station using emergency power).  We will not be meeting another definition of the portable class: "operating in abnormal situations" with less than ideal equipment and facilities.

Having put together a portable station recently, I will simply use Field Day as the occasion for a personal test of my portable antennas and other equipment I have assembled for future, post-virus outings to parks, etc.  At my advanced age, I am scrupulously avoiding a public appearance that might  attract the public or even neighbors (which isolation, ironically, weakens the "publicity" purposes of Field Day).

Best of luck at Rockbridge State Park (which has been very crowded the past few days on weekends)..  Be safe.
Jim, n0ssm

On Tue, Jun 23, 2020 at 5:56 AM Hillman, Richard E. <hillmanr@...> wrote:
Thank you Chris and Jim.  I guess I shall be 1 E MO unless I decide to walk to Rockbridge and become 1B Mo, although by Jim’s reading I’ll be 1B Mo at home on the deck. I’ll be using QRP and a portable antenna.   If conditions are really bad I might even turn into a 1 D .

Richard AC0MP

On Jun 22, 2020, at 10:13 PM, Chris Swisher <Komu8ce@...> wrote:

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Q. We don’t have an area club, but we do have a small group of area hams (generally two or three of us get together for operating events). I have a large-deep property, and we will be setting up in my back yard. What Class would we be? Class A, Class B or ? A. Convenient access across one’s backyard to their home station facilities is not in keeping with the spirit of Class A or Class B portable operations. Such convenient backyard operations on property of home stations remain either Class D (commercial power)or Class E (emergency power), even if home antenna structures are not used. If the station will be a ‘good hike’ away from a home station (eg, at the rear of a several acre lot, or perhaps operating from a farmers field down the road) - clearly away from home conveniences (away from home utilities, or home restrooms/bedrooms, or even eating facilities/refrigerator/kitchen) - then Class A (3 or more persons portable) or Class B (1 or 2 person portable) is appropriate.

On Mon, Jun 22, 2020 at 9:59 PM Chris Swisher via <> wrote:
I'll disagree. Home stations are defined as those operating from a licensed location, ie. where someone with an amateur license resides, and whose license lists that location.

4.6. (Class D) Home stations: Stations operating from permanent or licensed station locations using commercial power. Class D stations may only count contacts made with Class A, B, C, E and F Field Day stations. 4.7. (Class E) Home stations - Emergency power: Same as Class D, but using emergency power for transmitters and receivers. Class E may work all Field Day stations.

Ignore the class D restriction on counting other D contacts, that was temporarily changed. There was a FAQ about locating a portable station on the property, and the ARRL stated it was not in keeping with the spirit of the rule unless the location was "a fair hike across the woods" or "in a farmers' field". The front driveway is not what they would define as portable.

On Mon, Jun 22, 2020 at 8:58 PM James Whitehill <jdwhitehill1603@...> wrote:
Chris,  I don't read the rules as you do regarding portable stations, regarding a portable's location being a specific minimum distance from home and facilities.  The specific rule defining a portable station is : 

 "Such stations must be located in places that are not regular station locations and must not use facilities installed for permanent station use, or use any structure installed permanently for Field Day."

I interpret this as meaning a portable station is any distance from the in-home radio shack and not using radio equipment  "installed for permanent station use" (such as radio shack installed stuff, coax in the ground, regular permanent antennas,  etc.)  

I will be operating QRP under battery power in my driveway using a portable antenna and portable transceiver and associated non-permamently installed equipment.  That would be  the 1B-Battery class in my calculation.

Unless you have a ruling from ARRL that talks about a "fair hike distance from the home", as you put it, for a portable location, I think stations using portable battery power, portable antennas, and portable gear, etc., regardless of  distance from a house with a permanent  and separate station, are in fact impermanent and, hence, "portable.  
I do not think the phrase "must not use facilities for permanent station use" includes the bathroom and other non-radio facilities  because they are not installed for the purpose of permanent radio station use.  

I think the rules on portable stations is intended to eliminate from the "portable" category those big gun, permanent contest stations built specifically to house radio  equipment and permanent antenna farms.   The purpose of Field Day, in part, is to encourage portable operations of various kinds (sources of electrical power, transmitter output powers, number of operators, modes and bands, etc.) that could be used in emergency situations (most eminently when there is no access to commercial power).  

Jim, n0ssm

On Mon, Jun 22, 2020 at 6:00 PM Chris Swisher <Komu8ce@...> wrote:
Home operations are D if using commercial power, and E if using emergency power. A portable station would not be operating at a licensed location (home) but somewhere a fair hike from home and the amenities  that are present, and would be class B.

On Mon, Jun 22, 2020 at 4:06 PM Hillman, Richard E. <hillmanr@...> wrote:
If operating as a home (commercial power) or portable station On battery,  field day what is the proper exchange???

Richard AC0MP

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