Well, that’s another mission in the books. So many good things and so many bad things. But that seems to be what makes these missions so interesting. Kind of “…never know what you’re going to get.” theme. I do want to remind everyone that if you made a contact please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can be sure to get you your one-of-kind QSL card.
Our next mission is scheduled for August 20. So much to do, so little time to make improvements. One last minute change was the use of Zoom for our streaming video. Our viewer count went way up from previous missions. We’ll probably stick with that for now. I need to work on some video cabling issues….again, and figure out why I couldn’t hear anyone on my HF jump. I plan to make some practice jumps before the next mission. When I do I’ll post that here and on Facebook.
73 for now,
Parachute Mobile Coordinator.
10:50 am – We are about to manifest for our first jump for Mark AF6IM for a VHF jump. Tentative jump time will be ~40 min.
11:31 AM – Mark AF6IM is out of the plane and under canopy. YAY! 147.570.
11:42 AM – Mark AF6IM is safely on the ground. Once Rob returns we’ll get a sense of when the next jump is.
1:15 pm – Rob KC6TYD is manifested for the next load in 15 min. He should be under canopy in about 25 min. for HF on 14.289.
1:34 pm – Rob is on board and on his way up. This is an HF jump: 14.289. He should be in the air in about 10 min.
2:03 pm – Rob KC6TYD is safely on the ground. YAY!
2:11 pm – Mark AF6IM will be suiting up for another VHF jump.
2:51 pm – Mark AF6IM is suited up and manifested. Plane should be departing in ~20 min. and he should be out and under canopy in another 10 or so.
3:29 pm – Mark AF6IM is in the air. He should be under canopy in around 10 min. VHF: 147.570
3:52 pm – Mark AF6IM is safely on the ground.
4:17 pm – Rob KC6TYD is manifesting for the next run. There is no departure time yet. Will keep you posted. Will be a VHF jump: 147.570.
4:28 pm – 19 min. to departure
4:37 pm – Here is the Zoom URL: https://coupa.zoom.us/j/94920887517
4:51 pm – Rob KC6TYD is aboard and the plane has departed.
5:27 pm – Rob KC6TYD is safely back on the ground after having to cutaway his main chute. We are thankful for reserves!
5:54 pm – Thanks to some very good directions, I was able to drive out to the end of the road, hop a gate, walk a hundred yards or so, and retrieve Rob’s chute. YAY! Got my steps in for today. Thank you all for joining us today. That’s a wrap! 73! ~Steve K6WW
The weather for Mission Day is looking great!
There are some changes to take note of:
- There will only be two Jumper’s (skydivers) for this mission. Mark, AF6IM, and Rob, KC6TYD. Michael, KF6WRW, was not able to make it.
- Please note that the over the last couple of missions we have been using new frequencies for both FM and HF contacts. Our 2 meter jumps will be on 147.570 simplex, and the HF jump will be on 14.289. Yes, that is an odd frequency. Trying to avoid frequencies that end in a zero or a 5. Hopefully there wont be anyone camped out there. Carlos, KD9OLN, Parachute Mobile, Illinois, is going to round up some big guns to hold the frequency.
- The live streaming video service we’ve used four years seems to be having some issues and it doesn’t appear that we’ll be able to resolve it in time for the mission. So, we going to “Share” the video downlink in Zoom. I think most of the world is now familiar with that. Her is the link: https://www.google.com/url?q=https://coupa.zoom.us/j/94920887517&sa=D&source=calendar&usd=2&usg=AOvVaw3peAuaGniGv5VElrXnWbWr, and should be live starting at 10a.m. pacific time.
- To find the jumpers on APRS simply search for Mark’s and Rob’s callsigns with NO SSID number at http://aprs.fi.
- Even though we have onboard recoding, we still get a few missed calls. If you make a QSO, or even a broken one, please send us an email to email@example.com and tell us the time of the contact and which jumper it was, this way we’ll be sure to send you a QSL Card.
- We will be shorthanded for this mission which means our social media updates might be delayed. Sorry. Parachute Control will be up on Mount Diablo on 145.570 simplex starting around 9a.m. to provide you with updates and answer questions throughout the day.
- We hope to get our first jumper in the air sometime around 10:30a.m. pacific time.
That’s it for now. More updates later so check back.
Can you believe it? We’ll be kicking off our 13th year of Parachute Mobile on June 18 during Mission 41. I Just want say thank you to all those that have followed along and have made QSOs with us while descending from the sky’s above Byron, California. And of course, it’s been such a privilege to have such an illustrious Ground Crew prepping us up, completing our safety checks, and handling many other tasks.
Last year, Michael Wright, K6MFW, our video streaming guru, made some upgrades to his video setup. Mostly home brew, but certainly more streamline. We had to relocate our setup location at the Drop Zone, (DZ). Up until last year we used half of a open patio area for our operation. Actually, a few years ago walls were installed so it was nice being shaded from the afternoon sun and the Byron winds. Unfortunately, we were spoiled. Due to further upgrades and renovations we’ve had to move to another section of the DZ that is a bit more cramped.
Some of you may have already heard of Carlos Felix, KD9OLN. He’s a skydiver that jumps out of Chicagoland Skydiving Center in Rochelle, IL. He’s posted several YouTube videos that captures the excitement and adventures of his 2 meter and HF jumps. I recently emailed Carlos to let him know that we had a mission coming and pondered the thought of attempting to make a parachute-to-parachute QSO. It didn’t take hi, but a second to say he’s in. This would be quite an achievement. We are both under the control of the schedule and really can’t modify it much. Busines is busines at the DZs so trying to get the timing just right might be tricky. Plus, Calos is 2 hours behind me and 1,743 miles away. Can we do it? We’ll see. This Saturday, 5-28-22, at 9:30 a.m. Pacific time, Sean Klechack, W9FFF, a very popular YouTuber that goes by Ham Radio Dude, will interview both myself and Carlos and have us touch on some of the intricate aspects of combining ham radio with skydiving.
Sorry, there will be no Echo/Link or Allstar for the next mission. Due to an annoying simplex repeater that has cropped up in the last couple years we’ve had to move our 2 meter QSO frequency to 147.570 simplex. We will also be using an HF frequency of 14.289 MHZ. Yes, that is a strange choice for a frequency. Since we almost instinctively always chose frequencies that end with a zero or a 5, we hope that this frequency will be left alone for our contacts.
Come back now and then for any updates. You can also find us on Facebook.
Scheduled for June 18, 2022.
More information coming soon.
We would like to thank all those that participated in Mission 40. This was a very successful Mission for us in the sense of system performance. With the exceptions of first jump, where we were victim of the strangest anomaly, all three payload systems worked very well. It will take us a few weeks to sift through the logs and establish a QSO list. Remember, if you made a contact let us know by sending us an Email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please indicate the name of the jumper and a time. If you be attending Pacificon tomorrow we’ll have all the radio, video, and parachute gear to check out. Come on by and say hi.
1632 – Mark (AF6IM) is safely on the ground! YAY! That’s a wrap! Thank you!
1617 – Mark (AF6IM) is out of the plane – Jump (#3) – HF
1603 – Mark (AF6IM) is aboard the plane and on his way up 13,500′ – Jump (#3) – HF – Time: ~1615
1533 – Mark (AF6IM) is manifested – Jump (#3) – HF – Time: ~1615
1435 – Heads up! Next jump is an HF jump! 14.250 MHz.
1420 – Rob (KC6TYD) – Jump #2 – Safely on the ground! YAY!
1400 – Rob (KC6TYD) is out of the plane at 13,500′ and under canopy.
1350 – Rob (KC6TYD) is aboard the plane and heading up for jump #2 in approximately 10 min.
1327 – Rob (KC6TYD) – Jump #2 – Time: ~1410
1316 – Rob (KC6TYD) is suited up for Jump #2. Jump time: ~1350
1302 – Rob (KC6TYD) is getting suited up for jump #2. Here is the link for our streaming video: https://video.ibm.com/channel/N3MMeufqbcL
1220 – Mark (AF6IM) is safely on the ground! YAY!
1205 – Mark (AF6IM) is out of the plane at 13,500′ and under canopy! YAY!
1157 – Mark (AF6IM) is on board and on his way up. Should be out and under canopy in approximately 10 minutes.
1140 – Mark (AF6IM) will be loading shortly. Should be in the air approximately 15 minutes later.
1125- Mark, AF6IM, is manifested and we are expecting a load time of 12:00
Today we have our radio vests on display at the Marriott. We can also show you how are ari-to-ground video setup works and much more. Unfortunately we wont have anyone at the table tomorrow but you can still make a jump with a Skydiver. Listen in on 147.570 for Parachute Control for periodic updates. We will also make updates her on the webpage and on Facebook.
Refer to the previous post for more mission details.
Here is the link for our streaming video: https://video.ibm.com/channel/N3MMeufqbcL
Mission 40 is just over a week away and we’re scrambling to get things ready for this event. Our mission will be in conjunction with Pacificon. We will have a table setup at the Marriott where we’ll have the opportunity to show you the radio and parachute gear we use for our missions.
Our schedule for the weekend:
October 15-Meet & Greet at our table in Bishop Hall. Check out all our gear.
October 16-Mission 40! Make a contact with a Skydiver. We are short staffed and unfortunately won’t have anyone at the table. We expect the first jump to be sometime around 11:00 a.m. Listen for Parachute Control for updates on 147.570 simplex, or if you’re inside the Marriott, you can use our simplex crossband repeater on 445.950 with 100Hz tone.
October 17-Meet & Greet at our table in Bishop Hall. Check out all our gear.
If you make a contact with a skydiver please let us know by emailing email@example.com. Please indicate who you made the contact with and the time.
Mission 40 is scheduled for October 16, 2021. This will be in conjunction with Pacificon, ARRL’s Pacific Division Conference.
Come by and check out our booth in Bishop Hall across from the patio doors. We’ll have monitors showing all the live footage from the Drop Zone and from the air. We will also have a GOTA station so you can make a QSO with a skydiver.
Come back soon for more updates.