Tic Hill Site Visit

21.08.07??? Visit was arranged with the Quarry Owners for 10 AM

Those in attendance were Cliff VK6LZ, Geoff VK6NX, Max VK6XME, and Don VK6DUK.

We met the new Quarry Manager Cliff Kelly and explained the Group and the History of Tic Hill.??? He was most co-operative and interested.??? (We also left a cake for the staff morning tea)

He escorted us to the site, this was necessary as we had to sign the Visitor?s book at the main office and Safety rules dictate that visitors are escorted through the mine workings.

In the event we were unable to gain entry to the Radio Bunker due to a vandalised top padlock which could not be removed.

22.08.07??? We were again escorted to ?Ticky? by Cliff Kelly who stayed to see what was installed inside out of interest.

Those in attendance were Cliff VK6LZ, and Don VK6DUK.

The faulty padlock was removed (courtesy of angle grinder and generator supplied by Don)

The six large 500 aHr wet cell batteries each measured 2.25 Volts, but as expected the electrolyte was at minimum level since last top up was February 2006 when batteries were installed, these were topped up with commercial distilled water to maximum and took 22 litres.

In the process a Power lead had to be loosened to allow access to the filler cap which resulted in the 70cm repeater powering down.??? It was decided not to power it up again until next visit so as to allow the batteries to recharge.???? Vaseline was applied to all connectors.

The 4WD club?s (car) battery was also checked and found to be below plate level so was also topped up from distilled water already on site.

A supply of 60 Litres of Distilled water was taken to the site, which leaves 38 litres for future top ups.

It was noted that the Solar Panels were providing 4 to 6 amps on an overcast day but that the regulator green LED was only illuminated weakly, it was decided to leave the spare regulator on site and do the change over on the next visit as time was moving on.

The two meter repeater VK6RTH which had audio problems was removed for service.

The Bunker was cleaned up, a new padlock was fitted to the top of the outside gate, and the site was vacated at 13.45 hours.

The repeater was subsequently delivered to Tony VK6YAG for repair.? It was found to have a corroded plug/socket on the audio board which Tony replaced and returned the unit to Cliff VK6LZ at the WARG Meeting.??? (Not sure if anything else was done)

04.09.07 ??? Visit was arranged with the Quarry Owners for 10 AM

Those in attendance were Cliff VK6LZ, Don VK6DUK, Mark VK6UHF, and Eddie VK6KEG.???? After signing the visitor book and giving the Manager a cake for his trouble, we were again escorted to ?Ticky?.

The Battery voltages were checked at 2.2 volts each.? The coax from the cavities was checked at 2 to 1 SWR and the Antenna (Dual Band) was checked at 1.3 to one SWR.

The replacement Solar Regulator was fitted and both LEDs came on, the input from the solar panels was measured at 2 to 5 Amps (the WX was Cloudy and Raining).? It was found that the Power from the batteries was down, this was caused by four of the battery links being loose and required tightening.

The Two metre repeater VK6RTH was refitted and turned on, and an on-air test was carried out with VK6YAG.

The 70 Cm Repeater was then booted up (requires on air DTMF Codes) and tested on-air.

A serious water leak has developed with rain coming down the coax/solar power pipes and running onto the bench – this will have to be addressed on next visit.? (The log book which was in a plastic bag will also need replacing)

Note until we have obtained the required climbing gear, no tower climbing is allowed due to insurance problems.

Cliff VK6LZ

NOTE:? ACCESS TO VK6RTH SITE IS STRICTLY RESTRICTED

The site is designated as a ?MINE SITE? and as such comes under Health & Safety Legislation.??? There are also Insurance Ramifications for both WARG and Hanson.

All visits MUST be co-ordinated with the Quarry Management, and Visitors MUST be signed In and Out in the Visitors book in the HANSON main Toodyay Road Office.

All Visitors must be escorted (Convoy) through the Quarry workings, this means that visits can be made during the Quarry working hours on weekdays only. (No Weekend Access)

In Practice to save calling for an escort we have been allowed to EXIT only, through the old workings and back gate after phoning the manager to sign us out on leaving.? ut beware heavy trucks coming the other way.

Currently access is by Four Wheel Drive only for the last 100 metres due to a large wash-away deep ditch.????? Two Wheel Drives need to be parked at this point.

I have (February 2006 when delivering the batteries) taken my 2 WD over the ?ditch? but it is now much deeper, perhaps we could get permission to fill it in with surrounding large rocks when we have established good relations with the new manager (keep supplying cakes).

DO NOT ?ROCK THE BOAT? BY VISITING UNANNOUCED PARTICULARLY AT WEEK ENDS AS THIS COULD LOOSE US THE SITE

Currently Hanson is experiencing vandals at week ends and after hours, in one recent case, the site security apprehended a group trying to start up some heavy equipment, they are to appear in the Midland Court House shortly.

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