• Visited the Terrestrial Centre in Georgetown

  • Camped overnight Tuesday at Georgetown 



Day 21


Tuesday 30th August 2005

Click on the pictures for larger versions


Camp for Nights 20-21 - Monday 29th to Tuesday 30th August 2005 Camp for Night 22 - Wednesday 31st August 2005 Camp for Night 23 - Thursday 1st September 2005 Camp for Nights 24-25-26-27-28 - Friday 2nd to Tuesday 6th September 2005 Camp for Nights 29-30-31-32-33 - Wednesday 7th September to Sunday 11th September 2005 Camp for Night 34 - Monday 12th September 2005 Camp for Nights 35-36 - Tuesday 13th to Wednesday 14th September 2005  


Another fine, warm morning. We spent most of it doing washing.

After lunch we went for a drive around the streets. We noted where we could get fuel and food supplies.
A building named TerrEstrial came into view. I remembered the talk when we booked into the caravan park and that name was mentioned.

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We decided to take a look knowing it would have an entry fee.
A very friendly staff member greeted us and explained the reason for the existence of the building.
The air conditioning helped me decide to look around so we paid the fee and looked through.
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Below are shots of the collection that took my eye.
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During the afternoon we noticed a couple sitting outside their van. Mum and Judy went over and started chatting to them. They were a Dutch couple from South Australia.
I wandered around the park and took shots of the trees and general surroundings. I was taken by how shady it was, a perfect spot to camp on hot days.
2.58pm 2.58pm 3.03pm
3.04pm   3.06pm
3.08pm   3.08pm
When I returned mum and Judy were still chatting with the Dutch couple so naturally I joined in. The writing on their van also made me curious.

After chatting for a while I noticed the antenna on their vehicle. It was a Terlin multiband antenna which meant they had some sort of HF radio. I mentioned it to them and was told it was useless as the radio was out of action. They said they'd had the radio repaired in Mt Isa but it hadn't improved the reception. They understood how to run the radio and the antenna band selection but just received static on every band.
We chatted about radios and I told him I was a retired Electrician and how I'd been in Amateur Radio and loved radio since a kid. He asked if I'd like to have a look. I agreed but assured him if the setup had been looked at in Mt Isa by qualified people, the chances of me fixing it were around zero. Just the same he wanted me to have a look as he said he had nothing to lose.
The radio was a Barrett HF, mounted in the rear of his 4WD on the drivers side. The antenna cable ran through to the antenna on the front passenger side.
I'd seen various Barrett and Codan HF radios but had never used one.
He turned it on and sure enough, nothing!
At this stage it was late afternoon and Judy was getting ready to have a BBQ for tea, therefore I decided to just look at the basics. I checked that it went into transmit when the microphone button was pushed. I heard the changeover from receive to transmit so assumed that side was OK. The receiver was amazingly quiet though, like it wasn't receiving any signal at all, or it was stuffed.
The next obvious basic thing to do was to check that the antenna cable was continuous. Getting at the connection to the radio was tricky because of the method of mounting of the radio. The cable was strained into a very tight right angle and I thought at the time it may be a source of trouble. Once I got at the plug I could see it was ok, even though it wasn't a good idea to be strained as it was. What I did notice though was how the input socket moved as the plug was inserted and tightened. It went through my mind how the connection may be loose where it connected internally. By then it was sundown.
I didn't want to leave it until I'd proven the signal was reaching the receiver but I could see Judy burring up because I wasn't there to help her. I decided to quickly remove the radio cover and there it was, a loose connection internally. A "dry" joint at the socket internally. Because I always carry my electric soldering iron for small electrical jobs on the run, I grabbed it, resoldered the joint, turned it on and signals boomed in.
I got the owner to try the stations he knew would reply and it worked perfectly.
Of course he was ecstatic and couldn't thank me enough but I had a lot of explaining to do to Judy who still wasn't impressed.
She had setup the BBQ with mum and cooked the meal by the time I got to the table, in the dark!
It was a very quiet meal. I was well in the shit but it felt good to have sorted the radio problem out in such rough circumstances, especially after it had been looked at, supposedly repaired, and paid for in Mt Isa but still didn't work.

Judy came around eventually and we decided to walk the dogs a couple of blocks to The Travellers Tavern, one of the places that have fuel, groceries etc in Georgetown. It was a very warm night so we bought ice creams and tried to cool off while watching the passers by.
enjoyed the walk too but was tonguing for a drink by the time he arrived back at the van.
7.41pm   7.42pm



Last Updated : 28/01/2012 01:41 PM +1000