News Update from the VK9CI Team

News Update from the VK9CI Team

The team is now fully established on the island although their Internet communications are very limited. When you do hear us please spot us as we cant easily let people know when and where we are on otherwise.

Lee and Adrian have managed to send the following photos and notes today to give you an idea of the arrangements and the station out on Cocos Keeling Island.


We landed on Cocos Keeling Island on Tuesday having flown from Christmas Island that afternoon. The first thing we have noticed is that its windy…a constant 20-30 knot wind from the south east – 25 hours a day so far….


Lee VK3GK (L) and Peter Robinson (R) soon to be VK9FCKI

On the ground we were met by Peter Robinson who was keen to sit for his amateur radio licence. After dinner the first night, Lee VK3GK set off with him to his home where he conducted a remote assessment with Ron VK2DQ via Skype. After a few internet issues, we now have a new resident ham on Cocos Keeling Island. Keep a look out for Peter VK9FCKI in the near future!

VK9CI Takes Shape

This is our residence on Cocos Keeling Island. You can see the 2 x Yagi for 20/15/10 and 17/12/30 plus the 160M vertical (inverted L on a 18M long fiber glass pole) and 10 to 80M vertical in the yard. The house is locally known as “pizza house” but the official name is “My Island Home”.

Getting the 200kg of baggage to the house was an exercise itself! Once there we managed to initially erect the 80-10m vertical using a convenient “Hills Hoist” clothesline (very familiar to many in VK at least).

To get the beam antennas in the air, we then needed a couple of suitable lengths of pipe. The locals on the island suggested we take a trip to the local “transfer station” which they said should have everything we needed – a bit like the local  “Bunnings” hardware store island style! (Australian’s will be familiar with those stores – equivalents would be Lowes or Home Depot in the USA).


With the necessary pipe in hand, the team set about completing the antenna systems. You can see below Tony and Adrian assembling the 2 element Rippletech Yagi for 20/15/10m.

On the Air

We are very happy with the results, with a lower noise floor than when on Christmas Island and pileups such as this one on 17m up to 5kHz wide, as seen on our Icom IC7300 radios kindly loaned to us by Icom America.

We are now looking forward to Chris VK3FY and Peter VK3FN joining us this weekend for the Oceania DX CW Contest! Still plenty of time to get VK9CI in the log so hope to see you on the air, and again please spot us if you hear us as our other communication avenues off the island are limited.

First round of Logs Uploaded to ClubLog and M0OXO Log Search

Charles M0OXO also reports that the first round of logs have arrived from the team on OC-003. They are now being uploaded to Clublog plus M0OXO OQRS and Logsearch.

73 from the team on Cocos (Keeling) Island de VK9CI QRV 160-10m!


News update from Lee VK3GK at VK9CI

News update from Lee VK3GK at VK9CI

The team has arrived safely on Cocos (Keeling) Island yesterday and we had the 40-10m vertical running within a couple of hours. Today we have got the 160m inverted L erected and expect to be on 160m tonight (CKI time).

The 2 element 20/15/10m Rippletech lightweight DXpedition Yagi has been going gangbusters.

Conditions are up and down. Plenty of JA’s and always strong, have worked several VK’s now we have open paths 360 degrees, unlike Christmas Island. The team has been active and has been heard on 20/17 and 15m CW today in VK5 with plenty of spots from other parts of the world.

Dont forget to look for us also during the Oceania DX CW Contest this weekend!

Meanwhile, VK9XI operation continues on FT8 from Christmas Island

Cliff VK9VKL will be continuing to operate VK9XI on FT8 as well from Christmas Island through until the 17th of October, so if you missed out working the team up until now there is still time on FT8 and potentially other modes. Operation will be sporadic until Saturday afternoon (Island Time) and then he can throw all his time Sunday and Monday into it.



VK9CI 1st Station on the air! Build Continues on others

VK9CI 1st Station on the air! Build Continues on others

The team has established their first station on 20m and are currently running CW. They are being heard in VK as well as the USA.

The following is a sample from N0UN’s DX Blog again who made contact with VK9CI this morning.

They were also worked by a number of VK and ZLs. The word from the team was that the remaining stations were under construction so stay tuned as more bands are opened.


VK9XI packed up to fly to Cocos Keeling Island today

VK9XI packed up to fly to Cocos Keeling Island today

The team is now packing up on Christmas Island and is preparing to move to Cocos Island later today according to Luke VK3HJ. The team has put well over 7500 contacts into the logs as VK9XI and has tried their hardest to make contact with all who called. Sometimes, however, sleep just managed to get in the way – at least for Lee VK3GK (photo courtesy Luke VK3HJ).

Update: Finally completed teardown and repack for Cocos at 11am local time. Expecting to arrive in cocos around 5.30pm local so we hope to have at least 1 station operating tonight. Keep a look out for VK9CI tonight from about 1100z.

The team didn’t fly all the way to Christmas Island not to have a brief look around either. Here are some snaps from Luke VK3HJ.

VK9XI Logs available via M0OXO Logsearch and now via Clublog!

VK9XI Logs available via M0OXO Logsearch and now via Clublog!

The Christmas Island VK9XI Log is now being uploaded to Clublog and will soon appear on their Logsearch and on the Expedition page in due course.


(For anyone seeking the log for the previous VK9XI Expedition in 1995, they can now find the Log here;

QSL Card Requests can be submitted via the M0OXO OQRS Service

 Just pick VK9XI from the callsign drop down list.

Antenna Setup on VK9XI

Antenna Setup on VK9XI

The following photos are from Adrian KO8SCA via Twitter of the area the 160m antenna was installed and of the general setup on the island.

160m antenna location (planned)
Antennas at VK9XI
Sunset on Christmas Island – Luke VK3HJ
AS-SAL30-MK2 RX array tuned and performing well

AS-SAL30-MK2 RX array tuned and performing well

We just got the AS-SAL30-MK2 RX array tuned and performing well. As the video shows, from an S9 to S0-S1 signal flipping the arrays direction 180 degrees. We could hear many W’s calling on our Sunrise this morning but just too deep in the noise to get them, hopefully this will make the difference. Listen around 22:30z….. But the opening is very short to East coast USA….. Maybe just only several minutes….


160m Antennas are installed – VK9XI on top band

160m Antennas are installed – VK9XI on top band

We finally got the 160m vertical up last night. Managed ti work several JA’s and west coast USA last night. On our sunrise this morning, managed to work N1DG East coast USA and a few EU inc England snd France. Also got an EU pileup but in the noise…. So this morning will be installing the SAL30 RC array.