ARS Flight of the Bumblebees 2015

ARS Flight of the Bumblebees 2015

For the FOBB 2015, my Bumblebee site was on a small island in the middle of the Intracoastal Waterway near Topsail Island, NC.   It was fun to watch all kind of boats pass by throughout the afternoon.

Topsail Waterway

I operated from a little boat, which provided shade and a comfortable seat, as well as transportation.



AA4XX little boat

My rig was a K1, feeding a segmented half wave kite supported vertical for 40M and 20M.
The Padlette paddles were ty wrapped to the steering wheel

AA4XX BB stn

Fortunately, the winds were constant throughout the BB event, so I never had to deploy the backup fiberglass mast antenna support.  My nine foot delta box kite lifted the antenna in less than 5 minutes, from the time I started assembling the kite to the time it was at full height (100 ft).

AA4XX Kite Antenna

I spent the first hour on 40M, working 16 stations.  The band was noisy, and most sigs were not very strong.

The kite vertical was definitely working, as the majority of stations were giving me substantially stronger signal reports than I was giving them.

I decided to check out condx on 20M, and as soon as I reconfigured the segmented vertical for 20M, I got a big smile on my face.  Whoa, Mama!  Loud bees were swarming all over the place!!   I’m not sure what kind of antenna KZ2V (CA) BB#32 was running, but he answered my CQ while ending up being the only West Coast station I heard all day.  Thanks, Nick!  Most 20M stations also gave me considerably stronger signal reports than I gave them, echoing my previous experiences with kite supported half wave antennas flown over salt water.

It was also very interesting to receive a call from Bobby, AK4JA/M (GA).   Bobby’s mobile QRP tx was a good RST 579.

 The BIG SIG award goes to Rick, NK9G (WI) BB#97, who was 599+ for an extended period.
Thanks to all the fine operators out there who make the BB event so much fun, and a special thanks to Richard, KI6SN, for coordinating this event for us.

9 thoughts on “ARS Flight of the Bumblebees 2015

  1. Congrats to “Paulie From Raleigh” as winner of 2015 FOBB. Love that salt water! Well done. And what a great spot to operate. Paul always exemplifies the true spirit of ham radio.
    Marc, W4MPS

  2. Although I entered my first FOBB in 2015 and submitted a log, I never saw the results published. I enquired with the host about the results, but received no reply. I’ve given up on the ARS. Maybe you’ll have better results.
    72- Tom K4AKC

    1. Hi Tom,

      Like you, I have been periodically checking the ARS website
      for last year’s results with no success.

      It’s possible that the results were posted months ago, but
      none of us knew the link.

      A simple Google search still doesn’t point to the FOBB 2015
      results URL, but here’s the link:

      I’ll be listening for you during FOBB 2016.
      72, Paul AA4XX

    1. Hi Jim. No I haven’t been able to find any results for 2015 FOBB.
      I hope there will be a FOBB 2016, as the FOBB has been one of my
      favorite field activites. 72, Paul AA4XX

      1. do we just get on and operate anyway for 2016 ?? use last years number?? any ideals ?? FOBB really a great event AG4P

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