Friday, May 11, 2007

35Mhz interference -- update from the noble Armitage

Hi Guys.
I am surprised at the reaction of some people wanting to go back to the dark ages of 60 Mhz and no this is not a plot to make pilots buy the new 2.4Ghz equipment. This is a serious threat and is being treated as such.
The truth of the matter is as follows.
I have received numerous verbal accounts of pilots at a few sites claiming to have been hit by interference. Only a few of the less vocal pilots have bothered to put pen to paper and give me the facts on the official Incident Report Form that can be downloaded from the SAMAA website. Those pilots who have bothered have had their reports directed to ICASA immediately.
The new threat from The Four Wheel Drive Club has only surfaced this week and again it was passed directly to ICASA with a strong request as to why this could be happening after the Aeromodelling community has been allocated the band from 35.000 Mhz to 35.500Mhz.
I understand ICASA were as surprised as we were but it would seem the original licences were issued in 1986, long before the band was allocated to us and these odd ones may have slipped through the cracks as far as they are concerned (though they do not admit it).
The licences are due to expire in December 2007 and will not be renewed. In the meantime ICASA are busy migrating these users off the frequencies they are using on the 35 Mhz band. I have this in black and white from ICASA.
I would therefore recommend as a safety feature that until we have an assurance from ICASA that these users are definitely off our band we should not use the following frequencies. 35.220, 35.230, 35.250, 35.300,. I am not sure about the 35.325 spot they may be using. I am still awaiting clarification from ICASA about that but if it is true and the 4 x 4 guys are using it then 35.320 and 35.330 spots should also be avoided.
I will update everyone when I have more information
Dave Armitage

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