The Last BIG Field Day
an ARVN Documentary
41 minutes
QST Review: "A carefully crafted, professional production
on par with any other documentary you're likely to see"
The Last BIG Field Day
with BONUS Video
Palisades ARC Field Day 1971

"ham radio's comedy classic" - WA6ITF

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The Last BIG Field Day? What's up with that?

Here's the deal. The call sign W3AO has appeared in almost every Field Day log since 1999, when the group began an unbroken run at the top of the QST Top 10 box. Members of the Potomac Valley Radio Club and Columbia (MD) Amateur Radio Association assemble an awesome operation, with phone, cw and digital in all bands, satellite, VHF/UHF and all the bonus points a group can rack up. Their entry class is usually in the low to mid 20's. With top contest operators behind the controls, year after year their score is head and shoulders above everyone else.

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In 2003 and 2004, though, they were listed in 51A and 50A. Stations they worked had a hard time believing the report they were receiving. Was it real? Was it made up? How does a Field Day operation accomplish 50 or more transmitters? And why has it never been done after 2004?

The Last BIG Field Day documents the W3AO 2004 operation from their site just outside Baltimore, MD. We cover it all, and show you just how this huge station was assembled and operated. In true Field Day style, not everything went according to plan. But once again W3AO triumphed!

And yes, we'll show how they reached the 50+ transmitter total, and why nobody's done it since, and probably no one will.

The video runs 41 minutes, just about right to use as a club meeting program. No matter what size your club's Field Day effort, you'll find this program entertaining and enlightening.

The DVD also contains several bonus features:
  • Additional interviews. We couldn't squeeze it all in the program, so we added lots more interviews with the W3AO experts in a bonus interview segment.
  • News coverage. This is news coverage of producer KN4AQ's home club, the Raleigh Amateur Radio Society in North Carolina. Gary is the PIO for the club, and gets some air time on the local stations every year.
  • 1971 Pacific Palisades ARC Field Day Movie. This is a very special feature – a 35 minute "docudrama" of the club's Field Day operation, shot and edited on Super-8 film. It's great to see all the old equipment and young operators, many of whom are now no longer with us. This might make another good club meeting program. For more info on the movie, click HERE.
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two more clips from the show....
the ten-tower array: W3LPL running 20 phone:

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