• [G3XBM] 2m FT8 QRP

    From G3XBM via rec.radio.amateur.moderat@21:1/5 to All on Tue May 31 13:59:25 2022
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    Roger G3XBM's (Mainly) Amateur Radio Blog

    2m FT8 QRP

    Posted: 31 May 2022 09:07 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/2m-ft8-qrp.html

    As 10m seemed dire, I decided to go on 2m FT8 with 5W from the IC-705. Immediately, I was spotted by a couple of stations.
    UPDATE 1605z: Already my 5W to the big wheel omni antenna has been spotted
    by 9 stations including a couple in Northern Ireland. Who needs beams and
    high power?

    10m FT8 (5W QRP)

    Posted: 31 May 2022 08:18 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/10m-ft8-5w-qrp.html

    At about 1515z, I QSYed to 10m FT8. So far, no spots on RX and TX.

    SLF amateur DX

    Posted: 31 May 2022 04:54 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/slf-amateur-dx.html

    Today, I heard about some remarkable experiments at 270Hz using
    earth-electrode antennas.
    Hello OM'S!
    After successful 470 Hz transmissions, we (DK7FC, DL3JPN and DL7NN) tried
    to push to even longer wavelengths. The next goal is/was 270 Hz, i.e.
    1111 km wavelength. First, the existing ground loop at the transmitter
    site had to be resonated by enlarging the series capacitor. After all, 116
    µF was required.
    According to the wavelength / 2 PI definition, in this case we reach the
    far field after 178.8 km. The distance between our locations is 324 km,
    which is far field by definition. Since Stefan's reception was exclusively
    in the E-field, a simple coupling of the magnetic field could be ruled
    out. After an integration time of 4.5 hours, Stefan achieved a carrier S/N
    of 17.84 dB in a bandwidth of 62.2 µHz. Even in the spectrogram heavily overlaid with summery QRN, the carrier was still visible. For comparison,
    the 270.005 Hz transmission at a distance of 4 km from the transmitter on
    the DL0HOT grabber with a bandwidth of 3.8 mHz.
    This may have been the first successful detection of far-field SLF
    transmission by radio amateurs.

    10m WSPR QRP TX

    Posted: 31 May 2022 05:43 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/10m-wspr-qrp-tx_31.html

    As my 10m antenna (not the PC) is free, I am on 10m WSPR TX with the 500mW W5OLF beacon. Nobody has spotted me yet. I first turned it on about 0928z.
    At the moment, I have not seen evidence of Es here.
    UPDATE 1243z: Nobody has spotted me yet today.


    Posted: 31 May 2022 02:18 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/heathkits.html

    When I was young (OK a long time ago!) Heathkits were popular. They sold
    some very good kits that made some classy pieces of equipment including VHF
    and HF transceivers.
    In recent years, they tried to make a comeback, but their range was poor
    and overpriced. Their website still exists, although goodness knows how!
    They must have some very dedicated followers. With low cost kits from
    China, making kits for radio amateurs must be very hard these days unless
    the kits are good and the price is very competitive.
    As mentioned yesterday, I coveted the valved HW30 2m AM transceiver. I
    realised that my website did not have a page on this, so I have added one.
    See https://sites.google.com/view/g3xbm4/home/vhfuhfmicrowaves/vhfuhf-commercial-rigs/hw30 .
    See also https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heathkit for the whole Heathkit
    My whole professional career and hobby of 60 years owes a lot to Heathkit
    since my dad bought me a Heathkit Electronics Workhop for Christmas 1961.

    8m experiment (Tuesday)

    Posted: 31 May 2022 08:46 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/8m-experiment-tuesday_31.html

    Later, I hope to again be on 40.680 MHz USB dial FT8 TX. I usually
    transmit in the first period with signals about 1.95 kHz HF. It would be
    good to have some QRM, HI!!
    It seems I need Es or aircraft scatter to have QSOs beyond the local area.
    When the band is open via Es, I get widely copied despite my QRP. This a
    bit limiting!
    UPDATE 0936z: My FT8 TX was turned on at about 0928z. No spots yet on RX
    or TX.
    UPDATE 1200: At the moment I am letting the rig cool, so I am
    disconnected. On the transmission earlier, nothing spotted on RX or TX.
    UPDATE 1447z: After another day so far without spots on RX or TX, I am seriously considering going QRT on 8m and perhaps concentrating on 6m FT8
    or 10m FT8. I have already found out my limitations and doubt much more can
    be learnt unless I increase my ERP, which is not my aim.
    UPDATE 1546z: Now QRT on 8m and QSYed to 10m FT8 QRP.

    Sunspots - Tuesday May 31st 2022

    Posted: 31 May 2022 01:29 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/sunspots-tuesday-may-31st-2022.html

    Solar flux is 101 and the SSN 40. A=9 and K=2.

    Heathkit HW30 2m rig

    Posted: 30 May 2022 08:59 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/heathkit-hw30-2m-rig.html

    When I was young I coveted a Benton Harbour Lunchbox.
    This was a 5W 2m AM transceiver. At the time, 2m was very quiet and a super-regen RX was fine. These receivers were sensitive, but lacked sharp selectivity.
    Looking back these rigs were quite poor, although I always liked the ergonomics. Versions were made for 11m CB, 10m and 6m too. In their day,
    they served a purpose, but these would struggle these days.
    I once owned the manual, but never the rig. These days all the
    functionality and far, far, more may be obtained in a tiny dual band VHF FM handheld.Se

    That free PDF book

    Posted: 30 May 2022 06:47 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/that-free-pdf-book.html

    Tomorrow is the last day of May. We have visitors, so I shall not finish
    the book as planned by the end of May!
    My current deadline (self imposed) is mid-June. If I manage to do it
    sooner, you will hear it here!


    Posted: 30 May 2022 06:27 AM PDT

    The numbers have been released for the number of Dayton Hamfest attendees
    over the last few years. There were fewer attendees this year, but not down much. Not bad for the first "in person" event since 2019.
    See http://www.southgatearc.org/news/2022/may/hamvention-attendance-figure-announced.htm#.YpTFkY7MLrc

    8m experiment (Monday)

    Posted: 30 May 2022 06:35 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/8m-experiment-monday_30.html

    As I proved that with my new USB cable 10m FT8 worked fine on the IC-705, l shall resume 8m FT8 TX tests shortly on 40.680 USB dial as there seems to
    be Es about.
    UPDATE 1147z: Now on 40.680 MHz USB dial FT8 TX.
    UPDATE 1211z: QRT as the transceiver cools. Back on about 1245z.
    UPDATE 1308z: Back on 40.680 MHz USB dial FT8 TX. Still no spots on RX or
    TX. Bad day so far. It appears that unless there is Es propagation, I am unlikely to be spotted. The trouble is, I do not know who is monitoring!
    Often there are monitors in places that do not have 8m TX permits

    Sunspots - Monday May 30th 2022

    Posted: 30 May 2022 03:02 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/sunspots-monday-may-30th-2022.html

    Solar flux is 98 and the SSN 42. A=15 and K=3.

    8m experiment (Sunday)

    Posted: 29 May 2022 05:45 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/8m-experiment-sunday_29.html

    As I am busy setting up with 10m FT8 on the IC-705, it is unlikely I shall
    be testing on 8m FT8 today. Maybe at teatime?
    It would appear that by Es my QRP 8m FT8 signal can be widely copied across Europe. Unlike many of the better equipped stations on 8m, I have not been copied outside Europe.
    UPDATE 1245z: On 8m FT8 QRP TX on 40.680.

    FT8 with the IC-705

    Posted: 29 May 2022 11:05 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/ft8-with-ic-705.html

    A while ago I tried FT8 with the IC-705 using a USB cable from the PC. As
    the noise level was high, I stuck with the FT817ND and SignaLink instead.
    As I have now got a good screened and choked USB cable, I shall try again later.
    UPDATE 0858z: Well it works on TX with a spot by G0FWX (160km), and I think
    it works on RX, although nobody spotted yet. At the moment it gives 5W
    without the ALC coming on. Assuming all is fine, I shall probably download WSJT-Z, which goes back onto CQ TX after a QSO. With WSJT-X it goes to RX
    after a QSO.
    UPDATE 1005z: Working on both RX and TX. Initially I was seeing none of my
    RX spots on PSKreporter, but there are lots now as well as lots of TX
    spots. Best DX on TX is a spot of me by ZS6KVZ (9120km). No QSOs yet. I
    wonder how much better FT8 is than SSB? Having worked ZL with 10W SSB some years ago, I am pretty sure I can get DXCC on 10m FT8 if I tried. Not sure
    I really want to try. 10m FT8 at 5W seems too easy!
    UPDATE 1802z: Spotted by 36 stations on 10m FT8 TX with 5W. Furthermost is DP0GVN (13687km) in Antarctica. Other reports from S.America, Middle East
    and China. 10m FT8 certainly works with the IC-705.

    Many years ago in the back of the garage

    Posted: 28 May 2022 11:32 PM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/10-years-ago-in-back-of-garage.html

    This is my grandson in 2010 (I think) "helping" me in the back of the
    garage. He is now 14 years old.

    Final Dayton report

    Posted: 28 May 2022 10:22 PM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/final-dayton-report.html

    For those who went to Dayton, Ohio, USA, I think it is fair to say that reactions were mixed. Many enjoyed the huge fleamarket, but many were disappointed with the new "toys" being launched.
    There were few real eye openers and Kenwood was not there at all. I think
    they are already leaving the amateur radio market. In my view others will follow as there is no longer a mass market with juicy profits.
    See https://k9zw.wordpress.com/2022/05/25/dayton-xenia-hamvention-2022-jeff-ke9vs-final-report/

    Sunspots - Sunday May 29th 2022

    Posted: 28 May 2022 10:21 PM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/sunspots-sunday-may-29th-2022.html

    Solar flux is 102 and the SSN 34 (low compared with recent days). A=24 and K=3.

    Disappointing HF conditions here

    Posted: 28 May 2022 07:51 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/disappointing-hf-conditions-here.html

    Certainly, up to now, 10m and 8m have been very disappointing here with no spots at all on TX or RX. I think conditions are disturbed, but I am seeing
    no evidence here of F2 or Es propagation.

    8m FT8

    Posted: 28 May 2022 09:11 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/8m-ft8.html

    At about 0745z, my QRP 8m FT8 TX was turned on on 40.680 MHz USB dial. No
    spots on TX or RX.
    UPDATE 1317z: No spots on TX or RX 8m FT8 today.
    UPDATE 1611z: Yet again, 8m FT8 spots were exchanged with EI9KP (649km).
    With a received report of -10dB S/N I can only conclude that this was
    either aircraft or Es. I have lost count of how many times he has spotted
    me on 8m FT8. He is by far my most regular reporter. He was also copied
    here (again).

    10m QRP WSPR TX

    Posted: 28 May 2022 03:00 AM PDT http://g3xbm-qrp.blogspot.com/2022/05/10m-qrp-wspr-tx_28.html

    Yet again, I am on 10m WSPR TX with my 500mW W5OLF beacon. No spots yet.
    What I thought was today was yesterday.

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