26 Jun 2012

6m Surprise

Conditions have been POOR - not much being worked the whole of last week, however one late evening (11:30 Local) I switched on and the radio had been left on 6m and was buzzing with East coast USA Stations - I now have USA on 6m - this is quite amazing as in my entire time of monitoring this band I have NEVER heard anything other than EU stations or white noise.
People rave about this band but I have NEVER found anything shout about so whats all the fuss ?
I guess I have never been around at the right moment to witness these conditions - now my dial is tuning 6m often, whilst my other rig checks ten.
What a strange band - this morning I am running 6m Wspr and had been spotting GW3NJW since about 09:00, his signal has steadily but surely fallen away from his original -8dB and at  around 10:30 at -17dB he's gone but I will leave Wspr running, who knows whats going to show up next.

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18 Jun 2012

Fiddling on Two

During this morning I had been taking advantage of the better Wx and went outside to play with mast's and poles in an effort to find  suitable  support for my H/Brewed 2m beam - the 7/10m fiberglass poles had too much give (even with topmost sections removed) so settled on a 5m painters pole  which I got last year for painting a difficult to reach gable end.
I decided not to go to the full height  but instead opted to use some 32mm Upvc piping for the top of the mast which easily slipped over the top - It was a calm day, but had it been too breezy staking would be required - the 4 ele beam was secured by using the fitting off an old 10m job though I feel it might be just too heavy, a lighter one may be more appropriate - with some thought I'm sure we might brew one up.
So sitting in some rather pleasant sunshine hooked up the Analyser  to discover the Swr was 1.2 across the band and a quick tune across the lower end produced ON0VHF in JO20HP central Belgium - what a surprise for me as we are low lying here in the south and 80% surrounded by sea water - I dont know if there is a lift on or not but then heard GB3VHF up on the North downs in Kent, rotating to the south heard F5ZGF in IN88JS in central France.
I have never taken an interest in VHF but the results today so far at sea level are very interesting - imagine what one might hear, or even better work, on much higher ground ? I am  encouraged to take this prototype set-up out in the field and do some 2m CW.
I  am looking for a set-up thats very quick to deploy minimum fuss - same for HF - my Roach pole/single band dipoles always seem to work well though - but the best part is being out in the sunshine with the fun of discovering new things.

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