Tuesday, 25 February 2014


Having an hour of radio time at the YL's while the Sunday roast was in the oven I fired up the TS450, having put up the pro whip the previous evening. Whilst I had a coffee i tuned round on my remote SDR rx so I could see what the bands were like from home before comparing it to this location.

I noted that on 18 Mhz at least a burst of RF from the TS450 did not kill the wifi connection on my netbook. I found a clear 18Mhz frequency and gave my callsign whilst listening on the sdr rx. To my suprise I heard my signal, weak but readable.  I would say about 3 and 3. I think conditions may have been a little odd as I wouldn't expect the groundwave on 18Mhz to make the approx 30 miles (48Kms) trip back to my home QTH. If I can solve the problem of the wifi cutting out as soon as I transmit on the other bands this would be an interesting experiment on the lower frequencies. I have read a little about NVIS propagation and I guess this is the effect that I am hearing, however for NVIS a horizontal antenna is normally required rather than the vertical Pro-Whip. I hope later in the year to be able to put up a low slung long wire or dipole of some sort at this location later in the year which presumably should result in a stronger signal over this sort of distance.

Whilst on the Higher bands I was pleased to work KB2ZVP on 18Mhz and Z63MED in Kosovo on 28Mhz. Both with the Pro-Whip vertical about a metre from the ground.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

TX Factor

If you have a spare 30 minutes or so have a look at the new UK produced amateur radio Videocast

"TX Factor" "TX Factor is a professionally produced programme presented by radio amateurs for radio amateurs "

Looking at the first programme I was very impressed. The quality of the video was extremely good and the whole thing was very interesting and most professional. I am looking forward to the next episode.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

A little bit of operating time

I managed an hour or two of radio work from the /alternative location today (the YL's house) having dodged the showers of heavy rain to get the pro whip vertical set up.

As usual from this spot 40 metres was pretty much unusable due to S9+ of noise but the higher bands were OK. I made a few contacts on 10 and 12 metres but the highlight was a nice QSO with HB9HFB, Chris in Basel, on 17 metres band conditions allowed us to have a nice contact, much better than many of the "59 QRZ??" type contacts that seem to be so popular at the moment.

Below is the pro-whip antenna, behind it and of course much larger is the nearby mobile phone mast which I suspect is the source of much of the QRM I suffer at this location. It makes me appreciate how low my noise level is at home.