Friday 24 May 2019

160 metres

160 metres isn't really a band I have ever done much operation on. When I was first licensed I suppose I had the space for a decent 160m antenna but wasn't really interested in that band. These days space and local noise are the main problems. Having recently rediscovered WSPR I thought I would try 160 again.
Whilst my Drake MN4C tuner will tune my G5RV antenna OK, an evening on WSPR showed that the antenna was pretty useless on that band with nothing heard and nobody hearing me. In any case reception was all but impossible with S9+ of noise on the WSPR frequency.

Plan B was to insert a ground rod outside the shack (easy enough as my shack is on the ground floor) and strap the two sides of the G5RV together and tuning it against ground. The noise I experience on 160 at the moment is pretty bad, S9+ so receive is difficult. I did however manage to get my 10w WSPR signal out as can be seen below

Additionally I managed to receive two German stations and one Swiss. I will experiment again with WSPR on 160, tonight I closed down just as darkness was closing in, a later session may enable some more distant reports. I would be happier running a maximum of 5 watts on this mode so will reduce power in future.

So it seems it was worth hammering in that ground if only I could trace the source of the noise.

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