Ham Radio

Saturday, February 28, 2009
Site Meter Visits

It always amazes me where in the World you are all located! Thanks again for visiting Ham Radio.Operator.Blogspot.com and
Planetham.org 73 Have a nice Sunday!
posted by Simon Davison @ 11:25 pm   0 comments
Early Morning Expedition To Muddy SOTA NP028

Early this morning I ended up working 145 FM portable from North Pennine summit on the air 028 whilst walking the dog.
I used:
My hand held radio Kenwood TH-7F and 5 watts into a Diamond SRH771 antenna. Despite been up and about early in the morning I still managed to work Kevin - M0XLT & Adrian M3IAO. Watch the video to see how I avoided the MUD bath up on The Rombalds Moor SOTA.

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posted by Simon Davison @ 9:22 pm   2 comments
Friday, February 27, 2009
20 Meters Is Open!

Some Nice DX In the Log!
posted by Simon Davison @ 11:10 pm   0 comments
Thursday, February 26, 2009
YouTubers Make QSO


posted by Simon Davison @ 7:55 am   0 comments
Monday, February 23, 2009
EA1GHW Double Moxon Style Homebrew Satellite Antenna
Thanks to fellow ham and friend Edmundo - EA1GHW, I am able to show you another great home brew satellite antenna system. ED, EA1GHW from Spain has been working satellites a lot longer than myself and has had some great results with his home brew antenna systems and a couple of hand held rigs. I first saw ED in action via his YouTube video's working through AO-51 and since then we have become friends via the Internet. I keep hearing ED and ED hears me via the "birds" but unfortunately we have always had too many other stations causing lots of QRM and have yet to get each other in the log! I am sure we will get over that soon with the better weather coming and the dark nights ending.
Hear you can see ED's design on paper.

This image shows the EA1GHW satellite antenna ready to assemble.

This image shows the completed satellite dual band antenna system ready to go!

Edmundo EA1GHW mentioned that he intends to add more elements to the antenna in the near future increasing the antenna gain. He also has told me that the EA1GHW antenna is working well so far! Well done ED! thanks for sharing the images of your great antenna. Keep up the good work!
I will be listening out for ED on the future satellite passes.

posted by Simon Davison @ 12:38 pm   1 comments
Sunday, February 22, 2009
A Fun Day Had By All
Sunday was a fun day for Yorkshire Radio Ham's M1PAC - Phil, M6AXL -Adam, M3TLL - Louise and myself 2E0HTS - Simon.
Adam and Phil set up their station early Sunday morning up on Rombalds moor which is high up out in the sticks near to our QTH. They were running QRP and worked through plenty of pile ups on the 144 SSB portion of the VHF bands.

Louise and I joined them in the afternoon and worked one or two nice contacts on HF which included the previously mentioned CRAG CASHOTA activation at Elslack operated by MX0BCQ/p with Kevin - M0XLT at the controls.
Our Portable/Mobile QTH
Adams New Beast of a Beam with Human Rotator Phil
Phil, Adam & Louise
The Yorkshire Moor Top Ham Brigade!

Check out the action and signals/stations worked on the video, including M0YCM-Les, G4JNN-Paul, 5D0IPY-Rachid & MX0BCQ/P-Kevin.

posted by Simon Davison @ 11:33 pm   0 comments
Friday, February 20, 2009
Craven Radio Amateur Group CRAG R.S.G.B Presentation
This week Louise - M3TLL and myself were invited to attend the Craven Radio Amateur Group Club meeting at their Club headquarters. The CRAG group are a very active group of radio amateurs that operate from North Yorkshires Craven District. On arrival we were well received by all of the Craggie's and it was great to be able to put faces to the voices I have been speaking with for so long.

The evening was very interesting as the Club had an video evening  arranged which featured the latest digital mode - D-STAR. The video was very informative and was quite exclusive as the R.S.G.B region 4 Deputy region manager Nigel - G1JKE who presented the film had not had the opportunity to show at his local club yet. 

The evening also included a special presentation to Chris - 2E0XLG who has recently upgraded his licence from his foundation call M3XLG.  Chris had made tremendous progress whilst operating under M3XLG with a maximum output power of 10 watts. Chris's achievements were outstanding during 2008 and his awards were for: Leading Foundation Licensee RSGB 144 MHZ Low power Contest 2008 & The RSGB 144 MHZ UK Activity 2008 Contest.
 Chris has also won the RSGB 6Meter UK Activity 2008 Contest as well as the RSGB 70CMS UK Activity 2008 Contest, and Chris will shortly be receiving a RSGB Shield for his amazing efforts. Well done Chris! Way to Go!

Chris 2E0XLG receiving his R.S.G.B Awards presented by Nigel G1JKE - R.S.G.B Region 4 Deputy region Manager.

We really enjoyed meeting our old friend Kevin - M0XLT and Richard- 2E0NTT as well as new Faces but known voices M1DHA - Alan, G4CPA - Geoff, G7WAW - David, G7COD - Andrew, M0DRF - Derry, 2E0ZCL - Barry, G4BLH - Mike, G1JKE - Nigel, M0GGR - Andy, M6AXL - Adam and Chris - 2E0XLG.

We will be looking forward to meeting up and also working them all again soon. The Craven Radio Amateur Group will be active this Sunday operating CASHOTA (Castles And Stately Homes On The Air) from a roman Fort nearby to Elsack in North Yorkshire.
posted by Simon Davison @ 8:43 pm   0 comments
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Home brew IOIo (MK 6) Step by Step Assembly
Since last summer many off you have contacted me regarding the Satellite antenna designed by EA4CYQ which is known as the IOIo beam. I already have built a total of 5 IOIo antenna's so far, all slightly different made up of anything available at hand. As many of you already know I have been working the ISS and many Satellites from my shack using IOIo beams with good results running QRP.

So with the feedback and fantastic comments I have been receiving I thought I would try a next version using some materials I had knocking around.
 But this time I thought I would share the build and decided to post the step by step instructions here at ham radio operator blogspot and planet ham.The EA4CYQ original design was followed and this is how it goes!

Materials used:

12mm aluminium box section tube. (boom)

3mm plastic sheet. (insulators and clamps)

2.4mm Welding wire. (elements)

Various self tapping screws.

Cable ties.

50 ohm feeder/coaxial cable. (2 lengths for dual bands)

Sponge foam and insulation/sticky tape. (handle)

Step 1) The IOIo paperwork.  I made the elements from 2.4mm diameter T.I.G welding wire which worked out at:
 145 mhz reflecting element( I )= 1004mm.
 145 mhz loop element ( O) total length = 2058mm. 
435 mhz reflecting element ( I )= 337mm. 
435 mhz loop element (0) total length = 642mm.
 The spacing of each element from back to front = 
152mm, - 324mm, - 100mm, -  51mm & - 108mm. 
(visible on the drawing , click to enlarge).
Step 2) I don't like wasting materials so I joined two short scrap pieces of tube together by filing some 12mm round bar into a square interference type fitting.
Once filed up I was able to tap the squared round bar into the ally tube to join the boom. 
Once mated up it gave a total length of 1000mm (1M) 
Step 3) Using some 3mm plastic sheet I drew a desired shape and cut the plastic using a hand shear otherwise known as a bench knife. The sheet at this stage is used to insulate and  mount the elements to the boom. Also mark the element spacings using a marker pen on the boom.
Step 4) drill 6 holes that will allow the cable ties to hold the elements as well as clamp the insulated mounts to the boom. I drilled the centre of the plastic so I could see the previously pen marked position of each mount easily on the ally boom. Just one more to go giving a grand total of 6 plastic insulated mounts.
Step 5) Here you can see the central holes showing the spacing pen marks of the boom. Once lined up, pilot drill the boom and attach the plastic mounts/insulators using self tapping screws.
Step 6) Time to solder the 50 ohms coaxial feeders to both loops, then cable tie (tie rap) the elements to the fitted insulator mounts. 
A close up of the 435mhz Loop and reflecting element cable tied and soldered up.
Repeat the technique for the 145mhz side of the antenna and use a separate 50 ohms feeder. Once this stage is complete the IOIo starts to take shape and just needs the elements fixing firmly. 
Stage 7) I cut a 50mm x 1000mm strip of plastic, aligned the elements and using more self tapping screws I was able to clamp down the elements. This stiffened up the antenna and prevented the elements from moving out of line. The antenna is now ready to solder the plugs on to connect to your desired radio. I used 2 PL259 plugs.

Here is a closer look at the bottom side of the finished mk 6 IOIo antenna.  (the front end 435 mhz )
The full picture showing the bottom  side of the finished antenna.
The view here shows the complete antenna from the top side.Here is a close up of the finished project.
I tried it using my old Yaesu FT-470 and was very pleased when I opened up a repeater 25 miles away +60 db on 145mhz. It worked well also on 433mhz providing me with  instant and easy access into the local 70cms repeater. (not bad to say its resonant on 435mhz and I was inside my qth using less than 5 watts.) I will try it on a satellite over the next few days.

So once again I was pleased with my antenna tinkering and this model was much lighter so I shouldn't get too much arm ache when I am out playing. 
 I hope some more of you have a go at making one. Thanks to all of you again for telling me about your personal experiences in building Satellite antenna's for Amateur Radio. I look forward to hearing more about your projects and I hope to hear you coming through loud and clear via the "birds". Good luck and best 73
posted by Simon Davison @ 6:11 pm   6 comments
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Visit To The Northern Cross Radio Rally
The Northern Cross Radio Rally took place earlier today and saw myself and Louise M3TLL  check out it's new venue at Ossett School near Wakefield. The new venue took a bit of finding and gave both Louise and myself a good chuckle when the guys operating the talk in frequency had difficulties in directing us in. Once we found our own way we were able to advise them and other rally travelling hams how to get there h.i

The Venue Ossett School


Once we ventured inside there were one or two interesting seller's with the usual plugs and fittings
This vendor got it right, very well organised in bags of 10, I bought £10 worth of PL259 plugs. It should keep me quiet for a week or two.
Tempting but I must have enough antenna's (according to the YL).
Some good reading courtesy of the RSGB book stand.

A nice selection of mobile antenna.
Junk Sale? Is there such a thing when it comes to radio equipment?
Myself 2E0HTS in shopping mode.
Other Yorkshire Hams on the hunt for a bargain.
The W.A.B (Worked All Britain) Stand run by Darren G0BWB & Brian G0BFJ. Great to meet you guys after hearing you on the W.A.B Net.

The W.A.B Stand
In fact I was so impressed I decided to buy a new book number from the new series that has recently started. The new book number I now have is 18433. My old series book number is 16382 so hope to work on a W.A.B frequency in the near future. More amazing the picture shows me signing and parting with Cash, not very Yorkshire like h.i.
Brian - G0BFJ and myself 2E0HTS - Simon.

Yes it is a really silly grin! But £12.00 for a discone antenna would probably do the same grin on any Hams face. Also a bag of W.A.B goodies and other bits. 
So a fun day had by all and 3 W.A.B square entries already in the new W.A.B book.  73 good DX and thanks to Louise M3TLL for the photo taking and all of the support as usual.
posted by Simon Davison @ 6:49 pm   0 comments
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
The Launch of 2E0HTS eQSL Gallery

The last week has made me go bog eyed as I have been busy creating a new blog where I can display all of my received eQSL cards from Hams/SWLs from all over the globe. After uploading almost 500 eQSL card images you could imagine the relief of finally being able to switch on the radio's and take a well deserved break from my recently purchased 22" HD flat screen monitor. Yes the old eyes are definitely in need of a night off so hope you can spare me a couple of minutes to take a browse over some of the eQSL images I spent all week uploading. At least now that the new blog is up and running it will be quick, easy and painless to add any future received eQSL cards!

Thanks for looking and what do you think so far? 2E0HTS eQSL Gallery

Simon - 2E0HTS (the one with the red eyes!)
posted by Simon Davison @ 8:25 pm   3 comments
Monday, February 02, 2009
Latest Weather FAX Images Received from Northwood Region VI
Today the U.K is battling with the inclement weather and as many of the nation face heavy down pours of snow, I decided to take a look myself to try determine what we could be expecting our glorious British weather to bring us.

As usual I fired up the radio equipment and computer which I regularly use to receive images from Earth orbiting weather monitoring NOAA satellites.
I also like to receive weather faxes from Northwood, which show detailed pictures of changeable weather fronts intended for Ships/sea bearing vessels within our ocean - region 6 (Europe). click on any image to enlarge
Northwood's facsimile transmissions are scheduled throughout the day every day and include:

Fronts Centres Winds.
Surface Analysis.
Gale Summary.
Milli Bar (MB) Height/Thickness.
Surface Prognosis.
Signal Wind Areas.

Frequencies used to receive the Fax transmissions are: 11.084.600 USB, 8.038.100 USB, 4.608.100 USB, & 2.616.600. USB. (HF - LF).

Software: Radio Com 5.2 or any Fax decoding software.

Radio and antenna used: Yaesu FT-847 and random length of wire.

Here is the Decoder (Radio Com 5.2) used on my computer.
Here you can see the program's vast choice of pre-programmed receiving/decoding options.
This is the first image received showing Surface Prog.
Image no 2 Surface Prog
Image 3 Surface Prog ( You can compare the extent of movement of the weather front from Image 1 to 3 ).
This Image Shows Thickness and Potential Height. (Tomorrow Feb 3rd, Prediction)
650 Milli Bar Wind prediction (Feb 3rd, Tomorrow)
I will let you decide for yourself tomorrow's WX, Good Luck
and look out for more Weather (WX) images/Fax in the up and coming future.
Till then keep warm and tnx for passing by!
posted by Simon Davison @ 8:28 pm   2 comments
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