Showing posts from February, 2012

Day 29 February QSO Challenge

My 29th QSO - final Challenge was succeeded as I made a QSO tonight on 14.196MHz. I ended the challenge by working "Cubical Quad Master" Mike-W2YP at 21.13 utc on the 20m band. As usual Mike-W2YP was cracking through at 5/9+25dB to my FT-1000MKV and CW80 antenna, my report back from Mike was 5/9+15dB. It was a real pleasure to catch up with Mike as it had been a while since our last QSO and Mike always has time to exchange a few enjoyable overs rather than just a signal report. Mike is located in New Rochelle, New York State, locator FN30CX. The total distance of the W2YP Station is 3328 Miles away from my location hear in Yorkshire (IO93CU). I have certainly enjoyed this challenge of making at least one QSO a day. Louise-M3TLL(My YL) came up with the idea and I am pleased to have accomplished the challenge with success as well as gaining some satisfaction out of it all. There could be a celebration cake on the dinner table tomorrow h.i. The actual idea it would be a

Day 28 February QSO Challenge

My challenge for today was also a brand new experience for me as I have never tried to work anyone on the 30M band before.  I tuned my FT-1000MKV to 10.141MHz and found quite a few stations coming in well on PSK31 with my Hustler vertical in line. Earlier in the QSO challenge, PE4BAS had commented in a previous post where I had used PSK31 Deluxe to make a QSO. Bas recommended DM780, so I thought I would give it a go on 30M.  I made my first ever 30M QSO successfully running just 20W at 20.19 utc, when I worked Andy - UW8SM from The Ukraine. The signal reports were good, 599 both ways. Our QSO using DM780 can be seen in the screen shot below. It will take a bit of time to familiarise myself with the program but I shall give it a good trying out! 73 & see you tomorrow for the Grand Finale of the February QSO Challenge.

Day 27 February QSO Challenge

I made my first QSO of today at 21.18 utc on 3.771MHz where I worked Patrick operating special event station EI80IRTS . EI80IRTS celebrates the 80th anniversary of the founding of The Irish Radio Transmitters Society (IRTS) . Patrick was working a huge pile up and putting out a very impressive 5/9 +40dB signal when I snook my call sign in amongst the many stations through to EI80IRTS. I received a 5/9 +20dB signal report back as well as some information about the IRTS up and coming CQIR International Radio Contest taking place on March the 17th from 12.00 utc. Check out more information about the station EI80IRTS including the EI80IRTS award via Today's QSO challenge has been completed, the equipment I used was: FT-1000MKV and CW80 Antenna. 73

Day 26 February QSO Challenge

Earlier today I made some QSO's via SAUDISAT 1C SO-50. I used my FT-847, G-5500 controller and dual Satellite beams to work F0FIG at 10.44 utc this morning. During a fast set of overs we exchanged locators and signal reports via the satellite. F0FIG - Marcel from JO1OJE was coming in with a 5/9 signal during the pass amongst quite a lot of QRM from other ops also trying to get in to the bird. F0FIG came back to me over the QRM where I received a 5/9 report back from Marcel - F0FIG. I went on to work a couple more stations before the SO-50 satellite was out of range. Todays Challenge completed with plenty of time left to check the HF bands and continue playing some Ham radio. 73

Day 25 February QSO Challenge

As I continue completing at least one QSO every day to qualify for the challenge, I made today's QSO on 14.210MHz whilst working Brian - KB2UZY at around 19.33 utc this evening. Brian is located 3228 miles away in Springfield Massachusetts, locator FN32QC. KB2UZY was working a pile up of stations that were calling him, his signal was a very strong 5/9+20 db to my FT-1000MKV during our QSO. I received a 5/9+10 db report back from his station which can be seen pictured below. Brian - KB2UZY pictured above was using an FT-1000D from YAESU and running 500 watts from his Kenwood TL922A amplifier into his hy-gain TH11DX antenna mounted 50 feet above the ground. I was running my vertical ground mounted Hustler 6BTV with radials. Only 4 more days left before my computer keyboard gets a rest. 73

Day 24 February QSO Challenge

I completed today's QSO challenge as set by my YL M3TLL - Louise by working VE3YJ at 1905 utc on 14.195MHz. VE3YJ - Rocco was calling CQ DX when I came across his very respectable 5/9 signal. I gave a call back to Rocco where I received a 5/3 report back during a nice conversion about our equipment as well as mentioning that we had worked each other on 40m and 17m in the past. I was pleased with my 5/3 report and enjoyed the QSO with Rocco as I got to test out both of my HF antennas, my CW80- Carolina Windom and Hustler 6BTV with radials. The test this evening provided me with matching signal reports both on transmit and receive, the radials on my Hustler vertical seem to have made a noticeable improvement. I was using 50w from my FT1000 MKV, Rocco - VE3YJ was running 1KW into his very nice 4 Element Yagi as seen pictured above. Another fine QSO challenge completed at a total distance between our two stations of 3460 miles to Guelph, Ontario. Locator EN93UN.

Day 23 February QSO Challenge

As the QSO challenge continues into the final week I decided I would try and make some QSO's up on the VHF bands. I opened up my Satscape software to see if any satellites were in range and powered up my FT-847 Earth Station just in time to work into VO-52. I found myself coming in well on the satellites downlink frequency 145.900MHz as I transmitted my signal via uplink on 435.250MHz. At 19.43 utc I called "CQ SAT" and was soon making QSO with OH5LK - Jussi from Finland, grid locator square KP30ON. OH5LK was putting a nice signal into the "bird" and coming back to my station at 5/9. I also received the same report back from OH5LK - Jussi. VO-52 is in orbit at an altitude of 391 miles above the earth and puts out a very good footprint. I went on to work OM5CM - Palo in JN98DF Slovakia, also on the same pass which lasted around 10 minutes before heading beyond my horizon and out of range of my satellite array. My FT-847 is a very pleasing rig to operate th

Day 22 February QSO Challenge

Today's challenge QSO was made on 18.147MHz at 20.36 utc. The HF bands were in reasonable shape at my end, I had heard Japan on 40m and some strong US stations coming in well on 20m. On 17m I heard a big signal working a steady pile up of stations which turned out to be a DX station located 4167 miles away on the Island of Martinique, IOTA, NA-107 in The West Indies. The station I was hearing with a 5/9 signal was FM1FV - Manuel, locator FK94LO. I tried calling FM1FV for a good 20 minutes before my signal made it through the big guns that were also calling. Finally patience and determination paid off and I eventually broke through the pile up managing a good QSO with a couple of overs. I received a 5/9 signal report back from the station of FM1FV- Manuel. During the QSO I used my Carolina Windom 80m - 10m wire Antenna and YAESU FT-1000MP MARK-V Transceiver. 73 enjoy the band conditions!

Day 21 February QSO Challenge

I powered up my shack this evening wondering what signals I would be able to hear on HF as my initial tune around 20m - 10m showed that band conditions would probably be more favourable down on 40m. On 40m, I could hear quite a few stations coming in when I came across special event station HF35APAS -  Arctowski Antarctic Award part of the Worldwide Antarctic Program . HF35APAS - Janusz was working quite a nice little pile up down on 7.153.5 MHz, his signal was 5/9 solid copy. I called him using my Windom antenna and FT-1000MK-V  where I received a 5/9 report back at 20.16 utc. HF35APAS is located in JO90NK with a total distance of 914 miles from my station. Check out Janusz on QRZ for more information about the HF35APAS station. Another completed challenge in the log and only 8 more days left to air my call sign each day to successfully complete the February QSO challenge. 

Day 20 February QSO Challenge

My FT-100/Maldol Combo(mobile station) has been making some nice RF today as I worked /mobile into Belarus, Italy, Finland and Spain at various times of the day. My QSO challenge for today has to be the station I worked from Spain - EA2CCG / Mobile - Joaquin on the 20m band. EA2CCG - Joaquin was operating from his mobile station calling CQ when I heard him from my mobile station. His signal was coming in well, at around 19.30 utc I gave him a call and managed a nice QSO with Joaquin (mobile to mobile). EA2CCG/M was operating on 14.242.5MHz from Pamplona in N.Spain. The signal reports exchanged by us both was 5/7 - 5/8 with a bit of QSB thrown in making us both work that little bit harder. It was great to work another mobile operator as well as fellow HAM RADIO Blogger where you can find more information about his station.  73

Day 19 February QSO Challenge

I made a few QSOs today on both the HF and VHF bands whilst operating from my shack. The QSO I am using for today's challenge was made down on 40m where I worked Thinking Day On The Air special event station GB0GGR at 10.17 utc on 40m. GB0GGR - Girl Guiding Renfrewshire was on the air for TDA and during our QSO was being operated by Kai (home call MM1AUF). GB0GGR was coming in well from IO75QU in Scotland with a big signal of 5/9+20. I received a 5/9 report back, the total distance between our two stations is 180 miles. The February QSO challenge is going well for me as I now enter the count down for the final 10 days of completing a QSO every day and logging it here. Thanks for keeping up with me and see you tomorrow.

Day 18 February QSO Challenge

Once again I have been working hard on our kitchen/diner area all day installing the rest of the floor which is now completed. I just have the finishing touches to do and then it will be ticked off the list of home improvements and I can get back to family life and ham radio. I had to collect some more supplies earlier this evening and found myself back in the vehicle with my trusty YAESU FT-100 Maldol combo. On the way in to my local City - Bradford, I listened to EA6AM working stations that were calling him on the 20m band. I waited for the right timing and called out my call sign /mobile, EA6AM - Vicente heard me at 5/6 to 5/7 in JM29DV which is Mahon on Menorca Island (IOTA EU-004). Our QSO took place at 17.42 utc on 14.233 MHz, EA6AM was 5/9+20 at my end with a distance of around 1006 miles or thereabouts between his station and my mobile. Another days QSO challenge complete and logged here for M3TLL - Louise to check and see I am still competing for the trophy!

Day 17 February QSO Challenge

Today has been another busy day and things are going well as I continue working on the kitchen project. I had to collect some more supplies from the local hardware store so decided I would try and make a QSO at the same time while out in the mobile. I flicked through the 20m band while heading over the moor top where I found a massive signal coming in on 14.215MHz. At 19.07utc I called HTS/m where I was received by CT7ACG - Colin who was coming through 5/9+60db. CT7ACG - Colin's report back to me was 5/9, our QSO lasted for 7 minutes and during it I found out Colin originated from Yorkshire and is now enjoying living in the Algarve in Portugal. CT7ACG Locator IM57VF,  total distance between our stations is 1190 miles. Today's challenge has been completed with a very nice QSO using my FT-100 and Maldol HFC20 mobile antenna whilst on the move. 73

Day 16 February QSO Challenge

Despite being up to my eyeballs in kitchen fitting I got some spare moments to switch on my FT-1000 and work IQ3TN on 3.749MHz at 21.49 utc. IQ3TN is the Trento Italian Radio Club Station and was being operated by Nicola who was 5/9+ and sounding well. I received a 5/9 report during our QSO, I was using my windom antenna to work Nicola in JN56NA which is 786.6 miles away. I left IQ3TN working lots of other stations that were calling him there is still plenty of work back in the kitchen for me to do so just a quickie. Tonight's QSO completes today's challenge. 73 see you tommorow

Day 15 February QSO Challenge

My QSO challenge is going well however today I have been busy in the kitchen, well what's left of it. I am  working hard with Louise as we are installing a new one. You can imagine the mess and chaos but nevertheless I still completed today's challenge and worked across the pond via the AO-7 SAT . At 19.33 with my satellite beams pointing upwards at only 9º degree above my horizon I got into the bird as it passed by with a low elevation somewhere half way between the UK and USA. I called CQ a couple of times to be answered by K8TL - Thomas from Ohio, locator EM89CV. Followed by KB1PVH - Dave in Massachusetts, locator - FN42CD K8TL station is located at a total distance of 5767 miles away from my QTH and KB1PVH is 3195 miles away from me. My challenge for today carried out on VHF via AO-7 using my FT-847. Now back to the kitchen fitting! 73

Day 14 February QSO Challenge

Tonight I spent a couple of hours down on the 40m band as I called CQ PSK31 on 7.038MHz. I called longer than usual before I could complete my fourteenth QSO of the challenge. After a while I was answered and I made my first QSO of the day. The first station that I worked tonight on 40m PSK31 was Jordi - EB3JT at 21.52 utc (See below the QSO with reports and QTH information). Our two stations are located 871 miles apart and when I looked Jordi - EB3JT up on, I noticed he had a nice looking station.  I also found out that Jordi was also a Satellite chaser. Perhaps I will work him again on VHF via an amateur satellite. In the meantime its another great QSO in the February challenge log. Below is a screen shot of the QSO decoded using PSK31 Deluxe. I Copied the text from the PSK31 Deluxe window and pasted it here for anyone who might be interested! RX> 2Ø:33:26 UTC TX> 21:5Ø:48 UTC CQ CQ CQ de 2EØHTS 2EØHTS 2EØHTS CQ CQ CQ de 2EØHTS 2EØHTS 2EØHTS

Day 13 February QSO Challenge

My thirteenth challenge QSO was made this evening at 21.23 utc as I worked Nikolaj - UR5BFX via the SO-50 Satellite. I have worked Nikolaj - UR5BFX from KN29TN (The Ukraine) many times but not for quite a while, so it was a real pleasure to hear him coming in 5/5 loud and clear via the Sat. I received a 5/5 report back and went on to work a next station before loosing the "bird" which happened to be SP5XSD. The total distance between UR5BFX and my station is 1203 miles. The SO-50 Sat is orbiting at an altitude of 412 miles above Earth. That's another nice QSO in the log and another completed challenge for the day!

Day 12 February QSO Challenge

Every Sunday morning since I can remember I always make the effort to listen to the local  RSGB News broadcast , which transmits from 9.30 local time on 145.525MHz FM. This months GB2RS News is read out by G4KQJ - Bill, who is located about 10 miles away from me in a town called Brighouse. After the news Bill - G4KQJ moves down frequency to 145.725MHz and invites stations to call him with any reports or comments. My February QSO challenge Day 12 was completed by working Bill - G4KQJ, who was 5/9 on 145.475MHz at 10.02 utc. I was also 5/9 at his end and we had a nice QSO with quite a few overs exchanged.

Day 11 February QSO Challenge

Earlier today I was working portable from an alternative location where I was demonstrating amateur radio to three students. I took my FT-857, FT-817, my home brew tripod, 80m - 15m - Hustler mono band antennas, as well as my ARROW MKII Sat yagis and hand held transceivers. I demonstrated the equipment to the students on the HF bands and then moved up to 2 meters FM hoping to make an actual QSO. At around 13.15 utc I put a call through a local repeater - GB3TP  (145.125MHz input 145.725MHz output, 82.5 CTSS) and was pleasantly surprised to work three stations that all came back to my call. The three Stations were very familiar to myself  and each other, I knew all three in person and it was an absolute pleasure to make my challenge QSO with M1PAC - Phil (Keighley, West Yorkshire). I also worked  M0DIT - Josh (Keighley, West Yorkshire) and 2E0NTT - Richard (Skipton, North Yorkshire). The GB3TP repeater is located high up on the local Moor Top and has an excellent footprint that

Day 10 February QSO Challenge

I fired up the shack later than usual due to a busy evening. I heard a few Contest/Club Stations warming up their equipment for this weekends Dutch PAAC Contest . I carried out my usual tune around the HF bands to find some big signals coming in well especially on the 40M band. I tried busting a pile up that KK1KW was creating on 7.128MHz for a good 30 minuets without success, the operator - Fred pulled the plug before I was heard. I continued to listen around 40M as there was plenty of activity, on 7.096MHz I heard Contest Station CN3A located in Safi, Morocco booming in at 5/9 +. At 21.47 utc, I called a couple of times and managed to penetrate another pile up to work CN3A with a 5/9 report completing today's QSO challenge! The Total  distance between our stations is 1565 miles short path. It will be interesting to find out how many miles I end up covering in the end.  I shall add up the total mileage of every completed QSO challenge, if I manage the whole of February

Day 9 February QSO Challenge

Day 9 of the QSO challenge was completed whilst operating down on the 80m band (3.583MHz). This portion of the band is used by stations operating PSK31 and is always busy with plenty of activity to choose from.   I watched my P.C screen whist running the PSK31 Deluxe Super Browser where I  then made a nice QSO with ON5UN - Erwin. During our QSO I was using 30W, FT-1000, RIGblaster plus and C.W antenna. The software I use for PSK31 is PSK Deluxe. ON5UN was at a total distance of 305 miles away from my station. Our QSO can be seen below with the time and station information. The actual PSK31 QSO RX> 21:34:48 UTC CQ CQ de ON5UN ON5UNCQ CQ de ON5UN ON5UNCQ CQ de ON5UN ON5UNPSE K oe TX> 21:35:11 UTC ON5UN ON5UN de 2EØHTS 2EØHTS RX> 21:35:23 UTC p- o***2EØHTS de ON5UNHI DEAR SimonUR RST 599 599MY NAME ERWIN ERWIN MY QTH LOCHRISTI LOCHRISTI LOC JO11WC JO11WCHOW COPY? BTU 2EØHTS DE teen5UN PSE KN tet nI t r .L s ia TX> 21:36:29 UTC ON5UN ON5UN de 2EØHTS 2EØHTS

Day 8 February QSO Challenge

After a busy day I finally fired up my shack and began listening up and down the bands to see what I could hear and possibly work. I spent an hour or so checking out the HF bands to find most of the bands to be closed down for the day. I checked out the lower bands where I heard a Japanese station coming in with a weak signal working a huge pile up down on 80m. Apart from that nothing much of great interest was going on. At 22.15 utc I had my Satellite antennas beaming a 315º and my Ft-847 was on standby for LEO SAT Saudi Oscar 50 -  SO-50  , when I heard CT2GOY - Jose. CT2GOY was coming in well at 5/9 when I gave him a call via the SO-50 Satellite. We made our QSO at 22.21 utc where I received a 5/7 signal report back from locator IM58KP. We worked each other via the SO-50 Satellite cross band repeater orbiting Earth at an altitude of 405 miles. Our QSO was made using a 145.850MHz uplink and  436.795MHz  +/-  downlink from the Space craft. The distance apart between our two gr

Day 7 February QSO Challenge

Today's QSO was with GM4PPT - Dick from Ayrshire Scotland. GM4PPT is what I consider as a radio pal as I have worked Dick many times from my other shack over the years with lots of great rag chewing taking place on 144 SSB. I worked GM4PPT at 20.52 utc on 144.336MHz (2 Meter band) during tonight's RSGB 144MHz UKAC . Dick - GM4PPT was a 5/1 signal at my end (IO93CU). I received a 5/2 signal report and serial no back from GM4PPT in IO74SK. For the Day 7 February QSO challenge, I was using my YAESU FT-847 with 50W into my 5 Element Cushcraft Yagi. GM4PPT runs an Icom IC910X into 2 x 12 Element M2 stacked Yagis and a Dressler D200s Amplifier. The total distance between our stations is 154 miles which on 144MHz ticks the box that says DX. 73

Day 6 February QSO Challenge

Today's challenge was the most difficult so far. I tried to make some QSO's via VO-52 and SO-50 without any success so I spent some time listening around 20m and 40m in the hope of hearing an interesting or possible DX station to try and work. Conditions were not so good but eventually I did find VE2CAQ coming in loud and clear up on the 20m band. VE2CAQ was operating very well and managed to get through many of the stations that were calling him. I tried calling for about 15 minutes when I got lucky and finally punched through the pile up. VE2CAQ - Chris was 5/9 at my end and he said I was coming in the same 5/9 signal with good audio from my Heil Goldline GM5 base Mic. Our QSO took place at 20.04 utc on 14.265MHz. My computer log notified me that I had worked Chris back in March 2006 on the same band Another completed challenge for Day 6 and an opportunity to see the shack and antenna array of VE2CAQ at a total DX Distance of 3057 miles short path to Sherbrooke, Queb

Day 5 February QSO Challenge

The QSO challenge for Day 5 was made on the 80M band at 20.11 utc where I worked DO1HEP - Hermann operating SSTV on 3.730 MHz. I was sending some slow scan CQ Calls when Hermann - DO1HEP received my signal and came back with some of his own slow scan TV images as seen below. DO1HEP - Hermann was using Yaesu FT-897, 100W into a long wire antenna. I was using 25W from my FT-1000 with a RIGBlaster plus interface and Mmsstv software into my Windom antenna. I don't operate SSTV as much as I would like to and enjoyed making this QSO. Our stations are at a total distance of 515.6 miles apart, I am pleased with my completed challenge of the day. 73

Day 4 February QSO Challenge

I was up early as today the College I work at had morning "Taster" sessions for local schools booked in. I teach welding and fabrication and was required to be present and able to deliver a couple of sessions to 20 students. On my journey in I had my FT-100 mobile transceiver switched on to the 20M band where I stumbled across Henk - VK2GWK . VK2GWK was working many stations as I drove on my journey listening on 14.173 MHz, I was hearing Henk at a signal of 5/5 - 5/8 through my mono band Maldol 20M antenna. VK2GWK heard me calling /mobile and came back with a 4/4 report for me at around 08.13 utc, I gave a 5/8 report back. Henk also remembered our previous QSO up on 15m from my shack and was pleased we could do it again on a different band and from my mobile at a  total distance of 10500 miles short path or possibly 14357 miles long path. Either way another fantastic challenge for day 4 completed. VK2GWK Station comprises of  Yaesu FT 2000, Emtron Linear

Day 3 February QSO Challenge

It was nice to leave work in the day light as Friday is a slightly earlier finish time. When I arrived home a checked the bands to see which were open where I heard stations on 10M, 12M, and 15M. Despite all of the interesting activity I was hearing, I thought I would have a listen down on 40m as well. I tuned around and found a nice pile up on 7.170 MHz where I received a big signal coming out of Moscow. R2DA - Valery was booming in to my Ft-1000 with a signal strength of S9+20 with very good audio. I waited for the right gap to appear in the pile up and put one call out which was heard at R2DA - Valery's station at 16.28 utc. My report back from Valery was 5/9 and I managed to find out that R2DA was running a 4 element yagi, 40m above the ground. It was doing a fine job for him, I was using my Carolina Windom antenna. Total distance apart short path 1571 Miles. This is fun! Day 3 challenge complete, See you tomorrow and have a nice weekend! 73

Day 2 February QSO Challenge

Tonight's challenge has been met!  I caught a nice DX station coming in well on the 15M band earlier this evening. I am pleased to report that Day 2 see's AI0L - Mark from Northern Colorado entering my February log. I worked AI0L - Mark at 17.34 utc on 21.252 MHz, I heard AI0L 5/9 solid copy with a 5/6 report back. Mark was running an ICOM IC-756 Pro 2, with 400 watts into 4 element stepper antenna. He was sounding great at my end with a DX distance of 4482.6 miles between our shacks. I am enjoying the February QSO Challenge as set by M3TLL - Louise, very much. Its working out pretty well so far with a couple of nice contacts in my log, I wonder what tomorrow will bring? 73

Day 1 February QSO Challenge

I accepted the challenge set by Louise without too much persuasion and I am pleased to report my first QSO of February. The QSO took place today at 18.01 utc on the 15M Band where I managed to catch Bill - VY2LI located on Prince Edward Island (IOTA NA-029). Bill was 5/5 with QSB to my FT-1000 and Carolina Windom antenna, I was given a 5/3 report also with QSB back from VY2LI - Bills station. So I guess I have got off to a nice start working a total distance of 2699.5 Miles short path for my 1st of many February QSOs. I was also pleased with an opportunity to work on 15M catching the bands last minutes before it closed down. I have read the comments from Bas - PE4BAS and Paul - M0PCZ and hope we bump into each other one evening somewhere on HF, it would be very nice indeed! I hope to succeed in this terrible challenge Louise has ordered hi hi I wonder what the prize will be ;-) 73 for now, I shall be back  tomorrow with hopefully another nice call sign in the log, until then t