Date   

Re: 6m Es opening - 2300Z

John Klem
 

From what I could see, almost everyone on FT-8 was running 1.8/1.9.  Because I couldn't decode them with 2.0, which I switched to a couple of weeks ago...to keep up with the meteor scatter folks, who seem to be early adopters.  I saw one lone (non-local) station running 2.0, who was sending something like "CQ v2.0 77-bit", and I could actually decode.  I didn't see any replies.

I will be happy when I don't have to uninstall/install software just to switch modes.

I listened for awhile on 50.090 (is that really a CW calling frequency?) - nothing heard.

John AA5PR

On 12/4/2018 7:51 PM, WB2FKO wrote:
Was everybody on FT8?  If so, were there decode incompatibility problems with people using versions 1.9 and 2.0? 
WB2FKO

On Dec 4, 2018, at 5:13 PM, Ed <n5jeh@...> wrote:

Not a very strong opening down here in DM65. But working a few. Take any opening in late fall.

 

Ed N5JEH

 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

 

From: Keith Morehouse
Sent: Tuesday, December 4, 2018 4:18 PM
To: nmvhf@groups.io
Subject: [nmvhf] 6m Es opening - 2300Z

 

Strong Es opening from DM58 to mid EM6/7/8 now.

1st good winter Es opening heard here this season

 

-W9RM


Keith J Morehouse
Managing Partner
Calmesa Partners G.P.
Olathe, CO

 

<C0E03DB3DF9D430386CC63E8BC40D205.png>


Re: 6m Es opening - 2300Z

Alan Shapiro
 

I worked 3 stations on SSB (50.125) and one on CW (50.099).
NM5S

On 12/4/2018 7:51 PM, WB2FKO wrote:
Was everybody on FT8?  If so, were there decode incompatibility problems with people using versions 1.9 and 2.0?
WB2FKO


Re: 6m Es opening - 2300Z

Mike WB2FKO
 

Was everybody on FT8?  If so, were there decode incompatibility problems with people using versions 1.9 and 2.0? 
WB2FKO

On Dec 4, 2018, at 5:13 PM, Ed <n5jeh@...> wrote:

Not a very strong opening down here in DM65. But working a few. Take any opening in late fall.

 

Ed N5JEH

 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

 

From: Keith Morehouse
Sent: Tuesday, December 4, 2018 4:18 PM
To: nmvhf@groups.io
Subject: [nmvhf] 6m Es opening - 2300Z

 

Strong Es opening from DM58 to mid EM6/7/8 now.

1st good winter Es opening heard here this season

 

-W9RM


Keith J Morehouse
Managing Partner
Calmesa Partners G.P.
Olathe, CO

 

<C0E03DB3DF9D430386CC63E8BC40D205.png>


Re: 6m Es opening - 2300Z

Ed
 

Not a very strong opening down here in DM65. But working a few. Take any opening in late fall.

 

Ed N5JEH

 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

 

From: Keith Morehouse
Sent: Tuesday, December 4, 2018 4:18 PM
To: nmvhf@groups.io
Subject: [nmvhf] 6m Es opening - 2300Z

 

Strong Es opening from DM58 to mid EM6/7/8 now.

1st good winter Es opening heard here this season

 

-W9RM


Keith J Morehouse
Managing Partner
Calmesa Partners G.P.
Olathe, CO

 


6m Es opening - 2300Z

Keith Morehouse
 

Strong Es opening from DM58 to mid EM6/7/8 now.
1st good winter Es opening heard here this season

-W9RM

Keith J Morehouse
Managing Partner
Calmesa Partners G.P.
Olathe, CO


2nd VHF Super Confernece: Call for Papers/Presentations #vhf #uhf #antenna

Robin Midgett <K4IDC@...>
 

Call for Papers and Presentations for the second Super VHF Conference, April 26-28, 2019, in Sterling, VA, near Washington, DC.  

The the second Super VHF Conference is jointly sponsored by Packrats, NEWS Group, and SVHFS, and Hosted by the Grid Pirates Contest Group and Directive Systems and Engineering


details at http://vhfsuperconference.com/


Presentations or papers are welcome on VHF, UHF, microwaves, and higher.  All aspects welcome, technical and non-technical - operating, contesting, homebrewing, roving, software, EME, surplus, antennas, test equipment, amplifiers, SDR, 47 GHz superregen, whatever.  Your winter project might be a good candidate - take some pictures.


N2CEI and W1GHZ will be coordinating the proceedings book and CD.


submissions and questions to:

conferencepapers@...


New Mexico TechFest -- Call for Presentations

Brian Mileshosky
 

Greetings —

The fifth annual New Mexico TechFest, an ARRL-sanctioned operating specialty event organized by Rocky Mountain Ham Radio - New Mexico, will take place Saturday, February 23, 2019.  TechFest features a day of quality presentations and demonstrations provided by some of New Mexico and Colorado’s leading technical hams on a variety of emerging and relevant topics within amateur radio.  The event’s purpose is to help expand attendees’ technical knowledge, facilitate collaboration, and encourage the discussion of new ideas with one another.

TechFest is open to all interested hams and will occur at the New Mexico Veterans’ Memorial Event Center located at 1100 Louisiana Blvd SE, Albuquerque, NM 87108.  Admission is $10.  Online registration will open the week of January 6, when the event’s presentation lineup is announced.

Presentation-related prizes will be drawn throughout the event. Refreshments including coffee, water, and light snacks will be available. Optional lunch, catered by local small business, will be available at an additional cost.

*** CALL FOR TECHFEST PRESENTATIONS, POSTERBOARDS, AND DEMONSTRATIONS *** The New Mexico TechFest seeks presentations, posterboards, and demos on emerging and relevant amateur radio technical topics, techniques, and applications.   If you’ve been working on a special project, are researching a technical topic, or have discovered or adopted a technology or technique that you’re applying within amateur radio, TechFest is a great venue to share your knowledge with the amateur radio community in a casual and friendly environment.  Presentations will generally be 50 minutes in total length.  Shorter posterboard talks and demos will also occur throughout the day.  AC-powered tables will be provided to facilitate presentations and demos.  Hams interested in providing a presentation, posterboard, or demonstration are asked to submit a summary/abstract of their proposed topic for consideration by January 1st. Visit the New Mexico TechFest website for submission details and key dates.

Additional details about the New Mexico TechFest, for both attendees and potential presenters, can be found at http://www.rmham.org/wordpress/new-mexico-techfest  A printable event flyer for posting on ham listserves, your club’s website, or your club’s newsletter is attached.

We hope to see you at TechFest 2019.

73,
Brian N5ZGT



Damage to LMR-type coax - a lesson to remember

Keith Morehouse
 

This is certainly not a new discovery, but it's good to re-visit certain things once in a while.  One of the problems with using any foamed or micro-porous Teflon dielectric coax cable (like LMR and other modern, stiff, low-loss cable) is the hazard of having the center conductor push through the relatively soft dielectric when under temperature extremes or with rough handling.  Here is an example.

I have numerous 20' lengths of LMR-400 cable, terminated with crimp-on N connectors that were commercially manufactured.  You used to be able to get these things surplus on EBay, complete with test report and sealed in plastic for $10-15.  They were good for jumpers and anything else that didn't move too much.  If you had too much radial motion, the connectors would break off after a while.  A couple weeks ago, after sorting through a jumble of RF cables used for various things (roving, portable op's, ect), I came across one 20 foot LMR-400 unit that had a loose crimp connector.  I went ahead and cut off the old connector and replaced it with a nice, new-out-of-the-bag Andrew two-piece compression design and tossed it aside for test.  This morning, I got around to testing it (no use having a network analyzer siting on the test bench if you don't use it to test things...) and found it had God-awful return loss (bad VSWR).  Of course, I figured the connector had been installed improperly, but after disassembly, the connector looked fine.  Further testing showed no change to the return loss when actively pushing and pulling on the partially disassembled end.  Hmmm - maybe it's the OTHER end, so I punched up the TDR routine on the analyzer to try and find the fault.  Long story short, the fault ended up being about 400mm BEHIND the connector I replaced.  You can see why in this picture.

IMG_20181107_141517465.jpg

You can see that the center conductor has moved almost an entire diameter into the dielectric, but was not yet shorting.  The interesting part is there was NO OBVIOUS damage to the coax outer cover - no crimp marks or crush marks - only a few scratches.  I assume it was smashed under some large weight or run over by a vehicle or, maybe stepped on or subjected to less-then-minimum bend radius after laying in the hot desert sun.  Sometimes, you can see a mark from a zip-tie on the cable, but not here.  Whatever it was, the return loss was approaching 5 dB several places between 30 and 1500 MHz (and greater then 20 dB in the 432 MHz band).

Cutting off 18" and re-attaching the same connector gave me a cable assembly with >25 dB return loss through 1500 MHz, with insertion loss of approx 0.2 dB at 50 MHz and 0.5 dB at 432.  The take-away from this lesson is to always remember how unforgiving some high-performance, low loss RF cables can be when abused - even if there is no sign.  Pretty much the only way to track down this type of fault is with TDR techniques.  BTW, differentiating between the reference plane and the internal conductor attachment point of an N connector using a HP network analyzer is not a problem - there's plenty of room in there.

-W9RM

Keith J Morehouse
Managing Partner
Calmesa Partners G.P.
Olathe, CO


Re: 2 meter transverter up for grabs...

redarlington
 

It's all yours, Erik.     We just have to figure out how to get it to you.  Email me off list and we'll make arrangements.

-Bob

On Tue, Oct 23, 2018 at 10:47 PM Erik Nelson <erik.nels0n99@...> wrote:
Bob, 

If it's not spoken for I'm interested.

 73,
  - Erik, KE5ZBG

On Tue, Oct 23, 2018, 14:54 redarlington <rdarlington@...> wrote:
Hi guys,

I have a 2 meter transverter (28MHz IF) up for grabs if anybody needs one.  It's the current offering from transverters-store.com with the internal attenuator board.   Power cable with Anderson power pole attached.  Factory assembled.    And best of all, free.    I just installed an internal 2 meter module in my rig so it's surplus to my needs.

Pickup in Los Alamos or we can meet up sometime in Santa Fe.  Just let me know and we'll go from there.

Bob - N3XKB


Re: 2 meter transverter up for grabs...

Erik Nelson
 

Bob, 

If it's not spoken for I'm interested.

 73,
  - Erik, KE5ZBG

On Tue, Oct 23, 2018, 14:54 redarlington <rdarlington@...> wrote:
Hi guys,

I have a 2 meter transverter (28MHz IF) up for grabs if anybody needs one.  It's the current offering from transverters-store.com with the internal attenuator board.   Power cable with Anderson power pole attached.  Factory assembled.    And best of all, free.    I just installed an internal 2 meter module in my rig so it's surplus to my needs.

Pickup in Los Alamos or we can meet up sometime in Santa Fe.  Just let me know and we'll go from there.

Bob - N3XKB


2 meter transverter up for grabs...

redarlington
 

Hi guys,

I have a 2 meter transverter (28MHz IF) up for grabs if anybody needs one.  It's the current offering from transverters-store.com with the internal attenuator board.   Power cable with Anderson power pole attached.  Factory assembled.    And best of all, free.    I just installed an internal 2 meter module in my rig so it's surplus to my needs.

Pickup in Los Alamos or we can meet up sometime in Santa Fe.  Just let me know and we'll go from there.

Bob - N3XKB


Re: Congrats Duffey

Ed
 

Congratulations Duffey. You are so deserving of that adward.

 

Ed N5JEH

 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

 

From: KC7QY
Sent: Friday, October 19, 2018 9:50 PM
To: NM VHF
Subject: [nmvhf] Congrats Duffey

 

Duffey,

 

Congratulations on NM Ham of the Year, announced tonight at the Socorro Hamfest, NM State Convention banquet. 

 

Jim KC7QY

 


Re: Congrats Duffey

Mike WB2FKO
 

Congratulations indeed! And well deserved. Will see you in Socorro on Saturday. 
Mike WB2FKO

On Oct 19, 2018, at 8:49 PM, KC7QY <kc7qy@...> wrote:

Duffey,

Congratulations on NM Ham of the Year, announced tonight at the Socorro Hamfest, NM State Convention banquet. 
 
Jim KC7QY


Re: Congrats Duffey

Bruce Draper
 

Wow! Congrats, Duffey!


On Oct 19, 2018, at 8:52 PM, James Duffey <JamesDuffey@...> wrote:

Thanks Jim!

James Duffey KK6MC
Cedar Crest NM

On Oct 19, 2018, at 20:49, KC7QY <kc7qy@...> wrote:

Duffey,

Congratulations on NM Ham of the Year, announced tonight at the Socorro Hamfest, NM State Convention banquet. 
 
Jim KC7QY


Re: Congrats Duffey

James Duffey
 

Thanks Jim!

James Duffey KK6MC
Cedar Crest NM

On Oct 19, 2018, at 20:49, KC7QY <kc7qy@...> wrote:

Duffey,

Congratulations on NM Ham of the Year, announced tonight at the Socorro Hamfest, NM State Convention banquet. 
 
Jim KC7QY


Congrats Duffey

KC7QY
 

Duffey,

Congratulations on NM Ham of the Year, announced tonight at the Socorro Hamfest, NM State Convention banquet. 
 
Jim KC7QY


6 mtr bbq presentations

Bruce Draper
 

Some good, some not (I’m sure they were much better in person). Here they are:


73,
   Bruce 


Round table

Bruce Draper
 

Tuesday evening, 8 pm, 50.133 MHz.

We've had a good run on 6 meters this summer with lots of interesting discussions and some occasional sporadic E openings, but we'll probably be moving back to 10 or 80 meters soon. Jump in on 6 while you can.


Re: Sept VHF

John Klem
 

I'd like to offer some comments on the Sept VHF contest from the perspective of a decidedly non-big-signal operator who typically has limited time and interest for contests. Although my interest factor was unusually high on this one, it was largely compensated by the time factor.

The high point of my contest, hands down, was working W0AMT/R in DM55 on both 6 and 2 SSB, QRP-to-QRP. There's something really inspiring about someone carrying all his gear on his back, going somewhere high and remote, and sounding like he's in your back yard.

My longest haul was K2AK, DM41, in southern AZ, on 6 m FT8.

My strangest contact was with WS5N, DM54, on 6 m MSK144, following a failed attempt at a meteor scatter contact with someone else. Perhaps this is not unusual for tropo scatter, but his signal had wild swings in strength, making me wonder if perhaps aircraft scatter was involved.

Not too surprisingly, there were several strong candidates for biggest disappointment. Topping the list was somehow never hearing KK6MC/R significantly above the noise, in any of the grids he visited.

Regarding the question of 6 m band openings, I'll mention that I “saw” a couple of FT8 stations (K6EU, WA6ZTY) in CM97 and CM98 with weak but persistent signals rising to a decodable level over a period of several minutes Sunday AM. These signals did not have the characteristics I normally associate with meteor scatter – they were relatively constant over 15-second periods, for multiple periods.

And of course, I'd like to weigh in on the FT8 issue. Keith, no offense, I have no doubt you are a beacon station, but I'm not sure I've ever heard you on the air. I have heard you here, however, and really value your insights and advice. As much as anything, I think this is the kind of thing that will help stem the losses to our community.

So why does it seem that everyone is fleeing the traditional modes to FT8? Presumably, they are not all idiots. I like to start with the understanding that basically everything we are doing in ham radio is really kinda nuts. Once you acknowledge that it makes no sense to try to bounce signals off meteor trails or the moon when you could just pick up the phone instead, it's really not that hard to see that a lot of people like FT8 or the next mode to come along simply because they like it, not because it helps improve their contest score or is in any sense the best tool for some job. And that is just fine. To preserve weak-signal and traditional modes, it makes sense to do exactly what I see is already happening in NMVHF. Recruit, talk about why THIS stuff is fun, show your enthusiasm, help those who need it, and avoid the mode shaming.

John, AA5PR


Re: Sept VHF

Keith Morehouse
 

Since I went into the contest as a part-timer with the intent of working as many "locals" as I could and helping out those guys running meteor scatter, I had a lot of not-in-chair time.  Most of that time, I parked the radio on 50.313, just to use FT8 and PSK Reporter as a 'reverse beacon'.  As Mike, FKO mentioned, there was a good number of random meteor bursts throughout the whole contest, including a lot of rather dense pings most all day Sunday.  So, a lot of the things I decoded (and subsequently auto-spotted to PSK Reporter, which passes them throughout the spotting 'system') were the results of meteor scatter bursts just long enough to allow WSJT-X to actually figure out who was there.  I think a stable signal needs to be present for a little more then 5 seconds to get a FT8 decode.  This is why a weak ionoscatter signal which keeps getting interrupted by a strong meteor burst won't decode using FT8 but might be readable on CW or even SSB and would be a quick QSO using WSJT-X's MSK144 mode.

Even with this apparently good meteor activity, I still had numerous failures on MSK144 runs between 1400 & 1600Z Sunday.  On some occasions, my run partner would have a page of decodes from me, with nothing on my end over 10 minutes and then, on the next run, my new partner would decode absolutely nothing in 10 minutes, while I had a page of decodes - go figure.  This was with stations that I've worked many times before using this mode.  The regulars call it "one-way rocks" and it's something that I've seen for many years.  I'm sure the actual reason is complicated :)

Another comment on the digital debate.  As Mike said, all the WSJT modes are simply part of the toolbox.  Smart contest op's (and weak-signal op's) know when to select different tools for the job.  However, this particular change (the introduction of FT8) is being very disruptive to the amateur community as a whole, not just us VHF/UHF op's.  Entire sub-bands are emptying, their op's moving from traditional modes and frequencies to channelized digital modes.  All of a sudden, many op's have "nobody to work", and this is where the problem lies.

Some small percentage of op's just won't accept any change, others are thrown outside their comfort zones and what happens with them depends on their ability to adapt.  Many others move en masse to the 'next new thing' without giving it much thought, kind of like life in general in the early 21st Century.

Others, like me, look at this change from a technical perspective and try to preach some sanity, such as, don't stay on a 40 QSO per hour mode when the band opens during a contest, move to a 200 QSO per hour mode like SSB.  I have no complaint about FT8, outside of it being used improperly and the wisdom of compressing many KHz of spectrum users onto one frequency.

WA7JTM seems to have followed the path of either the first or second group I described.  Is he right ?  Is there a 'right' and a 'wrong' ?  Who knows - but he will be missed if he follows through.  I can name another half dozen 'big signals' around the country who have much the same opinion as him regarding WSJT-X modes.  These guys run the 'beacon stations" - the "go-to" stations - the guys Who Would Be Missed if they stopped contesting.  MOST of them fall into my group, those who don't understand why people put up with 40/hour rates and massive single-channel QRM on FT8 during a band opening.

What do we, us dedicated VHF contest and weak signal guys, do about this ?  Do we petition to disallow digital modes during contests ?  Do we ask for a dedicated digital contest ?  Do we walk away ?  Do we do nothing ?  Or, do we teach by example, using the proper tools at the proper time (like we've always done), telling people why and how we do what we do and hope we can build momentum and a cadre of tool-using, thinking VHF multi-mode op's ?

-W9RM


Keith J Morehouse
Managing Partner
Calmesa Partners G.P.
Olathe, CO

901 - 920 of 1166