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White noise

Sep 11th 2017, 20:35


Joined: Mar 4th 2016, 20:17
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
My Dad gave an Icom 737. I was so excited Because even though I've been around Amateur Radio and have held every license class from Novice. I've never dug into the hobby. I've always wanted to. But life happened. Anyway I had limited space so I bought a Buddistick. Hooked it all up turned it on... White noise. nothing not even CW across all bands. Took the ol' boy to a professional radio guy. He replaced 7 (I think) trimmer capacitors. I brought it home hooked it up. same result. Put it on the floor in the closet. That was that. I spent my wad on the old rig. Went and got Extra, but still let it all go. Just didn't have time. Now I've got some time and some new resources so I bought a brand new Yaesu FT-891 with FC-50 tuner. Hooked it up to the Buddistick. same result. Checked the 50' coax. perfect continuity on the shield and the center conductor. Made a 98" (each side) wire dipole for 20m's. same result just white noise. What am I doing wrong? (ps. My dad lives far away. I don't think he gives a rip about my interests in Hamming. Otherwise I'd ask him).
Sep 12th 2017, 09:47


Super Moderator

Joined: Apr 4th 1998, 00:00
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
Each side for a 20M dipole should be twice as long, or 199 inches.

These days 20M is mostly a daytime band, you may not hear much in the evening after dinner.

There have also been some radio blackouts this month--the last one was on the 10th of September. Which was a surprise because the Sun has been rather quiet of late. There may be more this month.

But, solar activity can result in bursts of 20M activity in the evening.

You could have a shorted coax cable.
A simple antenna for hearing stuff is 10 or 15 feet of hookup wire attached to the center pin of a PL-259. Hang it off the ceiling in a wood frame house and your should be able to hear something. Though that won't work so well in concrete and steel.

Zack W1VT
ARRL Senior Lab Engineer
Sep 12th 2017, 20:04


Joined: Mar 4th 2016, 20:17
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
You are right Zack And thanks for the response. My measurement for the 20m dipole was actually 198" (197.something"), doing my math from the 14.225mhz. (for each side). I thought that to be good enough, with the tuner of course. For a quick test antenna anyways. Both of my attempts to go HF were during the day. I do know what HF is supposed to sound like My dad first licensed in 1971 (I was 8yrs old) and I listened to that every morning when my dad would do radio in our study just outside my bedroom .And I've been to many Field Days. My radio today doesn't sound like that. My dad isn't active too much any more. But He really got into ham radio. I think he still goes to the club meetings. I thought he would be tickled when I passed Extra, but I got little response. But all PTSD aside. I don't have any experience with HF, and I'm pretty sure it isn't the radio(s). I do have a 6m whip that HRO sent me by accident, accidentally. I tried that and should have been able to receive something, Don't you think. I'm just starting to break the ice with the club here, and I'm sure I'll find a few Elmer's I just need to be patient, You know.
Thanks gain for the come back, Zack. 73 Larry W8LMC

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