Joined: Sat, Apr 4th 1998, 00:00 Roles: N/A Moderates: N/A

Latest Topics

Topic Created Posts Views Last Activity
Shortcuttng the SS exchange Nov 7th 2011, 20:56 3 1,687 on 8/6/12
QST feedback forum? Sep 15th 2011, 12:04 4 1,559 on 22/9/11

Latest Posts

Topic Author Posted On
SOFTWARE KA0SMD 1 week, 2 days ago
Give Fldigi a try.

73, Nate
ARRL eQSL Policy KB1XI 4 weeks ago
As I see it, beyond digital signatures, the issue is the way eQSL handles incoming QSL requests. The eQSL system shows all requests for your station while LoTW does not. In this case LoTW employs a "double blind" system where only the LoTW system can see the requests made for other stations. LoTW is actually more strict than paper QSLs.

Let's say P59XYZ busts a call and uploads his log to LoTW. In this case neither the station actually worked nor the erroneous callsign will know a request is pending for them. In the eQSL system, the holder of the erroneously logged callsign does receive a request even though the QSO was not actually made with that station. Just like with paper QSLs, it is up to the station that received the request in error to do the right thing and ignore/delete/trash the erroneous request. LoTW won't even allow a potentially unscrupulous operator the choice!

Until eQSL fixes this loophole, I don't see any hope for them to be acceptable for ARRL awards.

73, Nate
W1AW/portable and LOTW KF5HAJ 4 weeks ago
Beyond the obvious things like call, band, and date matching, the time must fall within a 30 minute window for a QSL match to occur. I have had at least QSL match fail due to the W1AW portable op logging on paper and then guessing the time of the QSO later. He was 33 minutes off of my computer logged time for the contact. I would guess this could be happening with other QSOs that have not been confirmed as of several months even though I'm reasonably certain the op did not bust my call at the time. As it is trivial to keep a computer's time synced via NTP, it almost seems inexcusable for QSO times to differ by more than a few seconds.

73, Nate
HF Beam Antenna Polarization WA9WVX 4 weeks ago
This is an area that could benefit for more experimentation. I think that the horizontal position is mostly a choice of practicality. An HF yagi oriented in the vertical position would need to be some distance from the parallel mast and/or tower to avoid interaction. We accept the trade-off that comes with the ease of mounting such antennas on a tower.

Last year QST published an article by Eric Nichols, KL7AJ, titled "Gimme an X, gimme an O" that offers some ideas into the reception of signals refracted from the ionosphere.

Before I was licensed I would look at the drawings in the antenna book and handbook that described take-off angle and wondered why it wasn't common to be able to tilt the antenna for the desired distance. I've since learned that it is much more complicated than that! Antenna height above ground and the surrounding terrain are among the most important factors affecting take-off angle it would seem.

There is still a lot of opportunity for experimentation and perhaps even some discovery.

73, Nate
Dipole or loop? KO0Y 4 weeks ago
I will guess that your objective is more for local coverage than DX in which case a 30' height is reasonably close to optimum for 80/75m and will still work well enough for NVIS on 40m. When I first tried the all-band doublet style of antenna I used 300 ohm ribbon line as well--the type with the solid poly insulation, not foam. After a year or so I bought a roll of the 450 ohm "window" line from a local dealer and installed that in place of the 300 ohm stuff. I was pleasantly surprised with the improvement in signal strength and the tuning action improved on my small MFJ manual tuner. A month or two later I replaced the small 941C tuner with an MFJ 986 differential T tuner and gained another measure of improvement. I have since replaced the 986 with a Palstar AT1500DT (no longer made) that offered a measure of improvement with ease of tuning and is definitely a higher quality unit.

My take away is thus:
* Use 450 or 600 ohm line (600 may need to be constructed)
* Use the biggest/baddest tuner you can afford to reduce losses as much as possible and have increased tuning range.

I've now happened on a third item to that list and that is to make a doublet at least 3/8 wavelength in overall length on the lowest band of interest. I am using a doublet with a 204' total flattop on 160 and 80/75m (it also works well on the higher bands although tuning can be tricky and lobes may be to some direction other than one desires).

As to a loop, they work. I have not had the area available to put one up myself but I have seldom worked anyone on the low bands using a loop who did not have an excellent signal. Since you have the trees available, give a loop a try. There will be plenty of sources available on the Web to give you some good ideas.

At least for a time you will probably want to keep the dipole although I would suggest upgrading it to 450 ohm line and you'll likely want a beefier tuner. Perhaps even one of the balanced line jobs (I've not used one of them either). You can then build your own dossier of comparison between the doublet and the loop.

Have fun!

73, Nate

Back to Top