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Messages - NJQA

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Equipment / RFSpace
« on: November 28, 2020, 1915 UTC »

Are they really back?  The last post to their blog was in 2012.


General Radio Discussion / Re: RIP Universal Radio
« on: November 22, 2020, 1634 UTC »
I have been expecting this.  The first hint was the move of the store location, followed by the sale of service manuals and parts.  Then a number of used items they had listed started to look like someone was thinning out their collection...I was told this was from hamfests and estate sales but I wasnít convinced.  Updates to their site were slow and last week they seemed to stop.

Itís too bad.  They will be missed.

The biggest contributor to poor ground systems is failing to understand/comprehend *why* we are grounding.   You may be grounding something for lightning protection, RFI/EMC, electrical safety, EMP, etc. - but we still call it ďgroundingĒ even though the requirements and methods may be totally different (and possibly at odds with each other).

For instance, the NEC says that an electrical safety ground is not required to use larger than #6 wire....but that would be totally inadequate for grounding a tower leg.  The electrical safety ground wire is sized to ensure sufficient current flow so that safety devices like fuses and circuit breakers will function as they should.  The tower ground wire is supposed to carry most of the lightning surge current to ground.

RF grounds are very much frequency dependent and as Chris points out you have to pay attention to how long they are.

You canít lose track of legal requirements.  It is possible to install something that is fully code compliant (and kosher with your insurance company) but doesnít fix your problems, and vice versa.

There is a wealth of excellent and free military, FAA, and NASA pubs on the internet that discuss this in depth...so many that it will overwhelm you.

It is no wonder so many people have problems with grounding....but the first step to success is understanding WHAT you want to accomplish and the WHY of what you are doing.

Amateur Radio / Re: Satellite attempt
« on: October 14, 2020, 0943 UTC »
Still having issues receiving satellite transmissions. I have found my Baofeng HT even with the squelch opened up does not seem to receive at all. Which seems strange to me because I see videos of people using them successfully. I have heard they are hit and miss though.

This is a known problem with the Baofeng radios.   See this:


An outboard filter might help.

General Radio Discussion / Re: About recording audio...
« on: October 06, 2020, 1315 UTC »
Compressing a MP3 300 times:


Equipment / Re: Scanner beam
« on: September 27, 2020, 1753 UTC »

I found that listing while trying to find some dimensional info on the antenna, which I still have not found.

The dimensions (within an inch or so):

Boom length = 48 inches

Widest elements = 16 x 2 = 32 inches

Narrowest elements = 2 x 2 = 4 inches

Equipment / Re: Scanner beam
« on: September 26, 2020, 1421 UTC »
The mounting hardware it comes with directly supports horizontal or vertical mounting, so nothing needs to be drilled.

Equipment / Scanner beam
« on: September 26, 2020, 1252 UTC »
These might make good scanner antennas (mount for vertical polarization).  In bulk, they are $12 each and have a Type F connector.


They remind me of the scanner beam that Grove sold many years ago.

General Radio Discussion / SK: Dallas Lankford
« on: September 21, 2020, 1216 UTC »
I hadnít known of Dr. Lankfordís passing.

Dallas wrote many great articles on antennas and receiver mods for DXing.  He will be missed.


Equipment / You Loop
« on: September 20, 2020, 1429 UTC »
KX4O has posted his tests and conclusions of the YouLoop antenna.


For Sale / Wanted / Barter / Re: Wanted: Icom OPC-023C DC power cable
« on: September 08, 2020, 1124 UTC »
The one he is looking for has the pins all in one line, not the more common square (2 over 2) type found today.  It looks like two of the pins are jumpered together too.  Still worth checking with Tower though!

For Sale / Wanted / Barter / Re: Wanted: Icom OPC-023C DC power cable
« on: September 07, 2020, 1222 UTC »
If you are talking about the 4 pin molex connector on the back of the 7100 and 8500, those connectors are common and easy to get.  It would be easy to put together a DC power cable.   Probably less than $10 worth of materials with new parts.

SDR - Software Defined Radio / Re: SDR recommendation......
« on: September 06, 2020, 1455 UTC »
Copied from my rely in another thread....

The RX-666 and RX-888 are similar. Both are based on the BBRF103 open-source design. The RX-888 adds an integrated LNA, plus claims of possibly a higher-precision TXCO, for around $200 to $250 from China via eBay or similar.

For HF and below, both appears to use the LTC2208.... or a clone.... or a salvage chip? The LTC2208 is 15 years old at this point, but AFAIK, it still is not a cheap IC to legitimately source new. Up to 32MHz sampling, with up to 28.8MHz alias-free sampling. USB 3.0 is required for such high sample rates.

BTW, above HF they use a common R820T2, but apparently with up to 8MHz sampling currently possible.


About software, AFAIK there is a modified version of HDSDR+EXTIO for the RX-666, plus I have seen a claim the BBRF103 project EXTIO should work. I have no idea if either supports configuring the LNA in the RX-888, though.


This is starting to look interesting.

Managed to pick up a rare DX with the MLA30+ last night albeit very weak signal, I could hear it.

It is Radio Logos from Peru Txing with 1 kW and distance from me is 12,000 km. Not bad with a 29 Euro active loop antenna :D


Hopefully you actually had an ID.  Your Twitter video posting had no intelligible audio.

The RF Workbench / Re: Inexpensive frequency counter Modules
« on: August 28, 2020, 1151 UTC »
I donít know which frequency counter module you have, but if it is similar to this one, it does have an adjustment for the counter timebase.


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