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Topics - NQC

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Equipment / " Feedline " Antenna - "450 " Ohms
« on: June 08, 2021, 1531 UTC »
Hey All,

I want to try an antenna that would be for temporary use  in areas of possible power line noise.

I envision running 2  insulated  multi stranded   wires  ( AWG size TBA , aluminum vs copper  composition TBA ) ,
 air spaced at 1"   to  "simulate "  foam twin lead in  the  ball park  300 to 450 ohm  range     .
Conductors are  shorted at the elevated end.

I am shooting to build a supposed  folded  vertical "quarter" wave/ "low noise " design  for  1 Mhz. It's a bit unclear to me what length is "ideal" and  what  length actually represents  a TRUE quarter wave when it is  folded .

FWIW, At 1 Mhz a quarter wave MONOpole  would be 234 ft (  for now I am disregarding any "Earth" side considerations such as 45 degree  drooping  radials, buried "spoke" radials, etc). 234 feet is  WAAAAY  TOOOOO TALL !

But I AM thinking about a possibly  alleged "desired" electrical  length of 117 ft.

117 ft is also a "practical " length to actually be able to work with.  I am not sure  whether (2X) 117 ft would  still   only "represent" an 1/8 monopole in reference to the wire run's total  vertical height -OR- whether it acts as a "true" folded 1/4 wave, having one leg running up to full height and one leg running back down to "lawn level" (117 ft "plus" 117 ft).

BTW, I am sure that there is no way I can hang it "fully" vertical. I'd be LUCKY to get it up 40 or 60 ft. So there would probably be more than  HALF of the antenna's  total length arcing over and running fairly low  horizontal to the  lawn (like a kite string). I can probably get    a tie off on a low tree branch at 6 ft or so , then down to radio. Implications ?

I also wonder if  giving this "twin  lead " a few twists is advantageous. I have seen this done when twin lead is actually used to FEED  a "real" antenna (  ie a horizontal dipole ).

For  the  receiver, I'd make  up a 175 or 220 uH (wound with #28) ferrite bar with maybe 4 or 5 "taps" mostly bunched up at the cold end- hopefully one of which winds up  at a ball park  300 ohms or greater (otherwise put, guesswork).
 A  properly spec'd ceramic var cap would be across full coil,so  the project would end up being a twin lead tuned  ferrite  auto transformer air /magnetically coupled to the receiver's internal  ferrite.

I know that design specs  and "rules" are much less important on receive antennas as  opposed to transmit antennas.Also  the "characteristic response" is going to  vary as one moves up or down in frequency away from the "design reference" of 1 Mhz. There is one school of thought that says "Just try it and see how it works". The problem is that I don't have NEARLY as much to time play radio as I would like, so I'd like to get a bit of  back round , input and "predictions" before I forge ahead.

Also, it  can be a bit of  learning experience and  if nothing else, a  theoretical exercise  on how antennas work.

ANY help GREATLY appreciated,

de N1NQC 

MW Loggings / Dxpedition to Wells, Maine
« on: June 06, 2021, 1332 UTC »
Hey All,

 Yesterday I took a day trip to Wells ,on the coast of Maine.

Logged on the car radio at a HUGE salt marsh ,1830 UTC.

570 WMCA Nada, M.I.A.
710 WOR barely any audio
770 WABC barely any audio
880 WCBS barely any audio
660 WFAN barely any audio , maybe a TAD better, up and down in slow QSB.   ( FWIW, 710,770, and 880 couldn't even "find  the ambition" to  give me any QSB :)))

A bit of an education: Despite  being at the  marsh  there was no salt advantage  . The   NYC to Maine  bearing was  nearly ALL over a land path of high loss New England granite. It was nice to find out where the  "dependable" NYC day timers (listed above)  almost completely run out of gas. So being 78 miles north of my normal Boston QTH caused even the BIG New Yorkers to pretty much  find the  end of their string.  MAYBE they would have been  a" bit more  usable" on a BIG antenna, but.....

1010 WCNL Newport ,NH ,at around 110 mi ,mostly barely any audio, but up and down a bit  like 'FAN. Bizarre transmitter - 10 Kw daytime into a 62 ft (!) antenna (  essentially a "dummy load")
1600 WUNR Boston barely any audio, despite 20 kw at 78 miles, but I was mostly out of pattern.
740 WJIB Cambridge, MA, 250 watts into  omni 1/8 wave, mostly barely any audio. Interesting to deliver the same as 'UNR.
730 WJTO Bath ,Maine, 1 Kw omni, 65 Mi ,mostly salt path.Loud and clear. JTO is net control /program origin station for JIB and others around New England.

So , some really cool and interesting very weak signal  daytime work.Fun.

(Also on 150 Kc- ATS 803a:  Surprised  no QRN crashes copied  despite lightning within 100 to 150 Mi to West . So I'm also finding out how a  barefoot (no outboard  loop) ATS  may  on work on LW or BCB. . A sensitive rig , but with a short ferrite bar). The 803 got no  NYC BCB  at all.

Other activities were: beach ( 52 deg water WAY too cold, could only wade up to ankles  :o) seafood, shopping/ flea market with the Mrs. (got a few cool goodies ) ,  cool breezy ride on a  nicely restored antique  trolley at trolley museum,  walk  in pine forest ,countryside driving, etc.

Wx was around 80,humid  and mostly sunny. At times good flows of very cool air off ocean  suddenly gave nice refreshment. At other times , flow would shut down and it got quite warm.  Later on , well after  the ATS  150 Kc LW session, visually  interesting thunderstorms (with infrequent lightning)  built up  to the our distant   West (around  the Lake Winnipesaukee area of NH  and  Northward toward   MT Washington ,NH   ), but we got home before they drifted into the Boston area.

Overall , a GREAT day, felt good to get out and actually be able to DO things.


Pirate Radio History / Confessions of a Former Operator
« on: June 01, 2021, 1154 UTC »
Hey All,

Just kind of  thinking back on the "old days" and the fun we had.

My first "operation" was VERY high up  in upper HF on a frequency that I found out LATER (of course) was  "supposedly" was a    frequency for  "U.S.   Entities  Operations" in   Africa. Not sure if this was just a "legend"  or not . I never copied  anything on frequency and never had any problems (FWIW, Africa may have been in my  dipole null anyways). It made  for an interesting "story" anyways.

The transmitter was a Uniden "export" type rig with mic input modified for an audio patch cord input for pre recorded cassette programming. A  double bracket bank of 6 mini fans - 3 for forced inlet, 3 for pulling discharge, kept the rig sink "cooler".

The  transmitter fed an outboard RF amplifier that was chilled water cooled , with the final power at 180 W peak into a 1/2 dipole.

Everything was powered by a set of  stand alone  car batteries.

I had a number of reports into drop Box 452 Wellsville, NY from the Southwest US and also from Europe. I used to announce my upcoming transmissions via the old "Signals" program on 100 Kw shortwave monster WWCR in Nashville,TN.

The next outlet I had was at  around 10 W AM on 1700 KC into a high helix antenna  that covered  out to around three miles with a "good" or better signal at most locations . No drop box for that operation, but also  a lot of fun , especially on the "Big Christmas Broadcast" each year.

Also I lent a hand at a  local "community based organization" than ran "Allston Brighton Free Radio". It originally was operating on  three  different X band frequencies  all at once to cover different areas. We tried to stay at true part 15 as much as possible .Two  sites  were microwave linked back to the net control location.  Eventually we dropped  the two remote  sites and went with high power at the base location( so much for part 15 ! :))) . I built the BIG antenna antenna for the "beefed up"  operation.We got a LARGE coverage area ( much more than all  the part 15's combined). The mayor of Boston at the time actually came in and did a show with us. He either didn't know or care that  we were  now an unlicensed  "big time" outlet.The operator of ABFR was also  a "consultant" who set up a number of Free Radio stations around the city .One station was  called  "Girlz Radio" run by minority female high school students. They ran  on WAY down on 540 from a commanding hill top site that blanketed a huge area.I got the "Dime Tour" of that facility on one  occasion .The view of the city was phenomenal !

FWIW, some of the ABFR programming was also carried free of charge  on (FCC licensed) WJIB 740 ( 250 watts  day/5 watts night). The owner (Bob Bittner) is BIG into "free speech on the  radio"). His  commercial  free "beautiful music"  network of multiple  stations in New England is inter spaced with such PSA 's as : "Cut up your credit cards, pay cash", "Avoid chains, buy local", philosophical quotes from different folks, etc. For many years he used his own money to keep on air, but now he does a fundraiser to just cover his costs. JIB is the ONLY LICENSED "FREE" radio station I have EVER heard of.

LONG before I met my wife to be, she and her young son did a program on "Radio Free Allston -FM.RFA had a "decent" coverage area, but certainly  was NOT a "big" station either. They were interviewed by the Boston Globe which
 (as quoted in the Superman TV show opening) is  a "great metropolitan newspaper" with a huge subscription circulation, both  locally and  internationally.   The  station got a nice  write up  and then was promptly raided by The F unny C andy C ompany who  shut  them down on the spot. The end.

I also did some "liaison" work  with the Ireland's Dun Loaghaire Local Radio ("DLR") near Dublin which ran local FM and also on shortwave SSB .I still have some  of their programming tapes. FWIW,  I could  copy them  on shortwave here in the  NE US.

I also knew one guy who did  high power FM from the top of a "more than 40 story building" and wiped out 2/3 of the coverage area  of a   distant  legitimate licensed  college station on that frequency. Bad, Pirate, bad >:( ! I eventually got him to "see the wisdom" (and also avoid getting slammed by the FCC) and to shut it  down. He then went over  to a "low" power FM  tx into a TV antenna on a CLEAR  frequency (many miles away    from the skyscraper site) at near sea level.   It covered  nearly  all of his   home town, which was much more acceptable then his prior stunt.

There USED to be  quite a few operations in the Boston area"back in the day". We had up to 4  or more different  Haitians running  at once in the X band (and  1 or 2 in the upper old  AM band as well ) AND some on FM, also other format    stations in the  X  ,old and on FM. Only 1 or 2 Haitians now  left in X, unsure if anybody is  on FM. I  am not much of an FM fan and prefer my friendship with A ncient  M ary.
Now ALL my gear  is  LONG gone,  and it's just a distant fun memory..

I  have been recently  looking at some discrete transistor VERY LOW power  designs for full  band "VFO"coverage . One application would be at "pico" power for use as a piece of "test gear" ( AM BCB BFO, BCB RF bias source, etc). But if  I "pump up" a bit  (  but still at a definite part 15 / QRPpp) it would be nice to be able to  listen to my  programming cassettes on my old     "Boy's" reflex  pocket radio   out in the park, maybe  75 ft away from the Tx.

We'll see.

 de NQC K

Weather / Simply, Rain.
« on: June 01, 2021, 0006 UTC »
Hey All,
Thankful for rain.

We finally got some some   soaking precip, around 3 " in the last 3 days. Nice, gradual and able to seep in. Not a run off deluge. Another inch or so expected in a few days.

The soil should  also  accept    this expected   rain  nicely , now that it is moist, but not saturated.

My thoughts go out to the folks in the  Sierras of California who are in extreme drought conditions and are expedited to go through another Super Fire season. Last year the smoke was visible here in MA.

Southern   Saskatchewan and Southern Manitoba  are also extremely  dry. Smoke from there also been spotted here over they years. Of course it is a shorter path than  from Cali.


Hey All,
I recently picked up a beautiful 1920's variable cap mounted in a heavy oak side sloped enclosure. The cap , dial and panel look almost like new.

The downside was that it  only topped out at 250 Pf , not really high enough for any of    my "serious" uses. The  inductor for the bottom of B'cast  is 400 uH (!) of #28 rectangular five point spiderweb.It looks more like a SAILBOAT than a spider's web :). Space was extremely tight. It's  wound   on a small sheet of vanished writing pad  thin  cardboard. Basically I "tried" to violate EVERY rule of good crystal set building (re L/C ratio, coil shape,  coil form material ,  var cap insulation being  bakelite, etc, etc).

I may try a few outboard tricks to "sort of" help it, but don't expect too much other than locals here.

But it WILL be a NICE piece of "eye candy" with nickel binding posts, cotton wire, etc ,etc. Everything is being  done with  1920's material and look.

My bedside shelving is small and already mostly packed up with gear , but this rig will be small   and should fit .  I'm thinking of a  fun little single dial radio for the local  big guns on an indoor short wire, which is fine.

Years ago I smelted my own "home brew" lead  sulphide material by melting lead and rapidly working in  raw sulfur. It  instantly burst into flames and had to be blown out like a big birthday candle.The  resulting material was black and ugly- NOT pretty and  sparkly like   the silver bearing "steel" galena " that I've also  used   . But BOY, was it HOT- very sensitive and easy to set . Maybe I try  whipping up another   batch  in a small metal cup  for use on this set.


MW Loggings / Finally: WINS daytime !
« on: May 21, 2021, 2309 UTC »
Hey All,

2030 UTC  log,  QTH park across the street, Super radio I with Select- A -Tenna. Sun at 45 deg in the West.

570 WMCA  A  very good   catch ,also a new one for daytime. Being so low in frequency  probably gave it a boost .Weak and  steady but beat up kind of badly  by local 590 WEZE QRM.

660 WFAN strong, Ho Hum , common daytime. Slapped around some w/ QRM from WSRO regional on 650 .

710 WOR, another "expected" daylight station, good signal.No QRM, strongest catch.

880 WCBS also a  daytime common and strong but  also had strong QRM from  local 890

1010 WINS Weak (!), only could be copied with S-A-T  (Others above were usually better with S-A-T, but could go it alone at times.). S-A-T and SR-1 geometry ,alignment and interplay had to be EXACT to 1/8 or 1/4 ". Super easy to  lose.Rapid and  serious flutter that also rose and fell in slow QSB.Yet  another study in propagation. I have wanted this one for many years and finally snagged it ! BOO YEAH !!!  :)

NO sign of 1010 WCNL in NH , even though I swung around and looked for them. During my previous attempt in the  park  CNL was fair or good and WINS was the one that was  missing. Go figure . I  copied  CNL at seaside  10 MI SE of here  maybe a year ago  , so it wasn't a new catch at the park.

For some reason I REALLY like working 1010 re CFRB  ( a bunch  of times , with my QTH in their full dead null. Also ,  had a recent CFRB /CFRX on 6070 Kc ),WCNL and of course "1010 WINS" ( which it DOES !).

Gotta figure out why some day time New Yorker  bang in here and others stink . Could it be transmitter location vs NYC Skyscraper alignment to me, causing a ground wave foul up ? Possible?  Any comments re this ?  I need to draw some  map lines when I get a chance.


Equipment / Dueling Selecta- A Tennas (NOT Banjos)
« on: May 19, 2021, 1259 UTC »
Hey All,

Last night I decided to try out something that I had seen that originally used two  stand alone large/outboard  home brew ferrite bar/ tank "antennas" for Co Channel "pest control" application .

The idea was to  fully null the pest with the receiver's ferrite first.Then place one outboard  bar to boost the desired station  coupling it  along SIDE of the  rig's internal  ferrite and the other outboard bar off the END of the rig's ferrite to deepen the pest's null.

Since I don't have any  big  ferrite, I decided to try two basic/no jack  model Select- A -Tennas instead. The results  were intriguing.

I tuned into "My favorite Co Channel " (starring Ray Walston and Bill Bixby :))) 740 for  CFZM  vs very  local  WJIB which was still huge at 5 watts night power.

The expected orientation did not pan out at all, at least on the Super Radio I and these air core loops.. Trying to deepen JIB's attenuation by aligning one of the loops null to the rig ferrite null did nada, at least for me in this case. Changing the distance , etc, didn't work at all. All  action was  attained  by coupling both loops peaks "broadside" to the ferrite.

Odd, since  loop peaks are  much more "vague" than the "black hole "  of the  null  (after fifty years of playing around I am STILL amazed by radio !).

The best configuration seemed to be having one loop at one end of the ferrite and the other at the opposite end and on the opposite side of the radio cabinet. That way both loops "boosted" the SR-1 for Zoomer but had as much physical separation as possible.The only null action was in the  radio's  ferrite.

Even MORE wacky was that loop closer to JIB loop "liked"  a more  "conventional" 90 degree coupling angle, yet the other one ""needed" to be at 45 degrees in order for the entire set up to work. And of course like  previous single loop  experiments, all placements (rig, loop 1 and loop 2) HAD to be exact to within 1/8 to 1/4 ". If any parameter was off, even a tiny bit, you heard zilch (except a slight or moderate JIB artifact depending on what they were playing).

Zoomer rolled up and down (as usual), but never really came up to much  beyond weak or a bit better , even after a while of being parked on frequency. Zoomer's transmitter  antenna  null is in my direction (not   "optimal"), and also  propagation  seemed kind of  crumby as well.

I  repeatedly tried it "barefoot" , going over to  only the JIB closer loop  during these marginal conditions. No dice.Every time I tried.But when the second loop was brought back in, Zoomer came back in (WHEN the  QSB "cooperated").

So the takeaway ,at least to me under these conditions and set up , is that the second loop  WAS useful, even in this situation of two stations nearly 180 off from each other (which is a "challenge").

The next target is 650 with regional WSRO vs THE LEGEND (WSM). Both are  ALMOST in the SAME direction from me. If I can tame SRO even a tiny bit and  bring SM up a TAD , I'll call it a big victory. "We'll see".

BTW, I  really miss my MFJ 1026 :-[.

Your mileage may vary on all of this  and no warranty is implied :).


Hey All,

Just ran a few of these for grins :

WCNL ,1010 Newport ,NH :1/4 wave would be  231 ft. They run 10 Kw day on   63 ft (!!) of guyed tower with a Zillion panel antennas (cell/ 800/900Mhz ??) attached . AM almost looks like an "afterthought"  and that it seems most of the  dough is coming in  from repeater rentals. LOTS of   juice lost  on this  antenna  , but I still   hear them daytime ( fair to weak )
 through hilly  terrain / poor ground  conductivity at around 113 miles away.

WZBR , 1410 Dedham, MA : 1/4 wave would be 165 ft. They run 2Kw day into free standing 75 ft fiberglass whip (helical wound inside). I'd love to see this one in 75 MPH winds ! Fair signal at 9 mi ,  terrain path  maybe not too bad.

WJIB 740 Cambridge MA : 1/4 wave would be 316 ft. They run a 285 ft free standing tower, so it would be  thrown into our "not too bad department" at  31 ft short of 1/4 wave.Line of sight "Band Bully", even at 5 W night time  power at around 4 miles out.

Can anyone else give  any examples that you know of, the shorter the better. Maybe 1/8 wave or less ?   I am just curious how LOW some of these guys limbo and STILL make it "work", but obviously WITH a serious  electric bill as a "penalty".

FWIW /  a bit OT, I have worked out to 27 miles using  a high mast mounted 50 ohm resistor with very short leads soldered on   75 ft of 9913 (a "sort of"  "near isotropic " radiator :)  ?? ?)  on 440 Mhz FM. Rig output hyper low ,  got around  2 to 4 mW output  at radiator ?? QRPpppp- THAT was fun ! I also ran ridiculously low  outputs on 2 M SSB/FM as well.


MW Loggings / Hodge Podge
« on: May 17, 2021, 1145 UTC »
Hey All.

 From 5/16 and 5/17 -A mix and match of day and night, in NOISY apt  or in park across the street, using  Super Radio I and  basic Select-A-Tenna. Sorry about the sloppy report , but a wild weekend .I went to  BIG radio flea market,  much unpacking/testing goodies, etc, etc.

Day/  QTH : QRN quiet park - solid WFAN 660, WCBS 880 (etc)  and also 1620 pirate ( in full QSB). Tried for WINS 1010 but it copied WCNL on 1010 in NH instead (  I really want NYC daytime on 1010, so maybe a bigger loop next time). Broke off  as rain/ occasional  lightning approached.

Night /apt  my BEST CFZM 740 Zoomer reception to date. I had the  usual 740 Khz 1/2 second consistent  "beat flutter" and roller coaster propagation, but this time when Zoomer Zoomed, it REALLY Zoomed UP - VERY  BIG ! But as per usual , at times, it would completely collapse for extended periods. It's always very "moody" here with their null in my direction .  It's a  real study in night time BCB propagation.  Extremely touchy and exacting placement of rcvr and loop required ( ie down to around  1/8 to 1/4 " !!). The Zoomster is up  against monster local Co channel WJIB . Even when  the JIBer is  at night power (5 W), it "lights up the room" being  line of sight at a just a few miles.

KDKA 1020, WSB 750 ,CMLA /R. Progresso 640 all MIA.

Other misc goodies logged, but frankly, lost in the "blur".

Also just for giggles I did a bit of lightning "DFing" on 530 khz  comparing to IPhone lighting map.

I also found out my kitchen seem a BIT less noisy (FWIW).


MW Free Radio / UNID 1620 AM 1900 UTC 16 May 2021
« on: May 17, 2021, 1110 UTC »
Hey All.

5/16/21 ,1900 UTC, 1620 Khz (?), GE Super Radio I , Basic Select -A -Tenna (no jack)   tried for grins, but mostly not needed. QTH park across the street from my  (NOISY !!!) apt. Just 150 ft makes a HUGE difference, electrically much more  quiet there !

Some  loud Goth / very heavy screaming guitar ,  but also some really  soft stuff ( ex : a cover of   "Scarborough Fair" by a female singer).  Young/ Caucasian sounding announcer. At times full QSB ( in blasting full daylight) , so maybe a"short" NVIS skywave (??) at less than 200 mi (??). Who knows, could be "closer".  But rains/ with  occasional lightning began to approach  , so without a good ID I abandoned the "Dxpedition" (Hi).

I just bought this radio, so not sure how high it tops out, gotta run a sig gen  check when I get a chance . But it definitely  does have some "head room" - CHRN 1610 was an easy catch the night  before  ( up against local flame thrower WUNR on 1600) and it still  squeaked a bit higher than them. I think I had a TINY bit of play above the pirate as well, so I am going with 1620.Some say SR-1's top at 1630, but again , gotta check.

Web address sounded something like heardonradio.com (??) but it was no  good on Google.

WEDG ? Unsure of probability.


Weather / Cumulus w/ Rainbow
« on: May 12, 2021, 2154 UTC »
Hey All,

Kind of an interesting afternoon. Nice "pop up"  showers (more noted in Northern New England), but a few  moderate or better  ones near Boston as well . We haven't had a convective event of this type in quite a while.  Cu bases at around FL 4.0. Decent moderate rainbow as shower  to N   tower passes SE. Extremely brief and exceptionally light rain shower at my QTH in far western part of Boston.


Hey All,

LONG shot on this one- but :

I am wondering about   pics  I saw MANY,MANY  years ago of an antenna in Israel. (If we could , please leave politics and "current events" out of  any replies- strictly  a technical discussion -thanks).

I believe that the Israelis had a "hardened" antenna  (if I recall correctly)  for AM broadcast. It consisted of  heavy steel I  beams welded in series  stood off on large insulators , very close to the ground (6' up ?) .There may have been protective earthen dikes around it as well.

Probably a miserable  pattern for local ground wave but maybe via NVIS- MAYBE ??  . But if one really cranked up the juice then tuned  and loaded it properly, I suppose it COULD  ground  wave  "radiate" MAYBE enough to cover a limited area ( ie maybe just  around Tel Aviv ?). If nothing else, a fascinating technical concept (re being bomb "resistant"), even if it was a real dog re power in vs. power out.  Transmitter was likely in a bunker.

I can't find a THING about this online and I can only imagine it may be long gone by now.

It also seems that Israel in general  is now completely off of the AM broadcast band for ALL (ALL) outlets and that Kol Yisrael is also long gone off shortwave (  anyone ,any info  ?).

Israeli Army Radio / Galgalatz now seems to be on FM only as well. Not sure if the I beam antenna was theirs or not for civil defense purposes. Also WAY, WAY back in the day, I THINK they were also  on shortwave, maybe using  SSB (anyone, any info,  frequencies used /mode ?).

I have personally seen "a sort of" "hardened" antenna  on the Maginot Line Fortifications near Bitche, France. Large steel brackets on a vertical wall held a  large gauge   long wire antenna on heavy insulators. Certainly  not  nearly as beefy as an I beam antenna, but "tough enough" against small arms fire ( I guess) .

de K

Weather / No Drought About It
« on: May 05, 2021, 1317 UTC »
Hey All,

After a long  and somewhat worrying dry spell, we are FINALLY getting "some" rains.

Localized dry air incursion has been a problem here. Systems move in , but then get locally desiccated, so that the heavier precip becomes more spotty. I haven't seen a generalized widespread are of "moderate to heavy" of rain that lasts very long for a quite a while.

Although we are  sort of drifting back toward an average rainfall total for the year, I'd still like to see more water and faster , if I could.I like to look at the 300 MB future depiction animation as my general guide to at least a few days out.

FWIW, I was a   volunteer for  10 years plus  at the 135 year old Blue Hill Weather Observatory/ Climatelogical Research Station in Milton, MA  (as radioman deluxe, mechanic, clerical, chief cook /bottle washer, some observation work, etc, etc). But other life commitments forced me to eventually  drift down from the hill.


MW Loggings / X Band Report
« on: April 29, 2021, 1203 UTC »
Hey All.

1900 local yesterday, on car radio, parked on a very busy road with lots of moderate height buildings all  around.Twilight , but definitely not fully dark yet. A quick screaming band scan while  waiting for wife in store .

1610 CHNA  ONT weak to fair
1620 misc ,mostly weak
1630 misc , mostly weak
1640 misc , mostly weak
1650 French, up and down , good at times. New skywave Haitian pirate ? A bit of  doubt it was CKZW or CINA, but dunno.
1660 WWRU NJ good to strong
1670 weak, mostly  misc
1680 WTTM NJ good to strong
1690 misc, mostly weak
1700 WRCR NYC mostly good
1710 WQFG689 NJ way up and way down, often fair to good. A nice  catch,definitely the pick of the litter.

Re : "misc , mostly weak "- some could have been legit dx, some may have been local images from lower in band. Again ,  a bit pressed for time, so I didn't really wait long for stuff to rise up, like I normally would have.Just gave the dial  quick whirl .


MW Loggings / CFZM Zoomer 740
« on: April 28, 2021, 1202 UTC »
Hey All,

Zoomer in deep QSB, mostly weak (or gone) ,up to fair "at times". Up against local Co -Channel WJIB .

JIB is the "Giant Flea" here  at night.Their tower is only around 2.5 mi direct  line of sight, so even when at 5 W night time power, it's BIG.

Also noted (as always) was the infamous  "Zoomer Flutter" .As CFZM starts to rise up out of the mud, it begins to flutter up against JIB. This is not a"variable" rate propagation type of flutter.Instead it is  rock solid and is always  at "referenced rate " that is constant at around .5 seconds.My guess is that one of these guys is a few 10's of Hz off frequency, and causes this  interaction. (Any comments  ?).

  This Co channel  is always  fun , but a   challenge to null. The loop and the 803's ferrite ( X AND Y "origin" point)  both have to be in EXACT  position. 1/8 to 1/4 " fully makes or breaks Zoomer reception. It's really cool how tight it is.The Panasonic is tiny bit more forgiving due to a longer rod, but not by  much.

I doubt many folks can pull it out , at least in the immediate Boston area.

 I can only imagine how the big litz loop will play on this situation  and on other frequencies. Gotta finish the  "small" (16") "Test Bed" loop first,maybe this weekend (if my first "shot" on Friday doesn't make me sick).

Also noted KDKA, but not as good as the other night.The band seemed down a bit from earlier in the week.


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