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Messages - Ed H

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22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Poor conditions, interference
« on: August 07, 2017, 2140 UTC »
Hi Folks,

Monitoring this past 5th 6th August, showed very weak conditions. A feint spectrogram trace of signals in the 13,555.xxx mini band, not readable.

Often I am getting a rapid repeating swept signal. It passes through the 22m band perhaps 2x per sec, and has a swept range of at least 100 kHz. Signal strength is up to S7 at times, but has characteristics suggesting it is reaching me as a skywave. Any ideas? This emission precludes any weak signal work, as one might imagine. It isnt CODAR as we get that too sometimes.



22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: GNK and K6FRC
« on: July 25, 2017, 2048 UTC »
July 22 and 23, ~6pm PST Caught a few signals on Spectrogram in the 13,555.xxx zone, including NC and possibly EH. On the 23rd also GNK further up the band. No sign of any closer stations.

Setup was with random dipole and Lowe HF225 receiver.

22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: Some unknown quanties
« on: May 31, 2017, 2119 UTC »
Interesting Tesla, I have heard similar signals before. Semi regular "chirpy" tones?


22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: PVC loop aerial experiments.
« on: May 31, 2017, 2117 UTC »
I have persistent signals in the 13,560 to 13,562 range, that I think comes along with the cable TV lines or other utilities. Wandering locally with a portable radio suggests a large number of things using the 22 m  ISM band, radiating intentionally or unintentionally over short ranges, usually within a quarter mile.

PVC is back on it's rooftop 1/4 wave dipole for the time being. I will retune the loop and reconnect again soon. Updates in this thread.



22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: FL beacon 13555.520 KHz CW
« on: May 27, 2017, 1450 UTC »
Thanks Dag...

I realised it must be you shortly after posting. Hopefully will get some listening time soon.

NC reaches California regularly, I am sure FL has a chance.

Best regards,


22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: FL beacon 13555.520 KHz CW
« on: May 26, 2017, 1817 UTC »
Thanks for the info Dag. Nice to see another beacon pop up - I'll listen out.

Do also check the HiFER page at LWCA.org as there are several members that listen and would have a good chance of catching your FL.

FYI there is another operator listed on 13,555.465 kHz using FL.



22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: PVC loop aerial experiments.
« on: May 26, 2017, 1812 UTC »
Thanks for keeping an ear on it! I may need to retune the loop. PVC is back on the dipole until I can attend to matters.

I do want to spend more time using it for listening as well. It is excellent, especially considering it's size!

22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / PVC loop aerial experiments.
« on: May 17, 2017, 1846 UTC »
I have been doing some tinkering with loop aerials lately. The present example is approximately 12 ft of #12 solid wire on a square frame of white PVC pipe. Some experimentation a receiver noise bridge enabled a coupling loop to be configured so that a 50 ohm impedance is presented to the coax. A ceramic bodied 15-150 pF trimmer at the top of the loop permits tuning from ~6 MHz to ~15 MHz and is the only purchase made specifically for the project. For the latest experiments, the loop was suspended from a tree, borrowing the feeder for my long-wire. This disposition is somewhat close to the house, and not especially "out in the clear", but does allow the loop tuning to be trimmed, which is quite demanding on account of the sharp peak, and the need to use a long trimmer tool so as to minimise one's influence on the loop due to stray capacitance. The loop was tuned in situ, on transmit, using a small portable receiver to detect peak output.

Experiment 1: Receive
In this endeavour, I compared the loop against the "random wire dipole" that has become the de facto standard for 22m HiFER reception. Firstly, I noticed a higher (atmospheric) noise floor against the dipole. Not much man made "hash" that I could identify. Attention turned to the cluster of signals around 13,555.+++ kHz (though I did try the top and bottom of the bands as always). The dipole showed some activity from both SIW stations, and IIRC WM. See the http://lwca.org/sitepage/part15/index.htm website for details. Switching to the loop brought traces that were obviously a continuation, but would be hard to have logged without the previous observations.

I decided to experiment with feeding PVC's signal to the loop, to compare the received signal at the receive dipole with the numbers I see from PVC's usual (separate) dipole. I'd played before (indoors) and seen S9 +30 dB, now, curiously, the signal was swinging (hint) from barely S9 to S9 +20 dB. Then I realised the swing had a fairly consistent period/time constant. I visited the loop and saw the issue immediately. With a little stabilisation (another piece of string) I arrested the twisting motion. Also, I arranged the loop so that in theory, it's pattern should match the direction of the dipole. Result: S9 +30 dB and steady, very similar to the dipole.

Return to receive:

The re-oriented loop showed improved sensitivity to the HiFERs that could also be seen with the dipole. It would be instructive to monitor both simultaneously, as an A/B comparison is at the mercy of the short timescale variations in propagation. However, the loop's performance is very encouraging, especially considering its compact size. It might be expected that better results could be obtained with improved siting. The dipole against which the comparison took place has it's apex in a tree at ~20 ft and the ends > 6 ft above ground. By contrast the loop center was perhaps 6 ft above ground, but further down the hill, and potentially affected by other nearby structures - quite a disadvantaged site in my opinion.

This work provides anecdotal evidence to support the enthusiasm for tuned loops that I have seen from a significant number of credible internet sources. Attention to a few details appears to show that these aerials are suitable for aspects of HiFER work. One aspect that has not been addressed is the desire/requirement to adjust tuning remotely for easy optimisation, and convenient use on a wider range of frequencies. This is under consideration at present.

PVC is transmitting from the loop this week, so reports from 13,558.400 would be very welcome.



22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: PCO new id
« on: May 17, 2017, 1839 UTC »
Thought I heard GNK briefly this Sunday, but nothing I could confirm.

The visual receive signals near 13,555.xxx were coming in but very weak. I had fun A/B testing a loop antenna on receive with these signals. Comparison was against my "random" dipole. Still it is more fun to hear things.


22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: PCO new id
« on: May 13, 2017, 0702 UTC »
Hi Tesla,

listening when I can. Your signal makes it to CA many times when conditions allow.



Thanks Tesla!

22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: GNK and K6FRC
« on: April 20, 2017, 2003 UTC »
PVC restored to operation ~1am this morning. I had indeed forgotten to restart it after listening... Need a sign for this on the desk or door of the "Shack"

22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: GNK and K6FRC
« on: April 19, 2017, 2303 UTC »
nice report tesla,

I'm not sure of PVC status, as I've been away for a few days. Hope I remembered to turn on again after weekend listening...

Alas GNK, often heard, was not apparent on this occasion (Sat 15th or Sun 16th April), nor AA0RQ.


HF Beacons / Re: D Beacon 13527.7 CW 1627 UTC 26 Feb 2017
« on: March 24, 2017, 2303 UTC »
Thanks for this update. I'll relay the info to the folks over at LWCA.org. There is a HiFER reporting message list on their site, and "D" had come to attention.



22 Meter Band HiFER Beacons / Re: AA0RQ running fast
« on: March 23, 2017, 1825 UTC »
Aha! trying to catch us out to see if we're really listening  ;)

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