Sunday, March 29, 2015

From 10 Meter Beacons to QSO's, JT9 & JT65 Waterfall Successes

Digital Weekend JT9 & JT65
We had another beautiful weekend here in Southern Oregon. It's very hard to stay indoors when the weather peaks in the mid 70's and it's full of sunshine. The forecast for the first part of this week is an abrupt cool down with some snow returning to the high ground. But the worst we saw at our hillside QTH was a bit of rain but it was short lived.

I figured out my low power issue when using WSJT-X. It happened to be an audio level in one of my input lines. So, I'm back in full 5 watt QRP business doing the digital modes. I started out working a bit of 20 meters but after hearing a few stations on 10, not to mentioned several beacons, it possessed me to string up my 10 meter EndFedZ inside the house. It was later in the day but I managed my first 10 meter QSO's from this QTH. 

Hamspots for AK7DD
When you run QRP and operate with an indoor antenna, you're at the mercy of the propagation. I've always enjoyed 10 meters as you can work the world with pretty much any setup. Weak signal software gives you a bit of an edge and I took advantage of it today. I was excited to see I had a path (unobstructed for the most part) to the north and south pacific. I was not able to make any CW contacts but I'm hopeful it won't be long before that happens.  The JT65 signals I had copied sure looked promising earlier in the day. My indoor antenna for 10 meters had a bit higher SWR (2:1) but that's to be expected. I have it sloping from the upstairs stairway down into the shack. The tuner in my Icom IC-703+ made short work of it and made the rig happy with a near flat match. End result was a few more QSO's in the logbook and hopefully more to come. I'm getting itchy to get back on the key before I forget how to mentally decode CW. I'm still sizing up the property on what antenna's I can possibly put up outside. Not sure my Hexbeam will make it up but at the very least, I need to get a few wires strung through the trees. 

4 comments:

  1. Hi Phil! Just got JT65 up and running at my QTH 2 weeks ago, but have barely used it. Been messing around with DM780 on PSK31 and Feld Hell most. Also, been experimenting some with the SIM PSK program. I downloaded WSJT-X just this evening and still have a lot to learn before I install it and set it up. Want to give JT9 a try myself! I've been staying on digi modes the past 2 weeks, but I did manage to get 15 QSOs in last weeks SKCC SKS. When you get ready to start tapping the key again drop me a line/email! Would love to have another CW QSO with you! I'm glad to know that you're having fun! Ever since I beat stage 3 multiple myeloma 8 years ago I have the attitude to enjoy each and every day like it's going to be my last on Earth and I sure am having a lot of fun! Very 73!

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  2. Cliff, you betcha! Yes, I miss CW and have just been playing with JT9 and JT65 to get an idea of my propagation paths. I hope to be in the next WES and will sure look for you!! So glad to read your last sentence and I wish you many more years and good health and great QSO's!!!

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  3. Wow, you made it to Japan with QRP and indoor antenna I thought. But then realized Japan is not that far away from you.and only water in between. Glad you enjoy the radio this way and still hope we can make a QSO some day. 73, Bas

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  4. Bas, made me laugh actually. Yes, like when I was in Alaska, Pacific is a walk in the park. Europe and Africa could be tough with the eastern wall of callers in a pile-up. I'm hoping to work PE4BAS QRP with my set up here! ;0)

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