Saturday, August 6, 2022

Difference in 6m propagation

6m propagation can be very sporadic and very specific. Even a few kilometers/miles can make a huge difference. Besides that type and height of antenna is important. I only use a 5 element directional antenna on 6m at a height of about 14m. So far I think I do very reasonable. But today I saw many stations around me in the Netherlands making QSOs to the USA and Mexico. I didn't see anything from that direction at that time. So I decided to monitor since sometimes propagation is getting to a specific area in waves. I wrote about that before. The only problem is that it's like I'm always just a few meters from the surf. The difference between me and some other DXers in JO33 is sometimes large and very frustrating, To compare here are some pictures:

This is what I received this evening. Started monitoring around 17:30 UTC. In the end I received some from the west-coast and one station from Mexico.

To compare:

PA0O is a neighbour station about 20km south-west from my QTH also in JO33. I believe Jaap is using a 7 element monoband beam on about 20m height. He was heard in Hawaii with a strong signal. It is unknown to me if he worked Hawaii.

PE5T is a well known DXer at about 50km west from me also in JO33. According to his QRZ page using a 6 element monoband beam. Height is unknow but I think it is also about 20m heigh.

Top DXer PA5Y I think is one of the strongest and most fanatic 6m DXers from my country at the moment. From his QRZ page I think he is using a 7 element at 20m height. I know he managed a QSO with Hawaii this evening.

This kind of propagation is unexpected. Last year we had almost no DX at all on 6m. Very interesting to notice this. At the time I finish this post I still see contact made between Europe and USA and surrounding countries, although I only see some USA stations very sporadic and very weak. I wonder if next year 6m DX can be worked even later? 

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Reminder.... comments on blogger


Just to remind most bloggers using blogspot there is some kind of an "error" in the comments section. Actually it has to do something with 3rd party cookies, probabely a strict rule in the USA.  Wrote about it before a couple of weeks ago:

This means that most of our blogger friends can't receive comments on their blog. The "learn more" link in the error message will lead you to solutions that only the owner of the blogspot can change.

It is so unfortunate because comments on a blog post are invaluable!

PSE fellow bloggers change your comments configuration so there are more possebilities to post a comment.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

VarAC 15m activity day review

 Irad 4Z1AC the developer of VarAC invited all VarAC users to take part in a QSO party/activity day on 15m today. Unfortunately the propagation was not really the best. But VarAC is capable of decoding very low signals. I was testing the newest version 5.0.2 which has an ingenious slotted CQ feature.

You can click on the picture for a more detailed one to read about VarAC slots. I think it is well made and thought over. The slot sniffer is real handy to see if a slot is empty. 

I stopped monitoring now, I don't expect any propagation rise after sunset. This are todays results with ZR6WT as best distance (9000km). 

I only made a few QSOs:

The only real QSO was with Keijo OH2CBE, although signals were weak there was no problem to have a chat. Other contacts were just PING connects exchanging reports sometimes from me, sometimes from the other station.

Although propagation was not really good it was fun. Hope there will be another activity day in the future to test things.