Fixing PI3ASD interference

Santino (PD8S) called me to help Ā sorting out a problem at the new PI2ASD and PI3ASD repeaters. PI3ASD is causing interference on a TELE2 microwave link. Tough this link works on 13 GHz, the modulator has a baseband working on 140 MHz +/- bandwidth. The PI3AMS repeater is just in the middle of that band, transmitting at 145.7750 MHz. Inteferance was caused by RFI in to the coax and direct RFI into there baseband modulator. The fix was to move the antenne a few meters away from TELE2’s equipment. Too bad they used wrong frequencies they shoudn’t use and it was costing me allmost a full day of labour.

PI3ASD

PI1AMS view

The view from PI1AMS, DMR-repeater Amsterdam.

PI1AMS-view

Car burglary

I’m going to miss you, Hytera X1P šŸ™ Bastards!

car-burglary

HAMNET Netherlands kick-off

Last week we had a nice meeting about the roll-out of HAMNET in the Netherlands. Attendees were Paul (PE1RJV), Lucas (PD0LVS), Rob (PE1CHL) and me. We all have our specialties when it comes to networking, IP, DNS, etc. With this small team we should be able to make fast progress… We already found a network provider to announce the 44.137.0.0/16 IP-prefix as well the interlink from their datacenter in Amsterdam to a location in Hilversum. From that location, point2point links canĀ be created. The link Hilversum – Utrecht, Hilversum – Amsterdam en Amsterdam – Alkmaar are the most obvious ones to start with. To be continued…

Meeting where the PI2NOS repeater is located

Meeting where the PI2NOS repeater is located

Going Anderson PowerPole

I’m changing the default 12VDC connector from banana jack to Anderson PowerPole. No more soldering or even worse: screwing high current power connectors. The new default is Anderson PowerPole crimp connectors. To support a transfer phase I’ve created a PowerPole to Banana jack cable this morning capable of running 30 Amps of power at 12 Volts. For mobile use there are factory assembled sigarette to powerpole adapters availlable ready to flow 20 Amps at 14 Volts.

powerpole2 powerpole1

Worked last state (Wyoming)

Worked-All-States-mapYesterday evening I managed to work the last state to achieve the Worked All States Certificate: Wyoming. I had a JT65 QSO with Jackie, N7MJ on the 17-meters band.

He already confirmed the QSO via Logbook of the World (LoTW) so my certificate is requested. I only used a magnetic loop antenna.

The current WAS status can be seen top-right of my blog or colored via an interactive map on the certificate page. Next is to go for triple-play WAS, so I have 26 states to go in SSB and CW and 3 in DIGI.

Going topbands with new loop

MLA-TI like my I3VHF loop, like Wimo sells it as Baby loop. It has full coverage between 6,5 and 30 MHz and provides me with the 40, 30, 20, 17, 15, 12 and 10 meter band. I can work around the world in digimode (JT65) with it and there aren’t many day’s I can’t work Japan or the States. Even worked Australia and New Zeeland with it. I’m only missing the 160 and 80 meter band.

I don’t expect to go around the world with the new loop, sold as MLA-T and manufactured in BTV in Czech but it should give me lots of DXCC points throughout Europe and it would be great if it could go across the Atlantic to the United States, Canada and some Latin-America countries.

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One state left for WAS

Today I was giving CQ on 15M via JT65. Kevin, KH6KX, answered my call from Hawaii, one of the two missing states for my Worked All States certificate. It’s nice to see he’s using a Buddypole antenna while I’m using a Magnetic loop. Tough not bad, both areĀ knitting needles compared to yagi’s.

KH6KX

Hawaii is in. As state and as DXCC. Thanks Kevin! Now one more state left and that’s Wyoming.

New Bird attenuator

Bird_100-SA-MFN-30Today, my new attenuator arrived. The old home-brew unit wasn’t really suitable to do measurements on 150 MHz and above. This Bird is suitable till 6 Ghz and has a -30 dB attenuator (the old one had a -40 dB att.).

The type is 100-SA-NFM-30 and documents can be found on the Bird website. By accident I found this one on Ebay for only $50.- including shipping costs and taxes.

Now, the only thing missing in my lab is a VSWR-bridge. I’ve ordered theĀ Rigol DSA-VB1020 and this should arrive soon.

PA6TX confirmed during IOTA contest

PA6TXIn 2013 we activated the island of Texel (EU-038) during the RSGB IOTA weekend in July. This year, in 2014, we will return with better equipment and more operators. This year we will use PA6TX as callsign. More info will follow soon. Meanwhile:Ā qrz.com/db/pa6tx.

Confirmed operators:Ā PA4RVS, PH4X, PD0LVS, PD1JFB
Confirmed guests: DL1KVN

Logs will be uploaded to both LoTW and to eQSL at the end of the contest. QSL to the bureau via PD0LVS.

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QSL from Gibraltar

Gibraltar (DXCC 146 on the most wanted list) is confirmed as of today on the 10-meter band in CW.

ZB2FK

The lazy SWL

LoTWFor some weeks now I notice I get more and more SWL reports from the JT65 QSO’s. Guess JT65-HF is the new skimmer, automatically collecting QSO’s for the SWL. Today it became even more frustrating, receiving an e-mail with ‘PDF QSL card’ and the request to send a card back via direct mail. How about no?

I stopped sending out paper QSL cards long time ago. If I want your card, I’ll send direct. If you send me yours via the bureau, I’ll answer via the bureau, tough Logbook of the World is preferred. But I will never answer these kinds of request, neither SWL reports collected by automatic skimming software via eQSL.cc.

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Welcome in the WPX Honor Roll

WPX-MixedI noticed that I’ve reached 600 different call prefixes so far. While 400 is enough to get your WPX-certificate in the Mixed category (I don’t have one, DXCC is much cooler), with 600 different prefixes you’ll enter the WPX Honor Roll.

And that’s a nice signal to receive: get listed with the other ‘top’ stations in the world. Not that I am one with my limited antenna set-up (Magnetic loop for 6,5-30 MHz.) but still…

Now let’s work towards theĀ WPX Award of Excellence and get 1000 prefixes. Oh no, can’t. I dont have an antenna for the topbands 80 and 160 meters šŸ™‚

And thats DXCC 125 confirmed

AndorraDirect QSL today. C31CT confirmed his 3 QSO’s on 3 bands in 2 modes. That makes the 125th confirmed DXCC. Tough I’d rather see a LoTW confirmation it’s nice to see the numbers rising. Now let’s work towards 150. The QSO’s are already Ā made, but 26 DXCC is still unconfirmed.

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Build your own Hytera cable

Hytera_MD785GWhen you own a Hytera DMR transceiver you need an optional cable costing 35 euro to program your transceiver and/or to upgrade the firmware. Ā In my opinion, programming cables should never be an option. You can spend the 35 euro to buy one, or spend about 5 euro to make one yourself.

The self-build version had one big advantage above the commercial one: it fits in the back of the transceiver so no need to change the microphone every time you want to program an extra channel.

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