That was nice
40m took me 3 days but 80M went fairly quick. All bands except 160M (no antenne at the moment), all modes .
December was very quiet for DX’ing. We had a lot of gales up to 10 Bft so I lowered my antennes.
The 80M vertical (a flexpole) fell over but didn’t break. The pressure on the elements is so much that they go back inside the one below (hopefully this is clear when you know how the system works).
160M I didn’t even bother about to setup. The sun is very active and condx on 160M are very bad. So next year.
But now the DX is coming: EP6T. So I tuned my SteppIR to the band and measured SWR: it was off.
Calibrated and SWR was OK. Made qso. Changed band. SWR was off again. Calibrated. SWR ok.
I measured all the connections (Controller <> elements): all 20 ohm = OK.
I changed every single element (create, modify): all elements are moving in&out.
Reset to factory defaults: no improvement.
This SteppIR makes me crazy!
So for sale:
4 ele SteppIR 20M>6M with extra 6M option, new shoes, 20m controller cable, controller SDA 100, connection cable Kenwood. € 500 pickup price.
End of September and the start of October ZD9XF (G3TXF) was active.
There was a lot of QRN, the sun is quite active at the moment.
A small beverage helped to get the signals on 80M just above the qrn.
Also 8R1AE (JA1HGY) was worked on a few bands. But his schedule was a guess every day,
so I missed him on 80M. (160M antenna is still down, the horses of the neighbour are working on the grass now.)
C21GC (LZ1GC) was a single-handed expedition to Nauru.
It was not very clear to me when he was sleeping (if at all). His signal was on the band 24 hours round.
The qso on 10M was via longpath in the morning, very strange because that was the dark side of the earth at that time.
Some echo on his signal but readable. New bands 10/12/15 and 30M.
Another expedition to T30D gave me new ones on 15M and 12M
G3ZEM was in East Timor, single handed operation.
Nice qso”s but a lot of problems with QRN and deliberate QRM.
But still some nice new bands (40M)
VK3DLX was a big operation from Lord Howe.
Worked them on many bands with 12M and 80M for new ones
4W/K7CO worked in RTTY for a new one too.
VK9XSP was worked on 80M for a new one (and more bands)
ZK3E was worked on 15M for a new one, but I didn”t pay to much attention to this expedition.
Which was not right because they were worked in Europe on many bands.
You win some you loose some.
XX9R was worked for new on RTTY. But their signals were not strong and I think they had a lot of qrn/qrm.
The last expedition was FT4TA, Tromelin. A atno for me.
Pile-ups were huge but I managed to get them on many bands.
They are still on the Island so hopefully can work them on 20M&40M
but the deliberate qrm is immense, sign of the time I think.
More stations and new band/mode/slots were worked but these were the highlights.
A great month although qrn and qrm made it quite difficult sometimes.
There was a big opening on 2M to SW-France and North EA, end-of-year tropo.
But when I turned my antenne NE I worked ES3RF with great signals.
So never trust the cluster, use your ears!
After some very quiet months on HF and also VHF (6M & 2M: no Es whatsoever) this month started the season very well.
There were many IOTA-expedition and I worked quiet a few of them, nice one VK6ISL OC-294 and P29NI.
Missed ZL7X but VK9NT Norfolk Island was worked on 15M-12M-30M (I do not work already confirmed bands/slots so other people have a chance in the pile-up).
QSL on LOTW already OK.
Then Zorro E30FB showed up on his mission in Eritrea. He spent much more time on the bands then was announced, but the piles were hugh. Worked him on 15M SSB for a ATNO (317/322), will wait for the upcoming (announced) expedition to work other bands/slots. QSL already in via LOTW.
The Italian group always put up a big show, this year in Benin as TY1AA. On-line logging, really instant confirmation. Helps to cut down the safety-qso’s.
They worked a lot on 6M via TEP, but the prop never reached up to the Northpart of Holland.
However on 20 Sept. there was Es in Europe and the combination of TEP+Es gave me a good qso on 6M (SSB!).
80M was quit difficult due to the heavy QRN but OK just before the end of the exp.
4W6LU East Timor was worked on 40M&12M. QSL direct but seperate for SSB and CW each cost $$ so I wait for LOTW confirmation.
Prices for qsl are really going up these days as tariffs for mail are exploding in all countries (dus to less physical mail).
Then Nigel ZD9XF showed up. Huge pile-ups but excellent operator. On the low bands heavy QRN, on 40M and 80M is was nearly impossible to get the call right. At the end of the month static was down a little and a small beverage (50m) also helped to improve SNR. Worked Nigel on 80M on Sept. 29, just before he left the Island.
Christmas Island VK9AN: most slots were already worked but 80M was missing. On 26 sept I was the first to call him (I use RBN to check, is very helpfull!) and made the qso.
Some other nice qso’s were made on 80M: V31MA, PJ5/OL8R, PZ5AA.
No 160M vertical yet, it is to early in the season and QRN is to heavy. Maybe in October for the CQWW.
The last 24 hours good tropo. Always possible in this time of year with a big high-pressure area above Europe.
Stable conditions with real ducting through small channels.
Worked S51ZO and 9A1CAL, same as in 2012 (1000 km). Heard YU1EV but couldn’t qso with him.
This morning worked 3 x OE, 2 of them with 59+20 signals incredible.
Worked HA5OO in cw, he was calling cq a long time without takers. Typical ducting in a channel.
Worked 3 x OM, one with 10W (OM3CQF) in SSB.
And the last one on Sundaymorning was YL3AG! Different direction but suddenly also very strong.
Bought 6m pipe (3mm) in order to get my 30m/40m dipole a bit higher.
With the help of PA2DW we raised it last week.
Performance was OK, but although there was hardly any wind, slowly the mast began to work its way into a half-circle.
So the next morning we took it down again.
3 mm wall thickness and 48 mm diameter is not strong enough :-(
Today received my award for WAZ mixed and 5B WAZ mixed.
The 5B WAZ has 178 zones out of 200, which is quite difficult to achieve because 80M is included in 5B.
I ordered this award in December 2013 and only used Eqsl (AG) confirmations.
Follow up is more band WAZ including 160M and WARC.