Again tropo

Day in day out we are in the fog. Visibility 200 m or less.
Highpressure is steady and creating an inversion in temparature and humudity.
The inversion is small, more like a duct or a tunnel.
Signals from the East are stronger in G than in PA.

Oct 23 and Nov 1

23-10 919 EA1MX
23-10 950 EA1DR
23-10 957 F8GGD
23-10 1009 F1NZC
23-10 1011 SP1JNY
23-10 1501 F5LNU
23-10 1511 EA2AWD
23-10 1512 EA2EGM
23-10 1536 F6DRO
23-10-2015 1554 F6CIS
23-10 1608 F1MOZ
23-10 1610 EA1BA
23-10 1620 EA1HRR
23-10 1631 F4KIR
23-10 1641 F5XU
23-10 2025 9A1CMS
23-10 2053 OK2WO
24-10 821 OK1TEH
31-10 915 OH1ND
31-10 1312 LY5G
1-11 2102 LY2WR
1-11 2200 UA2FT
1-11 2218 R2FAD

super tropo opening

Never in my life had this experience of this super tropo opening. Every year there is a big opening in autumn, but this year was really HUGE.

Luck was with me, the duct (inversion) was in line with me, from West to East.

On Oct. 1 worked from YL & LY up to EI, GI and GD.
On Oct. 2 worked many more stations from SP, LY and then also EU/EW and UA3!
Sometimes weak signals (UA3XX: 1955 km) but sometimes like local stations (RA3LBW in cw&ssb).

I was giving cq all the time and that attracted a lot of dx stations who were not calling cq themselves.
Because the pile-up would have been to big.

All in all I made over 90 qso in those 2 days, and worked 16 countries.

Es season

Much more Es on 4M and 2M in this season than last year for me.
No wonder, last year 0 (zero) openings on 2m :-(

I even worked a new square on IT9, first new one since 2 years I think.
And a lot of countries on 4M, only 25W here but with Es it is enough now 24 countries including SV9, CU3 and EA8 which must be double-hops.

But the best qso on 2M was last week, just after the aurora finished I worked SM2CEW (KP15) on 2M in cw.
At first a weak signal but later a real 55n, no AU distortion. Auroral Es, IONO, or whatever. Nature has its magic!

The new antenne UB-50 works good on 6M, I made some qso’s on other bands but not enough yet.
SWR is low on all bands even 40M although the maximum elevation is only 14M.
But no experience yet on take-off and power in the pile-up when DX-season starts.

New antenne for HF and 6M

I was still having troubles with my SteppIR 4 ele so I sold it.
And bought the UB50 from Ultrabeam, going from 40M to 6M.

It is a 3 elements on 20M-10M and 5 ele on 6M (add-on kit).
So I loose some gain compared to the SteppIR.

Getting the system up was quite a task, because of the closed elements.
You have to assemble all 3 poles at the same time which makes it more sdfficult than the individual poles of the SteppIR.
But this solution works technically much better on 30M/40M than the SteppIR-banana element.

Thanks to my buddy’s Jaap (PA0T) and Rinus it is up now.
Coming days start tuning and getting ready for Es season and later this year some new AT NO’s i hope.

UB50 5wl for 2M and 4 ele LFA for 4M

On the pic you see UB50, 5 wl for 2m and 4 ele LFA for 4M


That was nice

40m took me 3 days but 80M went fairly quick. All bands except 160M (no antenne at the moment), all modes .

ScreenHunter_61 Jan. 26 21.23

I’m done with my SteppIR

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.

October DX

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.

ZD9XF, September/October 2014

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.)


8R1AE October 2014

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.

C21gc in October

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)


4W/G3ZEM in October

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!


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