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Greetings from North of the border and many thanks to Essex Hams Pete M0PSX and all the team! (3 replies and 4 comments)

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2M0WKO
4 months ago
2M0WKO 4 months ago

I really must share my deep gratitude to the whole Essex Ham club (and the kind RSGB invigilator Dave M0OBW) for the great satisfaction I've had in exercising the grey matter and attaining the Foundation level Amateur Radio Licence!

I cannot ever remember ever getting 100% before, so when I saw all the ones down the right hand sign of the provisional results I was extremely pleased.

Though a lot more of the questions appeared to me less like the mocks than I thought they might be (by design one assumes), your clubs excellent training gave this applicant all the required skills to figure out the answers, so again, many thanks.

I'm moving straight on to Intermediate, and of course hope for success there too.

At the moment I have a little Baofeng GT-3TP, a 2m Slim Jim, and a very large 9m pole (I don't usually like to boast).  Works great.

I've now gone completely mental and bought a VHF/UHF Yaesu FTM-300DE, which apparently does all sorts of things I've barely ever heard of LOL.  I envisage a lot of youtube watching and so on when that gets here (no, I haven't told the wife yet).

Not sure if there's much chance of me directly achieving DX voice with Essex on the 2m Band barring some rare sporadic-E condition (I'll find a way via the internet too perhaps...), but once I get myself going on HF I'd certainly feel great making contact with my fellow HAMmers.

Thanks again, I've gone a bit verbose, but kind regards and all the best!

73

William M7WKM

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Peter M0PWX (2E0PWX)
4 months ago

well done Willian (M7WKM)

Pete and the team got my through my foundation in october, without them i probably wouldn't have done it

i can't get essex very well from my side of sheppey on VHF (may improve when i get the antenna a few meters higher)

https://gm6dx.thinkific.com/ is a great free site like essex ham for the intermediate exam, i used that and the RSGB intermediate exam manual and got 90% on my intermediate, its more theory and in depth on propagation, antennas, interference and more blocks for RX / TX and what they do

now working towards full license in march, that is a big step up in electronic / circuit theory, yet more detail propagation and antenna / feeders

for sporadic-e and meteor scatter info have a look at https://www.tvcomm.co.uk/g7izu/?page_id=498 its a useful site for meteor scatter and sporadic e conditions real time

also worth looking at pskreporter.com (even if you don't do digimode) as you can select 2m band signals sent / received by country of m7wkm and see if there are reports of FT8 or even MSK144 on 2m, if there are you might be lucky and get some DX traffic i have preset the link for it https://www.pskreporter.info/pskmap.html?preset&callsign=2e0pwx&what=country&band=75000000-160000000&timerange=900&obscure=0.2&distunit=miles&hideunrec=1&blankifnone=1&hidelight=1

you'll be surprised how often you see DX traffic, i pick up DX 2m FT8 traffic on SDR dongle several times a month with stations in NL, DE, ES, FR etc

also if you do have access to audio out for a PC on your ftm-300 the ISS broadcasts SSTV several times a year on 145.800 fm, you just need a SSTV decoder software on a pc like yoniq or mmsstv and a way of getting the audio into the pc (USB sound card about £10 are good), watch ariss on twitter for more details of when

lots of fun to be had even on VHF with amateur radio

i work HF digimode (15m-80m mainly ) 95% of time, but have a Baofeng UV5R and external antenna as well for a bit of more local fun now and again

peter

2E0PWX

 

 

 

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Peter M0PWX (2E0PWX)
4 months ago

speaking of ISS SSTV just seen this one http://ariss-sstv.blogspot.com/2021/01/mai-sstv-experiment-jan-28-and-29.html

end of the month the ISS will be TX SSTV images, you can also upload them the ARISS and request a certificate (i got one for the 20th anniversary over the xmas period)

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2M0WKO
4 months ago
2M0WKO 4 months ago

Hi Peter (2E0PWX),

Superb , thank you!

My lexicon grows daily.  I tried to listen to ISS previously with the Baofeng and didn't get anything (they were in data mode on the flyover, but I thought I might be able to hear it), will be retrying

I have the Intermediate Licence Manual as well, and have been using (96) Cornish Radio Amateur Club Training - YouTube too, which has very polished productions of electronics and other videos (big shout out), the presenter does a sterling job.  Have registered to 'get tae grips' on intermediate with GM6DX, looks excellent, thanks.

No idea how this will actually work yet, but the coming new rig has a digital C4FM transceiver which I can apparently use to access a Wires-X node with seemingly global reach, 2 miles from my location:  Repeaters & Gateways – WIRES-X.UK (wires-x.uk) .  This rig is my new VHF/UHF base station to start my Shack, and has the benefit of being mobile too.  Just so much experimentation to come!

Foundation reminds me a little of a provisional driving license (though at present our instructors aren't even occasionally in the car), and perhaps intermediate means I'll be better able to experiment more capably on my own; but even should I move on to the full license, I'm pretty sure I'll only then have taken a few baby steps in a gazillion hours of experimentation and discovery, which I'm enjoying!

Thanks for the great info and encouragement , and hope others can use the links etc.

73

William

(M7WKM)

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Peter M0PWX (2E0PWX)
4 months ago

if you want to get into HF on a budget, have a look at a Xiegu G90, its a 20w all mode HF (160-10m) for about £380, built in ATU that tunes just about a coat hanger :)

https://www.sinotel.co.uk/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=20&products_id=183

i get to brazil, US, all over EU, and occasional middle east on 20w with a homebrew fan dipole pinned to fence using FT8/FT4

on SSB you will get EU easily possibly further depending on the antenna

Avatar
Peter M0PWX (2E0PWX)
4 months ago

if you want to try HF you can get an SDR for recieve only, but make sure its one that can get below 24mhz, if not you will need one of the down converters but they tend to drift a lot so you need to find a frequency to calibrate against on each band (ft8 signals are good for that), also make sure it has SMA connectors (not the tiny MCX connector they are a pain to get adapter for)

software for Digi modes
fldigi (psk31, rtty, and various other modes)
mmsstv, yoniq, RX-sstv (analogue SSTV)
EasyPal (digital sstv)
JS8Call (free text digital comms)
orbitron (satellite position tracking)
CWGet (morse decoder)
FLRig (CAT / computer control of rig/radio)
WSTJ-X, (FT8,FT4,JT65, MSK144(meteor scatter), WSPR etc)
JT alert, (add on to WSJT-x provides info like worked station before, country of station etc)
WXtoImg (decode NOAA weather sat images on 137mhz)

loads to play with, most of that uses SSB even on vhf/uhf but most SDR go up to 1ghz so you can recieve easilly and see if you want to play TX later

Avatar
Peter M0PWX (2E0PWX)
4 months ago

when downloading ham software i tend to use link on hamsoft.ca, rather than the links from "free download manager" and the like which i suspect will try and temp you to download various "tune up, virus scanning rubbish" with expected result of needing to clean and possibly rebuild your computer

Avatar
Peter M0PWX (2E0PWX)
4 months ago

not sure whats happening on here, it repeated you post instead of adding my replies, so here are the replies in one :)

 

speaking of ISS SSTV just seen this one http://ariss-sstv.blogspot.com/2021/01/mai-sstv-experiment-jan-28-and-29.html

end of the month the ISS will be TX SSTV images, you can also upload them the ARISS and request a certificate (i got one for the 20th anniversary over the xmas period)

if you want to get into HF on a budget, have a look at a Xiegu G90, its a 20w all mode HF (160-10m) for about £380, built in ATU that tunes just about a coat hanger :)

https://www.sinotel.co.uk/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=20&products_id=183

i get to brazil, US, all over EU, and occasional middle east on 20w with a homebrew fan dipole pinned to fence using FT8/FT4

on SSB you will get EU easily possibly further depending on the antenna

if you want to try HF you can get an SDR for recieve only, but make sure its one that can get below 24mhz, if not you will need one of the down converters but they tend to drift a lot so you need to find a frequency to calibrate against on each band (ft8 signals are good for that), also make sure it has SMA connectors (not the tiny MCX connector they are a pain to get adapter for)

software for Digi modes
fldigi (psk31, rtty, and various other modes)
mmsstv, yoniq, RX-sstv (analogue SSTV)
EasyPal (digital sstv)
JS8Call (free text digital comms)
orbitron (satellite position tracking)
CWGet (morse decoder)
FLRig (CAT / computer control of rig/radio)
WSTJ-X, (FT8,FT4,JT65, MSK144(meteor scatter), WSPR etc)
JT alert, (add on to WSJT-x provides info like worked station before, country of station etc)
WXtoImg (decode NOAA weather sat images on 137mhz)

loads to play with, most of that uses SSB even on vhf/uhf but most SDR go up to 1ghz so you can recieve easilly and see if you want to play TX later
when downloading ham software i tend to use link on hamsoft.ca, rather than the links from "free download manager" and the like which i suspect will try and temp you to download various "tune up, virus scanning rubbish" with expected result of needing to clean and possibly rebuild your computer

 

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