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Re: Potato Masher!



AA9LC, gazehr@dave-world.net writes:

>  I enjoyed your article in the AMSAT Journal very much.  I'm a RS-12
>  "graduate" with a few contacts on other RS's , but never got active
>  above 2 meters yet.  I've been planning to get going on FO-20 and FO-29,
>  and then your article came in the mail.
>  
>  I've got a few questions and would be appreciate your thoughts.
>  
>  How much power are you using on the 2 meter uplink for the FO birsd?
>  I've got a ten watt multimode rig...would you guess that will work on
>  uplink with the Potato Masher (PM) antenna or do you suggest more power.

Grant,
10 Watts with my TPM works FB on FO-29 and RS-13 mode A, but I find I need
more for FO-20 below 40 degrees.  The antenna is only about 6 dB of gain.  For
FO-20 I usually run a small MIrage 2m amp that puts out about 50 W with 1 W
drive from my 2 m rig in the low power position.  For RS-15 I pump 100+ Watts
into it and sometimes get lucky and have a QSO (just sometimes). 
  
>  How about downlink?  Do you just run the 9913 coax to the receiver or
>  are you using a preamp anywhere along the way?

I have a preamp (an ARR) in the attic.  There is about 15' or so of 9913 to
the preamp and then about 50' to the shack.  The closer you can get to the
antenna, the better.
  
>  Do you know a source for RG-62A ?  (small amounts)?

Try guys around you or try techamerica.com.  Maybe somebody on the BB will
read this and send you some.  For 70 cm you only need less than a foot.
  
>  I've had a weather satellite station for many years and have built the
>  FODTRACK interface, so I can track automatically.  I could use a higher
>  gain antenna, but I like the simple approach and your antenna is
>  attractive for that reason.  I built some yagi's with PVC and wood
>  dowels for satellites years ago and they worked great.
>  
>  I'm looking for a 70cm multimode xcvr now.

I started out with a Hamtronics downconverter.  It worked great, especially
considering it was a $50 kit (factory built, they're only $109).  When I
decided I wanted to try AO-10, I bought an old IC-490A, which has also served
me well and I have a bunch of AO-10 contacts with 10 W (but not with the TPMs,
with bigger antennas).  There are often multi-mode rigs listed on qth.com and
ebay.com.

73, Jerry
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