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I am one inexperienced newbie on the satellites.  I am just trying to learn 
how to use them and need some advice from the gray-hairs.

As I have related, I first used the FM satellites with a 3 watt handheld, 
and was able to make nice contacts when I slipped a word or two in-between 
guys that might be using a bit more.  When I bought my FT-847, I admit that 
I pushed more like 10 watts into the antenna, and (shame on me) it made it a 
lot easier to be heard.  Fewer of the stations stepped on top of me.  I got 
my 2-3 contacts in and left the rest of the pass to others.

That is mostly in the past, because I am mainly interested in the analog SSB 
birds right now.  Because I am used to using about 50 W on HF, and the 
signals from the FO birds sound weak, I have been using 50 W on FO-20 and 
FO-29.  Funny thing, my signal sounds nice and clear when the bird is a 
thousand miles away on the horizon, but it sounds terrible when above 30 
degrees elevation (and is a lot closer.)

This puzzled me.  Then I think I began to understand.  I believe (but have 
not yet tested it by dropping to 5 watts or so when the bird is well above 
the horizon) that I may be overdriving the receiver on the bird and it can 
not send me a reasonable signal back.  I hear myself, but the signal is 
clipped and sounds like I have not found the right receiving frequency.  But 
there seems not to be ANY right recieving frequency.

If I am overdriving the bird and disrupting my received signal, I may have 
been causing the other ops in the pass band to have degraded received 
signals as well. If I am at fault for disrupting your conversation over the 
last week or so, I appologize.

Maybe some of the fades we hear on the bird are not due to rotation and 
phase change.  Maybe some of them could be due to inexperienced ops like 

Mea Culpa.  I will change my operating to much lower powers.

WS8G (Rick)
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