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Re: AO40 downlink signal strength

Ed Krome wrote:

> Don't be paralyzed! My little survey of first day AO40 users yielded a
> surprising number of unmodified Drakes (~3+ db NF) parked behind barbeque
> grill dishes that did just fine. Yes, the UEK3000SAT is a tiger and there
> were a few behind tiny 16 turn helix's. But there were a LOT of Drakes,
> Transystems, DEMI's, homebrews, oddballs, what have you. 
> As the commercial says "just do it".

This is the theme we've heard from Ed... "Mode S, The Book" rocks, by 
the way.

....and also from James G3RUH in **1992** while P3D was still a gleam in 
a lot of people's eyes

  "Mode S - Tomorrow's Downlink?"


This is still very well-worth reading.

If that doesn't get you going, inspiration can also be drawn from some 
of Laura VE7LDH's writing, specifically "They Never Told Me Not To: an 
innocent is seduced by centimeter waves"


All these words...but people, it's not really hard.

I bought a Millicom (which is a pre-modified Drake, the scary stuff 
already done) from Mark N0NSV, bolted it to a piece of 1" PVC pipe, 
poked the N-connector through a hole in a 6" hexagon of aluminum sheet 
for a reflector, wrapped 14ga copper wire around the pipe following 
Jerry K5OE's 16-turn helix design, stuck it on the end of a totally 
skanky 75' run of RG-58-U from RatShack, and fastened the whole mess to 
my elevation rotor boom with conduit clamps. 12V supply up the coax from 
my FT-847 and it's good to go.

It works. I had a blast working 5 people on AO-40's first day, and would 
have worked a whole lot more if I'd actually known what I was doing. :-)

You can do it too...don't wait to make it perfect; it won't be. But 
there's apparently a *wide* range between "perfect" and "good enough".

73 de Maggie K3XS

-----/___.   _)   Margaret Stephanie Leber    / "The art of progress  /
----/(, /|  /| http://voicenet.com/~maggie   / consists of preserving/
---/   / | / |  _   _   _    `  _AOPA 925383/ order amid change and /
--/ ) /  |/  |_(_(_(_/_(_/__(__(/_  FN20hd / change amid order."   /
-/ (_/   '  K3XS  .-/ .-/    ARRL 39280   /___ --A.N.Whitehead ___/
/____ICQ 7161096_(_/_(_/__AMSAT 32844____/ <maggie@voicenet.com>

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