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Re: Field Day weather/results



Wayne:

Great story. I was helping with the W3AO group (24A MDC). We
managed to work one on FO-20; one on FO-29; one on an FM
bird; and Susan on the ISS. We couldn't work any RS birds
because the 10M CW and Phone stations were killing our
receive, and AO-10 for us was only a 4 degree pass. We would
have had better luck on the Fuji birds if we could sync our
uplink/downlink. We would hear our CW coming back strong,
switch to LSB; lock the reverse tracking; tune to a station,
call, listening for our downlink, and it just wasn't there.

My question is about InstantTune. I had a lot of trouble
setting it up for FO-29. At first, I couldn't get it to even
talk to our FT-847 because it had been set for 9600 baud.
The settings were right but no comms. On Sunday AM I got it
talking at 4800 but it started out in the wrong mode (CW I
think) and at the end of the passband instead of the middle.
And when I tuned to mid-band, it kept changing the Tx
frequency back to the edge. I couldn't seem to find the
right combination of parameters.

So, can you tell me:

1. What were your IT params for the Fuji birds?
2. What rig were you using?
3. Do you think the RHCP antennas were an
advantage/necessity?

All in all, we had a ball. It was a great learning
experience. I'm really looking forward to AO-40 next year.

Thanks and 73,
Art N3OY

Estes Wayne-W10191 wrote:
> 
> Frank Grossman wrote:
> 
> ...avoid being foiled by the little-known Rule 10.0  "If there is
> no measurable precipitation at your FD site, multiply your score by 0 (Zero)
> to compute your final score."
> 
> Wayne replies:
> 
> Darn, I guess my Sat field day operation doesn't count.  The weather was
> PERFECT!  High temperatures of about 80F (27C), and lows around 58F (15C).
> Light winds, lots of blue sky, low humidity.  I was set up in a screen tent
> because the weather was so nice.  The operators of stations in trailers
> seemed kind of jealous.
> 
> I ran the satellite station for K9KM 2A IL.  The K9KM satellite station was
> a 1-man operation (me) for supplying equipment, setup, operation, and
> tear-down.  I also did a 3 hour shift operating an HF CW station.  The
> satellite operation was very successful, thanks to great weather, no
> equipment malfunctions, good food, and good satellite performance, including
> a nice AO10 perigee pass.  By the ARRL rules I made 52 contacts - 42 phone
> and 10 CW.  By AMSAT rules I made 59 contacts - 49 phone and 10 CW. I didn't
> even try the FM satellites.  I made contacts on FO20, FO29, RS12, and AO10
> plus my very first contact with ISS. The contacts were very evenly
> distributed among FO-20, FO29, RS12, and AO10.  I typically made 3 to 5
> contacts per LEO pass.
> 
> The Fuji satellites worked great, and it was wonderful to hear so much
> activity on them.  The 70cm downlink is nice because it's not plagued by
> terrestrial noise as much as 2m.  Signal strength varies dramatically during
> a pass with my RHCP antennas, but I could hear well about 3/4 of the time
> when the satellite was above 10 degrees.  I was using InstantTune to handle
> the Doppler tuning.  That makes a huge difference for me.  I find the Fuji
> satellites to be extremely difficult to use without auto Doppler tuning.
> 
> RS-12 was surprisingly good because 10m ionospheric propagation was poor
> during field day.  I had excellent 10m reception from an inverted Vee with
> the apex at 12 feet (3/8 wavelength high).  I'm glad I didn't bother with my
> 10m turnstile.  The only problem was that I would sometimes forget to steer
> the 2m transmit antenna because I could hear so well on the 10m inverted
> Vee.  I also got QRM when a nearby HF station transmitted on 15m.  Their
> antenna was only 50 feet away from mine.  I guess I need a 10m bandpass
> filter for the next field day.
> 
> I made 12 contacts on the AO10 perigee pass Sunday morning.  I couldn't hear
> when it rose to the west because of an S5 noise level on the western
> horizon.  The noise level was fine when AO10 rose above 30 degrees with
> about 40 minutes remaining in the perigee pass.  At first, signals would
> disappear for about 20 seconds at the bottom of each fade.  But by the time
> AO10 set at my location it was only about 6000 km away and I could hear
> stations even at the bottom of the fades (with a 14-el RHCP yagi and SSB
> preamp).
> 
> When setting up the satellite station, several people asked if I could
> contact the Space Station.  I had never tried before, and didn't even have
> the ISS frequencies with me.  One of the club members went home and looked
> up the frequencies on the web.  He came back about 5 minutes before an ISS
> pass.  I got through to Susan Helms NA1SS on the third call.  I had to
> repeat my class and section because Susan said I got "stomped on".  That's
> surprising because I was running about 500W ERP.  The ISS contact was
> definitely the highlight of this year's excellent Field Day.  I don't think
> Susan had the correct class for her station, though.  She said "1A Battery",
> but I don't think "A" is correct for battery power.  And I know her ARRL
> section isn't "battery".  I wonder if there is an ARRL section for "space"?
> 
> My vote for most-active sat stations that seemed to be everywhere all the
> time:
> K4BFT (5A AL)
> W4IY (9A VA)
> K7EFA (2A MT)
> 
> I want to thank all the other sat operators for making the contacts
> possible. I apologize if I stepped on a few people inadvertently.  In the
> heat of the action I was busy making contacts, not adjusting my power
> control.  Especially on the Fuji satellites where I get random deep fades
> with my RHCP antennas.  I'm already psyched up for next year's Field Day.
> It should be great with AO40's long access times and wide bandwidth.
> 
> Wayne Estes W9AE
> Mundelein, IL, USA
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