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Poor Man's Receive Check-Out

I finally have all the pieces of an AO-40 receive path:

- Primestar Dish, 6 turn helical feed (correct  direction)
- DEM Preamp (built per instructions)
- DEM 2400-144RX Downconverter (built per instructions with additional IF
gain stage)

The feed to pre-amp to downverter are connected directly using N-couplers.

....and I'll use a VR-500 to listen. I plan to take a quick look at this
afternoon's pass on the east coast (~3pm local)

Based on a quick look on the schedule and archives, I'm looking for the
higher of the two beacons (2401.3xx), correct? LSB or USB?

Besides the "sun noise test", is there any cheap and/or simple way I can
verify the entire system works with minimal test equipment (DVM, 2 GHz
counter, etc)
I have what I would call "above average" construction skills, and the kits
seemed to check out per the limited checks provided by DEM in the
documentation, but I am still unsure?

I have a tree line behind the house -- should I fine a clear horizon or will
this be fine just to verify things?

Based on the shape, I'm guessing that the Primestar dish is slightly
"offset", like a DSS dish, with the "aiming axis" above the feed?


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