Meteor M-N2 Images

Monday 22 December 2014


This year I decided to try some operating from our holiday location of Saas Fee in Switzerland (JN36xc, or so the app on my phone told me). I decided to only use WSPR and JT65 on the 40/20/17m bands. These are the bands that I have made loading coils for use with my PAC-12 vertical antenna.

20m WSPR

17m WSPR

Digital only because 5W from an FT817 doesn't go very far when surrounded by 4000m peaks on three sides as Saas Fee is.

It took me a while to make my first JT65 contact (on 17m) because at times the QRM on 20m was very high, with some specific QRM on the 17m JT65 frequency. I didn't track down the cause of the interference but I assume it was something in the village. When it was not present I received signals from Japan to south America as you can see from the PSKreporter screen shot below.

20m JT65 signals received in 30 minutes

20m JT9 received in the US
I was pleased to see that my JT9 signal was received in the US.

 40m WSPR reception was good around Europe.

My 40m WSPR signal was received in VK.

Despite calling CQ on JT65 and JT9 I only managed to make one JT65 contact, this seems odd to me given the fact that I could see that my signal was being logged on PSKReporter. I am happy that my antenna was working well based on its performance with WSPR.

Given the efficiency of JT65 I had assumed that it would be possible to make more contacts but I can only surmise that the reason I didn't was because of the following:
  • 2.5W is too low power
  • Other stations got confused by the different message format that JT65 generates when using a callsign prefix.
Given that the take off was shielded on three sides by 4000m mountains I am pleased with the receive performance of the PAC-12 antenna.

On one day I took the 817 out of the apartment and tried for some SSB contacts on 40m. The beauty of the location I was at is that at 2397m it was about 600m higher than Saas Fee and with a clearer take-off to the north. The noise figures on 40m here was S0 and there were many special event stations loud and clear. Unfortunately, they were generating pile-ups that I was not going to break through with 5W. I did have one contact into north Wales but it was hard going for the other station.

I would like to get my CW skills polished up so I can try some QRP CW for holiday operating, next year we are going on holiday to somewhere with a better take-off which might also help.

No comments:

Post a Comment