April 20 Grayland, WA Ultralight DXpedition
Thanks to all who have commented on the unidentified 531-DU station heard on the SRF-T615 last Sunday at Grayland, Washington. Actually, for a one-night DXpedition this late in the season, the total results on the stock Sony SRF-T615 were much better than expected.
Checking into Room 10 of the Grayland Motel around 10:00PM, it was quickly apparent that this small room in the center of the building was far from an ideal DX location. Loud TV heterodynes covered the band, and QRM from wild weekend parties covered the audio frequencies. Serious consideration was given to taking some radios and a flashlight to the beach, prior to sunrise. Attempts were made to get some rest before 3 AM (1000 UTC), but whenever sleep was near, the QRM from Rooms 9 and 11 suddenly increased in intensity. Right up until 1200 UTC, the TP carriers (in between the TV heterodynes) were very anemic. 738-Tahiti was nowhere near audio level. It seemed like the trip would be a lesson in humility.
Suddenly around 3:15 AM (1015), everything seemed to change. Rooms 9 and 11 suddenly went quiet, with no more TV heterodynes (or loud AF QRM). The Japanese powerhouses (594, 693, 747, 774 and 828) suddenly boomed in like locals, with the Koreans (972 and 1566) following them. Just before sunrise, VOA-1575 in Thailand made an appearance. Despite the shaky start, the logbook was filling up with stock SRF-T615 TP receptions, and various mp3 recordings were made. It turned out to be a very exciting and successful Dxpedition, even if the 531-DU station didn't ID, during the 5 minutes the SRF-T615 received it.
The final Ultralight TP log, all on the stock SRF-T615 was
531 UNID Looping DU direction, fair audio (repeated songs with no breaks), heard at 1308, gone by 1315
594 JAPAN Tokyo JOAK strong Japanese talk 1245
693 JAPAN Tokyo JOAB fair with NHK program 1220
747 JAPAN Sapporo JOIB fair with Japanese talk in KXL-750 slop, 1122
774 JAPAN Akita JOUB extremely strong with Japanese talk and TIS signal, 1200
828 JAPAN Osaka JOBB weak audio at 1050, strong NHK program at 1215
972 S. KOREA Dangjin HLCA fading in shortly after the Japanese with Korean conversation, 1236
1566 S. KOREA Jeju HLAZ good signal with FEBC Japanese-language program, 1239 (mp3 recorded)
1575 THAILAND Ban Rasom VOA briefly fading in with Asian language program around sunrise, 1246
Two ICF-2010's were used as "spotting receivers," one a stock unit, and one having a 19.5" transplanted loopstick. The "monster 2010" was responsible for catching the DU opening at 1303 (with weak audio on both 531 and 612), when the stock unit had only weak carriers.
73, Gary DeBock
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