Re: Tecsun PL-360 7.5" Plug-in Loopstick Project Update

Gary DeBock

Hi Stephen (and Tony),
As Tony related, it would be tough to receive 1134-Croatia on the west coast if they are not transmitting :-) Their new hours (1600-2245 Z) certainly don't sound good for west coast DXers!
As far as your chances to receive DX on 1134 kHz with your pest 1130-KSDO only 6 miles away, unfortunately it's probably a long shot at best. Unless you are able to null the station and still face the bearing of 300 degrees (for TP's) or about 040 (for TA's), you are probably out of luck.
Trying to receive TA's on the west coast using ULR's is not easy, except for the super-stations like 1134-Croatia (previously), 1575-Farda and 1215-Absolute. Trying to receive any other TA's on the west coast with Ultralight radios is really going "against the grain," and requires some serious external antenna help. I was able to receive 675-Radio Maria (Holland), 693-BBC and 756-DLF (Germany) last fall using the 9' PVC loop in the back yard, but signals were typically like this 693-BBC recording on Oct.21:  On the other hand, TA super-stations like 1134-Croatia would really boom in at times, like on this recording of Oct. 15: .
As tough as it is to receive TA's on Ultralights on the west coast, it is even tougher to receive TP's on Ultralights on the east coast. The only DXer I know who has accomplished this was Brent Taylor during a DXpedition on Canada's Prince Edward Island, receiving several Japanese "big guns" (747 and 774 kHz?) using a humble Sony SRF-59, inductively coupled to a Radio Shack loop. 
73, Gary
  In a message dated 5/16/2010 4:54:47 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, pianoplayer88key@... writes:


Do I have any chance here in San Diego to get that station on 1134? I have a local 10kW on 1130 (KSDO) that's 6.33 miles away at a heading of 350.03°, so that may pose a bit of a challenge. A few barefoot signal readings in 1kHz BW, while facing KSDO's transmitter, are: 1130-1131=63dBu, 1132~50-54, 1133-1135~38-51, 1140~38-51, at which point the chatter starts to quiet down. On 1141 it's 37-39dBu with some chatter but not nearly as much as on 1140, on 1142 there's little bits of chirps here and there at 37dBu, 1143 is fairly quiet with about 35dBu.
Also what about the TPs on 747 and 774? I have a local 50kW nighttime KFMB on 760 7.3 mi away, heading 320.65°, which is giving me readings of 39dBu on those frequencies. I also have yet to log the TP on 594, thanks in part to 600 KOGO, whose 5kW IBOC signal, 7.72 mi @ hdg 249.21°, is 34dBu.
Are there any TPs or TAs I should try for barefoot with the somewhat high RF here? Before I got the PL-380 and was trying a couple other radios, I remember I had the G8, and some of the local signals were indicating upwards of 75-80dBu on their assigned frequencies. I kinda wish the PL-380 wasn't limited to indicating 63dBu, as I have several stations that indicate that here.

--- In ultralightdx@..., D1028Gary@... wrote:
> Thanks Tony,
> Your 7.5" plug-in loopstick package is traveling faster than expected,
> considering that it's a weekend with NHL playoff distractions :-) A Monday
> arrival would be great.
> Yes, 1134-Croatia made a few booming appearances even right here in western
> Washington last fall, and it's too bad they cut their hours. On peak
> evenings they would fade in around 5 PM here in October, and stick around until
> about 8:30 PM. I was able to receive it barefoot on a stock PL-310 (the
> only TA ever received barefoot here), and boost up its signal to a very
> healthy level with the 6' PVC tuned passive loop in the back yard.
> Tony, I hope you will have as much fun with your 7.5" plug-in loopstick as
> I've had making them (and sending them out). There is something weirdly fun
> about boosting up the AM sensitivity of this "Clark Kent" radio, and
> making it a super DX performer!
> 73, Gary
> In a message dated 5/15/2010 12:41:59 P.M. Pacific Daylight Time,
> tonyward@... writes:
> Mine is sitting in Mississauga Postal Centre (the other side of Toronto),
> where it arrived at 3 am this morning, according to tracking. I am looking
> forward to plugging it in when it finishes the final 65 miles of its
> journey Gary, possibly as early as Monday as it is through Customs already. I am
> also warming up a few of my classic Sonys --- like the 2010 --- and hope
> to have time to play with this little beauty on other, less elaborate
> circuits. No doubt I will have to prod it to resonate it off the 360. Now if only
> 1134 Croatia hadn't chopped their evening hours a couple of months ago ---
> I was hearing that barefoot nightly on the PL380 not so vry long ago ...
> Your efforts, and contribution to the hobby, is very much appreciated by
> me, and all others whose opposing thumbs are opposed mostly (it seems) to
> fine work Gary, and I thank you on behalf of Klutzes everywhere!
> Tony (VE3NO) ComputerViz, NYAA Starfest On-Line
> tonyward@...
> Now spending the BBQ Season channelling the Inner Carbon of Cows...
> ____________________________________
> From: "D1028Gary@..."
> To: ultralightdx@...
> Sent: Sat, May 15, 2010 3:12:29 PM
> Subject: [ultralightdx] Tecsun PL-360 7.5" Plug-in Loopstick Project Update
> Hello All,
> Thanks to Richard and Kevin for their initial DXing reports on these
> PL-360 7.5" upgrade loopsticks. The concept of plugging in a highly sensitive
> loopstick to this DSP model appears to be very popular, and serious orders hav
> e been placed with Amidon (and other suppliers) to keep up with the demand.
> 7.5" Loopsticks have already been shipped to Richard, Kevin, Tony, Greg,
> and Barry. Phil's package will go out today, and John's should go out
> Monday. Many more loopsticks are currently being constructed for deserving DXers,
> and the "mini-factory" here should be in operation for at least another
> month. Those DXers who have expressed interest in the loopsticks may receive
> them a little sooner than expected, due to improvements in the construction
> process.
> Since the project offers a rare opportunity for non-technical DXers to
> receive a huge AM (or LW) sensitivity boost without any radio modification,
> these 7.5" plug-in loopsticks are being offered at cost only, with charges
> only for material and shipping ($31 total, for North American DXers). With
> over 20 orders already, however, a maximum of 25 loopsticks for the current
> project is planned, to provide time for other upcoming hobby and family
> projects.
> Initial work has also started on a new project to modify Tecsun PL-380
> units (with their awesome 1 kHz DSP selectivity) to accept these 7.5" plug-in
> loopsticks, designed for the PL-360. The electrical modification is very
> simple, and only a few more mechanical refinements in the design will be
> necessary. Those who have purchased these monster plug-in loopsticks for the
> PL-360 may have yet another transoceanic DX-chasing option, just in time for
> the Fall TA and TP-chasing season :-)
> 73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)

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