Date   

Freight/Postage to New Zealand

Sutton Burtenshaw <suttonb@...>
 

Hi all,
Almost ordered a Razr v3 charger for my PL-380 but Overstock.com quoted NZ$76.18 or US$54.11 for freight,. Seems a tad high for something costing less than NZ$7.00. Any suggestions (apart from the obvious) please.
Have only heard KMIK 1580 so far but with the aid of a 12inch box loop. The new 'Sky TV' set top box is another matter and I feel like giving it the thumb and forefinger treatment but I'm not the only person in the household, hi hi.
I enjoy all the postings guys, keep it up.

Sutton.


Re: even more DSP radios-FARMERIK

Mark Roberts
 

On Sat, Jan 16, 2010 at 4:48 PM, farmerik <farmerik@...> wrote:
There are 5 more new DSP radios on ebay which look like they might be ULR's.

DEGEN DE 15, DE 17, DE 1123, DE 1125.
I have two DE1123s, both purchased through an Amazon seller. I like
the form factor - Walkman-sized, very thin. Compared to the Tecsun
radios, though, there are limitations. AM performance is definitely
not comparable, doubtless because whatever internal antenna is being
used has to be tiny. I've been afraid to open it up for fear of not
getting it back together again, so I don't know for sure. I believe
it's set for an audio bandwidth of 2 kHz (not 3 as with the
G8/PL-300WT) so you might be able to do something with it for DXing in
a pinch. On FM, it's as free of front-end overload as the Tecsun
radios, but just slightly less sensitive. I blame the tiny telescoping
antenna that stretches out only to be a little more than a foot long.
That's way too short for FM. I don't believe it uses the headphone
cord as an antenna.

It has SW, but I've never done much with it. It does not have LW.

It runs on 3 AAAs and can recharge them. Both of mine came with
rechargeable batteries.

All controls are pushbutton. The memory system is very easy to use.

It can also record, in mono, at very low bitrates. I don't find this
capability to be useful and discount it in any comparison with other
DSP radios.

It also has the usual alarm capabilities.

Bottom line: if you buy it, buy it to replace an FM walkman-type
radio. It does well at that.


Re: AM Freq lists both Canadian and Mexican

wa8lcz
 

the Mexican Log is:
John Callarman's superb AM Mexican Log


byron

--- In ultralightdx@..., "John H. Bryant" <bjohnorcas@...> wrote:

Byron,

Do you know where from and when the Mexican data
got to that site??? The most up-to-date info on
Mexico is the new IRCA Mexican Log, available
only in hard copy and the most extensive is the
Mexican list last updated by very thorough
hobbyist John Callerman about two years ago.

John Bryant
Stillwater, OK
WinRadio G313e + Ultralights
Wellbrook Phased Array






At 04:05 PM 1/17/2010 +0000, you wrote:


If you're a member of the ABDX group, (or want
to join) in the files section, you can download
excel spreadsheets of every Canadian station
listed by freq, with distances from your
location (if you know your latitude and longitude).

theres a 2nd spreadsheet with just the
freq/call/location and formats for all Can stations.

a 3rd spreadsheet with all mexican stations by
freq. with other info about each station.

worth the time.

byron


Re: Early results of 7.5" Amidion rod

sdwillingham
 

Roy,

Proper RF grounding is a question I constantly face. In the Tecsun
radios, it's a bit less clear since they use 2-layer PCBs which can't
implement good ground planes. That said, I'm almost always an
advocate of a single ground system, especially a plane. Separating
ground areas can help specific problems but requires a detailed
understanding of the currents you are trying to manage. Even then,
it requires careful verification of results to be sure you've
accomplished what you set out to, and not made other things worse.

In terms of Si4734 performance, grounding problems generally affect
spurious responses or maximum audio SNR. They usually make no
difference to sensitivity.

-Scott-

--- In ultralightdx@..., "Roy" <roy.dyball@...> wrote:

Maybe you can help with another question. The data sheet for the Si4734
shows a separate earth for the antenna (RFGND pin 3) on the chip and in
one part of the sheet it recommends that antenna earth should be
separated from the system earth. Then in another spot in the data sheet
it says that all earths should be common. The Tecsun radios have a
common ground including pin 3. Is there any benefit in utilising this
separate RF ground?

Roy.


Re: PL-380 Question??

jim_kr1s <jkearman@...>
 

--- In ultralightdx@..., "Lee" <leo1949uk@...> wrote:

The loops are self supporting as the plastic strip is firm but bends
under tension!! ... I will send some piccies to the group.
Thanks, looking forward to that.


Thanks for the info, I would like a PL-380 but it seems a little
difficult to source from the UK...
The eBay seller anon-co will ship just about anywhere. You can pay via
PayPal. No one has reported any problems receiving radios from anon-co;
I think the UK has a tougher customs regime than the U.S. AFAIK, no one
in the US has had to pay import duty, but you may encounter that
problem.

The PL-380 is a good performer, despite that bloody soft mute. Chris
Knight and I put one to the test last night.
http://kr1s.kearman.com/html/MULDxER.html If we'd been using a G8 we'd
probably have pitched it into the lagoon!

73,

Jim, KR1S
http://qrp.kearman.com/


Re: A second "Stealth Modified" PL-380

jim_kr1s <jkearman@...>
 

--- In ultralightdx@..., "Stephen" <pianoplayer88key@...>
wrote:

Also, speaking of the two 1580s... I don't have a recording of it now,
but I often hear rapid volume changing (several times per second) or
something when I hear both stations at the same time. Is that likely to
be the two station's carriers not quite perfectly on frequency, or is it
possibly soft mute?

They may be slightly offset in frequency, or it may be the phase
difference between the two carriers, which will vary due to ionospheric
conditions. Soft mute definitely exacerbates the flutter if the minimum
signal level drops below its threshold. Believe me, it's much worse on
the G8!

Regarding winding an air loop around the radio: It would take quite a
few turns to get enough inductance, and the circuit board etc inside the
coil would degrade the Q. A similarly sized loop a couple of feet away
from the radio would work far better.

73,

Jim, KR1S
http://qrp.kearman.com/


Re: A second "Stealth Modified" PL-380

Gary DeBock
 

Hello Stephen,
 
Thanks for your comments regarding the "Stealth Modified" PL-380 project. I've been pleasantly surprised at the success of this experiment, which provides a sizable boost in MW and LW sensitivity for almost no $$.
 
As for your questions, the local signal overload you are experiencing (in which splatter is extending 13 and 14 kHz away, even on the PL-380's 1 kHz DSP setting) is not related to loopstick antenna Q, and will not be solved by this modification. To reduce the splatter issue, you do have some options with external loop antennas (tunable and otherwise), phasing systems, etc, but if you wish to use the PL-380 as a stand-alone receiver in its original cabinet, you may need to be content with simple nulling.
 
Regarding the use of Amidon type 61 bars in the PL-380 (and PL-310) internal-cabinet loopstick modifications, like several other DXers I ordered some of these bars as possible substitutes for the stock bar. After starting the actual modification work, however, it was obvious that these large cylindrical bars were a deal breaker-- the Tecsun circuitry is simply too crammed to accommodate them without major "plastic surgery," and rewiring of some adjacent components. Having experienced such messy cutouts in the Eton E100 CFJ455K5 filter installations, I was highly motivated to avoid them again (as John and Guy can relate). In the absence of a type 61 ferrite bar of exactly the same shape and size, recycling the stock ferrite bar is the only logical option.
 
For those reluctant to attempt removal of their own PL-380 stock ferrite bar, there may be hope from another source. There have been multiple requests for PL-380 7.5" external loopstick modification jobs (far more than I can perform by myself), and the related article on MediaFire ( http://www.mediafire.com/?hudn0mtlueg ) has already been downloaded 153 times. During these transplant operations the PL-380 stock ferrite bars become "orphans," suitable for recycling in a "Stealth Modified" PL-380 job. To meet the demand for the 7.5" loopstick PL-380's, other qualified technician(s) will be sought to perform this modification, and many more of these PL-380 "orphan" stock ferrite bars will probably be available before much longer.
 
Once some free time is available, I'll be happy to record some MP3's of the signal boost provided by the PL-380 "stealth modification," and post photos. For a $5 investment, the job certainly provides the maximum DXing bang for the buck.
 
73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)          
 
In a message dated 1/17/2010 5:21:17 A.M. Pacific Standard Time, pianoplayer88key@... writes:

 

I've been eagerly reading about these experiments with the loopstick antennas in the PL-380, and am glad to see some progress being made. :)
Question... does antenna Q (on the loopstick) affect the adjacent-channel selectivity (once you get past the bandwidth equivalent to whatever the filter setting is)? One reason I'm wondering is because my (stock, for now) PL-380 has several signals (stations within 5-8 miles of me) that even in the 1kHz setting, don't completely disappear until I'm tuned about 13 or 14 kHz off, and 10kHz away are strong enough to overpower stations that would otherwise be fairly well intelligible. Is there any way to improve on this?

Also, related to doing the stealth loopstick modification, is there any way to fit one of the Amidon Type 61 bars in there if I somehow cut (or ground) away some of the plastic near the flat loopstick (especially behind it) to make room? Or, would that possibly monkey with the shielding and make it more susceptible to internally-generated noise? If I am able to get rid of plastic (something I'd be willing to consider) to make room, what bar should I probably put in there? I'm thinking I would probably go with the Amidon R61-025-400 - the Type 61 0.25" diameter 4" bar.... or, if there's room after cutting away some plastic, should I go with the R61-050-600 and trim its length to fit in the cabinet?

I believe my PL-380 is one of the 11-2009 models. Pics:
http://picasaweb.google.com/PianoPlayer88Key/TecsunPL380#

I don't expect to start any modification until at least after I get the replacement tuner part from Joyce, which I ordered few days ago (not EMS, so it'll probably take a couple weeks or so to get it).

Another idea for an antenna modification.... what about winding an air-core loop antenna around the internal perimeter of the case, and somehow adding a switch to switch between that and the internal loopstick? (The internal air-core antenna would be intended to allow use of the radio in a vertical orientation.)

With whatever modifications I do, MW performance is the most important to me. Any improvement with LW would be considered an extra bonus. (In stock form, I don't get any trace of any LW stations, but then maybe I've checked at the wrong time of the day.)
I also have yet to log any TP/TAs, but that could also be due to the fact that I have strong locals on nearby channels... for example an IBOC on 600 (owning 594), 50kW locals on 690 (-693) and 760 (-747 & 774), a fairly nearby by 10kW on 1130 (wiping out 1134) directed toward me, and two 50kW 1580s battling it out both within about 300 miles of me (negating 1575), just to name a few challenges.

Also, speaking of the two 1580s... I don't have a recording of it now, but I often hear rapid volume changing (several times per second) or something when I hear both stations at the same time. Is that likely to be the two station's carriers not quite perfectly on frequency, or is it possibly soft mute? (Both stations are capable, when conditions are right, of coming in nearly as strong as a few of the aforementioned locals.) If that's not the case, considering that I still think there is a little bit of soft mute in my PL-380 (or is it just my extra-sensitive ear?), is there a recommended way to check for this?

And another thing ;) ... would it be possible to post audio examples of the shootouts, or modifications you have made? For example, record a station on the stock PL-380 that is at the threshold of detectability, then the same on a modded PL-380... or whatever comparison you might choose to do...?

--- In ultralightdx@yahoogroups.com, D1028Gary@... wrote:
>
> Hi Steve,
>
> Great job on your "stealth modified" PL-380. I think we both agree that as
> long as a great LW sensitivity boost is obtained, we'll be happy to DX with
> the radio, even if the coil has a lower Q :-)
>
> The "stealth modified " PL-380 here really "smokes" the stock PL-310 on
> LW, and has a serious advantage on the lower MW frequencies as well (where
> many of the TP's reside). I have been extremely satisfied with this $5
> modification, which I think will help many DXers obtain a significant boost in
> AM-DXing capabilities for almost no $$.
>
> The same experiment was very successful in the PL-310 model, but to be
> perfectly honest, like most TP-DXers I have never been particularly thrilled
> with the "soft mute" function in the PL-310 and earlier models, which limits
> the ability to tune farther away from domestic splatter. Despite this, the
> same experiment in the PL-310 provided an equivalent boost in LW and AM
> sensitivity, and the PL-310 stock loopstick bar is significantly easier than
> the PL-380 bar to remove.
>
> Warning: the PL-380 stock loopstick typically will not come out without
> testing the patience of the tinkerer. I will paste the recommendations I gave
> to Steve below, and recommend that those lacking confidence about
> performing the procedure wait until the full modification article comes out.
>
> 73 and Good DX,
> Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
> __________________________________________________________
> ____________
>
> Recommendations to Steve:
>
>
>
> Having done three of these PL-380 ferrite bar removals, I have noticed a
> great difference between the amount of glue in the models manufactured in
> November, and the models manufactured in December. The ones made in November
> are loaded with glue, making it almost impossible to remove the bar without
> cracking it into pieces, but the ones made in December seem to have far
> less glue. During a transplant procedure I myself cracked up a PL-380 bar on a
> model made in November, but successfully removed the bars in two December
> models.
>
> Anyway, the procedure is to use a small, flat jeweler's screwdriver to
> break all glue bonds on both sides, then gently pry underneath the bar to
> break the glue bonds on the bottom of the bar. Then the bar is gently lifted up
> by the screwdriver until it can be grasped by hand, and twisted repeatedly
> until it comes out. Almost all of the glue bonds are concentrated in one
> small section of the slot, but there are small spots of glue on each end.
>
>
>
>
>
> In a message dated 1/16/2010 6:53:47 P.M. Pacific Standard Time,
> steveratz@... writes:
>
>
>
>
> I did the same PL380 stock loopstick rewind today. I'd previously failed
> to remove the loopstick, and was close to breaking it when I stopped trying
> to pry it out. I tried again today, using a 1/4" wide screwdriver blade in
> the open end of the frame to pry, after once again scoring all the glue
> joints on the sides of the bar and frame. This time the glue eventually (very
> reluctantly) let go and I was able to get the loopstick out intact (and
> only one spot of mangled wire but not broken).
> I started rewinding (with 40/44 Litz) 0.1" from one end and wound 110
> turns before stopping. I had 0.25" left on the other end and could have
> probably gotten another 5 turns on. Total winding length 2.68", with 6" pigtails
> for connecting to the Q meter.
> The new coil measures worse for Q than the old one (!) on the HP4342A Q
> meter except for the bottom LF frequencies. Inductance measured 420 uH, Q 55
> at 796 kHz. (397 uH on the B&K 875A LCR meter; 390.7 uH on the aade.com LC
> meter)
> The highest frequency before the Q meter variable cap was at minimum was
> 1300 kHz, for Q measurements.
> 1300 kHz Q 17 (stock Q 30, 260 uH inductance at 796 kHz)
> 900 kHz Q 43 (stock Q 68)
> 700 kHz Q 72 (stock Q 102)
> 530 kHz Q 114 (stock Q 151)
> 500 kHz Q 125 (stock Q 162)
> 400 kHz Q 170 (stock Q 194)
> 300 kHz Q 225 (stock Q 220)
> 200 kHz Q 267 (stock Q 211)
>
> It was already dark by the time I'd finished the tests and put the coil in
> the PL380 and put the case on and tried the radio. But it could hear my
> 296 LGD beacon now; I had no comparison tests for MW especially for a
> non-daytime check, but it certainly heard stations from 1700 down.
> Perhaps Q really does have little effect on loopstick sensitivity. :)
> Since the new coil had much higher inductance compared to the stock coil, maybe
> that was the reason for improved LF sensitivity since I couldn't hear my
> local NDB with the stock coil.
> More mysteries! :)) That's the fun of experimenting, see what you come up
> with; with more data now added to what Gary, Roy and Scott have already
> contributed.
> 73,
> Steve
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: _D1028Gary@..._ (mailto:D1028Gary@...)
> To: _ultralightdx@ultralightdxult_ (mailto:ultralightdx@yahoogroups.com)
> Sent: Saturday, January 16, 2010 2:33 PM
> Subject: [ultralightdx] "Stealth Modified" PL-380 vs. Stock PL-310 Shootout
>
>
> Hello All,
>
> As reported in a recent Ultralightdx post, a Tecsun PL-380 model received
> a serious AM sensitivity boost by replacing the Chinese Litz wire on the
> stock ferrite bar with high-quality 40/44 Litz wire, and rewinding a coil to
> provide an inductance of 434 uh. This modification (detailed in the
> experimental report pasted below)provided an average 4 dBu increase in the
> PL-380's RSSI readings from 530-1700 kHz, and cost only about $5 (for the small
> quantity of 40/44 Litz wire).
>
> Yesterday this "stealth modified" PL-380 was tested extensively against a
> stock PL-310 model-- on all AM and LW frequencies. Tests were made for
> weak-signal reception throughout the spectrum, and records were kept both of
> relative signal quality, and the RSSI readings.
>
> These tests showed that the "stealth-modified" PL-380 had a performance
> advantage over the stock PL-310 on all LW and MW frequencies, although the
> advantage on the very high AM band (X band frequencies) was shown only on the
> RSSI readings, with equivalent live signal audio quality.
>
> On the LW frequencies, the "stealth modified" PL-380 really ran wild over
> the stock PL-310, receiving 4 beacon stations (at local midnight)
> completely inaudible on the PL-310. This was in sharp contrast to the stock PL-380's
> LW performance, which is much less impressive than the PL-310's (although
> not as deaf as the PL-300WT/ G8 models).
>
> On the lower AM frequencies, the "stealth modified" PL-380 also was
> clearly superior to the PL-310, having solid reception of the 521-INE beacon
> (that the PL-310 could barely detect as a trace). During early morning testing,
> the modified PL-380 was also able to detect traces of 594-JOAK and
> 747-JOIB, which were completely absent on the PL-310. RSSI readings on the
> modified PL-380 averaged 2 dBu higher than on the PL-310 on the low band
> frequencies, but the difference in actual signal quality was more pronounced.
>
> The modified PL-380 maintained this general advantage on the mid-band
> frequencies, although the PL-310 became more competitive. Live signal reception
> on open frequencies still favored the modified PL-380, although in several
> cases the PL-310's "soft mute" irritant kicked in, as if the model was
> throwing in the towel. The RSSI readings still averaged about 2 dBu in favor
> of the modified PL-380.
>
> AM high band reception was essentially equal, although the modified PL-380
> continued to show an average 1 dBu advantage in the RSSI readings. No
> difference in actual live signal audio was detectable in the two models, howe
> ver. The PL-310's "soft mute" function was again a serious impediment to the
> weak signal testing, making the model's audio drop out frequently during
> the competition.
>
> So what is the overall verdict of this "stealth-modified" PL-380 model?
> Well, simply by removing the stock loopstick and replacing the mystery
> Chinese Litz wire with superior 40/44 wire (in a longer 434 uh coil), at the cost
> of $5 a PL-380 owner can upgrade the AM and LW sensitivity of his radio to
> exceed that of the PL-310 model-- and avoid the "soft mute" issue as well.
> This advantage can be obtained without changing the outward appearance of
> the PL-380 in any way, and TSA will never know the difference :-)
>
> A full experimental report and related article should be drafted shortly
> (one of several unfinished hobby projects competing for rare free time,
> unfortunately)A
>
> 73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------
> ----------------------------------------------------------
> Initial Experimental Report:
>
> Hello All,
>
> Yesterday there was a moderately successful experiment to wind a 40/44
> Litz wire coil on a PL-310 stock ferrite bar, which was successful in
> providing about a 4 dBu average increase in the RSSI readings from 530- 1700 kHz
> (as well as slightly better signal quality on weak stations, with the fringe
> benefit of stopping the PL-310 from kicking in to "soft mute" so quickly).
> But I should confess that the PL-310 experimentation yesterday was really
> only a warm up for my true pet project-- creating a similar in-cabinet
> loopstick for the PL-380, which hopefully would boost up its 530-1700 kHz
> sensitivity in the same way.
>
> As with the PL-310 yesterday, the PL-380's cabinet interior has very
> little free space, making it mandatory that the stock ferrite bar by recycled in
> a new loopstick (in the absence of a type 61 bar of the same shape and
> size, which seems unavailable)As with the PL-310 yesterday, the PL-3 ferrite
> bar can be successfully removed from its slot in the cabinet, although
> patience is required for this task, and the stock coil windings themselves always
> get mangled when the glue bonds are broken.
>
> As yesterday, the stock ferrite bar was first wound with the maximum
> amount of 40/44 Litz wire that its length would allow (providing about 512 uh),
> then coil turns were subtracted until the Si4734 chip varactor suddenly
> allowed a huge boost in signal reception on an extreme high band frequency (in
> this case, 1700 kHz). The inductance at this point was measured at 434 uh,
> which was somewhat higher than the "breakthrough" PL-310 inductance found
> yesterday (416 uh). The exciting result of the experiment was that this
> enhanced loopstick provided a clear increase in PL-380 AM sensitivity from
> 530-1700 kHz, both in the RSSI readings (averaging 4 dBu increase across the
> band) and in the signal quality of weak stations. The stock PL-380 clearly
> cannot compete with this "stealth modified" PL-380 model, which will be
> tested tomorrow against the stock PL-310.
>
> This modification costs almost nothing (about $5 of 40/44 Litz wire), and
> leaves the PL-380's outward appearance unchanged. Further testing will be
> conducted tomorrow against both the stock PL-310, and the "stealth modified"
> PL-310. Thanks also to Steve Ratzlaff for his excellent description of
> coil Q, and detailed readings on both the PL-310 and PL-380. Steve was my
> experimental partner in the creation of the SWP 7.5" Slider models, designing
> the CFJ455K5 filter modification for the C.Crane SWP ultralight (while I
> designed the Slider loopstick modification)T
>
> 73 and Good DX,
> Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
>


Operation MULDxER!

jim_kr1s <jkearman@...>
 

Chris Knight's business trip to Melbourne, Florida was the occasion for Operation MULDxER (The DX is Out There!), the first Melbourne Ultra Light Dxpedition, Exhibition and Radiofest. The event got underway with dinner at Paisano's Italian restaurant, overlooking the Indian River Lagoon. Between mouthfuls of delicious Chicken Catch-A-T-A, we talked about ultralights, antennas, DXing, ham radio, politics, bird watching.... the gamut.

Well-nourished, we headed for the parking lot to do some DXing. The only thing between us and the Atlantic was the barrier island, and conditions were superb. Using only an unmodified, barefoot PL-380 we logged 20 countries in a couple of hours. Chris and I have only a bit more than 80 years of combined DXing experience. No doubt more-experienced DXers with spotting receivers could have done better. We didn't bother logging domestics except the annoying Emergency Radio station on 1610 that kept us from making Anguilla #21. Here's a list of one station per country logged; some, like Algeria, Bahamas, Canada, Cuba, Mexico and Venezuela were logged more than once.


 530    CMBQ        Cuba
 530    RVC        Turks & Caicos
 558    R Farhan    Iran (tentative)
 612    RTM         Morocco
 621    R Nacional    Canary Islands
 630    WUNO        Puerto Rico
 639    R Nacional    Spain
 750    YVKS        Venezuela
 783    R Mauretanie    Mauritania
 790    ZBVI        BVI
 800    PLB        Neth. Antilles
 810    ZNS 3        Bahamas
 860    CJBC        Canada
 891    RTA 1         Algeria
 900    XEW        Mexico
1134    Hrvatski R 1    Croatia
1170    HJNW        Colombia
1215    Absolute R    England
1521    Al-Saudiyah 1    Saudi Arabia
1610    WPRF526        USA

Photos from Operation MULDxER: http://kr1s.kearman.com/html/MULDxER.html

73,

Jim, KR1S
http://qrp.kearman.com/


Re: AM Freq lists both Canadian and Mexican

John H. Bryant <bjohnorcas@...>
 

Byron,

Do you know where from and when the Mexican data got to that site???  The most up-to-date info on Mexico is the new IRCA Mexican Log, available only in hard copy and the most extensive is the Mexican list last updated by very thorough hobbyist John Callerman about two years ago.

John Bryant
Stillwater, OK
WinRadio G313e + Ultralights
Wellbrook Phased Array






At 04:05 PM 1/17/2010 +0000, you wrote:

 

If you're a member of the ABDX group, (or want to join) in the files section, you can download excel spreadsheets of every Canadian station listed by freq, with distances from your location (if you know your latitude and longitude).

theres a 2nd spreadsheet with just the freq/call/location and formats for all Can stations.

a 3rd spreadsheet with all mexican stations by freq. with other info about each station.

worth the time.

byron


AM Freq lists both Canadian and Mexican

wa8lcz
 

If you're a member of the ABDX group, (or want to join) in the files section, you can download excel spreadsheets of every Canadian station listed by freq, with distances from your location (if you know your latitude and longitude).

theres a 2nd spreadsheet with just the freq/call/location and formats for all Can stations.

a 3rd spreadsheet with all mexican stations by freq. with other info about each station.

worth the time.

byron


MI LOG

wa8lcz
 

Jan 16
1370 WKMC Roaring spring PA 5k 38w 1912 EST ant dir NE oldies
1150 WHBY Kimberly WI 20k 25k 1924 EST ant dir NE
1280 WHTK Rochester NY 5k 5k 2003 EST ant dir N

Jan 17
nothing new, not even unknown 1080 french Canadian station

heard a few regulars: CT, VA, PA to the East. nothing new to the south or west

byron wa8lcz nr Detroit Mi Sony SRF-M40W ulr


logs last night

Allen Willie
 

 
 
Hi Guys,
 
Pretty decent conditions last night with the following heard:
 
549 khz - RTA1 - Alger, Algeria  Jan 16/10   22:59 UTC w/ arabic music then  talk by man and woman , into news  (this one was in most of the evening )
 
720 khz - KNR - Simuutaq, Greenland  Jan 16/10  23:34 UTC w/ greenlandic language then into 60's song by Kyu Sakamoto "Suki Yaki"  ( very strong at times )
 
972 khz - R. Jamahiriyah , Sirta Libya  Jan 16/10   22:30 UTC  w/ arabic chants and music
 
612 khz - RTM Sebaa-Aioun Morocco  Jan 16/10  22:51 UTC w/ arabic chants and music
 
750 khz - YVKS . Caracas Venezuela   Jan 17  3:14  UTC w/ political talk in spanish by man , Radio Caracas ID, mention of Venezuela  ( this one at times over semi local CBC station)
 
73 and Good DX to All
 
Allen Willie
St. John's, Newfoundland
SRF-M37V barefoot  


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Re: A second "Stealth Modified" PL-380

pianoplayer88key
 

I've been eagerly reading about these experiments with the loopstick antennas in the PL-380, and am glad to see some progress being made. :)
Question... does antenna Q (on the loopstick) affect the adjacent-channel selectivity (once you get past the bandwidth equivalent to whatever the filter setting is)? One reason I'm wondering is because my (stock, for now) PL-380 has several signals (stations within 5-8 miles of me) that even in the 1kHz setting, don't completely disappear until I'm tuned about 13 or 14 kHz off, and 10kHz away are strong enough to overpower stations that would otherwise be fairly well intelligible. Is there any way to improve on this?

Also, related to doing the stealth loopstick modification, is there any way to fit one of the Amidon Type 61 bars in there if I somehow cut (or ground) away some of the plastic near the flat loopstick (especially behind it) to make room? Or, would that possibly monkey with the shielding and make it more susceptible to internally-generated noise? If I am able to get rid of plastic (something I'd be willing to consider) to make room, what bar should I probably put in there? I'm thinking I would probably go with the Amidon R61-025-400 - the Type 61 0.25" diameter 4" bar.... or, if there's room after cutting away some plastic, should I go with the R61-050-600 and trim its length to fit in the cabinet?

I believe my PL-380 is one of the 11-2009 models. Pics:
http://picasaweb.google.com/PianoPlayer88Key/TecsunPL380#

I don't expect to start any modification until at least after I get the replacement tuner part from Joyce, which I ordered few days ago (not EMS, so it'll probably take a couple weeks or so to get it).

Another idea for an antenna modification.... what about winding an air-core loop antenna around the internal perimeter of the case, and somehow adding a switch to switch between that and the internal loopstick? (The internal air-core antenna would be intended to allow use of the radio in a vertical orientation.)

With whatever modifications I do, MW performance is the most important to me. Any improvement with LW would be considered an extra bonus. (In stock form, I don't get any trace of any LW stations, but then maybe I've checked at the wrong time of the day.)
I also have yet to log any TP/TAs, but that could also be due to the fact that I have strong locals on nearby channels... for example an IBOC on 600 (owning 594), 50kW locals on 690 (-693) and 760 (-747 & 774), a fairly nearby by 10kW on 1130 (wiping out 1134) directed toward me, and two 50kW 1580s battling it out both within about 300 miles of me (negating 1575), just to name a few challenges.

Also, speaking of the two 1580s... I don't have a recording of it now, but I often hear rapid volume changing (several times per second) or something when I hear both stations at the same time. Is that likely to be the two station's carriers not quite perfectly on frequency, or is it possibly soft mute? (Both stations are capable, when conditions are right, of coming in nearly as strong as a few of the aforementioned locals.) If that's not the case, considering that I still think there is a little bit of soft mute in my PL-380 (or is it just my extra-sensitive ear?), is there a recommended way to check for this?

And another thing ;) ... would it be possible to post audio examples of the shootouts, or modifications you have made? For example, record a station on the stock PL-380 that is at the threshold of detectability, then the same on a modded PL-380... or whatever comparison you might choose to do...?

--- In ultralightdx@..., D1028Gary@... wrote:

Hi Steve,

Great job on your "stealth modified" PL-380. I think we both agree that as
long as a great LW sensitivity boost is obtained, we'll be happy to DX with
the radio, even if the coil has a lower Q :-)

The "stealth modified " PL-380 here really "smokes" the stock PL-310 on
LW, and has a serious advantage on the lower MW frequencies as well (where
many of the TP's reside). I have been extremely satisfied with this $5
modification, which I think will help many DXers obtain a significant boost in
AM-DXing capabilities for almost no $$.

The same experiment was very successful in the PL-310 model, but to be
perfectly honest, like most TP-DXers I have never been particularly thrilled
with the "soft mute" function in the PL-310 and earlier models, which limits
the ability to tune farther away from domestic splatter. Despite this, the
same experiment in the PL-310 provided an equivalent boost in LW and AM
sensitivity, and the PL-310 stock loopstick bar is significantly easier than
the PL-380 bar to remove.

Warning: the PL-380 stock loopstick typically will not come out without
testing the patience of the tinkerer. I will paste the recommendations I gave
to Steve below, and recommend that those lacking confidence about
performing the procedure wait until the full modification article comes out.

73 and Good DX,
Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
____________________________________________________________________________
____________

Recommendations to Steve:



Having done three of these PL-380 ferrite bar removals, I have noticed a
great difference between the amount of glue in the models manufactured in
November, and the models manufactured in December. The ones made in November
are loaded with glue, making it almost impossible to remove the bar without
cracking it into pieces, but the ones made in December seem to have far
less glue. During a transplant procedure I myself cracked up a PL-380 bar on a
model made in November, but successfully removed the bars in two December
models.

Anyway, the procedure is to use a small, flat jeweler's screwdriver to
break all glue bonds on both sides, then gently pry underneath the bar to
break the glue bonds on the bottom of the bar. Then the bar is gently lifted up
by the screwdriver until it can be grasped by hand, and twisted repeatedly
until it comes out. Almost all of the glue bonds are concentrated in one
small section of the slot, but there are small spots of glue on each end.





In a message dated 1/16/2010 6:53:47 P.M. Pacific Standard Time,
steveratz@... writes:




I did the same PL380 stock loopstick rewind today. I'd previously failed
to remove the loopstick, and was close to breaking it when I stopped trying
to pry it out. I tried again today, using a 1/4" wide screwdriver blade in
the open end of the frame to pry, after once again scoring all the glue
joints on the sides of the bar and frame. This time the glue eventually (very
reluctantly) let go and I was able to get the loopstick out intact (and
only one spot of mangled wire but not broken).
I started rewinding (with 40/44 Litz) 0.1" from one end and wound 110
turns before stopping. I had 0.25" left on the other end and could have
probably gotten another 5 turns on. Total winding length 2.68", with 6" pigtails
for connecting to the Q meter.
The new coil measures worse for Q than the old one (!) on the HP4342A Q
meter except for the bottom LF frequencies. Inductance measured 420 uH, Q 55
at 796 kHz. (397 uH on the B&K 875A LCR meter; 390.7 uH on the aade.com LC
meter)
The highest frequency before the Q meter variable cap was at minimum was
1300 kHz, for Q measurements.
1300 kHz Q 17 (stock Q 30, 260 uH inductance at 796 kHz)
900 kHz Q 43 (stock Q 68)
700 kHz Q 72 (stock Q 102)
530 kHz Q 114 (stock Q 151)
500 kHz Q 125 (stock Q 162)
400 kHz Q 170 (stock Q 194)
300 kHz Q 225 (stock Q 220)
200 kHz Q 267 (stock Q 211)

It was already dark by the time I'd finished the tests and put the coil in
the PL380 and put the case on and tried the radio. But it could hear my
296 LGD beacon now; I had no comparison tests for MW especially for a
non-daytime check, but it certainly heard stations from 1700 down.
Perhaps Q really does have little effect on loopstick sensitivity. :)
Since the new coil had much higher inductance compared to the stock coil, maybe
that was the reason for improved LF sensitivity since I couldn't hear my
local NDB with the stock coil.
More mysteries! :)) That's the fun of experimenting, see what you come up
with; with more data now added to what Gary, Roy and Scott have already
contributed.
73,
Steve

----- Original Message -----
From: _D1028Gary@..._ (mailto:D1028Gary@...)
To: _ultralightdx@ultralightdxult_ (mailto:ultralightdx@...)
Sent: Saturday, January 16, 2010 2:33 PM
Subject: [ultralightdx] "Stealth Modified" PL-380 vs. Stock PL-310 Shootout


Hello All,

As reported in a recent Ultralightdx post, a Tecsun PL-380 model received
a serious AM sensitivity boost by replacing the Chinese Litz wire on the
stock ferrite bar with high-quality 40/44 Litz wire, and rewinding a coil to
provide an inductance of 434 uh. This modification (detailed in the
experimental report pasted below)provided an average 4 dBu increase in the
PL-380's RSSI readings from 530-1700 kHz, and cost only about $5 (for the small
quantity of 40/44 Litz wire).

Yesterday this "stealth modified" PL-380 was tested extensively against a
stock PL-310 model-- on all AM and LW frequencies. Tests were made for
weak-signal reception throughout the spectrum, and records were kept both of
relative signal quality, and the RSSI readings.

These tests showed that the "stealth-modified" PL-380 had a performance
advantage over the stock PL-310 on all LW and MW frequencies, although the
advantage on the very high AM band (X band frequencies) was shown only on the
RSSI readings, with equivalent live signal audio quality.

On the LW frequencies, the "stealth modified" PL-380 really ran wild over
the stock PL-310, receiving 4 beacon stations (at local midnight)
completely inaudible on the PL-310. This was in sharp contrast to the stock PL-380's
LW performance, which is much less impressive than the PL-310's (although
not as deaf as the PL-300WT/ G8 models).

On the lower AM frequencies, the "stealth modified" PL-380 also was
clearly superior to the PL-310, having solid reception of the 521-INE beacon
(that the PL-310 could barely detect as a trace). During early morning testing,
the modified PL-380 was also able to detect traces of 594-JOAK and
747-JOIB, which were completely absent on the PL-310. RSSI readings on the
modified PL-380 averaged 2 dBu higher than on the PL-310 on the low band
frequencies, but the difference in actual signal quality was more pronounced.

The modified PL-380 maintained this general advantage on the mid-band
frequencies, although the PL-310 became more competitive. Live signal reception
on open frequencies still favored the modified PL-380, although in several
cases the PL-310's "soft mute" irritant kicked in, as if the model was
throwing in the towel. The RSSI readings still averaged about 2 dBu in favor
of the modified PL-380.

AM high band reception was essentially equal, although the modified PL-380
continued to show an average 1 dBu advantage in the RSSI readings. No
difference in actual live signal audio was detectable in the two models, howe
ver. The PL-310's "soft mute" function was again a serious impediment to the
weak signal testing, making the model's audio drop out frequently during
the competition.

So what is the overall verdict of this "stealth-modified" PL-380 model?
Well, simply by removing the stock loopstick and replacing the mystery
Chinese Litz wire with superior 40/44 wire (in a longer 434 uh coil), at the cost
of $5 a PL-380 owner can upgrade the AM and LW sensitivity of his radio to
exceed that of the PL-310 model-- and avoid the "soft mute" issue as well.
This advantage can be obtained without changing the outward appearance of
the PL-380 in any way, and TSA will never know the difference :-)

A full experimental report and related article should be drafted shortly
(one of several unfinished hobby projects competing for rare free time,
unfortunately)A

73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
Initial Experimental Report:

Hello All,

Yesterday there was a moderately successful experiment to wind a 40/44
Litz wire coil on a PL-310 stock ferrite bar, which was successful in
providing about a 4 dBu average increase in the RSSI readings from 530- 1700 kHz
(as well as slightly better signal quality on weak stations, with the fringe
benefit of stopping the PL-310 from kicking in to "soft mute" so quickly).
But I should confess that the PL-310 experimentation yesterday was really
only a warm up for my true pet project-- creating a similar in-cabinet
loopstick for the PL-380, which hopefully would boost up its 530-1700 kHz
sensitivity in the same way.

As with the PL-310 yesterday, the PL-380's cabinet interior has very
little free space, making it mandatory that the stock ferrite bar by recycled in
a new loopstick (in the absence of a type 61 bar of the same shape and
size, which seems unavailable)As with the PL-310 yesterday, the PL-3 ferrite
bar can be successfully removed from its slot in the cabinet, although
patience is required for this task, and the stock coil windings themselves always
get mangled when the glue bonds are broken.

As yesterday, the stock ferrite bar was first wound with the maximum
amount of 40/44 Litz wire that its length would allow (providing about 512 uh),
then coil turns were subtracted until the Si4734 chip varactor suddenly
allowed a huge boost in signal reception on an extreme high band frequency (in
this case, 1700 kHz). The inductance at this point was measured at 434 uh,
which was somewhat higher than the "breakthrough" PL-310 inductance found
yesterday (416 uh). The exciting result of the experiment was that this
enhanced loopstick provided a clear increase in PL-380 AM sensitivity from
530-1700 kHz, both in the RSSI readings (averaging 4 dBu increase across the
band) and in the signal quality of weak stations. The stock PL-380 clearly
cannot compete with this "stealth modified" PL-380 model, which will be
tested tomorrow against the stock PL-310.

This modification costs almost nothing (about $5 of 40/44 Litz wire), and
leaves the PL-380's outward appearance unchanged. Further testing will be
conducted tomorrow against both the stock PL-310, and the "stealth modified"
PL-310. Thanks also to Steve Ratzlaff for his excellent description of
coil Q, and detailed readings on both the PL-310 and PL-380. Steve was my
experimental partner in the creation of the SWP 7.5" Slider models, designing
the CFJ455K5 filter modification for the C.Crane SWP ultralight (while I
designed the Slider loopstick modification)T

73 and Good DX,
Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)


More Loggings

Jim <va3jno@...>
 

Radio Used....................................barefoot Sony SRF-59
Total ULR Loggings (Kirkland Lake)............180

1090 WBAL Baltimore MD. Ad, then "Ron Smith Radio Show". "WBAL", wbal.com, and "WBAL news at 5" at 1700 EST Jan 15. Fair. 50kW.

1250 CJYE Oakville ON. Gospel music, ad for tour of Israel with info at www.goisrael.ca, promo for Saturday morning show "on Joy 12-50" at 1730 EST Jan 15. Fair/poor. 10kW/5kW.

630 WPRO Providence RI. "WPRO Providence" ID then into ABC news at 2300. "Newstalk 6-30 WPRO" twice at 2305 EST Jan 15. Poor. 5kW. NEW STATE #25.

800 CJBQ Belleville ON. C&W music (For The Good Times). "800 CJBQ" twice at 0020 EST Jan 16, first by a woman then repeated by a man. More C&W music. Very poor, with CJAD and CKLW. 10kW.

1230 WSOO Sault Ste. Marie MI. "12-30 WSOO" ID only at 0727 EST Jan 16, then back in a few minutes later with an insurance ad mentioning Sault Ste. Marie. Very poor. 1kW.

1260 WRIE Erie PA. Ads, one mentioning "rolling into Erie". "ESPN Radio 12-60 WRIE Erie" at 0800 EST Jan 16 and into Sportscenter. Very poor. 5kW.

1340 WMBN Petoskey MI. "13-40 WMBN. Here is your northern Michigan weather forecast" at 1943 EST Jan 16. Very poor then gone. 1kW.

1440 WHKZ Warren OH. SRN news. "This is WHKW Cleveland, WHKZ ..." at 2002 EST Jan 16. Very poor and mostly overpowered by WMAX.

710 WOR New York City NY. USF vs Rutgers basketball game. "710 WOR and WOR HD" ID at 2057 EST Jan 16. Poor. 50kW.

Jim Orcheson
DXing in Kirkland Lake Ontario.


new on this morning on E-100

Carl DeWhitt
 

KGYN 1210 Guymon,OK 0733-0736 1.17.10 i.d."U.S. Country 1210 KGYN" into c & W mx.poor. E-100 barefoot.new.
Carl DeWhitt
Maryville,Tn.


Re: PL-380 Question??

John H. Bryant <bjohnorcas@...>
 

Lee,

Send those photos to me and I'll put them through a couple of routines to reduce the file size without harming the actual photo and then I'll put them up.

I find that ebay suppliers with a high transaction count (in the hundreds) and above 95% positive feedback are very reliable.  I've never had a bad experience.  However, I am cautious.  Joyce Ng of Hong Kong is one of the finest people that I've met on ebay.... just wonderful, tho her English is limited.  I'm almost certain that she ships to the UK, but go on ebay and find one of her Anon-co auctions and ASK  HER, using the "Ask the Seller a Question" routine.  Tell her that I sent you.  She is just great.  If there would be a problem, she will tell you.

Send me those photos when you have the chance and tell Joyce that I said "Hi!"

John Bryant





At 12:06 PM 1/17/2010 +0000, you wrote:

 

Hi John.

Do you know if they mail to the UK?? that would be great if they did...you seem to be able to order what you want, I`m envious that
you are able to trust the suppliers ... they also appear to give good
service ...

I wil email some piccies if you wouldn`t mind posting them for me..
being plastic means they can be made waterproof!! the mind boggles ;o)

Regards.

Lee....

--- In ultralightdx@..., "John H. Bryant" wrote:
>
> Lee,
>
> Sorry, but as yet, the PL-380 is only available
> from sources in China, mostly Joyce at Anon-co.
>
> Those loops that you made sound VERY interesting.
> How 'bout shooting a few pictures for us....
> actually, a short article would be great.
> However, if that is too much for you, how 'bout
> sending me some shots, I'll optimize them for the
> web and upload them for the gang????? Your ideas sound very intriguing.
>
> Hey, I taught for seven years at a place just two
> hours south of Birmingham.... Auburn
> University.... 'course, that was Birmingham,
> ALABAMA.... as I go bumbling into the dawn...
>
> THANKS for your comments, WELCOME! Let's see those loops!
>
> John Bryant
> Moderator
> bjohnorcas@...
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> At 03:14 PM 1/16/2010 +0000, you wrote:
> >
> >
> >
> >Hi.
> >
> >Is the PL-380 known under any Alias, such as Eton or Grundig??
> >
> >In the UK the PL-300 is available as the Grundig G8 for example!
> >which I am very pleased with except for the soft squelch and MW
> >breakthrough on short wave ... very impressed with FM, I use it
> >portable and use my Kenwood for base station!!
> >
> >Thanks for all the info on ULs as I enjoy the projects, I have
> >built a couple of air coils and a couple of ferrite rod loops
> >also and they all work excellent with my G8,the air loops are
> >6ft and 9ft circumference and made using 2" x 0.325" plastic strip
> >that was meant for plastic window frames ... much quicker and
> >easier to build as a circle than wooden square loops and look just
> >as impressive, as the plastic is white. ;o)
> >
> >Cheers.
> >
> >Lee ... G6ZSG. Birmingham. UK.
> >
> >
>


Re: PL-380 Question??

Lee
 

Hi John.

Do you know if they mail to the UK?? that would be great if they did...you seem to be able to order what you want, I`m envious that
you are able to trust the suppliers ... they also appear to give good
service ...

I wil email some piccies if you wouldn`t mind posting them for me..
being plastic means they can be made waterproof!! the mind boggles ;o)

Regards.

Lee....

--- In ultralightdx@..., "John H. Bryant" <bjohnorcas@...> wrote:

Lee,

Sorry, but as yet, the PL-380 is only available
from sources in China, mostly Joyce at Anon-co.

Those loops that you made sound VERY interesting.
How 'bout shooting a few pictures for us....
actually, a short article would be great.
However, if that is too much for you, how 'bout
sending me some shots, I'll optimize them for the
web and upload them for the gang????? Your ideas sound very intriguing.

Hey, I taught for seven years at a place just two
hours south of Birmingham.... Auburn
University.... 'course, that was Birmingham,
ALABAMA.... as I go bumbling into the dawn...

THANKS for your comments, WELCOME! Let's see those loops!

John Bryant
Moderator
bjohnorcas@...








At 03:14 PM 1/16/2010 +0000, you wrote:



Hi.

Is the PL-380 known under any Alias, such as Eton or Grundig??

In the UK the PL-300 is available as the Grundig G8 for example!
which I am very pleased with except for the soft squelch and MW
breakthrough on short wave ... very impressed with FM, I use it
portable and use my Kenwood for base station!!

Thanks for all the info on ULs as I enjoy the projects, I have
built a couple of air coils and a couple of ferrite rod loops
also and they all work excellent with my G8,the air loops are
6ft and 9ft circumference and made using 2" x 0.325" plastic strip
that was meant for plastic window frames ... much quicker and
easier to build as a circle than wooden square loops and look just
as impressive, as the plastic is white. ;o)

Cheers.

Lee ... G6ZSG. Birmingham. UK.


Re: PL-380 Question??

Lee
 

--- In ultralightdx@..., "jim_kr1s" <jkearman@...> wrote:



--- In ultralightdx@..., "Lee" <leo1949uk@> wrote:

the air loops are
6ft and 9ft circumference and made using 2" x 0.325" plastic strip
that was meant for plastic window frames ... much quicker and
easier to build as a circle than wooden square loops and look just
as impressive, as the plastic is white. ;o)
Lee, how do you support those loops?

AFAIK, no one in the States, UK or anywhere else is importing the newer
Tecsuns or re-branding them, as with the G8.

73,

Jim, KR1S
http://qrp.kearman.com/
Hi Jim..

The loops are self supporting as the plastic strip is firm but bends
under tension!! ... I will send some piccies to the group.

Thanks for the info, I would like a PL-380 but it seems a little
difficult to source from the UK...

Cheers.

Lee ....


Following Up on 830 kHz

Kirk <kirk74601@...>
 

Just a little listening here tonight. I mainly wanted to follow up on 830 kHz because of Fri night's session. One more new station was identified there. Hrd on SRF-59 w/ SAT.

830, XEVQ, Culiaca, Sinaloa, 0627 UTC, 1/17/10, hrd a lot of pop type mx being played. After struggling to catch any announcements for 30 minutes, this one faded up for an ID by M ancr. Hrd a vy clear "La Grande de Sinaloa" ID. Sta is definitely not just a daytimer anymore as is listed some places.

Wishing everyone a good week.
Best of DX to all,

Kirk Allen
Pasadena, TX


Re: even more DSP radios-FARMERIK

keith beesley
 

I have a Grundig M400, which looks just like the DE15. I don't think it has a DSP chip, however. It's not a very strong performer on MW. I used it one or twice and then put it away.

Keith

--- On Sat, 1/16/10, farmerik <farmerik@...> wrote:

From: farmerik <farmerik@...>
Subject: [ultralightdx] even more DSP radios-FARMERIK
To: ultralightdx@...
Date: Saturday, January 16, 2010, 4:48 PM
There are 5 more new DSP radios on
ebay which look like they might be ULR's.

DEGEN DE 15, DE 17, DE 1123, DE 1125.
Kchibo KK-D202

Has anyone tried any of these?



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