Date   

Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Zacharias Liangas
 
Edited

Νeaely the same thinking in Greece.
My mom proposed me not to test shortwaves even in not so populous roads 

As for the moment had not any problem
The most common I do is to walk across a piscine with the pl330 radio hung on the right hand ,using earbuds and with medium detached 🐜 ena.



Re: 50kw Station Challenge - 2022

Johnny
 

Hi Paul,

I love it!

This is exactly the challenge that I needed for this year for my AM DXing...

Hope you don't mind of I "copy cat" your idea here in the US?

:)


Johnny


County Comm GP-7

Ron Layton <micron327@...>
 


Has anyone else bought one of these? I purchased one on December 23 but it won't be here until the second week of January. I also purchased the spare batteries and charger and the base.  I'm curious if anyone has had good DX with this radio.


Re: Another silly (?) question.

FenDrifter
 

Hi again Tony
Once more I’m impressed and grateful for the trouble you’ve gone to in your reply. There’s a lot to digest there, but I think I get the underlying message; experiment! It’s very early days for me but I’m enjoying the occasional surprise as I did about a week back, when I picked up Reach Beyond Australia in the Mati language. To pick up a broadcast from Australia while sitting in my lounge in the UK was pretty impressive I thought. 

Drifter


2021 - Yearly Loggings

Paul Blundell
 

Below is my list of loggings for 2021, I start my list each year so these are all the stations which I logged in 2021, the total is 108 stations.

Those flagged in yellow are station which were logged in 2020 but not 2021.

In 2022, I am going to be spending more time listening to the band and logging stations, my goal is to log 125 stations.



Long Term DXing Project - 1/01/2022

Paul Blundell
 

Time: 18:00 - 18:20
Location: Home, Launceston Tasmania
Radio: Digitech AR-1733 / 3"FSL aerial
Notes: My first session for 2022. A good mix of signals with 3GG on 531kHz being logged at a solid 4. 3RN on 621kHz hit 5 and was the standout of the session. 2CA and 3RPH were both unlogged, in the case of 3RPH on 1179khz, this was a little surprising.



Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Paul Blundell
 

It is our entry level amateur radio licence for Australia. I gained mine in around 2008 but have not renewed it since 2010, I don't have the space for it at the moment  maybe one day.

  • FOUNDATION: The AOCP(F) syllabus and related examination reflects the minimum level of knowledge, skills and experiences required to safely assemble and operate an amateur station at an entry level, without interference to other users and services.

On Sun, 2 Jan 2022, 10:59 am Phil Pasteur via groups.io, <ppasteur=q.com@groups.io> wrote:
On Sat, Jan 1, 2022 at 05:17 AM, Paul Blundell wrote:
AOCPF
Hey Paul, what is the  AOCPF  that you mention? Just curious. From context I have to think it is some kind of license or permit. Google not helpful.
BTW, I have not had much interest when I have been out with Ultralights and in ear monitors. I get all kinds of people checking me out if I take a telescope out...


Re: Another silly (?) question.

Tony Germanotta
 

Drifter, no problem. We all started out needing basic help at some time. 

The video you referenced is useful.  When you talked about a long wire, I thought you were hunting medium wave stations. A wire to get those stations would be very long indeed, with the best results often on wires that are hundreds of feet long. 

For shortwave stations, the wave lengths are shorter, hence the name. And a random wire of 20 to 30 feet can do wonders on a portable, especially if you can get it out the window and away from light dimmers, aquarium heaters and television sets. Portable radios are designed to be super sensitive so they can use the inefficient whip as a source. 

Antennas have lots of electronic rules but often work despite them. I find that to be the most fun. Folks have used bed springs and rain gutters as antennas. I have a metal frame around my shower doors that works just as well as an outdoor wire so long as no noisy appliances are running 

Once we were on a dxexpedition with thousands of feet of wire strung along the dunes of North Carolina’s outer banks. One of our party arrived after dark and dumped a tangle of wire onto the porch next to our meticulously laid antennas. His heap somehow captured everything we heard, including Indian and Indonesian local stations during daylight — probably by acting like a transformer to our antennas. But the rule books wouldn’t have predicted this. 

So try stuff. Walk around your house. Believe it or not, your whip might work much better in one room. Get a short piece of wire and put clips on both ends. Try attaching one end to the whip and the other to a cold water pipe, if your home is old enough to use copper. 

Run your wire outside the window.  30 feet would probably be the most that radio could handle without overloading.  Sometimes, less wire is better, improving the signal without addding to the noise. Especially if you have powerful radio station towers nearby. A small metal tape measure can be used as an antenna, just extend it as far as helpful and connect it to the radio with that wire with clips. 

And try a counterpoise, like the video suggests.  A ground counterpoise is vital when you are trying to transmit. It may not be as important on receiving. But it could help with fading. 

You can even cut a dipole for the band you are most interested in. That uses two wires of the same length to offset fades, and when resonant to a frequency, it actually amplifies the signal and reduces the noise. 

There are lots of books on antennas. And YouTube videos too.  

Just remember, with radio the best antenna is still reliant on conditions. If the bands are dead, no antenna will open them up. And certain bands work best under darkness, when the sun can’t mess up the ionosphere.  More folks get frustrated with shortwave by trying to find stations during the day on a band that will come alive after they pack it in. 

Good luck. It’s a fun journey. All these signals are constantly flying by us unnoticed until we get a radio and antenna to capture them. 



On Jan 1, 2022, at 6:11 PM, FenDrifter via groups.io <essexmarshman@...> wrote:



[Edited Message Follows]

Hi Tony
Many thanks for such a detailed and informative reply! I’ve clearly got to be more sure of what I’m doing here, and in answer to Paul’s question the beast I’m making this for is my Tecsun PL-330. I was intending to use this hanging out of my bedroom window, but may now keep it for country trips. I did see this YouTube clip of which I’d appreciate an opinion: https://youtu.be/WjCFLG0DHOo
Am I right in thinking that the lower ‘earth’ lead is connected to the plugs sleeve. If this is clouding the issue please tell me to forget for now, I can take it!
As usual any help greatly appreciated 
Drifter


Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Phil Pasteur
 

On Sat, Jan 1, 2022 at 05:17 AM, Paul Blundell wrote:
AOCPF
Hey Paul, what is the  AOCPF  that you mention? Just curious. From context I have to think it is some kind of license or permit. Google not helpful.
BTW, I have not had much interest when I have been out with Ultralights and in ear monitors. I get all kinds of people checking me out if I take a telescope out...


Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Paul Blundell
 

I think with Covid, keeping away from people is a really good idea and an extra reason to dx in more remote locations.

Pqul

On Sun, 2 Jan 2022, 10:06 am Max Heidel, <max.heidel@...> wrote:
Hah, same here. I like to get out in the fresh air with my ham gear and inevitably someone asks if I'm talking to Mars, or little green men. 

Only maybe 99% of the time it's when I'm about to break through a pileup with some DX station, too.

I think it's OK, and I don't mind it, but I do try to minimize it. If I can go somewhere without a lot of people, it's just better all around.


Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Paul Blundell
 

That's very true. Glad they got use to you and your dxing.

Paul

On Sun, 2 Jan 2022, 9:55 am Paul B. Walker, Jr., <walkerbroadcasting@...> wrote:
I DX from the top of my driveway here in McGrath, Alaska... on a very public road. When i first got here, everyone in this small town wondered what i was doing.. and tons asked.. now everyones used to it and seeing me outside in all kidns of weather, so they leave me alone.  Some people did genuinely think i was trying to talk to aliens.



On Sat, Jan 1, 2022 at 1:42 PM Chris Rogers <crvee8@...> wrote:
Hi Paul,
I find people are generally curious when they see radio equipment set up and like to know what you are doing. I generally tell them it is Amateur (ham) radio as most people have heard of that it is the easiest way to quickly get back to what you are doing rather than talking about MW dxing of which they will probably not understand. 
Of course having the public come up to you often is a real interruption to your hobby so my advice is to stay clear of public parks and find quieter remote bush areas etc away so you don't have these interactions.


Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks Chris. A good point about going bush, I will need to find some suitable locations.

Paul

On Sun, 2 Jan 2022, 9:42 am Chris Rogers, <crvee8@...> wrote:
Hi Paul,
I find people are generally curious when they see radio equipment set up and like to know what you are doing. I generally tell them it is Amateur (ham) radio as most people have heard of that it is the easiest way to quickly get back to what you are doing rather than talking about MW dxing of which they will probably not understand. 
Of course having the public come up to you often is a real interruption to your hobby so my advice is to stay clear of public parks and find quieter remote bush areas etc away so you don't have these interactions.


Re: Another silly (?) question.

FenDrifter
 
Edited

Hi Tony
Many thanks for such a detailed and informative reply! I’ve clearly got to be more sure of what I’m doing here, and in answer to Paul’s question the beast I’m making this for is my Tecsun PL-330. I was intending to use this hanging out of my bedroom window, but may now keep it for country trips. I did see this YouTube clip of which I’d appreciate an opinion: https://youtu.be/WjCFLG0DHOo
Am I right in thinking that the lower ‘earth’ lead is connected to the plugs sleeve. If this is clouding the issue please tell me to forget for now, I can take it!
As usual any help greatly appreciated 
Drifter


Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Max Heidel
 

Hah, same here. I like to get out in the fresh air with my ham gear and inevitably someone asks if I'm talking to Mars, or little green men. 

Only maybe 99% of the time it's when I'm about to break through a pileup with some DX station, too.

I think it's OK, and I don't mind it, but I do try to minimize it. If I can go somewhere without a lot of people, it's just better all around.


Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Paul B. Walker, Jr.
 

I DX from the top of my driveway here in McGrath, Alaska... on a very public road. When i first got here, everyone in this small town wondered what i was doing.. and tons asked.. now everyones used to it and seeing me outside in all kidns of weather, so they leave me alone.  Some people did genuinely think i was trying to talk to aliens.



On Sat, Jan 1, 2022 at 1:42 PM Chris Rogers <crvee8@...> wrote:
Hi Paul,
I find people are generally curious when they see radio equipment set up and like to know what you are doing. I generally tell them it is Amateur (ham) radio as most people have heard of that it is the easiest way to quickly get back to what you are doing rather than talking about MW dxing of which they will probably not understand. 
Of course having the public come up to you often is a real interruption to your hobby so my advice is to stay clear of public parks and find quieter remote bush areas etc away so you don't have these interactions.


Re: Hobbies in Public Areas

Chris Rogers
 

Hi Paul,
I find people are generally curious when they see radio equipment set up and like to know what you are doing. I generally tell them it is Amateur (ham) radio as most people have heard of that it is the easiest way to quickly get back to what you are doing rather than talking about MW dxing of which they will probably not understand. 
Of course having the public come up to you often is a real interruption to your hobby so my advice is to stay clear of public parks and find quieter remote bush areas etc away so you don't have these interactions.


Re: Another silly (?) question.

Tony Germanotta
 

Don’t let it short out. The other leg on an input plug connects to the radio’s ground, so a short will ground the long wire and make the antenna useless.

Also, be careful. Some radio front ends can’t handle the strong signals from a long wire. At best, they will overload and put phantom stations all over the dial. At worst, the static voltage that builds up on the wire thanks to wind and dry conditions can blow out the RF input transistor. There are various work arounds for each situation. Diodes that shunt the static to ground before the input jack, transformers that allow only the signal to pass. Even a light bulb in series shunted to ground that acts as a sensitive fuse. Do a little Googling for options. 

Long wires are wonderful in areas without a lot of noise, but will pick up and deliver all the radio interference in your neighborhood too.  That’s why most folks reserve them for DXpeditions and rely on loops at home, they tend to be less sensitive to manmade electrical noise because they work using the magnetic component of a radio wave. 

And long wires are potentially dangerous when there is lightning about. Don’t think simply unplugging it from a radio will protect your home. Remember, that bolt is jumping thousands of feet through the air, a couple additional inches in your shack isn’t going to stop it. 

Properly set up and in quiet conditions, a long wire can be magic, pulling stations in from around the world. Have fun exploring the possibilities. But protect yourself and your gear too. 

Have a great 2022. 

On Jan 1, 2022, at 7:31 AM, FenDrifter via groups.io <essexmarshman@...> wrote:

Firstly Happy New Year to all! Okay, more newbie help required. I was about to make up a long wire aerial when I realised I wasn’t certain how to do it. I’ve bought a 3.5 mono jack to which I want to attach a single core insulated line. I think it’s obvious I connect to the pin end (central core) of the jack, but what I don’t know is whether or not it matters if it shorts out to the shield?
Any help appreciated 
Drifter


Re: Another silly (?) question.

Paul Blundell
 

What radio is this for?

Paul

On Sat, 1 Jan 2022, 11:31 pm FenDrifter via groups.io, <essexmarshman=icloud.com@groups.io> wrote:
Firstly Happy New Year to all! Okay, more newbie help required. I was about to make up a long wire aerial when I realised I wasn’t certain how to do it. I’ve bought a 3.5 mono jack to which I want to attach a single core insulated line. I think it’s obvious I connect to the pin end (central core) of the jack, but what I don’t know is whether or not it matters if it shorts out to the shield?
Any help appreciated 
Drifter


Re: Kmart AM/FM Radio - Review - March 2021

Paul Blundell
 

January 2022 Update:
I was recently swapping over my radio kit to my new backpack when I came across this radio in my crate of "less" used radios. I put in a new set of AAA batteries and had a bit of a listen around the AM and FM bands.

I noticed that the issue with the drift I noticed on the FM band seems to be worse, with this now needing constant tuning. The AM band still works well, I wonder if this is a fault which is common to this model or if my example is faulty? For a $9 radio, I can live with it as it is not used that often.


Paul


On Thu, Mar 25, 2021 at 10:51 AM Paul Blundell via groups.io <tanger32au=gmail.com@groups.io> wrote:

Recently I was given a small $9 AM/FM radio, this is from Kmart but does not have a model number listed.
Below is some information from the Kmart website. 

“This portable AM/FM pocket radio lets you listen to your favourite stations throughout the day. With clear sound playback, you can choose to listen through the built-in speaker or headphone jack.

Product Details

·       Dimensions/Size: 5.6cm (L) x 11.5cm (H) x 2.6cm (D)

·       Colour: Black

·       Battery information: Requires 2 x AAA 1.5V batteries (not included)

Features

·       Supports both AM and FM broadcasts

·       Telescopic antenna

·       Built-in speaker and earphone jack

Additional Information

·       Warranty: 12-months”

From my testing so far it works as well as I would expect from a sub $10 radio. It runs off 2 x AAA batteries. The right hand side panel has the AM/FM switch, ear phone jack and the volume / off control. The front panel has the speaker at the bottom and the tuning knob at the top. This has two scales, the top is for the AM band and the bottom is for the FM band. The tuning knob is a little weird to use and has a small amount of play, the smallest bump will knock it off station. I spent some time last night tuning around both the AM and FM bands.

On AM, its performance was acceptable, I was able to log a mix of Tasmanian, Victorian and NSW stations after dark. The signal levels were good and even with the analogue tuning, I was able to separate the stations.

On FM, I was able to log all the normal high power broadcast stations, I did try to log the three lower power city based translators, one was a faint trace but the other two were missing. The tuning on this was again sensitive and it was hard to get it in just the right spot.

Overall for a sub $10 radio, I didn’t expect much but would this was more than suitable and it is a good addition to my radio kit.

 

https://ultralightradiodxing.blogspot.com/2021/03/kmart-amfm-radio-review-march-2021.html



--
Paul


Another silly (?) question.

FenDrifter
 

Firstly Happy New Year to all! Okay, more newbie help required. I was about to make up a long wire aerial when I realised I wasn’t certain how to do it. I’ve bought a 3.5 mono jack to which I want to attach a single core insulated line. I think it’s obvious I connect to the pin end (central core) of the jack, but what I don’t know is whether or not it matters if it shorts out to the shield?
Any help appreciated 
Drifter

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