[amsat-bb] Re: S band interference solution

John Champa k8ocl at hotmail.com
Thu Oct 5 10:40:47 PDT 2006


I am happy to report that I get along with my neighbors very well, thank 
so none of these TVI-type suggestions were any problem whatsoever at this 

Have you ever read any texts from the ARRL, etc. on how to manage a TVI 
They are not as popular as they once were, but you can still find them 

They will help you in the social skills areas, another big weak point for 
most Hams.

73, John

>From: Nate Duehr <nate at natetech.com>
>To: AMSAT-BB at amsat.org
>Subject: [amsat-bb] Re: S band interference solution
>Date: Thu, 05 Oct 2006 10:39:00 -0600
>John Champa wrote:
> > I really do get bored reading about all these threats to Mode S from 
> > etc.
> >
> > NOT!
> >
> > These are 100 mW devices...maximum!  That means they have to be 
> > close to your QTH for you to hear them.
>I've got one here that will happily do 250mW all day long... not that I
>run it that way.  All it took was some alternate firmware to bypass the
>normal firmware's limits.  However, 28mW is plenty to cover my house.
> > 1. Pick up your old laptop, or borrow one.
> > 2. Plug in a Linksys wireless PC card from Radio Shack.
> > 3. Download the free NetStumbler shareware.
> > 4. Find the source of the Wifi QRM.
>4a. Explain to the nice Sheriff's deputy why you're walking around the
>neighborhood and into neighbor's yards with a laptop.
>4b. Call your wife and ask her to come pick you up from jail.  Explain
>to wife on the way home that you're not a "terrorist" as the Sheriff's
>summons for your later court date indicates.
> > 5. Knock on his door and ask him to change his AP to a channel 7 - 11
> > (outside the Ham Band)
>5a. Listen to 1/2 hour tirade about how this guy bought the thing at the
>local Best Buy and they never told him about the ham band, and how he
>saw a UFO fly past your tower one night.
>5b. Another 15-30 minutes talking about "What's that tower for, anyway?"
>5c. Spent an hour in his basement with him, helping him click on simple
>web interfaces after you reset his router to a default password and have
>to set it up from scratch because he's forgotten his password... which
>turns out to be "beerrules" and is found on a Post-It note on the bottom
>of the router AFTER you've already reset it to factory defaults.
> > 6.  Reason: He's interfering with a licensed radio service  (be nice!).
>6a. If you were dumb enough to point this out to Joe Sixpack, expect
>another 1/2 hour explaining Part 15.  If you're lucky, Joe will offer
>you a beer at this point.
>6b. If you're *REAL* lucky he might be interested in ham radio.  (This
>is about the only good that can come of this.)  Spend another hour today
>and many more Elmering.  (Yay!)
> > 7. Return to your radio room and operate Mode S until LOS.
>7a. The satellite passed over long ago and it's time for bed anyway.
>7b. Alternatively Joe may have you "help me fix my computer while you're
>here", and you'll spend at least one weekend a month at the neighbor's
>house or another neighbor's house (once word gets around) dealing with
>their computer problems, virii, and other technical duties now that
>you're the "friendly computer guy in the big white house over there!"
> > This is child's play guys!  These are consumer grade wireless devices, 
> > super computers.
> > Fixing such local QRM issues is easier than solving the old fashioned 
> > problems.
>No.  The average public at least understood how their TV worked, or at
>least how to adjust a pair of rabbit ears.  WiFi is "deep voodoo black
>magic" to the vast majority of the population in most neighborhoods
>today.  They think they paid for a system that works perfectly, 100% of
>the time and they have their own "channel".  Some have heard enough to
>turn on the WEP encryption in their routers (crackable, easily).
>(Heck I've seen Engineers where I work stare and boggle at a simple
>Radio Frequency Spectrum chart, like the one you can download and print
>out from the NTIA.  They always ask: "So where's my cell phone on here?")
> > The most troublesome devices I have found , even to WiFi, are 2.4 GHz
> > cordless phones.
> > In that case the only solution I have found is to go next door and offer 
> > buy him a replacement
> > cordless phone of any type he would like EXCEPT one on 2.4 GHz.  That is 
> > cheap
> > solution.  They're usually not more than $79.95 while you probably have
> > multiple Ks of $
> > invested in your satellite ground station.
>Yeah - move 'em up to 5.8 GHz!  Oh... wait...
>Maybe down to 900 MHz... Oh, oops... some of us are there too... hmmmm...
> > For a bunch of supposedly sophisticated wireless guys, you sure don't 
> > beans about
> > consumer grade wireless devices.  That includes our wonderfully 
> > but pessimistic AMSAT satellite engineers!
>I know plenty about them and know I'll end up the neighborhood tech
>support guy for them if I even THINK about talking to a neighbor about
>them.  That and their utterly broken Windows 98 machines they THINK they
>need.  Thanks to mass marketing... "Your child will be smarter if you
>buy them our operating system!"  (No, it has nothing to do with genetics
>or the fact there isn't a single book in the house!)
> > Now get on with the work, and get those birds into orbit!  (HI).
>Ditto on that, at least!  :-)
> > Vy 73,
> > John Champa, K8OCL
> > AMSAT Life Member 1069
>Nate WY0X
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