[amsat-bb] Re: (no subject)

Patrick STODDARD (WD9EWK/VA7EWK) amsat-bb at wd9ewk.net
Sat Apr 18 19:44:47 PDT 2009


> Patrick, WD9EWK, and I had a pretty cool CW contact on AO-7 this evening.
> As far as I know (I'm confident Patrick will correct me if this is inaccurate),
> both of us were on full battery power and using handheld Elk antennas. My
> station included one FT-817ND for transmit (at 5 watts out) and another for
> receive, and each was running on its internal battery pack. I pulled the plug
> on my Acer netbook and let it do the Doppler tuning on its internal battery
> pack. I connected both radios to the Elk with a Diamond duplexer, and
> used the straight key I picked up for Straight Key Night this year.

You're right, Tim.  I was using my two FT-817NDs on battery power, 5W
transmit power into my Elk Antennas handheld log periodic.  The antenna
was connected to the radios through a W6ZQ-modified MFJ duplexer, almost
identical to your Diamond duplexer.  Ron - it works great!  Instead of a
straight key, I had a Palm Radio Mini-Paddle on its magnetic base sitting on
top of my transmit radio.

I'm currently northeast of Phoenix, staying in grid DM43iu for the weekend.
There are mountains around here, but they did not bother AO-7 during this
pass.  I worked VO-52 this morning and AO-27 in the afternoon, before it
was time for AO-7.

> Patrick was a solid 579 when he called me, and he worked AJ9K after our
> contact. And unlike me, I believe he is still manually tuning for Doppler.

Yes, still tuning by hand, and trying to conform to the One True Rule in
tuning the higher of the two frequencies whenever possible.  I still want
to get computer control for the radios working via SatPC32, but I did not
want to miss a chance to try AO-7 in mode B tonight.

> I believe these are Patrick's first contacts on Grand Old AO-7.
> Congratulations to him. Here's to many more contacts with our "flea
> power" portable stations.

These were my first two QSOs on AO-7.  I tried AO-7 last summer, using
my dual-band Yagi instead of the log periodic, and could only hear myself
in CW on passes where AO-7 was above 50 degrees or so elevation.  When
AO-7 was around 10-15 degrees elevation tonight, I could hear CW when
my log periodic was leaning against the side of my truck!  And no preamp!!

Thanks to Tim and Dan AJ9K for my first two AO-7 QSOs, and my
apologies for what were probably quick QSOs on my end.  I was hoping
to get them in before the satellite went away from me, and not do too
bad on the CW.  SSB will probably need higher passes for my 5W
portable station, and possibly a preamp, but I can deal with CW.  :-)


Patrick WD9EWK/VA7EWK - currently in Tonto Basin AZ

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