[amsat-bb] Re: SSB Operation on the Satellites

Patrick STODDARD (WD9EWK/VA7EWK) amsat-bb at wd9ewk.net
Thu Jun 9 13:43:00 PDT 2011

Hi John!

> I'm a very big on computer control.
> It seems that once you find a "free" spot it's yours.
> That is till someone chasing someone else crosses
> your QSO.

This is where spreading out would come in handy.  This
seems to be more of an issue on FO-29, where the
general convention is to adjust the 70cm downlink - by
letting it drift down - while keeping the 2m uplink fixed.
I see this as less of an issue on AO-7 or VO-52, where
adjustments are generally made on the uplink if someone
isn't running full computer control.  For AO-7 and VO-52,
it would still help if stations would spread out a little more
and made use of more of the space on those transponders.

> I really fail to see how someone with a pair of H/T's
> tuning and tuning and tuning can call that fun.

I wish my 817s were HT-sized.  I could easily shrink the size
of the bag I carried my gear in to and from Australia if they
were that small, for example if I had radio sized like the
TH-F6A I have.  :-)

My old laptop bag that could handle laptops with 17" LCD
displays has been perfect for carrying my 817s, TH-F6A, and
all sorts of other items I use for portable satellite operating.
The two 817s would go in the space where a laptop would go,
and then there's lots of other pockets and areas for the rest
of the stuff.  Even space to jam some non-radio stuff, to
avoid overweight charges for my checked bags.

There really isn't so much of the "tuning and tuning and
tuning" you describe when working SSB via satellite.  Yes,
minor adjustments are done with every over during a QSO
or when making repeated CQ calls, but that's nothing
compared to chasing the S-band downlink when AO-51 had
it on in the past.  Now that was "tuning and tuning and tuning"
throughout a pass.

> I'll stick with my FT847 and computer control.

I have thought about trying computer control at length for my
situation operating portable, and have chosen not to go in that
direction.  In any event, I prefer getting on the satellites with the
gear I have and manually adjusting the radios over not getting
on those satellites at all.  I also have the same station available
away from home - sometimes very far from home - as I would
use here in Phoenix.

And, yes - even with the manual tuning I have to do for working
SSB and CW via satellite, it is fun!



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