[amsat-bb] Re: -={Echo Madness}=-

John Geiger aa5jg at fidmail.com
Tue Mar 29 12:06:47 PDT 2011

I think part of the problem is that we are victims of our own success.
There have been numerous articles and presentations about how easy it is to
get on the FM satellites with just an HT or dualband FM rig (and mine isn't
even a true dualband, it just receives on UHF), and this has been so
persuasive, that everyone is now trying it.  That is good, it gives us more
activity, more new grid squares to work, etc.  If the regulars want to get
on and ragchew with each other you need to do that on the SSB satellites, as
the FM satellites don't really support that activity.

Anyways, as most of us who are using less than optimized circularly
polarized beams with elevation and preamps can attest to, you get some
decent fading from time to time on the received signal.  I think this is
what leads to much of the QRM. The satellite briefly fades out so some of
the stations don't know that someone is already talking so they start making
calls.  I have heard quite  a few stations more or less call CQ on the
satellite and they must not hear it very well because I can hear several
stations come back to them and they just keep CQing instead.

73s John AA5JG

On Tue, Mar 29, 2011 at 12:37 PM, Zachary Beougher
<zack.kd8ksn at hotmail.com>wrote:

> Hello Kevin and group,
> >Back to the point, please let me know if you think I
> >need any correcting, I would rather help not hinder.
> >I really enjoy this HOBBY, but I dont know if there is
> >a solution...
> At this stage in the game, there really is no solution per say.  When there
> is 30-40
> guys on ONE frequency trying to make QSOs, what else can we expect?  Yes,
> there are some rude practices going on, but is that any different than what
> happens when we get in our car and jump on the freeway
> at rush hour?  Or how about the grocery store?  All you can do is to 1)
> make
> sure you are not part of the issue, 2) adapt to the situation, even if it
> means not making any QSOs and just listening, and 3) run full duplex if
> you can.  I understand that there are some that might not be able to afford
> a second
> radio, and I am by no means slamming you for that.  I would, however, put a
> second HT/full duplex rig on your list for future purchases.  You will be
> amazed at the difference it makes - trust me!  I thought full duplex
> sounded
> dumb until I tried it, now I don't know if I could do a pass without it.
> Most of all, don't complain about that situation (not that you were,
> Kevin).
> What happens on the road when you "complain" to the other driver about
> cutting you off?  It usually ends up in something pretty ugly.  No
> different
> here - it just fuels the fire.  If you don't like it, do what you can to
> work around the situation and keep your expectations low, and if you really
> hate it, don't get on.  Not all passes are bad - I was on a great afternoon
> pass of AO27 yesterday that covered all of the US, and it was great!  We
> are
> talking of 1-2 crazy passes in the evening, and then the weekends
> obviously - not all passes.  And I am referring to the FM sats - the SSB/CW
> birds are wide open.
> Regarding discussion of switching the uplinks randomly, and
> only notifying a select group...  While this may be the easy way out of the
> issue (until everyone catches on), it definitely does not correspond with
> what Ham radio has at its roots - hams helping and mentoring other hams.  I
> can only imagine how I would feel if I found out that us new hams were
> being
> shut out so the regulars could carry on a QSO without interference.  The
> new
> guys and new guys to come have as much right to transmit as anyone else
> that
> uses them.  Just keep in mind that pretty much everyone here that reads
> this
> was a newbie at one time, made their first QSO, stepped on someone for the
> first time and probably frustrated someone for the first time.
> There has been much discussion about the issue of operator rudeness/busy
> passes on the QRZ forums, here at the BB, and even during busy satellite
> passes comments have been made, but I am not seeing a big difference in
> operating practices - things are still crazy at certain times.  As Clint
> stated, this does seem to be blown out of proportion a bit.  Look at it
> mathematically:  On a typical weekend AO51 pass there can be as many as 30
> stations x 2 QSOs each (not many) = 60 QSOs during a 12 minute pass. That
> is
> 5 QSOs/minute - 1 QSO every *12* seconds.  These are rough estimates, but
> when you think about all these stations on ONE frequency, it should not
> surprise anyone that is gets crazy.
> Just try to enjoy it for what it is - it is a really neat and challenging
> aspect of the hobby.  If we have to put up with a bit of craziness on
> certain passes, I hate to say it, but that is just part of this aspect of
> the hobby.  Again, we are talking about one satellite (mainly AO51) on a
> select few passes.  This is not an issue spread across the board.  There
> are
> still many quiet birds and passes, just take the time to find which ones
> work best for you.
> 73,
> Zack
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Kevin Deane
> Sent: Tuesday, March 29, 2011 3:26 AM
> To: amsat-bb at amsat.org
> Subject: [amsat-bb] -={Echo Madness}=-
> I was hoping to get some feedback from you guys. I have only been operating
> for a short time and had some hicup's along the way. I found some
> recordings
> of when I first started...There were some I could not hear the bird, and
> the
> very first ones were pretty funny. I got some schooling on my form pretty
> quick from you guy's. I wish I would have listened to passes before I
> started, at the time I did not know they existed...
> I saw a post about making one contact per pass, well I am guilty. However,
> I
> have been listening to my passes and I dont think I am too intrusive, and I
> get stepped on all the time. My brother say's that I am terribly addicted
> when I was upset when I could not get in on the maddness when they changed
> the uplink, pretty funny really. I was all checkin the equipment from top
> to
> bottom.
> Anyway, I try to call the new guys, because I remember how excited I was,
> hearing someone calling me. I still enjoy it, wether it be on VHF/UHF or
> HF.
> Is not that the reason we do this is to have fun? Sure there are times I
> get
> frustrated, cant get in or what not. Maybe that is what this is all about.
> Should I just not jump in there and free up the bird that much more, I
> suppose so.
> There are plenty of times when the 51 is not all jammed up, maybe the
> people
> who are all upset about the Echo Madness should just get up early, I can
> hear the east coast pass in the morning, not bad at all as far as traffic
> goes. There are lot's of times I am talking to myself on all the FM Birds.
> In the future, on the weekends when it is REALLY busy, are you guys saying
> I
> should just step aside and not operate because it is too busy? Get Real,
> there is always gonna be pile up's on the weekends. That is why these BIG
> GUNS are big guns, because they want to be heard. You can not tell me they
> are not running all kinds of power equipment and what have you.
> That sucks for us little guys, but oh well I am not crying, thats just the
> way it is and always will be.
> Back to the point, please let me know if you think I need any correcting, I
> would rather help not hinder. I really enjoy this HOBBY, but I dont know if
> there is a solution...
> Kevin
> nvllrc.org
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