[amsat-bb] Western Grid Expedition by K8YSE

fl at papays.com fl at papays.com
Wed Aug 27 17:50:14 UTC 2014

I will be embarking on a grid expedition to some Western
States beginning shortly after Labor Day.  The grids that I
will definitely operate from are:

There will be many other grids on the route but I'll only operate
from them if the situation permits.  This is a tent camping trip and
the weather will play a role in when and if I can operate.  The first
grid will be DN54 although there may be one or two before that
depending on the timing.

I will be using an Icom 910H and an Arrow or Elk antenna rather
than the setup in my truck that was used on the Lake Superior
Expedition.  Setup time and weather will be a factor.  I don't
anticipate operating in darkness although it may be possible at
campsites.  I will be using computer control on the linear birds.

We don't have many satellites now and since AO-7 is now switching
between Mode A and B, it will only be available every other day.  The
primary birds will be FO-29 and SO-50.  There may be some AO-73
but not likely.  If AO-7 is weak, I may operate on CW on that bird

I will be trackable as k8yse-9 (3g/4g) and/or k8yse-12 on RF.

Sometime in October I will plan a short trip over to DM63/64 if
anyone needs those grids.  And on January 1st, 2015, I will operate
at least one pass from FM13 in the afternoon.

I don't anticipate doing LOTW for this expedition.  Cards should be
sent direct.  If you have many contacts to confirm, a log excerpt
can be sent that I can sign and return to you.  Please make sure you
indicate which grid I was in for each qso.  I plan to record all passes
and log on paper as well.  QSO's will be confirmed sometime in

SO-50 is our only FM bird now.  It is difficult to hear and suffers from
QRM.  I'm sure you have witnessed a station operating from a rare
grid that has had trouble making qso's.  Sometimes others are not
hearing the bird but are still calling; sometimes others are not aware
that someone is operating from a rare grid and they will call someone
that they have worked many times.  You can always work a regular
when there is low activity but you and others may only have one
chance to work a rare grid.  Please give those operating in a remote
grid some space to work the bird.  It is not a matter of how much
power you run, but rather a matter of courtesy.

Another issue we have on SO-50 is QRM from simplex users.  You
may hear a word or two from them at the end of a valid satellite
transmission.  They are often very strong and can prevent us from
getting into a satellite.  There is not much we can do about this
problem but if you hear someone on 145.85 locally, please advise
them about the ARRL Bandplan that reserves 145.8-146.0 for
satellite inputs and ask them to choose another frequency for their
simplex activity.  Since they are not running 67 Hz PL, we only hear
them at the tail end of a valid satellite transmission before the
squelch closes.

I hope to work many of you on this trip.  Good Luck.
John K8YSE

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