[amsat-bb] AO-51 notes and observations

Andrew Glasbrenner glasbrenner at mindspring.com
Mon Dec 15 17:03:11 PST 2008

Just a few notes on AO-51 to share with the group.

We are now back to the "normal" uplink arrangement. 145.920 and 435.300 for 
normal repeater use, and 145.880 and 435.150 for QRP use ONLY. While 
switching between the two pairs tonight I heard folks calling stations that 
were operating on the other repeater. Sorry for the confusion by switching 
back so fast to the 145.920 uplink, but we had to do it to make the QRP 
channel available.

I'm convinced not all of our problems are related to the cordless phones. I 
heard tonight whistlers, blowing in the mike, and folks giving extended CQs. 
All of these are totally unnecessary, but to be expected out of some portion 
of the newbies just getting their feet wet on satellites. I caught some 
callsigns of some of the ops exhibiting shall we say a lack of "finesse" 
when it comes to those types of behavior, and will be dropping them a 
friendly email pointing them to some suggestions. I encourage other regulars 
to do the same, with a gentle hand. Ben Jackson's guide is a good reference, 
available at http://www.innismir.net/etc/CourteousAO51_v1.1.pdf .

The biggest thing is to not get wound up too tight about the whole thing. To 
quote my favorite SciFi show, "This has all happened before, and will all 
happen again". Those that knew and loved UO-14 know what I mean. If it 
really gets your goat, c'mon up to AO-7, FO-29, and VO-52. We need more 
SSB/CW ops to use these birds, and it's easy as pie. Got an 817 or other 
capable rig with 2m and 70cm? Add an arrow, other small beams, or good omnis 
preferably with preamps, and a PC with SatPC32, and start making QSOs.

We are working on finding the general location of the cordless phones, but 
it takes time. Today I mailed out DVDs with SDR recordings of FO-29's 
transponder and the QRM to some folks that will treat it as an Easter egg 
hunt and find the general location of these troublemaker phones from their 
Doppler curves, and then we'll work at shutting them down.

73, and thanks for the support,
Drew, KO4MA
AMSAT-NA VP Operations 

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