432 AND ABOVE EME NEWS

MARCH (2) 1996 VOL 24 #4

EDITOR: ALLEN KATZ, K2UYH;
ENGR DEPT., TRENTON STATE COLLEGE, TRENTON, NJ 08650-4700 (W 609-490-2817 OR H 443- 3184, FAX 609-443-1713, AND EMAIL Allen Katz, K2UYH.

PRODUCTION ASSIST: TOM KIRK, KA2VAD (908-521-2049).

SKEDS CORD & DIRECTORY: DL4EBY/DK0TU, KLAUS TIEDEMANN,
HALSKESTR.35, D-12167 BERLIN, (49-30-7955467), E-Mail: Klaus, DL4EBY/DK0TU

*** NA EME BBS: 704-284-4854 ***

EME NETS:
14.345 1600 Z SAT/SUN;

  • CONTL NA NET: SCOTT, KD4LT AND JAY,K5JL;
  • EUR NET: JOE, K1RQG (207-469-3492).

    EME STANDINGS: JIM STARKEY, W0KJY, 3845 CAPITOL DRIVE, FT. COLLINS, CO 80526, (970) 226-0669)


    CONDITIONS:
    On 23 cm signals were good and contest activity plentiful, but not as great as I had hoped for ... and dropped precipitously during the wee hours in Eur. I think K1FO is right about the effect of "time" on activity. He feels we should schedule for preferred operating time periods, not around Perigee and high dec. 432 activity was higher than expected, especially considering the conflict with the 1296 contest. On 22/23 March the spot light will be on 70 cm and the bands 13 cm and above.

    7M2PDT:
    Shu writes -- Since my last report I worked on 7 Feb JA9BOH, JA6XED (O/O) for initial #9, IK5WJD (M/M) #10, on 12 Feb JR9NWC (M/M) #11, on 17 Feb, JA2KRW (O/O) #12, on 26 Feb JA5OVU (O/O) #13, and on 2 March JA2JRJ (O/O) #14 and UR5LX (O/O) #15. I will replace my current 4 yagi array with 8 x FO25s in the near future.

    DF0SHY:
    Christoph (DF9CY) reports -- I was on with DL0SHF on Saturday night of the contest, and worked on 23 cm: SM3AKW, JH3LUZ for initial #57, F2TU, HB9SV, JA4BLC, DD1XF, F1ANH, F5PL, HB9BHU, F6CGJ, OZ4MM, OE9XXI, LA8LF, OE9ERC #58, ZS6AXT, OH2AXH, F5AQC and SM2CEW. I found conditions changing rapidly with echoes loud and lot weaker minutes later. We will be on 10 GHz on 23 March - skeds are most welcome! In the future we will be concentrating on making major changes to the whole system. We hope to minimize cable losses on 23 cm, and become QRV on other microwave bands.

    DL4MEA:
    Guenter emails some news of his EME activities -- The last time I operated EME was during the ARRL contest. I finished my antenna, and used it with success for the 1st time, during this contest. Since then my personal life has been very busy - particularly on weekends, and I have not had as much time as I would have liked for EME. [There are a few other things in life besides EME, but not many!] Skeds are always welcome Monday - Thursday evening between 1800-2100, weekends only on direct appointment (dl4mea@amsat.org or http://www.scn.de/~koellner). Regarding my operations, I still have to improve my reception. The rig is IC475, home-brew K2RIW (new pair of 4CX250s and stable 2.3 KV supply), MGF1302 preamp (DJ9BV style) and home-brew 6x33 el DJ9BV's OPT-70 yagis.

    EA6/DF5JJ:
    Peter received bad news from Mallorca. His dish was totally destroyed by a big storm. He has not yet returned to asses the full damage, but will not be QRV in March. He is scheduled to return to Mallorca on 15 March. Peter also reports that he gave a lecture on 23 cm EME to a microwave group in DL. The response was so positive that he predicts pile-ups on 1296 from all the new comers!

    G4DZU:
    Doug writes -- Things weren't too good in the 1st part of the DUBUS contest. The moon was just getting to the end of my window at 0000 on 2 March. But I couldn't hear anything off the moon, the local beacon was down about 30 dB, so I took the right decision and went to bed. Once it was light I found I'd forgot to screw down an SMA connector, when I mounted the pre-amp on the feed, tut, tut. Due to problems with the cathode bias, I was only running 100 w at the feed. This is not enough for reliable contacts with my 10' dish. On 2 March I did QSO OE9XXI and OZ4MM, and on 3 March LX1DB for initial #12. I CWNR F1ANH and F6CGJ. I will be QRV again during the 2nd March SW. I was also active in the Feb SW, with 400-500 w in the shack and about 2 dB of feeder loss. I guess that things are finally working OK as I can hear my echoes, faintly, in 2 KHz BW. On 3 Feb I was up till 0300 local and QSO'd KB2AH (569/449), N2IQU (559/449), CWNR AA6WI - he was hearing too much ground noise at the time, heard SSB QSO between KB2AH and K5JL. On 4 Feb echoes were FB, until I called K5JL. There was an almighty bang as a flash-over in the PA tripped the ckt breakers and took out the bias transistors. As it was 0100 local, I decided to go to bed, and missed a sked with WB5LUA - actually I did not learn of this sked until the following day. A good way to arrange skeds with me is via Internet. I access my mailbox at least every day. My email address is Doug, G4DZU

    G3SEK:
    Ian goes back to Nov to catch up on his reporting -- In Nov, including the 2nd part of the ARRL contest, initials were W8MQW (O/O), CN2EME (559/559), JS3SIM (M/M), DL6NAA (O/O), F5FLN (449/449) and F5HRY (O/O). Dec brought initials with HP3XUG (O/O), DK8LV (M/O) and W9QXP (O/O). In Jan I had some RX problems due to water in the RX feedline, that also carries 12V DC - never heard "electrolysis noise" before! The only QSO was with LX1DB (559/559). K3HZO was (O/T) on sked - a good signal in spite of the problems. Feb was also a quite month for me due to lack of time - nil from JR9NWC on sked, and worked only K1FO (549/549) and K5GW (549/549) for another initial (#). March was also time- limited due to home improvement activities, but I did work JA2KRW (439/449) # when testing on Friday mid-afternoon, W7CI (449/449) and KD4LT (559/549) Friday night, and KA0RYT (O/O) # on Saturday evening. The QSO with KA0RYT was a special treat for MN and WAS #40 - my 1st new state in six years! This brings my 432 EME standings to #238 initials, 50 countries and 40 states. Polarization rotation continues to provide many QSOs that would have been completely impossible on fixed horizontal pol, and quite a few that would have been much more difficult with only switchable Horz/Vert pol only. Unfortunately, family commitments have targeted the two most important EME weekends of the spring and summer, so I won't have much operating time for the 432 MHz part of the Eur/DUBUS contest, and I won't be able to come to the EME conference. But I'm DETERMINED to go to Weinheim in Sept and hope to see some folks there.

    JA4BLC:
    Yoshiro has important news on 5760 EME from JA -- Our radio authority told me that I had been given wrong information concerning possible frequencies for 6 cm EME operation. As a result of to their mistake, I have obtained a special license for 5760-5762 MHz EME operation! I have 25 w and am 1st ever in Japan. I will do my best to finish the station quickly. On 2/3 March I was primarily active on 1296. Despite the failure of my TH308 PA, I managed to install my old 7289s amp in the rack, and get 300 w out. I worked DL0SHF, OH2AXH, F6CGJ, F1ANH, F5PL, F2TU, OZ4MM, SM3AKW, OE9XXI, HB9BHU, VK5MC, JH5LUZ, JH3EAO, OZ4MM dup, ZS6AXT, OK1KIR, I2COR and DF3RU during the weekend. Heard but not worked were VE6TA, HB9SV and SM5DGX. On Sunday, I replaced the 1296 MHz preamplifier at the feed. The old MGF1302 (NF 0.6 dB, gain 17 dB) was replaced with an FHX35LG amp followed by an MGF1200 (NF 0.3 dB, G 35 dB). This increased Sun noise vs. cold sky noise from 12 dB to 14 dB! I will be on 2304/2424 MHz during 23/24 March contest/SW. (My email address is Joshiro, JA4BLC )

    JA9BOH:
    Kimio was not active on 23 cm this past month due to WX problems. But reports that JH1WLK, Sigeru Motohashi, is now QRV on 1296 with a 3.8 m dish and 100 w HPA. His mail address is Kimio JA4BOH. Kimio plans to back on 23 cm in the Spring with a bigger ANT and AMP.

    JR9NWC:
    Hideyuki's EME QSO results for 2 March follow -- partial JR9NWC K5WXN (M/?), nil JR9NWC W9QXP, nil JR9NWC WB2VVV, nil JR9NWC W7FN, nil JR9NWC KB8ZW, nil JR9NWC K5JL, nil I5MPK JR9NWC, nil IK1MTZ JR9NWC, nil F5HRY JR9NWC, nil DL8OBU JR9NWC, nil G0RRJ JR9NWC and nil PA3CSG JR9NWC - QRM from snow noise on the last 3 of these skeds. His system consists of 8x21 el hor pol yagis, FT726 and 3CX800A7-2 HPA and MGF 4318D LNA to+SK406/CONV and TS950 plus DSP.

    K1FO:
    Steve again found good activity from Japan on the weekend before the SW. He feels that JA - NA skeds should be made on weekends such as this with local moon time at reasonable hours. He worked on 24 Feb KA0RYT, JA5OVU, JA2KRW and JR9NWC, on 25 Feb N4PZ and JA9BOH, on 02 Mar K5AZU - good to hear Ray back on after a long absense and with a real big signal, also worked on 02 Mar were WA7BBM, KA0RYT and ON4KNG, on 03 Mar W7CI, DL3YEL, DL9NDD and WA6BJE, on 04 Mar N4PZ, NC1I, VE6TA partial, he was sending 'K2UYH', VE6TA complete QSO and W8MQW. Steve missed his 7M2PDT sked due to the late time that it was at. Conditions over the 2 weekends were again excellent with little Faraday rotation. Steve expected low activity with the 2 m and 23 cm contest on the SW, but he was surprised to hear reasonable NA activity, but almost no activity from Eur. Conditions over the two weekends were again excellent with little Faraday rotation. Steve is looking forward to the REF/DUBUS 70 cm Contest weekend and the arrival of Spring. Although he has not had any damage to the array, winter has been absolutely miserable with a new all time snowfall record for CT (100" / 2.5M) and still counting! This broke the old record which was set only 2 years ago! Steve's 70 cm EME totals are #487 initial, 49 states and 74 DXCC.

    KD5RO:
    Dave writes -- Since my last report, back in June, I worked on 23 cm EA6/DF5JJ for initial #55, KB3PD #56, DD1XF #57, EA3UM #58, VE3BQN #59, OK1CA #60, DJ9YW #61, DF9QX #62, VE6TA #63, VE1ZJ #64, K3EAV #65, OH2AXH #66, HB9BBD #67, VE1ALQ #68 and JH3EAO #69. In addition, I've had several SSB QSO's, even with the 160 w level I've been running. On 8 April, I worked OE9ERC (57/43) and KB2AH (56/43), on 6 May OE9XXI (57/43) on SSB, on 5 Nov DL9EBL (58/55), and on 3 Dec KB2AH (56/42). This past Fall, I began work to finish up my UPX-4 6 tube amp. I sent the cavity to KB2AH, who had offered to finish the machine work, and as luck would have it, it got lost on the return trip to me. Fortunately, Tom had insured it, so when the settlement was made, Tom sent me one of his 6 tube beauties. I had it ready to go as a surprise to Tom and others for the last SW (Feb), but once again, Murphy struck! I was getting a very stable 600 w out and was echo test ing the night before the SW when my plate transformer decided it had had enough of 1.5 amp peaks and let go. I am still working on finding another- can anyone help? I also made an attempt to get on 3456 this past Fall to work WB5LUA, VE4MA and DL9EBL. I have 50 w at the feed of my dish and a 0.6 dB NF. But, when I put the feed in the dish, I couldn't find the Sun (or the Moon, of course). So, no joy. The problem turned out to be a feed offset problem caused by the constant high winds we have here. The feed support is a "button-hook" type and when the dish is stowed, the feed is vertical, of course. The wind beating on the support caused it to bend slightly, causing a 6 deg el offset, which I hadn't noticed. Well, when I looked for the Sun, I never went 6 deg from where it should have been, so I never found it and assumed something else was wrong. Now that has been fixed, and as soon as better WX comes, I'll try again to get back on 9 cm. I have one comment to make: I am concerned (as are some others I've spoken to), that EME QSL'ing is becoming less popular, at least on 23 cm. I am surprised at the number of stations who have stated that they are not interested in QSL's (several Stateside and at least one European recently). It used to be the case that a QSL was the final courtesy for a QSO. There are those of us who enjoy sending and receiving QSL's as confirmation of the contacts which, though they may not be that much of a challenge to some, certainly still are to others. I take pride in my notebook of QSL's and pictures from the EME stations I've worked, and I guess I thought that was the way it was with all the others of my kind. I doubt that the excuse of the expense of QSL'ing can be made - I don't know of anyone in this part of the hobby (EME) who would be financially strapped by the expense of a few QSL's now and then. No matter what ANY of the "Big Guns" say, there is still no guarantee that you will work a station who comes on the air, and the QSL is the trophy of that contact. By the way, I still need QSL's from: OE9ERC, VK5MC, EA6/DF5JJ, VE3BQN, VE1ZJ, and HB9BBD.

    PA0PLY:
    Jan's group is worked to upgrade there 23 cm EME capabilities. Back in the ARRL contest using a 2 m dish with a 2 x 7289 PA running about 150 w, they worked OE9ERC and OE9XXI on sked and IY4ARY on random. Jan's asks about QSL info for IY4ARY? [Try contacting I4BER.] They are now working to improve their 1296 system. They are constructing a 6 m dish and new HPAs using YD 1060 and YD 1333 tubes... but do not expect to have the new system ready in time for the DUBUS/REF Contest.

    VE1ALQ:
    Darrell says that none of his Mar skeds were completed -- I did hear S59DCD (?) on one sequence only at the 20 min mark. I had to leave the moon on 2 Mar with 56 deg of el remaining due to ice in my AZ encoder drive chain that caused the sprocket to drop off the chain. I did get it reinstalled for the 2nd night, but again was forced off the moon at 48 deg (el increasing) due to 55 cm of snow fall and very, very high winds (the worst storm of the year at this QTH). VE4MA was my last entry at 0136. I did work a total of 20 stations in the 23 cm portion of the contest and managed to pickup an initial with DD1XF for #60, so all was not lost. I found condx much better on the 3rd in spite of the storm. Far less libration than on 2 Mar. I also worked WA4NJP on a sked at 0240 on 5 Mar for initial #61.

    VE6TA:
    Grant sends a list of stations worked during the 23 cm segment of the Eur Contest -- I QSO'd on 2 Mar OE9XXI (559/449), OZ4MM (449/429), KB2AH (559/439), VE1ALQ (449/329), F6CGJ (O/O) for initial #41, F1ANH (O/O), F5PL (O/O) #42 and N2IQU (549/539), and on 3 March DJ9YW (O/O) #43, K2UYH (O/M) and OE9ERC (55/33) on SSB. I also had a couple skeds with JA4BLC, but not much luck as my azimuth calibration is not very accurate in my western window, especially with a major storm blowing. Sunday evening despite high winds, I was able to get the 70 cm array on the moon and was pleasantly surprised by the activity. I worked NC1I (549/439), ??? called and K1FO (O/O). I hope to be on 70 cm for the next contest segment, work schedule allowing. W4HHK: Paul had no luck with his 13 cm skeds on 2 Mar. Nil was heard from HB9SV. On the 3 March he did better, and worked WB5LUA (459/449) and OH2AXH (O/O-459) for initial #30. He asks stations to look for him on 13 cm during the coming contest weekend.

    ZS6PT:
    Pete's dish was damaged in a bad storm last Dec. He had to pull the whole antenna down for repair. But its now back in place. He is working on a solid state HPA, and is having a difficult time locating devices. Can anyone help him locate some Motorola MRF392s. Peter's FAX is +27-11663-6676.

    K2UYH:
    Mother nature was a little kinder to us this SW. We did have snow again, several inches, but there was no wind. I was, thus, able to leave the dish tilted over to minimize accumulation. It was also a little warmer. This reduced problems with ice on the dish track. Our only problem was lack of Eur activity during the prime hours of our limited moon window. Hank, KC2TA assisted with operation on Saturday, but was unavailable on Sunday. QSO'd on 2 March were at 0003 SM3AKW (559/559), 0019 F5PL (559/549), 0056 OZ4MM (569/559), 0107 F2TU (559/549), 0114 F6CGJ (559/559), 0126 OE9XXI (579/569), 0134 HB9BHU (559/559), 0140 N2IQU (579/569), 0143 KB2AH (589/569), 0157 K3EAV (559/559), 0204 F1ANH (559/559), 0207 K5JL (569/559) and 0211 AA4TJ (559/559), and on 3 March at 0009 F5AQC (559/559), 0014 OH2AXH (559/559), 0018 ZS6AXT (559/569), 0025 W2UHI (559/559), 0031 LA8LF (559/569), 1117 WD5AGO (559/559), 0126 VE6TA (339/O), 0137 OE9ERC (55/56) on SSB, 0144 OK1KIR (559/559), 0206 VE4MA (559/559), 0210 partial DF3RU (559/-lost) and 0848 JH5LUZ (O/O). Got aways include VE1ALQ and a JA??? who called us after JH5LUZ - too much ground noise and attenuation from the trees. We were also listening during the JA window on 2 March, but heard only K3EAV. During the 2nd contest weekend we plan to be on 432.

    NETNEWS

    JH0YSI
    sends sad news. They lost the big array, pictured in the last NL, in a heavy snow storm. It will be some days before they are again QRV and ready for skeds.
    GM3JFG
    has been in the hospital. Ian is now back home and hopefully doing much better.
    EA3UM
    Magi's email is Magi, EA3UM
    W2UHI
    reports good conditions on 23 cm in the contest.
    W0KJY
    found conditions very bad - possibly equipment problems.
    WB5LUA
    QSO'd OH2AXH on 13 cm for an initial.
    VE4MA
    worked 10 stations on 23 cm in the contest.
    WA4NJP
    made 4 QSO's on 23 cm. His new dish is not yet completed.
    W7CI
    worked W17Z and K5AZU (LU) for initials and a new state.
    DL6WU
    is back on 70 cm with full power after locating a good used 8938. He notes that he is concerned about possible severe power restrictions in D-land in the future.

    FOR SALE:

    AK2F has for sale a Lunar Link (K1FO) Amplifier Model LA-70BK (70 cm) including 2 new Eimac 3CX800A tubes, assembled/never powered up, needs HV power supply for $1495. He also has an Icom IC-471A (70 cm) multimode rig, with sequencer and GaAs FET preamp installed internally for $450; GaAs FET preamp: MCM NF 0.36 dB for $60; and Toko relay $60. Contact Woody (201) 584-5709 in evenings. (Mailing address is 10 Berry Ln., Randolph, NJ 07869 or Internet AK2F

    WA8WZG has Andrew's connectors and cables of all sizes and types for sale. Contact Tom at 419-732-2168.

    ZS6PT is looking for some Motorola MRF392s. Please send cost info. Peter's FAX is +27-11663-6676.

    KB2AH is producing VE4MA like 1296 feeds with built-in IMU type circular polarizer. He also has a complete line of 1296 HPAs (6, 4, 2 or 1 x 7289 amps) available.

    UR4LL has for sale new GS23B tubes and 2 stage commercial 70 cm PAs originally manufactured for Russian military stations. The PAs can produce a full 1.5 KW. Tubes and PAs may be purchased through Rainer, DF6NA (R. Allraun, Trautenauer Str 12, Wuezburg, 97074 Germany, Tel 0931-86315). Contact Rainer for more information.

    K2UYH is looking good 7650s and 7289s. He is also still interested in a 12' or larger dish good for use on 10 GHz EME.

    TECHNICAL

    This month Peter, DF5JJ, has sent in info on what he calls a "trick" to improve receiver performance when using a hybrid to produce circular pol. I have also included info from N1BWT on using a Chaparral TVRO feed on 3 cm. This type of feed was used by W2DRZ/K2TXB during their 10 GHz EME tests in the summer of '94. The write up was taken from the Cheesebits Magazine of the Mt. Airy VHF Society - TNX Pack Rats.

    FINAL.

    This month the NL is a bit thin and a bit late. The small size is primarily the result of the 3 week period between SWs this month. 3 weeks is not enough time for all the reports to arrive. The lateness, however, was not a result of the short turn-around, but due to travel and unexpected family problems (my wife's sister passed away). Klaus, DL9EBY has already produced a new up-dated version of the '96 EME Directory. To save time and effort he will be mailing this Directory, directly from Germany, to everyone on the active EME list. I think Klaus deserves a our thanks and a big cheer for this terrific effort! (I have a number copies of the earlier Directory which were reproduced thanks to the efforts of W1ZX. Let me know if you would like some extra copies.)

    Plans for EME96 are moving a long. It is not too early to get your hotel reservations in for the conference. (I and many others have made them already.)

    There are again minimal skeds this month because of the Eur/DUBUS Contest.

    The 2nd part is on 23/24 March, with activity on 70 cm and 13 cm and above.

    Please keep the info coming. More technical material is especially needed.


    CU in the contest on 432. 73 - Al, K2UYH.

    MAR 23
    
    Time   10368.050
    
    1730z WB5LUA - DL0SHF
    1800z WB5LUA - EA2BK
    
    MAR 24
    
    Time  432.070         1296.050         2304.050       10368.050
    
    0030z              N8DJB  - VE1ALQ
    0100z              WA7BBM - VE1ALQ
    0130z              WA9FWD - VE1ALQ
    1000z                               OK1KIR - JH3EAO
    1030z                               DF3RU  - OK1KIR
    1100z                               OK1KIR - OH2AXH
    1130z                               HB9SV  - OK1KIR
    1200z                               F1ANH  - OK1KIR
    1530z KD4LT - UA4API
    1600z N4GJV - UA4API
    1630z W1ZX  - UA4API
    1700z                                             G4RGK  - OK1KIR
    1730z             VE1ALQ - IK5WJD                 EA2BK  - OK1KIR
    1800z             VE1ALQ - SM6CKU                 S56UUU - OK1KIR
    1900z                                             F6CGJ  - OK1KIR
    1930z                                             WA5VJB - OK1KIR
    
    MAR 29
    
    Time    1296.050
    
    2300z KB3PD - F5PAU
    2330z KB3PD - DF9QX
    
    MAR 30
    
    Time  432.040          432.070         1296.050       1296.075
    
    2304.025
    
    0030z WB6IMC - PA3CSG
    0530z               JA2KRW - WA4NJP
    0600z               JA2KRW - K3LFO
    0630z               JA2KRW - W0KJY  JA9BOH - KB3PD
    0700z                               JA9BOH - KD5RO
    0730z               JA2KRW - W8TN
    1400z DL8OBU - DL3EAG
    1500z EA3UM  - JR9NWC
    1530z               IW5AVM - JA2KRW
    1600z               HB9SV  - JA2KRW
    1630z               DK8VS  - JA2KRW
    1700z               EA2LU  - JA2KRW
    2000z PA3CSG - DL4KG
    2030z SM2CEW - DL4KG
    2200z K3HZO  - IW5AVM
    2230z W2PGC  - IW5AVM
          W4HHK  - DF3RU
    2300z                            KD5RO  - DF9QX  WB5LUA - F5PAU
    2330z                            KB3PD  - DF3RU  KD5RO  - F5PAU
    
    MAR 31
    
    Time   432.040          1296.050          1296.075
    0000                 N7ART  - KB3PD     WB5LUA - DJ9YW
    0030 WE7P - PA3CSG   VE6TA  - DJ9YW
    0100z                WB5LUA - DF9QX     N7ART  - KD5RO
    0130z                VE6TA  - HB9BBD
    0200z                                   VE6TA  - HB9BHU
    0400z                WA4NJP - VE1ALQ
    0630z                JA7BMB - WB5LUA
    0700z                JA9BOH - WB5LUA
    0830z                JR4AEP - WB5LUA
    2230z                KD5RO  - DF3RU
    2300z                AA4TJ  - DF3RU
    2330z                WB5LUA - S59DCD
    
    


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