This web page is almost exclusively dedicated to 6m and up - my passion within Amateur Radio.
Please note that I do not QSL via the bureau - E QSL or direct only. For those that wonder, I am a member of the RSGB.
Those who are frequent visitors to the ON4KST VHF/UHF chat pages will have often heard me referring to my anti-radio, fierce wife. For those who cant believe how fierce she really is, here in the first shot (Pic 1) is a picture to prove it
Pic 1 Pic 2
However, if I don't mention amateur radio and give her lots of chocolate, she isn't fierce at all. (As in the second picture, Pic 2)
Now for the more serious stuff >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
My name is Lyn (shortened form of Lyndon) and my main Ham Radio interest is 2m DX and 6m QSOs with a particular interest in Sporadic E (Es) propagation. I have been using 2m SSB for over 40 years and my interest is as great now as when I made my first 2m SSB QSO in 1974 (using a Liner 2 for those that remember that rig). I am often QRV on 2m SSB and my first choice spot frequency is 144.310 (of course only if it's free). The use of 2m SSB unfortunately continues to decline, at least here in the UK despite my best efforts to keep SSB activity levels up. If you don't use 2m SSB now, please try it for a while, you may well be surprised at what you can work. If you live in the UK you may wish to learn that every Monday and Friday evening between 2000 and 2200 local time and every Wednesday morning between 1000 and 1200 local time, there are 2m SSB activity periods and it is during these times, that 2m SSB activity is likely to be at its highest level. Another initiative to increase 2m SSB activity in the UK has been started recently by the 265 group (see their Facebook group "265 club") and the aim of this group is to encourage activity on 144.265 SSB every day of the year. So that QRG may also be a good one to check for SSB activity.
These days most of my QSOs on 2m are via meteor scatter (MS) using FSK441. If I am QRV and at home, I ensure that I make at least 1 MS QSO per day and frequently I will complete several MS QSOs each day. If you require a sked, please drop me an email (my email address is correct on this page) or use the ON4KST chat to arrange it. MS is a very useful way of working DX on the 2m band at distances from around 700kms and out to around 2000km (sometimes at greater distances too - my MS ODX is 2225km) and is an "always on" mode, i.e. it is available 365 days of the year and 24 hours each day. If you have never tried it I sugest you watch this video. It was filmed by G4DCV and its entitled "MS using FSK for beginners" and contains a talk I presented to the RSGB convention in September 2013 >>>> https://vimeo.com/77358505
I would also like to encourage others to try digital QSOs using JT65a on 2m and above. Using JT65a should enable tropo QSOs at distances up to around 800km each and every day from very average VHF QTHs such as mine. JT65a QSOs are possible when the VHF/UHF bands are very, very flat and where there is no tropo enhancement at all. If there is a marginal tropo opening however, using JT65a could allow very long distance QSOs to be completed where QSOs using CW or SSB may not be possible.
Although I use only a small antenna (a 8 el G4CQM) I have found that I can also make QSOs using EME. Unfortunately I have a non-elevating antenna and I live in a very noisy enviroment so opporuntities for successful EME QSOs are somewhat limited. I can only make successful EME QSOs when the moon is just rising and when it is rising to the north east (the only direction where noise here is reasonably low. Unfortunately these days noise levels here are continuing to increase and I am now finding it very difficult to copy any signals reflected from the moon.
So far I have completed EME QSOs with the following stations :-
04/04/2014 HB9Q JN47 -23 -- 05/04/2014 I2FAK JN45 -28 -- 07/04/2014 UA3PTW KO93 -24 (new locator) and 07/04/2014 DK3WG JO72 -25. More recently I have also worked RU1AA (KP40), RX1AS (KO59), OZ1LPR (JO44), RK3FG (KO86), DK5SO (JN58), I3MEK (JN55), DM2BHG (JO51) and ES3RF (KO29) on this mode. I have also worked some of the stations listed here more than once.
The equipment I currently use is :--2
For the 2m band - my primary band
2m station 1 >>>>>>>>>
A Yaesu FT-991 (My 1st choice radio for 2m)
The FT-991 drives a Linear Amp, Discovery 2, GS35b tube PA - new PA as from the 1st of March 2016 (max output 1.5Kw but restricted to 400w max at the antenna feedpoint)
On receive I use a SSB Electronics SP200 masthead LNA and the antenna is an 8 element G4CQM Yagi at 12m agl.
To accurately measure my power output and SWR, I use a digital power and SWR meter. This meter is a Wavenode WN2 and is a great piece of kit. Expensive but well worth the money in my opinion. The WN2 will display accurately peak power, average power and SWR at the same time on its display and with the software provided you can see and analyse many other parameters too on your connected PC.
2m Station 2 >>>>>>>>>>>>>
An Icom IC-7600 into a Khune TR 144-PRO 2m transverter. The Khune transverter has an excellent NF and its not necessary to use my LNA with this set up. I recently purchased a small SSPA (A Microset SR-100) to use exclusively with the Icom IC-7600/Khune transverter setup and this gives me a good 100w output. If I wish to use more power output (usually for working stations outside the UK or for MS QSOs), I can drive my Linear Amp Discovery 2 PA to max allowed output with around 22 watts output from the Khune. I use the main station 2m antenna with this setup of course.
The Icom IC-7600
The Khune TR 144-PRO 2m transverter
The Microset SR-100 SSPA
For the 6m band : A Yaesu FT-991 or the Icom IC-7600 (both at 100w out) and a 2 el Yagi with 5 degrees of elevation (great for European Es QSOs). Recently I have started to try MS using JT6m on this band and I have been amazed at my success considering the very small station I have on the 6m band.
For the 70cms band : A Yaesu FT-991 at 50w to a 9 element Yagi.
A picture of my 6m and 70cms antennas follows. >>>>>>
For the HF bands: Occasionally I use the HF bands (20 to 10m) and when I do I use the Icom IC-7600 at 100w with a multiband dipole (just 2m above ground and strung out against the garden fence between my and my neighbour's garden.
My shack - part 1 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
My shack - part 2 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
My QTH is in a NW suburb of Cardiff at about 30m asl with a good take off from NE through to SE. However, my takeoff to the N is very poor - as the following picture shows (taken from my garden facing north). When I am beaming to the north, I am beaming straight at the public services transmitter mast on the hill in the middle of this picture. The Welsh mountains make working anyone in that direction very difficult.
North View in summer
North view in Autumn
North West view
This is a typical path profile of my path to the north. It shows the path between my QTH in IO81JM and GW0AGZ in IO82KS. My QTH is on the left hand side of the diagram and GW0AGZ's QTH is on the right hand side of the diagram. Despite the mountains, signals from GW0AGZ (and most other stations on this very obstructed path) can peak up to over s9. Maybe due to knife edge refraction and aircraft reflection. I am currently exploring why I can work stations in this direction and will update this section of my QRZ.com page when the reasons become clearer. >>>>>>>>>>>>>
However, my take off to the North East, East and to the South East is unrestricted. It is difficult to show good pictures of these better takeoffs (I can't show the view as seen by my antenna as I would need to climb onto the roof), so this is the best that I can do (quality not too good - taken from upstairs room through glass). This picture is as seen looking to the East North East and the view is partially obscured by the trees and other houses. You can see that the further my antenna is turned to the East from North, the better my take off becomes. You can just see the distant edge of the hills as they dip to the costal plain in the centre of the picture.
East North East View
My home and QTH is in the city of Cardiff. Cardiff is the Capital of Wales, its largest city and the 10th largest city in the UK. Around 350,000 people live within the city and its suburbs. Cardiff is also a significant tourist centre and is the most popular visitor destination in Wales with 18.3 million visitors during 2010. My home is is situated within the suburb of Llandaff (itself a city within a city as Llandaff Cathedral is situated right in the centre of the village.)
Here are some pictures of our Cathedral (Taken on the 5/12/12) - its located about 1 mile from my house >>>>>>>>>>>>
Just 8 miles south of Cardiff is our nearest sandy beach. This beach is at Barry Island and the following two pictures are of the beach there. These were taken on a sunny afternoon on the 30th of December 2014 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
And here is a picture of my house>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
I am a keen collector of locator squares and I am always on the lookout for new ones. In May 2006 I lost all my records and since then, after starting from scratch, I have manged to work 370 locator squares on the 2m band.
My 2m (144Mhz) distance (ODX) records per propagation mode follow (all completed since 2006) :-
TROPO : EB8BRZ ( IL27HX) and EA8TX ( IL18QI), both at exactly 2808 Km - SSB (A long distance for tropo propagation)
MS (FSK441) : RU1MS (KO48VR) at 2225 Km - FSK !!! NEW MS ODX completed on the 12-08-2013 - A BIG QRB for my small antenna !!!
You will note that my ODX on tropo is to the Canary Islands (EA8). Despite a poor takeoff to the SW, in the very best of openings I can work to the Canary Islands on tropo over rising ground just behind my antenna. I have been fortunate to work a number of squares there in several openings since 2006 - working EA8 via tropo is one of the few benefits of living in the SW of the UK. Several Es events to EA8 have also provided my ODX for this type of propagation and these distances will be hard to beat with my current setup.
During good tropo openings you may hear me from my portable location in IO81LS, near Abergavenny, South Wales. The portable site is around 550m asl with a fantastic take off from NE through to South and is perfect for working DX deep into Europe. This spot is on the very edge of the Welsh mountains and there is no higher ground until my RF reaches Germany. Best DX from there on tropo was to HA8CE in KN06 square. When portable my current setup (2m only) is a Yaesu FT857d, a 200 watt amp (Microset SR-200) and a 6 element long yagi (from Sandpiper - a local supplier) at 6m agl on a portable mast.
Amongst my many other interests, I really enjoy steam trains and here is a recent pic taken at Paignton (Devon) station in late July 2016. Its a pic of 7827, Lydham Manor and this pic portrays a typical GWR scene from the late 1950s >>>>>>>
Latest 2m DX news >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Tonight I had another rare opportunity to make a tropo QSO with the Canary Islands (EA8). This time I only worked 1 station there, EA8TX, Fernando in IL18QI. The distance to lL8QI is 2808 km - that's a long way for a tropo QSO. The last time I did this was in 2012 or maybe 2013. I have a very poor takeoff to the south west and I still find it amazing that I can work that distance over rising ground right in front of my house. I also worked some French stations in IN78 and IN95.
This morning I worked yet another rare "wet" locator (JO07KU) in a MS QSO with Martin, GM6VXB/P. This time Martin was working from an oil platform. Total locators now worked since May 2006 is 370. I am well on my way to my target of 400.
I worked another rare "wet" locator (IO98GC) in a MS QSO with Martin, GM6VXB/P working from a fixed oil support ship.
Today Reg, G8VHI was travelling home on the cruise ship Britannia from Norway to Southamption and had permission to operate on the 2m band (and 70cms) as G8VHI/MM. This gave me the opportunity to work the rare "wet" locators JO15, JO14, JO13 and JO12 on the 2m band - all these were new locators for me. Thanks a lot Reg
I found the Perseids meteor shower to be very good this year and I completed around 40 MS QSOs without trying hard to make as many QSOs as possible - as I have done in most previous years. New locators worked were IO44 with a back scatter MS QSO and JP92. I also worked C37MS in Andora for a new country. Some highlights include working TF3ML/P again in locator HP93 in a very short QSO and a QSO with OH1ND that started as a MS FSK441 QSO but ended as a SSB MS QSO as some of the bursts in our QSO were very long indeed. My only regret was failing to work TF3CY/P in IP24 as IP24 would have been a new one for me. Unfortunately TF3CY/P couldn't copy me despite the fact that I was receiving many, long strong bursts from him. (I think he certainly had a major RX issue)
I worked another new loctaor today, JP55Xf .....thanks to a MS QSO with LA/SM6EAN
There was a brief Es opening this afternoon to Italy. I worked IZ8YBS (JM89CH) for another new locator and also IK7LMX (JN80XP). Both stations were very strong here. I was also heard by SV8PEX in JM99 but didnt complete a QSO. In around a month I have made QSOs with stations in 8 new locators - an amazing total considering that in most years I manage to work only 1 or 2 new ones.
Lars had moved from JO29 to JP44 and I completed yet another MS QSO with him as LA/SM4IVE in JP44xa for yet another new locator
There was a brief Es opening this afternoon to Morroco. I worked CN8LI (IM63NX) there. In fact I worked him twice as on the second time I heard him, no one else called him so I called again to say Hello.
I worked a new locator today thanks to a MS QSO with Lars, LA/SM4IVE in JO29OD.
In the last 2 days I have added another 2 new locators courtesy of meteor scatter QSOs with ES0UG who had moved from KO18 to KO07 (KO07 was the new one) and with LA0BY/P in JP42.
Perfect timing. I came home after spending the afternoon out with my wife just in time to catch a 2m Es opening. I worked YL2CH (KO15), EW6FS (KO35) and EW6DX (KO45). KO35 and KO45 were new locators for me. So in 2 days I added 3 new locators to my list of locators worked. A few days ago I worked another new one, KO08 in a MS QSO with ES0/DM2ECM. In most years I find it difficult to work any new locators and to find 4 new ones within a few days is quite amazing.
I worked a new locator today in a QSO with ES0UG using MS FSK441. KO18 was a locator I had not worked before.
I completed 2 more EME QSOs today ES3RF (KO29) - a new intial,intial number 13 and RK3FG (KO86)
As the moon rose in my quiet direction today, I tried some more EME. I completed QSOs with DM2BHG (JO51) intial number 12, I3MEK (JN55) and RK3FG (KO83). I was also copied by some others off the moon including surprisingly, VK5APN.
10/02/2015 and 11/02/2015
There was some tropo here and I was able to complete several DX QSOs from home with DL and OZ stations from home on the 10th. On the 11th I opertated from my /P QTH in IO81LS at 550m ASL. ODX from the /P site was SP4MPB in KO03ht at 1605km - a good distance considering I was not right in the tropo duct.
Today the moon rose in my quiet direction (to the north east) and another opportunity to make some more EME QSOs arose. I completed 2 QSOs with new stations, DK5SO and I3MEK before the moon rose out of my antenna lobe and went into my noisey directions (any heading south of due east)
Today I manged to complete with HA0DU in KN07TM using meteor scatter FSK441. Amazing considering the distance (1843km), the poor meteor rate and the fact that Steve only uses 50w to a 6 element yagi at 8m AGL. KN07 was a new locator for me so I was very grateful for the patience Steve displayed. Thanks Steve
Today I worked a new locator using FSK MS thanks to a QSO with Martin, GM6VXB/P in rare locator IP90. My locator total now stands at 329.
Today I worked a new intial and new locator using EME JT65b thanks to an EME QSO with RK3FG in KO86hp. My locator total now stands at 328.
New locator number 314 was worked today thanks to a MS QSO with Alex, EB5AL in IN90wb. Alex uses just 100w to a 9el yagi with no preamp and working him over my obstructed path to the south was a real challenge but after a fairly long QSO, we managed to complete the QSO successfully
The Quadrantids shower was very good this year and I made a number of MS QSOs either just under 2000km or just over 2000km OH4LA in KP20LG produced outstanding bursts when I made a QSO with him near the shower's peak. OH3KLJ in KP21PH at 2042km was the ODX in this shower and a new locator, KN28, was worked courtesy of a QSO with UW8SM (KN28IV). I had been waiting to work KN28 for very many years and so was very pleased when the QSO was completed.
A MS QSO with SP5QAT in KO02 provided yet another new locator for me. ODX on MS in this years Geminids shower was YL2FZ in KO37QI at 2067km. Although this was not a new locator for me, the QSO provided YL2FZ with a new DXCC and a new locator too - Valdis was very happy.
Another new locator worked on MS FSK today - the rare IO99IW, thanks to a QSO with Martin, GM6VXB/P
08/08/2013 - 13/08/2013
The Perseids meteor shower was one of the best I have experienced here. I completed my MS ODX at 2225 km and worked 6 new locators.
A late season Es opening occured during the evening of the 13th. It was very spoty here though and I managed just 2 QSOs in the south of Spain.
Another new rare locator worked on MS FSK this evening- JP75DB - Thanks to a QSO with Peo, SM5EPO/3
Another new locator worked today using MS FSK, this time its JP51NX courtesy of a QSO with Morten, LA9DFA operating at his holiday QTH.
2 new rare locators worked on MS today - JP30 and JO98
07/07/2013 to 12/07/2013
A fantastic tropo opening in this period allowed me to work the new locators JN13, JN04, JN05, JN17 and JO37. I was able to work stations from LA/SM/OZ to the NE, Poland, Czech Republic and east DL in the east, to the SE - HB9 and also south into S France and EA. ODX was to SN7L in JO70ss at 1311km. Perhaps more to come in the next days too. The only LA worked was LA/DK2BJ in JO37NX ( A very rare locator). As at 12:26 on the 12th there is still tropo popagation here in IO81JM
A short Es opening this evening enabled me to work I8KRO/8 in JM88AR - this was a new locator for me. Later in the activity contest, I worked another new locator on tropo thanks to GI7RAU/P in IO65XC. 2 new locators in one evening - that is very good and I am happy.
I worked a new rare locator on 2m FSK MS this morning - SM3RPQ in JP74BT. This locator is very rare on 2m and I was very pleased to complete a QSO with Leif .
At 0801 a short 2m ES event took place. IV3GTH in JN65RU was heard for several minutes but the Es was very unstable so no QSO was completed.
73 Lyn GW8JLY
7640324 Last modified: 2016-10-18 16:51:33, 31532 bytes
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