tnx for visiting folks
For FLEX 5000C, K3 Test Reports use link or scroll down for news.
--Lookup Counter now, add 20 000 from external QRZ system reset 15 Oct. 2007.
ALL QSOs for LOTW have been successfully uploaded today 7 Feb. 2016. The previous problem with the certificates on the new computer is solved.
I am frequently QRV also from Liechtenstein, in various locations, under HB0/HB9CVQ.
All future QSLing will only be LOTW and EQSL, often within 24h. HB9 and HB0 Paper cards, direct or via bureau is finished as per 31 December 2015.
This is normally a stationary mobile activity in CW and some SSB., e.g. testing newly (R&D) developed antennas under pile-up conditions,
all from the car, with typically 60W PEP - 160m to 10m (6).
Other activities, outside the home shack, are HF mobile ( HB9CVQ/m and DK2VQ/m ) and serious CW-SSB contesting in various locations.
MAY 2016 Breaking News: QRMer in Italy, near Rome, now silent!
QRMers, Call sign misuse, busted calls, bad DX- operating : How many people really care about it ?
Our hobby should be fun, and it is, even after over 40 years!
Certainly, some good people do start now to care very much. So let us e.g. support "DX-Code of Conduct" : http://dx-code.org/
Yes , there is continous, witnessed, malicious, willful, aggressive QRMing (160 to 10m CW, SSB, Digital) and associated Call Sign Faking. This is unacceptable QRG/QRM-Terror against me and others.
It includes targeted badmouthing, faking DX-Cluster entries, partly offensive. Misuse of my call by a (known "HAM", oldtimer) pirate/abnormal, twisted mind. Some of the signals are relatively close by (seconds after just tuning), but mostly it is a mix of TX-locations involved. This person has an obsession for QRMing and trying to dominate others hereby.
Simultaneously operated, remote controlled Internet based amateur radio stations (IRB) are involved. These IRBs are located in Europe. In addition this strange person/group? sweeps the HAM Bands ( partly outside!!).
The suspect misuses, since long, as "jingle" for incognito recognition and awareness, former recordings like coded ionospheric sounder signals.
Bands are often polluted by injected noise and other unidentified emissions. Based on delta pwr (dB) =10 x log (BW broad/BW SSB/FM) there are natural power limits in physics regarding the ability of jamming distant targets by broadband signals effectively.
There is pulsed noise (wide spaced FSK), broad-band noise (up to abt. 20KHz and partly even very much wider) , retransmitted foreign BC-Signals, taped audio QSO recordings , smaller/bigger carriers (delta up to 60dB) and regular jamming of DX windows. This is accompanied by slow, bad, pretended beginner's CW-QSOs near/on the very operating QRG. In SSB also whistling is common. Digital signals always occupying half the SSB channel are common. Often rare DX with pile-ups are simulated, just for faking. For further info you also may want to check DX Clusters and announcements. Some OTH-Radar like emissions are possibly also faked. You should use a band scope ( panorama adapter RX ) for viewing these effects!
--Practically daily QRMing, Pirating, Call Faking
By no means am I the only target. Investigations are ongoing since over 10 Years...but strictly ignoring this illegal QRMing is best.
One day he will be brought to justice. Good things sometimes take very long time. I think however I know personally the strange suspect. All it appears to be is an unethical , desperate cover-up activity by a small group of people, knowing but not acting! A blind eye is turned on it.
One technical counter measure: Websdr radios , all over Europe and the world, help greatly now.
------QTH- old trap beam :
QRV since 1968 (DK2VQ, still valid) + HB9CVQ since 1983 (JN47EI) + new since 05/11/2011 AK4IG (USA,VA, Extra Class)
QRV presently from 160m to 10m (6m), CW and in SSB.
My CW-Memberships include:
Main activity HF: 160m-10m (6m) , mostly CW some SSB, including Contesting and some deep technical issues:
e.g. CQ WW CW 2006 1. Place Single Op assisted Switzerland, 1. Place HB9 high CW SO 2007 WPX, 6. Place WORLDWIDE CW ARRL 2006 Single Op assisted, 3. Place HSC Contest 2/2007, 2. Place BUG Party Feb.07 AGCW DL, ALL Asian DX CW 2007 (1.Place HB9) , 2010 Helvetia Contest CW SSB SOHP 1. Place, Continental Leader Europe, Single OP, HP, 40m: 1. Place in ARRL DX CW 2011 , LX7I operated by HB9CVQ , 1. Place (3) BUG party , using my modified Vibroplex Serial No. 243113 , 15. Feb. 2012, AGCW-DL, CQ WW CW 2013 under LX7I ( HB9CVQ Team Member) No.1 in EU, M2, HP....ARRL DX CW 2014 under LX9DX ( op HB9CVQ) , SOP HP 80m No.1 Europe...etc.
Guest Op of TA1EMC 5/2003. Also active in SSB as RRDXA-Team-CQWW (M/M) and Guest-Op from 2004 under HB0/HB9AON ( www.rn-soft.de/new/?Amateurfunk:HB0_-_Liechtenstein_-_Expeditionen )and 2007 CW under LX7I (M/2)( http://www.lx2a.com ). Guest-Op in 2008 CQ WPX-CW under DR1A (M/M) ( http://www.df0cg.de/de/ ) also Guest-Op 2007/2008 at DL1A ( http://www.qrz.com/db/dl1a ),... DD1A, HB9EE, HB2T etc....
------Shack (older pics, Orion 2 sold):
Orion 2 modified Flex 5000C ( in-band TX stn monitor now)
2x36m doublet with remote ATU (SAMS+) at ca. 25m (160 to 10m) , rugged 300 Ohm feeder
SteppIR DB 18E, 2el 40m, 3 el 30 to 10m , 4 el 6m Yagi Beam
Various homemade/ATAS-120A HF mobile antennas for mounting on top of my car
Station:(incl. a lot of EMC measures)
TX max. Pwr: 60dBm out
Elecraft K3s,P3s, ACOM 1000, NCC-1 DX-engineering Phasing Unit for Noise Reduction, ACOM 2000A, Perseus for TX monitoring (+ mod. Flex 5000C)
CW-Keys: Begali Magnum, Begali Expedition, Vibroplex SUPER De LUXE (1965) and in Contests Computer Keyboard N1MM or WINTEST.
All Paper-QSLs ( in and out-going ) , direct or via bureau, are stopped after 31 December 2015.
The many cards received prior will be answered 1. week 2016.
I will from now on only use LOTW and EQSL and upload typically within 24h !
------ Tnx. Anyway enjoy DXing, Contesting or Rag Chewing and Tech-Talk, 73 hpe cuagn.------
++++++Never the less fairness and HAM-SPIRIT will prevail, no question!++++++
Part of my Lab-Work-Bench and some experimental testing and modification results:
Test Report Flex 5000C 14. Jan 2009 see eham http://www.eham.net/reviews/detail/6627
In the following you find recent technical updates and experimental results regarding my Flex 5000C Transceiver.
The F5KC performed very well in ARRLCW DX 09 contest. The focus screen ( PowerSDR/Logging Program) problem in S&P mode and logging will hopefully be solved soon.
(Updated March 2009) The proposed fix with five ferrites on a longer ribbon cable works very well on all bands. Almost ( 60ms) QSK, using RX1, works ok, practically no hick-ups, but relay chatter acoustic noise.
On using RX 2, there is still RF coupling (Rx2 only audio muting), mostly from the 3 thin coax cables coming from the RFIO board. Ferrites will be installed here soon too.
Additional improvement was made by grounding the external cable shields ( e.g. key, PTT) to the thin galvanized ground plane under the Flex and Power Supply. No ESD effects on touching the key anymore. After the grounding the cable shield goes through a CM cable choke and internally 100uH and 4.7nF per pin.
Generally speaking , the EMI Chassis protection principle of Zoning (separation barrier in/outside)is broken by having RCA connectors, Key or Fire-Wire not 360 deg. terminated to the conductive rear panel at cable entry. The connectors are grounded on the inside of the Flex for easy manufacturing, unsuitable for EMC.
Work on the thermal issues in contests: presently solved by taking off the side covers of the chassis and using an external fan , blowing into the CPU compartment. Acoustic noise will have to be reduced here too in the future.
(Update April 2009)
Ferrite loading of the thin coax cables from the RFIO board (RX1, RX2) further reduced coupling. The fact that RX2 is only audio muted requires more experiments, sniffing for uncontrolled RF internally in the Flex on the board to board cabling. The Rx BC Ghost stations effect (spurious) mainly on17 and to some extent on 40mis temporarily solved by using individual band pass filters
( http://www.arraysolutions.com/Hamation/bandpassfilters.htm#top%20of%20page). On some bands depending on selectivity of the antenna used, this effect can be demonstrated. An automated filter band pass selection version is under consideration by Flex , may be somewhere in 2010.
(Update Nov. 2009) SW PowerSDR V 1.18.0
Flex 5000C is now fitted with a functional set of band pass filters (200W, Contesting 160 to 10m) plus individual WARC BP filters (almost 1500$US). The result is very impressive. No Rx BC Ghost stations anywhere and some Rx noise floor reductions on some bands of over 10 dB!
Bad luck: Second time I had to replace a failed RFIO board (1: ESD, 2: CW QSK problem with el.-mech. relays?). Both RX are ok again. One more, unsolved problem however is with additional PA failure. Output is now max 7 W above 17m ( increasing with higher bands). The good news: Service and support by Klaus from FLEX HQ EU, Germany, is excellent !
Present status: Compared to my Orion 2 TT, QSK (QRQ 30 to 40Wpm) and CW feeling are much better here. Band-scope of F5KC is however much better. Flex Software mouse focus problem ( TRX operating surface or logging program ) on the other hand is very difficult to handle in contests.
Still fighting some occasional Break-in CW hick-ups of the Flex 5KC. Additionally the imperfect RX2 muting on TX is causing trouble mainly in CW Break-in with less than 200ms. There is a very disturbing audio bang and S-Meter signals (RX2), way above S9+40. Some investigations still point to another EMC problem, a very time - consuming search effort. RF seems to leak through PA100 connector SV1 HTRX onto the PS 13.8V of HTRX and further into RX2.
Ferrite might help again. More to come, stay tuned.
(Update May 2010) SW Power SDR V1.8.3
In the meantime got great support from Flex EU HQ , now waiting for new software release V2.0 to fix the hick-ups in CW, QSK and RX2 muting.
(Update May 2011) SW PowerSDR v2.0.22
Just started checking out Flex 5KC against K3, ongoing project with operating and measuring ;some previous bugs are eliminated.
First tests however: K3 with Perseus as Band-scope (IF 8.215 MHz + 6 pole BPF +/-200 kHz) is hard to beat in particular in Contesting and QSK QRQ CW.
(Update Aug. 2011) SW Power SDR v2.1.5 and FlexControl
Flex 5000C is now a nice radio, even for SSB / CW contesting. Band Pass Filters are still needed here (Multiband Antennas) on 15 to 10m. Otherwise there are Phantom BC Stations showing up. CW QSK is still a problem based on relay chatter and instabilities. There are some bugs in the SW (in my configuration with the build in Mini-ITX, Dual Core x86, 1.666 MHz ,1GB DDR2 RAM , IEEE 1394 Firewire, Xp professional ). One major one is TX transients , mostly on 40m, tripping my Acom 2000A and forcing considerably less than 1kW output, even with the BPF in line.
Further experiments will include using a faster , external windows7 computer to separate possible computer from radio effects.
There are still some issues when using RX2 . This relates to TRX switching (AGC-SW-no hardware muting) audio bangs , recording crashes and Split operation.
By the way , it is not unusual in the commercial world to fix some first hand EMC hardware problems by Software tricks later on.
What really finally counts is performance.
(Update Nov. 2011) SW Power SDR v2.2.3 and FlexControl
Trying to automate major parts of this station , including SAMs+
(Update April 2012) SW XPpro ,Power SDR still v2.2.3, no Flex Control , DDUTIL not yet installed
SteppIR Controller SDA 100 is now fitted with better EU-control (20) -cable ( about 30m long and 60dB shielding, no foil, grounded both ends ) and HB9CVQ designed transient protection ( driver chips specs max. 50V DC) and RFI-filter ( DB 25 in DB 25 out ). This reduced the RX EMI pick up during tuning and more importantly in the motor hold position (noisy 3V to prevent element movement by e.g. wind) of the DB18E ( 40 to 10m here) by up to 30dB on 30m. The decoupling in the motor housings between contol and RF parts is about 50 dB up to 30 MHz.
SteppIR is informed and works on a solution inside the controller. There is by the way a proof of re-radiation / coupling to my near-by doublet. When the controller tunes the noise bump on my screen FLex 5KC is drifting upwards on 30m (S7 to 9 some kHz ); swiftly reversing when tuning is stopped. Now the drift is reversed ( in the motor hold position ) and an RFI bump is very slowly (minutes) drifting backwards eventually out of band.
My solution is an outside SDA retrofit with probably better chances for higher attenuation of EMI due to more space of larger and more suppression components in an extra AL-Box. The original cable-splicer from SteppIR also needed EMC improvements. After all this retrofitting the worse case motor tuning signal makes the noise floor temporarily jump by typically 10dB on 40m . That used to be almost 40 dB. The bands are now much more quiet and I can better listen to S2 to S4 signals on the higher bands without irritation. Additionally with the Flex ESC ( Amplitude and Phase canceling feature) I can uses this feature even on 160m with only one antenna , 2 RX and my 2x36m doublet @24+ m.
Regarding my jammer/QRMer signal direction finder project (Time of arrival) this is well progressing. There are however geographical difficulties like mountains with reflection issues into some areas near to my QTH. This calls for technical solutions/software to do data reduction. Stay tuned , we will manage and achieve better and faster resolution.
(Update Oct. 2012) since several month I do a lot of R&D on single and two wire Beverage Antennas. This includes test set-ups at HB9EE , as well as mainly at LX7I. These Bev. Ant are 1 or 2 m high and up to 182 m long. Investigated is 160 to 10m performance. All systems are home-brew . Transformers are impedance optimized, Common mode protected. Line to ground attenuation (CM) in forward direction is typically 1(160m) to 5 (10m) S-Units. Rev. direction attenuation ( was 30 dB on 40m Band and 182m !) is now reduced by replacing army field telephone twisted wire by 20cm spacing transmission line (about 5 dB on 10m(!) and 182 m length ). Coupling e.g. ( even >20dB) from 160/80m TX to RX Beverage Antennas is a considerable problem and called for very special Beverage switch-box design with critical protective circuits. Basic reseach into Beverage performance measuring/simulation both amplitude and phase continues as far as weather permits.
(Update March 2013) I recently repaired and calibrated my seriously damaged (LX7I before CQ WW CW 2012) K3 and added a P3 PAN Adapter. It took over 30 h and about 1400 $ US, PCBs needed replacement , traces burnt! Support by Elecraft throughout was excellent! All works very ufb now. Beverage research is still awaiting help in simulations with NEC4 code from the HAMs in the US. The 40m Steppir (dB18E- 40 to 6m) stopped working on 40m-2el in winter with sych-problems. 30 to 10(3el)/6m again fine after increasing PS voltage from 24V to 30V DC. Control line is less than 30m long. Steppir says in some cases it is a torque problem of the motors at low temperatures and moisture. Tests are ongoing. In CW I added a Magnum Key from Begali. This is the best key I ever used so far. Jammer/QRMer signal direction finding project is progressing now at several professional levels in several locations/counties now.
(Update August 2013) Steppir DB18E works again (40 to 6m) ok after replacing the SDA Controller. Much R&D work was done on the SAMS+ doublet antenna coupler (T-Network). Automation via RS 232 and N8LP's LPB2 ( under N1MM still problems). Rewiring coupler-too high inductance for 17 to 10m- and replacing balun (1:1) greatly improved performance. Harmonics radiated (1kW) checked in near field with special test set-up show almost equally good results as in conducted tests via dummy load (up to 68 dB). Doublet 2x36m and feeder R&D work regarding shifting resonances from 160m down to Medium Wave by adding large Ferrite Core at the start into300Ohm feeder. Beverage work is still ongoing outside the QTH, due to space. For this QTH RX ant ( mag. loops) R&D , QRM reduction by phasing (-180deg) continues. In the QRM direction finding project a nice 10 MHz GPS standard (ID-Elektonik GmbH, Germany -Karlsruhe) has been successfully tested and added to the set-up. HB9FX -40m tower- (internet remote radios) has been supported with detailed experimental EMC analysis and a summary/fixing report.
(Update Feb. 2014) Steppir DB18E sometimes not working on 40m anymore, Analysis is ongoing. Working on 300 Ohm Balun design at the feed point of my 2x36m doublet to suppress local noise on the low bands. QRV now from mobile (in motion 40 to 10m). Experimenting with 400W mobile PA and better antennas for my HB0 activities . Second K3 and P3 are now ready to be taken quickly anywhere e.g. to LX7I , HB9EE and other events.
(Update Aug. 2014) 300 Ohm Balun system for the doublet feed line working well now ( 300 to 50 Ohm , common mode choke 50 Ohm, 50 to 300 Ohm back to back, DX Engineering) . Far less coupling into mast (60cm away) now. Symmetry experimentally checked ok 160 to 6m. Local noise (160m, BW 2.4 kHz, partly S9+10) reduction experiments very successful now with, only one antenna- doublet or Steppir Yagi ( port TX RX ant K3 in/out, activating RX Ant ) and using 3 dB resistive power splitter in front of channel A and B of the DX Engineering NCC-1 Phasing network. I do not use a phased RX Array. I split the input signal equally and use phasing in one channel to cancel the noise. ( full theory is still unclear to me ). Adjustment: a little less than minus180 degree. Noise baseline of Pan-adapter left at about 10dB above full canceling level; observing the nearby signals (amplitude) on the band. Dynamic range is about 40 dB on 160m. Above 15 MHz shows decreasing dynamic range. I was able in August now on 160m to work VE stations in CW in the morning again. The reduction effect is also working well, if AGC of K3 is switched off. Preparation for Beverage phase measurements (DG8SAQ VNWA) almost completed now at about TX 10dBm signal level. Next is setting the BV up outside this QTH and measure 160 to 10m. Steppir DB18E works well on 40m now in summer. There seem to be only a winter problem (temperature, moisture...ice?). Mobile antenna ATAS 120 shows losses on all bands 40 to 10m. Efficiency tested on 40m is only 10%!
(Update Dec. 2014) Steppir DB18E still has a 'winter' problem on 40. In position 180 deg.(JA) tuning works fine, not in NORM (USA). Pointing to NA is done now in reverse mode and rotating the antenna mast; after the feeder wire (DP 2x36m) was differently installed. Mobile experiments are making big progress. Three antenna systems, one at the time, can now be taken by the metal car roof construction with center, direct grounding. System 1 is ATAS-120 ( 40 to 6m , modified). System 2 is from DJ0HV www.qrz.com/db/dj0hv big homemade and tailored screwdriver ant. System 3 is big mono-band coils (originally built by HB9BCG) . Radiators 1.3m , 1.9m and 6m (stationary mobile, however when driving, acc. to road regulations, max. height from the ground to the tip of the ant. is 4m ). Ant. capacitances of the radiators in place and stray effects ( monoband coils) have been measured. Now combinations of radiators with needed coil inductance can be reasonably be predicted for resonance on each band. Different tuning procedures have been tested. Generally one needs to understand the radiation efficiency of good mobile antennas is may be up to 25% to 30% on 40m , on 80m 5 to 8 % and on 160m only about 1%. So 100W is producing here a QRPP signal of about 1W. Top loading and capacitive hats ( d=1m) are presently constructed and tested, both for in motion and parked vehicle. Additionally RX receive ant. tests at HB2T/HB9EE contest stn have been performed with a big electric fence. Avoiding the temporary set-up of Beverage-ant. on (farm) land with space for horses) a big existing fence was tested in CQ WW 10m SSB and later elsewhere on the low bands. Matching and pre-selector worked great. EZNEC Simulations (DJ5EU) are hopeful and indicate the feed point should be moved more south for better pattern shift ( USA , JA and reverse). The fence (large horiz. loop, excited vs. ground) is about 1.15m high and has a circumference ( very roughly 150m x 300m) of almost 800m. Testing in other contests and top fence wire changes are planned.
(Update May 2015) mobile ant. testing (50 to 75W RF out, K3) is now very advanced with all 3 systems mentioned above. The independent power/battery is being optimized. We are partly almost 2-S Units better (12dB) than commercial antennas in radiation efficiency. For the first time we were able to conduct meaningful comparisons regarding efficiency over a line of sight, over a valley, test distance of 2.7 km (160 to 10m) with calibrated, selective field strength meter. Results will follow after we hopefully complete mini-drone (TX) testing to evaluate mobile antenna pattern in the far field. Contact problems in mobile ant. are very critical ( very low radiation resistance); so is grounding, EMI reduction of car electronics ( now typ.S1 to S2, 160m to 30m, 20 to 10m not detectable in CW mode BW 250Hz ) , antenna placing ( Top of car ) and coil distance to metallic roof (stray cap). Most critical is the radiator length. Autotuner tests are ongoing. Test with radials will also be made. Most of these tests aim at stationary mobile QTH situations ( e.g. HB0).
(Update Dec. 2015) Further experimental HF mobile antenna tests have been performed. To effectively understand all issues and shine more light into physics, a big EM Software Simulation Project of the mobile antennas was started this quarter in Southern Germany. My car - Audi A6 - was modeled (e.g. Finite Elements) involving powerful, professional Software (way above HAM's good EZNEC) , as e.g. used in EMC automotive industry. First 80m results look very promising. New, 2m long conical Antenna: Induced HF chassis currents and E, H field distribution are studied. Various car park position scenarios - over lossy ground, perfectly conducting metal ground plane and even in free space- all with their associated antenna/car radiation pattern - enable us to study the major sources of loss and efficiency. Parameter sensitivity studies are being carried out. Unfortunately the computation time, for one frequency point, takes sometimes 0.75 to 1.5 hours on fully loaded PC. In parallel there are major efforts to measure losses (L , C, Quality factor) with different approaches in time and frequency domain. Air wound coils, as well as high Q iron-powder inductors are, among others, being investigated. Stay tuned , there is hopefully much more to come.
All rights reserved , Copyright 2006 to 2016 by owner of HB9CVQ , DK2VQ, AK4IG. Citations with source mentioning allowed . HAM and non commercial applications of described procedures/ideas are encouraged.
Notice of liability: Despite careful control of the content I don't assume any liability for the content listed as well as for the external links. The responsibility of the content of the linked pages lies entirely in the hands of their creators.
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