I have to admit, I do more monitoring than transmitting these days, but my radio is often on ISS APRS or set for WSPR or WSJT.
Another great mode to try is ROS. This mode is not as popular in North Americabut it is definitely a reliable means of communications. If you want a good tool in your toolkit for communicating when the bands are not great, this is one of the ones to have. Jose has done an excellent jobdeveloping it.With 5w, I can get further than with JT65-HF, which is another good mode. Despite reports from the FCC that it is a legal mode, many US amateurs have not yet tried this mode because of initial fears that it was spread-spectrum. Of course, that means it is wide open here in Canada for QRP operators like myself!
Linear satellites are another passion. My wife doesn't like large antennas on the house, so small yagis and an az-el were the best I could do. This works out well since I am able to work Europe and South America with my small setup. The guys on the satellites are a great bunch and with the help of UT1FG/mm we are able to get a lot of grids in the Atlantic and Pacific!
I may also be heard operating "bicycle mobile" from my KMX RT class recumbent trike with the TH-F6 or FT-817 and Maldol VHF/UHF antenna or OPEK HVT-600, which works well down to 20m.
The stations here consist of the following equipment:
Maxtrac 300 for ARISS voice and Packet
Two FT-817 radios
Homemade digital interfaces
120ah of SLA batteries
2 3ghz Intel computers (Asus)
1 IBM R50 laptop
7m long ground mounted vertical
5 element 2m horizontal and 3 element vertical yagi (homemade)
7 element 70cm horizontal and vertical yagi (homemade)
Pelco az-el rotor (converted PTZ mount)
Homemade az-el controller
Homemade antenna switcher using many Relcom coaxial relays
OSJ pole (homemade)
FT-857D or FT-817ND
The picture above is an old postcard of my work QTH, Collins Bay Institution. This is one of the only walled prisons in Canada.
It was built in 1929.
When I have the rig at work, it is usually:
Hamsticks (75 through 6)
OSJ pole (homemade)
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