Category Archives: Equipment

IC-9700: Drift on 23 cm

September 25th, 2020

A question in a Facebook group about a GPDSO for an IC-9700 to be used on 23 cm for FT8 inspired me for a quick test. As I use my IC-9700 for 2 m and 70 cm only from home, I connected a dummy load to the 23 cm antenna socket. Next was to tune it to 1,296.174 MHz (of course) and to call in FT8.

The result in brief: No problem to decode with my regular 23 cm rig (OCXO controlled). Just a moderate drift and the signal appeared about 100 Hz too low. Nothing to worry about.

But never the less, I prefer JT9f on 23 cm, as FT8 is useless on aircraft scatter.

New Bands down to DC

May 7th, 2020

Yesterday I added a logarithmic periodic antenna for the range 28 to 150 MHz to my little antenna farm. So I am QRV now on the amateur bands from the highest DC band 28 MHz up to 2400 MHz.

Antennas at DJ5AR

Recently I got an IC-7300 with extended frequency range to cover the 50 MHz and 70 MHz, as well as the new Irish bands 80 MHz and 60 MHz.

So I am looking forward to have some cross band QSOs to Ireland soon!

I took down the 3 cm dish for some work on the rig. And I know, the 70 cm yagi is much too close to the new antenna, but I have been too lazy to dismount it.

Addendum May 18th, 2020

First PI4 decodes of EI1KNH in IO63VE on 40 MHz.

Testing the new Kuhne MKU 23 G4 on 13 cm

November 22nd, 2016

Today I configured the MKU 23 G4, I ordered from Michael in Friedrichshafen to perform a RX test. Via aircraft scatter it was no problem to receive the beacons OZ7IGY in JO55WM over 670 km and OK0EK in JN89VJ over 689 km. The sun noise is at a level of 6 dB.

ra-maps-jn49cv89kf-2016-11-26-07-21Beacons regulary receivable on 13 cm (green: TR / blue: AS)

The motivation is high now to configure the TX line as well 😉

Dismantling the Rotor

August 2nd, 2016

After having serious issues with the elevation drive, I dismantled the BIG RAS Rotor last weekend. A construction to support the dish by keeping it in an upright position has been installed.

DSC_1124aAfter opening the case of the rotor, the failure could easily been seen: The cogwheel does not fit into the worm gear. Instead it slips over it. I hope to find a solution soon.


Update 2016-08-03: SPID offered to check and repair it as a warranty case! So it is on the way to Poland now. TNX to Jacek of SPID Elektronik!

10 GHz up and running!

June 12, 2015

DSC_2010bWith assistance from Franz, DF9ZT, I got my 10 GHz rig repaired and mounted it yesterday evening. Hope for the first QSOs soon with the 50 cm dish and 1.5 W. Beacons heard so far are DB0MOT (41 km), DB0MMO (90 km), DB0AJA (132 km), DB0ZDF (6 km), DB0FGB (263 km) and DB0ANU (182 km).

Thank you very much, Franz!

Operating a SDR like a classic radio

January 9th, 2014

For a couple of weeks now I am using a DJ Control to handle my SDR. It is much more comfortable compared to working just with mouse and keyboard. An user interface, written by Tobias, DH1TW makes it possible to combine the benefits of a software defined radio with the comfort of an analog transceiver by pressing buttons and turning knobs.

SDR with DJ Console

PowerSDR can be operated by a DJ Control

Most of the control elements of PowerSDR like command buttons or sliders can be mapped to knobs and buttons on the DJ Control by the user. Of course I use the big knobs for VFO A and B. The one in the upper left is used for the RIT. The sliders in the center are mapped to control the gain of the headphone and the speaker. MOX, TUNE, CW, SSB, VFO switching and others have been mapped to real buttons.

My FLEX-1500 is mainly used to operate transverters for 1296 and 2320 MHz. The Interface works well on all microwave configurations up to PowerSDRs limit of 99.0 GHz.

Visit DH1TWs website for more information.

The dish is up and running!

May 1st, 2012

After mounting the dish last evening, I was very impatient to see how it works. So I installed the controls for the rotator, fixed some meters of ECOFLEX 15 cable in the morning and started checking the beacons on 23 and 13 cm. It was no surprise but very satisfying that all of them were much stronger compared to the old 1.2 m dish. In the afternoon I had the initial QSO with the new antenna on 23 cm with Giorgio, IK3GHY in JN65DM. As I now know, I only had 5 W but Giorgio heard me with 539 anyway. My report for him was 559 and at the end of the QSO I could copy him in SSB too. Later I had a sked with 9A1Z in JN86DL. The signals weren’t strong enough to complete a QSO but we were able to detect them in the noise. So we will have another attempt when the preamp will be installed and my linear is finished.