AA8IA Amateur Radio


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For some reason I’ve actually started to seek out DX. I’m not sure why. It must have something to do with the FT-950. I find it so much more pleasurable to listen to CW on the FT-950 and find it so much easier to establish an SSB contact on the FT-950. Purchasing this radio has opened up a whole new world for me.

I find myself reading more about greylines and being more interested in propogation in general. I have been turning on the radio and tuning around in the evenings about an hour before sunset to an hour after sunset and then tuning around again, if I’m awake, during EU sunrise.

I also check DXSummit and ReverseBeacon.Net to see what DX is out there. Oftentimes you’ll see DX listed on one that isn’t on the other. And, just because it isn’t spotted on the packet cluster doesn’t mean it isn’t there. Many times I’ve just tuned around and heard DX and spotted it for others.

Some recent catches that are significant for me are:

9X0TL – Rwanda
5N50K – Nigeria
JW/OZ1AA – Svalbard

I’m sure that back in the 90s sometime I made contacts with Africa, but I have no logs or QSL confirmations to back that up. And since I’ve been back in the hobby I hadn’t been hearing anything from Africa. I figured I just don’t have much of a chance. As it turns out, it’s doable even on my mediocre station. You just have to pay attention for when the stations are active and try to listen for them. You’ve got to know what times of the day or night you are most likely to hear Africa, what band they would be on, etc.

Svalbard is just cool… it isn’t in Africa, but check it out on Google Maps.

I’m amazed at some of the operators that end up responding to my call. I may be hearing them S0 [under the noise] but if i hear them I try to reach them. And since I’m using a simple low wire, I know I’m not putting out a big signal. So obviously the DX is skilled at picking stations out of the mud [and the pileup]. There is no reason for me to expect that my signal is going to make it when 30 stations from various parts of the world with a kilowatt and multielement yagis are part of the pileup. But sure enough, even I can often get through with perseverence and an idea of how to garner the attention of the DX when other stronger stations are calling them.

Written by Mike

July 28th, 2010 at 1:04 pm

Posted in DX

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