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The Magic of Six

from Greg Danes, KJ4DGE on December 12, 2016
View comments about this article!

The Magic of Six

The 6 meter band is one of the few Ham radio bands that is more maligned by those that have never worked it than any other. Unlike 440 that has Internet linking stations and local nets. Six meters is an enigma. Most modern transceivers cover this band as a “extra.” You will see ads stating "160 through 10, plus 6 meters."

My first do it all radio was a Yaesu FT-817. I bought it as a tech because I knew someday I would upgrade to work those HF bands. Then sitting one day on the ninth floor of a hi-rise apartment with a B&W balcony antenna (40-6) with a whip and base loaded coil, I heard a ton of signals on 50.125 MHz The pileup was coming from those wanting to work a “Big Gun” W5CIA in Covington, LA.

I waited for a lull and sent out my call and bingo! He came back to me with a 59! Now considering I was only running 5 watts I was amazed and thrilled. The hook was set.

Part of the issues seen with 6 meters is it’s not really a VHF band and is a little too high up the scale to be HF, yet it has characteristics of both. Locally it can cover on a good day out to 100 miles, but during a Sporadic E opening 1000’s of miles, and that’s where patience is a virtue.

Many will say “I have called CQ on six and get no reply”. That may be the case but also how many times have you done that on a local repeater with the same results? Patience and a few tricks can help. First there are beacon stations on six that are on 24/7/365. These are between 50.060 and 50.080 with others around there. These are good indicators of how well the band is behaving.

Another factor is locally you may have someone listening on the calling frequency 50.125. Many local repeater clubs in bigger cities have a six meter repeater on FM in the 53 MHz range as well.

Antennas for this band are easy to make with a dipole being a little more than 9 feet in length. Vertical ham sticks work well too. I worked a Kentucky station on FM using a vertical ham stick and he was S9 + 10 over!

His signal during a band opening was like he was sitting in the room next to me. Along with voice and beacons six offers data and other modes just like the higher VHF bands. Here is the layout for the band.


Frequencies

Segment/Net name

Mode

Comments

Website

50-50.1

CW

CW





50.01-50.3

SSB

SSB

Europe



50.058

FISTS

CW



http://www.fists.org

50.06-50.08

Beacons

CW





50.1-50.125

DX Window

Other

Mixed CW/SSB



50.1-50.3

SSB

SSB





50.11

DX Window

Other

DX Calling Frequency. CW/SSB. Once
you establish a QSO, please move off this frequency.



50.125

SSB

SSB

Domestic calling frequency. You CQ
there for US/US QSO's - once established you move up the band to continue.



50.155

Ragchew

SSB





50.16

Radio
Scout Frequency

SSB



http://home.tiscali.nl/worldscout/Jota/frequencies.htm

50.16

Radio
Scout Frequency

CW



http://home.tiscali.nl/worldscout/Jota/frequencies.htm

50.1625

HFPACK

SSB

USB - Portable Calling Frequency -
Mobile- Portable - Base - Marine - Aero - HFpack

http://hfpack.com

50.1625

ALE

Other

ALE Voice, Data. Amateur Radio ALE
is USB standard Automatic Link Establishment 2.2kHz Bandwidth



50.2

6M SSB Net

SSB

Tuesday 8 PM Central time. KQ0J
net control.



50.215-50.25

JT6M

Digital

EUROPE JT6m (Center 50.230)



50.25

JT6M

Digital

Calling Frequency for JT6M (Weak
band enhancements)

http://www.qsl.net/digitalonsix/

50.25

AM

AM

AM - Northern Colorado

http://www.amwindow.org/freq.htm

50.255-50.285

Digital

Digital

FSK441 & JT6M meteor scatter

http://www.qsl.net/digitalonsix/

50.26

FSK441A

Digital

Calling Frequency for FSK441A
(Meteor Scatter Contacts Only)

http://www.qsl.net/digitalonsix/

50.275

YSSN NET

SSB

YSSB net at .275 for 20 yeas and
dates to the mid 60s

http://yankee6meterssbnet.blogspot.com/

50.276

JT65-A

Digital

Newly developed JT65A is finding a
home here



50.276

JT65

Digital

Weak Signal Users



50.276

JT65a

Digital

calling frequency



50.29

Digital

Digital

Calling Frequency for PSK31 and
Hell modes

http://www.qsl.net/digitalonsix/

50.29

MFSK16

Digital



http://kf4houtn.tripod.com/snddigi.htm

50.29

BPSK31

Digital

Been the defacto frequency for
years



50.291

Propagation
tracking

Digital

PropNET is an ad-hoc 2-way
RF-based digital communication network whose activity is reported on the
Internet for the purpose of propagation tracking.

http://www.propnet.org

50.292-50.2925

Olivia

Digital

OLIVIA CALLING FREQUENCY -
Dial_Frequency=50291.5kHzUSB - Audio_Center_Frequency_750Hz -
Olivia_Format=500/16 [Region 2]

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/oliviadata/

50.3

Digital

Digital

Operating Frequency for RTTY and
MFSK

http://www.qsl.net/digitalonsix/

50.3

rtty

Other

Digital On Six (DOS)

http://www.ykc.com/wa5ufh/DOS/index.html

50.4

6M AM
calling

AM

Mainly Saturday night 6M AM NY /
PA round table talks. Anyone with 6M AM anywhere can join in.



50.62

Packet

Digital

Digital (packet) calling



50.62

Packet

Digital

1200baud

http://aprs.org/6m-aprs.html

50.8-51

Remote
control

Digital

20-kHz channels



51

Military
backpack radio

FM

Equipment usually low power (<
5W and inefficient antennas) and sporadic in time and geography (Hamfests,
milrad exhibits, etc.)



51-51.1

DX Window

CW

Pacific DX window



51.12-51.18

Repeater
inputs

Digital

Digital repeaters



51.12-51.48

Repeater
inputs

AM

19 channels



51.62-51.68

Repeater
outputs

Digital

Digital repeaters



51.62-51.98

Repeater
outputs

AM

19 channels



52-52.48

Repeater
inputs

AM





52.02

FM Simplex

FM





52.04

FM Simplex

FM





52.5-52.98

Repeater
outputs

AM





52.525

FM Simplex

FM

Primary FM Simplex



52.54

FM Simplex

FM

Secondary FM Simplex



53-53.48

Repeater
inputs

AM





53.15

Emergency

FM

WICEN - Emergency communications
support & training in Australia (VK)

http://www.wicen.org.au/

53.5

Remote
control

Digital





53.5-53.98

Repeater
outputs

AM





53.6

Remote
control

Digital





53.7

Remote
control

Digital





53.8

Remote
control

Digital





53.9

FM Simplex

FM




There are various groups that have 6 meter nets on a regular basis. Many hams also use the various allotted remote control frequencies for use with model airplanes and remote controlled cars but this has seen many going to higher frequencies of late. As said before a dedicated radio can be used and MFJ still makes a 6 meter only QRP radio for SSB.

There are also great older rigs by Yaesu and ICOM and Ranger that do 6. But if you have a modern HF radio it is very likely it also comes with 6.

An antenna being so much shorter and easy to build all that is really needed is the area to install one. Like I said before B&W antennas had a 40-6 base loaded vertical antenna that clamped on a balcony railing for antenna restricted folks. It was very stealthy. This antenna is now sold by MFJ in their product line.

Below is the 40 through 2 meter “balcony antenna by MFJ.

As bad as all the HF bands have been this summer and waning interest on 2 meters perhaps a few Hams might want to consider starting a local 6 meter net just for the fun of trying a band perhaps you have never been on before.

Best 73 from KJ4DGE

Member Comments:
This article has expired. No more comments may be added.
 
The Magic of Six  
by KF4HR on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Very good point about using the Calling Frequency only to make an initial contact, then QSY. It's poor practice to tie up the Calling Frequencies.
 
The Magic of Six  
by K0CBA on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
No one seems interested in having local QSOs any more so unless the band is open its nothing but crickets.

When the band opens, which is pretty rare no days, its "gimme you grid square and go away".

How's that for exciting!?
 
The Magic of Six  
by NT9M on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
6 meters has always been my favorite band. Got a TS-600 one Christmas and worked from Indiana to Texas on 10 watts that day. Openings are possible this time of year.

There are nets around, but you need to ask around. In Fort Wayne, IN there is a SSB net on Tuesday's at 8 p-m and an AM net on Thursdays at 8 p-m. Both nets are on 50.580.

 
The Magic of Six  
by WD0M on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Definitely magic - one day, when I was in Alaska (ex-WL7M), I decided to call CQ on a seemingly dead band. To my great surprise, I got a call from VP6, Pitcairn. A short 60 second QSO, and the band faded. Always worth a try!
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by W4KVW on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Been on 6 meters since 1994.It is my favorite band but these days it's RARE that it's Open.The silence is noticeable & if you have a quiet rig like I do you may think the antenna is not even connected.I mostly listen even during band openings these days while I search for a new grid square or any station in Alaska for #50 of my WAS on the Magic Band which so far has avoided me all of these years.Many say there is No Magic but that's an opinion & we all have at least one of them.When I started in 1994 on 6 & 2 meter SSB I would fill up several pages in my logbook because there were no other active stations in my grid EM80 so I was kind of like a Rare DX Station but that status is no more due to the number of modern rigs with 6 meters & the number of active stations that now have 6 meter antennas& they actually use the band.I don't think we will ever get band conditions like we have had in years past in my lifetime but even so I will do as I do now & listen to 6 meters & 2 meter SSB every day when I'm in my Ham Shack/Man Cave & listen for a new one.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by ONAIR on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I've had lots of fun with the little RCI-5054! It can get you on 6 for very little $.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by K2LGO on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I second K0CBA-s comment...that most the time its just monitoring dead air...Now if you have a extra rcvr that you can leave on a 6 meter freq, well then there you go....if that's your bag...But after years of monitoring 6 meters, I often leave my 6 meter monitor rcvr off, as I guess the MAGIC of 6 has just not rubbed off on me...and even when it does open, those wham bam, thank you mamm type qso_s just don't do it for me..
 
The Magic of Six  
by K0RGR on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Try JT65 on 6! You can call CQ in that mode while you do other things on your computer. When you get an answer, you will see it.

I often call CQ on both the 6 and 10 meter bands, at times when the band appears dead - no beacons at all. And I get some unexpected answers. The JT modes are perfect for sporadic propagation like 6 meters has.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by AA4PB on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I got my start on 6M. Back in the late 1950's there was lots of local 6M AM activity in the Detroit area. The band was often open all over the country when I got home from school in the afternoon. There were lots of local contacts available when people got home from work in the evening. In those days many people used home brew transmitters and receiving converters so there were always a lot of technical discussions going on. I made local contacts and a little DX using a folded dipole strung across the ceiling in my first floor bed room. Things improved a good deal after I saved enough money to put up a 5 el Yagi on the garage roof.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by ONAIR on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Just get on 6 (or 10) meters and start calling CQ in earnest! Many hams monitor their waterfalls, and when your signal has alerted them to your presence, they very often will respond!!
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by KB1GMX on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
FYI the YSSB net formerly on .275 has moved down
to .270 to .272 due to interference from JT65.


Allison
 
The Magic of Six  
by W3ATV on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Six is magical! My new Icom IC-7300 has six meters so I figured I would give it a try. Whipped up a quick dipole and installed it at 30 feet. I started playing on 6M during the June VHF contest. Not much was going on for most of the weekend then the magic happened. There was an E-skip opening the last few hours of the contest and I worked a bunch of stations. For a little while 6 sounded like 20 meters. Over the next 6 weeks I played on 6 everyday enjoying the many summertime Es openings. During that 6 week period I managed to work VUCC with a simple dipole and 100 watts. I just assembled a 5 element Yagi- Look out 6 meters!!!!
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by K6AER on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Part of the problem with six besides it being dead most of the time is when it finally does open you really need a beam to make the difference is signal quality. now the good news is you can make a 4 element beam for six for under 5 dollars with some wood and wire.

In Colorado I had 10 elements at 105 feet and would hear the East coast almost every day. Running 1500 watts I could put a good signal out but when the band started to fade the 10 watt stations would disappear. Those running power would last up to an hour or two after the band started to shut down. This was at the bottom of the last sun spot cycle.
 
The Magic of Six  
by K5UJ on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
It really is magic. Signals suddenly pop in your receiver then vanish just as suddenly. Sort of like Samantha on Bewitched or Jeannie blinking her eyes--poof she's gone.

I like Jeannie but with radio I prefer less magic.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by N4KZ on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Six meters is not everyone's cup of tea. If you expect 6 to be open most days and nights, you'll be disappointed. But if you're a student of propagation and enjoy band openings as an interesting event, you'll like the sporadic nature of the band. I've worked the band a bunch for the past 15 years and have worked all 50 states, all continents and 73 countries, all with 100 watts and a 5-element yagi. Compared to the big guns, my set-up is modest but still yields many fascinating QSOs, including Japan, Guam, Eastern Europe, all of South America and the Caribbean. My goal is 6m DXCC.
 
The Magic of Six  
by AH7I on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I am new to 6 and listen for beacons to learn if the band is open.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by N6ORB on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
A good way to check for activity on six without bothering to turn on the radio is to check the DX Maps website:

http://www.dxmaps.com/spots/map.php?Lan=E&Frec=50&ML=M&Map=NA&DXC=N&HF=N&GL=N

When hf DX starts fading in the late spring, six meter openings are starting to become common. By the middle of August, sporadic E openings are mostly over for the season, just as DX signals on hf get better.

Dave, N6ORB
 
The Magic of Six  
by AA7LX on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Amazing! Very nice Article and Frequency Chart! Well written and researched! Thank You. I remember doing the calculations and cutting 450ohm Ladder Line with 8X coax lead-in and making a Dipole for 6m spread across my balcony. It worked! I was amazed I hit the only 6-meter Repeater in the area. Have made local contacts with mobile stations but no DX contacts yet! Have just acquired a HO Loop from M2 Antenna Systems for 6m! Otherwise it's the Dipole or the Quad(with a tuner)! I hope I have given encouragement to other Hams to get set-up for 6m!
'73 George, AA7LX
 
The Magic of Six  
by WA8HHH on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Six Meters has always been Magic. Been there since 1963 when I started with a Lafayette HE45b and 3 ele homebrew beam sometimes courteously rotated for me by WA8CAL (now VY1JA) standing on the garage roof with the antenna in his hands. Amazing what could be done with a watt or two and a piece of wet string for an antenna on a June afternoon. When I went to SSB in the 70's, the band just rocked all summer long. I got the first SMIRK number issued in the 8th call area, #38!

During that time, the band was wide open to experimentation. Today, not so much, I think. Anybody doing FAX these days? But the equipment is more sophisticated and there are modes of operation never even dreamed of built right into the radios and their controlling computers now and some semblance of order and planning had to be put into place. I suppose this is a good thing but the freedom that was so attractive about Six Meters is pretty much gone. It has been replaced by the Radio Police who take pride in telling you, "Hey, you can't do that!"
 
The Magic of Six  
by WB8VLC on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
wrong about 50.3MHz BEING DIGITAL,

50.3 is more FM and it has been this way for the past 20 years that I remember.

50.3 is the defacto low band end FM DX FREQUENCY for users who want a bit of a change from cw/ssb but still desire to work some 6 METER DX with their hi gain/low band end antennas that do not operate above 51 MHz.

I have all 50 US states, VE1 TO VE8, VO1 in Canada, XE MEXICO, some south pacific along with numerous JA's on 50.3 FM over the past 20 years.
 
The Magic of Six  
by AK4YH on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I also agree with K0CBA. Nobody on 6m wants to chat. I find collecting grid numbers and QSOs a bit weird myself, kind of like plane spotting... Weird. But I don't judge it, to each his own. I wish however that more conversations were actually held on 6m, and many other bands for that matter. I used to own an MFJ-9406, rarely heard anyone and it always was short 59-73 contacts. Sure you get a 59, it's always 59! Makes you wonder why anyone says it, even when you have to repeat your call four times...

Now, I like 6m in principle. It should be used more for local contacts. I will probably buy an RT-351 sometime soon, but I doubt I'll hear anyone around here on 6m FM. I'll probably need to buy a second one to do some range testing.

It's not the band I blame. I don't really want to be on 6m because nobody is going to talk to me there.

Gil.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by WA8UEG on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I am fortunate, I live on top of a mountain with line of sight to the entire east coast as well as Europe and run a 8 element wide spaced beam on a 24' boom at 65'. I never have a problem making contacts on 6 and it is my favorite band. If the band is open a lot of contacts are just grid square exchanges but I have great rag chews as well. I also do a lot of CW on 6 and I really enjoy the CW contacts. I have listened to 6 for hours while in the shack and not heard a peep but give my call on .125 or call CQ on 50.090 CW and have 2 or 3 replies on the first call.

To be serious on the band I believe you need at minimum of 4 elements at 40' and 100 or more watts. JT65 makes making contacts with modest stations much easier, I occasionally use it but I'm just not a digital guy.

The antenna and power requirement use to be less to be competitive during the openings but with all the new rigs incorporating 6 with 1 or 200 watts available it makes it more difficult.

I was off 6 for decades and when I moved here I knew it was time to get back on. I put up a dipole about 70' running a IC551D with a 150 watt amp and it was frustrating, I replaced the dipole with a 4 element homebrew quad at 30' and 6 suddenly became a magical band. When I replaced the quad with the current antenna setup it became an awesome band.
 
The Magic of Six  
by KC2QYM on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I hail the commitment of many who laud six meters. It appears to be a band for patience and technical prowess in order to sustain an interesting challenge. Personally, I am not interested in magic (which occurs too infrequently to muster the energy of pursuit on my part). I enjoy throwing up a wire and working whoever comes back to me on the lower bands; much better chances of catching a fish. Yes the antennas are shorter on six so it may be easier to get on the air...but if six meter propagation is nowhere (and that's most of the time) I would personally never bother at all. Some may say that I am missing the excitement; believe me, I'm not missing anything except wasted time and money in pursuing a mediocre band. Sorry if some of you don't agree. I have a number of ham friends who have banged their heads against the wall for years trying to derive some pleasure out of six meters. Guess what? Six meters broke them.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by N8FVJ on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I always like 6 meters. I was in Manhattan, NY last seven years, thus did not have a ham station there. Moved back to MI and use a TS-590SG for six meters. I set up a loop, but with working a lot did not find an opening this summer.

I will set up a four element beam this winter.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by K8QV on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I dabbled in Six Meters for a bit. I was able to work stateside and Europe. It was nice, but I grew tired of the "what's your grid square?" frenzy and I didn't have the time to wait around for one of those rare openings when several other bands were always functioning anyway. I don't know what the attraction of Six Meters is, but it's certainly there for some folks. To each his own.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by KB2FCV on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
6 is a lot of fun. I discovered it several years ago when all the HF stations were taken at the radio club field day. I sat down, called CQ and a station in the midwest came back! I spent the next hour working a nice opening. After that.. I had to upgrade my HF radio with something that covered 6!

I started out with a 6m dipole in the attic at my old apartment. I worked stateside openings and even worked into Europe once on that! I made a handful of meteor scatter QSO's as well.

Currently, I have a small m2 3el yagi on the chimney with a TV rotor. I've worked the west coast, the Caribbean, South America as well as Europe. Spring / early summer seems to have more openings but other seasons have come with surprises. Some may not have the patience for it or don't see the excitement.. which I can understand. To each their own.
 
The Magic of Six  
by N4UE on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Greg, thanks for the great article! Six Meters is not the band for everyone. To each his own. It is, and always has been, my favorite. I operate 160M through 70 CM.
I started on 6 AM back in the early 70s. Living in a apartment, I discovered 'hilltopping' on the mountaintops in New England. Used a Lafayette HA-460 that ran about 7W output. Using portable 3 el beams, one call after another, all day. This was before Grids.
Met Wayne Green on a mountain in NH. Interesting chap. Had I listened to his advice, I would be a multi-millionaire today!!!
Just finished a legal limit 50 MHz amp. Using an M2 6M7JHV at 105' fed with 7/8" hardline. I have other towers, amps and beams. First radio I turn on now, is my Icom 7300. A bandscope/waterfall is a big help. I also subscribe to DX Maps. Fantastic tool.
I was a Grid chaser in years past, but enjoy a nice long QSO these days.....

Have fun doing whatever you enjoy.

ron
N4UE
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by W0AEW on December 14, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Maybe it should be renamed: "To each his own" band.
 
The Magic of Six  
by K5CQB on December 14, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
My cw elmer and I use it for code practice. Crystal clear band with reliable daily communication. I also subscribe to the band alerts and there seems to be some sort of opening daily.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by K1DA on December 14, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I question the wisdom of chopping a usually dead band up into little "special interest don't go there" bits.
Up here, 50.2 is a calling frequency and even in band openings is seldom hogged.
 
Check 6 meters for sporadic E-skip in December  
by W4KYR on December 14, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
While the primary peak of the E-skip season is usually May through August. There is also small peak right now in December running until early January.

You can check hourly and daily for the MUF, just go to DXMaps.com and put in the the frequency, mode and your location parameters. If you want, you can set it up for text notifications as well.

So if you have 6 meter capability start checking now.
 
RE: Check 6 meters for sporadic E-skip in December  
by WA8UEG on December 14, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
It's been open at one time or another every day this week here in far eastern PA.
 
The Magic of Six  
by KC1GCG on December 14, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Hi Greg thanks for the helpful and informative article. New to the hobby this past August and have been on 10 through 80 m .....not so much 10 :) with an old Yaesu 101 Zd that I bought and am very happy with but it's time to spread my wings. Beginning to do some research and look for a new rig as I'm going to have, Shall we say , an improvement in my financial situation beginning of next year! I definitely at least wanted to get a new HF +6 rig or perhaps one of those shack in a box radios so that I can spread my wings all over and experience the entire hobby. Going to post some questions about that in the Elmer forum later tonight if anyone wants to swing by. Guess I am a little disappointed in the detailed and organized band plan. I'm not too much of a rules guy when it comes to my hobbies . Don't get me wrong. I'm not one of those guys on 7200:) I follow the rules out of respect for everybody but I guess you Know what I mean:) Reminds me of one of my favorite all-time jokes from the American Pie movie.... "and one time in band camp .........." :)I guess it's one thing I like about HF is that you find a clear frequency, shout CQ and you never know what's gonna happen. I guess I like to equate it to fishing, particularly deep-sea fishing where you just throw a clam down 200 300 feet and you never know what's going to come up ...part of the fun is just the mystery of it all. Was doing that the other day on 20 m calling CQ and making a bunch a great QSO's to folks down Florida Louisiana all of that part of the country (I'm in NH) when all of a sudden I got a reply from somebody in Alaska so bingo 48 states now! Totally unexpected and that was fun. So I guess I'll have to look at 6 m with its organization as kind of like going out specifically for striped bass for instance:). Thanks for enlightening me to that whole situation. Very helpful! May your noise levels be low and the bands wide-open. John k1jrf


 
The Magic of Six  
by WA4UF on December 16, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
"I waited for a lull and sent out my call and bingo! He came back to me with a 59! Now considering I was only running 5 watts I was amazed and thrilled. The hook was set."

EXACTLY! When I first got licensed I had one of those little MFJ rigs and a copper pipe j-pole, and every afternoon when I got home I was making contacts all over the northeast and into Canada from my FL QTH. Been hooked on 6 ever since.

For those times when the band isn't open, something with a bit more gain than a dipole or simple vertical is very nice to have, and even fairly high-gain Yagis aren't *that* big - 6 el on a 14' boom is not at all unreasonable.

Just remember to toss your call out there every so often. Too many people listening and no one talking and what openings there are might go unnoticed! :D
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by WA4UF on December 16, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Oh, and by the by, on your chart, all those repeater inputs and outputs you listed as AM? They're actually FM. Might want to fix that. :)
 
The Magic of Six  
by W4AMP on December 20, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Good chart, but all the repeaters now are FM, not AM. Hope to work you on six.
 
The Magic of Six  
by KB7WOX on January 1, 2017 Mail this to a friend!
The Magic of Six disappears once the cable TV audio interference appears below 50.1 MHz.
 
RE: The Magic of Six  
by K0OD on January 12, 2017 Mail this to a friend!
I briefly played on six a few years ago. As a newbie to the band I wanted to learn more about the stations and antennas others used. But it was bizarrely almost impossible to engage discussion along that line. K0CBA is correct, grid numbers are all most want to exchange.

I'm in EM48 Saint Louis, 2.4 million people, the most populous grid in the Zero district. No one needs it, but most hams will DEMAND the grid, even if they've confirmed it 100 times.

After a while I made a point of never giving out the stupid grid square.
 
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