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Author Topic: WSPR and QRP  (Read 3688 times)
WB0FDJ
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Posts: 144




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« on: January 08, 2012, 03:48:11 PM »

Lately I've developed some interest in WSPR. It partly stems from using JT65A in WSJT's excellent software package (which used to contain the WSPR, now it's freestanding) and partly because being a QRPer I'm alway wondering about what can be done with very little power and very little antenna.

So a few months ago I dusted off the trusty FT-817ND, an old Acer Netbook that runs Ubuntu and plugged it all into my MFJ mag loop. The loop sits indoors in a room, upstairs, next to my shack and the 817 now sits off to one side of the operating position doing it's thing while I listen on the big rig and read email. I'm amazed at how effective small amounts of power can be.

Taking into account that the loops lowest and least efficient frequency is 10 mHz I'm managing to get 30 meter spots to both coasts (and in between) at 500 milliwatts. I've been seeing an east coast station all afternoon running 100 milliwatts with SNRs of about -20. Thats not anything like a record but I have to shake my head.

So my question/comment is: are there other QRPers out there running WSPR? Is it helpful? To me it seems like something made for the QRP crowd to check antenna effectiveness, follow propagation, etc. But haven't seen much posting here.

One outcome of doing this: I put all my non-kit rigs on the air, at least for a bit, just to look for differences. My IC-703 with a TCXO showed drift on every spot, granted it was 1 Hz. My FT-817 without a TCXO has showed no drift at all. I would never have guessed this.

73s WB0FDJ Doc
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WM9I
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Posts: 8




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« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2012, 10:54:16 AM »

Quick answer, yes.  Check out the yahoo FT-817 group.
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AA5TB
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Posts: 81


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« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2012, 03:01:35 PM »

Yes, but I would avoid the 40 m frequency that puts your WSPR signal on 7040.11 kHz if you don't want to make QRPers angry.  And avoid unattended operation on bands where it is illegal in the U.S., like on 40 m.  A lot of WSPRers don't seem to realize this.  I personally prefer real two-way QSOs but I can understand the fascination with WSPR.  I know it's kind of cool to see who is hearing me on the Reverse Beacon Network when I call CQ on CW.

73,
Steve - AA5TB
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