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Author Topic: Dumb Question .. Maybe?  (Read 1006 times)
VE6CPP
Member

Posts: 56




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« on: September 19, 2007, 08:06:55 PM »

I have tried working AO-51 and V0-52.. I can hear my 'echo.. and have gotten Reports back that they can 'Hear my Uplink Signal'.. using a Discone on both Up/Down. Now.. I have 14el on 2M and 16el on 70cm both Horizontally Polarized at 25 and 35'... I cant hear the 'Birds any better.. and I cannot hear my 'Echo coming back!  Was using a Vertical any better than what I have now? Is my 'Capture Area' now just a 16" Dipole on 70cm.. and the 15' Boom means nothing? Is 'Circular the Way to Go'..A 'Larger Vertical maybe..'  Help me Guys!!
Jerry VE6CPP VE6Jee/p
 
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W7AIT
Member

Posts: 491




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« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2007, 01:58:18 PM »


Consider these requirements:

1.   Do NOT TRANSMIT UNLESS YOU CAN HEAR YOUR OWN SIGNAL OR HEAR OTHERS.  Otherwise you will be jamming the rest of us!
2.   Make your RECEIVE work BEFORE transmitting.
3.   Using the right kind of antenna makes a huge difference.  A discone Will NOT work.  A fixed beam horizontal to the earth will not work.  Antenna patterns and pattern shapes is extremely critical and you must keep the antenna pattern aimed at the satellite.  Mine is a simple ARROW (3 el on 2, 7 el on 435) on a mast tilted 20 degrees elevation AND ARR mast mounted preamps AND low loss coax AND it all meets or exceed the system up link and downlink budget margins with S5 to S7 margins OR MORE.  I reliably work AO7, AO51, VO52, SO50 and ISS every day.
4.   Pointing at the satellite make a huge difference.  The fact that you hear anything at all with the discone & horizontal beam is seer luck, the satellite footprint just catches a slight corner of the discone pattern.  Point!
5.   Knowing WHEN AND WHERE satellite is REQUIRED!  Use SATPC32 software for this and doppler control.
6.   Doppler control REQUIRED!  Trying to tune 3 KHZ/ minute rates and a 20 KHZ change is impossible without SATPC32.
7.   DON’T USE HAM RADIO DELUXE.  IT DOESN’T WORK!  Especially for SSB birds.
8.   Calculating your system up link and down link path margins and adjusting your equipment gains and losses to get satisfactory S-meter signal margins (make it so you can be heard and can hear) ABSOLUTELY REQUIRED!
9.   Eggbeaters - NOT a good antenna.  No gain- you need 6 to 10 db gain antennas at least and POINT.  Need a footprint and tight main lobes eggbeaters don't. Eggbeaters with preamps won't do it either.  Eggbeaters too expensive too.  A 4 or 7 ele 2 meter, 440 coat hanger beam works and cheap!
10.   I attached my spreadsheet to this email (see me on this).  You can put in your own numbers and see what you "have" and then do it again with what you "need to make it work".
11.   Yep radio to computer to do doppler a must, too much knob twisting manually.  A few guys do it but they are always off frequency and distracted tuning.  Minimum is doppler, direction data (az and el).  Auto rotor control optional.
12.   If you get into the bird then disappears likely freq WAY off toward the end of the band.  You are dealing with as much as 20 khz changes.  Sliding?  I think you are trying to hear your DL and I do that by sending CW and listening and tuning slightly a few hundred hz at most to tune in, then the tracking is right on the rest of the pass.  Get SATPC32 and it will solve that problem.
13.   Low loss coax- you MUST use low loss coax.  9913 minimum.  LMR 600 better.  RG58 will NOT work.  RG8X will not work.  RG8 marginal.  All runs as short as possible. No extra.
14.   Hot Rod Arrow – AMSAT  Journal Jan/Feb 2007:  My antenna is FIXED at 20 degrees elevation and 90% of all ham satellite orbits don't go above 45 degrees, so there is really not much reason for an expensive az - el rotor.  You can get away without elevation if you follow my design carefully.  The  design takes into account the beamwidth angles, orbital mechanics, satellite foot prints, satellite antenna patterns, etc, so it works, and allows me to work most all satellites reliably and consistently every day. The cost is cheap if you don't add the receiver pre amps.  Those make a huge improvement on receive and make it armchair copy, but if you have a good transceiver and its sensitive enough*, you can do without, though received signals will be very weak on most passes.  After all, there are guys using nothing but a ARROW and a W32A or THF6 hand held to successfully work the satellites, though its not armchair copy.
15.   If you want the link budget path calculators to see what equipment and coaxes you need see me.
16.   I have more.  Enough for now………

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KB9CRY
Member

Posts: 4283


WWW

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« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2007, 06:16:46 PM »

Now.. I have 14el on 2M and 16el on 70cm both Horizontally Polarized at 25 and 35'... I cant hear the 'Birds any better.. and I cannot hear my 'Echo coming back!

You need to move those antennas in a Az and El mode.


Was using a Vertical any better than what I have now?


Probably since you obviously don't have an An/EL rotator.

Is my 'Capture Area' now just a 16" Dipole on 70cm.. and the 15' Boom means nothing?

Yes

Is 'Circular the Way to Go'..A 'Larger Vertical maybe..' Help me Guys!!


Yes but the Sats are 3 dimensional. So you NEED to move your antennas in both a horizontal (AZ) and vertical (EL) direction at the same time.

Understood?
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VE6CPP
Member

Posts: 56




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« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2007, 07:59:04 PM »

1. Do NOT TRANSMIT UNLESS YOU CAN HEAR YOUR OWN SIGNAL OR HEAR OTHERS. Otherwise you will be jamming the rest of us!
"I have heard my Downlink on AO-51 and VO-52"and many others calling CQ. (how do I 'Not Transmit' if I want to Hear my Downlink?)

2. Make your RECEIVE work BEFORE transmitting.
This is what I have been working on..
 
3. Using the right kind of antenna makes a huge difference. A discone Will NOT work. A fixed beam horizontal to the earth will not work. Antenna patterns and pattern shapes is extremely critical and you must keep the antenna pattern aimed at the satellite. Mine is a simple ARROW (3 el on 2, 7 el on 435) on a mast tilted 20 degrees elevation AND ARR mast mounted preamps AND low loss coax AND it all meets or exceed the system up link and downlink budget margins with S5 to S7 margins OR MORE. I reliably work AO7, AO51, VO52, SO50 and ISS every day.
I used a Cushcraft A270-10S with minimal success on an AZ/El Rotor... and the end result was no better than with the discone!
 
4. Pointing at the satellite make a huge difference. The fact that you hear anything at all with the discone & horizontal beam is seer luck, the satellite footprint just catches a slight corner of the discone pattern. Point!
'Pointing'and using a TS-711S and an 811S.. excellent receivers!

5. Knowing WHEN AND WHERE satellite is REQUIRED! Use SATPC32 software for this and doppler control.
I use SATPC32 and it works Very Well'

6. Doppler control REQUIRED! Trying to tune 3 KHZ/ minute rates and a 20 KHZ change is impossible without SATPC32.
I follow the uplink/downlink freq. on SATPC and they seem to be very close!

7. DON’T USE HAM RADIO DELUXE. IT DOESN’T WORK! Especially for SSB birds.
8. Calculating your system up link and down link path margins and adjusting your equipment gains and losses to get satisfactory S-meter signal margins (make it so you can be heard and can hear) ABSOLUTELY REQUIRED!
9. Eggbeaters - NOT a good antenna. No gain- you need 6 to 10 db gain antennas at least and POINT. Need a footprint and tight main lobes eggbeaters don't. Eggbeaters with preamps won't do it either. Eggbeaters too expensive too. A 4 or 7 ele 2 meter, 440 coat hanger beam works and cheap!
Is the 16el 70cm Sat. Antenna worth the expense for the receive end?

10. I attached my spreadsheet to this email (see me on this). You can put in your own numbers and see what you "have" and then do it again with what you "need to make it work".
I will check my system out and see where I am at, Thank You..

11. Yep radio to computer to do doppler a must, too much knob twisting manually. A few guys do it but they are always off frequency and distracted tuning. Minimum is doppler, direction data (az and el). Auto rotor control optional.

12. If you get into the bird then disappears likely freq WAY off toward the end of the band. You are dealing with as much as 20 khz changes. Sliding? I think you are trying to hear your DL and I do that by sending CW and listening and tuning slightly a few hundred hz at most to tune in, then the tracking is right on the rest of the pass. Get SATPC32 and it will solve that problem.

13. Low loss coax- you MUST use low loss coax. 9913 minimum. LMR 600 better. RG58 will NOT work. RG8X will not work. RG8 marginal. All runs as short as possible. No extra.
The 2M and 70cm yagis are both fed with LMR-400(50' lengths)Perhaps I will go back and try 2 stacked(on the horizontal) A27010S's(I have another)and use them with the AZ/EL Rotor and see where that gets me.
 
14. Hot Rod Arrow – AMSAT Journal Jan/Feb 2007: My antenna is FIXED at 20 degrees elevation and 90% of all ham satellite orbits don't go above 45 degrees, so there is really not much reason for an expensive az - el rotor. You can get away without elevation if you follow my design carefully. The design takes into account the beamwidth angles, orbital mechanics, satellite foot prints, satellite antenna patterns, etc, so it works, and allows me to work most all satellites reliably and consistently every day. The cost is cheap if you don't add the receiver pre amps. Those make a huge improvement on receive and make it armchair copy, but if you have a good transceiver and its sensitive enough*, you can do without, though received signals will be very weak on most passes. After all, there are guys using nothing but a ARROW and a W32A or THF6 hand held to successfully work the satellites, though its not armchair copy.
15. If you want the link budget path calculators to see what equipment and coaxes you need see me.
16. I have more. Enough for now………
Thanks for the advice..(Ime taking it as you weren't giving the 'Newbie a Lecture..) Just Operating Principles!
73 and I look forward to any more suggestions, etc..
VE6CPP VE6Jee/p
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VE6CPP
Member

Posts: 56




Ignore
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2007, 08:05:14 PM »

Now.. I have 14el on 2M and 16el on 70cm both Horizontally Polarized at 25 and 35'... I cant hear the 'Birds any better.. and I cannot hear my 'Echo coming back!

You need to move those antennas in a Az and El mode.


Was using a Vertical any better than what I have now?


Probably since you obviously don't have an An/EL rotator.
Tried that.. and is was not much more succesful than with the Vertical!

Is my 'Capture Area' now just a 16" Dipole on 70cm.. and the 15' Boom means nothing?

Yes

Is 'Circular the Way to Go'..A 'Larger Vertical maybe..' Help me Guys!!


Yes but the Sats are 3 dimensional. So you NEED to move your antennas in both a horizontal (AZ) and vertical (EL) direction at the same time.

Understood?
My first attempt with the discone did work on both the uplink and downlink however minimal.. I will put up my two A27010S antennas on my AZ/EL Rotor and try it again..I use SATPC to follow the uplink/downlink freq.s and it seems to work very well.
If this antenna attempt is not to my satisfaction.. i will try a 16el Sat Yagi and see if that helps even more! Thanks for the input!
VE6CPP VE6Jee/p
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W7AIT
Member

Posts: 491




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« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2007, 07:57:37 PM »

sent email 9/21/7........
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VE6CPP
Member

Posts: 56




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« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2007, 10:21:54 PM »

I thought that call sounded familiar.. I heard you responding to my CQ one afternoon on SSB..and tried to get back to you.. and just a few minutes ago(0500Z 09/23/07) on V0-52 on CW calling CQ! (CW man for 25yrs here!)
So.. it is working.. just not up to what I am expecting! I will try the Phased A270-10S's on a AZ/EL Rotor.. and perhaps we can actually 'QSO on a Bird'.. rather than via this forum!
73 and look forward to a Rag-chew.. de
VE6CPP VE6Jee/p
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KE7NGM
Member

Posts: 6




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« Reply #7 on: February 19, 2008, 06:49:47 PM »

Don't let the "You must have" chorus keep you off the air for the next 10 years while you try to get the money for all the nice toys they claim you simply must have.
I get on the birds and make contacts on a regular basis with only the following:
A five watt IC-91AD HT into an Arrow II antenna that I point at the satellite BY Hand using info from the web site Heavens Above.
I may not have the biggest signal but it does work.
The need to maually point, change channels to compensate for doppler shift, and the fact that I'm operating QRP only makes things more of a challege.
It has forced me to get creative, and to hone my operator skills.
You can always add the fancy toys later.
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