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Author Topic: 20 Second burst of arcing sound, regular interval on lowbands  (Read 2848 times)
N1HOQ
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Posts: 5




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« on: January 29, 2011, 07:50:19 PM »

I'm getting a burst of 20 second line noise like sound on all HF bands, most pronounced on the low bands and on the Inverted V antenna, but also heard through 10m on a beam. It starts at about S7 and builds quickly to S15, maintains for roughly 20 seconds then quickly breaks up and stops. Forty seconds later it repeats, regularly. I haven't done the in-house test yet, but will soon. Any similar experiences?

Many thanks

Shawn, N1HOQ.
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K1CJS
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Posts: 5811




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« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2011, 08:36:08 AM »

If the timing is exactly the way you say--precisely forty seconds of quiet, then a gradual build up of 20 seconds of noise followed by quiet once again, I would look for something to do with a timing unit.  Do you have a solid state timer--say one to turn your lights on in the evening?  How about a lawn sprinkler control?  Even the clock unit on a microwave oven may be suspected.

The tried and true method of RFI hunting is of benefit here.  Power your radio with a battery and switch off your main breaker.  Is the noise gone?  If not, it may not be in your house.  If it is, switch off all the breakers in the panel and put the main back on.  The switch the breakers on one at a time until you find the one that, when turned on, causes the noise.  Then turn off everything but that one breaker and find where that circuit feeds--and more than likely you'll find your problem.

Good luck and 73! 
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W9CN
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Posts: 43




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« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2011, 02:16:05 PM »

And remember to kill anything that's on a UPS (including the UPS) or turning off the AC won't really turn everything off...

Mike Pappas
W9CN
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N4VNV
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« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2011, 06:20:26 AM »

I had a noise similar to what you describe from a very old radio scanner/receiver when it was in the scanning mode.
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NX8J
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Posts: 8




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« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2011, 08:40:29 AM »

The increased prevalence of noisy switching-type power supplies in consumer devices is most annoying. Your case sounds to me like a battery charger. Could be a cellphone charger or similar. As another suggested, you need to eliminate suspects in your house first, before contacting the power company or asking neighbors what they might have done recently.

Fortunately, most of these unintentional radiators don't pollute very far. A good antenna high in the sky away from the shack, fed with balanced line can help. The absolute worst antenna I ever used during my SWL days was a wire in the attic. Every little household emitter was audible on the receiver.

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N3PM
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Posts: 31




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« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2011, 02:12:01 PM »

I tracked a similiar noise to a faulty security light. The light would try to come on, and stop. I turned it over to the power company and had it fixed in a day.
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N1HOQ
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« Reply #6 on: February 22, 2011, 03:42:27 PM »

I Have found the problem ! My wife has from time to time mentioned the street light that keeps turning on and off, and low and behold, it turns on and off at those intervals. I visually reconciled it with the noise. Calling the town/ power company tomorrow. Its one of those orange ignition fired street lamps. Thanks for all the tips.

Shawn , N1HOQ.
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WX7G
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« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2011, 03:54:41 PM »

It's facinating to see folks troubleshoot at a distance with insufficent data. AD1OS got it right.
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W5DPK
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Posts: 12




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« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2011, 05:57:58 PM »

Also look for a battery charger .  My 18 volt drill motor battery charger  makes more RF noise than a old spark gap transmitter.   Cheesy Cheesy Its in the shop 35 feet from the antenna but it is S9 up to 10 meters

Dennis n5dpk
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