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Author Topic: "DXCC Honor Roll: The Final Mile (How HFTA saved my sanity)"  (Read 1933 times)
KY6R
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« on: March 30, 2012, 06:23:55 AM »

I have posted this years 2012 Pacificon Antenna Forum presentation here for your review:

http://eastbayarc.org/pdf/final-mile.pdf

Please let me know what you think. I am going to modify it to include how I worked EP3PK, because that has become the most interesting "story" that combines science (antennas, propagation and take off angles / terrain) plus "tenacity" (aka mucho patience). Not to mention the friendship that developed with Pooyan through our propagation "tests". It truly has been the pinnacle of my "DX-ing Career".

Rich
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AD9DX
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« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2012, 06:32:16 PM »

I am not going to lie here.  A lot of the info was a bit over my head  Huh .  I am ok with that, but I really do appreciate the time you took to honestly critique the pros and shortcomings of your antenna farm and the local terrain.  I unfortunately have HOA issues at my current QTH (I was a homeowner prior to being a ham).  But the info sure does make me feel better about some of the demons I have had running through my head. Like the Palestine vs. Israel issue.  I hope as I strive to become more technically savvy and less of an appliance operator the time you put into your write up will only be more beneficial to me.  Thank you again. It was a very informative read.
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EX, KC9TRM, KB9IRZ
AA6YQ
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« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2012, 07:04:58 PM »

Nicely done, Rich!

    73,

         Dave, AA6YQ
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KY6R
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« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2012, 07:13:54 PM »

Thanks for the very nice feedback. When I give the presentation - I fill it with personal stories so that the "science" is as human and "pragmatic" as possible. So - that is missing when you just read a slide deck, and it will seem more overwhelming than when I present it.

The club that I belong to has 3 or 4 of us DX-ers - but the majority are more Emcomm and "casual" HF ops. So - my "battle test" is whether I can orient the presentation to all hams - not just DX-ers - and the first time I gave it - it went over very well for all.

Only one fellow (literally) fell asleep - but he sleeps in every meeting that we have - so I was not offended! I'm not kidding - he even snored. I was very impressed.

Rich
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AD9DX
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« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2012, 07:29:51 PM »

Thanks for the very nice feedback. When I give the presentation - I fill it with personal stories so that the "science" is as human and "pragmatic" as possible. So - that is missing when you just read a slide deck, and it will seem more overwhelming than when I present it.

The club that I belong to has 3 or 4 of us DX-ers - but the majority are more Emcomm and "casual" HF ops. So - my "battle test" is whether I can orient the presentation to all hams - not just DX-ers - and the first time I gave it - it went over very well for all.

Only one fellow (literally) fell asleep - but he sleeps in every meeting that we have - so I was not offended! I'm not kidding - he even snored. I was very impressed.

Rich

I would really like to see the presentation.  One of these time you give the presentation, it would be nice if someone would video tape it.  Thanks again for the primer,
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EX, KC9TRM, KB9IRZ
AA6YQ
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« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2012, 10:11:26 PM »


Only one fellow (literally) fell asleep - but he sleeps in every meeting that we have - so I was not offended! I'm not kidding - he even snored. I was very impressed.


I was giving a presentation to some software engineering managers at a potential customer when one of them fell asleep. Having never encountered this rather disconcerting reaction, I ignored him and pressed onward. Six months later, our sales team was struggling to close the deal when the manager who'd fallen asleep rose up to proclaim our technology to be the best available, and forcefully drove the purchase to completion. The sales team subsequently asserted that I was more effective when my audience was asleep than awake...

     73,

           Dave, AA6YQ
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KY6R
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« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2012, 03:48:58 AM »


Only one fellow (literally) fell asleep - but he sleeps in every meeting that we have - so I was not offended! I'm not kidding - he even snored. I was very impressed.


I was giving a presentation to some software engineering managers at a potential customer when one of them fell asleep. Having never encountered this rather disconcerting reaction, I ignored him and pressed onward. Six months later, our sales team was struggling to close the deal when the manager who'd fallen asleep rose up to proclaim our technology to be the best available, and forcefully drove the purchase to completion. The sales team subsequently asserted that I was more effective when my audience was asleep than awake...

     73,

           Dave, AA6YQ


Reminds me of a Monty Python skit "The Dead Parrot". Except in this case, the punchline is "He's not asleep, he's under hypnosis".

Your telepathic skill made the sale that day!
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AK7V
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« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2012, 03:48:24 PM »

Very cool!  I don't understand all the HFTA plots, though -- what does the purple bar graph represent?  Also, how do you determine what take-off angle you're relying on (or should rely on) to make the contact?
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KY6R
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« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2012, 07:51:17 PM »

The purple bars on the graph show what takeoff angles are required for a given path, and the higher the bar, the more likely it is that you can work that DX at that angle.

So - when you plot your antennas given your terrain - you hope that your graph lines fall within the purple bars on the graph.

You can right click of those purple bars on the graph - and it tells you the percentage that that path is open at that angle - sort of a probability.

You can select any path and any direction with HFTA, and also select your (horizontal) antenna at whatever height you are thinking you might put your antenna up - and HFTA then uses the path, your antenna and your terrain to give you a probability of working DX in that path.

I always cross check this with VOACAP - which gives real time estimates of two stations - and their antennas and the probability that there will be a circuit open between them. I am sure that VOACAP uses flat ground though - so, in the "bowl" that I live in - I realize that VOACAP is always way overly-optimistic for my situation and terrain.
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