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Author Topic: Easysats from shack - what's needed?  (Read 65142 times)

Posts: 537

« Reply #60 on: May 12, 2013, 09:52:50 PM »

I have been reading this thread and I want to get involved with the ham satellites. I like the CJU and IOio style antenna's. I am disabled and unable to build an antenna.  Can somebody help me get an antenna?

Please send me an email.  pastor dot spaceboy at gmail dot com

Randy ka4nma

Posts: 534

« Reply #61 on: May 13, 2013, 05:03:42 AM »

I don't know your disability, Randy, so not sure if you are wanting to use a handheld antenna or not. If so, have you seen the Elk or Arrow antennas? They would perform about the same as an IOio antenna and most likely be a lighter depending on what the other would be built out of. The Arrow is pretty reasonable in cost and they have one that breaks down for portability. Plus, if you plan on using one handheld, they sell a diplexer that mounts on/in the Arrow.

Keep in mind that if you want to use an FM only radio, there is only one FM satellite working right now... SO-50, and it is a little hard to hear. Hopefully, Fox-1, another FM bird, will be up by sometime next year. If you want to work any of the other satellites you will need a VHF & UHF radio(s) capable of SSB/CW. And if you are wanting to use base radios for that and mount antennas outside, there are a lot of other choices for antennas in that case. You'll have to tell us what you are interested in doing exactly. In this thread, I started out thinking I'd buy an HT and build a little antenna (which I did) but ended up with a rotatable set of antennas on a tall tripod in my yard. (See my QRZ page)

And to everyone else in the thread, as well... I got out and removed the Ramsey preamp from the UHF side of the antenna yesterday. Glad I did! There is a section below the preamp that wasn't glued (on purpose) and water had gotten in there... (we had a big rain storm Saturday evening) I dried it out, rewired the coax connection and sealed the UHF side up permanently. So, no UHF preamp for this antenna setup, unless I mount a box up there and run a jumper cable. And if I'm going to do all that, I'll likely just wait until 'antennas V2.0' and try a cross arm design. The jury is still technically out on the 2m preamp, as I can still get that side apart (with no danger of water leaking; the lip on those joints face down) but after lacing up the cables with my wife's help and getting them strung up, running over to the house, it 'feels' done.  Smiley


Kevin, N4UFO


Posts: 13

« Reply #62 on: May 15, 2013, 11:26:44 AM »

Hi Kevin,

If you look for the Satellite handbook from about 12 years ago ( you can find these on ebay for cheap) there are instructions for building an egg beater antenna. This design is actually from about 1972 and the first one I built was in 1977 this worked well for me in its basic configuration for satellites and have used it with a ground screen about 15" down from the loops.

Designs that are made available to you are relatively inexpensive except for the M2 designs but they do work really well.

Now would be a good time to get a sat rig because most people are dumping their 821's, 736's and 910's because there is nothing really to work any more.You can get a 736 for about $450 but not from ebay with the two V/U modules the cw filter and usually the keyer. Remember the CW filter "Comes standard" with this radio so if you find one that doesn't ask why.

AMSAT is not once what it was and they have dropped the ball on many things the past several years after the AP-40 fiasco, (failing to remove the rocket covers before pre-launch resulting in half the spacecraft going ballistic).

AO-7 made in a garage in southern Ontario continues to send us some surprises. Practice with the FM birds and hopefully later this year or next AO-40 phase 3E will be up!

Keep it up and don't give up!

Glenn, VA7VO

Posts: 611


« Reply #63 on: May 15, 2013, 11:53:11 AM »

AO-40 had a plastic cap left on a vent line for the propulsion system.

As a result, the lines could not be purged between engine firings.

During preparations for the second engine firing, this caused the two hypergolic propellants to mix in the lines and explode, resulting in a massive amount of damage to the spacecraft.

It was partially recovered and remained somewhat usable until the main battery failed.

I have no idea where you get your ridiculous notion about "failing to remove rocket covers" and "half the spacecraft going ballistic", as that did NOT happen.

If you're going slam AMSAT for a human error, which I agree should have been caught during close-out procedures (NOT "pre-flight"), then get your facts straight.


Posts: 534

« Reply #64 on: May 17, 2013, 09:29:12 PM »

Hi Glenn, thanks for the post... I guess you didn't read all the way through the thread, it is a long one. But I am up and running with a couple of good homebrew directional antennas and have over 50 QSOs in the log. See my QRZ page for pics (at the bottom):

Now would be a good time to get a sat rig because most people are dumping their 821's, 736's and 910's because there is nothing really to work any more.

Thanks for this info. At the moment I am managing okay with the Kenwood 2m and my Icom UHF rig. I have looked at the 821s and 910s and thought the 821 would be something to watch for. Wasn't familiar with the 736... and I notice you didn't mention the Kenwood 790. it was many years ago, but that's the only sat rig I have actually laid my hands on... it sure was a nice one. Of course, I have no idea how they have held up.

What I would actually like to get is an 847... I don't want to get rid of my current HF rig, but the 847 sure seems like a nice one to me. The biggest obstacle to all of this is money. For the time being I am probably going to have to run with what I've got, but it's always good to be wise to what's out there... That way, if I run across a bargain, I will know it when I see it. As opposed to finding an overpriced problem, AKA a money pit.  Grin

73 and thanks for posting.

Kevin N4UFO
« Last Edit: May 17, 2013, 09:31:34 PM by N4UFO » Logged

Posts: 534

« Reply #65 on: June 11, 2013, 08:55:52 PM »

What I would actually like to get is an 847... I don't want to get rid of my current HF rig, but the 847 sure seems like a nice one to me.

For any friends who were following this thread... I got one last weekend. Found an ad on the local Craig's list. The rig is like new... not a scratch on it. Worked the birds over the weekend, and all I can say is 'wow'. Now if I can ever get around to getting up the new preamps and antennas I acquired a couple weeks ago.  Roll Eyes

To help offset the expense of the new rig, I decided to sell my old ones. The 2m is gone, but if anyone is interested in a multi-mode rig for 430 Mhz, I placed an ad in the eHam classifieds.  Smiley

Kevin, N4UFO
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