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Author Topic: Staions hear me, but I can't hear them  (Read 9590 times)
KD8TZC
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Posts: 67




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« on: June 13, 2013, 04:50:45 AM »

I participate on a 10M local net each Wed, and I have been having a devil of a time with my antenna.  I have a 10M dipole antenna that is mounted in my attic (I know, not the best place, but that's the best location for now) and it tunes up nicely with the tuner, but I can only hear stations who are really far away (DX stations) or really really close (1 - 6 miles away).  Stations that are greater than 6 miles in the local area though I can hardly hear at all.  Those stations that I can't hear though say they can hear me at a 599.

So what gives?  Is it something on my end, and if so, how do I improve the situation?

I have a G5RV Jr setup that I might try, but that antenna gave me fits in the past, so I would prefer to just get this simple little dipole working.

The dipole is homebrew.  I'm using 12 AWG wire for each of the legs of the antenna, and I also have a DX Engineering 1:1 Balun that is connected to my coax.  I also have this running through an Ameritron RCS-4 Antenna switch (since I also have my UHF & VHF antenna's up there and only run one wire to the attic).  I checked to make sure I was on the correct antenna going through the RCS-4.

This just drives me nuts that others can hear me, but I am deaf to those who are broadcasting.

Thanks,

John
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John - KD8TZC
WX7G
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Posts: 6136




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« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2013, 05:23:49 AM »

What does your S-meter indicate for 10 meter noise?
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N3DF
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Posts: 252




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« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2013, 05:50:23 AM »

The 10 meter dipole should have a low enough SWR on the band portion you regularly use so that a tuner is unnecessary.  If not, your attic is severly interacting with your dipole. 
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Neil N3DF
KD8TZC
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Posts: 67




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« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2013, 05:53:47 AM »

S meter shows S0 - S1.  I know the attic is interfering, but again, that is my only option at this point.  I live in a restricted area, and really don't feel like fighting the HOA (or an XYL who doesn't want anything "ugly" on the house).

I do have an LDG auto tuner for the antenna that I am using to even out the SWR curve.  I just don't understand why the receive is so bad when everyone can hear me just fine.  I thought it normally is the other way around as you can use a coat hanger as a receive only antenna (in theory).
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John - KD8TZC
KV4PL
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Posts: 42




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« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2013, 05:56:15 AM »

I have a G5rv jr I just put up and so far it's working great. I get 10 - 80 meters with my tuner. First 15 minutes of having it up I made several dx contacts on 20 meters.
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AA4PB
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Posts: 12897




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« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2013, 06:12:03 AM »

It's in the realm of possibility that you have something wrong with your receiver. Does the noise level (with no signals) decrease when you disconnect the antenna? An S0-S1 S-meter reading seems pretty low for an attic antenna because the typical house is full of noise generating devices.
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KD8TZC
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Posts: 67




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« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2013, 06:29:44 AM »

A few weeks back, the noise level was quite high (S4+) and I couldn't hear anything because of that.  If I disconnect does the noise level DECREASE if I disconnect the antenna?  If it is at S0 - S1 (bottom of the scale) how could it decrease?

On PSK, I can hear other stations on 10M (South America and other parts of the US), and I have made DX contacts out of the country, so I know I am receiving long distance.  Also, if I swing the dial over to 40m, I can pick up stations around the states transmitting... so I know the rig is receiving.... just not that medium distance station for some reason.

Half of me wants to just get a manufactured antenna that has a good reputation and be done with it.  I was looking at one of the Alpha Delta multi-band antenna's (DX-EE).  I just hate to spend the money if it is something in my setup.

Would the coating on the wire I am using have anything to do with reception issues?  It is just AWG Zip wire that has been split in half.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2013, 06:39:43 AM by KD8TZC » Logged

John - KD8TZC
WX7G
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« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2013, 07:55:54 AM »

Transmit and Receive are reciprocal. That is, if you are running 100 watts and the station you are in contact with is running 100 watts the received signal power at each end of the link will be the same. You say the other fellows give you S-9 and so you should receive them S-9. It appears there is something wrong with your receiver.
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K4SAV
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Posts: 1847




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« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2013, 08:36:40 AM »

Transmit and Receive are reciprocal. That is, if you are running 100 watts and the station you are in contact with is running 100 watts the received signal power at each end of the link will be the same. You say the other fellows give you S-9 and so you should receive them S-9. It appears there is something wrong with your receiver.

Since he hears DX OK, it's more likely that something is wrong with his signal reports from the locals...  unless maybe the locals are using a horizontal antenna for listening and a vertical for transmitting.
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KD8TZC
Member

Posts: 67




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« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2013, 08:47:16 AM »

Okay... that's what I was wondering.  Could the other guys be running a cloud burner or vertical while I am horizontal.  The ones I hear are quite clear and loud, but the ones that were faint were very faint.  I'll follow-up with a few of them and see if they can give me specifics of what they were running last night.  Also, possibly they had their power at a lower level.  I normally adjust mine so it so the ALC is within range, but maybe some were just running low power.
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John - KD8TZC
KD2CJJ
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Posts: 369




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« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2013, 09:02:02 AM »

Do you have an antenna analyzer?  You should check to see if where your having issues with the antenna being resonant and having a near conjugate match.  Practically your reactance can be very far but have acceptable SWRs - Your antenna though would not be resonant.  This situation would manifest into the symptom you are experiencing.  I had the exact same symptom as you.  Others could hear me but I could not hear them.  I was using a Tarheel antenna as a base antenna and used the guide as the bible of where to tune the antenna.  Once I hooked it up on my analyzer my reactance was no where near what it needed to be BUT my SWRs were within acceptable range.  Once I brought the antenna into resonance (0 reactance) the issue of not hearing was resolved.  Of course my power output was probably also significantly improved but unfortunately due to changes in band conditions each day you can get a light bulb to radiate 5k miles and get a 1:1 SWR while not being resonant - typically its the Antenna system (antenna plus feed-line) acting as the radiator in this case.

This may not be your issue but its a great first place to start...  I spent weeks until I borrowed an analyzer thinking it was everything else.  Simple fix was that the antenna needed to be re-tuned.  My mistake was I was relying on SWRs.  Since then I have engrossed my self in antenna theory.  Anyway good luck..
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73

Mike
KD2CJJ
WB2WIK
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Posts: 20611




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« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2013, 09:18:55 AM »

What kind of rig are you using on 10m?  Make, model?
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KD8TZC
Member

Posts: 67




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« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2013, 09:19:31 AM »

Thanks Mike... I have no knowledge of antenna reactance, so I will have to look into that.  Yes I do have an antenna analyzer (YouKits FG-01 http://www.tentec.com/products/FG%252d01-Antenna-Analyzer.html) so I hope it has reactance on it.  I think it shows the SWR curve and impedance.... not sure if the impedance is the same or can help me find the answer.  So are you saying that I need to get the reactance down to 0 and if so how does one do that (any good reading material that you could point me to?)

My rig is a Kenwood TS-440S.

Thanks,
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John - KD8TZC
WB2WIK
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Posts: 20611




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« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2013, 09:28:23 AM »

TS-440S is a good rig, but quite old.  Sometimes receivers drop off in sensitivity on the highest frequency bands first, while retaining full sensitivity at lower frequencies.

You may well have a receiving problem.  If you know a local who does "radio repair" and has an accurate calibrated signal generator, maybe get it checked out.

It is true that on 10m, very local signals and then "DX" signals which are greatly enhanced by favorable propagation will be stronger than stations out 10-20-30 miles -- that's pretty common.  But if they all hear you better than you hear them, that doesn't point to any kind of antenna problem...it points to a receiver problem; and 10m is the band most likely to have such a problem as receivers slowly drift out of alignment, components age, etc.
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N9BH
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Posts: 44




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« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2013, 10:52:55 AM »

Could be that there is some corrosion or poor connection in your antenna system that transmit breaks down but receive cannot.
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