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Author Topic: No Signls on 20?  (Read 4867 times)
KD2BHY
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Posts: 20




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« on: July 08, 2013, 08:50:19 AM »

Hey everybody. For the past 4-5 months my interest in ham radio has been dwindling. Probably because whenever I turn on the rig, I only hear about 2-3 signals on 20 meters, and those signals are only about s4-s5. I havn't been able to make any contacts lately, and I don't know what the problem is. I have a ts520s, going into a tuner, going into a g5rv jr. this setup has been pretty effective in the past, but has started to fail. I really love the hobby and don't want to give it up, but hearing 2-3 s4 signals and nothing else is pretty discouraging. any ideas as to what the problem may be? do I need a different antenna?


                                             73s KD2BHY


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SWMAN
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Posts: 557




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« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2013, 09:03:11 AM »

 I asked the same question here last week but about all the bands being almost dead. We have been having low SFI numbers and high A and K index numbers which make conditions bad and unsettled. But 10 has opened up a bit last friday but seems dead again now. Hope things get better soon. Good luck  Jim W5JJG
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KD2BHY
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« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2013, 09:14:54 AM »

Thanks so much Jim. Just needed to be reassured i guess because i havn't been hearing anything.
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K8AXW
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« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2013, 09:17:18 AM »

BHY:  Here is a website that you can check to get an idea of what is going on when:

http://www.dxmaps.com/spots/map.php?Lan=E&Frec=14&ML=M&Map=W2L&DXC=N&HF=S&GL=N
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K9YLI
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« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2013, 07:18:45 AM »

Having a G5RV to years ,,many times  one of the  twin leads breaks at the  feed point.
no way to check except  take it down.( I have  ropes and pulleys on each end and the center..))
I have also had breaks mid point in the twin lead.
If you take it down.get a piece of automotive hose abut 8 linches long,about 3/16 or so, not critical, use black wire ties  to attach hose to center insulator,and to several spots down the twin lead, leaving the twin lead with a small bend or loop at the insulator.  This puts the strain on the plastic of the twin lead, not the wires at the connection to the center insulator.
 Wrap tape over the ties to keep the sun off them...

20 meters almost alwlays  has signals so if its weak, start checking  antenna  and inputs for  a failure.

It ain't always the suns fault..

 
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KK0G
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« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2013, 08:03:44 AM »


20 meters almost alwlays  has signals so if its weak, start checking  antenna  and inputs for  a failure.

It ain't always the suns fault..

 

Yep. If you've only been hearing a handful of weak stations on 20 meters for the last 4-5 months there is definitely something wrong with your station, it's not a lack of propagation.
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NO2A
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« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2013, 10:56:16 AM »

20m,just like 17m,has been better in the evening and later. If 17 is open,20 surely is. Even when conditions aren`t so hot I`ve worked stations on 17. If those bands are bad,I`d try 30 or 40m.
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M6GOM
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« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2013, 03:59:18 AM »

This. 20m in the UK is really opening up on an evening and is staying open well into the night. During the day it is extremely short skip with countries around 400 miles coming in S9+20 when they should really be almost inaudible on my antenna.
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2013, 10:41:07 AM »

I agree it sounds like something's wrong, and not the band conditions unless you're listening at some very odd hours.

Right now at 1740 UTC on July 10, SFI = 120, A = 9, K = 3.  Not great, but not bad.

Last night I spotted Tom HH5/KC0W (a friend of mine) on 14.222, dialed there and worked him instantly; I'm in Los Angeles, he's portable, vacationing in Haiti.  Zero problems, S9 signals both ways.

20m has actually been open very late at night (later than I go to bed, so not sure "how" late -- but way past dark).

I've been working into the Indian Ocean and Middle East on 20 around 7:30 - 8:30 PM local time.

Not sure what's going on a 2 AM or anything, as I'm not up then! Wink

But condx seem okay to me.

I'd check out the whole system.
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KE4JOY
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« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2013, 12:39:31 PM »

Made nearly all my contacts for the 13 colonies event on 20 meters last week.

I had 'just one more' but he was so weak I figured he would never hear me. I left it tuned to him, went and ate dinner, now he was a solid S9 and worked easily.

But yea the signals seem to be increasing up better in late afternoon. Especially in the grey line the dx just starts rolling in here into the south east.

Sometimes its just timing. Sometimes it's not. Don't let the tuner deceive you I once managed to tune into literally nothing (antenna detached) got a solid 1:2.1 with ten watts  Grin Boy the band was quiet!

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KE3WD
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« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2013, 05:29:01 PM »

So unscrew the PL-259 collar at the antenna jack at back of radio and pull the plug back until just the center conductor of the plug is contacting the center of the receptacle, no shield connected at all.  And listen again.  If you hear signals, it is time to check out feedline through to antenna for breaks, shorts, etc.  

The above won't take into account if there is a break in coax center conductor before it gets to the antenna.  Sticking any random piece of wire into the center of the antenna jack only and running it out across the floor can let you hear signals.  Just don't attempt to transmit in any of these situations. 

73
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KE4JOY
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« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2013, 11:13:44 AM »

Quote from: w7ait
3.   My general rule is anytime A index above 10, DX is difficult.  This past week or two I have been seeing A shoot up as high as 25 or so!  All the bands sound dead and I can't get over my backyard fence on 40 and the upper bands sound like the antenna is disconnected.

From this thread in "Propagation"

http://www.eham.net/ehamforum/smf/index.php/topic,89296.0.html
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RENTON481
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« Reply #12 on: July 14, 2013, 03:33:20 AM »

I'm not a ham, but a frequent monitor of the ham bands, and here in the NW US 20 meters has been up and down... but overall I'd say more 'up' than 'down'...

Although there have been a few days with low level signals, there have only been a handful of days over the past couple months I have heard nothing on 20 -- that was during a couple solar flares, with a very high noise level. 

There have been early evenings I've heard more signals on 17 meters than 20... but usually 20 seems to be the most active band.

And my listening is done with a digital SW portable and 20 ft of wire. 

So my guess is your antenna has a fault in it somewhere. 
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AC4RD
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Posts: 1236




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« Reply #13 on: July 14, 2013, 04:41:03 AM »

I'm not a ham, but a frequent monitor of the ham bands, and here in the NW US 20 meters has been up and down...

Renton, you sound like a pretty smart person.  If you ever decide to get a license and join us, you'll be an asset to ham radio!   73!   --ken
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SHORTWIRE
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Posts: 9




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« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2013, 12:57:56 PM »

BHY:  Here is a website that you can check to get an idea of what is going on when:

http://www.dxmaps.com/spots/map.php?Lan=E&Frec=14&ML=M&Map=W2L&DXC=N&HF=S&GL=N

Here you can check what propagation is currently like:

http://www.voacap.com

If you have an Android phone the app called DroidProp is highly recommended.
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