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Author Topic: LDG Electronics ad in July QST  (Read 2671 times)
W5TD
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Posts: 655




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« on: July 11, 2018, 09:50:08 AM »

I was reading the July QST the other day and came upon the ad on page 6 from LDG Electronics.  In reading it, I was surprised by the number of inaccuracies in it, here are the ones I spotted, with some comments listed below:

1. "Peaking in 1956, the very high solar flux of Cycle 19 had the ionosphere just crackling:

It is generally agreed upon that Cycle 19 peaked in March 1958

2. "Cycle 24 has been a complete fizzle"

Ok, fizzle is a subjective term, but I know one ham who started DXing at the beginning of Cycle 24 and went from 0 countries to honor roll.  Doesn't sound like a complete fizzle to me.  In my own case, with a very modest setup, I worked FT5ZM on both 20 CW and SSB during cycle 24, and that is over 12,000 miles short path for me, the furthest DXCC entity from Oklahoma.  I worked Heard Island on 30 during Cycle 24, which is over 11,000 miles at a beam heading of 165 degrees, so much of the path is over the southern polar zone.  Heard might be the hardest path of any DXCC entity from here.  I worked India on 12 meter long path also during Cycle 24, so I wouldn't characterize it as a "complete fizzle."

3. "The lowest solar activity since formal recording keeping began in 1750"

Cycle 24 peaked in April 2014 with a maximum sunspot number of 79.3.  In comparison, Solar Cycle 5 peaked in February 1805 with a maximum sunspot number of 47.5, Cycle 6 peaked in May 1816 with a maximum sunspot number of 45.8, and Cycle 14 peaked in February 1906 with a maximum sunspot number of 63.5, so at least 3 previous cycles had lower solar activity if we define solar activity by number of sunspots.

4. "We're on the downside of Cycle 24 heading into a minimum that will bottom out some time after 2021"

Cycle 24 started in December 2008, and if it runs the traditional 11 years, the new Cycle 25 should start in 2019 or 2020.  Scientists are now thinking that it might be starting later this year. So, the minimum is already pretty much here, we won't be reaching it after 2021.

5. "When propagation gets touch we all cast our eyes downward to the low bands, 40, 80, and even 160 meters.  There's plenty of groundwave to be had there, the ionosphere be damned."

There is a lot more happening on the low bands than groundwave.  I know plenty of people, myself included, who work DX on those bands during the solar minimum.  This would not be possible with groundwave only, which would be limited to a few 100 miles.  Look at how far you work on 80 and 160 during the day, that shows groundwave propagation thanks to the D layer absorbing everything that gets to the ionosphere.

6. "... and they're nice and wide so there's room for everyone."

160 meters is 200khz wide, which is the smallest of the traditional (non-WARC) HF bands.  40 meters is 300khz, which is the second smallest of the traditional HF bands.  Not sure you can characterize these as nice and wide, at least compared to the other HF bands.  Now 80 meters is the second widest HF band after 10 meters.

So, there are 6 inaccuracies I noticed just casually reading this ad.  Maybe there are more.  I am kind of surprised these slipped through the fact checking process.

73 John AF5CC
« Last Edit: July 11, 2018, 09:52:12 AM by AF5CC » Logged
KM1H
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Posts: 5559




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« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2018, 03:15:33 PM »

Quote
Ok, fizzle is a subjective term, but I know one ham who started DXing at the beginning of Cycle 24 and went from 0 countries to honor roll.  Doesn't sound like a complete fizzle to me.

You can do wonders with a couple of remote stations out there for hire, even in other countries if you have no morals, and also list operations.

I dont count those as real hams.
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K7JQ
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Posts: 1316




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« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2018, 06:56:47 AM »

Quote
Ok, fizzle is a subjective term, but I know one ham who started DXing at the beginning of Cycle 24 and went from 0 countries to honor roll.  Doesn't sound like a complete fizzle to me.

You can do wonders with a couple of remote stations out there for hire, even in other countries if you have no morals, and also list operations.

I dont count those as real hams.

Agreed. I'll only operate with my equipment, in my home, with my antennas on my property. That's real "wireless" with your abilities. Anyone can rent time remotely on a huge superstation in Maine, blasting his way to other continents.

On LDG, what's the difference...this bottom cycle sucks. They're just trying to sell stuff.
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K6AER
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Posts: 5745




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« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2018, 04:34:30 PM »

Current cycle is not that bad. I have had my station set up for the last 5 months with a dipole at 50 feet and a half wave vertical on 20 meters. In 5 months I have worked and confirmed 141 countries on SSB.

Radio is a IC-7300

Amplifier is a OM2000+

Antenna are home brew.

Having a low noise floor is key to DX operation. My noise level is ZERO.
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K0UA
Member

Posts: 4832




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« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2018, 11:25:03 AM »

I have went from a country count in the 60's to 181 as of today in less than a year.  Yes conditions are not great. And I don't have "great" antennas either.  An MA5B minibeam at 40 feet, an OCFD at 35 feet and an Inverted L for 160 at 45 feet high in a cedar tree.  FT8 has helped a bunch, but many of those countries are CW and SSB too.
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73  James K0UA
ARRL Missouri Technical Specialist
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