16 Jan 2013

Band Plans and AM - Feb 2013 RadCom

In the new February RadCom that just dropped on my mat at lunchtime there is a copy of the band plans for all bands from 136kHz to 134GHz.  What I fail to understand is why does the RSGB appear so anti-AM?

For many years now there has been a clear choice for an AM centre of activity on 144.55MHz. The RSGB has been made aware of this on many occasions and yet still we have a (begrudging) footnote, just about visible if you look hard, saying this is where to look. Even this comment ends with, "although this frequency is not officially recognised within the 2m band plan". Why not? We have a FAX calling frequency listed and goodness knows how many DV Internet Voice Gateway frequencies listed, yet we cannot be allowed an official AM centre of activity properly listed! AM is not a common mode these days, but those who enjoy the mode need to know where to meet on the band. The RSGB is giving no help at all here.

I also get frustrated with the 10m band plan where AM is again almost treated as a disease. Most AM activity has been in the 29.0-29.1MHz segment for years now: this is THE part of the band where AM users congregate, yet the all-mode section with up to 6kHz bandwidth does not start until 29.1MHz upwards! Does no-one who creates these band plans actually listen to see what actually goes on? In the last 30 years I have had many AM contacts on 10m and not one outside 29.0 - 29.1MHz.

So, next time you consider the band plans, please:

(a) Add an AM "centre of activity" frequency into the 2m band plan - it is 144.550MHz in case you don't know.
(b) Show 29-29.1MHz as the AM sub-band in the 10m band plan.


David Cope said...

It's not just the RSGB but quite a few individual amateurs as well. You only have to read the comments on the 5MHz forum to see that. Was it too much to ask that ONE frequency be left clear for AM operation? Yes it was if anyone listened in on the days of the new NoV allocations.

Best. David G8JGO.

Anonymous said...

RSGB has put an AM footnote in for 5MHz for the wider bandlets, which shows they cant be all that bad

Roger G3XBM said...

Please don't misunderstand me: there are a lot of good folk working on behalf of the RSGB that I greatly respect. It is our national society and deserves our support.

It's just that they seem to have, for reasons I don't understand, an anti-AM stance. This is illogical and plain stupid. People have been trying for years to make them see sense and getting nowhere.

AM is a mode with lots to commend it still and should be promoted every bit as much as modes like FM. AM is a good mode for homebrewing simple kit. AM is FUN.

Today on 29-29.1MHz there were S9 AM signals coming in from across the Atlantic again. Oh, sorry, that isn't where AM is used is it RSGB!

Julia Hardy 2EOJUL said...

How can I download and print out a copy of the latest band plans for 2013? I have an old one which is 3 pages long but the ones on the RSGB site seem to have loads of pages.

Julia Hardy

Currently on the Advanced Distance Learning Course

kenneth austen said...

I was using 29.1 on AM back in 1978 with a Heathkit dx100u AM , so that slot is well established. From ken gw4gja.