28 Aug 2013

More antenna progress at the new QTH

After having our little grandchildren stay for 6 days (without their parents) the new home has now returned to normal (i.e. tidy) and all the toys have been put away, mine excepted! So, apart from sorting out and decorating the old QTH, my thoughts are increasingly turning to the autumn ham projects again.

I've just collected my Par 10/20/40 end-fed HF antenna and a 1m solid copper ground rod from the old QTH with the aim of erecting the former and pounding in the latter in the next few days. The Par antenna will allow me to get active on some of the HF bands. The earth rod will form the far end of my new earth electrode pair "antenna" which will be used for a series of tests on 8.97, 136 and 472kHz from the new garden. My 8.97kHz beacon can be fired up in QRSS quite easily so RX tests out in the fens can start as soon as the earth-electrode antenna is ready. It will be fascinating to see how this compares at the new QTH.

My big wheel for 2m has still to be procured or made and erected. When this is in place I shall try some QRP weak signal work as mentioned before.

Something else I want to do is some tests locally on 6, 2 and 70cm using a signal generator connected to my V2000 antenna. Tests with G6ALB suggest just a few uW are enough to reach the next village. So I was wondering what the coverage to a mobile would be like locally with, say, 10uW from my generator? A drive-around test in all directions might be fun.

We are still waiting for Virgin Media internet and home phone access though - due Sept 2nd - to allow proper WSPR tests to begin. I bought a 3G wi-fi dongle with 3GB of data which is being used as a stop-gap. WSPR is my mode of choice when testing new antennas or new set-ups as the internet database (near instant) feedback gives a very good idea of how things are working.

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