30 Nov 2021

137kHz WSPR

At the moment I am on 137kHz WSPR with the Wellgood active loop. It will stay on overnight. It would be a miracle if I copy anything! As usual, lots of stations on RX, but very few on TX.

UPDATE 2044z:  Still no spots, although I am not surprised.

Scale - NOT amateur radio

For a very long time I have been puzzled by scale. One the one hand the universe seems immensely vast. On the other hand at the atomic scale things are immensely small. We experience things at our scale. 

What I wonder is this: does something link these two? Is the universe actually within us? Our brains cannot begin to comprehend, but our thinking about both the macro and micro scales has radically changed in 200 years.

In another 200 years people may look back at us in amazement.

Kindness - NOT amateur radio

We live right next door to our village windmill and museum. We heard today that a very kind man from the USA who was evacuated into our village from London in 1941 has just made a very generous donation to the museum. He is now 88 years old and he still thinks Burwell is the nicest place in the world despite having widely travelled in his lifetime. What's more, one of the museum founders remembers sitting next to him at school!

See https://burwellmuseum.org.uk/ .

Long ago - NOT amateur radio


This is how farming was long ago.

Geosynchronous Oscar 100 activity.

Every few weeks I give an update on activity levels on the narrowband transponder on this satelllite by looking at the web SDR at Goonhilly Downs in Cornwall, UK. Activity levels were low when I looked at 1100z today. Activity levels can change very quickly, but remains well below capacity. There is plenty of space.

15m FT8 RX

At the moment I am on 15m FT8 RX using the Wellgood active loop on the shack window. So far today, after about 35 minutes, 116 stations spotted with the furthermost ZS4JAN (9386km).

UPDATE 1623z: 
518 stations spotted on 15m FT8 RX today. Furthermost is VK4DW (14466km),

UPDATE 1857:  530 stations spotted today. Now QRT.

10m QRP WSPR TX (Tuesday)

 At the moment I am on 10m WSPR TX with my 500mW W5OLF beacon. Two spots by local G4KPX (14km) only so far.

UPDATE 1120z: Plenty of spots from G4KPX, but nobody else yet.

Sunspots - Tuesday November 30th 2021

 Solar flux is 90 and the SSN 47. A=9 and K=0.

29 Nov 2021

Cosy - NOT amateur radio

We like our bungalow to be cosy and inviting. It is not "posh", but we like it as it is. 

The photo shows the lounge. We draw the curtains at night.

QCX-mini 5W QRP

Sadly, this is probably beyond my fine motor skills to build these days, but this looks an excellent QRP transceiver. It is not (yet?) available above 17m, but with solar conditions improving, it would not surprise me to see kits for 15,12 and 10m shortly. It is also available built and tested.

I see it also supports beacon modes like WSPR. It is tiny.

They are also working on a tiny digital transceiver. I hope they make a 10m version. These days I mainly use FT8 and WSPR.

See https://www.qrp-labs.com/qcxmini.html .

UPDATE 1647z: Just received a reply to my query.  Hans is planning a version for the higher HF bands, but wants to catch up on the current version first! Parts supply is very difficult recently.

10m FT8 RX (Monday)

My gear has been on for about 40 minutes. At 1008z 67 stations had been spotted on RX with the furthermost ZS5TC (9604km). 

UPDATE 1301z:  166 stations spotted on 10m FT8 RX.

UPDATE 1626z:  Now QRT. 253 stations spotted today on 10m FT8 RX.

Litter pickers - NOT amateur radio

Every Saturday a group of volunteers goes around the village picking up litter. This week it was leaves and not litter. They concentrated on clearing the fallen leaves on a popular walkway called the Causeway. Centuries ago this was the route used by monks going to Ely.

160m FT8 RX overnight

Using the tiny Wellgood active loop stuck to the shack window, 216 stations spotted on RX with the furthermost WA1NGH (5427km) in Connecticut, USA.

Sunspots - Monday November 29th 2021

 Solar flux is 92 and the SSN 53. A=9 and K=4.

28 Nov 2021

160m FT8 RX (Sunday)

Since about 1840z, I QSYed from 15m to 160m FT8 using the Wellgood active loop on the shack window. It is now 1852z and so far 25 stations have been spotted with the furthermost ES5MG (1786km).

UPDATE 1915z:  So far this evening 46 stations spotted with the furthermost EA7HY (1829km).

UPDATE 2008z:  68 stations spotted so far with the best DX UT1FT (2204km).

UPDATE 2217z:  130 stations spotted.

Rowan berries - NOT amateur radio

We have several rowan trees in our garden. On some the berries get gobbled up by the birds. Others get left and are still on the trees. I guess different berries taste different and some are not liked and get left. Most leaves have gone, but many still have berries.

Optical communication webpage

In the past, I got lots of information from Clint KA7EOI's Optical Pages, that have many links.  One of the most sensitive receivers by K3KCP was linked to from Clint's optical pages.

See https://sites.google.com/view/g3xbm4/home/optical-nanowaves/over-the-horizon .

15m FT8 RX (Sunday)

My 15m FT8 RX with the active Wellgood RX loop on the window was turned on at 1006z. So far today (at 1217z) 248 stations spotted on RX with the furthermost YD1FRU (11796km). 

UPDATE 1749z:  So far today, 608 stations spotted on 15m FT8 RX. Certainly the Wellgood active loop is allowing me to copy all over the world on 15m FT8 RX.

Illuminated tree - NOT amateur radio


This is in our local churchyard.

30m FT8 in the last day

In the last day, 155 stations have been spotted on 30m FT8 RX with the Wellgood active loop on the shack window.

Sunspots - Sunday November 28th 2021

Solar flux is 92 and the SSN 53. A=5 and K=1.

27 Nov 2021

The early medieval period - NOT amateur radio

One of the joys of retirement is learning for fun. One of my blanks is early medieval history, so I am doing a University of the Third Age course on Medieval History. 

We are now well through the autumn term, so I thought it would be a good thing to make a note of the main things that I have recently been made aware of. Not all relate to Medieval History.

  • In the early Christian church there were lots of different beliefs
  • What was actually included in what we now know as the bible was a distillation done many centuries later.
  • In many ways early Islam was more tolerant than early Christianity.
  • The modern state of Israel was not what the UK 1917 Balfour Declaration expected. Jewish homeland yes, Jewish state, no.
  • Many of the Jews in modern Israel may not be descended from the Jews of old!
  • Many Arabs hate the West as our track record is poor.
  • Religions have a lot to answer for over the centuries.

30m FT8 RX (Saturday) with the Wellgood active loop

As 10m was poor here, I QSYed 30m FT8 RX, which I had not yet tried on the Wellgood active loop. I QSYed at about 1527z. So far, 18 stations spotted (all EU) at 1520z.

UPDATE 1803z:  77 stations spotted.

UPDATE 1952z:  92 stations spotted.

UPDATE 2137z:   110 stations spotted today.


 At about 1230z, I QSYed to 10m FT8 RX with the indoor Wellgood active loop.  No stations spotted as yet.

UPDATE 1510z:  Still no spots on the Wellgood active loop.   Now QRT on 10m. Not sure if this is conditions or the loop NF being too high.

Sunspots Zoom lecture

 Last night the Cambridge Radio Club (CDARC) has another very successful Zoom talk. This time it was about sunspots and given by Martin G3ZAY who has written the HF column in RadCom for some years. Being on Zoom we were joined by a member in Canada. I am a great fan of Zoom lectures, which are far better than I ever expected.

Round Church, Cambridge - NOT amateur radio

There are very few round churches in the UK. 

Cambridge has one.  I think it is now a brass rubbing centre.

St John's College Cambridge - NOT amateur radio

This photo was taken yesterday in Cambridge.  It was taken from outside the Round Church.

15m FT8 RX with the Wellgood active loop RX antenna

For about 2 hours I have been on 15m FT8 RX with the Wellgood active loop RX antenna on the shack window.

So far today, 276 stations spotted on RX with the furthermost VK4ZC (16530km) in Australia. 

Even as high as 15m (21MHz), the Wellgood loop on the shack window works really well and I have made no attempt whatsoever to optimise it. It is just stuck on with Blutak! I shall have to try it on 10m!

UPDATE 1225z:  359 stations spotted on 15m FT8 RX.

Sunspots - Saturday November 27th 2021

 Solar flux is 92 and the SSN 52. A=4 and K=1.

26 Nov 2021

160m FT8 RX (Friday)

Since about 1935z, I have been on 160m FT8 RX with the Wellgood active loop on the shack window.  Furthermost is UX0KR (1795km). So far, 37 stations have been spotted. It is now 1944z.

The Wellgood active RX loop

As you can see, I have used this quite a bit in the last week. It was designed by George Smart M1GEO after he accidentally cooked his Wellbrook active loop! 

Overall, it works very well, but I wonder if it is less good with weak signals on the higher HF bands. Mostly, EU stations are copied, but where the RX noise figure dominates, maybe it is less effective?

See https://www.george-smart.co.uk/projects/wellgood_loop/ .

Autumn - NOT amateur radio

It has turned much colder in the UK and we can see we are now in autumn. This photo shows the leaves in our garden.

40m FT8 RX

Until I went on 20m at about 0900z, I was on 40m FT8 RX. Overall, the furthermost was FS4WBS (6632km). Once again, I was using the Wellgood active RX loop on the shack window.

20m FT8 RX (Friday)

It is now 0913z. I am monitoring 20m FT8 RX will the Wellgood active loop antenna. So far, 33 stations have been spotted. 

UPDATE 0927z:  62 stations spotted.

UPDATE 1616z:  620 stations spotted on 20m FT8 RX with the Wellgood loop.

UPDATE 1905z: 638 stations spotted. Time to QSY.

Where I come from in South Devon - NOT amateur radio

This is where I come from in South Devon. We have been hereabouts since the early 1400s. 

Sunspots - Friday November 26th 2021

 Solar flux is 94 and the SSN 20.  A=4 and K=1. 

25 Nov 2021

40m FT8 RX (Thursday)

As 15m is getting pretty quiet here, I have QSYed to 40m FT8 RX using the Wellgood active loop antenna.  I QSYed at 1933z.  At 1945z, 26 stations spotted. Furthermost is CU3AK (2586km) in the Azores.

TinySA spectrum analyser

Amazon Prime sell these, but I gather there are several copies on sale and only some are "the genuine article". My wife wants to buy me something for Christmas and birthday (which is very near Christmas) and this seems a good idea. It is certainly better than socks!

If you know who sells the "real deal", please let me know.

At around £63 this looks excellent value, especially as it can also be used as a signal generator.

Rally cancelled

The rally for the Bishop Auckand Radio Amateurs Club, due to take place on Sunday November 28th, has been cancelled due to the pandemic. It is hoped to hold it next year.

80m FT8 RX last evening and overnight

Last evening and overnight I was on 80m FT8 RX with the Wellgood active loop on the shack window indoors. 796 stations spotted, but nothing from the Americas.

The Wellgood active loop is working really well. For RX this antenna is perfect: all I have to do is change the WSJT-X band and the RX frequency.

15m FT8 RX (Thursday)

At the moment I am on 15m FT8 RX with the Wellgood active loop on the shack window. So far, 96 stations spotted with the furthermost PY7ZC (7540km).  It is now 1035z and I have been on since about 0900z.

UPDATE 1232z:  232 stations spotted with the furthermost LW2EDM (11776km).

UPDATE 1518z:  468 stations spotted. Furthermost is LU8XW (13474km).

UPDATE 1926z:
583 stations spotted on 15m FT8 RX.

Sunspots - Thursday November 25th 2021

 Solar flux is 83 and the SSN 39.   A=5 and K=1.

24 Nov 2021

80m FT8 RX (Wednesday)

As 15m seems to have got quiet here, I QSYed to 80m FT8 at 1745z. The antenna is still the Wellgood active loop. Already after 75 minutes 175 stations spotted. Furthermost is RW0AR (5585km).

UPDATE 1955z:  249 unique stations spotted so far on 80m FT8 RX.

UPDATE 2030z:  327 stations spotted.

Why? - NOT amateur radio

It seems that many things get worse over time, not better. 

At one time Google supported Picasa (a photo editing tool) that was excellent and allowed you to send photos to friends very easily. This has gone.  Coats have fewer pockets. Underpants are thinner, no doubt made in sweat shops to a fixed price. Bags from the National Trust have fewer pockets. The latest is something from Google Adsense saying they no longer support certain sorts of adverts.

I am sure some things are better, but ,"if it ain't broke, don't fix it".

Boris - NOT amateur radio

Boris Johnson is the UK Prime Minister. 

He has had a difficult time since being in office, but this week he made a bumbling speech to business leaders and lost his way with his notes. As an ad lib he mentioned he had been to Peppa Pig World.

I give him a few months before he is replaced. His ruling party, the Conservative Party, is likely to lose support if he stays in charge. This is my view. Others may think he is wonderful. Sorry, but I don't.

This cartoon will mean more to people in the UK who know Boris.

15m FT8 RX (Wednesday)

For about an hour I have been on 15m FT8 RX with my Wellgood active loop on the shack window. So far, 80 stations spotted with the furthermost VR2XMT (9530km) in Hong Kong.

UPDATE 1410z: So far today, 348 stations spotted from most continents.

UPDATE 1656z:  637 stations so far spotted today on 15m FT8 RX with the Wellbrook active loop.

Old age - NOT amateur radio

This came yesterday from my brother.  As one of those old folk, I can relate to it.

You know …… time has a way of moving quickly and catching you unaware of the passing years.

It seems just yesterday that I was young and embarking on my new life. Yet in a way, it seems like eons ago, and I wonder where all the years went. 

I know that I lived them all. 

I have glimpses of how it was back then and of all my hopes and dreams. 

However, here it is …… the last quarter of my life and it catches me by surprise.

How did I get here so fast? 

Where did the years go and where did my youth go?

I remember well seeing older people through the years and thinking that those older people were years away from me and that I was only on the first quarter and that the fourth quarter was so far off that I could not visualise it or imagine fully what it would be like.

Yet, here it is …… my friends are retired and getting grey - they move slower and I see an older person now. Some are in better and some worse shape than me but I see the great change. They’re not like the ones that I remember who were young and vibrant …… but like me, their age is beginning to show and we are now those older folks that we used to see and never thought we'd become.

Each day now, I find that just getting a shower is a real target for the day! and taking a nap is not a treat anymore, it's mandatory! because if I don't of my own free will, I fall asleep where I sit!

And so …… now I enter into this new season of my life unprepared for all the aches and pains and the loss of strength and ability to go and do things that I wish I had done but never did! But at least I know that, though I’m on the last quarter and I'm not sure how long it will last, that when it's over on this earth... it's over. 

A new adventure will begin!

Yes, I have regrets. There are things I wish I hadn't done …… things I should have done but truely there are many things I'm happy to have done. 

It's all in a lifetime.

So, if you're not on the last quarter yet, let me remind you that it will be here faster than you think. So, whatever you would like to accomplish in your life do it quickly! 

Don't put things off too long! Life goes by so quickly. 

So, do what you can today, as you can never be sure whether you're on the last quarter or not! 

You have no promise that you will see all the seasons of life.... so, live for today and say all the things that you want your loved ones to remember - and hope that they appreciate and love you for all the things that you have done for them in all the years past!

‘Life’ is a gift to you. 

Be Happy!

Have a great day!

Remember, it is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.

You may think;

Going out is good - but coming home is better!

You forget names - but it's okay because some people forgot they even knew you!

You realize you're never going to be really good at anything like golf - but you like the outdoors!

The things you used to care to do, you aren't as interested in anymore - but you really don't care that you aren't as interested.

You sleep better on a lounge chair with the TV on than in bed – you call it ‘pre-sleep’!

You miss the days when everything worked with just an ‘On’ and ‘Off’ switch!

 You tend to use more 4 letter words – ‘what’ and ‘when’

You have lots of clothes in your wardrobe, more than half of which you will never wear – but just in case!

Old is good - 

Old is comfortable

Old is safe 

Old songs

Old movies

…… and best of all,

Friends of old!

So, stay well, ‘Old friend!’

Have a fantastic day! 

Have an awesome quarter – whichever one you’re in!

Take care

It's not what you gather but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived.

60m FT8

Last evening and overnight I was on 60m FT8 using the Wellgood active loop RX antenna on the shack windowsill. Best DX was 9Y4DG (7209km). Earlier attempts at 60m WSPR resulted in just 3 unique spots. In the first few minutes on FT8, 16 stations were spotted!! 

Sunspots - Wednesday November 24th 2021

 Solar flux is 80 and the SSN 39. A=9 and K=2.

23 Nov 2021

60m WSPR RX (Tuesday)

For a change I am on 60m WSPR RX. There appears to be 2 WSPR frequencies and I am monitoring 5.3647MHz, which is in the WARC band.  The antenna is the Wellgood active loop on the shack window.

So far this evening, 3 German stations spotted on 60m WSPR.

Salcombe lifeboat disaster 1916 - NOT amateur radio

105 years ago the small town where I lived as a child experienced a tragedy. Most of the lifeboat crew were drowned. One of my aunts witnessed it. It must have left a deep scar on the community.

15m FT8 RX

As 10m FT8 RX was disappointing, I QSYed down to 15m, which was filled with North Americans on FT8 RX. 

As an experiment, I swapped the coax to my big-wheel for the Wellgood active loop. If anything, the Wellgood loop is better, so I have left it connected.

Already 51 stations spotted, most on the tiny indoor Wellgood active loop antenna.

UPDATE 1620z:  122 unique stations spotted, most on the Wellgood active loop antenna. I have now used the Wellgood active loop from 630m to 21m. Perhaps I should try it on a new band this evening?

Sunset, Salcombe, Devon - NOT amateur radio

This photo was on a Facebook group earlier today. It shows the sun going down last night in Salcombe, where I was brought up as a child.

Amazing run - NOT amateur radio

Kevin Sinfield has successfully completed his amazing run of 101 miles in 24 hours, raising over £1M for motor neurone disease (MND) research. This is a truly horrible condition and his teammate at Leeds Rhinos rugby team was diagnosed with this a few years ago.

As someone who finds just walking a few miles really hard, I am totally impressed. Well done.

See https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-league/59366038 .

472kHz WSPR RX with the Wellgood active loop

My Wellgood loop is tiny and no attempt has yet been made to optimise the size, position or orientation of the loop, which is just attached to the shack window with Blutak. 

Last night, 4 unique stations were spotted on 472kHz WSPR RX.  My impression is this is a few dBs down on the coax to my big wheel. Now, this could be activity, conditions, orientation, local noise, position etc. .

On 1840kHz (160m) FT8 it works well and is every bit as good.

10m FT8 QRP (Tuesday)

After a very brief period on QRP TX (2.5W), I am now RX only. The gear was turned on about 0830z. It is now 0836z and, so far, no spots given or received. It is a bit early.

UPDATE 1428z: 123 stations spotted on RX.  A brief period just now with me on QRP TX resulted in no spots!

Sunspots - Tuesday November 23rd 2021

Solar flux is 78 and the SSN 22 (again).  A=9 and K=2.

22 Nov 2021

472kHz WSPR RX with the Wellgood Loop active antenna

As an experiment I am on 472kHz WSPR RX using the Wellgood Loop. It will be interesting to see how this compares with the coax up to the big-wheel.

Home - NOT amateur radio

Even though I have lived away from the area for far longer than I lived there, I still think of the South Hams in Devon as "home".  I am sure lots will have changed. This photo shows people enjoying the sea near Salcombe, Devon, UK. 


This is the radio that preceded the IC-705. I sold mine many years ago to a friend in Cambridge and regret it. If you are after a basic HF/6m 10W radio, then you would be hard pressed to do better. It is the same size as the IC-706 range, but hard to find these days. One advantage is the auto-ATU, which matched my long wire on all bands from 80m to 10m. It would probably have done 6m too!

See https://sites.google.com/view/g3xbm4/home/hf-mf-and-lf/commercial-rigs/icom-ic-703 .

Tomatoes - NOT amateur radio

My home grown tomatoes were successful this year and I shall definitely grow more next year.  The position was in the sun, but sheltered. 

The same place will be used next year.

We have dark cold nights until then!

10m WSPR QRP (Wednesday)

As my 10m antenna is free, I am on 10m WSPR with my 500mW W5OLF beacon. At 1316z, 3 stations spotted with the furthermost EA8BFK (2880km).

UPDATE 1428z:  Still just the same 3 stations spotting me!

UPDATE  1842z:  Still just those 3 stations spotting me. QRT soon.

6m FT8 (Wednesday)

At about 1000z, I turned on my 6m FT8 running to 2.5W to the V2000 vertical antenna. I was very briefly on TX getting a couple of G spots. On RX 5 spots (mostly Gs) with the furthermost LB2WD (868km).

UPDATE 1840z:  6 spots of stations all day.  Apart from the station in Norway, all were Gs. QRT soon.

Autumn splendour - NOT amateur radio

This was the view out of my son's window earlier. 

472kHz WSPR RX last evening and overnight

18 stations spotted, which is the best yet this season. Furthermost was again OH1LSQ (1733km). Antenna is still the coax to my 2m big-wheel tuned with the ferrite rod ATU on the bench. Earth was just the mains. May try again tonight with the Wellgood active loop.

What is the best QRP transceiver ever?

Many of us enjoy the challenge of getting the most from the least. Some define this as the fewest number of parts or the lowest cost.

What do you reckon is/was the best QRP radio design ever? Tell us all what you think and why, and leave some links if possible.

Most designs are compromises. Ideally, I am looking for a rig that really holds its own on TX and RX. As an example, the Pixie and Micro80 had dreadful receivers. I am wondering if anyone has come up with a rig with a decent receiver?

Sunspots - Monday November 22nd 2021

 Solar flux is 79 and the SSN 22.  A=12 and K=3.

21 Nov 2021

472kHz (630m) WSPR RX

After dark, I switched to 472kHz WSPR RX using the coax up to my 2m big-wheel antenna via a ferrite rod ATU and mains earth. It is now 1841z and, so far, 5 unique stations spotted with the furthermost OH1LSQ (1733km). It may be a stupid antenna, but it works!

FY5KE - WSPR pirate?

When I go on 10m WSPR, I am frequently spotted by FY5KE. There was a QRZ.com message earlier in the year to say there had been no FT8 activity so far and if you worked FY5KE on FT8, this would have been a pirate. There was nothing said about WSPR.

The reports I get are usually good, which makes me a bit suspicious.

Is this WSPR monitor genuine?


 As the 10m antenna was free, I decided to go on 10m WSPR TX using the 500mW W5OLF 10m WSPR beacon. Just 3 spots of me (2 EA8s and 1 local G). So far, "the usuals".

6m FT8 (Sunday)?

 After lunch, I may switch to 6m FT8. There is far less activity on 6m at this time of year and most spots are likely to be UK stations probably by tropo or aircraft. I can only use the V2000 vertical on 6m. 

If I go on 6m FT8, I shall go on 10m WSPR TX (500mW) as the 10m antenna will be free.

UPDATE 1440z:  Turned on after lunch. Just 3 Gs spotted on RX and spots of me on TX by 1 G. No Es obvious.

UPDATE 1652z:  5 Gs spotted on 6m FT8 RX this afternoon.

Covid-19 in Singapore - NOT amateur radio

 Whilst I fully appreciate that some cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons, I think everyone else has a duty to themselves and to others to get vaccinated. It is only by vaccination that this pandemic will be ended.

As I understand it, in Singapore, those not vaccinated must pay for their own Covid-19 treatment.This seems draconian, but may make those wavering think again and make Singapore safer for all. 

This is a global pandemic and we all have to do our bit. Side effects from the jabs are very very rare and getting Covid-19 can be so much worse. The jab itself is quick and painless and over in seconds. To be honest, I did not feel a thing!

Our son's cat - NOT amateur radio

As my son is away this weekend, I am popping down to feed his playful cat. 

Our view - NOT amateur radio

This is our view at breakfast. The flowers are orchids. 

10m FT8 RX (Sunday)

My gear was turned on at 0752z.  So far 24 stations spotted with the furthermost HS2KYA (9693km).

UPDATE 1006z :  122 stations spotted on RX with 4 in Australia.

UPDATE 1144z : 288 stations spotted on RX. 10m is becoming too easy again. With FT8 it is even easier.  I seem to remember it became too easy in the last solar cycle. I must look for a new challenge that I can manage. 

472kHz (630m) WSPR RX

Once it got dark yesterday evening I QSYed to 472kHz WSPR RX using the coax to my 2m big-wheel via a ferrite rod ATU. In all 16 stations were spotted with the furthermost being EA4GHB (1300km).

Amaryllis - NOT amateur radio

Every year about now my wife plants an amaryllis bulb. Often we have several staggered. They grow at a phenomenal rate and give us huge pleasure. The photo shows ours at the moment and in about 6 weeks it will be tall with big flowers. 

8m USA permits

Already 7 stations in the USA have received experimental permits to operate at 8m. Come the next main Es season we could see even more approved and on the air. 

I do hope they all operate FT8 and within a single RX window for them all. This will make monitoring so much easier. 

In the last Es season the first USA station approved was copied in the UK. With 7 operational, things (and chances) can only get better. All that would be needed is a wire dipole and WSJT-X tuned so all the USA stations come in on FT8. Just leave the RX on and see what pops up. Of course, FT8 with a shared allocation would be good for all beacons, not just at 8m. This way, all beacons within the particular FT8 "window" could be monitored 24/7.

It is just possible that the F2 MUF limit could peak briefly such that distant stations on 8m could be copied. All this is new and exciting. We just do not know.

All the USA stations have been given permits in the ISM band. In the future, this could be a most interesting amateur allocation. Never mind transatlantic: they are going to have great fun in the next main Es season. There is a small Es peak around New Year. I wonder if there will be some Es within the USA at the turn of the year?

See https://ei7gl.blogspot.com/ .  On John's blog there are more details about these USA stations.

UPDATE 0650z:  I gather the first experimental licence has been issued in Canada to a VE7. 

Sunspots - Sunday November 21st 2021

Solar flux is 80 and the SSN 22.   A=10 and K=3. 

20 Nov 2021

472kHz WSPR RX (Saturday)

Using the coax up to my 2m big-wheel antenna via a ferrite rod ATU and the mains earth, I am monitoring 472kHz WSPR this evening. So far,  5 unique stations already spotted with the furthermost DB8BG (498km).

UPDATE 2137z:  9 unique stations spotted this evening on 472Hz WSPR.

Pampas grass - NOT amateur radio

Our neighbour's pampas grass looks splendid at the moment. 

Facebook memory - NOT amateur radio

I hate wars. Nonetheless I look back on my dad's WW2 service with amazement. This dates from 2014 when we went to a talk on the Pathfinders. 

10m FT8 RX (Saturday)

My system was turned on at 0901z. So far (at 0952z) 69 stations spotted on 10m FT8 RX. The furthermost is 4F3BZ (10632km) in the Philippines. 10m is definitely coming to life again.

UPDATE 1400z: 213 stations spotted on 10m FT8 RX so far today.

UPDATE 1520z:  219 stations spotted with the furthermost VK6BMA (14443km) in Western Australia. 

UPDATE 1810z:  QRT.

472kHz WSPR RX last evening

Last evening, I was on 472kHz WSPR RX. In all, 17 stations were spotted. I was using the coax to my 2m big-wheel as the antenna with a mains earth. 

The birds - NOT amateur radio

Starlings gather on the sails on the windmill next door. 

They do not roost here, but seem to gather here then fly off to their roost. 

They remind me of Hitchcock's film "The Birds".

Sunspots - Saturday November 20th 2021

 Solar flux is 79 and the SSN 22. A=5 and K=1.

19 Nov 2021

472kHz WSPR RX

As 10m FT8 seems to have closed for me, I have QSYed to 472kHz WSPR RX with the coax up to the 2m big-wheel and the mains earth. So far (after about 10 minutes) 3 stations have been spotted with the furthermost DF1VB (506km).

UPDATE 2159z:  So far this evening, 13 unique stations spotted with the furthermost IN3EAR (1069km) .

Mill leat - NOT amateur radio

The mill leat at nearby Anglesey Abbey is usually a good place to photograph. This was especially true earlier this week with the autumn colours. My wife took this photo.

Floodlights - NOT amateur radio

At night, our local church is floodlit. We walk this way once a month on the way to our local History Society meetings in the village. These are well attended. Last time they had a full house and not enough chairs!

10m FT8 RX (Friday)

 Today, I am on 10m FT8 RX. My gear was turned on at 0844z. Very quiet so far.

UPDATE 0908z:  Just 2 spots so far 1 G and 1 PA. Probably tropo or aircraft.

UPDATE 2137z:  Just 62 spots all day. Nothing at all from the Americas. I was suspicious and wondered whether my PC had reset or the internet was off. I don't think this was the case. It could have been at their end.

472kHz (630m) WSPR yesterday evening

For a few hours yesterday evening I went on 472kHz WSPR RX. 10 unique stations were spotted using the coax up to my 2m Big-wheel antenna and the mains earth.