For those of you who have the WRC-15 allocation on 60m, may I ask you to consider CW activation on frequencies that overlap with the UK sub-bands (unless of course you have a good reason not to). I’ve recently listened to SOTA activators calling CQ on 5354.0 and it’s frustrating knowing that I can’t chase them (as that frequency is on the edge of a UK sub-band). And legally I can’t reply to ask them to QSY up a bit.
I’ve heard EU activators on 5355.0 and I activate on 5354.5 - I know I can usually get UK chasers in the UK sub-band around 5262 (thank you guys!) but that’s not fair on EU chasers.
It would be great if there were a SOTA CW centre of activity on 60m – perhaps it might encourage more SOTA activity on that band. Welcome your thoughts.
Can I make the same point as Andy but with regard to SSB activations? The UK allocations include part of the phone section of the WRC-15 allocation, and I have been fortunate enough to work a couple of continental SSB activations in the overlap. For reference, the UK phone overlap is 5358 - 5362 MHz.
With regard to the idea of a SOTA CW centre of activity on 60m, it is MT policy that there are no “official” SOTA frequencies but some have become established by popular use, hopefully this will happen with 60m.
The 60m “bandlets” used in the UK are a problem for inter-communication to countries who have the WRC15 band allocations. I was about to jump in and say that the overlap frequencies I look to are 5354/5 and 5362/3. This coming for an SSB operator, operating on USB, but of course a CW carrier sits exactly on the frequency not above it as an USB signal does. So your comment about needing to be probably at least 500 Hz above 5354 or 5362 is spot-on Andy (G8CPZ). How about CW on 5454.5 or 5362.5 and SSB(USB) on 5355 or 5363? I THINK these will be within bandplan and more importantly within band for UK and WRC15 stations.
There is also an issue with the current RSGB bandplan for 60m, ( https://www.thersgb.org/services/bandplans/files/assets/basic-html/page-9.html# ) where it specifies " 5,362-5,370 kHz- Digital mode activity in the UK " although this is in one of the overlap areas with WRC15 band users - error - a UK only activity section covering over the International co-allocated section of the band - OOOPS! - there is a note (4) where it says try to avoid WRC15 frequencies, but the definition is in the band plan (this version was created after the WRC15 agreement), when it could have started the UK only digital section a couple of Kcs higher and avoided the problem!
It seems the UK isn’t likely to adopt the WRC-15 allocation anytime soon. It’s not even up to the UK licensing authority (Ofcom) to decide. The UK Ministry of Defence is the primary user of that part of the spectrum and they have given up a sizeable portion to amateurs (albeit not in one single band) which is generous compare to the WRC-15 allocation.
My point is, we already have overlapping band/sub-bands, so we just need to choose shared frequencies to encourage more chasers and activators. As for which frequencies? In my humble opinion, the two I mentioned (or a small range in that region). They are in the ‘all modes’ section of the WRC-15 band plan.
A mute point - are we actually licensed to make contact with stations on the frequencies we are not licensed for? This used to be an issue years ago when Class B licensees worked split to an HF band. I for one got a severe written reprimand from the powers that be. Maybe it is far more chilled nowadays, but the point is still worth considering.
That’s a shame Andy - I think the US has similar problems with getting the WRC15 band allocated. What needs to be avoided is what happened in Holland, they had 100W PEP on their old frequencies and with the adoption they went down to just 15KHz and 15w EIRP!
So - Frequencies - let me echo what I said above and suggest the following as guideline frequencies for UK <-> Continent QSOs for SOTA
CW - 5354.5 kHz or 5362.5 kHz - whichever is free.
SSB (USB) - 5355 kHz or 5363 kHz - whichever is free.
(Narrow) Digital modes - use the WRC weak signal narrow mode frequencies section 5366 - 5366.5 KHz
5358 - 5362 kHz is most definitely NOT allocated to UK amateurs. It is a gap between two of the UK bandlets. (I assume you meant kHz and not MHz. There is no 5358 MHz amateur band.)
The WRC-15 allocation outside of the UK is 5351.5 - 5366.5 kHz. Within this allocation, UK amateurs would be permitted to operate between 5354 and 5358 kHz (normally reserved for CW and data), and also between 5362 and 5366.5 kHz (only enough room for one SSB QSO in this sector).
Exactly! This happened in Spain and a few other countries too. We certainly do not want to campaign for the WRC-15 band to become the standard in the UK and risk losing our existing privileges. We are FAR better off with what we currently have.
Please do NOT use 5355 kHz for SSB. In the UK, almost all activity on JT65 and FT8 digital modes takes place between 5356 and 5358 kHz, including intercontinental traffic. I have never heard a digital signal between 5366 and 5366.5 kHz.
For over 50 years, it has been standard, accepted practice in the UK (and the rest of Europe) to use split frequency to work stations in North America who are transmitting above 3.8 MHz or above the top edge of our 7 MHz band (currently 7.2 MHz). I am not aware that the licensing authority has ever raised any objection. The issue about Class B licensees was a special case.
I was in a hurry to be elsewhere and miscopied from a crowded scratch pad! Sorry for any confusion.
The UK bandlets overlapping the WRC-15 band are 5.354 - 5.358 and 5.362 - 5.3745. The gaps between UK bandlets presumably are for channels still used by the MoD, so it seems possible that UK military stations might still appear in the WRC-15 band between 5.358 and 5.362.
I will take note of this frequencies to be used in future activations.
Hopefully, next friday, I will activate a summit in the South Portugal (wx contingent).
We have access to WRC-15 band, 15W EIRP (would like to see how ANACOM is going to measure the EXACT isotropic radiated power…). Anyway, authorization is granted case-by-case and only to category A or 1 (yes, we have both…).