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Poor band conditions

I was wondering if i am the only one suffering from very poor band conditions since about last wednesday vhf,uhf and even hf seem to have just a very high noise level it is very inconsiderate after all im trying to play radio best 73s DAVE M3XIE

In reply to M3XIE-1:
I can’t hear SOTA activators in e.g. Belgium and Germany on 40m - lost in the noise - that would normally be an easy copy with the FT-101ZD and dipole. Today I’m regretting lack of progress in putting up the large horizontal loop antenna around the perimeter of the back garden. There’ll be other better days Dave

73
David MR0YDH

In reply to M3XIE-1:

Struggled a bit on friday fromGW/SW-026 with a SOTA MFD and FT-817ND could hardly hear some stations in the midlands and Devon was a no-no! I know there were some stations wanting to work me from the South West but I couldn’t hear them at all. Managed to work a station in South London though!

I thought it was my antenna which chose to become un-glued.

Tony

Yeah, I’ve made very few contacts this week. On forty metres the propagation seems to have been both variable and directional. I’ve heard non-exchanges where I could hear both parties but they clearly couldn’t hear each other.

What’s the Sun doing?

In reply to M3XIE-1:
Well yesterday I had my usual 4 QSOs on 40m and a couple on 30m, mainly with European stations. Signals normal, just worked DL4FDM/P on 40m, good signals and lowish noise. You have to remember though that on 40m the critical frequency often drops below this band and you won’t be able to work inter-G - it is currently around 5.5MHz, see http://www.spacew.com/www/fof2.html

Solar flux has dropped a bit from what it was a couple of weeks ago, which means the MUF and hence critical frequency are lower. Worked ST2AR on 17m yesterday so there is not that much wrong with conditions.

73 Dave G3YMC

In reply to G3YMC:
Thanks, I’ve bookmarked that map as it looks like it could be useful. I’m wondering what it was looking like earlier in the week. Yesterday and today have been better, propagation-wise, on forty, but the pile-ups have also been much much busier.

73, Rick M0LEP

In reply to M3XIE-1:

I was activating on Saturday and Sunday. Conditions on Saturday were terrible, but mainly because of nearby thunderstorms. I made less than the usual number of contacts on shortwave. Sunday morning was much better, but still not what it used to be. I wonder if SOTA day caused so many activations that chasers were divided into many more pile-ups or if HF-conds were poor in general.

73 Heinz, OE5EEP/P

In reply to M3XIE-1:

According to www.spaceweather.com:

Geomagnetic Storm: A solar wind stream hit Earth’s magnetic field during the early hours of April 30th, sparking a high-latitude geomagnetic storm.

This phenomenon often disturbs propagation: add in the high static levels associated with thunderstorms the last few days and you get less than satisfactory band conditions!

73

Brian GR8ADD

In reply to G8ADD:
I blame SID :slight_smile:

Roger GR4OWG

In reply to G4OWG:

From the noises on the bands recently I would guess you mean “Hissing Sid”!

73

Brian GR8ADD

In reply to G8ADD:

No vicious :wink:
Bands are just a bit different can’t be all bad just heard a 9A working NE1SJ/P but I can’t hear him :frowning:
Earlier on there was a sporadic-E opening between Southern UK and Italy on 6m.
Things are bubbling on Aurora watch as well - fingers crossed

Roger GR4OWG

In reply to G8ADD:
http://aurorawatch.lancs.ac.uk/
Now yellow alert (minor geomagnetic activity)http://aurorawatch.lancs.ac.uk/alerts

Roger GR4ÓWG

In reply to G4OWG:

In reply to G8ADD:

Earlier on there was a sporadic-E opening between Southern UK and

Italy on 6m.

Roger GR4OWG

Mortifying. I kept a watch on 6 most of the day - it sounded like it was going to open up but nothing was heard here. :frowning:

73

Brian GR8ADD

In reply to G8ADD:

I’m intrigued; what does a band that sounds like it is going to open sound like?

73

Richard
G3CWI

In reply to G3CWI:

The band noise level rises and a plethora of weak carriers and funny noises appears. Today the band was very quiet in the morning and became noisy at lunch time, it has now got a lot quieter but has not returned to its low noise state. I have no explanation of why the noise changes but it seems a pretty reliable warning for me. Much the same thing happens on 2m when the Es reaches that high: noise increase, odd carriers and so on, then voices muttering in the noise and finally strong DX. Have you noticed this?

73

Brian GR8ADD

PS I see on the UKSMG site there is a warning for mid latitude Aurora, nothing audible here as yet.

then voices muttering in the noise
and finally strong DX. Have you noticed this?

Not so far. I would be inclined to seek professional help if I was beginning to hear voices…

73

Richard
G3CWI

In reply to G3CWI:

Not so far. I would be inclined to seek professional help if I was
beginning to hear voices…

:-)) I’m familiar with the phenomenon of “ghost voices” in white noise!

We have Es on 6 right now, a path is open to Iberia.

73

Brian GR8ADD

In reply to G8ADD:

We have Es on 6 right now, a path is open to Iberia.

I feel guilty for not getting excited about what could be termed “flat band 6m Es”. No, it’s not a contradiction in terms but describes the everyday 6m openings you get. It’s the more exotic stuff that suprises me or when you hear Es in places you don’t expect. Like on holiday several years ago in late June, driving past Stac Pollaidh and the car radio was filled with French or Italian stations. Most of which were so strong they were in noisefree stereo and their RDS decoded.

Now if it was OX/TF/OY/JX or places in Africa or the Middle East then it gets exciting. And all Es on 2m is exciting.

And Brian, I know what you mean about the noise sounding different. But I think it’s more to do with noting conditions (wx for tropo, or Es on other bands) makes you think the noise sounds different because you expect something to happen. When it does you’re convinced the noise did sound different before the opening.

Andy
MR0FMF

In reply to MM0FMF:

The first openings of the season are always exciting for me, nice to say hallo to the regulars that I haven’t heard for several months, by the middle of the month I will be more picky! I have already got nearly everything that you can get by single-hop although there are squares to be filled in when the skip is very short: but then I am usually looking for two to open! Mind you, I keep missing OY, that one will be worth a dram!

I’m not convinced by your explanation, I hear the enhanced noise etc even when no actual opening ensues, checking the cluster shows then that there was an opening further south. Its a difference that shows up on the S-meter.

73

Brian GR8ADD

In reply to M3XIE-1:

Awful band conditions today… Very disappointing.

20 meter dipole and 100 watts mountain top portable and people could barely hear me. only managed a handful of contacts… enough to count, but really wanted to be heard today thus carrying the heavy gear and running 100 watts.

-K2FR