Thanks to all for the QSOs…I’m still tallying my rain dampened log sheets but it looks like I had >150 QSOs including 48 S2Ss (however some of these were duplicates with different calls or same call on different bands). I’ll do an accurate tally later.
My antennas were:
#1 - 44’ doublet about 25’ up on the summit. #2 - EFHW.
I previously tested these antennas on 20 April from W4C/WP-012 with both N1EU and G4ELZ reporting about 3 dB difference in favor of the doublet, which seemed about right. Yesterday my second QSO at 1403z (before the QRPTTF began) was with CT1BQH on 15m. Carlos is a good CW op and had a good signal so I asked him for a comparison. He reported the doublet was “#1 much better, almost no copy on #2”. I thought this was surprising at the time. This was the only actual TX test I did during the day.
I switched on receive many times during the day to both EU and NA and the EFHW almost always sounded dead (i.e. like an attenuator) compared to the doublet. It was such a great difference that I completely changed out the EFHW (wire, matchbox and feedline) to make sure it wasn’t a problem with the antenna). On the drive home I was still very puzzled by the behavior and began to suspect an internal problem in the Elecraft K2.
I just did a check of the ANT1/ANT2 operation using an XG3 on 14 MHz fed into the ANT1/ANT2 ports. Strangely enough the ANT2 port is showing very slightly more sensitivity! So the only thing that remains is some sort of propagation effect…either takeoff angles or polarization. One other possibility is antenna interaction but the EFHW was mounted directly perpendicular to the doublet which should minimize interaction (counter-intuitive but correct…see below).
“3.) A dipole and a vertical have minimum coupling when the vertical is centered on and directly broadside to the dipole. Coupling to a vertical actually increases off the dipole ends. If we want best isolation, we should not install a dipole or horizontal antenna with horizontal antenna ends toward the vertical.”
Has anyone ever experienced anything like this? I know there are polarization effects on 160m due to proximity to the electron gyro-frequency but I’ve never seen anything like this on HF.
73, Bill W4ZV
P.S. Did anyone else work HB9DST/P yesterday? He was extremely weak on 15m and I don’t think he was on a SOTA summit but curious whether I missed his reference (don’t think he gave one that I could copy).
The 44’ doublet was oriented NE/SW and about 25’ above the summit. The first EFHW was about 20’ to the SW side of the doublet and perfectly vertical. When I erected the second EFHW, I sloped the base toward my operating position (base toward NE) so that a shorter spare cable would reach the matchbox. It should have favored slightly higher takeoff angles to the NE, but I really didn’t notice much difference.
The only major problem I had with the doublet was with Pacific NW stations which were in the null off the ends of the doublet. I never could get KH2TJ’s attention on 15m with many calls at different times but Todd later answered a CQ on 20…go figure. I never heard NS7P at all and most Western stations were weak. I called KI0G in Colorado many many times with no response, and Bob normally hears well.
I do recall a few times when the EFHW was equal to the doublet, but unfortunately didn’t keep any notes.
Regarding sounding dead as a door knob, the band noise must have dropped 10-15 dB when I would switch to the EFHW…it was VERY noticeable…not just a few dB.
In reply to W4ZV:
I had very similar doublet and orientation and also didn’t get much out of the Pac NW or Calif. I did work NS7P (OR) and N7KE (WA) but they were weak. VE7CV was loud but I’m sure he was QRO. And that’s it from those regions.
Considering what you did to the previous QRPTTF top scores, I think they’re going to ban you for life
yes, condx also very poor on my side in south-dl on dm/bw-228. i worked with two antennas, my vertical and later with a 42mtr endfeeded elhw antenna horizontal 2 mtrs away from the cliffs and abt. 8-10mtr high in the trees. good to have this horizontal antenna, because many stations who was just audible from na produces better,workable signals then. for me the horizontal antenna was the winner. but in the other direction to vk,ja the signals was better on vertical. had a rainy day with a few breaks in rain,so i had done a few nice dx. but condx was very low and most signals are weak. only east coast stateside was better workable. made many contacts to us including 7 s2s stateside, one s2s to g/sp-015 and one to vk/se-001. think the 3 farest away was vk5cz, ns0ta on wo/fr-063 and aa5ck on w5o/qa21. but all qsoÂ´s was hard work, very weak and sometimes strong qsb. feels like in old vhf contest days i worked also hard on some contacts. by the way, the noise floor on the horizontal antenna was sometimes much better. goog to have fine phone net on the summit so i noticed a short time better condx to zl2ham with abt. 20db http://www.flickr.com/photos/36645961@N00/8688666365/in/photostream
by doing test with switching antennas, in the same time i noticed vk5cz vk5/se-001 alerted on 20m cw. so i stayed about 20-30min on the spotted qrg and hope for a short better opening. and then i hear him with abt. 339/319 with vy qsb…called him and get him fine.thats possible for s2s with vk i seen weeks before, as pa0skp sake also worked s2s with him.
so i had a nice but rainy time on the summit ( think you have to be a bit crazy to do this in this wx ) , but every qso is worth it.
one problem i have with my ultra wet log paper, i worked kb1nfb on a summit. in my log i can only read w1/cr-00?..mhhhh. s2s is s2s, but i need the summit to log that qso…some photos on my flickr side
hope to see you again from the summits,
p.s. sorry for not come on 30 and 40m, wx was to bad to handle a little possible pile up and writing log then…
Barry, we’ve worked several times in the past but unfortunately, I never heard you at all yesterday.
My normal antenna is an 88’ doublet but the never before activated peak I picked yesterday prevented me from deploying the doublet and I had to fall back to a backup 14mhz EFHW. The antenna change appeared to favor more stations on the east coast than the regular west coast and central US guys I normally see. Having read Bill’s post, I have to wonder if something else was going on.
As for Bill, W4ZV, we worked twice. Once before the TTF and once during the TTF. Both times Bill was 559 but after reading his posting here, I am unsure what antenna he was on. Bill, you were the strongest received NC station in my logbook. I wonder if you worked any other stations from Arizona?
Unfortunately with me not being able to get on the lower bands, I couldn’t work any of the local guys.
Regardless, I had a blast for my first QRPTTF and handed out many SOTA points to lots of new callsigns.
Special thanks to W4ZV, NE1SJ, W7TAO K7ATN and NS7P for the S2S contacts.
In reply to N5XL:
have tried to work many of mid/west us stations and lsn many times on the posted qrgÂ´g …but nothing here in south dl yesterday. condx very poor yesterday …sri. maybe next time agn.
unfortunately, I never heard you at all yesterday.
Dave, every time I saw you spotted on SOTAwatch I tuned for you but I never had good enough readability to work you. The propagation seemed to stop at NM in your direction. Couldn’t hear any of the California stations either.
Likewise, I listen for you almost every time you are on a summit. So far, our one contact last week has been the only one.
Its very difficult for those of us in the desert southwest USA (AZ, NM) to work QRP into DL and conditions have to be just right. I’ve lost count of the many early mornings I’ve spent listening for your signal. I’ll keep trying to add to the QSO count!
Any “claimed scores” for the event guys? My CW sheet totals 4365 points, while on SSB I got just 189 points.
It would be cool if those scoresheets were a website that actually calculates your score after entering your logs! Cool, but not essential.
Klaus - I was pleased that we got the QSO for the 20m CW S2S. Most times I checked for you, you were inaudible. But as condx started to improve, your signal became clear.
Condx were generally disappointing, and I would have hoped for many more USA S2S QSOs in my logbook, and more USA TTF stations overall. However, I shouldn’t really complain at working 25 North American stations with my 5 watts SOTA station, or the DX from YV, UK and EA9. I would have loved to have worked one of those JA stations though - there was several of them up around 14.050 to 14.060 later on the Saturday evening, and even later there was a clear VU2 station calling.
Anyway, International SOTA Weekend next weekend, so opportunity for another batch of intercontinental S2S QSOs hopefully.
As for Bill, W4ZV, we worked twice. Once before the TTF and once
during the TTF. Both times Bill was 559 but after reading his posting
here, I am unsure what antenna he was on. Bill, you were the
strongest received NC station in my logbook. I wonder if you worked
any other stations from Arizona?
Dave I was using the doublet for transmit 99% of the time. You were the only AZ station I heard. I was mostly either chasing new summit spots or CQing, mainly looking for Europe. My goal for this event was to maximize unique S2Ss and not necessarily running up a QRPTTF score. I didn’t do much tuning around unless I was chasing a summit spot. There could have been other AZ stations active but I wouldn’t have heard them unless they answered my CQs.
I just got back from a weekend trip for the annual Helvetia26 contest. I did take time to activate nearby HB/SH-002 for QRPTTF. Thanks for your patience in digging my signal out of he noise level! Running an ATS-4, 11.4V into an AlexLoop. That was the only EU-NA S2S I was able to make on any bands. Conditions were pretty poor.
“Klaus - I was pleased that we got the QSO for the 20m CW S2S. Most times I checked for you, you were inaudible. But as condx started to improve, your signal became clear.”
iÂ´m also checked the frequencys you are spottet. but had no copy off your signal at this earlier times.iÂ´m also called a few cq then on abt. 14.015 and get answers from 3 jaÂ´s who wanted a number from me for contest.sometimes it was easier to find a free spot in the lower part off the 20m band.
thanks for the second s2s to sp-015 and hope we can do a third next time
maybe on another band or mode…
Thanks to all for the QSOs…I’m still tallying my rain dampened log
sheets but it looks like I had >150 QSOs including 48 S2Ss (however
some of these were duplicates with different calls or same call on
different bands). I’ll do an accurate tally later.