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Author Topic: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!  (Read 5030 times)

John Galt

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First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« on: November 02, 2013, 05:45:07 AM »
As I wrote in my introductory post, Iím very new to ham and Iím on the steep end of the learning curve (or is that the deep end?).  So right now, Iíve got pretty limited knowledge and tools. 

Fast forward to last weekend I decided to go out to the ranch to do some chores, hunting, chillaxing etc.  I threw the Yaesu FT-8900 in the truck and off I went.  I hadnít heard much on 10 meter previously but it was pretty lively that weekend.  Anyhow, listening to 29.600, a CQ comes in pretty strong.  At that point, I have yet to use the PTT button.  Even back in the big city listening to 2m and 70cm with the HT, I havenít done anything but listen and learn. 

So I answer this station from my place outside BFE.  I actually talked to him briefly!  He never could pick up my call sign because my signal was weak.  Iíve got a Diamond CR-8900 on my truck and my mobile rig  only puts out 50 watts max.  Of course, I donít have internet or much else for that matter for comms out in the sticks so I had to wait to get back to town to look him up.   Enschede, Netherlands!!  By the German border.  5500 miles.  Holy crap!  This stuff works!   
« Last Edit: November 02, 2013, 05:52:38 AM by John Galt »

RadioRay

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2013, 04:35:52 PM »
Congratulations Mr. Gault!

USA to Europe from the mobile makes your first HF contact especially memorable!


73 de RadioRay ..._ ._
"When we cannot do the good we would, we must be ready to do the good we can."  ~ Matthew Henry

RichardSinFWTX

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2013, 07:40:37 PM »
Wow!  The Netherlands?!  Good job, man!  I caught a guy who said he was from Portugal on my FT-8900 last year.

Ever listen in on the W5DFW 10m repeater?  give me a shout sometime and we can give it a shot!

Archangel320420

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2013, 09:34:00 PM »
When you can manage to work me, NN0AA, then you will have the biggest thrill amateur radio has to offer. Ask KK0G.

 Seriously though, John. Good going.

John Galt

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2013, 12:49:28 PM »

Ever listen in on the W5DFW 10m repeater?  give me a shout sometime and we can give it a shot!

At the moment, I only set up the 8900 in the truck when I'm heading out to the ranch.  I've got the stuff on order to use it at the house.  Once I get 10m capability at the house (Htown area), we'll give it a shot!

John Galt

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2013, 12:53:27 PM »
When you can manage to work me, NN0AA, then you will have the biggest thrill amateur radio has to offer. Ask KK0G.

LOL.  I believe you!  At this point I can only hope to aspire to that level of achievement! 

That sounds great, though.  I need all the experience that I can get.  Once I get set up at the house or am out at the ranch, we will definitely need to give it a try.


RichardSinFWTX

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2013, 01:11:00 PM »
At the moment, I only set up the 8900 in the truck when I'm heading out to the ranch.  I've got the stuff on order to use it at the house.  Once I get 10m capability at the house (Htown area), we'll give it a shot!

I made my 8900 backpack portable.  The 857D that I'm about to buy is going to be part of my digital station-in-a-box.

John Galt

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2013, 03:20:59 PM »
At the moment, I only set up the 8900 in the truck when I'm heading out to the ranch.  I've got the stuff on order to use it at the house.  Once I get 10m capability at the house (Htown area), we'll give it a shot!

I made my 8900 backpack portable.  The 857D that I'm about to buy is going to be part of my digital station-in-a-box.
What do you use for an antenna?  Quad band or did you pick a single band for your backpack?

RichardSinFWTX

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2013, 03:35:18 PM »
I've actually got three different ones.  I've got a Opek HVT-400b, YoYo-Tenna (multiband) and a homebrew center-fed dipole that I built from a video I saw on YouTube.  Look on Youtube for a guy named USNERDOC.  He's a got a video about his 6m dipole that he built around an electrical junction box.  It's pretty slick, waaaaay easy to build and the best part, CHEAP!!

The Opek HVT-400B is a mobile one that I mount on camo poles for when I'm at my retreat location.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2013, 03:38:22 PM by KF5RHI »

IT Tech

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2014, 08:02:45 AM »
As I wrote in my introductory post, Iím very new to ham and Iím on the steep end of the learning curve (or is that the deep end?).  So right now, Iíve got pretty limited knowledge and tools. 

Fast forward to last weekend I decided to go out to the ranch to do some chores, hunting, chillaxing etc.  I threw the Yaesu FT-8900 in the truck and off I went.  I hadnít heard much on 10 meter previously but it was pretty lively that weekend.  Anyhow, listening to 29.600, a CQ comes in pretty strong.  At that point, I have yet to use the PTT button.  Even back in the big city listening to 2m and 70cm with the HT, I havenít done anything but listen and learn. 

So I answer this station from my place outside BFE.  I actually talked to him briefly!  He never could pick up my call sign because my signal was weak.  Iíve got a Diamond CR-8900 on my truck and my mobile rig  only puts out 50 watts max.  Of course, I donít have internet or much else for that matter for comms out in the sticks so I had to wait to get back to town to look him up.   Enschede, Netherlands!!  By the German border.  5500 miles.  Holy crap!  This stuff works!

Do you have a General Class License?

There is a 10 meter repeater near Dallas Tx that I can hear - in Pennsylvania when the band is open.

The reason why I asked if you have a General Class License is because a Technician does not have Privileges on 10 meters FM...

Even the CB'rs knows that the antenna needs to be almost 9 feet ( around 104 inches) long to work on 10 meters...

John Galt

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2014, 10:48:32 AM »
As I wrote in my introductory post, Iím very new to ham and Iím on the steep end of the learning curve (or is that the deep end?).  So right now, Iíve got pretty limited knowledge and tools. 

Fast forward to last weekend I decided to go out to the ranch to do some chores, hunting, chillaxing etc.  I threw the Yaesu FT-8900 in the truck and off I went.  I hadnít heard much on 10 meter previously but it was pretty lively that weekend.  Anyhow, listening to 29.600, a CQ comes in pretty strong.  At that point, I have yet to use the PTT button.  Even back in the big city listening to 2m and 70cm with the HT, I havenít done anything but listen and learn. 

So I answer this station from my place outside BFE.  I actually talked to him briefly!  He never could pick up my call sign because my signal was weak.  Iíve got a Diamond CR-8900 on my truck and my mobile rig  only puts out 50 watts max.  Of course, I donít have internet or much else for that matter for comms out in the sticks so I had to wait to get back to town to look him up.   Enschede, Netherlands!!  By the German border.  5500 miles.  Holy crap!  This stuff works!

Do you have a General Class License?

There is a 10 meter repeater near Dallas Tx that I can hear - in Pennsylvania when the band is open.

The reason why I asked if you have a General Class License is because a Technician does not have Privileges on 10 meters FM...

Even the CB'rs knows that the antenna needs to be almost 9 feet ( around 104 inches) long to work on 10 meters...

No, I have an Extra.
I have picked up the 10m repeater out of the Catskills but never heard a peep out of the Dallas or Houston repeaters.
I use a Diamond 8900 quadband antenna made for my Yaesu 8900 but it's nowhere near 9 feet.  Maybe the CB'rs ought to tell Diamond how to make an antenna.  Until then, I'll defer to their expertise.

IT Tech

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2014, 11:20:22 AM »
Sorry about that, I didn't know Diamond made an antenna like that.

In the shack I have a Diamond V2000 - which was designed for the 8900 - it does 6 meters and 2 meters and 70 cm, but will not do 10 meters.

In the mobile, I use the Larsen NMO 2/70 antenna with great results on 2 meters and 70 cm, but it will not tune up to the 6 meters FM band.

A baseloaded 10 / 11 meter antenna would probably help your cause in your mobile.
I have an old Shakespere mobile antenna with mag mount in the corner, but never tried to load it up on 10 meters or cut it to length, because truthfully, with Solar Cycle 24 being a bust, there isn't a lot on 10 meters other then the repeater I can hear down in Puerto Rico that has no activity.

Maybe you are too close to the Dallas 10 meter repeater, or maybe you don't have the PL programmed in correctly.  I know it has a PL on it.  Most 10 meter repeaters are just paper repeaters because when they break, the oldtimers that took care of them are either dead or doesn't care anymore because no one uses them - which is a shame.

There was a group of hams that I communicated with on a almost daily basis that lived in the Tampa Bay area of Florida that malingered around 28.415 MHz USB..
One night one of their gang that didn't know who I was,  was sitting in the Piggly Wiggly parking lot - waiting for his XYL to come out of the store.. I was talking to him and he got smart with me and said my signal was crappy.
He must have thought that I was one of the local operators.
When I told him that I was in Pennsylvania and just running 25 watts into the Solorcon A99 at 20' - his opinion of my set up changed considerably.
That person was using a K40 antenna on the trunk lid of his Cavalier ..

Sometimes radio is more about location then it is how much power you have or how tall your tower is or how big your beam antenna is.

KW4HKY

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Re: First Contact - Pretty Stoked!!
« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2014, 08:40:39 PM »
10 meter. All or nothing. When it's open it is awesome.