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Messages - gil

The QCX Mini should be released soon!
Licensing / Re: How many here are already licensed?
September 16, 2020, 08:53:02 am
Hello, you would only be purged if you didn't sign in for more than a year... So, did your grandson keep at it or did he push radio aside in his teenage years?


It is possible, though it won't be 100% reliability. I would use two antennas, a vertical and an inverted V. You would need to use different bands as well: 80 and 40m on the inverted V, and 20/30m half-wave end-fed verticals. Your maximum height would be 15m then, and you can use a Spiderbeam mast for that. You'd use 40/80m for evening/night and 20/30m for day comms. Do not expect to make contact every time, though in a few years the return of the solar cycle will help a great deal. As Scott mentions, using the JS8 digital mode would help a great deal, or for a much simpler solution: Morse code using CW! Output power isn't a major factor here, propagation is... I would be happy with 5W CW or 30W SSB. If you have good charge capabilities go with a 100W radio, but pick one with a low receive current draw. It can be done semi-reliably, even with a modest installation. I used to have daily chats with Ray (radioray) from Florida to Virginia using CW, and rarely did we not make contact, and that was using 5W, sometimes as low as 100mW.


SDR Radios / Re: Minion SDR
September 14, 2020, 04:53:12 am
Hi, I don' remember, but SSB does not give you a precise power measurement. Use CW to see your power output. Also, there is no practical difference between 5 or 7W... Nobody will ever notice the difference...

SDR Radios / Re: Minion SDR
September 07, 2020, 06:16:15 am
Hello, yes, I got 5 to 7W. I did not see an option to adjust power... Is your antenna resonant? Did you check SWR?

Welcome aboard Lee :-) you might want to look into 2m SSB. There are a lot of cheap 2m all-mode transceivers on Ebay... I have an old Icom IC-251 that works wonders :-)

Technical Corner / Re: MTR5B is not working with batteries
September 07, 2020, 06:12:47 am
Hello, I saw on another forum that you solved the issue?

Licensing / Re: Ham licensing in France
August 24, 2020, 08:18:35 am
Hello. I can only relate to what I did for my U.S. Extra license, which was to contact the ANFR, fill a form and get a French call-sign. It's free and takes a couple weeks. Now, I am not sure they will give you one from a Foundation license... I doubt it. You would be better off getting a full license and then asking for a French call-sign, or if your French is good enough, pass the French exam.

I never tested the HD1 but I do want one. Another good choice but without DMR is the Yaesu VX6, which can receive HF AM broadcast and the aviation band, along with a wide band of frequencies.

New To Radio / Re: CHIRP question
August 17, 2020, 05:53:32 am
Hello. I only set the TX CTCSS tone. You don't really need the RX tone except if there are interferences on the same frequency. I do not set the TSQL tone...
I can only recommend a full-keel boat :-)

Hello everyone :-)

Back to normal, almost, with a sailboat in port! Just to conclude, I found operating maritime mobile very difficult, and commercial radios completely inadequate for the marine environment, no surprise there... You simply can't have a radio in the cockpit, period. Either it will get sprayed with saltwater or be washed overboard, and the little RG-316 antenna cable isn't going to prevent that. You may fish it back but it will likely never work again. My Yaesu VX6 did well though, to monitor marine channel 16.
My solution will be to install a PRC-320 inside the cabin for voice comms and a 30m QCX for CW with extended key and headset cables to the cockpit. I will place those radios at mid-level in the cabin between bilge and roof. You always have to think of what would happen if the boat was, however briefly, upside-down. I also need to think of a means to receive messages while under-way, which may involve a Raspberry Pi and JS8Call, maybe Winlink.

I do not know if my salted Minion SDR will work again, and I better hurry troubleshooting it before more damage occurs...

Boat-wise, I have a long list of modifications and safety equipment to add. I just installed two new batteries... Solar panels will follow. I am looking at Solbian but it's very expensive; not this year probably. Right now I am setting it up for safe coastal cruising, with the objective of upgrading to an ocean-crossing vessel as time progresses. There is a lot of cosmetic work to do, inside and out.

Now let's resume our regular program ;-)

Thanks guys :-)

Thanks Ray and all of you guys for your support and atemps to contact me, much appreciated. I did make a few contacts. It will take some time to edit the video. Not as much radio as I hoped but you will see why... I am safe and sound at home, though exhausted. 40hrs at the helm in 7 Beaufort winds is something I did not think I could do. There was a few SAR operations those two nights, fortunately I wasn't the object of one. It is a constant psychological and physical battle to stay on the boat, not being thrown off and exert constant pressure and movement on the tiller. Legs, arms, core muscles, everything works constantly at max capacity. The boat was laid on its side twice and I was both times times thrown in the opposite stanchions, "launched" would be a better expression because I am pretty sure I was briefly airborne for an instant. Thanks to my safety harness! I could only use my electric auto-pilot for a few hours, as it could not cope with the conditions. But then, what other choice is there? To me staying home watching TV is more risky ;-) in the grand scheme of things...
Now I am catching up on sleep and recovering, which will take a couple days...
TTYL :-)