cw on 2 meters

Started by rah, December 31, 2016, 08:55:50 pm

Previous topic - Next topic

rah

I live in a fairly rural area of western Montana and realize there are only about a dozen fellow hams in the immediate area. 
I recently configured my Buddipole for 2 meter verticle and began searching for signals in the 144.05 to 144.10 CW area.
After hearing nothing for several weeks, I began throwing CQ out in an effort to make a contact.  My initial thought was to find someone
to work with me on my slow CW skills locally.  After hearing nothing, I'm wondering if this is a mode on 2 meters seldom used.  Has
anyone here had any luck with CW on 2 meters?
Yaesu FT-897
LDG AT-200Pro II
Icom IC-91A

Rescue9

I've never had any luck with cw on 2m.

Quietguy

Quote from: rah on December 31, 2016, 08:55:50 pmI recently configured my Buddipole for 2 meter verticle and began searching for signals in the 144.05 to 144.10 CW area.


I haven't tried it, but I believe most CW and SSB work on 2 meters uses horizontally polarized antennas rather than vertical as is customary with repeaters.  If that holds true in your area you are giving up a lot by using a vertical antenna, try a horizontal configuration.

Wally

gil

I second Wally here. You lose a LOT by using a vertical. Get a torch and bend that mast 90 degrees ;-)

Gil

rah

Well, I'm deeply embarrassed.  Time to get back to the basics.
Horizontal, I should have known that. Thanks, guys.
Yaesu FT-897
LDG AT-200Pro II
Icom IC-91A

KK0G

As others have already replied; you must be horizontally polarized, you are attenuating most of the extremely weak signal by being cross polarized. They call VHF/UHF CW and SSB weak signal for a reason, it truly is weak, don't expect to hear much on a dipole, go for a directional gain antenna mounted very high and in the clear - remember, it's line of sight on VHF. High quality feedline with a low loss at VHF is another requirement. Don't worry though, you made the same wrong assumptions that many hams before you have made, VHF weak signal is nothing at all like HF, it has to be approached differently.
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin

KK0G

rah

Roger that, KK0G.  I'm going to have to rethink my entire setup.
Thanks for all the good advice, guys.
Yaesu FT-897
LDG AT-200Pro II
Icom IC-91A

gil

A simple antenna to make would be a Moxon. Not as much gain as a Yagi-Uda but very simple...

Gil

lewisp

Just saw this thread.
I have been having good luck doing 2 meter digital and CW through my comet vertical, to my friend about 25 miles away over rough terrain using a J-pole 25' up, here in Idaho. He's impossible to get with FM simplex, but SSB seems to just laser through no problem. Even sending forms and such through FLDIGI using MFSK/FLAMP works surprisingly well. Maybe we are just lucky?

Quietguy

Quote from: lewisp on January 06, 2018, 07:59:08 pm
I have been having good luck doing 2 meter digital and CW through my comet vertical, to my friend about 25 miles away over rough terrain using a J-pole 25' up, here in Idaho.
[snip]
Maybe we are just lucky?

No, you are both using vertical antennas so you don't see the mismatch.  The problem comes about when the antennas at each end are different - when one is horizontal and one is vertical.  That problem isn't present when both antennas have the same orientation. 

Historically, horizontally polarized antennas were preferred over vertical because they are quieter - most noise tends to be vertically polarized.  That's why weak signal operators tend to use horizontal polarization.  But when repeaters became common and vertical antennas were installed on vehicles, vertical became the polarization of choice for VHF/UHF FM.  Vertical antennas are much more convenient than horizontal to mount on a vehicle.  But that choice didn't carry over to weak signal work, so while you and your buddy are fine talking to each other you both will see significant losses if you try to contact weak signal stations with the more traditional horizontal polarization.

Wally