I performed the Konrad mod on the Sony XDR I have out here and it is a superb performer with a horizontal Triax FM5 in the clear beaming 150 degrees. I also have a vertical FM5 available at the press of a button – 101.6 MHz in Horizontal brings in France Bleu Roussillon while switching to vertical you have RTL. Interesting to note the over-rated Hepburn maps showed no signs of tropo for this area – http://www.dxinfocentre.com/tropo_eur.html
Been a while since the last post due to Christmas and New Year when not much radio was done. Last week was spent skiing in Font Romeu Catalunya and the only radio activity was opening the local repeater F5ZEZ on 145.6625 with my Icom IC-90 handheld. Repeater had a few local QSOs on it – especially in the mornings.
Look closely and you may see the repeater (or not…):
Back in Blighty I had to pop to Lynchy’s to get my Yaesu DXC 1000 rotator controller repaired which was not turning on. Turned out to be a faulty capacitor – must have been a Friday afternoon fabrication job as the controller is less than two years old and has hardly been used.
Some beautiful weather in Carcassonne last week with temperatures up to 28C! The MUF (maximum usable frequency) obliged as well and several NA and SA utility comms were heard between 29.7 and 40.0 MHz.
Here’s 33.6 MHz at 1515 UTC on 30 October 2013:
High MUF 39.040 MHz 15:20 UTC 30 October 2013 – sounds Brazilian
33.78 MHz at 15:29 UTC 30 October 2013:
and 33.74 MHz at 1517 UTC 1 November 2013:
SFI was getting up to 160 and above last week and it’s great to see the F2 propagation bring in some interesting DX.
Equipment used was the Icom 9100 in NFM with 12 kHz filter and Cushcraft R8 vertical. Audio fed out of icom into Acer laptop mic input and recorded with the versatile freeware Audacity.
Conditions have been very poor for the last week or so despite some F2 noted on 10m and US repeaters on 10m FM being audible in the late afternoons. Just before the the sun erupted again and disturbed MF conditions started I recorded the X-Band as heard in our rural dx location outside Carcassonne. The video shows how quiet it was with audio from 1640 WTNI Biloxi MS, 1670 WPLA Dry Branch GA, 1630 KCJJ Iowa City IA and 1620 Radio Rebelde Cuba.
Receiver is Perseus SDR with 300m BOG (Beverage on Ground). Conditions went rapidly downwards the following nights with nothing of interest making it through.
A bit of tropo in Carcassonne afternoon of 02 October 2013 . Duct was very narrowly focused to the SE across the Med to Sardinia. Video shows how RAI Radio 2 95.3 MHz from Tempio Pausania/Monte Limbara was sounding (and looking) on the Perseus FM+ with Triax FM5 at 125 degrees.
The Catalan stations are in virtually all the time wheras the Sardinians were tropo enhancement. Interesting to see the Catalan path just to east of where Pyrenees really start and to the west of the Alberes range.,