Good 160m conditions continue

I made sure to get on early this morning, about 50 minutes before my sunrise. Dave, A92IO had a good signal but unfortunately I was not able to raise him. Dave has high QRN levels in Bahrain.

After CQing, a weak OG2M calls in. I am not thinking the band is in good shape until I am told on KST chat that he was running 10w. Next, OH3XR calls in. Not to be out done, XR is running 5W, which is as low as his radio will go.

I turn on my recording software to record the opening. The recording is more than 40 minutes in length, so here are some clips I edited:

 LA3ANA calls in so he can hear himself recorded (no problem!):

 UA4CR calls in:

 S52AAM calls in, running only 10 watts:

Near my sunrise, I had the QSO of the morning – Ron, GW3YDX calls in, a new one for me. Ron lives in the most difficult part of Europe to work from here, aside from OY and perhaps TF (TF4M makes Iceland easy however).

 GW3YDX on 160m:

After our QSO, Vlad UA4WHX spotted himself (as SU9VB from Egypt). I believe Vlad runs only 30w into a dipole, but I was able to copy him somewhat. Unfortunately, I could not work him, for this would have been a new zone for me. Vlad worked a few stations then QSYed to 40m with some Eastern EU still calling, so I doubt he could have heard me even without a pileup.

 SU9VB working HA8BT:

By now, it was after my sunrise. Ron, GW3YDX QSYed to 80m for me, where he was also a new one for me.

 GW3YDX on 80m, QRMed by an IV3:

Finally, Jo DKJ2PH asked for a 40m QSO. You can hear the Chinese OTH radar very well.

 DK2PH on 40m, with BY OTH radar:

In all cases, I am listening on my European Beverage RX antenna. The antenna is just over 900ft long, and located in the jungle behind my home. I am fortunate to have no QRN sources near me in this direction – nothing but jungle and then the ocean – which allows me to hear *very* well in this direction.

Great 160m conditions today!

This morning, I had planning on sleeping in (Sunday) but woke just before the sun came up. I found 160m very quiet, and started CQing about 10 minutes before my sunrise. Callers were loud – the best signals this year – and I soon had generated a large pileup of Eastern Europeans.

Unfortunately, I missed a few Western EU callers – I hope to catch them over the next couple mornings.

I turned on my recording shortly after getting on the air:

This is a 9mb file, 20 minutes long.

K3LR on 160m

I worked K3LR on 160m during the CQWW DX SSB contest last night. He was one of three signals I heard on the band – the other two were NQ4I and B7P, neither of which could hear me. I recorded this just after working him, right at a peak close to his sunrise. I listened quite a bit for W3LPL, KC1XX, and others but heard nothing. I did work them on 80m however.

 K3LR (N2NC, op) CQing on 160m during the CQWW DX SSB contest:

I am listening on my 1080ft long NA Beverage, with the K3’s NB engaged with a 1-1 setting. This and my east Beverages are noisier because they are pointed toward populated areas of Guam. My EU Beverage, on the other hand, has no noise sources between it and the ocean, only jungle.

TL0CW on 80m CW

Recorded at 1945Z, about 25 minutes before my sunrise and about 5 minutes after working Rudy for my 2nd to last zone on 80m. I am flipping between VFOs, his TX and his pileup.

 TL0CW on 80m at 1945Z:

This is a longer recording made right at my SR. Rudi actually peaked here about 2000z, 10 minutes before my sunrise. Unfortunately there is some more QRM on his frequency.

 TL0CW on 80m at Sunrise:

10m noise

Here on Guam we are plagued by very high noise levels across the entire 10m band. This is due to illegal radio users in Southeast Asia – taxi drivers and others – who use this frequency spectrum. The result is unavoidable QRM across the entire band that is often S9+20db or more. It makes copy of weak stations impossible. Below is a link to a MP3 I made, listening in the 10m band, USB mode, on a single frequency.

Great 160m conditions this morning

Conditions were excellent to Europe this morning. Strong signals and no thunder crashes. I worked two stations in the UK, a very difficult path from here. Once I realized how special the conditions were, I recorded about 12 minutes of my run. The following MP3 will give you an idea of what it sounds from my end.

I am listening on a 900ft long Beverage pointed at Europe. There are no noise sources in this direction, so the only QRN is DX, not local.

ARRL DX SSB Contest

I was not highly motivated to participate in the ARRL DX SSB contest, however I did get on and make a few QSOs. Most notable was my QSO with K3LR on 160m. This was the last of the four big DX contests this season, and I was able to work K3LR on 160 in all four. Here is a recording of our QSO; it took a while for N2NC (the 160m op at LR) to hear me.

The new NA Beverage really sings. This is a 6,700 mile+ polar path bearing 030 degrees from Guam. I also worked W3LPL on 160. While I am very good friends with the K3LR and the operators at Tim’s station, I always make sure to give Frank’s team an equal shot at a QSO.

Unknown noise source

An unknown noise source has popped up on my NW Beverage, and my transmit vertical to a lesser extent. This noise is loud on both 160 and 80, and makes it impossible for me to hear stations in Europe. I believe I heard a similar noise for about a month, but not quite strong, a few months ago. My NW Beverage is normally my quietest antenna with a S0 noise floor.

This noise varies from S9 to S9+30dB on my Beverage. Recorded in AM mode, 5Khz bandwidth, on my K3.

I drove around the housing area and located one extinguished sodium street lamp that was putting out a strong 60 cycle hum. The crackling sound I could hear everywhere, even a mile away from my house, on the AM radio in my car.