Sunday, February 1, 2015

Navassa is on the air!!!

Stopped in the shack to see what was going on around 00:00Z and K1N was banging away on 40M.  The first call was reported at 18:52 and by the time I got there at 00:00 things were bedlam in the pileup

They were strong Peaking over S9 

By 00:10 they were in the log!  

The op W2GD was smooth as butter flying up and down the pileup knocking them off right and left.  I was able to discern a ascent as he climbed the freq ladder with his receiver and placed myself directly on a collision course so my signal would hit his ears.  Took not more than 10 calls.  I worked him on my dipole with about 1200W.  

I had to run to the drug store and the bank and when I returned 80M had exploded.  They promised to try and get two or three rigs running tonight and they kept their promise.  It took me a little longer to sort out this pileup

But in about 4 calls they were in the log

Also a very good S9+ signal on 80M

The op on 80 was as butter smooth as the op on 40 had been.  When the QRM-ing got bad he shut down for 5 minutes and the pileup dissipated.  He was working high up in the pile maybe 3537 when he stopped and came back to 3525 when he returned.  When he got back he was calling EU and he worked some EU.  Amazingly NA stood by while he worked what EU he could hear.  Eventually he ran out of EU takers and reverted to all comers.  It was then I got him in the log.  There were tuner uppers all over the place but the Flex has a secret weapon for tuner uppers.  It's called TNF or tracking notch filter.  I tuned on this missal and zap the bastards like zapping a but.  K1N was perfectly Q5 but the QRM was virtually gone, even though the QRM was 10dB stronger than the DX.  The filter acts like a tune-able notch.  Stop bandwidth and freq are tune-able and you just zero such that the DX can be heard and the QRM can't

This radio never fails to impress!  I'm already a happy camper.  I hope to pick them up on 30M and then I'll be satisfied and give someone else a shot.  I'm pretty sure I could fill all band slots.  They are only 800 miles from my doorstep.  I may also try 160 but my antennas suck there so I don't hold out much hope for that band.  Give Navassa a whirl.  The last DXpedition there was 22 years and it will be a minimum of 10 years till the next window opens.  I think panning for this trip started in 1999.  Do not miss!!

73  W9OY


Got them on 20!   Never expected to do that since I'm only running a dipole.  Another great OP with a rate around 100/hr   

I used the radio set up slightly differently 

I had only one panadapter and one skimmer fired up.  I can still click around the pileup for tail ending but that wasn't how this OP was working the pile.  He was rapidly ascending and descending in the pileup and the only way I got him given all the strong 20M signals was to run ahead of his ascent or descent and try to have him pick me off as he passed by.  Very dynamic action and took maybe 25 minutes to work him even with my puny 20M sig.  You could tell where he was by the series of bold red 599's he left in his wake as well as looking for the call signs on the skimmer fall as he worked them.   Still hope to catch them on 30M

73 W9OY


30M is in the log  

This was the hardest yet.  They were louder on the vertical compared to the dipole.  The OP was working S&P contest style often making 2-3 khz jumps as he zipped up and down the pileup but sometimes just a few hz so you couldn't tell exactly how to position yourself.  Also he was basically working contest style as far as calls go.  It was bang bang and if you tried to call more than once he was long gone by the time you started to listen.  His technique maintained a high rate of contacts.  He was also quite well known by the pileup stopping to say HI to stations as he made the QSO with them  Makes for a very friendly sounding pileup.  He was using a move up the band technique.  When deliberate QRM started he would nudge himself up the band a dab and continue working the pileup while the QRMers were left looking like the dumb asses they are.  I'm very much enjoying this DXpedition.  I may give 160 a whirl.

73  W9OY


I can not freakin believe it, 160 is in the log!!  He was about S8 here, excellent signal.

I worked him on my 101 foot long W5GI mystery antenna tuned up on 160 and running 500W.   I worked him in 5 calls unbelievable.

73  W9OY