I passed my radio amateur exam in March 2013 and I registered the callsign PD4KH (pappa delta four kilo hotel!). PD4KH on qrz.com
I am usually located around maidenhead locator: JO22NC
I upload logs to eQSL.cc during and after being active on the radio. I upload logs to ARRL Logbook of the World, www.qrz.com and hrdlog on a regular basis. I like paper cards via the QSL bureau so I send those out and I will respond when I receive those. Notifying me via e-mail that you would like a card is also possible.
I appreciate QSL reports for QSOs.
gallery of eQSL cards received by PD4KH.
D-Star digitale amateur radio (Nederlands)
I thought of this ages ago: Moving the lightning strike detector to the shed but only today got around to it because we had some serious chances of a thunderstorm earlier today which showed up on the lightning strike detector but the graph was completely screwed up again after I tried some psk31 digital mode transmissions on the 20 meter amateur band (14.000 to 14.250 MHz for me). So now it is in the shed. Moving it to a lower position does mean I will not get readings for thunderstorms as far away as I used to but I'd rather have usable readings at this moment. First tests with transmitting psk31/psk63 on 20 the meter amateur band after I changed it look like it doesn't count the transmissions anymore. Now to wait for the next thunderstorm to see how that gets counted. Some blips are showing up.
The last year in counted lightning strikes, showing clearly that I got active on 20meter psk31 in October 2014
I thought I heard short exchanges with locators and callsigns when I made the last recording of an SO-50 pass. But since this is all NATO spelling and without any indication which part was what it wasn't completely clear to me what I was hearing. So I asked on the Amsat-bb mailing list about the typical SO-50 exchange and got an elaborate explanation:
So I would answer with: callsign de Pappa Delta Four Kilo Hotel, Five Nine in Juliet Oscar Two Two November Charlie, QSL? With: Pappa Delta Four Kilo Hotel PD4KH my callsign, Five Nine the signal report (audio quality 5 and signal level 9), Juliet Oscar Two Two November Charlie the Maidenhead Locator for where I usually operate and QSL? the Q code for Can you acknowledge receipt?.
- Europe: callsign / signal report (normally 59) / 6-character grid locator.
- In other parts of the world like North America and Australia, signal reports are not normally given.
- The 6-character grid locator is useful in Europe, where we in North America usually just go with 4-character grid locators.
- In Australia, call signs and general descriptions of your signals (loud/clear, for example) are all that they exchanged. No 59, no grid locator.
This evening I had a nice pass of SO-50, maximum elevation 83 degrees, southwest to northeast so I decided to give it a try. I heard two callsigns distinctly and tried replying to them but they didn't hear me or didn't reply. I recorded the pass again with the line-in on my mp3 player. Using the simple earphones from my mp3 player gave me reasonable audio. The cable between the radio and the splitter was giving some issues again: I still had intermittent audio levels when the cable moved. Update: And I edited the audio file I recorded: took of the first noise until the first voices showed up in the audio. I may have cut off too much as I can't find the German callsign anymore that I was quite sure I heard.
The weather is finally getting better and some people really would like me to demonstrate satellite QSO's. So I need to get active again and make those contacts. One thing I wanted to improve was the recording of contacts. When I use the FT-857 radio with computer control I can record everything but I need lots of wires and equipment. I also want to record in a more 'lightweight' setup, with a handheld radio (or two for full duplex). So I dug up an older 3.5mm headphone splitter and used my iRiver ifp-795 in line-in recording mode to record the incoming audio while hearing it at the same time via headphones. Today I tested recording the audio from the Wouxun KG-UVD1P. Someone on repeater PI3UTR was nice enough to keep it busy. I had a reasonable recording, it had distortion. Next test is on a pass of the SO-50 satellite. Update: I had a low pass (about 30 degrees elevation maximum) and I noticed the cable between the radio (2.5mm mono) and the splitter (3.5mm stereo) was giving an intermittant contact so I resoldered it. Understandig the callsigns in the audio was still a problem, I had to turn up the volume quite high which led to a distorted recording. And when I leave the iRiver ifp-795 in line-in recording mode it does not shut down after some minutes of inactivity. I have to shut it down by hand or switch to mp3 player mode.
Slight adjustment of my highest distance in a PSK31 contact: 7179 kilometer to KP4DQC in Puerto Rico.
For the joint experiment in amateur satellites last Saturday I added a second monitor to the PC so I could watch the gqrx waterfall and the fldigi waterfall at the same time. And on Sunday I noticed some weird new interference around 14.070 MHz which made decoding the PSK31 signals a lot harder. The new VGA cable near the radio was a suspect and indeed after removing it completely the problem went away again. So if I want a working dual-screen setup, I'll have to find better video cables. Maybe DVI gives less interference. It was nice to have fldigi running PSK31 on one screen and do other things on the other screen. The upside was that with the current versions of Linux video driver I had to do zero fiddling to make the setup work dual-screen.
I recently built and tested a new lightweight HF antenna. It's an endfed for the 10, 20 and 40 meters amateur bands (28 MHz, 14 MHz and 7 MHz). With my current Novice license I don't have a lot of access to the 40 meter amateur band, only 7.050 MHz to 7.100 MHz. But during testing station DL65DARC was active and heard my reply and confirmed it via eQSL. I had earlier contacts on 40 meter (while testing the same antenna) but this is the first confirmed one.
Recently a number of satellites was launched including some cubesats with amateur radio functions. One of the interesting ones is ParkinsonSat named after Bradkin Parkinson who is famous for his contributions to the GPS system. PSAT has a very interesting transponder: uplink at 28.120 USB psk31 and downlink at 435.350 MHz FM with telemetry in PSK31 included. PSK31 has a very narrow bandwith at 31 Hz, so the entire downlink signal can include 30 distinct PSK31 signals. With my setup I can transmit to the satellite on HF or try to recieve it with the arrow antenna, but actually making a QSO through it without a rotor to aim the antenna sounds impossible to me. But, there is enough to experiment with.
Sending outgoing QSL cards also results in incoming cards:
Finally some time to write outgoing QSL cards. 32 of them. Maybe I need to start ordering them, this was after I printed and cut a 'large' batch. Already all filled in and ready to get to the QSL bureau.