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      Managed by DL8SDL
QTH:72766 Reutlingen
Web: http://hamqth.com/dl8sdl
Email: Hidden
ITU: 28
QSL via: eQSL / LOTW preferred, Direct, OQRS.


"A grown up man calling himself a feminist is clearly looking for a shag" (Rod Liddle)



TRX: Yaesu FT-817 with TCXO and CW filter, Kenwood TH-D72

PWR: 5W out, <10W EIRP

ANT 80m: vertical wire 18m high using the push-up fiberglas pole by hams4hams.com fastened to a large chestnut tree with the topmost 2m poking out of the treetop. No guy wires - surrounded by the tree's branches and protected by its leaves the fiberglas pole will live forever without guying. 48 radials with random lengths from 5m up to 40m are fitted on the forest ground. The vertical is fed by 50m of buried heliax feedline. A matching network to use this antenna on 160, 80 and 40m is under construction.

ANT 40-10m: Antron Solarcon A-99 on a self supporting 4m aluminum mast. 60 radials with random lengths from 3m up to 20m are fitted under the backyard lawn - see the title picture. Remote operated matching network M3TR at antenna feedpoint, 25m buried heliax feedline.

To convert the A-99 into an efficient multiband vertical the original 27MHz matching network must be thrown away and replaced by a single-ended antenna tuner. Just connecting the tuner to the A99's RF connector is clearly not sufficient - you definitely have to get rid of the small serial capacitance in the A-99's original matching network. And don't forget enough radials because antennas without counterpoise exist only in fairytales or in advertising. Listen to W8JI's wise words: "End-feeding antennas is bad news unless you have a large, well established ground at the feedpoint".

ANT RX: PA0RDT mini-whip in a Schedule 40 pipe 4m high on the carport roof.

Software: fldigi or wsjt-x on Ubuntu Linux using the digimode interface BX-120 from funkamateur.de. I am logging with cqrlog and survey my station's TX/RX performance with pskreporter. For APRS I like XASTIR and when I'm chasing DX I visit DXHeat. My logs are periodically uploaded to Clublog.



DL8SDL is operating QRP only (<= 5W) and only digimodes. Occasionally 2m/70cm/23cm FM mobile, portable or APRS.
When I'm not operating I work or enjoy gardening - while listening to the music of The Doors, The Dead Kennedys, Crosby, Stills and Nash or The Ramones.



All my shortwave QSO's from 2005 on are in the eQSL and in the Clublog database. New QSO data is automagically uploaded to eQSL by the fldigi software. Older QSOs before 2005 have been QSL'd with paper QSL via the bureau at that time. As I operate VHF/UHF only mobile or portable I can't keep track of my QSOs there. So if one QSL is missing please contact me, I'll resend it. Or use OQRS. I strongly prefer the eQSL service and the LOTW over paper QSLs - we need our amateur radio clubs as a lobby against half-baked new restrictions, not as a postcard service.


APRS, Weather, Paging and Packet Radio:

In my youth I was a packet radio aficionado - At a time 10 years before the invention of the AOL CD when nobody knew "Internet" there was a massive amount of young people (aged 15..25) active in packet radio. We were online 24/7 - among the first people they call "digital natives" today. Back then, our social media worked via textmode chat and file transfer over a radio network we built from scratch and we maintained and enlarged it by ourselves - what a great experience! There was amateur radio voice mail back then and we often met in real life. We even had "online dating" in Packet Radio - resulting in two married couples with four children today.

The Packet Radio network is long gone, but APRS and POCSAG paging are still valuable assets for amateur radio as they allow messaging from everywhere. I help maintaining these networks by operating the stations DB0XHI, DM0AI, DB0WUB and DB0PRT. As I am over 35 now I behave accordingly and don't use today's "social media" - these are made for 14-year olds and are a rip-off compared to what we created by ourselves in the '90s.



The geostationary satellite "QO-100" is the coolest thing since sliced bread, so I built a TX/RX converter unit to take part in the fun:

As uplink radio I am using a modified old German point-to-point radio link system "FM-DT/2400". These systems were used in Northern Germany at a time when WiFi was non existent in this band. Robust construction, built like a tank, a multitude of copper tube combline filters and milled and plated RF enclosures with SMA connectors. Its LO is a fairly modern design, stabilized with a PLL /DDS unit using a 100MHz OCXO as master reference. After reprogramming the DDS, tuning the LO to 2255MHz and retweaking the filters my FT-817's 145MHz TX signal is now converted to about 6 watts peak output power on the QO-100 uplink frequency. Unfortunately I could not get my hands on one of the wonderful 120cm/60cm primefocus dishes of the original radiolink system so my transmission antenna is a 24dBi WiFi grid antenna

The downlink LNB is a  "Octagon OQSLG" LNB fit in my house's satellite TV reception dish. I modified the LNB to add an external 25MHz reference input that uses the TX converter's 100MHz OCXO frequency divided by four. The third multiple of the TX converter's OCXO frequency (300MHz) converts the LNB's output frequency to 439MHz for reception with my FT-817.



I was a passionate radio listener till 1999 - at that time radio in Germany changed drastically and shifted to a homogenous 24h "formatted" program schedule abolishing seperate program hours with different music and talk genres during the day. The quality of the news and presentation is still declining leaving only the talk stations "Deutschlandfunk" and "Deutschlandfunk Kultur" really worth listening. By now I have embraced internet streaming radio and podcasts - because when a radio station is managed like this I won't bother listening to it for one minute.

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