Sunday, October 23, 2011

28Mhz Opening!

This week has been amazing on 10m!

The band has been open during the day and I have heard stations from North and South America sounding like locals. lots of Italian and Russian stations and today I heard Brazil, Malta and Greece at incredible signal strengths.

I have decided that now is the time to change my HF antenna. If I can hear these stations with a (short) longwire and a lot of noise, I wondered what I may hear with a dipole or G5RV antenna.

After a lot of thinking and research, I have decided to replace the very poor longwire with a half-size G5RV antenna, so now I have ordered one from ebay. I am on holiday this week, so I will put up the new aerial and try it on 10 metres. Trouble is that because it is a half size G5RV, it may not work well on 80m and 160m, but maybe my tuner or Z-match with compensate for that.

I am still amazed at the discone antenna. It seems to work well to receive stations on 10m as a vertical without all the noise and this morning it did the same on 160m when I listened to the 1963 net. Transmitting is not good though, very high SWR!

It is difficult to imagine how the sunspots affect the 10m band. For 10 years the band is dead with very few stations, but now it is jam packed with stations from all over the world. What a wonderful phenomena!

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