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Technical Corner

Interesting technical articles

Seeing the good in Solar winds at the bottom of the sun cycle

It is normal that strong ionised particles escape the sun during a solar flare-up. The number of sunspots (bright spots visible on the sun) that indicate the flare-ups vary over a cycle which can be as short as 7 years or as long as 11. More sunspots equate to a consistent re-charging of the Earths Ionosphere and hence better DX conditions around the globe within the Ionosphere.

Monitoring short range propagation

More often than not, in the Amateur radio Hobby, we are looking to see when the space weather is going to help us make distant (DX) contacts. There are however times when long skip distances are not what we want!

Testing the losses of Multi-coupler’s, Splitter & Low Pass Filter

My Stridsberg (USA) Receiver 8 port multi-couplerfailed and being unsure of where to procure the LNA replacement and unable to find information, I replaced the unit with a substantially more affordable 5 port unit from the UK manufacturer Cross Country Wireless.

Packet Radio
Hardware and Software in 2019

Packet in use
Error free message and mail, file and data transfers, keyboard to keyboard (texting), tracking and telemetry (APRS), satellites. Range can also bein creased by the use of digipeating or networking e.g. NETROM

SMC Soldering

Lecture, demonstration and hands on practice on everything you need to know about soldering surface mounted components (SMC)


A loop antenna is generally considered “small”, if its circumference is less than 10% of the operatingwavelength. So in my case (for 80 mtrs), “small” would be a circumference of less than 8 mtrs, e.g., acircular loop with a diameter less than 2.5 mtrs (≈ 8.2 ft). To be more precise, we are talking about asmall resonant loop. Note that a multi-band loop that is “small” in the lowest band, is not necessarily”small” in the higher bands ( = higher frequency)

MX-P50M HF Amplifier Tests and findings by Peter VK2EHQ

The IC-705 will primarily be utilized for WICEN HF data activities as well as portable use. Reports I read, indicated that the MX-P50M didn’t create splatter and the signal was readable and without apparent issues. This is possibly fine for SSB on VHF/UHF but HF data is a “little” more demanding. The transceiver may meet all the criteria of frequency accuracy, stability and signal drive level, but an amp can change that ideal scenario.