tirsdag 24. februar 2015

Portable station...

Portable station -
10-meter fiberglass mast and linked dipol is the antenna.. 

So nice!!! Again!! Local repeater destroying SSTV from ISS...

The local repeater at Follo is AGAIN destroying the SSTV reception from ISS.

søndag 15. februar 2015

Charging batteries after successful weekend

I had a few good contacts during the weekend.
Batteries didn't hold up as long as I thought.
Not too bad, but they had not been charged properly before my trip.
The LiPo held about 11.5V at start, and it's about 55% of total capacity.

So, Charging both my 2700mAh pack in the FT-817nd and my 5000mAh LiPo pack now.
Using internal charger in the radio - 2 x 12h at 110mAh charge.
Using an imax B6 LiPro charger at 1Ah for my 3S LiPo. Should take about 5h+

This is an original B6 charger.
I also have an B6 Copy. It does it ok, but in the end of the charge it pushes the voltage up to 4.23V.
This is 0.3V too much for LiPo max voltage. This is documented all over the net..
So, for emergency - no worries. There might be parameters in the charger to change to make it stop at 4.20V.

Temperature safety is important,
I have added a simple temperature sensor in the LiPo-Safe-charge bag to watch the temp.
I have also added it to our house surveillance with a alarm at 35C.
It should be no danger with only 1A charge. I like to start nice with new batteries, and ramp it up later.

Charging - 

Really unbalanced cells...
Charging didn't do better than this..

Do a balanced charge now, to see if it helps...
If not - going for discharging of the battery and then a new charge.

Is it hope... ?

No hope... !
I did a discharge..
No good - this one cell dropped below 3.5V after 2 hours..
So, this LiPo is no good!

After this discovery.. I got me 2 new batteries.
So, I now have 3 LiFe 13.2V batteries.
Ready for Field day! :-)

The biggest one is too powerful to bring on a plane(111Wh)
But, 2 x 55 Wh is ok - if 2 or more is travelling :-)

Next trip - FT-817nd with 2 x LiFe to FL in US... 

See you on the air!

lørdag 14. februar 2015

Testing my portable setup

Testing out my portable setup in Molde.
A few things need to be fixed.
Need more links on my dipole.. :-)
Need a better quality on my RG-174 cable and connectors.
MIL Spec is needed. Don't believe it is now...

torsdag 5. februar 2015

Using FUNcube Dongle Pro+ and CW Skimmer

CW Skimmer is a great tool to find the PileUP RX QRG for the DX-stations..

FUNcube Pro+ is not per default supported by CW Skimmer.

There is a way to get it working...

You will need:

  • FUNcube Pro+ USB HW dongle
  • CW Skimmer software
  • FUNcube Dongle Pro+ Control program found at http://www.funcubedongle.com/?page_id=1225
  • an HF antenna.........

Put the FCHID2.002.exe file in same directory as CW Skimmer.

First - in CW Skimmer in menu View - Settings:
Configure Hardware Type to SoftRock and Sampling Rate to 192kHz.

Using it is a bit of hard work.
It's needed to be calibrated for every band to be used.
This to have an exact frequency to set your radio to when found in CW Skimmer.

So as an example, for 12-meter:

1. Configure the frequency in FUNcube Dongle Pro+ Control V2.002:
Enter the frequency and "Set frequency":

2. Configure the LO Frequency in Hz:

3 Set the frequency in "Tune at Frequency":

Then at least 10-12Khz is an good working area.. 

4. Look for "599" reports - and the DX RX QRG is known :-)