Shack at 02/05/14

Shack at 02/05/14

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Couple of HAB flights yesterday (Saturday).. First up was EDUPIC2 on 434.650 rtty 50/430 shift 8n2
Green's from 13:04..Followed by VCR2 on 434.653  rtty 50/425 shift  14:00 green decodes.  14:13 signal started to drift slowly down toward EDUPIC's frequency.  First time I've had two flights within the same pass band.  Still managed to track both flights for most of their time aloft, though EDUPIC2, for some reason, had bouts of sending 'No QPS lock, with temp and battery states.

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Thought I'd have a go at Sim31 mode over the last hour.  Got the hang of manual mode and had 4 qso's, but still to get a reply from auto mode.  Apparently the program, after setting in auto mode will call cq and automatically carry out a qso with any station responding.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Well here's an hour and twenty minute's worth of jt65-hf.  The icons are stations having received my signal, not those that I have worked.  Would prefer the icons displayed the call signs rather than time, as per the wspr map, but you can't have everything..Not long on this mode as I did some painting and decorating this afternoon, so wspr more suited to leaving on auto as it were..Had enough for today anyway.

19:00 local, trying some jt65-hf using HB9HQX's edition V0.9.77.0   as screenshot.  One handy feature in this edition is that I don't have to look up stations that I have worked before, which is very handy as there's only a few seconds allowed to make up my mind whether to answer a cq.  This program announces (CQ in morse) whenever I've worked a station already, so eliminating duplicates.  Neat!..Look to the far left of qso list. B4 =Before, surprisingly enough hi.
Thought I'd try a quick half hour of wspr before shopping. Doesn't seem logical on 20 metres, seeing as the states are still in darkness, but there you go, that's radio for you..Try some jt65-hf this afternoon I expect.  Want to settle on something whilst HAB's are out of the frame, but would like to actually interact with something, rather than just sit back and observe as is basically the case with wspr..  jt65 is more suitable in that respect.  Anyway, 'Best laid plans' as they say...Here's the last half hour's bag of wspr.  Have a nice day!

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

That'll do for today I think.  Tomorrow I'll try some jt65-hf, depending on any HAB activity which takes precedence.

No HAB's today so figuring on what to do as a back up, radio wise.  Got out my trusty Rigblaster and strapped it to my IC-718.  Knicked the loop from the DX-394 and fired up some wspr for a couple of hours, see if I like to park there in future.   Here's a screenshot showing stations having received my 8'ish watts. The mag loop is indoors remember.  Not bad eh!  Next I'll retune the loop from 14.0956 to 14.076 and try some jt-65.  Even that small change needs a retune *sigh*..

Monday, 15 September 2014

Sunday saw callsign JFS2 take off from ROSS-ON-WYE  on frequency 434.450 usb  rtty 50/700 7n2
Also carried BUZZ which was on 434.252 usb. 50/470 7n2.

13:54 JFS2 green decodes at 3,607 mtrs altitude with BUZZ green at 14:10   14:29 losing BUZZ so switched to JFS2. Green at 14,260 mtrs..14:30 Now losing JFS2 too..14:47 Put 10 db of IF gain on dongle and regained JFS2 for a while.. 15:43 Popped and 15:54 it was all over for me..

Sunday, 14 September 2014

No luck with 'XO' from Cambridge area yesterday (Saturday)..Even though I was well inside the green footprint I just couldn't get a strong enough signal to get clean decodes. Plenty of partials, but no green's.

Maybe better luck today. Expect 'JFS2' to lift off around 12:30 ish from Ross-On-Wye.  Frequency 434.650 usb.  rtty 50Bd 720 shift 7 (ascii) Bits no parity 2 stop bits..

Friday, 12 September 2014

Bit of a washout HAB wise today.  Returned from town in plenty of time to set myself up to receive today's flight, which include 5 payloads no less.

LEX on 434.400 rtty 50 bd 425 shift 7n2
KALEL on 434.420 rtty 50 bd 470 shift 8n2.
CLARK on 434.435 rtty 600 bd 880 shift 8n2 SSDV
LOIS on 434.465 rtty 50 bd 470 shift 8n2
OLSEN on 434.480 rtty 600 bd 880 shift 8n2 SSDV

Spent the next couple of hours following the launch at 112:53 trying to decoded, basically anything.
I wanted to grab some SSDV packets at least, but even though I was well inside the footprint I failed to register a single 'Green' from any payload.  All traces were visible on the waterfall, but none were strong enough to decode. I thought I should have decoded Kalel at one point as the signal was reasonable, but even switching to 7n1 that someone suggested was the correct setting, I still failed to decoded any data.

Never mind, always tomorrow.

Anyway, I've been bust since playing with some new software I found mentioned in Practical Wireless whilst in town.  It's called sdrDX and can be downloaded from the following link

Here's a screenshot of mine in action with Funcube Pro+

I have most of it sussed out, but although the record function works I'm only getting the general background and not the voice on playback.  Probably sort it eventually.  Memory function works ok.
I was losing all the settings on shut down/restart, but after reading the instruction properly realised   I had to click off the Funcube first before closing the actual program. All good fun, and free even.  

Monday, 8 September 2014

Not a bad day yesterday, HAB wise.  Wanted to concentrate on PI_CE1 as it had a camera on board, but also grabbed some data from MAX and SPAVA, two other flights.

PI_CE1 was on 434.350 usb   300 bd 900 shift 8n2
SPAVA on 434.446 usb using Thor16 mode
MAX on 434.425 using rtty 50 bd 275 shift 7n2

Murphy's law said every time I reached packets including the furry pilot, I would miss some *sigh*.  Still, receiving anything is a bonus I guess.  See HAB page for couple of near complete SSDV images.

Here are some screenshots taken from this computer.

Saturday was a washout I'm afraid.  Joey was launched from Cambridge just after 11 am on 434.595 usb using rtty 50 bd 300 shift 8n2    At 11:41 I received Joey on  434.591 waterfall, but climbing in frequency to .596   Height 4,284 mtrs.  13:13 now at 14,862 mtrs and still not decoding.  Now the signal has climbed into a bad interference area on waterfall.  As you see from screenshot I tried to notch as mcsh as I could out.  Joey's 2 trace bars can be seen still..However, to no avail. as at 13:59 Joey popped and descended with still no green decode. I even tried upping the IF gain on the dongle, but no joy.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Not a good day Saturday.  Joey was launched from Cambridge  (50 bd 300 shift 8 n2) and initially all looked good, but the frequency kept climbing from the clear spot up in amongst some terrible interference. Murphy's law, a nice big sprog right in the spot Joey wanted to settle on.  As you see from the screenshot I tried to notch out the worst of it, and Joey did just appear  amongst all that.

The signal just did not come in strong enough for some reason to get a green decode, despite my being comfortably inside the green footprint.  I even upped the IF gain to 40 db on the dongle, but still couldn't cut a decode.  Oh well, Looks like a busy day today. 3 flights in the offing it seems.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Ok, Second part of todays post. Here's some pics received from CHDK

Today saw CHDK/SPARK/CHEAPO launched from Chelmsford

SPARK was on 434.400 usb 50/450 7n2 and Cheapo on 434.298 usb also 50/450 7n2.

I managed a green from CHEAPO at 17:12 before shifting to CHDK

I concentrated on CHDK as this was transmitting SSDV pictures. Once settle on 434.321 usb and receiving eventually at 17:41 I didn't want to risk losing DL Fldigi by resetting bd rate etc, as I had a couple of 'freeze up's' of the software. Had this in the past when usingb 600  bd

Anyway, although 600 bd and 600 shift was publicised, I increased the shift to 700 to get successful decodes.  AFC coped with auto filter bandwidth off.  I increased the bandwidth bars until  nearly meeting in centre. I'll do another post with received pics as they are on my other computer

Bit of catching up to do here.

Ok yesterday was a good day for HAB tracking.  11:37 BALYOLO up from Northampton on 434.502 usb...12:00 very weak at 3299 mtrs altitude..12:00 Ok now, greens at 6252 metres.

 14:16 Still waiting to decode XABENO.  Strange! practically reaching green footprint too..14:36 At last a green decode at 19600 metres. 14:43 Much stronger now.

14:55 Looks like BUZZ is up (Nr Cambridge). 3 payloads but I can't decode 2 of them as don't have the required decoder.  15:00 Feint audio and W/F trace on 434.250 rtty 50 bd 470 shift 7n2.

15:19 XABENO is descending...15:56 BUZZ strong @13174 metres. Been rising in frequency from .250 to near .253 but starting to drop again.. 16:32 21000 metres and lost decodes.. 16:36 Signal coming back. Couple of green's but mostly red's..16:47 Green's again..17:00 Noticed chute open...17:31 4758 metres..17:32 4284 metres (Last green decode(

Associated screenshots

Monday, 1 September 2014

31/08/04 1542 Bit confusing at the moment. Looks like three flights imminent, but not much info. USBEDS2 Joey and Joey-B

Joey-B apparently transmitting alternate rtty and Turbohab modes, so I'll stick to rtty as I don't have the decoder for the latter

16:00 10 minutes 'ish to launch. The three payloads are on the same flight which will drift S/East, so will come well within my range.  16:34 and we're up and running. 16:52 Receiving red's from UBSEDS2 on 434.639 usb. (Height 2000 mtrs).. 16:54 Green decode @ 2077 mtrs. Waving a bit on waterfall.

17:00 Received Joey green @ 2,780 mtrs  on 434.612 usb.  18:25 UBSEDS1 Frequency drifting too much for AFC to track.-Too weak now. 11.000 mtres and drifting out to sea S/E of me. Could be a bad rf direction for me?.

UBSEDS2 was tx'ng rtty 50/420 8n2 and Joey rtty 50/560 7n2

18:39 Switching to EDUPIC1 on 434.650 usb 434.650 usb 50/380 8n2
19:00 away and weak on waterfall by 19:50-Reds at 3.400 mtrs and Green at 5,201 mtrs by 20:23

22:00 Still greens, but time for my beauty sleep so closed down.  All in all a good days HAB'ing