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KB0SMY
08-07-2008, 12:21 PM
I just got an hf rig and was wondering what is the best time to find contacts on 10meters.

KC4UMO
08-07-2008, 12:25 PM
You really need to play it by ear.
Listen between 28.2 to 28.3
If you hear beacons the band is open but no one may be calling CQ.
Call CQ and see what happens.

I find it open here around 6 to 8 pm.

K0CMH
08-07-2008, 01:02 PM
When the sunspots are at a low, like now, many people try the "grayline propagation". This happens to an area of the globe, as day turns to night, or night to day. However, it is not a given, and on any one morning or evening, it may or may not happen. The propagation path is to the south for us, into South America.

As the day proceeds, the sunlight builds up the ionization of the ionosphere and possible 10 meter propagation may or may not happen.

The bottom line for 10 meters these days is: it is very unpredictable, and we hardly ever get true DX opinings on 10 meters without the sunspot activity.

Since we are at the bottom of the sunspot cycle, things will not be improving for about a year or so. As the sunspot activity picks up on this new 11 year cycle, 10 meter propagation will also improve.

Until then, we can call 10 meters "the fickled band". It will be mostly unpredictable, intermittant E-Skip.

The advice to listen to 28. 200 - 28.300 is good. That is where many CW becons operate on 10 meters. Hams set up low power stations on 10 meters that constantly transmit a low power CW signal. When you hear CW in that portion of the band, that means propagation has opened up, at least in the direction of the beacons you hear. If you can copy CW, you can determine the general location the beacons by their callsign (and can look up the callsign information on the internet).

When 10 meters opens up, you can communicate with a wet noodle. But these days, those openings are far and few between.

N8YX
08-07-2008, 01:17 PM
During a sporadic E event.

I've also seen the band open almost 24h/day during a sunspot peak.

Have access to a current weather radar? Find a big cluster or line of energetic thunderstorms anywhere from 400-600 miles away. Point your antenna towards them and odds are you'll be able to contact stations located on the trailing side of the storms, equidistantly spaced. Current thought is that very active complexes are partly or wholly responsible for Es ionization events.

N5RMA
08-07-2008, 01:43 PM
I use Beacon Clock to listen for beacons. It is certainly not the only one, and I am sure it may not be the best. You can go here for a look-see and download if you like. It is freeware.

http://www.huntting.com/beaconclock/index.html

I often see responses saying go here, and you can click here and there is an url address coded in. Can anyone tell a simpled minded fellow how to do that. :confused:

KC4UMO
08-07-2008, 02:06 PM
I often see responses saying go here, and you can click here and there is an url address coded in. Can anyone tell a simpled minded fellow how to do that.



Go here (http://www.huntting.com/beaconclock/index.html)

{url=http://www.huntting.com/beaconclock/index.html}Go here{/url}

Just replace the { } with [ ]
It is called using hidden url tags

W4HAY
08-07-2008, 02:15 PM
More beacons: http://userpages.troycable.net/~wj5o/bcn.htm

Time varies greatly, but mid/late afternoon has been productive here. I've mostly been listening & calling CQ around 28.050 if I hear any beacons.

Learning CW will greatly enhance you chances for finding activity on ANY of the bands.

Eventually joining Ten-Ten International (http://www.ten-ten.org/) should be worthwhile if you're serious about 10 Meters.

KA4DPO
08-07-2008, 02:26 PM
The simple answer is, there is no best time of day. Sporatic E propagation can occur at any time, day or night. It's more likely during daylight hours but it does happen after sundown as well.

You just have to listen. If you have a receiver that can pick up CB try listening there for the skipland boneheads. Chances are if you hear a lot of activity on the CB tem meters is open as well. If you don't hear anyone on ten give a few calls, someone may be listening.

AG3Y
08-07-2008, 02:50 PM
I like DPO's answer. Also, you are NOT going to see F2 layer propagation any time real soon. The sunspot number is nearly zero for days on end, and "Ole Sol " hasn't turned the corner yet, and started producing significant numbers of them.

The time will come, and then as it was stated earlier, you will see world wide propagation on the higher bands. Until then, there's always CW on the lower bands !

73, Jim

WJ5O
08-07-2008, 04:12 PM
Thanks for the "plugs" on listening through the beacon portion of ten meters...

Beacons are the only "real time" indicators of band openings..... CW knowledge is a must if a person is to determine the direction of the beacon signal.

If a person can hear a QRP beacon signal it's almost a sure thing that a contact can be achieved in the direction of the signal..... often a few CQs is all that is needed.

W9ASS
08-07-2008, 05:29 PM
Hello,

For voice, I find the most active time is anytime after 6am, when the conditions are just starting to improve. I would estimate that the peak is in the early evening, from 6pm until 10pm. After 10pm, the conditions begin to fade considerably....

I would try 28.310, .325, .375, .385, .400, .405, .415, .425, and .450/.475. There is quite a bit of activity on this frequencies.

If you are a CW aficionado, I would try anything below the beacons at 28.295 mHz. Just tune in and pound away! Good luck!

PS: I can be found on 28.350, .375, .400 (DX contacts) and .410 from time to time. Give a listen for the "ASS", aka W9ASS...I hope to work you sometime!

K0RGR
08-07-2008, 05:38 PM
As others have stated, right now, the only propagation you're likely to find on 10 meters is "sporadic E skip". I emphasize the word "sporadic". It can happen at any time of the day or night, but tends to be most prevalent in the late morning, and in the evening. However, we were making QSO's on 10 meters during Field Day well after midnight!

E peaks in the early summer and is usually about gone by August. There is also a peak in the middle of winter from December to January.

Propnet is a tool that you can use to spot band openings, too. http://propnet.findu.com/catch.cgi?last=1&geo=world.geo

Based on the current map, it looks like 10 has been open a lot in the last 24 hours...

I tend to leave a receiver going on 28.4 when I can.

KE6KA
08-07-2008, 10:31 PM
It varies by time of year, propagaton mode, and sunspot cycle for F-layer.

At the peak of the Es season, the normal patter for Es where I'm at, based on what I've observed, is a strong peak starting around 8:30 AM to around 11:00 AM, mainly north-south. It then changes to an omni-directional pattern during mid-day, but not quite as strong. About 3:30 PM a very strong peak coming out of the northeast and southeasterly directions, then aligning north-south before sunset, then I'm assuming it goes out over the ocean to the southwest, and a few stations up into BC/AK just after sunset, then the propagation vanishes for an hour or so before a fair peak around 10:30 PM, mainly north-south, with several stations to the east, and if you are lucky, multi-hop or cloud to cloud out to Hawaii. I've heard a few from Japan around this time of night, but not this year. Propagation usually goes away by about 1:00 AM, but then around 3:00 AM a few weak openings appear from random directions.

Later in the season it pretty much diminishes to mid-morning, late-afternoon, and maybe a third late-evening peak around 9:00 PM.

K7DAA
08-08-2008, 12:41 AM
For a band that's entirely depending on "Sporadic" E propagation right now, I've been impressed at how non-sporadic it's been this summer so far! From my location in Northern California, I can often expect almost daily north-south openings on 10 meters right now, generally from 10 AM to the early evening hours local time from my mobile as I'm commuting to and from work.

Contacts I've had have typically been north-south from Idaho and Washington state down through southern Arizona. I'm sure that's due more to the numbers and locations of hams rather than strict propagation limits. We certainly don't see many contacts on 10 to the west of California at this point!

I usually listen to the beacon frequencies already mentioned, then 28.400 USB or 29.6 FM. Don't forget to listen on some of the 10 meter repeater outputs as well, although simplex communications seem to happen first when there's an opening.

By the way, if you're interested in the higher frequency bands, don't forget to listen for the great network of world-wide DX beacons on 14.1, 18.11, 21.15, 24.93, and 28.2 MHz (CW). They are a great resource to indicate what bands are open, and to where. They are all time synchronized, and very predictable as to when you should be hearing each one (but don't be shocked if you don't hear any of them on a given day, depending on which band you're on). As a point of personal interest, I pass under the W6WX beacon on Mt. Umunhum (love the name) twice a day on my commute. Here's a link with more info about them: http://www.ncdxf.org/beacons.html

Also, as others have mentioned, don't be afraid to call CQ, even if you hear nothing for long minutes. I did this yesterday on a "dead" band, and a VE7 (Vancouver, BC) quickly returned my short CQ on 28.400. By the way, the normal protocol on 10 is to keep it very short if you're on one of the popular "watering hole" frequencies like 28.4--either the band is open or it's not. Anyway, this guy was S9+40 to my simple mobile set-up for about 10 minutes, then quickly faded away. Typical day on 10 meters. Openings can be very short, and very focused between two given locations: Oftentimes you and the guy/gal in Canada can hear each other, but nobody else can hear either of you.

About 7 weeks ago, there was a real free-for-all on 29.6 FM in the late afternoon here between San Francisco and parts of Arizona. I worked a guy in Tucson who was using an FT-817 running 5 watts FM into a hastily-constructed wire dipole up about 15 feet. Lots of fun on 10, but it's sorta like fishing--sometimes you've got to do some sitting and waiting until they bite!

73,

Dave K7DAA
http://www.k7daa.com

WA7KKP
08-12-2008, 05:28 PM
I've seen contacts around the clock on 10 . . . even when you'd think the band was dead . . . .

With the summertime Sporadic-E propagation, you never know what's going to happen when. I'd just stick to listening to either 28.400 for SSB calling, and tune the low end for possible beacons, and the high end for FM signals on 29.600/.620/.640/.660/.680. I listen to KQ2H out of NYC day in and day out on 620 here in NW MO.

The most amazing 10 meter QSO I had was years ago, when I was living in Tacoma, WA. I had just tuned up my GE Progress Line on 29.600, and on a lark, had my old college roommate WA7DCF in Boise ID listen on 10 FM . . . it was about 11:30 PM, and there was a pipeline between Boise and Tacoma . . . full quieting signal. We had a ball until about 1 AM when it was time to hug the pillow.

The band may be open, but if no one is listening, how would you know???

Gary WA7KKP

K8JD
08-12-2008, 11:40 PM
I use Beacon Clock to listen for beacons. It is certainly not the only one, and I am sure it may not be the best. You can go here for a look-see and download if you like. It is freeware.

http://www.huntting.com/beaconclock/index.html

I often see responses saying go here, and you can click here and there is an url address coded in. Can anyone tell a simpled minded fellow how to do that. :confused:

These are not the [U]ten meter[U] beacons we are thinking about. The 10M beacons operate between 28.2 and 28.3 and usually transmit callsilgn and sometimes QTH and power levels in a brief message and repeat.

N3VMC
08-13-2008, 02:58 AM
I use Beacon Clock to listen for beacons. It is certainly not the only one, and I am sure it may not be the best. You can go here for a look-see and download if you like. It is freeware.

http://www.huntting.com/beaconclock/index.html

I often see responses saying go here, and you can click here and there is an url address coded in. Can anyone tell a simpled minded fellow how to do that. :confused:

When you goto reply in a thread youll see a gaggle of icons up top....the one that looks like a globe with a chain link in it is the "insert link" tool.

I usually highlight a word or whatever then click on the "insert link" icon....another panel opens up asking you to insert a web URL....just cut and paste what you want in there and you are all done...

Here is the link for Beacon Clock (http://www.huntting.com/beaconclock/index.html).

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