2 Meter SSB?

Discussion in 'VHF/UHF - 50Mhz and Beyond' started by N4MTB, Aug 19, 2018.

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  1. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    IF he OP only has a vertical antenna, he is likely to hear few, if any SSB signals, even if the band is "alive" with FM and digital signals.
  2. WA8UEG

    WA8UEG XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I live at the apex of a 2,000 ft mountain, on 2 meters I run a IC251 into a TE Systems amp at around 250 watts and the antenna is a 13 element beam at about 65' on top of the tower. On 6 meters I use a FT5000 at 200 watts and a 7 element wide spaced beam. If I call CQ on 6 I will get several calls from all over the east coast, If I get on 146.52 which I use with a Icom V-8000 that can generate different power levels (the IC-251 is only 10 watts) I get 350 watts out of the amp and I will almost always create a pileup with people calling but if I get on 144.200 SSB I seldom get a response, occasionally but not very often will someone respond.

    Most rigs have 6 meters now a days and there are a lot of 2 meter FM rigs but not a lot of 2 meter SSB radios connected to good antennas correctly polarized with enough power to reach out and touch someone.

    The vast majority of my 2 meter SSB contacts occur during any VHF contest when the big gun dedicated VHF enthusiasts are on.
  3. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm a bit confused. On 144.200 MHz SSB, are you using a horizontally or polarized antenna?:confused:
  4. WA8UEG

    WA8UEG XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    The beam is on a side mount away from the tower and other antennas and can be tilted so that I can have vertical or horizontal polarization.
  5. KE0OFN

    KE0OFN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yea, I agree with what most have stated. Ya have to have horizontal polarization, otherwise you're wasting your efforts. I know a year or two back, MFJ was making a 2m ssb only rig. I was planning to buy one. They apparently had some issues and it isn't available, nowadays at all. I called them about a year ago and they didn't know when or even if, they would re-start production. I truly wish someone would produce a 2m all mode. At least a 2m ssb radio. For now, looking for an OLD 2m all mode is a real problem. A lot of us newbie techs, don't want to lay out $1000. or more for a "real radio." It was a huge expense for me to get the yeasu 857d. Lots of folks don't care for the 857 but it's gonna hafta do, for me. 2m ssb was my goal from the very start. The (1980) kenwood tr-9000 I eventually gave to my son, was/is a great little radio. I played with it a month or more before giving it to my son. I strongly recommend the homebrew antenna directions by M0UKD. com I've been thrilled with the results. It's originally designed to be a back-packing antenna. I just made it a more permanent install. It's optimized for 2m ssb.
  6. W2WDX

    W2WDX Subscriber QRZ Page

    See ... I cheat. I use a Cushcraft A148-20T 10el dual-polarity yagi at about 50'. I can run horizontal for SSB and with a flip of a switch go vertical for FM. I also use a VHFDesign 2m QRO EME LNA (receive preamplifier) with a .4dB noise figure which has built-in relays for TX-RX rated for QRO. I also use a custom built TX/RX sequencer for the LNA, as well as my Commander 144-VHF kilowatt 2m amplifier. I will tell you that a mast-mounted preamplifier with a very low noise figure makes a significant difference on not only receive gain, but noise floor. You are not amplifying cable noise which can be substantial on 2M even with good coaxial. I use Times LMR-400 feeding a remote coaxial switch mounted at the base of the 2M yagi mount. I can switch to my yagi(s), my 2M loops, and the Cushcraft ARX-2 vertical and all use the same preamplifier. Minimizing the 2M noise floor, which includes a smart grounding scheme overall in the station, makes or breaks making contacts on 2m SSB.

    If you can't hear them, you can't work them. So having the ability to have dual polarization, and using multiple antenna types (yagi's, loops, and verticals) with a low noise floor makes working SSB DX on 2M a practical reality, as well as improving general FM operation either simplex or to distant repeaters.
    Last edited: May 25, 2019 at 11:30 PM
  7. KE0OFN

    KE0OFN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Thanks for your input. Some of what you're saying is going over my head. I need to stay with technician class stuff for reasons I won't go into here. I am considering doing a 2 yagi stack of my little homebrew antennae. I'm just not sure how to go about the connection of the two antennae to my DX engineering brand lmr 400. I'm very new to ham radio but quite old in life. Best as I can determine, a basic so-239 tee connector with 4' 8" of 50 ohm coax to each antenna would work reasonably well???? I've never stacked antennae, so I'm a little clueless. Just what I've gathered from other more experienced hams. I only have a cheap tv rotator, so I'm trying to keep the weight low and the length of beam low. $$$ is always an issue. What I have now, works reasonably well. Like everyone else, I'd like to do even better. Several contacts at 250 mile range and even better occasionally. Any tips are appreciated.

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