why do stronge station sometimes seem of frequency ?

Discussion in 'General Technical Questions and Answers' started by M6LVC, Nov 12, 2017.

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  1. AF7XT

    AF7XT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I learned to "CQ" on crooked numbers.
    You usually get a response from a VFO controlled transmitter.
    If they find you within a few cycles they are an operator.
    If they make no mention of your TX frequency they are an even better operator.

    If you get a response from a digital radio (or read out) they tend to miss by as much as 100cy
    They are no less an operator if they miss
    They are only a bit daft if they ask what frequency you are on.
    They answer the CQ with "you're off frequency" which in that case I am. I move some undetermined crooked number distance from the original CQ and continue.

    I only started this a few years ago after some years else-where/when but early on I remember ...

    CQ... (7.21373...)
    "you're off frequency" no ID
    I'm on 7.21373...
    "you're off frequency" no ID
    QSY...
    CQ... (7.22373...), CQ... (7.21373...)...
    "you're off frequency" no ID
    I'm in 7.22373, what frequency are you on ?
    "you're off frequency" still no ID
    Off to the coffee pot, get distracted by the dog, Karilee, telephone. Coffee gets cold, reheat and back to the radio.
    CQ... (7.22373...), CQ... (7.21373...)...
    "you're off frequency" still no ID
    At this point I think I'm either being hazed or otherwise messed with and have to finally address this.
    Station do you have a call sign ?
    "you're off frequency" again no ID
    I'm the station calling CQ, I can only be on the frequency I'm on, either acknowledge the CQ with your callsign or please leave me be.
    "I don't have to do anything for a station that can't properly operate a radio..."
    :-/

    Frustrating but understandable. I have a small, very small contingent of old school ops around here. A few date back to the '30's . Fine gentlemen for the most part . I steer clear of their rag chew because as humorous as it is to listen to I'm at least 20 years younger. Of their group there is one station that is line of sight to me. He hears everything in my shack. The key thump, the chair squeak, the refrigerator, the dog's toenails on the linoleum. The very same operator that "I don't have to do anything for a station that can't properly operate a radio..." I wait for their table to empty so I can call the one neighbor I do talk to and... "I hear the key thump, the chair squeak, the refrigerator, the dog's toenails on the linoleum. You would think that a real operator would monitor and know that!" I couldn't resist and since I had been listening carefully for over an hour. "I don't have to do anything for a station that can't properly identify their station at least once an hour ..."

    I continue to call CQ on crooked numbers with happily unpredictable results.
     
    KB4QAA, 2E0TZX, W4IOA and 1 other person like this.
  2. WG7X

    WG7X Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Dennis,

    I really like what you said. I too, deliberately operate on "splinter " frequencies.

    Some day, you and I should do a sled on 7.21317 just to get them...

    73 OM!
     
  3. AF7XT

    AF7XT Ham Member QRZ Page

    @WG7X , ...and well met!
    I have a local net or two sked on 80m early then NTN on 7283.5 . I wander around 40m till it predictably fails around 4:00. Then comes the choice to muck about with curious tuner settings on 20m or just go hide in low 80m voice. I don't mess with WARC much as I'm mostly heating coax. 10m to the south is about broken even though I can make 28.4 bypassing the tuner. The just over the edge to the north locally as well as another ridge 10mi south kills that idea. Predictably 10m is fine to the north .
    7.21317 indeed :)
     
  4. WE6C

    WE6C Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm not off frequency, I'm on this frequency!
     
  5. DU7DVE

    DU7DVE Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have an older TS440 and a zero beat on any tx on a frequency will result in my display being .09 kc higher. Some guys I ragchew with can't handle that and get on my case to have my rig tuned so I can have a round number on my display. I have resorted to lying about my display with these couple of guys. LOL
     
  6. AF7XT

    AF7XT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Locally it's easy to 'beat a station. You've talked to at least a couple on the phone.
    A new group of contacts is a different story. Even with a borrowed (web sdr) waterfall no two radios cut the bottom off the audio at the same frequency, so good luck, or is it ?
    Some take to it like mother's milk but others struggle with SSB tuning. I settle into a new frequency and 'beat the clearest signal as best I can then listen for artifacts on the other stations transmissions. I purposely nudge the big knob a bit and see if it reduces a larger or smaller number of the artifacts. By artifacts I mean on LSB you will place a small portion of the remaining carrier into your passband if you are too low and see signal degradation along with an arbitrary high pitch if tuned too high. With practice a 'beat within 10-20 cycles is natural.
    On the other extreme I was on the HW-101 with a local and thought the radio was drifting uncontrollably as we chased each other up band. It wasn't until a few conversations later and a visit to his shack that I saw him consistently tune high and continue to adjust as others did to him. I tried to explain it to him but his answer was "...but then it doesn't sound like sideband".
    Some have an ear for it and all is well. Some don't and won't, can't listen. still others are for whatever reason self regulated to dot zero or dot five. Fine by me as it's only an observation and doesn't affect my operation much, I work them all.
    One last peculiarity I've noticed is with noise blankers in general and those with the noise blanker running above the IF (FT-101, HW, SB, TS hybrids) especially is that in the presence of signals strong enough to trigger gross AGC a distinct distortion is heard. It resembles tuning under a signal by 50-100cy.
    The newer High IF radios as my FT-857 don't suffer as much from this but it is present.
     
  7. KM3F

    KM3F Ham Member QRZ Page

    I agree totally with AF7XT.
    As an operator you can't just dial around and complain about others and not have a responsibility to know what's going on with what you hear and what your own equipment is doing.
    I have a friend that can't tune SSB worth a sh*t and tell him to stay put and I will adjust on him.
    The problem often is they have not understood the concept of replacing the missing carrier to the audio so it sounds correct.
    On todays radios with digital readout, there is no excuse for the readout to be off more than a few cycles if one takes the time to check the calibration against WWV and make corrections in the radio master oscillator.
    In some Icoms, that can be done from the front panel. In others the bottom has to come off the cabinet to access the master oscillator with a tool.
    If there is short term drift then the radio needs service.
    If you have boat anchors, then its up to you to play the game and be on frequency where its appreciated.
    Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2017 at 2:59 AM
  8. 2E0TZX

    2E0TZX Ham Member QRZ Page

    There is no requirement for this in the licensing.
    It seems you are inventing a problem where none exist, and them drawing in some technical info as a form of validation.
     
  9. KM3F

    KM3F Ham Member QRZ Page

    I don't understand your reply about no requirement.
    Of course there it no requirement but our license is based on good operating and engineering practice and rules.
    I'm not making anything up.
    Operate out side 'reason' and you likely will hear about it some time.
    That's how this thread basically started.
    Most of the causes are never talked about so they just keep going on.
    You have a problem with that?
    Like ops who tune up amplifiers on or close to a frequency in use and don't want to hear why it should not be done!
    Good luck.
     
  10. WB5YUZ

    WB5YUZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    These. I guess it's not such a big deal nowadays, as the bands are rarely that crowded anymore, but as recently as the beginning of the current century, the bands were pretty much all busy all the time when they were open, and using only frequencies that ended in 5 or 0 would not have allowed us to shoehorn in as many stations each night as we did by following the 3 KHz rule. Even so, there were a lot of running arguments about "whose" frequency it was, especially on 75m.
     

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