1 month, still no HF contacts

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio' started by KG5ENI, Mar 19, 2015.

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  1. KD3WB

    KD3WB Ham Member QRZ Page

    The frequency on which you are transmitting or listening would be helpful.

  2. KG5ENI

    KG5ENI Ham Member QRZ Page

    Thanks for everyones reply,
    I am apart of the Dallas club, i'll try and get in touch with someone I guess.
    I have ready K0BG.com, a lot, several times.
    I can hear people, I dont know if theyre just really strong signals or not since I have nothing to base it on. I do hear people from washington, ohio, georgia, all over the US. I generally check online band conditions before I try to use a band and I know they havent been great lately, still thought I might get one person though.

    Thanks N2ADV, I'll check our the bands tonight after work and tomorrow and let you know

    I dont have an SWR meter other than what is in the radio which I know isnt ideal but buying an external isnt doable right now. The radio says SWR is pretty low though. guess I would need the meter and a tuner to do a DIY antenna right?
  3. K4KWH

    K4KWH Guest

    See if you can find someone, in or out of the club, with an MFJ analyzer. Check out each antenna thoroughly. If SWR is within the ballpark, well and good. However, a simple SWR meter does not tell the whole story because there is something else that affects antenna performance: feedpoint matching. True, usually, good SWR and feedpoint matching @ 50 ohms is hunky dory...but not always. I could fix your problem pretty quick if you were local, but I can only guess since there could be so many things wrong. Are the incoming signals weak? Could be anything from bad connectors, bad or cheap coax, to an outright short. Most obvious would be mis-tuned antennas.

    The analyzer is the best way to see exactly what your hamsticks are doing.

    As an aside, I must confess that a hamstick would be my LAST choice for a mobile antenna, especially for 75/40 meters. Above those bands, they are sorta.....um, OK There are engineering and physics reasons why hamsticks are.............well, just plain sucky. We won't go deeply into it, but one easy thing to remember is, a hamstick is simply a tightly-wound, small wire, coil on a small diameter "stick". Coils of any sort have resistance to begin with, and the smaller the coil, the smaller the wire, the more resistance (which is why hamsticks sometimes "match" themselves.) This translates into heat instead of RF. With a large coil/long whip combo, this resistance is cut down---which is why they must be matched at the feedpoint to bring the total antenna impedance to 50 ohms. Imagine a water hose. The larger this pipe, or hose, the less "pressure" you have (resistance). Force this same water at the same velocity thru a smaller pipe, the pressure, or resistance is much greater. While not an exact comparison, this might help you to see what is going on with your hamsticks. Remember: you are trying to cut down about 120 feet of antenna (at 75 Meters) and "scrunch" it into a small substitute of around 9 feet!:D The good news is, hamsticks ain't "too" bad at 20 meters and above!

    If you are not getting ANY output (people aren't answering you) there IS something going on there. Your hamsticks should do something! Contact your local ham friends. I'm sure you will work it out!


    KC5JSR likes this.
  4. N4AAB

    N4AAB Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have had similar problems... but I have been trying in the afternoon. I think evening and early morning, and on weekends at the same time areas would work better than what I'm doing now.
  5. W5BIB

    W5BIB Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Make sure you don't have it set for 'split' !!
  6. KG5ENI

    KG5ENI Ham Member QRZ Page

    Thank you all for the helpful tips, I finally made it on the air after getting some help from our clubs Tech Net. I need to still improve it a bit but at least now I'm making some contacts!
  7. K5GHS

    K5GHS Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've been a General since July '14 and have 189 contacts in the log as of yesterday. I'm using a home setup, and until this Monday had an inverted V that was only capable of 10/20. Now I have one capable of 40/20/15/10 without tuning and 17/12 with.

    Why the low "score?" Life. Don't have time to operate all the time. The bands haven't been stellar like others have said. Probably half of my contacts were casual contest contacts where I just submitted a checklog to ensure the people I contacted were properly credited.

    Life, conditions, etc get in the way. Being mobile makes that more of a challenge.

    But being at work 40+ hours a week closes a lot of the window as well. I hope to increase the number of contacts I'm making now having more bands, but don't worry about the numbers. Do the best with what you have. I'd love to have a tower and stuff...but its never probably going to happen, especially living in a rental-but I do my best with what I have.

    Enjoy the hobby how you like and how you can. Don't let other peoples huge contact scores sway ya. I hope someday to maybe have HF in the mobile-you're a step ahead of me there already with anything!
  8. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Conditions, with rare exceptions like the big solar flare last week, have been fine.

    I work 40 hours a week and have a lot of other things to do on weekends, but operate maybe one hour a day or so and make about 150 contacts a week pretty easily, and they're not contest contacts...just chats.

    I call CQ, people answer, and we go from there. Rarely have to call CQ more than once or twice to get a reply on a band that has any propagation. Most of the time, they all have propagation depending on time of day or night. Even after the big solar flare last week, 40m was fine and I made twelve contacts on 40CW when the higher bands were dead. That was from one CQ, and then others answering at the end of each QSO.

    Condx have actually been quite good about 9 out of 10 days the past several months.

    Experience helps of course, but so do real working antennas.
  9. KD8ZMN

    KD8ZMN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Look up his call sign. He finally made 3 contacts on the 22nd! Congrats!
  10. W9AMM

    W9AMM Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Way to go!!! What was the issue? Was there a problem with the setup?

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