VLF stations?

Discussion in 'The Low Bands - 630/2200 Meters - VLF' started by N3DT, Dec 25, 2017.

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  1. N3DT

    N3DT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yes, there's nothing wrong with the way the stations send the code. You just need more practice so you can tell the spaces. Recording and looking at them may be a good idea. You should be able to see the difference in the space between the characters and the letter. Listen to that B, the space from the first dah to the dit is shorter than between the last dit and the next dah (the O). Keep trying.
  2. K8JD

    K8JD Ham Member QRZ Page

    There is more space between the letters than the dits and dahs of each letter, and with a bit of listening, you should be able to pick out the space between the letters.

    This mid day, around 16:00 UT, I took a quick tune across the VLF band I was able to copy :
    245 ZYE (located in ) ON, 254 MB MI, 263 YGK ON, 263 LQL OH, 266 ZHM ON, 269 FN MI, 272 YQA ON. 276 YEL ON, 280 ADG MI, 283, PT ON, 317 ZZR ON, 326 VV ON, 329 THN ON, 332 PH MI, 335 ZKF ON, 338 DE MI, 350 D7 ON, 353, QG ON, 362 AK OH, 363 SB ON, 366 YMW QC, 368 ZYZ ON, 375 7B ON, 382 XU ON, 495 OO ON, 404 ZR ON, 419 RYS MI,
    Good signals from Northern Ontario, across MI and OH and East to to Quebec province of Canada.
    Using my old FT990 radio and a 160M halfwave dipole antenna hanging in trees at 35 Ft..
    Good Listening to all !


    Wow, that's a list.

    Here in Las Vegas, NV, with a FT-950 and an active mini-whip antenna @ 15 feet, I can tune 5 NDBs regularly.
  4. N5MRG

    N5MRG Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've been involved with NDBs for some time.
    Most of the transmitters were 25 watts and consisted of two excitors. One on the carrier and another that was keyed 1khz away. This created the audio tone you hear.
    I chased many beacons down using a loop and a simple wire laying on the ground. Took many pics that have been lost. I had a ton of fun DFing them sometimes hundreds of miles.
    Sadly, most have been decommissioned. Recently I noticed a local one formerly IDing as "EF" in Mckinney Texas has gone SK.
    Many of these were very simple installs using short too loaded towers or basic Tee Marconi antennas with the transmitter located in a dog house.
    Fun memories chasing them down.
  5. ND5Y

    ND5Y Ham Member QRZ Page

    This is something that is actually dying faster than ham radio.
  6. WA4ILH

    WA4ILH Subscriber QRZ Page

    When I was working as an electronics technician for the National Weather Service in Midland Texas back in the late 80s, the FAA next door started getting complains that their NDB had greatly reduced range. They went out to the site and found that a contractor had cut many of the ground counterpoise leads with a ditcher. What was interesting, in the 2 or 3 day time period it took to repair the ground system, they later received a request for a QSL reception report from a SWL living in Nebraska.
    Tom WA4ILH
  7. W0PV

    W0PV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Every winter at the end of the last few years I spin the dial down and see what can be heard. Just using a Top loaded "Marconi" T vertical about 35 ft high tuned for 160 or 80m and my crusty old IC-781 which has a fine low band receiver but has now gone quiet :(

    Here is a list of stations heard the last time(s). Of course my fav 's are not so much the beacons but the LW broadcasters, especially Radio Medi, the megawatt blow-torch of Morocco.

    12-22/2016 0215-0230Z
    171 Radio Med Morrocco S2 mostly clear AM
    326 PKZ Pansacola - Pickens
    329 CH - Charlotte
    432 IZN Lincolntown NC
    12-24-2016 0345Z
    198 DIW Dixon NC
    209 HOE Homerville GA
    257 SQT Melbourne Satellite FL
    260 MTH Marathon FL
    332 FIS Key West
    344 JA Jacksonville FL
    346 THJ Laurel-Tallahala MS
    349 AAF Apalachicola FL
    353 VV Greensboro-Junne GA
    353 LI Little Rock AR
    368 TP Tampa Van Dyke
    376 BHC Baxley GA
    379 BRA Asheville-Broad River NC
    385 EMR Augusta-Emory GA
    400 XW Flemingsburg KY

    Jan 9 2017
    SUR 362 Fitzgerald GA
    CYR 338 Cairo-Grady GA
  8. KA1MDA

    KA1MDA Ham Member QRZ Page

    The TS-2000 actually performs extremely well as a receiver for low frequencies. The reason it appears deaf is due to a 20 dB high pass attenuator for the AM broadcast band. The attentuator can be disabled by simply moving a jumper. I have no problems with overload from any AM stations where I am located with the attenuator bypassed.

    My HF antenna is a ground mounted Hustler 6BTV with approx 28 buried random-length radials (28'-85'). Using the TS-2000X, I can easily hear WWVB at 60 KHz pretty much any time- day or night, summer or winter. I also have no problem receiving NAVTEX broadcasts on 516 KHz as far as Puerto Rico, Bermuda, and New Orleans (I am in New England). Also receive lots of NDBs ranging from Canada to Puerto Rico.

    For comparison, my SDRPlay RSPduo has yet to hear anything on those frequencies with the same antenna. I also had an Icom 746 and a 706MK2G in the past, and neither one of those received anything below the AMBCB with the same antenna. One advantage the TS2000 has is the ability to utilize the rx preamp on those frequencies, while Icom disables the preamp below 160 meters.

    Previously, I had a Kenwood TS-430S. Although I had a different antenna at the time (making comparisons to the above radios impossible), it also received lots of NDBs.
  9. KA0HCP

    KA0HCP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Yep. Ham radio has been dying for over a hundred years and will still be dying in another hundred. sheesh.

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