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Propagation Forcast

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Saint

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Is it just my set up, Icom r75 with 100ft of speaker wire facing north, I'm on the 4th floor and the 100ft of wire is out on my balcony.

I have not been able to pick up very much on the bands this summer compared to last year, I had real good luck picking up everything, shortwave broadcast and utility station but this year I have a lot of background noise and many of the signal are very week, can someone tell me what to expect in the coming months as far as Propagation conditions, Also I have just ordered a EF-SWL Antenna and will be getting this in a couple of weeks, hope this will be a better antenna then the 100ft of speaker wire.

I am in Fort Erie Ontario Canada 20 miles from Niagara Falls Ontario

Any information appreciated
thanks, Steve
 

ka3jjz

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That's a real tall order - going ahead several months with any reliability is virtually impossible. As a general rule, though, as we get closer and closer to winter, the low bands should start to quiet down, and there will be a distinct pattern to what you hear, depending on how the daylight and darkness patterns are. For example, in the winter, East Coast folks get the Africans usually before their regular sign offs - and we'll get them back again around 03-04 UT when they sign on - just before their local daybreak takes the signal out.

Now that all depends on solar activity - and you might have noticed that we took both a M5.3 and X2.1 flare in the last 24 hours, so things are going to be very dicey for a few days. A M-class flare is a relatively mid sized one - but a X class flare is pretty heavy duty, as it produces a large amount of X Rays and other radiation that will definitely disturb the ionosphere.

Becoming aware of solar activity, and its attendant effects on propagation is critical to understanding what and from where you hear things, in the short and long term. The Spaceweather.com website usually have news when a flare or two pops up; and this site (you must allow Flash to run when viewing it) will give you the basics of how the sun and earth interact...

Propagation Primer - Flash Movie by AE4RV

HF isn't plug and play like scanners - you must also be aware of this...best regards...Mike
 

ka3jjz

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Re the antenna situation - the PAR may help if the noise is locally generated - but the bottom line is the best way to attenuate (you'll never ever get rid of it all, unless you move way the heck out to the woods...) the noise is to feed the antenna with coax (where possible), and get it away from the house, as far as you can. There have been whole books written on the subject, so I won't even try to summarize all the possible noise sources here.

You might consider using a 9:1 transformer on your current antenna and using coax on that. Having 2 antennas pointed in different directions, assuming you have the room, is not a bad idea at all. A signal arriving at your location might not be heard well from one direction, but much better from another. There are a couple of places where you can buy pre-made ones (Palomar and WinRadio come to mind), and there are several plans out on the net for the so-called 'Magnetic Longwire Balun'.

A piece of wire strung out will pick up lots- noise included. You need to do some work to knock the noise level down, in most cases.

By the way, since I see you're in Ontario, you might consider joining up with the Ontario DX Association. Great bunch of guys - and if you run into Sheldon Harvey, tell him Mike Agner says hi.

best regards..Mike
 

Saint

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Information

Re the antenna situation - the PAR may help if the noise is locally generated - but the bottom line is the best way to attenuate (you'll never ever get rid of it all, unless you move way the heck out to the woods...) the noise is to feed the antenna with coax (where possible), and get it away from the house, as far as you can. There have been whole books written on the subject, so I won't even try to summarize all the possible noise sources here.

You might consider using a 9:1 transformer on your current antenna and using coax on that. Having 2 antennas pointed in different directions, assuming you have the room, is not a bad idea at all. A signal arriving at your location might not be heard well from one direction, but much better from another. There are a couple of places where you can buy pre-made ones (Palomar and WinRadio come to mind), and there are several plans out on the net for the so-called 'Magnetic Longwire Balun'.

A piece of wire strung out will pick up lots- noise included. You need to do some work to knock the noise level down, in most cases.

By the way, since I see you're in Ontario, you might consider joining up with the Ontario DX Association. Great bunch of guys - and if you run into Sheldon Harvey, tell him Mike Agner says hi.

best regards..Mike
Thanks Mike for the information, I have my wire antenna fed to the Icom r75 from a 6 foot peace of coax into the back of the Icom r75 and also have a Balun hooked up, The Noise is not from my apartment or the apartment building, I just received an up date on my EF-SWL Antenna and it just went through Canada Customs so I may be getting it in a couple of days. I will try setting one up facing North and the other one facing West so I have two antenna's to choose from.
Steve
 
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