SO-50 status?

Status
Not open for further replies.

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
Anyone heard SO-50 in the last 24 hours?

The last two passes it has made, all I heard has was what sounded like faint violin music, or maybe P25 type data. No voice. I tried hitting it with 71hz, no difference.

Just wondering if anyone else thinks there may be an issue.

Matt
 

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
Ignore my OP. I just made a contact with a 16in whip, so I don't think there is anything wrong. ;-)

Matt
 

AgentCOPP1

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2011
Messages
295
Hey Matt I actually just tried SO-50 and I heard nothing. I've never not been able to hear it and I even pinged it with 72 (or 74, not sure which one I programmed) Hz and it was still quiet. Maybe it can only run off of its solar panels now?
 

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
Hey Matt I actually just tried SO-50 and I heard nothing. I've never not been able to hear it and I even pinged it with 72 (or 74, not sure which one I programmed) Hz and it was still quiet. Maybe it can only run off of its solar panels now?
It could not be that, the two contacts I made after I first noticed the issue were late night passes. Perhaps something in the repeater is failing?

Matt
 

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
The plot thickens ;-) I tossed a wouxun and a RHF40 in my school backpack, and just listened to the 80 degree pass. Granted it is a whip, but I have made contacts with it at much lower elevations. I am right on the west cost, so as it come over the horizon (Going west to east) I hit it with the 74hz tone. Maybe 30sec later several people stated making contacts. About a min after that, (Still at just about 35 degrees) It just cut out, went from s7 to zero. All the way through 80 degrees to the end of the pass, nothing. I did make a recoding on the audio on my phone, and I'm going to see if I can email the people on the bird to see if it cut out for them too, or if I'm just rubbish at tracking the bird ;-).

I think there is an issue with the repeater. After the audio cut out, there was still the weird almost buzzsaw like noise. I will post the recording later. Perhaps someone more knowledgeable then me can tell what is going on.

Matt
 

CommJunkie

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 22, 2008
Messages
901
Location
FM19xr
You guys have any good reference links where I can learn how to talk over the satellites?
 

AgentCOPP1

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2011
Messages
295
Matt, that's really strange. When I tried it, it almost sounded to me like the repeater was trying to come through but couldn't get much juice out. Like there would be a small break in the noise level which might indicate that a signal is trying to get through.

The best way to test it is to get a separate tx and rx radio and see if you can hear yourself. I would like to take a look at that audio when you get it up.

According to the OSCAR satellite status page, SO-50 still seems to be doing good but that doesn't necessarily mean its operation isn't intermittent. I would email AMSAT but their website code is so screwed up that it won't let me. Nonetheless, I'll keep trying the bird. It wouldn't surprise me if it's smoking out on us because it's over 11 years old. Let's hope not because it's the last FM satellite out there.

Commjunkie, go here. This nice lady tells you exactly how to do it with nice diagrams. If you have any questions, you can post it here or PM me and I'd be happy to help. Unless we can determine that me and Matt just suck at using the satellites, I'd stay away from SO-50 right now because it appears to be acting intermittent. Other possibilities are VO-52, FO-29 and AO-7. You might want to try FO-29 because it's a simple SSB VHF/UHF transponder but you need a small SSB radio to do it.
 

AgentCOPP1

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2011
Messages
295
67 to open the squelch, but 74.4 to arm the timer. Good to hear that it's doing good for you. I'll again try it as soon as I get a good pass.
 

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
SO-50 needs a 67 tone to activate it....made a contact this evening.

John KD8BIN
Actually, it needs a 74.4 tone to activate it/reset the 10 minute timer, and a 67 tone to open the repeater.

The issue is not that we can not use it at all, but rather it seems very intermittent.

I will try to post that audio tomorrow. I'm quite sick and have been away from a proper computer.

Matt

EDIT: Just saw that K6LTC beat me to it ;-)
 

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
Here is the audio, maybe someone more knowledgeable then me can tell what is going on. Sorry for hosting it on my site, I promise I'm not a hacker, I just don't want to deal with something like soundcloud right now. Note that dead space before I head anything and after have been removed.

matts-photo.com/so50.mp3

Some Notes
0:00 - About one minute after the beginning of the pass according to my tracking app.
0:30 - The first of the buzz-saw noises.
0:47 - I hit the bird with 74.4.
1:01 - I think I heard a voice, maybe not though.
1:20 - two guys start to make a contact.
1:59 - last voice I hear. - This was a west to east pass, and I'm on the west cost, so there should be contacts for at least 5 more minutes.
2:03 - I throw out my call.
2:24 - I go all the way 15 khz both directions just to make sure my Doppler is not off.
3:30 - I check the tracking app because I can't believe there are not more contacts. At this point I still have about a 70 degree angle on the bird.
4:24 - I give my call again.
4:45 - Checking the tracking app again, still have a 50 degree angle.
5:40 - I check the app yet again. When I go back to the radio, the buzz-saw noises are gone. I have cut the recording here.

Matt
 
Last edited:

techman210

Member
Joined
May 28, 2011
Messages
180
Location
San Bernardino County
The "buzz-saw" noises you were hearing are from radar, the primary user of the 420-450 MHZ band. It's been around for years. Its just not always turned on, and most of it is from military vessels at sea and sometimes, in port.
 
Last edited:

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
The "buzz-saw" noises you were hearing is from radar, the primary user of the band. It's been around for years. Its just not always turned on, and most of it is from military vessels at sea and sometimes, in port.
Interesting. I've never heard them before, these last times I only heard them when so-50 was overhead. I guess my ears hear what my brain wants them to ;-)
 

K5MPH

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2003
Messages
1,314
Location
Brownsville Texas,On The Border By The Sea.
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8C148 Safari/6533.18.5)

Can't wait until they send up fox-1 in November of this year going to be a repeater in th space hope this one will be as good as so-51 was.......
 
Last edited:

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8C148 Safari/6533.18.5)

Can't wait until they send up fox-1 in November of this year going to be a repeater in th space hope this one will be as good as so-51 was.......
I'm looking forward as well. Also LituanicaSAT-1 also has a FM repeater, and is due to be released from the ISS late next month (Feb).

Matt
 

K5MPH

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2003
Messages
1,314
Location
Brownsville Texas,On The Border By The Sea.
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8C148 Safari/6533.18.5)

photoguy2 said:
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8C148 Safari/6533.18.5)

Can't wait until they send up fox-1 in November of this year going to be a repeater in th space hope this one will be as good as so-51 was.......
I'm looking forward as well. Also LituanicaSAT-1 also has a FM repeater, and is due to be released from the ISS late next month (Feb).

Matt
I forgot about that one thanks for the heads up.....
 

AgentCOPP1

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2011
Messages
295
Well Matt I listened to it and that is very peculiar. It sounds like the two people you heard were having trouble as well because they couldn't get a good QSO. I've never heard that buzzsaw sound before but since you're in CA (or near it, can't remember where exactly you are), it would make sense that it's radar, and it would also make sense that I never hear it because I'm not near water.

I've got a good pass coming up in a few hours, I'll let you know what happens. It's also good to hear we're getting another FM satellite up there. I'll definitely be giving that one a go.
 

photoguy2

Member
Joined
Apr 3, 2013
Messages
125
Well Matt I listened to it and that is very peculiar. It sounds like the two people you heard were having trouble as well because they couldn't get a good QSO. I've never heard that buzzsaw sound before but since you're in CA (or near it, can't remember where exactly you are), it would make sense that it's radar, and it would also make sense that I never hear it because I'm not near water.

I've got a good pass coming up in a few hours, I'll let you know what happens. It's also good to hear we're getting another FM satellite up there. I'll definitely be giving that one a go.
I live 30 miles from San Francisco, and the Alameda docks and shipyard, so it's probably radar.

If your talking about the pass starting around 20:08 PST tonight, I was going it give it a try too.

Matt
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top