Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

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Jamie
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Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by Jamie » Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:44 am

I got my ticket too long ago, and haven't played much with my gear until recently...I'm loving exploring/using my 2m gear, but am thinking about expanding my capabilities in HAM...

What frequency, open to technician class, will allow me to reach out to other ZSers in the Northeast...I would like to have the ability to reach out 300-400 miles without the use of repeaters...

I was thinking 10M, but don't know if 6M or 20M would be more appropriate...any help will be appreciated...including specific equipment suggestions.

Thanks,

Jamie
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by TacAir » Thu Apr 12, 2012 9:57 am

Band Frequencies Mode Notes
80 Meters 3.525 - 3.600 CW 200-watt limit
40 Meters 7.025 - 7.125 CW 200-watt limit
15 Meters 21.025 -200 CW 200-watt limit
10 Meters 28.100 - 28.300 CW, RTTY, Data 200-watt limit
28.300 - 28.500 CW, Phone, Image 200-watt limit
Above 50 MHz All amateur privileges

How good is your CW?

Phone only, you are looking at 10M. I would suggest looking on fleaBay for used equipment, or for a more reasonable price point, QRZ.com and eHam.net both have used gear for sale.
Check that the equipment runs off of 12VDC, given the meme of this board. Most of the newer gear have general coverage receive in addition to the WRAC bands.

It may be worth doing a little study and upgrading to a General ticket.
http://www.hamuniverse.com/frequencyallocations.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
A lot more phone privileges.
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Jamie
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by Jamie » Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:14 am

TacAir wrote:It may be worth doing a little study and upgrading to a General ticket.
http://www.hamuniverse.com/frequencyallocations.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
A lot more phone privileges.
I think I'll do that...now to do a bunch of practice tests...

Jamie
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by Jamie » Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:25 am

Assuming General class license, what band would you recommend for 300-500 mile range, without repeaters?

Jamie
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by TacAir » Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:26 am

Jamie wrote:
TacAir wrote:It may be worth doing a little study and upgrading to a General ticket.
http://www.hamuniverse.com/frequencyallocations.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
A lot more phone privileges.
I think I'll do that...now to do a bunch of practice tests...

Jamie
Good luck! Been trying to get my son to upgrade, he was first licensed at 10 y/o as a Novice and has the code part, but getting him to take the General test... Oh well. Either you see it as fun or now.

Let us know how you do!

300 to 500 miles comms is covered under the NVIS thread. 40 meters and a NVIS antenna setup.
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by KYZHunters » Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:34 am

Jamie,
Good discussion of Near Vertical Incidence Skywave (NVIS) here http://zombiehunters.org/forum/viewtopi ... 42&t=90941

OP was asking about 6 and 10 meters, but for what he is looking for, an NVIS approach on 40 or 80 meters is the sweet spot.
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by aa1pr » Thu Apr 12, 2012 2:26 pm

Jamie if you go with 10m you will most likely miss the stations close(st)(er) to you. On ten the signals carry over the terrain nicely at best (on ssb) and around 100 miles +/- if makes it first hop. I have found that stations within the first 50 miles are no problem and beyond that out to say 200+ it begins to pick back up, however aurora or propagation can & does change this when you least expect.

why do you only want 300-400 miles I have to ask?

75/80 will easily give you this during the day time

I prefer 40m above most of the other bands however the new 60m & the old 17m bands have their advantages too

honestly I say get on the HF bands and play around, what I prefer and the next guy are not always going to appeal to you

one really has to take into account the maxium and minumum usable frequeincies at any given time

here is a link that can help you out:
http://www.spacew.com/www/realtime.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I can always try to work you on the bands if you let me know in advance since we are somewhat close

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Jamie
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by Jamie » Thu Apr 12, 2012 3:26 pm

Thanks for the answer,

I was thinking of 300+ so as to reach family/friends in NYC, along with Toronto and Bangor.

j
aa1pr wrote:Jamie if you go with 10m you will most likely miss the stations close(st)(er) to you. On ten the signals carry over the terrain nicely at best (on ssb) and around 100 miles +/- if makes it first hop. I have found that stations within the first 50 miles are no problem and beyond that out to say 200+ it begins to pick back up, however aurora or propagation can & does change this when you least expect.

why do you only want 300-400 miles I have to ask?

75/80 will easily give you this during the day time

I prefer 40m above most of the other bands however the new 60m & the old 17m bands have their advantages too

honestly I say get on the HF bands and play around, what I prefer and the next guy are not always going to appeal to you

one really has to take into account the maxium and minumum usable frequeincies at any given time

here is a link that can help you out:
http://www.spacew.com/www/realtime.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I can always try to work you on the bands if you let me know in advance since we are somewhat close
"I don't want to survive. I want to live. " - Captain B. McCrea

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by gary in ohio » Fri Apr 13, 2012 5:04 am

Jamie wrote:I got my ticket too long ago, and haven't played much with my gear until recently...I'm loving exploring/using my 2m gear, but am thinking about expanding my capabilities in HAM... What frequency, open to technician class, will allow me to reach out to other ZSers in the Northeast...I would like to have the ability to reach out 300-400 miles without the use of repeaters...
Jamie
A tech license is NOT going to give your reliable 300 mile range.. 10m and 6m is capable of that range but bands are not reliable enough to count on a communications path. 2m with a band opening or tropo ducting cant allow 2m to go that far but again not reliably.

You need to upgrade to make that path work.

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by charlie505 » Fri Apr 13, 2012 5:56 am

I have my Tech and studying for my General License

I just ordered an F857D. I want to be able to hit people in Uptate NY, Long Island and PA.

Unfortunatly I live in a high-rise co-op with no balcony - anyone have advice on an antenna?

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by Jamie » Fri Apr 13, 2012 7:41 am

I agree, and am planning on getting my General license...thinking that a 40m base setup in my house would give me the reach that I'm looking for...south to NYC, west to Toronto, east to Bangor...to some degree, my thinking is that in a significant and enduring emergency, anything beyond that radius is largely irrelevant...

J
gary in ohio wrote:
Jamie wrote:I got my ticket too long ago, and haven't played much with my gear until recently...I'm loving exploring/using my 2m gear, but am thinking about expanding my capabilities in HAM... What frequency, open to technician class, will allow me to reach out to other ZSers in the Northeast...I would like to have the ability to reach out 300-400 miles without the use of repeaters...
Jamie
A tech license is NOT going to give your reliable 300 mile range.. 10m and 6m is capable of that range but bands are not reliable enough to count on a communications path. 2m with a band opening or tropo ducting cant allow 2m to go that far but again not reliably.

You need to upgrade to make that path work.
"I don't want to survive. I want to live. " - Captain B. McCrea

Image
My Blog and website, dealing largely with my writing projects...I've published two novels, "Here Be Monsters" and "Caretakers", along with a pair of eBooks, "Mickey Slips" and "Bound for Home"...check them out!

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by ghost792 » Fri Apr 13, 2012 9:28 am

charlie505 wrote:I have my Tech and studying for my General License

I just ordered an F857D. I want to be able to hit people in Uptate NY, Long Island and PA.

Unfortunatly I live in a high-rise co-op with no balcony - anyone have advice on an antenna?
Slinky dipoles can be effective apartment antennas. It didn't work out too well for me, because I'm in a basement, but they are cheap enough to make that it's worth trying.

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by CitizenZ » Fri Apr 13, 2012 7:23 pm

Even with just a tech license you can learn to use repeaters (2 meter - 10 meter), echolink and other interface connections that can multiply the range of a standard HT or mobile. Especially if a computer is connected to the radio. . With these you can use an HT to talk around the world. The systems are very robust, most have independent power and have not yet been knocked out. You can also use the computer to do morse code on HF with just a tech license.


charlie505 wrote:I have my Tech and studying for my General License

I just ordered an F857D. I want to be able to hit people in Uptate NY, Long Island and PA.

Unfortunatly I live in a high-rise co-op with no balcony - anyone have advice on an antenna?
For an apartment with no balcony... I don't think you will be able to get 300+ mile range. A large antenna firing out the window will give good performance, but 300 + miles will only occur with the rare skip. I'd suggest installing the radio in the car with a decent HF whip or NVIS whip. Then you can get that range. In the apt I would suggest you stick to VHF/UHF bands and learn to hit the local repeaters.
"Victory awaits him who has everything in order, luck people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck"- The South Pole, Roald Amundsen - 1912

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by TacAir » Sat Apr 14, 2012 12:08 am

charlie505 wrote:I have my Tech and studying for my General License

I just ordered an F857D. I want to be able to hit people in Uptate NY, Long Island and PA.

Unfortunatly I live in a high-rise co-op with no balcony - anyone have advice on an antenna?

If you have an outside window...

http://www.mfjenterprises.com/Product.p ... d=MFJ-1622" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Clamps to a window frame. MFJ doesn't get a lot of love here, but I've had good luck with the brand.

YMMV
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by charlie505 » Sat Apr 14, 2012 6:41 am

I am so fustrated by my antenna search that I pretty much decided to put the rig in my car and then just pull out of the building garage and park over by the hudson river (a few blocks from my apartment) and go from there. I am sure some cops will stop by to see what I am doing!!!!

I was looking at the MJF apartment antenna but it will not work with my window frames, also my windows are recessed - I was thinking of putting it on a painters pole and extending it out!

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by TacAir » Sat Apr 14, 2012 11:15 am

charlie505 wrote:I am so fustrated by my antenna search that I pretty much decided to put the rig in my car and then just pull out of the building garage and park over by the hudson river (a few blocks from my apartment) and go from there. I am sure some cops will stop by to see what I am doing!!!!

I was looking at the MJF apartment antenna but it will not work with my window frames, also my windows are recessed - I was thinking of putting it on a painters pole and extending it out!

Or a piece of 2x4.

You could also reel out a thin piece of wire with a small fishing weight (at night) and try using that with low power.
TacAir - I'd rather be a disappointed pessimist than a horrified optimist
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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by CitizenZ » Sat Apr 14, 2012 5:52 pm

charlie505 wrote:I am so fustrated by my antenna search...

What is frustrating you? What kind of antennas are you looking at or what do you want it to do? All antennas have limitations. Finding one to do what you need shouldn't be difficult, as long as your expectations are reasonable.
"Victory awaits him who has everything in order, luck people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck"- The South Pole, Roald Amundsen - 1912

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by charlie505 » Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:35 pm

CitizenZ wrote:
charlie505 wrote:I am so fustrated by my antenna search...

What is frustrating you? What kind of antennas are you looking at or what do you want it to do? All antennas have limitations. Finding one to do what you need shouldn't be difficult, as long as your expectations are reasonable.
I live in a high rise with recessed windows and concrete and steel costruction. Nothing works indoors.

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by rpc » Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:54 am

All of the following numbers are approximate, but they will give you a general idea.

On all of the HF bands, there will be a "skip zone" to which communications will be very unreliable. For example, on 20 meters, communication will be very unreliable for stations less than 500 miles away, because that is in your "skip zone"--the signal will skip over them, so to speak. Under 20 miles will be no problem, since it will be line of sight. (Sometimes, this is incorrectly called "ground wave".) Also, over 500 miles would be quite reliable. But 20-500 miles would be very unreliable. 10 meters (the only HF band on which you can currently use voice) would be similar.

On 40 meters, the "skip zone" would generally be about 200 miles during the day, and about 400 miles at night. So it would probably be a good choice during the day. A low horizontal antenna might improve matters, though. During the day, there would be little if any skip zone on 80 meters, although 300 miles might be too far away for reliable communications. The skip zone would be about 200 miles at night.

Your best bet would be 40 meters during the day, and 80 or 160 at night. You can currently use CW on 80 and 40. In fact, with CW, 5 watts would be more than adequate for reliable communications. PSK31 would also work well at those power levels (although in an emrgency, you would also need to be able to power a computer, which would use more power than the radio.) (Also, you can't use PSK31 on those bands with your current license. You can use it on 10 meters but that doesn't help you here.) For voice, for reliable communications over that range, I would want 100 watts.

Another possibility to consider is SSB on 2 meters. With a good antenna system (a fairly large beam at a high location) on either end, you could probably have reliable communications over that distance. But it would require the antenna at each end, and if either antenna blew down, you would be out of luck.

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by daddysjeep09 » Wed Apr 18, 2012 7:39 am

TacAir wrote:
Phone only, you are looking at 10M. I would suggest looking on fleaBay for used equipment, or for a more reasonable price point, QRZ.com and eHam.net both have used gear for sale.
You can also try Ham club websites. I've found a few that have a classified sections. I just searched HAM club and my zip code/state to find them.

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by ghost792 » Wed Apr 18, 2012 6:24 pm

daddysjeep09 wrote:
TacAir wrote:
Phone only, you are looking at 10M. I would suggest looking on fleaBay for used equipment, or for a more reasonable price point, QRZ.com and eHam.net both have used gear for sale.
You can also try Ham club websites. I've found a few that have a classified sections. I just searched HAM club and my zip code/state to find them.
QTH.com has classifieds, also.

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Re: Technician Class Interstate Communication Setup

Post by CitizenZ » Wed Apr 18, 2012 7:56 pm

charlie505 wrote:
CitizenZ wrote:
charlie505 wrote:I am so fustrated by my antenna search...
What is frustrating you? What kind of antennas are you looking at or what do you want it to do? All antennas have limitations. Finding one to do what you need shouldn't be difficult, as long as your expectations are reasonable.
I live in a high rise with recessed windows and concrete and steel costruction. Nothing works indoors.
Yes it can.
It seems you're looking for an antenna to perform miracles. There are radios and antennas that work indoors. Even in a high rise, but it won't be 300+miles on HF. As I said before, use VHF/UHF freq's and learn to hit repeaters. With just a handheld 5w radio you can hit a repeater that will let you talk around the world, once you learn how. Even from inside your apartment. If you can stick a whip antenna or wire out the window then you might be able to use some HF like 6 meter - 20 meter. That would open up more options if possible.
"Victory awaits him who has everything in order, luck people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck"- The South Pole, Roald Amundsen - 1912

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