ATV activity 7/5/17

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GaryM1EGI
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Joined: Mon Jun 29, 2015 8:55 pm

ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by GaryM1EGI » Sun May 07, 2017 8:58 pm

Hello everyone.

I thought I'd report on my findings today from my portable site (IO93fl - this is near Grenoside woods), after doing some analogue tests today with M0DTS/P, G8VAT/P, G8VDP & G4TMZ my attention turned to digital tests.
As I warmed up in the car I turned on the laptop and proceeded to check my mini-tuner was working correctly, after a slight problem which was soon fixed with the help of Rob, I powered up the pre-amp and directed the plate antenna towards GB3VL, result! fully locked signal at -70dbm and pictures from Tony G0UOZ.

Spurred on by the results I swung the beam towards YT and clicked the pre-set, again fully locked signal at -70dbm.
At this point I removed the pre-amp and repeated the tests, again, I was rewarded with fully locked signals but at a slightly reduced signal strength of -80dbm on both YT and VL!.

With this in mind, I aim to get back to the portable site very soon and see how well I can access YT using analogue, this should prove to be a very good benchmark prior to the planned upgrade works.

It would be nice to see more activity from YT, and if I can gain access from my portable site, at least I will have a number of options when it comes to finding stations to work.

73s Gary M1EGI

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G8NZR
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Location: Mirfield

Re: ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by G8NZR » Mon May 08, 2017 9:32 am

Hi Gary

Thanks for the report (pre-updates). Your location seems to agree with the expected coverage map!! Before and after results will be interesting if you get chance 8-)

The update will be done sometime this month - I've been a bit unwell for a couple of weeks, and due to work commitments, it made things very awkward to try and get everything completed during April.

I had a chat with Graham, and we decided to do it in two stages with the 2/70 antenna install first. Then shortly after, add the RX/Logic cabinet as we have to remove the existing GB3YT box first to change out the general wiring, SMS controller and fit a bigger shelf. We would be struggling to complete all this in one visit. The new box has been on test for a while and received a few drones!

Hopefully, the main improvements will be in better receive sensitivity and the addition of 70cm RX. Myself and Graham have both got 70cm digital TV transmitters working, so we will be trying it mobile shortly.

Once we've installed everything, we should get more spare time to use it!

73, Kay

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Wolfie
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Re: ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by Wolfie » Mon May 08, 2017 10:18 am

G8NZR wrote:
> The update will be done sometime this month - I've been a bit unwell for a
> couple of weeks, and due to work commitments, it made things very awkward
> to try and get everything completed during April.

Sorry to hear that Kay, hope you're well on the mend now. I thought things had gone a little quiet(er). :D

> I had a chat with Graham, and we decided to do it in two stages with the
> 2/70 antenna install first. Then shortly after, add the RX/Logic cabinet as
> we have to remove the existing GB3YT box first to change out the general
> wiring, SMS controller and fit a bigger shelf. We would be struggling to
> complete all this in one visit. The new box has been on test for a while
> and received a few drones!

Could that be regarded as "Activity", hehe.. (sorry couldn't resist that one).

> Hopefully, the main improvements will be in better receive sensitivity and
> the addition of 70cm RX. Myself and Graham have both got 70cm digital TV
> transmitters working, so we will be trying it mobile shortly.

And maybe hutch the 23cms antenna up a few feet while no one is looking?.

Look forward to seeing it hopefully getting some extra use, all those improvements should help make it more accessible.
Fingers crost.
:
de G8VAT
:
Dah di dah..

GaryM1EGI
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Re: ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by GaryM1EGI » Mon May 08, 2017 9:25 pm

Hi Kay,

Sorry to hear about you not being well, given that situation I'm sure work will have been backing up.

I was planning on going portable this weekend again to test the DC block for my decent pre-amp, as it is one of those types which you can get inside to isolate the DC from the antenna side of things.
I may also test a couple more pre-amps I've made to compare results, as I need to change my current mast-head unit.
It wouldn't take much more effort for me to to take the solent and PA and see if I can access YT from there with my basic gear.

Unfortunately I couldn't see Graham's pictures this weekend, but he did manage to see mine!, so who knows, if we both can access YT when portable, problem sorted! along with activity on YT.
I was starting to think I would have to go portable on the Woodhead pass to work it.

On another note, I have just tried looking for VL and YT from home again this evening, both direct path and looking for a reflection... nothing seen!

I see the next event is the 10/11 of June which is the contest, the July event I shall be at the Microwave round table at Finningley.

I'll post here once I've been portable again.

73s Gary M1EGI

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G8NZR
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Re: ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by G8NZR » Tue May 09, 2017 8:32 am

Hi Gary & Graham

Thanks for the get well wishes - I'm much better than I was two weeks ago. Coughing so much I couldn't sleeep etc, so yes Gary, my work backed up a bit!! Lots of people seem to be suffering from the same.

The analogue input will be an interesting test. Graham (VAT) mentioned before that he thinks analogue has a sensitivity problem and this may be the case. With the new setup, I am happy it will be as sensitive as its going to be and should be a major improvement. YT hasn't been touched since before xmas, so the next visits will be the first in at least 5 months or so and seems to prove the repeater is working well up to present. Hopefully, everything should be installed in time for the contest weekend.

DC blocks - I remember in the early days looking for a fault on a receive pre-amp only to realise later that the dc was being shorted by the antenna. Its a problem easily forgotten about and then kick yourself when you realise what you've done!

Also this coming week, I hope to do some mobile tests with Graham (POK) via 70cm digital before the new box gets installed. Workshop tests indicate sensitivty should be better than 1uV at the antenna socket! I'm unsure if mobile digital works all that well - we'll see what results we get.

73 Kay

M0DTS
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Re: ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by M0DTS » Fri May 12, 2017 7:29 pm

All the coming upgrades sound great, looking forward to trying on 70cm.

I have a video of 2m mobile DATV on my youtube channel here, it's not that exciting but shows how it works..
https://youtu.be/PJrFCNG3A5Q

This was mostly line of sight from GB3KM, path was about 6km to 28km over 30min journey.
5W to 7/8 vertical on the van. 333Ks.
Reflections in built up areas are the problem, out it the open it works fairly well.

Rob

GaryM1EGI
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Re: ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by GaryM1EGI » Thu Jun 01, 2017 9:10 pm

Just thought I give a quick update on a couple of of recent outings from my portable site.

First of all, using the same location, antenna etc as the previous outing mentioned in the top post, I monitored both YT and VL via the streamer and tested access using my analogue TX with around 12 watts RF output...
VL was a P2 which I managed to peak to a P3, but unfortunately when I did the same tests with YT, I could open the repeater but that was about it.

My station could be vastly improved, but I feel it's best to have a good reference point which can only be done by keeping as much as possible the same for now.
With the same configuration I think Rob gave me a P3? or maybe P4? from his North Yorkshire site.

So at least once the upgrade has taken place I can head out again to check things, fingers crossed I will get in with a better picture.

On another note, I've recently build the version 2 mini tuner, but I seem to have some hardware issues!
This tuner should be more sensitive than my current unit as they have an LNA fitted to the front end.
All being well if I can remove the tuner, I can have a replacement which should hopefully work better...

Ideally I would like to try receive Rob on 70cms at the next outing, and also have a go via YT at working him, I may have to use an alternative site to have a better chance of getting into the repater.

73s Gary M1EGI

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G8NZR
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Location: Mirfield

Re: ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by G8NZR » Sat Jun 03, 2017 10:59 am

Hi Gary

Thanks for the update on YT performance. Hopefully the new rack should improve matters - if it doesn't, not sure where to go after that!

Anyhow, it's now June and we WILL be going to get things moving very shortly. Both me an Graham have either been unwell or had urgent work to complete hence the delays.

The analogue receiver seems to be not as sensitive as the digital receiver in latest testing, so the additional amp at the RF input may help quite a bit.

Just as a further analogue note, there has been an increase in the drone interference and I think there are now a few different ones around the area. Lets hope it doesn't spoil the use of YT once we get better gain :(

73s Kay

GaryM1EGI
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Re: ATV activity 7/5/17

Post by GaryM1EGI » Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:34 am

Hi,

Well as the weather is generally getting better and the days longer, it does allow more flights to take place... officially they should only be flown in daylight hours. Also when it's cold, it really does have an adverse effect on battery power, so flight time get reduced.
So all these things add up to more flights taking place.

I plan to try a new portable site tomorrow (11/6/17) so I will report back on if I can receive YT from there and how I manage to access it.

Another option, is to try log each event and try work out the flying location... If it's a regular Sunday event, for example, I'm happy to go portable and try access YT from their flight sites and see what happens?

73s Gary M1EGI

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