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Friday, January 15, 2010

VK6ADF: Echolink, WSPR, 6 Meter Yagi

From London I used to talk to Phil, VK6ADF, on Echolink. We have a lot of interests in common. This may be due to the fact that we were both born in the International Geophysical Year. Phil is now reading "SolderSmoke -- The Book," so we will probably discover other areas in which we have crossed paths. This week, I decided to get back onto Echolink, and in my first session I was looking for OM Phil. He wasn't on, but, IN A VERY MYSTERIOUS TWIST, that morning he sent me an e-mail. Spooky, eh? Anyway, yesterday we got on Echolink and covered our usual wide-range of tech topics. Phil alerted me to a web site called Real Flight that provides an on-line simulator for Radio Controlled airplane pilots. Obviously Billy and I could use some time in the simulator!
Phil is also into WSPR and as we spoke I fired up my 20 mW DSB WSPR rig. I was immediately heard by an Irish station, and Phil almost instantly saw the report on the WSPR database. I noticed that the EI station was reporting that I was on 40 meters, when in fact I was rock-bound on 30. Again, as Phil and I talked, I went to the WSPR chat section and asked about the freq discrepancy. Another VK6 (a friend of Phil's!) answered my question (a simple set-up problem). Small world.
Phil and I have similar curmudgeon-like thoughts on Surface Mount Soldering, and he seemed sympathetic when I said that I think I am more of a "Hardware Defined Radio" guy. Again, this may be an IGY thing. Oh yea, almost forgot: We're not crazy about LINUX either. We are only a few short steps away from the "SPARK FOREVER" mentality and full-fledged Luddite status.
One interest that Phil and I DO NOT share is Six Meters. Phil is now addicted to the Magic Band (which I still consider to be a white noise generator). Check out his video on his six meter yagi.

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