Tuesday, April 21, 2020

More 40 MHz & 60 MHz news from the IRTS

The Irish Radio Transmitters Society (IRTS) had some news updates (19th April 2020) about the new 40 MHz and 60 MHz bands recently.

EI1KNH is QRV on 60.013 running CW/PI4 for it's first e-season, which might be a good indicator that 4m is opening if anyone spots it ex-EI, and if any EIs spot it, it's a clear sign 4m and maybe 2m are available. It's located at the same site as EI4RF and EI0SIX, running 35w to a folded dipole at 1000ft ASL.

Meanwhile on 8m, the proposed EI1KNH beacon on 40.013 is on hold thanks to the lockdown, but will be deployed rapidly when the movement ban is Lifted. It will run CW/PI4 with 40w to a vertical monopole.

EI0SIX, which is /qrp at the moment, pending a PA and antenna upgrade - also ready to deploy as soon as the lockdown lifts. For anyone that has a MARS-Modded (non-SDR based) radio with 6m, they should be able to run on 40 MHz/8m, in RX mode at least, and the frequency to watch is 40.220 - this is the spot frequency LY2YR (Gintas) is allowed run on this season. He has a MARS modded FT2000 & a hexbeam ready to go.

At EI4GNB a MARS modded FT857d and a 2 element Quad are setup. Last year Gintas worked EI4GNB on 5m for a first, and what may be a 5m distance record, this year it's about 8m, which should be easy enough. Any EIs looking for a new band, or to set a distance record might want to get set for this. One word of caution, especially with 5m (60 MHz) - just because Your radio can be tricked into TX out of band does not follow that it will be clean or any use, this is especially true of the current crop of hybrid & SDR-cored radios.

Comparing an Icom IC7100 and an Icom 7300 for OOB use is night & day - the 7100 has acceptable emissions on 5m and 8m, but the 7300 has been found to be strongly not suitable. A general rule of thumb is, if it's in warranty, or just out of warranty, don't try to use it, get a transverter instead.

A beacon on 40.675 MHz is being run in grid KG46rc. The beacon uses an Icom Ic706 radio, 30 watts to a 5 element YU7EF Yagi on EU. So, with some luck, EI,

ZS [South Africa] and LY [Lithuania] can be worked on 8m this year.

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