AM Rally This Weekend

Discussion in 'Chat' started by WQ5Q, Apr 1, 2017.

  1. WQ5Q

    WQ5Q Member

    Wondering if anyone else on this forum has worked or plans to work the "AM Rally" this weekend. Steve, WA1QIX is one of the organizers. There's a web site (google "AM Rally") and newcomers to the mode are encouraged to participate.

    I had to borrow a working transmitter (Flex 3000) from a friend since all of mine are in various stages of "restoration." I used it with my Collins 30L-1 amplifier and I installed a homebrew sampler (K1JJ) to feed a Tek 465 scope to monitor my modulation. I did a lot of tweaking to get the Flex's audio tweaked with some help from a WA1AEX article on the Flex website. This all enabled me to work AM tonight FOR THE FIRST TIME!

    With 150w carrier, I was able to work 5 states and 10 stations on 7292 with excellent audio and signal reports. It was a lot of fun. There was a lot of activity still going on when I signed to go get dinner.

    I wanted to also say thanks to Brian and the people on this forum. I've learned a lot from all of you and it was fun to finally get on the air.
  2. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    I used to put a notification that would scroll across the top of the board when it was going on each year, but that rally is based on the east coast so I stopped doing it. Those guys do their own thing. Even if I had all of my big stuff back on the air I wouldn't even be interested.

    You might hear a few guys out west here that attempt to get in, but there are not very many if any at all. We probably should eventually start our own rally for the western and Midwestern regions on down the road.
  3. WQ5Q

    WQ5Q Member

    I put a couple more in the log today on 7293. I've only worked western states so far. Last night I heard Timtron on 3885 really late at night here in AZ. I didn't try to work him due to heavy static crashes. What's been fun is seeing the variety of stuff people are using for AM. One of the most interesting at least to me was WB6YEC in San Diego using a DX20 with a homebrew modulator driving an SB220. He sounded fantastic.
  4. WQ5Q

    WQ5Q Member

    I just worked my farthest AM contact so far N2BE in New Jersey on 7275. About 2300 miles. He was using one of the Globe Champions.
  5. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    Yeah, that's a little easier on 40-meters when the band goes long, but try it on 75, much harder. 40-meters did go long yesterday. I know because whenever I cant hear myself on the one web SDR receiver just down in Half Moon Bay it's long and yesterday I couldn't.
  6. WD5JKO

    WD5JKO Member

    Last night I heard that guy running the Globe Champion. I was using my Flex 5000a. Friday night I heard both WA1QIX and WA1HLR on 75m (3885). It was around 11 pm central and both were 30/9 and full quieting.

    For those Legacy Flex users, the PowerSDR software has been upgraded in leaps and bounds by Darrin, KE9NS. Flex stopped updating back in 2013, but Darrin has been on a tear. Several things added for AM: The audio monitor is added (no latency), the Flex 1500 & 3000 can now transmit audio up to 10 Khz (same as the 5K), and audio recordings can now be made in MP3 format. Many neat things added along with adding the SWL band buttons, adding the SWL list from 30Khz to 30Mhz (updated about once a month), and DX Spotter. It is neat to watch the panadapter with the world map in the background, displaying the actual grayline (based upon operators latitude & longitude), and position of the sun. Next to Sun is the SFI number.

    go to

  7. WQ5Q

    WQ5Q Member

    Thanks Jim...I did not know about all of those neat features you mentioned but I knew about KE9NS and tried to download the software before the Rally. I kept getting errors (I'm using an iMac with Bootcamp for W7) so I fell back to the last Flex version 2.7.2. I'm going to keep trying because I really want to use his software.

    I did hear WA1QIX on 75m on Saturday night but couldn't make out anyone else. There was a lot of QRN here. It was amazing how strong Steve was...a high dipole and lots of clean power certainly helps.
    Great idea! It never occurred to me to use a web radio during the entire weekend. That would have been helpful especially when I was adjusting things or just to see what was going on in other parts of the country. Although, I'm not so comfortable using one for contacts...kind of feels like cheating you know.
  8. N1BUS

    N1BUS Member

    I didnt get a chance to get on the air for the AM rally due to not having a good antenna. I have a 60 foot wire running up a tree but it doesn't load on 80 meters. When the snow finnaly clears i will run radials. I was able to listen to some qso's however on a home made regenerative receiver. It's based on the Charles Kitchin design with 3 fets. I had to make some modifications. The audio output was low so i came off the source instead of the drain and got about twice as much audio. I made a 3 stage audio preamp to feed an lm386. I used a fixed coil instead of plug ins so it covers from 6.9 to 8 mhz. I will try to upload the diagram and a photo.

    40mtrregenfront.JPG Kitchin 3 fet as built.png
  9. WQ5Q

    WQ5Q Member your transmitter homemade too?
  10. Radio-Tuber

    Radio-Tuber Member

    A West Coast AM Rally would be nice for once. I like AM, just wish there were more kindred spirits here in NorCal.
    There's a Military AM group that gets on the air Saturdays 1900 local on 3985 (they change the time an hour at a time, following the sunset).
    I run a BC-375-E at 55W with a stock T-17 mike in that net. From My Eureka QTH, I can hit the Bay Area and Fresno w/good condx, sometimes make it all the way to San Bernardino when the band is quiet and intermediate bounces occur.
    I also run a Globe Scout 680-A at ~40W w/a D-104 Barefoot. I use a TCS-8 RX/TX combo at ~25W for occasional local QSO's.

    Jim K6FWT
  11. WQ5Q

    WQ5Q Member

    Not a bad idea Jim, although the AM Rally we just had was pretty good and it was the ideal time for all the West Coast AM stations to get on the air and work each other. You have a nice set up there in Eureka. Hope to work you on AM sometime.
  12. Radio-Tuber

    Radio-Tuber Member

    That must have been fun! I just recently repaired my main email and heard of this too late. Is this a yearly/quarterly thing?
  13. WQ5Q

    WQ5Q Member

    This year was the first ever....there are some other AM events during the year usually in the winter...the "Classic Exchange" is one of them and I think is more oriented toward vintage and Broadcast gear. The AM Rally is designed to encourage anyone with a license to operate anything to get on AM...especially newcomers, of which I was one.
  14. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    Kelly, the rally is long over, but I wanted to post the link below here. You are coming in pretty good here today in San Jose, CA. Just listen to the attached mp3 file.

    40-Meter AM is Rocking Today
  15. W6MQI

    W6MQI Member

    My station won't be back on the air for probably two months or more until the the new wireless room is built. I'm really looking forward to having a new operating position that I can finally enjoy all my radios at one time.

    Kelly I was checking into the Sunday morning Military net net at 0730 hrs, and every once in awhile a nice sounding BC375 would check in. I like the looks of the BC 375 maybe someday I'll see one that has my name on it . In the meantime hands are full with the ART-13/BC348P combo hope to hear hear you on AM someday.

    Are you going to the MRCG rally in May this year?

  16. WQ5Q

    WQ5Q Member

    Hey thanks I was really strong up your way....that was a Flex 3000 driving a Collins 30L-1 to 150 watts was fun to hear what I sound like on the that's a lot of "Aaahhhh's " :biggrin:

    Here's my garage hamshack showing the 30L-1 and Millen tuner. This was my setup for the AM Rally.

    Kelly WQ5Q.jpg

    Sorry Dave....I have no idea what the MRCG is??? Please enlighten me.