WSPR Success!!

This afternoon I finally had a chance during a break in the rain to try WSPR! It went well, however remember I have to setup my rig etc outside in the open; and unfortunately not long after getting set it up started to drizzle again! As a result, for most of the hour or so I was sitting under an umbrella – a curious sight.

But weather aside I had a great time seeing everything work and ended up receiving stations on both 40m (only VK1) and also 30m (all the way over on the east coast of the US!). However my dipole in theory is only for 40m and 15m (it's trapped for such) so I wasn't sure what my success would be on 30m, but the WSPRnet site seemed to be saying prorogation conditions were good. So, I gave it a bash and was surprised with the results.

Anyway, 40m was my first band (as it seems to work reasonable here normally and has the most traffic on WSPR) and after setting everything up I was happy to see a familiar call sign – VK1OD. I was consistently receiving him and could gradually see the quality signal decrease as 40m propagation fell off. Most likely my link to him was purely skywave due to the range and that my dipole is setup in an NVIS configuration for 40m – being 7m or less from the ground (at it's highest point). But as a result, it was great to see a numerical representation of the ionosphere changing. But in the end I can say my first received WSPR station was VK1OD at ~198km.

After playing with 40m though I jumped over to 30m and within moments had already received WA2YUN @ RK39 which was great to see – as many other VK stations were reporting that. But then after hanging around for a bit longer it was great to see the next contact K1HTV which was at a whopping 15,871kms!! I was truly surprised at that, especially seeing my 30m dipole was not optimised for that band.

All up I played around for a bit over an hour (and was about to try some other digital HF modes) but then my battery level got too low so had to end it there. But more playing will occur in the not too distant future (maybe tomorrow on 2m), but I think I'll wait for better weather and take an extension cable with me.

I look forward to the future after I upgrade my license when I can also transmit. It did however take me a good 45minutes until I figured out how to change WSPR to receive only mode. Until then I had to mute my system or endure the annoying sound out of the speakers – seeing obviously that is not currently wired back into the the radio (seeing I'm not allowed to transmit digital). But even in rx only mode, I find WSPR is great fun and that may also be because it still involves being able to upload your results to WSPRnet. It was also good to see other VK F calls actively listening too (VK2FLAW for example).

Well, I've attached a few screen captures and also some photos of the setup – you can see how unsuitable it is for wet weather (and also the umbrella). 🙂

1 – My very first WSPR reception
2 – The end result of my activity on 40m before swapping to 30m
3 – The results at the end of my 30m session
4 – The WSPRnet log showing my reception of K1HTV
5 – The WSPRnet log showing on of my receptions of VK1OD
6 – The WSPRnet map showing my reception of WA2YUN
7 and 8 – Photos of my setup



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