2m ground gain
Low band HF frontend
27 years of VHF-ing at ON7EH
On this page, you'll find what has been achieved from the parental and
actual QTH, both located in CK03f or JO20FV, after 27 years of square hunting on
The QTH lies 8km NE of Brussels, capital from Belgium.
This long period was interrupted by:
*10 non-activity years, which were used to retain the self-supporting
tower at my parents home (building permit) and to settle our family in an
appartment and finally in this new home.
*occasional periods of several months required for antenna maintenance. (nice
weather is as rare now as it was then, here in Belgium...)
It is never a pleasure to work at tower heights of 18 and 24m above ground.
A big word of thanks for the volunteers ON5SP+, ON6BG, ON5UM, ON5NI+,
ON4QM, etc. for this!
|The map, hereabove, contains the more than 500 worked WW-locators during this period
till september 2006.
||The above map, is the
actualized situation nearly one year later. (August 2007, after the Perseids
Note: the map was composed with GCMWIN23 by Roger Hedin and filled up with
Windows Paint. (thanks to OK1TEH for the idea)
Some necessary comments to the
propagation modes used:
Many locators from EME initials were
deliberately ommitted from this survey.
The furthest contact spans to UR2 (now ES) Estonia, followed by
several contacts into OH1.
*FAI (field aligned irregularities):
Three contacts were made in 1992 (2 German sations and one OK2) The
scatter point was lying over the North Sea. Signal strengths were low but did
not require other filters than the human ear...
*Es (sporadic E):
The longest 2m contact ever made from Machelen was a SSB contact
with EA8BEX back in 1986, at a distance of 3048km.
This contact was made with 2 Tonna's at 24m (one with
17elements, the other with several broken elements) on top of a bent stainless
steel top tube, inside a broken Ham IV rotor. (picture to be added)
In fact, the beam heading was fixed to EA5 (Javea, province of Allicante)
to allow the weekly hf sked on the 20 meter band with my grandfather, EA5ASN.
This represents about 30° offest from true bearing to EA8 with an antenna with
15° side polarisation!!
*MS (meteor scatter):
At first, with HSCW (high speed CW) with a rescued Philips recorder and the
LA8AK+ up-converter as keyer a RAM-based one (thanks Bob, ON5QW) and
later CMOS IC's of different (always) homebrew vintage.
From 2003 onwards and exclusively from this QTH , with the PC and the FSK441
program. (with a 12el yagi at 9m above ground level or 33m above sea level)
The longest distance was with a UB5 station at 2237km and this with HSCW.
Although, WSJT's FSK441 allows better decoding at lower signal levels, this
distance will not be bettered from this QTH, given actual antenna height and
shorter radio horizon.
The best ever aurora QSO (in raspy CW, of course) was made with a UA3 at
I remember this aurora opening very well since it happened during an EME
weekend with low path loss...
In order to start up serious 2m operations, I always had to climb (!!) the
self-supporting 18m tower to connect the antenna array to the main feeder (to
have the lowest antenna line losses).
This also happened that day but when switching on the Rx, I heard several long
distance stations with auroral tone and good signal strength.
I did not work EME that day...!
A word of recognition
goes to all those hams that went on remote locations spending time and money
to make all this possible!
In a sense, I also contributed to expeditions...
First, a 2m HSCW expedition to JO10SS, which was considered as rare at that
time.(thanks to Luc, ON4ASL)
Later and still in the early 80's, the first ever 10GHz narrowband activity (/M)
from the same square with a +10dBm DC0DA-transverter, driven by a FT290R1and a
Procom 40cm dish. (thanks to Bert, ON6OO)
The biggest expedition, however,
1992, with ON1BCB and ON5FF to Africa's C5-The Gambia.
A first ever 2m EME
and satellite operation from this rare West-african country.
On 144MHz EME, we were active as C53GS (the callsign was courtesy of the
guesthouse owner, Ernie Sumption) with 8 x 12el homebrew yagies,
elevated by a
reinforced KR500, counterweighted with a red bucket filled with native stones.
In total, 120 different CW EME
stations were worked from which 70 stations on random, including one single yagi station!
The C53GS EME QSL-card front side:
The gentle boy on the picture is Ricky, the son of the Bunkoyo-guesthouse's
He's manipulating the bencher paddle with the tiny CMOS keyer II.
The shoebox 3CX800 amplifiers on the left pile. (one for 2m, the other for
The middle pile consisting of a multimode 70cm transceiver and the driving
The right pile consists of the elevation and azimuth control together with Yaesu
PSU acting as stand...
The picture was taken in Anna's (Ernie's wife) beautiful flower garden.
On the right hand side, one can see the
8x 12el K1FO array fed by a massive 8x1 splitter and phased by pre-cut Aircom+
The antenna array was mounted on C53GS's Versatower. (also visible the necessary
On the back side of the QSL-card, one can find, besides the QSO
information, the following text :
The QTH: Kololi, 19km SSW of Banjul in grid IK13SH, The Gambia, West-Africa
The first-ever VHF-dx activity in this mega-warm and lovely black country was
only possible through the hospitality and help of Mr and Mrs Sumption from the
Bunkoyo hotel and the know-how of the SABENA airline people. Thank you.
The operators: ON1BCB, Marc ON5FF, Marc ON7EH, Michel (also QSL-manager)
The stations worked on 2m EME can be found, here.
The trip report is now available,
A personal view of club-member Patrick (Patje) of an african EME-expedition is
summarized in this artwork picture...here
The following is a brief overview of the C53GS -Oscar 13 satellite, mode J operation. (2m uplink and
Tx: IC275H, Tx ant: 8x12el
Rx: TR851, Rx ant: 17el Tonna
For the first-ever satellite operation from The Gambia, WestAfrica, we operated through 2
15-04-1992: 22.52Z to 16-04-1992: 00.26Z
This corresponds to about 34 minutes of activity with 50 stations worked.
17-04-1992: 20.41Z to 22.39Z
This corresponds to 118 minutes of activity with 150 stations in the log.
First ever station worked in on this satellite mode from C5: KL7GRF/6. Last station worked: