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DU1GM's Ham Shack - George Szymanski


DU1GM
George Szymanski
Advanced Class
DU1GM Ham Since 1973
Philippines

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Information

Other Callsigns
GM4COK
DU1/GM4COK
GM4COK/MM
VP9/GM4COK
DU1KIR

My Ham Radio Interests
6m DX
EME
20m JT65a

Equipment
IC756PRO3
IC756PRO
IC706MK2G
FT8800R
FT90
FT736M
FT817
Elecraft K2 (x2)
TR-1300
T81A
IC-T22

Other Interests
I am the webmaster for PARA and PARL as well as some personal websites.

Mayet and I have now moved in to our new QTH in Sariaya although the house is far from finished. More updates as things take shape, meanwhile check out my web page www.du1gm.dxhams.net/sariaya.htm for pictures of the new place.

Clubs
Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB)
Philippine Amateur Radio Association, Inc. (PARA)
Philippine Amateur Radio League, Inc. (PARL)

DU1GM is Connected to the following - 9/6/2012 6:39:51 AM

DV3SE / KG4CWF DU1KJA
DU1GM's Blog Post - 9/6/2012 6:39:51 AM

WARC Bands

I haven't done very much on the WARC bands, 10, 18 & 24MHz so I decided to make an antenna. A trapped dipole seemed the answer but the coax traps I made, although resonating properly, didn't seem to work very well. I then decided to make a fan type dipole with all three bands connected in parallel and spaced apart about 6 inches or so. After many ups and downs, lowering and raising the antenna and pruning, I now have a very serviceable antenna. I worked a lot of stations on 24MHz and recently 18MHz has been hot. I'm filling up my logbook very rapidly.

I took down the antenna recently to measure the final lengths etc and I wrote it up for my web site.
You can read it at www.du1gm.dxhams.net/WARC.htm

73 and see you on the bands!
George, DU1GM
Comment from W6QT 10/3/2012 12:25:09 AM
Right. 24 & 18 have been hot. Looking forward to seeing how this was made. It will be nice I'm sure.

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DU1GM Uploaded a Picture - 6/11/2011 12:34:54 PM


Antenna Patch Panel
Antenna Patch Panel

DU1GM's Blog Post - 6/11/2011 11:42:30 AM

8 element 6m Yagi

I'm currently in the process of building an 8 element Yagi for 50MHz, based on the G0KSC design. My main problem is finding suitable materials which is always a problem in this country. As usual one has to make compromises and do the best one can.
The 8 element will replace the 5 element F9FT yagi I am using at the moment. That antenna is a bit old and is less than optimum although I have modified the feed to give a few more dB gain.
At this time I have completed the two sections of the boom, added the element holders and I am in the process of making boom joint brackets as well as boom strenghtening support brackets.
As usual I am writing a short article for the PARA web site to try and encourage others to have a go at making antennas with the materials available in this country. When complete I will add the url here so watch this space.

While I am in the antenna making mind set I'm also thinking of building a log periodic for 40-80MHz or so mainly for use in tv DXing on Channel R1 but also for listening to 70MHz. We don't have that band available in DU land but I'm interested to see if I can hear anyone from Europe in the coming year if 6m band conditions improve sufficiently, and there may be a possibility of working cross band.
I may also build a new 2m band Yagi to replace the Cushcraft 10 element yagis I have at the moment as I dont think those are particularly optimized.
As with the long 6m Yagi I would also like to try and hear some EME signals on 2m.
73
George, DU1GM
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DU1GM's Blog Post - 6/11/2011 11:32:18 AM

Antenna Patch Panel

It seems like ages since I added any info to this page!

I recently built an antenna patch panel to make life easier for myself. It's a real hassle disconnecting the antennas from each rig when there is an electrical storm about so I thought I would make things easier by having all the antennas coming into a panel on the wall. All the coax cables come in through the wall at that point anyway and they were a real mess of different lengths just piled up on the floor before going to the rigs.
I had an old PK232 box which looked to be ideal to make up a patch panel and I was able to put 9 connectors on each side, 6 PL types and 3 N types.
The main shack ground cable also comes into the room at that point and it's connected to the antenna panel as well. I added bleed resistors to the antenna side of each connector as well as spark gaps, although I'm not sure how effective those would be anyway. In any case the main reason for the panel is to be able to unplug the rigs from the antenna as quickly as possible when required and that objective has been met. I wrote a little article about the construction and I will post the url when I have tidied it up and posted it on my website.

73
George, DU1GM
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DU1GM is Connected to the following - 6/11/2011 12:44:50 AM

W6QT
DU1GM Updated Profile - 6/11/2011 12:44:50 AM


DU1GM is Connected to the following - 5/22/2010 5:02:17 PM

WB4IUY DV1SGF ZL1DOM DY1TPS DV1VHY
DU1GM's Blog Post - 5/22/2010 5:02:17 PM

FT90

Another PARA auction and another "new" rig in the shack! This time it was an FT90 vhf/uhf mobile transceiver. It's very small but still packs a 50W punch on 2m and 35W on 70cm. The mic cord was falling to pieces, as if the plastic was rotting, so I replaced that and it looks like new.
I also got a Daiwa manual HF antenna tuner, CNW418, in the same auction. Apart from a unsoldered wire on the tuning coil it was in good condition.

73
George
DU1GM
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DU1GM's Blog Post - 5/5/2010 6:15:45 PM

IC-T22

Our National Organization, PARA, has been holding online auctions for its members and I managed to win an IC-T22 hand held 2m FM transceiver. It works well and is worth the bid I put in for it. The auctions are fun and there have been some nice items donated by JA1BLC and DX1J. We are now running another auction which will end on 13th May.

73
George, DU1GM
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DU1GM's Blog Post - 4/2/2010 6:58:58 PM

Trio TR-1300

I bought a TR-1300 in an auction after one of our local meetings and I paid very little for it. The auction was of dud equipment but much of it actually worked including my TR-1300!

All it needed was a few xtals tweaking to get the frequency spot on (it's a vxo controlled rig).
I also made a rechargeable battery pack out of four used laptop cells and it works a treat. If anyone out there has a manual for this rig I would appreciate a scanned copy.

The TR-1300 is a 6m only SSB rig and has fairly limited frequency coverage. It will do as a nice little monitoring rig for 50.110MHz.

73
George
DU1GM
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DU1GM is Connected to the following - 3/4/2010 9:05:13 AM

W6SEL DU1EE W8EEO
DU1GM Uploaded a Picture - 3/4/2010 9:05:13 AM


Bahay Kubo
Bahay Kubo

DU1GM is Connected to the following - 1/10/2010 7:37:22 PM

N1TKO
DU1GM's Blog Post - 1/10/2010 7:37:22 PM

New QTH

We found a nice lot a few weeks ago so we bought it.
The lot is 2,500sqm or just under 27,000 sq ft. The area is quite flat apart from to the north where Mount Banahaw sits in splendor about 14km away!

You can get more info on my web page...
www.du1gm.dxhams.net/sariaya.htm
73

George
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DU1GM is Connected to the following - 11/22/2009 8:55:21 AM

DW1FOD
DU1GM's Blog Post - 11/22/2009 8:55:21 AM

Timewave ANC-4 Noise Cancelling Unit

I had my eye on this unit last year at our PARA Anniversary. Unfortunately I couldn't afford it then and I wondered if it would turn up at the bring and buy stall this year. Well it did so I grabbed it and took it home!
I have bad interference from my computer psu and it is worst on 40m. It sounds like power line interference and comes from the generic power supply unit which has no filtering components inside. I did check by switching off the computer and the noise disappeared. I also tried adding a mains filter to the 220VAC input and it made about 10dB difference but I should really change out the power supply for a branded version for a proper cure.
Anyway, when I fitted the ANC-4 inline with my HF rig and adjusted the controls I was amazed to find it completely nulled out the noise and signals I couldn't hear before became Q5! I tried 80m also but I wasn't as successful. I will experiment with different noise pickup antennas but the little telescopic one on the unit works very well at least on 40m.
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DU1GM's Blog Post - 10/13/2009 9:36:47 PM

dxhams.net

I have tried many "free" web hosting sites including qsl.net and have always been frustrated by them either closing down suddenly, as in the case of qsl.nu, or having limitations on scripts etc.

I decided to buy my own domain, dxhams.net, and pay for hosting. The cost was quite low which surprised me, it's around $50 a year and gives 100GB monthly bandwidth and 10GB storage space. It also allows 500 email addresses and 10 sub domains.

I have uploaded my own website, www.du1gm.dxhams.net, as well as a couple of others including our local club web site
www.dx1l.dxhams.net

One of these days I will get to grips with SQL databases etc!

73
George
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DU1GM's Blog Post - 10/13/2009 9:31:17 PM

IC756PRO3

The latest addition to the station is an IC756PRO3. It came with an FT736 as part of the package and I am quite pleased with both radios. The PRO3 has much the same performance as the PRO I already have, but it has a few more bells and whistles. The PRO3 will be my main station radio and will most likely spend most of its time on 6m!
I have yet to try the FT736 on 6m; it came with three modules, 6m, 2m and 70cm. It is an old rig but from what I read on the net it had good performance compared to most other radios available at that time. If anyone has any comments on the 736 I would be glad to hear them.

73

George
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DU1GM is Connected to the following - 8/16/2009 5:57:05 PM

DU1JQ DV1GIZ
DU1GM's Blog Post - 8/16/2009 5:57:05 PM

IC706MK2G

I got a used 706MK2G a couple of days ago and it works beautifully. Actually I had one some years ago and sold it so I'm fairly used to using one. Even so I had to refer to the manual a few times!

Hopefully I can get it installed in the car and operate while we are house hunting!

73
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DU1GM is Connected to the following - 8/7/2009 5:30:02 AM

DW1VNF DV1KD DV1EE DV3AK
DU1GM's Blog Post - 8/7/2009 5:30:02 AM

Perseid Meteors

August 12th is the date of the peak of the Perseid meteor shower. As I write this I can hear, courtesy of an audio stream in the USA at
http://wowzaweb.streamguys.com/~spaceweather/
many pings from incoming Perseid meteors. Some of them are very swift indeed and they have been clocked at 130,000mph using visual tracking by several cameras! What you can hear on the audio stream are reflections of vhf signals.
Many years ago when I was in Edinburgh UK I was very active using meteor scatter on the 2m band. Nowadays I can just listen to the meteors via the internet but they are fascinating and sometimes sound really spooky! I can thoroughly recommend going to that url especially nearer the 12th when there will be many reflections per minute. The forecast for this years shower is very good and if the skies are clear in the early morning you should also be able to see many meteors per minute.
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DU1GM's Blog Post - 8/2/2009 5:52:35 AM

AT-130

I found my old AT-130 today at the old QTH and brought it back here for testing. It was a bit grimy from having been in the open air (polluted) so I thought that was a good sign that I had taken it out of service while it was still working! The coax and control cables had been cut off to save time.
I connected up some cable to the +12V, GND and start connections, fired some RF in from the 756PRO and momentarily keyed the start line to GND.
I was surprised when it rattled through the relays and tuned up the antenna in a few seconds! I checked all the bands from 160m through to 10m and all was fine!
All it needs now is a good cleaning and it's ready for service once more.
I really thought that both the AH-4 and the AT-130 had been damaged by static. I had sent both back to the supplier in Singapore and the note I got back from them was that the AH-4 was beyond repair (!) and the AT-130 was refurbished, so I guess at least the 130 was damaged. Goodness knows what tests they did to the AH-4.
End of that story with a happy ending! The next account will be of how I got the AH-4 working in the car. I hope that has a happy ending too, I still have to get a hold of a good sturdy whip antenna similar to an ICOM AH-2B.
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DU1GM's Blog Post - 7/30/2009 10:30:44 AM

ICOM AH-4 Auto Tuner

I have an old AH-4 Auto tuner which I used to use fitted at the base of a 21ft vertical wire. It worked ok until one day there was a close lightning strike within about 500m. After that it didn't work at all! I thought it was scrap but kept it for the past 7 or 8 years in case the parts or at least the waterproof case might come in handy. There was no sign internally that anything was wrong, but with the small chips in there, who knows...

Just out of idle curiosity, I tried it out this evening with my 756PRO and a few bits of wire to apply power and start tuning, . Well, the darn thing worked just fine!
Now I just need to test it properly with the unit connected to the 756PRO via the correct control cable. This I will do tomorrow...

Testing with the correct control cable plugged in to the 756PRO was a success. I will now most likely use the tuner mobile with a 706MK2G.

After the weekend I will do similar tests with an old AT-130 I have at my other QTH. I suspect that one really is dead but we shall see....
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DU1GM's Blog Post - 7/21/2009 8:40:51 PM

New QTH

Next week will see the sale of my UK house complete and we will start to seek out a new QTH here in DU. At the moment Mayet (DV1JAZ) and I live in a small rented apartment which is almost totally unsuitable for ham radio. We will move out of the terribly polluted and crowded Metropolis of Manila to a place south of here called Lucena City. To give some perspective, Metro Manila has a population of about 20 million people! Lucena on the other hand has a population of about 250,000.

11 Dec 2009
We had a run down to Lucena yesterday and saw one lot of about 5,500 sqm at a reasonable price. The land was quite flat and surrounded by rice fields and not much else. We will keep that one in mind as we continue our search.
We had a look the previous week but the places we were shown were not really suitable. The last one we saw was an overgrown shambles of about 1500sqm. We had to hack our way through heavy undergrowth to reach the back of the property. Those people really have no idea how to sell a property!
Ah well, another run down to Lucena to see some more properties next weekend...

More as the search continues....
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DU1GM is Connected to the following - 7/17/2009 6:39:56 PM

KW4VL
DU1GM Uploaded a Picture - 7/17/2009 6:39:56 PM


mugshot
mugshot

DU1GM's Blog Post - 7/17/2009 6:15:05 AM

First Blog!

I was told about this site by a friend of mine so I decided to register and start blogging etc!
At the moment I am in a temporary qth so activities are limited. In the first quarter of next year we plan to move out of Manila and hopefully I can become more active in ham radio.

Watch this space, as they say!
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DU1GM Joined My Ham Shack - 7/17/2009 6:03:34 AM


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