If you’re a VHF/UHF enthusiast, you’ll know what I mean when I say that there are CQs you make, which you don’t expect to be answered.
And so it was last night, around 2030 local time as I was driving back from the gym to home. I knew that 50MHz had been lively earlier on the evening as I heard a CT station on FM as I drove up from the station. As I drove out of the gym, I could hear a local QSO (local to Italy, that is, with no callsigns) fading up and down on 50.500.
I wondered if the band was still open – so as I drove out along the main road, I tried a CQ call on 51.510 – completely expecting silence to be the only reply. But there was a signal – which completely caught me by surprise with its’ strength – but I didn’t have the volume set right. I thought it was a local and asked for a repeat. It was EA2DVT!
Although Alejandro was obviously having some problems copying me, we were able to have a nice QSO as I drove home. A real surprise and pleasure!
The FT8900 seems to have a bit of an intermittent fault though. A few times recently, I have had reports of interference on the audio. Baz, G8DOR thought it was something to do with the PA. The issue seems to be temperature related and only seems to happen for a short time. The suggestion seems to be that there might be a dry joint somewhere in the PA. It will be interesting to see if it occurs on both sides of the radio (the FT8900 having two distinct radios in it) – at the moment, I’ve been using the right hand side. I’ll switch it over to the left and see if that changes things.