November’s 630m Activity / CW Crossband Night!

Once again the 630m band will become a cacophony of CW and other sounds on Saturday night, November 12th! The actual motivation for the weekend event is a celebration of the November, 1906, Berlin Treaty ... making 500 kHz the International Distress Frequency for the next eighty years. It's also a great excuse for a lot of 630m diehards to get on the air and celebrate the band.

Three different groups will participate:

    U.S. Experimental Operators
    Canadian Amateurs
    Maritime Radio Historical Society

U.S. Part-5 Experimental Operators including WD2XSH stations and others will operate in the 472 – 479 kHz band. They will use CW transmissions for QSOs and beacons with special messages. There may also be some operation on 500 kHz itself.

Canadian Amateurs will be concentrating their efforts on providing two-way cross-band CW QSO's with other amateurs in the U.S.A. and Canada. They will be transmitting on specified frequencies (see below) and listening for replies to their 'CQ' on specified QSX frequencies within the 160, 80 and 40m CW bands.

The Maritime Radio Historical Society will activate its KSM/KPH transmitter at Bolinas, CA for a mini “Night of Nights” with special messages and bulletins.

Listeners are encouraged to send their reception reports to individual stations or via the LF/MF ON4KST chat page which should be very active during the event. Most experimental calls can be found via listings.

All amateurs are encouraged to participate in the cross-band activity by being able to listen on 630m but being able to answer on one of the specified HF bands.

So far this fall, propagation on the 630m band has been excellent and hopefully will continue well into November. Previous cross-band events have seen contacts made from coast-to-coast as well as west to Hawaii.

VE3OT QSL and coverage from previous crossband event

Confirmed Canadian stations include:

Station:  VA7MM (Mark) CN89 Coquitlam, B.C.
Time: 0400Z – 0800Z (Saturday night Nov 13 Z)
TX Frequency: 475.0 kHz
RX (QSX) Frequency: 1801 kHz / 3574 kHz / 7062 kHz

Station: VE7BDQ (John) CN89 Delta, B.C. November 2016
Time: 0300Z – 0700Z (Saturday night Nov 13 Z)
TX Frequency: 474.0 kHz
RX (QSX) Frequency: 3555 kHz

Station: VE7CNF (Toby) CN89 Burnaby, B.C.
Time: 0300Z – 0800Z (Saturday night Nov 13 Z)
TX Frequency: 476.5 kHz
RX (QSX) Frequency: 1836 kHz / 3558 kHz / 7031 kHz

Station: VE7SL (Steve) CN88 Mayne Island, B.C.
Time: 0200Z – 0700Z (Saturday night Nov 13 Z)
TX Frequency: 473.0 kHz
RX (QSX) Frequency: 3566 / 7066 kHz

Station: VE7CA (Markus) CN89 North Vancouver, B.C.
Time: 0200Z – 0700Z (Saturday night Nov 13 Z)
TX Frequency: 477.5.0 kHz
RX (QSX) Frequency: 1820 / 3550 / 7048 kHz

Station: VO1NA (Joe) GN37 Torbay, Newfoundland
Time: 2130Z – 0130Z (Saturday night Nov 12 Z – Sunday Nov 13 Z)
TX Frequency: 477.7 kHz
RX (QSX) Frequency: 3562 kHz

Station: VE3OT (Mitch) EN92 London, ON.
Time: 0000Z – 0400Z (Saturday night Nov 13 Z)
TX Frequency: 477.0 kHz
RX (QSX) Frequency: 3563 kHz / 7058 kHz

Several US Experimental stations also will be in operation throughout the band, in two-way QSO mode with each other, using CW or JT9. Some stations will also use WSPR and QRSS CW beacon modes.

The success of this event largely depends upon the participation of as many amateurs as possible.

Hopefully you will be able to participate in the two-way cross-band activity by being able to listen on 630m and then able to switch over to HF to transmit. This could involve the use of a separate receiver / transmitter or can often be easily implemented via your transceiver's 'A/B' switch.

No antenna for receiving on 630m? Don't let that stop you from taking part in the fun. Surprisingly good results can often be had by using a low band wire antenna such as a dipole or inverted-L for listening on 630m ... the antenna does not necessarily need to be resonant. In fact, often times, a non-resonant receiving antenna can provide a better overall S/N ratio than one which is resonant, as these often gather more noise along with signals.

You may want to experiment before hand by listening to many of the numerous U.S. experimental stations operating nightly, mostly in the WSPR mode, between 475.6 and 475.8kHz. Most operators provide a CW identifier following their WSPR transmission but a better way to decode these signals is by installing the latest WSPR software, WSJT-X (freeware), at K1JT's website here. The software works extremely well and is easy to install and get working. If you set the software to 'upload spots', you can share your nightly catches with dozens of other listeners throughout the continent on the WSPRnet website.

courtesy: KB5NJD's 630m Daily Blog
I'll be sending out a few more reminders as the 630m activity night gets closer but please mark your calendars and make a date to participate, by either sending in your 'heard' reports or by getting on-the-air and working some of the Canadian cross-banders.

If you have further questions, please contact myself or John Langridge, KB5NJD / WG2XIQ.
Steve McDonald, VE7SL, is a regular contributor to and writes from British Columbia, Canada. Contact him at [email protected].

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