A windy walk and fun on 2m/70cm

Being a long weekend and an extended time off, it seemed right to head out and enjoy the good weather, albeit quiet windy ! After the excesses of Christmas and nice stroll along the coastline at Heingstbury Head would help me feel less guilty about everything I had eaten and drunk in the last few days..

Christmas Dinner and nice bottle of white wine.

Having packed my back-pack with the Kenwood TH-D7 and SSTV unit Sweety and headed off in the Mazda Bongo. It was quite busy when we arrived, but Sweety was quickly off his lead and enjoying a good run around ! The Wind was really strong but I got up the first hill and made a ‘test’ SSTV transmission back home, which worked really well !

Test 2M SSTV Transmission from HH
Isle of White (needles) across the

I didn’t use the replay test this time as I was keeping warm and making it across the hill. Once on the other side towards the Isle of White clearly in view I setup for another test transmission using the repeat function, I got a great picture back, but I think moving the radio caused a few a few interruptions, but no complaints !

interference from moving antenna

I settled down with a nice bottle of water whilst Sweety continued to enjoy running around and having a good sniff.

A nice rainbow and a sniff

I had a nice QSO via the IoW Ventnor repeater, GB3IW some 25 miles away with a good signal report and newly licenced M7 called David, who was enjoying Echolink and how he was getting on the air with a UV5R as well.

I really enjoyed the THD7 in being able to do both SSTV and a QSO, the walk was really invigorating as well !

Hoping I will do more /P and /M in the New Year, in the mean time I have a couple of projects around the QTH to finish off as well… 🙂


Alan / 2E0FWE

2M Packet fun !

Whilst enjoying QSOs on 2M and 80M of late, and enjoying some surprisingly good ‘lift’ on 2M which resulted in QSOs further a field. Still my interest returned to the use of AX25, aka Packet as the Kenwood TH-D7 has a built in TNC and capabilities as well as I have an interest to understand and investigate this more.

I started off by setting up Direwolf on Windows. I was quickly able to decode APRS packets from 144.800 – this made for interesting observation of the received information – there was quite a bit of packet data going on in the location and was even picking up data as far north as south Wales and the midlands.

I then went on to try out various visualisation software, starting with APRSISCE/32. Soon the screen started to fill with actual locations of APRS beacons and users, ranging from messaging to location tracking ! It was great to see so much info on 2M APRS.

Soon I was using the THD7 to send my own position data, and sure enough it appeared on APRS.FI website. At this point I knew next to little about APRS routeing and how messages are ‘repeated’ – before the Internet there were many ‘packet’ networks whereby you could jump between packet ‘nodes’ – this is more the ‘connected’ mode, rather than ‘unconnected’ modes where the likes of ‘beacon’ and ‘messaging’ are used tho.

After reading up a bit on WIDE-2,WIDE-1 I was able to get my messages rebroadcast by digipeaters in the location ! It was great seeing my messages rebroadcast and received and the station ID highlighted. I can see why Packet was important/useful before the internet.

With getting a grip with Direwolf on Windows and using clients to beacon and message my THD7, I wanted to do more ‘connected’ work. I was glad to see a AX25 packet station in Southampton of GB7SOU. At this point, I knew nothing on how to connect to a BBS with packet. In the ‘old days’ pre Internet, one would ‘dial in’ with a Modem with lightening speeds of 14K4 or even as fast as 56K ! Connect to a packet node was slightly more involved. I tuned my IC9700 and put the radio into FM-Data mode. I was able to hear the packets from the station and Direwolf was decoding them ! Huzzah packet contact.. but how do I connect – there is a huge amount of AX25 commands, and each BBS has its own set of commands. I edidn’tven know how to get messages out !

Sure enough several youtube videos later I was pulling messages via AX25 ! It was awesome ! I’ve not done BBS’s since about 1995 on an Amiga 1200 – it was great to use again and the BBS had loads of interesting informatin. I was quickly able to sort and filter the messages to make them readable.

WIth that I was thinking – well, I should have everything here to make my own packet-node ! So i set about setting up a raspberry Pi (4) and building a packet node. So far I have direworf working great and the PTT to UV-5R with Vox is doing the job ! Packet radio on a budget ! I’ve got to put up a better antenna, currently I’m using the Yagi and its very directional, so that will be swapped out for a Diamond X50. I will use my ‘starlink’ connection as the IP back end and look forward to running my own BBS ! albeit low power, it will be fun to try it out when going /M and yet another interesting part of the hobby on 2M comes alive !


Alan / 2E0FWE


Hi All !

Well having been busy on a variety of things, probably easier to do a mini-update !

VHF/UHF Operations

Having received the IC9700 have attached its own PC with dedicated software. Have upgraded the antenna to an Diamond X7000, early results are promising, G4PRS Net results following as of 6/12/21 on 145.450Mhz

G0JJI – 5/9 5/5
G1TEX 5/9
g1uvq 5/9 Trevor
2E0FWE —
2E0GPD 5/6 Clear Signal In
2E0EQD 5/9+20
2E0JPD 5/7 Very Clear; Wind affected antennas – Nothing Heard
G0ODP 5/9 5/7 paul (Corfe Mullen)
M0AXM/P 5/9 (Call sign hard to make out)
2E0DJW 5/9 (David)
G3MBM   5/9 (John Swanage)

Have been exploring APRS and Direwolf, mostly receiving and decoding packets into Pinpoint software. Interesting and learning more !

SSTV at the weekend on 144.450 so far no other callers, but have setup a return picture service which I used, this went really well with the new antenna and only using a Baofeng UV-5R. Am working on a better mobile solution to have /P operation on 2m/70cm.

Have picked up a beacon on 23cm which I think is the one in Mere, just great to pull something in. I wish the 9700 UK version also included the ATV section of the 23cm band as there is a nearby repeater.


Have setup the MFJ 993B to feed the antennas into the IC7300, allowing use of the end fed and 6BTV at a push of a button with the ATU taking care of the SWR. This had made operation on topband (160M) via the end fed possible. No telelophy contacts , but plenty of FT8 around Europe which I am happy with.

Making more Telephony contacts on 80m, enjoying lengthier QSOs, operators seem not to be in so much of a rush on 80m and have an actual conversation. During the day my friend and I have enjoyed listening to Hack Green SDR to some very amusing QSOs….

My Kiwi websdr is offline for the moment as I am relocating the antenna and feed wire, I’ve had no complaints.

Have my ovid booster jab coming up and am eager to get back to G4PRS club on Thursday nights…