Installing JT65

Running JT requires three packages:   WSJT-X, Timing, and JT-Alert.

1.  JT.   Although there are many software packages that provide WSJT support, WSJT-X is my current favorite because it contains both JT65 and JT9 in the same package and also becasue it’s written by the originator of WSJT, Dr. Joe Taylor.  First step is to Google “wsjt-x”.

wsjt-x > WSJTX – Physics > Latest Windows release:1.7 > WSJTX_xxxxxxx.exe

Installation:  Accept all defaults, then:

Click setup and check the boxes for items 4 through 12.  Next click “configuration” and the following screen will pop up  (click to enlarge).  This sample configuration works for having an external interface.  For radios with USB interfaces scroll down to a blog posting farther down.  This is the screen to put in your call sign and grid locator.

wsjt-x config1

2. Timing setup to keep a pc accurate to within 1 second:

Meinberg is but one example of a way to keep your pc clock accurate to within one second. It’s my favorite.

Free Download NTP Software ntp-4.2.8p9-win32-setup.exe (3.72 MB)
NTP package with IPv6 support for Windows XP and newer

Accept defaults on each page but watch closely for the word “none”.  When you see the word none, replace it with United States of America.   Create a new login with your call letters and a password of your choice.  Test by running the program “Quick NTP Status”.   If it’s working correctly you should see 3 or more ntp servers listed. If you don’t see three lines similar to the screenshot below, start the meinberg installation over.

screenshot-2017-02-09-08-26-58

3. Finally we install jt-alert:

 jt-alert > HamApps.com > HamApps JTAlert v2.9.0 : Download

Accept defaults and then configure the way you like it.  I did mine this way:

Settings>Manage settings>logging>Standard ADIF File.    Click Enable Standard ADIF File Logging and enter the path of your choice in the field Log File.   I keep my log in the cloud at Dropbox so the file is on the internet and not on any one specific pc.

C:\Users|MarkH\Dropbox\Ham\log.adi

JT-Alert provides all sorts of nice features to make operating easier.  One of my favorites is an audible reminder when each minute is up.

For help and questions, my email address is w0ql-at-arrl.net.

80m Loop Antenna

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80m Loop Antenna

Finally finished, after two full days of tuning. This is the K5RP loop as discussed in ARRL Antenna Compendium no. 2. What a mechanically awkard antenna. It is extremely narrowband, covering only 40kHz of the band between 2:1 swr points and ground interaction is wicked.  I could change the dip frequency by retensioning the wires. The 1:1 bandwidth is 10khz. This narrowness makes tuning more of a challenge because it has to be smack dab on the frequency of choice. The purpose of building this is to help in finishing up my 5 band dxcc award. I still need 8 countries on 80 and the simple verticals of the past have just not been enough from Colorado. This loop is supposed to provide 3db gain over a vertical. The goal is to be able to work cw, psk31, and jt65. That’s more than 40kHz so I compromised. After multiple trips up and down the step ladder, I was able to get a dip at 3.573 mHz, half way between psk and jt65. SWR is 1:1 and resistance is 50 ohms. Very nice. No matching network needed. For the cw portion down to 3.500 I can switch in a tuner. Antenna gain only works with this design at it’s resonant point. Have you played with these loops? I’d really like to hear your experiences.

Construction:

Wire is 14 guage stranded insulated antenna wire from DX Engineering – 560 feet.

Support posts are Army surplus camoflage netting fiber glass poles – 28 feet tall.

I used clothes line pulleys at the 8 corners.

The antenna is two full wave 80 meter loops connected as a two turn coil.