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Old 10-20-2019, 04:31 PM   #1
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HF radio - poor USCG weather reception on 6.501

Does anyone have an idea why USCG weather broadcast out of Kodiak on 6.501 kHz (USB) is so miserably poor? On the west end of Kodiak Island I had no trouble communicating on 3902 HF with Fairbanks in mainland Alaska and Juneau over 600 miles away. Yet I was less about 55 miles from the Kodiak USCG station and the weather broadcast was barely audible. I have had the same reception problem in Prince William Sound 235 miles from Kodiak. Years ago the USCG used to broadcast the weather on 4125 and reception was great. Not so on 6501.
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Old 10-21-2019, 09:38 AM   #2
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We had problems all summer in SE Alaska with the NOAA weather radio. The Cape Fanshaw weather radio was down all summer and through Sept. and may still be.

We contacted NOAA who told us that the weather radios are maintained by the Coast Guard. Coast Guard told us that the radio was to be fixed by June 30th 2019. Never was. There also appears to be many inoperable Coast Guard radio relay stations inoperable in SE Alaska at this time (and were all during the summer) with the Coast Guard asking mariners to relay activity.

Not sure what's going on. Perhaps lack of funds for repair or maybe a desire to switch it all to for profit commercial. Pisses me off as it puts peoples life in danger. Saw a program that said that the former head/owner of Accu-Weather has been put in charge of the National Weather Service!

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Old 10-21-2019, 09:57 AM   #3
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55 miles is a bit close for working the 6 MHz band. Lower is better (4 MHz)
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Old 10-21-2019, 10:21 AM   #4
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Have you tried tests with LED lights on and off? You may find that your LED lights cause interference.

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Old 10-21-2019, 11:41 AM   #5
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diver dave, I didn't choose 6.501 kHz, the USCG chose it for weather broadcasts. Regardless, 55 miles is not too close, ground wave should have sufficed.

JDCAVE, no LED lights.
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Old 10-21-2019, 12:04 PM   #6
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HFLINK - HF Automatic Link Establishment HF ALE HF Network Ham Radio Amateur Radio HF Emergency Disaster Relief Communications.

My experience is different. 50, up to 150 miles, I found 6 or 7 MHz to fail, and 2 to 4 MHz much better. We don't share the same cruising grounds, but do share the same sun and ionosphere. Lots of propagation charts out there, day/nite obviously a factor too. good luck !

PS, this ground wave is a function of the antenna. A HF transmit antenna optimized for low angles of radiation for long distance, will simply not put energy close (within 100 miles) to the ground near the transmit site.
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Old 11-09-2019, 08:38 PM   #7
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Don't expect too much in SE for a few years...came across this article in Cordova paper which explains who does the maintenance and the issues going on...keep the EPIRBs up to speed.



https://www.thecordovatimes.com/2019...th-channel-16/
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Old 11-09-2019, 09:09 PM   #8
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If I lived there, I would be contacting my congress rep and senators constantly until they put enough pressure on the CG to get something done. If they donít help then vote in new representatives.
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Old 11-10-2019, 08:45 AM   #9
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Thanks! I've sent it on to other SE AK captains and fisherfolks.

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Old 11-10-2019, 01:01 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Comodave View Post
If I lived there, I would be contacting my congress rep and senators constantly until they put enough pressure on the CG to get something done. If they donít help then vote in new representatives.
I know our one Congressman, Don Young with Senators Dan Sullivan, Lisa Murkowski are very much aware. They just can't seem to get any funding bills through Congress due to the Impeachment circus.......
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