This weekend I worked for the first time from my location here in Trieste, and what could have been a greater test then the WPX Contest.
Guiding myself by the “any antenna is better than no antenna” motto, I used my mobile HF base loading whip, Proxel PRO-X1, mount it on the flag support just with the magnetic base, and hanged only one 5m radial along the building. The radio setup was usual, FT-817, Z817 tuner and N1MM for looging and CW sending with this simple interface I built some time ago.
Didn’t had to much expectations, but for a couple of hours on both Saturday and Sunday afternoons-evenings, I was able to make 70 contacts from 40 to 10m with this modest setup, all EU stations, from every corner of the continent. P3, Cyprus, is to close to consider a DX.
My position at a middle floor, the building in front of me, the antenna close to the wall surely influenced a lot the efficiency of this already compromise antenna. Much noisier than a wire dipole I am used to work, in fact I couldn’t least hear a DX station from NA, JA, UA0. I remember just hearing some stations from Azores, Morocco, that area. Probably the propagation wasn’t helping me to much either, the upper bands were red almost all the weekend:
Two things that I could improve slightly to the antenna is to add some more radials, I might have room for 2 or 3, and try to use it at different inclinations. Now is at 70-80 degrees, and seems too close to the wall. Curious how will perform from 45 to horizontal.
One more minus now is my callsign in CW. Its way too long for the correspondent. I already had in the past a lot of miss copying the HHP suffix , and now by adding the IV3/ complicates things a little bit. In some big contests, when I read the log check report, I can see there how many people are getting my callsign wrong, like HSP, SHP, SSP etc. Usually the percentage was 5%, now I expect a two digits number 🙂