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Was Re: [sarex] Second Mir Voice Contact--Now AO-27

kd9kc@elp.rr.com writes:
> Yep, I had enough trying to work AO-27 on any weekend, I
>  don't need to beat myself up over MIR now too.

With AO-27, "weekend" is the operative word.  Let me report a little 
subjective, but still legitimate, testing relating to your gripe.  I had the 
opportunity to work AO-27 this past Thursday (from work), Friday (I had the 
day off), and Saturday--all mobile with the exact same setup.  On Thursday 
and Friday I had no problem getting into the bird from 5 degrees up to 60 
degrees and had a bunch of nice contacts on both passes on both days:  from 
N7SFI in VT to K6YK in CA, no problem.  After the bird goes south of Texas, 
there is even static at times.

Then there was Saturday.  I pulled down the street where I had a nice view of 
the horizon.  It didn't help.  I put my mobile rig on "high" power (45 
Watts).  It didn't help.  Finally, when the bird was so far south there was 
nobody left but XE2YVW and me, I made a contact.  Whew, what a difference a 
day makes!  

What did I learn?  This bird is by far the most "popular" thing circling the 
globe.  It can be worked with low power and modest antennas during the week.  
But, it takes much more on the weekends.  It also takes some practice and 
timing (a.k.a. skill) to be successful.  The comparison to breaking a pileup 
on HF is pretty accurate.

Don't get frustrated, join the fray.  Besides giving a contact to KI0AG Chuck 
at a hamfest in CO today, in the last 3 minutes of the pass, three rare grids 
showed up:  K6YK John in CM98, W8AKS Marty in DM05 (tnx qsl), and XE2EKY 
Hector in DM22.  I can't think of more fun in such a short time :-))

Jerry, K5OE
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