More JT65; Switzerland on 80 meters

The bands were in terrible shape tonight: High background noise, static crashes, little activity, etc. I figured conditions were perfect for heading down to 14.076 USB for some weak signal work on JT65.

After having some beginner’s luck the first night out with JT65, I’ve been disappointed the last few evenings. Last night I don’t think anyone came back to me. I felt like I was destined for the same fate this evening, until W8FDV out of Arizona replied. Then 20 meters dried up — the band was just too noisy — so I switched down to 40 meters, USB, and had a fairly clean signal. There were also many more QSOs popping up in the waterfall, and before long I logged a contact with KB0PPQ out of Kansas.

I decided to shut down, but before I did, I switched over to 80 meters and made a neat contact with HB9KNA out of Switzerland, despite a good bit of background noise.

I’m still not sure how I like JT65. I find the QSO process a bit tedious and my slipshod non-interface probably isn’t helping. I’ve found my best results are typically when I’m seeing less than 20 watts on my meter. I’m having a hard time keeping the audio consistent, but then again, I am just sticking a mic up to the speaker grill on this laptop, so the fact I can make any QSO at all is somewhat fascinating.

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