> I realize this is a long shot, but...am looking for a PS-4
> polarity switch that was used with the 416-TB, 70CM,
> antenna. Any information about this switch would really be appreciated. Tks
> Bruce KEØLX
Hi Bruce !
Can't help you with the original PS-4 unfortunately, but ..
I just finished documenting what I did in the past 3 weeks with my 416TB.
See http://www.pa3guo.com (click on ANTENNAS, click on Cuchcraft 416TB).
"Modification of the Cushcraft 416TB (2x8 elements) 70cm antenna"
(add switchable circular polarization)
Cushcraft provided with the 416TB antenna a polarization 'phasing harnesss'
that allows either fixed LHCP or RHCP. For years I used RHCP and was fully
satified with the performance (AO51, VO52, FO29, Cute-II, ...) Click here
for the original Cushcraft 416TB Manual (pdf):
Below a picture of the harness as I had it mounted (fixed RHCP) for years:
With AO51's 435.150 MHz downlink I had an issue as that applies LHCP.
I could clearly notice the signal strength difference between 435.300
(RHCP, strong) and 435.150 (LHCP, hardly audible). Then when AO51 started
to apply repeater modes on 435.150 as well, which I now was starting to
miss out on, I wanted to be able to switch between LHCP and RHCP.
As I had only one relay available (these projects alway start on Sundays
when shops are closed), the option of HOR/VER/LHCP/RHCP was dropped and
only switching between LHCP/RHCP remained.
>From various sources on the internet and an article of Domenico Marini,
I8CVS, ("Switching four Polarizations on a 70cm Crossed Yagi", AMSAT
Journal May/June 2007) I derived the set-up needed for the Cushcraft 416TB,
which has both antennas at 1/4 lambda distance separated from eachother
(A - B in the diagram below):
The original Cushcraft harness basically consisted of Z1 and Z2 only, and
RCHP vs LHCP was selected by swapping the conductor & shielding at the feedpoint
of the front dipole.
In the new above set-up, LHCP is obtained when the relay is excited
(signal travels through Y2), else the resulting polarization is RHCP.
Z1 and Z2 form the impedance transformers, which transform the 50 ohm of each
dipol into 100 ohm, which are then connected in parallel resulting in 50 ohm.
Y2 is the phase shifter: if enabled the signal from/to the front dipol is
shifted 180 degrees (1.2 wave).
For Z1 and Z2 I used RG59B/U (75 ohm): V=0.66: ((300/435)*0.66)/4= 11.4cm.
X1 and X2 just need to be identical in length, I have used 40 cm Aircell (50 ohm).
u1 and u2 need to be identical in length, u2 is a small piece of copperwire between the relay pins (~4mm).
Y1 needs to be 1/2 wave longer as u2, I used Aircell (50ohm): V=0.83: (((300/435)*0.83)/2)+4mm= 29.0cm
U1 is created by soldering the conductors of the two coax cables directly
together and putting a closed copper shielding around that (by soldering the
shieldings/braids of the two coax cables together and around the conductor)
to form again a shielding. Refer to point 'u1' in the picture of the box below.
Domenico Marini advices in his article to use proper coax relay and in general
describes a more perfect system, including HOR/VER/LHCP/RHCP options. I have
chosen a much cheaper and simpler implementation, which is most likely also
less accurate. So for those that want to built this system as well, I recomment
them to read the article of Domenico first and decide themselves how to built.
Do not only refer to my implementation described here.
I have used a simple SDS S2-12V relay, which is expected to work up to 450 MHz.
Key is to keep all wires as short as possible. All coax braids (shieldings) have
to be soldered together via the shortest possible way. See the yellow circle in the
picture of the box. Parallel to the relay I have mounted an LED, which makes it
easy to be able to see without a voltage meter (eg outside standing at the roof)
if the 12V is present in the box or not:
Again: using a real coax relay would have been much better. Using a waterproof
metal box instead of my plastic one would have been better as well, but I didn't
have one and it would have made the construction much heavier. But as I am not
aiming for an EME station I decided to give this implementation a try.
First I stripped the antenna and removed the original phasing harness:
The baluns are carefully removed and cleaned as I needed them also in the new set-up:
Next the actual switch was made and placed in a 220V outdoor box (waterproof) and mounted in the tower:
Just comparing the 435.150 and 435.300 downlinks of AO51 I concluded the system works:
- In the past I could not hear the 435.150 downlink. Now I can; by selecting the correct polarization.
- Signal strength of the 435.300 downlink has not decreased compared to the past (the fixed Cushcraft harness).
With a few pieces of coax, a waterproof housing and a relay a Cushcraft 416TB
can be upgraded from fixed Circular Polarization (CP) to (remote) switchable
Left or Right Hand Circular Polarization (LHCP or RHCP).
Implementation has been done using spare parts as I needed LHCP/RHCP to become
available quickly. However, a next time, instead of a normal relay, I will use
a coax relay as it is expected to give better mechanical stability and improved
Is there a recording of this last pass?
Sherry KJ4DUN (my better half and a new ham) made what I am to believe the
last NA contact.
NEGARC Activities Manager
>> Congratulations to the following stations I could pull out of Richard's
>> (reported) last transmission.
>> VE3ECO, VE3KHQ, KA9ERV, KC9EIZ, W?KWQ, N0UOE, W4CMB, KS4RX, W5KSI,
>> KN4F, WA1QDP, W4NTF AND KJ4DUN.
A little bit of ham radio history could be yours; I am having a tidy up, and
have put this up for auction on ePay:
Among other things it was used to make the first transatlantic 1200 bps PSK
packet contact (via FO-12 in late 1986) with Tom Clark W3IWI, now K3IO.
Somewhere I still have the cassette tape ...
The TNC2 (serial #1587) was also used to develop my 9600 baud Packet Radio
modem, which happily went on to become a de-facto standard. Older readers
probably know what that is/was, but anyway you can read about it at:
http://tinyurl.com/5jxhlf and at http://tinyurl.com/6dn5r3
Kind friends occasionally ask after me. Well, whilst waiting for the next
HEO, this project http://tinyurl.com/6yfqp4 and P5A keeps me alert, as does
this product http://tinyurl.com/unva6 And a teenage daughter keeps me
Best wishes to friends at Atlanta this weekend!
73 de James G3RUH (former AO-13 and AO-40 Command Station)
James R Miller WWW/PGP: http://www.jrmiller.demon.co.uk/
Cambridge, England Stardate: 2008 Oct 24 [Fri] 1544 utc
I realize this is a long shot, but...am looking for a PS-4
polarity switch that was used with the 416-TB, 70CM,
antenna. Any information about this switch would really be appreciated. Tks
On the 1820Z October 23 2008 Richard confirm that this pass will be his last one as he will dismantle his radio setup as he will be in the
process of preparing for his return to earth. He say "goodbye and see you the 12"
Luc Leblanc VE2DWE
WAC BASIC CW PHONE SATELLITE
I'll be presenting my "How to Work Amateur Satellites with your HT"
multimedia extravaganza tomorrow in the San Diego area. We'll attempt
to work SO-50 as it passes at 10:31AM Pacific time (1731 GMT).
All are welcome to attend. Lunch at Filippi’s Pizza Grotto, 5353
Kearny Villa Rd., San Diego - right across from the San Diego Ham
Radio Outlet store. We'll work SO-50 from HRO, then migrate to the
restaurant for the presentation and lunch.
Clint Bradford, K6LCS
Hello everyone. Does anyone have a recording of the ISS pass over the UK for the 22 October around 11:30 AM when he was calling some scottsh stations ? If so coould you please email it to me at mm3ycg(a)btinternet.com as two of my friends were lucky enough to catch richard and would like to hear the recording if anyone has it. 73.
The text file (_http://www.amsat.org/amsat/ariss/news/arissnews.txt_
(http://www.amsat.org/amsat/ariss/news/arissnews.txt) ) indicates whether an ARISS
contact is expected to be retransmitted via Echolink, IRLP (there are 2 ways to
listen if using IRLP, more down below), or any other media. This is purely
at the discretion of the ham crew and the school where the contact is to take
place if the contact is to be a direct one. We at ARISS encourage this to
happen but we are not in control; the local hams and the school are. So when
I say should be on Echolink and IRLP; it means exactly that. We have been
told that the Armada contact will have audio provided to both Echolink and
IRLP; but there can always be a last minute problem that will prevent that from
happening. If the contact is a telebridge, then just about all of the
contacts are retransmitted via Echolink and IRLP. For some schools, the use of
Echolink or IRLP is a last minute thing; so sometimes we don't know until very
When I post my announcements to the various bulletin boards, I try to
indicate whether Echolink and IRLP is a possibility. Sometimes Kenneth gets later
last minute news and he posts that info. Not all schools have the ability to
even do one or the other. Many of the schools do not have an IRLP or
Echolink repeater nearby. With Echolink you could go directly to a computer and
then to the Echolink system; unfortunately, many schools have firewalls that
prevent that from happening. I think for the Armada contact the audio will be
going out via Skype and then our IRLP and Echolink ham interfaces will pick
up the audio and retransmit it to the 2 systems. As Kenneth pointed out, you
can listen to the contact via the IRLP website at the Discovery Reflector. Or
if you have an IRLP repeater nearby, go to 9010 .
Everyone should be aware that there is a delay between real time and when
the audio comes out of IRLP. Sometimes it is about 2 minutes; it could be more
The best place to find information of any contact is to wait for the
announcements that are sent out by Kenneth or me (usually I have the first posting).
We are as close as one can get to the latest news.
So once again, here is the link to latest news and instructions for all of
Here is the link if you want to listen via the web to the IRLP feed (you do
not have to have an IRLP license or anything, just a computer that get to the
world wide web):
If you want to use Echolink:
Please give the EchoLInk EDU_NET server your preference over the EchoLink
AMSAT server for your connection. This will keep the load light on the
AMSAT server, assuring us of better audio quality all around.
You can connect to the AMSAT Conference Room server at node 101377.
Audio is also available at times on the JK1ZRW server at node 277208. Please
connect to the *JK1ZRW* server to keep the load light on the *AMSAT* server.
This will ensure good audio quality for all listeners.
Of course if you are in the ISS footprint, then listen directly to the
downlink at 145.80 MHz.
Hope this helps.
By the way, hope you all made contact with Richard over the last few days.
If you had a blast following him, ARISS suggests that you help out a local
school, fill out the application and get on the waiting list for school
contact. It is well worth the effort.
Charlie Sufana AJ9N
One of the ARISS mentors
In a message dated 10/23/2008 3:27:55 P.M. Central Daylight Time,
IRLP streaming of ARISS school contacts is often available via the IRLP
discovery reflector. Try this link
Kenneth - N5VHO
From: amsat-bb-bounces(a)amsat.org [mailto:[email protected]] On
Behalf Of Curt Nixon
Sent: Thursday, October 23, 2008 3:18 PM
Subject: [amsat-bb] Re: Web streaming ARISS School Contact?
SO...based upon the info in that text doc, the contact SHOULD be on IRLP
I can find no information in support of that...but it makes no
difference..the whole question is whether it will be available via a
website so civilians can get it? No access to IRLP or Echolink.
It would be a shame for any of these contacts to go without some kind of
Am I missing something?
> Hi all,
> Every time I post the ARISS announcements, you will see a file to grab
> that has the complete schedule and any instructions for Echolink and
> Here is a part of the announcement I sent last night:
> The complete schedule page has been updated as of 2008-10-23 04:00
> UTC. (***)
> Here you will find a listing of all scheduled school contacts, and
> questions, other ISS related websites, IRLP and Echolink websites, and
> instructions for any contact that may be streamed live.
> Hope this helps.
> Charlie Sufana AJ9N
> One of the ARISS mentors
> In a message dated 10/23/2008 9:43:09 A.M. Central Daylight Time,
> cptcurt(a)flash.net writes:
> I had found information on listening to the ARISS School contact
> week at the Challenger Center but can not find anything
> site to listen in on the Armada Michigan contact tomorrow at 17:13
> I have a classroom with web access but no Echolink that would like
> listen to the contact.
> Someone point me to the information??
> Sent via AMSAT-BB(a)amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the
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Sent via AMSAT-BB(a)amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
Not an AMSAT-NA member? Join now to support the amateur satellite
Subscription settings: http://amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/amsat-bb
Sent via AMSAT-BB(a)amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
Not an AMSAT-NA member? Join now to support the amateur satellite program!
Subscription settings: http://amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/amsat-bb
**************Play online games for FREE at Games.com! All of your favorites,
no registration required and great graphics – check it out!
Lucky enough to get a contact at 16:42 UTC 10/23/08.
What is the QSL address for a contact with Richard Garriott (NA1SS)
Minot, North Dakota
anelson(a)min.midco.net - w0tup(a)arrl.net
Ward County - Grid Locator DN98if
SKCC 31T - Flying Pigs 590 - QRPp-I #760
ARRL - FISTS #8610 - CC #1310 - FISTS WAS #143
FISTS PLATINUM #365 - FISTS SILVER #367
ARRL SSTV WAS #33 - IVCA MIXED BAND SSTV #1
40 MTR CW WAS - DXCC # 39623
RTTY WAS # 585 - A1 OPERATOR CLUB
COMMERCIAL RADIO OPERATORS LICENSE
CLUB CALL - WØJER (MAGIC CITY QRP CLUB)
FISTS #11975 SKCC #1000
Two antennas met on a tower, fell in love and
got married. The ceremony wasn't much, but the
reception was excellent.