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Old 18-05-2022, 18:25   #1
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Question New radio debugging

I have just installed an ICOM803, with AT-140 tuner, using my backstay (with isolators) as antenna. I connected the antenna wire with a stainless crimp. I tried using KISS as ground as well as an existing copper strip (left by the previous owner). My problem is that apart from static noise I receive no useful sound on any channel. At one stage, when I first got things hooked up I did get WX voice (6501) from AL (I am in Bremerton, WA) - very faint and garbled but at least something. Now I don't even get that. Any suggestions on how to figure out what's wrong?
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Old 18-05-2022, 18:36   #2
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Re: New radio debugging

Good for you. Many don't try or try and give up.

If you're in a crowded marina or near electrical activity, and in fresh or brackish water, it will be hard to get good receive performance. You will have to go someplace electrically quiet, away from other boats and buildings. This was an expensive lesson for me.

The KISS ground will not work as well as a ground plate. Not sure what the copper strip is but if it's clean and there are several square feet in contact with the sea you should be ok as long as you are in salt water.

Electrical noise from your own boat can be limiting, shut off everything at the breakers if in doubt. Once you figure out what the noise sources are you won't have to do that, you can just shut off the troublemakers.


Check performance when it's dark. The sun is a source of electrical noise. With skill and careful choice of operating frequency it can usually be overcome but start with the easy lessons -- at night.
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Old 18-05-2022, 18:55   #3
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Re: New radio debugging

I'm kind of stating the obvious here ... but before anything else make sure that the station you are trying to listen to is transmitting ... unlike the VHF, the HF weather stations don't broadcast continuously.



WX broadcast times from USCG:

https://www.weather.gov/marine/uscg_broadcasts
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Old 18-05-2022, 20:09   #4
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Re: New radio debugging

Another one to go an test is WWV on 10 MHz, out of Boulder, CO. It’s a continuous broadcast of the current time.
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Old 18-05-2022, 21:25   #5
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Re: New radio debugging

Thank you all.
@Kelkara: that explained all the zzzs in the broadcast frequency table you referenced - I assumed that since they use a synthesized voice, the broadcasts are continuous!
@Jammer: indeed, I started hearing more after dark. Not that I am any wiser as to what they said but it was definitely human voice (well, kind of).
@hjohnson: yes, indeed, 10Mhz is definitely coming though now. Thanks again! I thought I had my wires crossed.
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