Ham Radio

Handy Software for Meteor Scatter

The previous pages are good for the Icom IC-7100. Now, generally speaking, there are several other resources that everyone should consider using to enhance their VFH and Meteor Scatter experience.

Dimension4 screen shot

Dimension4 Time Synch

This software synchronizes your computer's clock with a time server on the Internet.

Several good software packages are available. Dimension4 is widely used:

Dimension4 screen shot

BktTimeSync

If you have GPS but no Internet, then BktTimeSync adjusts your computer's clock using the GPS. It works very well with Bluetooth, USB and serial GPS units, and it's free.

  • BktTimeSync
  • Version 1.4.1 is current at time or writing (July 2014).

Ping Jockey Client

Ping Jockey Central is a valuable chat room by N0UK for arranging contacts and watching activity.

  • PJ Client - software is the best way to enter the chat room.
    Find the link at "Dan (N5TM) has created an excellent new PJ Client".
  • PJ Web page - is a basic way to join the chat room.
DX Maps online

DX Maps Online

This web page shows you VHF openings in real time. The DXMAPS website is a good tool for monitoring for VHF/UHF band openings (10m and higher). The site collects and plots cluster spots and propagation mode information on a world map in real-time. This includes spots from CW Skimmers which monitor beacons on the VHF and UHF bands. This allows one to determine when a VHF/UHF band is open and the directions for possible QSOs from one's location. As you can see from the picture, there was a solid 6m opening on this particular day from my California into the Midwest.

Grid Tracking Maps

WG7J's GridMapper webpage

DX Labs grid reports

azimuthal equidistant map server ( http://www.wm7d (dot) net/azproj.shtml ) which produces on-line great circle maps centered at your QTH. This can (?) produce "Most Wanted Grids" maps from this European list e.g. ( http://www.wm7d (dot) net/az_proj/images/wanted_cc.png ).


More Reading

The 6m band is often called the "magic band" because it exhibits many different propagation modes including Sporadic E (Es), Tropo, Aurora, Iconoscatter, Meteor Scatter and even Earth-Moon-Earth (EME or "Moon Bounce"). You can find a good introduction to the magic band, its propagation possibilities and some ideas on how to get started on 6m on these sites:

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