While I wait for my Arrow antenna to arrive, I thought I would experiment and build a dual band tape measure yagi since I already had most of the parts on hand. The Arrow antenna can be broken down and carried in a bag, and it will be my primary antenna to work satellites, but the 70cm part of this antenna came out perfectly resonant at 436.6 MHz. I had to really go outside the box on the 70cm director lengths, but I finished with a combination that tests well.
The 2m portion did not turn out so well, but at 146.600 I ended up with a 1.5 SWR at best. It receives well enough. I’ll tinker with it again and see what I can come up with.
Yesterday, I was able to receive SO-50 (Saudisat 1C) just fine and in my excitement I forgot to start recording on my phone. I didn’t try to make contact, but a lot of what I heard was very clear, and the operators that were hitting the bird with full quieting came back to me the same. Pretty neat stuff!
Today, SO-50 flew overhead and I was better prepared to record the audio and even make contact. What I discovered, however, is that something nearby was transmitting a nice clean carrier on 436.785 thru 486.795 while I was attempting to receive the bird. Well, given that I was out in the driveway using a highly directional antenna, I found that it was coming from my house! I was able to hear a couple transmissions from SO-50, but the rogue carrier pretty much ruined the session. I had not experienced this yesterday…
I set out on a little fox hunt in the house to hunt down the source and found that the downstairs desktop PC was the culprit. Note to self: put that damn thing to sleep next time!
I referenced these sources for the build: