Digital Dive

So … I’ve taken the plunge into DMR radio. I had an unused gift card on Amazon and sprung for a Tytera MD-380 hand-held radio. A ham just a few miles from me has put a UHF DMR repeater on the air. I ordered the radio today and Amazon says that it’ll be here tomorrow. Can’t wait!! (but I’ll have to!)

I keep reading online about how difficult the programming software is, so I checked it out. Maybe if you’re not used to it, but I’ve been building codeplugs for Motorola radios for more years than I care to think. Looks like a piece of cake to me.

I’ve been interested in DMR for a while now, but there was no local repeater within a reasonable range of my QTH. Lots of them to the north, south, east, and west, but none here at ground zero.

There are DStar repeaters near me, but I just couldn’t justify the cost. This little Chinese gem cost less than ninety bucks. Can’t beat that. And … it got pretty good reviews in the November 2017 QST.

I’ve still been keeping up with CW and FT-8 contacts on HF, and the NC QSO Party is this coming Sunday. I’ll be there on HF!

73 de Dick N4BC

Good evening …

Last night was pretty good for propagation:


The one I didn’t get though was Z60C, in Kosovo. I had pretty good copy on both 40 and 80 CW, but the pileups were brutal. Of course, there were the clueless lids calling incessantly on his transmitting frequency, as usual, but there were also a LOT of stations correctly calling on his listening frequency, too. And … a lot of them were packing some serious power, by the sound of them!

Oh well, if I don’t get them today, I’ll get them tomorrow … I DID make another contact on 60 meters!

73 de Dick N4BC … keep the faith, guys!

FT8 January 24th, 2018

Really a booming evening on FT8. I even had a couple of QSOs on the 6o meter band. Forty meters was the most productive.

As you can see, there was a whole lot of propagatin’ goin’ on!

73 de Dick N4BC

Where I was heard


Well, I did a bit of fiddlin’ with WSPR-X this evening. Here’s the results …

Stations that heard me …
Graphic representation of stations hearing me …


I was transmitting 5 watts, using a 31-ft vertical. If you’re more interested in how WSPR-X works, it’s one of the modes included in W1JT’s WSJT-X ver. 1.8.0 software. WSPR is explained at

73 de Dick N4BC