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Valley LARS receiver locations

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Valley LARS receiver locations

Old 5th Jun 2017, 04:53
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: The Wild West (UK)
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Valley LARS receiver locations

I fly with a Yaesu 550 handheld and the other day was embarrassed not to be able to raise Valley LARS even though I was flying down the Menai straits and could hear them talking about me ('aircraft presumed to be a microlight...').

One would presume their receiver and transmitter is located at Valley, but are there any repeaters? Normally I'm quite happy sans-radio but on weekdays there are times when it would seem prudent to keep in touch with them where possible.
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Old 5th Jun 2017, 07:04
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Join Date: Mar 2017
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You are not alone in experiencing poor radio reception along the straights. I have flown it several times and often have to turn the squelch level up in order to hear the reply especially when down to 1500 ft due being asked to descend due to entering an area of high traffic density. I have a good panel mounted radio and it is no better on the other box so I know the problem is not my end! It has been like this for years.
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Old 5th Jun 2017, 10:04
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RAF airfields normally only have one Tx/Rx site and that's usually close to the airfield, so in the Menai Straits you might nave been a bit shielded from their receivers. Don't forget they will transmit at much greater power than an aircraft radio, hence you could hear them but they couldn't hear you.
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Old 5th Jun 2017, 14:16
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Join Date: Nov 2005
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In radio coms transmitter power does not make much difference to range it is the aerial.

This depends on how well it is matched to the transmitter and the design. In the old cb radios the aerial had to be tuned to get maximum radiated energy. To receive most times a bit of wet string would do. So if short range on transmit the aerial installation may be the problem, standing wave ratio, Aerial length and ground plain all affect the signal take off from the aerial. If these are not good transmitter power make little difference.

With a good aerial a couple of watts can go round the world. I remember when overhead Stapleford talking to some ground station in north west France that was very unhappy I was on their frequency which was the same as Stapleford. When I told them my location they shut up.
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Old 5th Jun 2017, 15:21
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Join Date: May 1999
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abgd, at what altitude were you flying?

Incidentally, the 8.33-compliant FTA-450L (although Comm only) is eligible for the CAA 20% subsidy as there's still money left if you're quick - the FTA-550 won't be useable in the UK except on 121.5 after the end of the year.
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Old 5th Jun 2017, 23:45
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Join Date: Nov 2005
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BEagle 2000 agl was a weather effect hot summer day which caused the signal to bounce as in a wave guide. Known effect I think called skip.
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Old 6th Jun 2017, 00:43
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I was at about 1400ft. The transmitter comes with a small whip aerial so arguably does pretty well already all things considered. I'd like to replace it with something better, but access to the turtledeck of the aircraft isn't easy.

I've just google-mapped the distance I was trying to transmit - about 15 miles and more than I realised - so in retrospect I think it was unfair of me to expect it to work.

My radio does 8.33 already so I hope I don't need to change it - I forget the exact model.
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Old 6th Jun 2017, 09:05
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Join Date: May 1999
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1400ft is pushing it for a 5W handheld using the basic antenna.

Some sporadic-E on Friday, certainly on broadcast FM VHF, but whether that affected your signal, I don't know. But I doubt it.

The Yaesu 550 isn't listed as being 8.33 compatible - is there some modification available to achieve that?
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Old 6th Jun 2017, 09:13
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Join Date: Sep 2011
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Perhaps we're looking at a different 550. Mine thinks it's 8.33 compatible:

https://www.hamradio.co.uk/userfiles...tification.pdf
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