RSGB confirms some British JT65/JT9 5 MHz signals out of band

Looks like my last post has had an effect……..

From RSGB News today

“Keep legal on 5MHz

The RSGB Amateur Radio Observation Service has noted several examples of
British JT65 and JT9 mode transmissions straying outside of the UK
allocated band slots.

It is understood that software commonly used by UK licensees for the
production of signals in both modes uses default 5MHz band preset
frequencies of 5.357MHz for JT65 or 5.359MHz for JT9.
After applying the audio offset to the AFSK signal in JT65 mode, using
these presets will, in the majority of cases, cause the transmission to
fall outside of the upper band edge of the UK allocation of 5.354MHz to
In the case of JT9, if the default of 5.359MHz is used then all
transmissions will be outside of the UK allocation.

Users of these modes are requested to check that their transmissions
fall within the allocated spectrum.”

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UK Hams operating outside 5MHz band limits

This week I returned to the 5 MHz band and specifically the JT65/JT9 data section around 5.357 MHz.

Here in the UK we do not have a continuous 5 MHz band, it is split up into smaller allocated parts UK 5 MHz allocation and this ‘bandlet’ is 5.354-5.358 MHz which means no part of a UK Radio Amateurs transmission should be any higher than 5.358 MHz.

JT65 signals are 200 Hz wide so when operating on USB the highest frequency you can use in the UK is actually 5.357 +800 Hz or 5.357800 MHz otherwise your transmission will be above the 5.358 MHz maximum permitted.

60m UK data

It is clear from observing the UK 5 MHz band that some (new to JT65/JT9 data mode) UK Hams may not understand the band limits and how JT65 signals can easily be transmitted out of band.

Last night I observed two UK stations well above 5.358 MHz and transmitting well outside the permitted UK allocation. They were

M0N** JT9 5.358.57 MHz 16:34-16:40 utc 03.12.2015 calling A61BK

M1P** JT65 5.358.68 MHz 17:48 utc 03.12.2015, later seen at 5.359.0 MHz and also chasing A61BK

Screenshots of the HamSpots Cluster Spots page HamSpots were taken by me showing other Amateur Stations also reporting seeing both these stations clearly transmitting outside the permitted UK 5 MHz band allocation.

What concerns me the most is that this behaviour threatens all our access to the 5 MHz band as it only takes the primary user to observe this and potentially we could lose our access. Their working the DX station also would not be legitimate either.

Elsewhere in the World the JT65/JT9 activity is permitted from 5.357-5.361 MHz plus and they can operate without having to stay within our narrow 1000 Hz wide section that falls within the rest of the World’s allocation, but if they do we cannot call them back unless we transmit in our own allocation lower down in frequency and either encourage them to join us there or work split frequency.

Seen the next day

M0A** JT65 5.358.28 MHz 15:50 utc 04.12.2015 working PA0ING

G3J** JT65 5.358.18 MHz 16:29 utc 04.12.2015 working LA4CQ




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Yaesu ATAS-120A problem fixed

My vehicle mounted Yaesu ATAS-120A antenna suddenly stopped working yesterday, the antenna lowered itself right down and then wouldn’t tune again or move.

I disassembled the antenna completely today suspecting either water damage from the horror stories shown online of water ingress or a failed solder joint, neither was correct the antenna looked like new inside.

Back on my vehicle the ATAS-120A still wouldn’t work, so I disconnected the power supply from my Yaesu FT-857D radio and reconnected it.

This time the antenna showed INIT on the radio display when I tried to tune and after about 30 seconds it worked perfectly again.

Wish I had done that first before I took it all apart!

73 de Philip G0ISW

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Julian G4ILO SK

Very sad news for me is the recent passing of Julian G4ILO who is now SK after his long battle with serious illness.

I never met Julian in person, but we shared almost exactly the same interests at the same time in amateur radio such as SOTA, QRP, Elecraft KX3, APRS, WSPR etc. and we communicated our enthusiasm and ideas to each other via the WWW.

Every day I use Julian’s amateur radio software, that he developed himself for the benefit of us all, such as VOAProp for assessing real-time HF conditions.

73 de Philip G0ISW

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Little activity on UK 2M or 70CM UK repeaters heard

I drove down from Cumbria to Hampshire just over a week ago (and back again the next day) and noted very little activity on any 2M or 70CM repeaters during the middle of the day, despite me putting out frequent calls.

How times have changed. I heard one QSO the entire journey and that was about someone talking about the door of their wardrobe being faulty. Despite amateur radio license numbers in the UK apparently still in healthy figures, the number of operators on the Air definitely seems to have diminished on VHF/UHF FM.

Also the quality of the conversations and operating standards have gone downhill a lot since 1983, I seldom if ever hear anyone now talking about technical matters anymore, just silly things that never used to be prevalent in this hobby.

Not a good week.

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