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hpr2499 :: Tuning around the HF 40Mtr band

In this episode I give an example of what sort of things you can expect hear on the HF band

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Hosted by MrX on 2018-03-01 is flagged as Explicit and is released under a CC-BY-SA license.
ham radio, amateur radio, radio, hf. 4.
The show is available on the Internet Archive at:

Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Play now:

Duration: 00:12:47

HAM radio.

A series about all things Amateur Radio/HAM Radio.

Tuning around the band

In this episode I tune around a small portion of the HF (High Frequency) band in the 40 Meters section which in the UK covers 7 to 7.2Mhz.

Equipment details

The mode being used was mostly LSB (Lower Side Band)

At the end of the recording I briefly switch mode to to listen to a commercial station on AM (Amplitude modulation).

The radio being used is my trusty and much loved Kenwood TS 940S

The antenna used is a dipole tuned for the 40 Meter band.

I used my trusty Dictaphone and internal microphone to do the recording

If you want to hold private conversations with another party over radio then perhaps amateur radio is not for you as this goes against the whole principle of Amateur Radio.

Listening to amateur radio broadcasts is actively encouraged, and in the UK a licence is not required for listening.

A simple receiver capable of listening to sideband broadcasts and odd bit of long wire is all that's required.

In the past it was common to hear an Amateur operator saying goodbye to any short wave listeners at the end of their conversation. If you listen carefully at about 10 minutes in the station DF2BO says goodbye to anybody still listening.

Stations received

  • DF2BO speaking to Peter VK4ZP in Brisbane Queensland, on 7.16209 MHz

  • CW station calling CQ on 7.00994 MHz, I don't know the callsign or details of the station as I can't read Morse code however I did recognise the distinctive rhythm of the letters C and Q.

  • Transmitting the letters CQ on a particular radio frequency is used as an invitation for any operators listening on that frequency to respond. It is widely used in amateur radio.

  • German station unidentified on 7.15794 MHz

  • DF2BO name, Tom, near Stuttgart speaking to Rob VK2XZ who I can't hear on 7.16200 MHz, then speaking briefly with Chris VK2SR who I can't hear

  • Another brief bit of morse code

  • An unknown commercial station broadcasting on 7.35520 on AM


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Comment #1 posted on 2018-03-06 20:33:46 by Michael

Great show!

I love the idea of tuning around and simply demonstrating what you can hear. However, I would suggest to add a bit more of commentary to make it more meaningful to those who not already know what they are listening to.

Let me add, that the morse code (CW) signal in both cases was a french station F5IN. Calling CQ DX, a general call for far away stations, in the first bit and just finishing a transmission in a contact in the second one.

When Tom, DF2BO, described his antenna set up, this left me mouth gaping. Yagis 2 elements on 80m (3.5Mhz) and 3 elements on 40m (7Mhz)! These are monsters, way beyond what any "normal" amateur will be able to put up. Just an amazing configuration, that almost makes me drool, when thinking about... I think this is the kind of background information that makes sense to add, to put the audio in context.

Regards, Michael

Comment #2 posted on 2018-03-10 16:46:45 by MrX

re Great show!

Hi Michael, many thanks for the comment, glad you enjoyed the show and your probably correct that a bit of commentary might have been a good idea. There was a couple of reasons that I chose not to add any commentary first it made the podcast easier to make but the real reason was that I was trying to create a bit of mystery for people that had never heard the strange sounds you'd find when tuning around the amateur radio HF band which I thought might be the case for a large portion of the audience.

When I was a young boy I remember listening to old second world war valved receivers that I occasionally had access to and was fascinated by the strange sounds and voices having no idea what I was listening to I thought initially giving no explanation would create more intrigue for those that had never heard HF before and if there interest was gripped then they could have a look for some show notes. I'll probably add some commentary next time if I do a similar show.

PS many thanks for deciphering the Morse code (CW), and yes that was some incredible set-up DF2BO had certainly beats my half wave dipole flung in the loft :)

Comment #3 posted on 2021-05-19 14:29:18 by Dave (thelovebug)

Coming to this late, but wow!

Having just joined the ranks of Amateur Radio users, it made sense for me to look for HPR episodes relating to Amateur Radio.

I loved this episode, very interesting listening to conversations on the 40m band... real hard-core users on 7MHz!

I did notice that the German station DF2BO wasn't using the NATO Phonetic Alphabet, is this a common occurrence?

Comment #4 posted on 2021-05-29 17:22:56 by MrX

Re: Coming to this late, but wow!

Hi Dave sorry for taking a bit of time to reply. I noticed the comment flag up in my RSS reader and then promptly forgot all about it as things have been crazy busy here. I only remembered thanks to a gentle prod by Dave Morriss.

Glad you enjoyed the show. By coincidence I turned my HF set on just last week something I hadn’t done for a good long while. I must admit to being a bit rusty with the latest rules and regulations but I seem to remember that certainly here in the UK you are encouraged to use the NATO Phonetic Alphabet. I’ve certainly heard various stations using different Phonetics. Perhaps they think it’s easier to hear under noisy conditions or perhaps they just like the sound of it. Personally I just stick with the NATO Phonetic Alphabet.

Dave mentioned you recently became an Amateur, so many congratulations. I’m sure you’ll have lots of fun with the hobby as there are so many directions it can take you.

All the best


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