Thursday, December 22, 2016

MERRY CHRISTMAS & HAPPY NEW YEAR

Hello and Welcome Back...Well, Its that time of year again...

Just wanted to say a big 'MERRY CHRISTMAS' and Happy New Year to all readers of this site.

Hope Santa brings you your desired pressie, whatever it may be..

Stay safe and see you in 2017...




P.S .. I'm available to program your Uniden UBCD396 scanner...SEE HERE..

SYDNEY TO HOBART YACHT RACE

Hello and welcome back... This Boxing Day (Dec26th) will see a plethora of boats / Yachts hit Sydney Harbour in one of biggest events (kinda like Bathurst1000 but for boats)...
The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

You can listen to the boats all the way to Tasmania on Shortwave (USB)

FREQUENCIES  (Race Control Callsign = JBW)
4483Khz USB
6516Khz  USB
156.800 - Ch 16 (Distress, safety,calling)
157.050/161.650 - Ch21 (Tasmania weather, port opps)
157.075/161.675 - Ch81 (Tasmania Coastguard / rescue)
156.650 - Ch 13 (Sydney Harbour Control / Traffic)

Race starts 1pm

Coverage on 7 Network / ABC TV


LINKS

http://www.rolexsydneyhobart.com/

http://www.rolexsydneyhobart.com/the-yachts/ (Boats, Sail No, Type)

https://twitter.com/rshyr

https://www.facebook.com/RolexSydneyHobart

http://www.rolexsydneyhobart.com/tracker/ (Yacht Tracker)


Please, Don't forget to shout me a coffee (see link top right corner).. Any amount big or small is much appreciated and it keeps this site happening :)

#Sydney Hobart Frequencies
#YachtRaceFrequencies



Friday, December 16, 2016

RADIO MAGAZINES

Hello and welcome back... I'll be the first to admit... I live in the past.

Growing up, i started to get into scanners / radios around when i was 15 (1985).
I used to love reading the radio magazines that were out at that time as well, not to mention the Dick Smith and Tandy Electronic Catalogs (they were kinda like a thick magazine)..**Still Do :)

The various Australian Magazines around the late 80s / early 90s included
CB Action
Amateur Radio Action
Radio & Communications (after CB Action & Amateur Radio Action magazines merged)
Radio Mag (follow from R&C magazine??)
Silicon Chip (still going)
Critical Comms (also still going)
Electronics Australia
73 for Radio Amateurs
Listening In??

Did i miss any?? Please comment in the 'Comments' section below

It was the magazine 'Radio and Communications' that led me to create this site, kinda an electronic version of it, so to speak..Except the Radio and Communications magazine had 2 good things going for it..
Its authors/writers

Two really good writers come to mind that were brilliant & passionate about their hobby and made it one of my fav magazines.
Russell Bryant and Bob Bell.
Russell wrote the Scanning Secrets (among others) column while Bob wrote all thing aircraft (On the Airbands), etc, etc...
Sadly Bob is no longer with us.

I really miss that magazine...

Some Overseas magazines included
Monitoring Times (U.S)
Popular Communications (U.S)
Spectrum Monitor (still going) ** Excellent Magazine
CQ Amateur Radio (U.S) (still going)
CQ VHF Radio
National Communications (U.S) (still going??)
Radio User (U.K) (Inc Short Wave Magazine & Radio Active) (still going) ** Excellent magazine
Practical Wireless (U.K) (still going)
RadCom (U.K) (still going)

So why am i writing this?

Because there is an amazing site called 'AmericanRadioHistory.com' that has catalogued various magazines from 70s, 80s, 90s, 2000, etc,etc.. In Full (pdf format)..

I have downloaded a few and are now reading on my iPad :)

Some of my favs are = Popular Communications Magazine (1982-2003) CLICK HERE
                                     Monitoring Times (1982 - 1999) CLICK HERE
                                     Communications World (1973 - 1981) CLICK HERE

Or, you can check out all of them HERE

Sure there not the latest but an enjoyable read, non the less.

Now, when your bored over the Christmas/New Year holidays, download some magazines and remember the good times :)

 Today, the magazine is, i think.. nearly at its end which is sad, in paper form. On the plus side, you can download magazines cheaper and read them on the go.. IPad, EReader, etc, etc

LINKS

http://www.radiocomms.com.au/magazine

http://www.cq-amateur-radio.com/

http://www.thespectrummonitor.com/

http://www.radioshackcatalogs.com/

http://www.pwpublishing.ltd.uk/practical-wireless-latest-issue/

http://rsgb.org/main/publications-archives/radcom/

http://www.nat-com.org/

http://www.americanradiohistory.com/index.htm

http://www.cbtricks.com/pub/secret_cb/index.htm

****** If anyone has any 'Radio and Communications' magazines' like the ones below they want to get rid of, please contact me at the following email - michael-bailey1708@hotmail.com.
I used to read these magazine religiously but over the years of moving, i lost them...
Many Thanks *******************


REMEMBER WHEN..


#CB Action
#RadioandCommunication
#magazines

Huge 'Thank You' to American Radio History for an incredible site...





  

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

VOYAGER OF THE SEAS

Hello and welcome back... Currently moored at Sydney Harbour is one of the largest ships in the world.. The Voyager of the Seas.


The Voyager of the Seas is operated by Royal Caribbean International (RCI).

In 1999, the Voyager of the Seas cruise ship was the Largest in the world only to be overtaken by her sister 'Explorer of the Seas'

In October 2014, Voyager of the Seas underwent a $80million refurbishment while in dry-dock. Upgrades included an Outdoor Movie Screen, Surf Simulator, various restaurants and Ship Wide WI-FI.

Voyager of the Sea is due to depart 20th Dec to the South Pacific.

INFO
Callsign - C6SE5
Weight - 138,194 GT (Gross Ton)
Length - 1,020Ft
Max Beam - 157.5 ft
Top Speed - 43.9km/h (22knots)
Passengers - Nearly 4000
Crew - 1200
Decks - 15
Pools - 10 (including spa, whirlpools, etc)
Includes - Rock Climbing Wall, Ice Skating Rink, FlowRider Surf Simulator, Mini Golf Course, Japanese Restaurant, Wedding Chapel and Video Arcade (you would find me here)


FREQUENCIES
Casino - 467.800
Ch1 - 467.750 (repeater - 457.525)
Ch2 Bridge - 467.775 (repeater - 457.550)
Ch3 - 467.800 (repeater - 457.575)



LINKS

http://www.royalcaribbean.com/vanity/voyager


VIDEOS





LAYOUT



NOTES - My dad is sailing on this cruise, the only thing he noted was that everything on this boat is in American dollars.
The Australian dollar is not very good at the moment against the American dollar so i hope he has deep pockets...
Other than that, he is looking forward to his holiday :)

*** Please, Don't forget to shout me a coffee (see link top right corner).. Any amount big or small is much appreciated and it keeps this site happening :)***

#VoyagerOf TheSeas
#Voyager of the Seas



Thursday, December 8, 2016

COMPONENT PARTS OF A CIRCUIT DIAGRAM

Hello and welcome back... A vintage look at Component parts used in a Circuit Diagram.

To read... tap on page, then when opened in new window, right click "View Image".. Tap again to zoom and read..


REMEMBER WHEN - EPSON HX-20

Hello and welcome back... Going back to early 80s (81-83) was this beast from Epson.

The HX-20 was basically the first laptop going on sale in 1983.. Came with 16Kbytes of RAM, expandable to 32Kbytes.

How times have changed.

To read... tap on page, then when opened in new window, right click "View Image".. Tap again to zoom and read..

#Epson HX-20

REMEMBER WHEN

Hello and welcome back... Going back to around mid 1990's when things were a bit different.


I had the AOR1000, Similar to the Camnis you see above, same price too.
Bloody good radio :)





Friday, December 2, 2016

NEW TRAIN CENTRE FOR SYDNEY

Hello and welcome back... A new $276 million rail operations center is to be built at Green Square (Alexandria) NSW.

It is set to become a major rail nerve centre connecting Drivers, Maintenance, Emergency, & Management while giving customers up to date information about delays or problems they may experience.

The new centre will be 5 stories high with provision for a Fire Station included.

I reported back a while ago that State Rail comms were to go Digital (SEE HERE) with frequencies in the 1.8ghz range. All around i have seen little flat panel antennas put in place around rail corridors which is part of the new upgrade

The new centre is due to open in 2018

For current Rail Frequencies Click Here (updated 02/12/2016)

LINKS

http://www.transport.nsw.gov.au/newsroom/media-releases/new-nerve-centre-reduce-train-commuter-delays

https://issuu.com/westwick-farrowmedia/docs/critical_comms_jul_aug_2016/29



TRAIN DRIVERS VIEW

Hello and welcome back... Found this interesting.

My dad was a Train Driver, started out as a Fireman on Steam Trains (shoveling coal), then made it to driver for Diesels and eventually Electrics around the City Circle (and suburbs)

He is a nervous wreak..

He smokes a pack a day of cigarettes to try and keep his nerves at bay and has had a failed marriage.

His fatality count was around 8. (he doesn't talk about it) so its what i remember.

He is now retired, but is still scarred by experience.

Next time you travel by train, have a think about the person driving the train, who probably got up at 2am to start their shift, has to put up with near misses, rocks being thrown at the train, people spitting and yelling at them and the nightmares that continue long after their shift finishes..

That was never in the job description...




Friday, November 25, 2016

PROGRAM YOUR SCANNER IN 15 MINS

Hello and welcome back... Had Alot of people say that the new scanners from Uniden are very hard to program.

They would be correct.

I have been using radio scanners since i was 16 (im now 45) and it still took me nearly 4-6 months to nut out how my Uniden 396xt worked.

It used to be the old bank system and you could enter in your frequencies in banks of 20 or 50 and then press scan and bingo, it worked..

But not any more.

The way to describe the new system is sort of like a computer database using main folders, then sub folders inside of the main folder.

I like to make my scanner as easy as possible to scan so that when an emergency or something of interest happens, i'm prepared and not fighting with the radio to get it to work properly.

I have spoken to a gentleman who has had his radio for 4 years and didn't know how to program this beast. (I recently programed it for him)

Which is why i've decided to release my database to others, so that they can get on with listening to their radios and not be frustrated because its not picking anything up.
Seriously, with these radios, you only need one setting out and it wont work properly (as i have found out by experience)

The way i have my Uniden UBCD396XT set out is in 10 banks.

The set-out is as follows =
BANK 1 - Bushfire
            2 - NSW GRN
            3 - Medical / Rescue
            4 - Blank / Marine
            5 - Sydney Airport
            6 - Local Airports
            7 - Military
            8 - Local
            9 - FM Radio stations
            0 - 80ch UHF CB

This table above (banks) represent 30 years of radio listening. The frequencies i have in these banks are a collection of personal listening, hours of searching ACMA databanks and RadioReference website.
Settings are my own trial and error as the instruction manual is pretty bad.

I'm not saying that what i've got is perfect but it seems to work (i have used this database for some customers and feedback is excellent)

An in-depth view of the banks are as follows...

BANK 1 - BUSHFIRE
Covers NSW Rural-Fire Fireground channels (VHF & UHF) and Aircraft Support inc Rural Fire, NPWS & NSW Forestry.
(update) PMR Chs now included
The air channels are a lifeline, they offer so much information.
A birdseye view so to speak.
You can hear the pilots of various helicopters and aircraft discussing the fire behaviour, who's doing what and where breakouts are occurring long before media know about it.
Fireground is sometimes limited to local areas only, but if there's a fire in your neighbourhood, you will want to be listening to these channels.

I like to keep this bank to a minimum so scanning is swift (you don't want to be stuck on some data ch when a fire is headed your way)

BANK 2 - NSW GRN
GRN covers Ambulance, Rural Fire, SES, Fire & Rescue (NSW Fire Brigade), plus several other agencies.
Towers can be modified to your local area.

BANK 3 - MEDICAL / RESCUE
Westpac Rescue, Marine Rescue, Air Ambulance, Hospitals, Fire Brigade back chs (used in car accidents, etc, etc) and lots more.

BANK 4 - BLANK or MARINE/MARITIME
Used for searching / monitoring new frequencies or can load full Marine channels band

BANK 5 - SYDNEY AIRPORT
As the name suggests, Sydney Airport (Kingsford Smith) freq inc Tower, Depart, Approach, Helicopter ch, Aircraft companys (if there is a problem with an aircraft, you will hear about it on their company channels)

BANK 6 - LOCAL AIRPORTS
Sydney local airports inc Bankstown (tower, ground, clubs), Camden (tower, ground, gliders) and other freq of interest.
Can be modified to your local area

BANK 7 - MILITARY
Richmond RAAF freq (Tower, ground etc etc) Holsworthy & Glenbrook aviation freq, Skynet.
Can be modified to your local area... Eg Williamtown

BANK 8 - LOCAL COMMS
STA Buses, Westfields, State Rail, Taxies, etc etc
Can be modified to your local area

BANK 9 - FM RADIO
Just about every Sydney FM Radio station inc WSFM, Smooth 95.3, 2ST Nowra (comes in on a good day).. about 20-30 channels also ATIS airband channels (Sydney, Bankstown, Camden)

BANK 10 - 80Ch UHF CB
Useful if you travel alot (listen to truckies) also used in bushfires when fireground is unavailable.

NOTE = For Airband Enthusiasts banks 5,6,7 can be used with everything else locked out... Very useful.

As stated most frequencies can be tailored to your area, if you don't live in Sydney or surrounds.

NSW & Canberra Only & Windows based only (sorry)

COST = $35 (Email Master File with instructions)
              $50 meet me (if you live / travel around Blue Mountains and i will do it for you..Takes 15mins)

If your interested, please deposit $35 into my 'Shout me a Coffee Fund' In the notes section, please state the its for 'Radio Programming',
Also send an Email with your name and what area your from and any other freqs of interest (eg Maritime, VHF Police) so i can tailor to your area.
Please make sure your name matches the 'Shout me a Coffee' and Email being sent.

Please allow 24/48 hours for the instructions and link to the file to be emailed to you. (i have 4 kids so things get hectic at times) also it gives me time to find frequencies for your area.

I use FREESCAN Software, so the file will be in that format.

PLEASE NOTE = Sadly Sydney Police (and surrounds) are using digital encryption and cannot be scanned but small pockets of analogue are still available in country areas (MT VIC - Blue Moutains is one area) that can still scanned but its very limited but will be added to your file if available.

You will need a data cable that (hopefully) came with your radio.

This is the same file that i use personally (for Uniden UBC396XT) so i know it works... Also if i update any frequencies, i will send you the new file free of charge.

I offer this service as is, meaning i don't claim that its 100% correct, as whats good for me, may not be good for you.. (so far no problems :)

If you have a problem please email me and let me know because it may be something that i have overlooked or hadn't thought about.

The 15min claim is for customers who already have Freescan software up and running and have successfully connected their scanner with this software.

STEPS INVOLVED

1. Clear / reset your radio
2. plug your radio into your computer while the freescan program is running.
3. Freescan can talk / control your radio
4. upload the purchased file into your radio
5. adjust settings to your liking
Enjoy your programmed radio

CHEERS

Michael Bailey

michael-bailey1708@hotmail.com

#Uniden
#UBCD396
#ubcd396xt
#UBCD325P2



UNIDEN BEARCAT BC895XLT (Flashback)

Hello and welcome back... The Uniden Bearcat BC895XLT was a 300ch desktop scanner, which in its time could scan 100ch a second.. That's pretty good, even in today's standard.


This beast was chunky, had 300chs (10 bank) of storage and sported 'Trunktracker' technology. (Motorola Type I, II, IIi Hybrid, Smartnet and Privacy Plus).. analogue only.

Released in 1997, other features include: LCD dimmer, S-indicator, channel lockout, count key, weather alert, autosort and ten priority channels.

The BC-895XLT even has built-in CTCSS decode.

Other claim to fame was the ability to update the scanners firmware (a serial port on the back of the scanner supported this function)

FREQUENCY COVERAGE

  • 29-54 in 5 khz steps
  • 137-174 in 5 khz steps
  • 108-137 in 12.5 khz steps
  • 137-144 in 5 khz steps (NOTE: AM mode reception in this band is not possible due to firmware limitations)
  • 216-225 in 5 khz steps
  • 225-400 in 5 khz steps
  • 400-512 in 12.5 khz steps
  • 806-956 in 12.5 khz steps 

RESET SCANNER
With power off press and hold the MAN, 2, and 9 keys. Turn the radio on and release the keys after a few seconds.


MANUAL - https://www.manualslib.com/manual/334337/Uniden-Bc895xlt.html#manual

MODS - http://www.radioreference.com/digital/dig/bc895-tap.txt



NOTES = Cant really comment, never owned one of these radios. It looks the part, covers the spectrum really well and scan rate is amazing..

Would i buy one? ... Yes

Anyone else have any thoughts about this radio... Good / Bad

Comment below..


#BC895XLT



Wednesday, November 16, 2016

CONCORDE 2 - SYDNEY TO L.A IN 6 HOURS

Hello and welcome back... God bless Richard Branson (owner of Virgin Empire) who has unveiled  an idea to design and create a supersonic aircraft dubbed 'The Concorde 2'

This new aircraft will be able to fly from Sydney to Los Angles in 6 hours at speed of 2335kmph..

I hope i live long enough to see one of these aircraft in the sky or even fly in one..

CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL STORY



WHY DID THE ORIGINAL CONCORDE FAIL?

#Concorde 2

Saturday, November 12, 2016

ECADEX 16

Hello and welcome back... Airband scanners at the ready..

A military exercise off the east coast called ECADEX 16 will start on Monday 14th Nov 2016

Details...

RAAF Base Amberley, QLD and RAAF Base Williamtown, NSW will see an increase in aircraft activity over the period 11 - 23 November 2016 with the start of the East Coast Air Defence Exercise (ECADEX 16)
This is a tactical field training exercise that involves defensive counter air and command and control operations. Our F/A-18F Super Hornets, KC-30A, F/A-18A Hornets, E-7A Wedgetail and AP-3C Orion will all participate in this exercise.
Exercise flying will begin Mon 14 November, concluding Wednesday 23 November.

Thanks to RAAF Website for the info

POLAIR 3

Hello and welcome back... Taken this afternoon while buzzing around Springwood.

Apart from Radios and Music, Photography is a huge hobby of mine. Very impressed with this photo, i don't own an expensive camera (Nikon L310), so i get excited when my photos turn out sharp and reasonable size.


Thursday, November 10, 2016

AIRPORT CHAOS AFTER HOAX CALL

Hello and welcome back... Sometimes, I can't believe the stupidity of people.

Someone has decided that it would be funny to start transmitting on aircraft radio and issuing directions to airplanes saying they were from control towers, they even made a hoax mayday call to Avalon and Melbourne (Tullamarine) airports.

This happened 15 times...

Unauthorized transmissions on non-public radio channels is an offence, and the person responsible could face up to 20 years in prison.

Apart from the obvious danger to passengers and crew, this is the sort of behavior is what will make authority's say 'How can we stop this thing from happening again'
The result will be, that changes will be made and the hobby of Aviation listening will be a thing of the past.. all thanks to some dickhead.

This sort of shit pisses me off...I love Aviation monitoring, its about the only thing that hasn't changed much in 30 years which means you can still get a cheap receiver (or an old scanner), as long as it covers the aviation bands and be sure to hear something within a few mins.

If anyone knows who is doing this, please contact Crime Stoppers 1800 333 000
before its too late.

Oh yeah, and if you know them personally, give them a good smack in the head and tell them to wake up to themselves, courtesy of the aviation loving community. 

LINKS

http://www.news.com.au/travel/travel-updates/incidents/afp-investigating-15-unauthorised-radio-transmissions/news-story/f2792505af8e83bce39b1dd904c5e55b

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-11-07/afp-investigating-hoax-calls-made-to-passenger-plane/7995502


Wednesday, November 2, 2016

COCKPIT TALES - KLM AIRLINES

Hello and welcome back... Found this interesting, very informative if you love aviation. Everything you wanted to know about flying commercial airlines and how things work





















LINKS

http://www.klm.com/

https://www.facebook.com/klm

https://twitter.com/klm

Thanks to KLM Airlines for the videos

*** Please, Don't forget to shout me a coffee (see link top right corner).. Any amount big or small is much appreciated and it keeps this site happening :)***

#KLM
#NSWRadio&Communications



Friday, October 28, 2016

BUILD YOUR OWN FLOWER POT ANTENNA

Hello and welcome back... I'm going to try this, looks really good.

Build your own 6db gain Flower Pot Antenna from coax that you probably have laying around your house.

Its called a Flower Pot Antenna because, the original antenna was cleverly disguised in a flower pot.

The clever inventor of this antenna is a NSW amateur radio operator  (VK2ZOI) and the instructions to build this antenna are on his website. (see links below)


View the instructions on how to build this antenna here

LINKS (other)

http://vk2zoi.com/articles/dual-band-high-gain-flower-pot/

http://vk2zoi.com/

http://vk2zoi.com/articles/half-wave-flower-pot/

http://vk2zoi.com/articles/dual-band-half-wave-flower-pot/

http://vk2zoi.com/articles/single-five-eighth-flower-pot/

http://vk2zoi.com/articles/double-five-eighth-flower-pot/

Thanks to VK2ZOI for the information.


*** Please, Don't forget to shout me a coffee (see link top right corner).. Any amount big or small is much appreciated and it keeps this site happening :)***



U.S - EMERGENCY AGENCIES TURNING OFF ENCRYPTION

Hello and welcome back... Interesting piece of news from the UK.

Emergency Agencies begin turning off radio encryption in a bid to 'Improve transparency' in the U.S.

I wonder if it will happen here... Not bloody likely.

Read the full story here


*** Please, Don't forget to shout me a coffee (see link top right corner).. Any amount big or small is much appreciated and it keeps this site happening :)***

Friday, October 21, 2016

NEW HELICOPTERS FOR CH7 & 9

TV News Ch7 and 9 have entered a contract with Camden (NSW) based United Aero Helicopters.

Both 7 and 9 have done away with their helicopters, with both helicopters being repainted white with a dark blue tail and no network branding.

Read the full story HERE
 

READY FOR TAKEOFF - SEASON 2

Just a quick post - The series 'Ready for Takeoff' is back on the air with Season 2 on the 9 Network - Friday 7.30pm.

Ready for Takeoff is the behind the scene's of Australia's biggest airline.. Qantas

The good, The bad and the downright Ugly... Its interesting viewing..

I think Episode 3 is on tonight... Ep 1 & 2 is on the CH9 app

QANTAS RETRO ROO 2 - SPOTTED

Hello and welcome back... Spotted at Sydney Airport.

The Retro Roo 2 from Qantas. Would love the travel on this, like going back in time.




#RetroRoo
#Retro Roo
#NSW Radio & Communications

Friday, October 14, 2016

ANTENNA'S

Hello and welcome back... Antenna's or Aerials (American?) are the lifeblood of our radios. Without them they would not work properly.

So many Antenna's are on the market these days, its hard to decide which one is right for you.

While i'm not an expert, i have been using radios since i was 16 (now 46) and have used a fair few antenna's, some good, some not so good, and some are just crap.


*****SHORTWAVE*****

 Shortwave is low band starting about 0.5Mhz to 30Mhz.

The Longwire antenna is a popular choice.

Its basically, attach a rope or string to a tree, end with an egg insulator and attach a very long piece of copper wire to the other end, the longer the better and up high, the higher the better. Tie the end to an egg insulator and attach to a tree. (see below)

Other HF/Shortwave antennas to use would be Whips similar to what the Army use.

For indoor use, the old twin antenna wire (or ribbon wire) worked well, just make sure your radio is away from TV, Microwave ovens, florescent lights, etc,etc.
Tac the ribbon cable across one end of the room, across the roof line is best and all the way around if you can, then solder the ends together and attach coax to the solder and coax to radio.

   
I am currently using a Mobile One SCATX antenna on a rooftop pole. The antenna is rated to 30Mhz but for Shortwave, It just booms in..I'm very impressed.
Been able to get stations in the U.S, Japan, China and even Russia using the Icom IC-R1000 radio.
 

*****SCANNER*****

The worlds your oyster, or so the saying goes.

The Discone Antenna is the most popular.
With unity gain, its a trusty performer but at times not cheap.
Also there's the problem that if your discone is on a mast outside, everyone knows you own a scanner. (pic below)

Whip antenna's are also a good choice, ether stainless steel or fiberglass.

The Mobile One SCATX antenna is my current choice, it has gain on UHF (4.5db), Airband (2.1db) and VHF Low (Unity). Like i stated in the Shortwave post, it picks up pretty good as well.

TV Antenna's can also be used in fringe areas.

The 50 - 75ohm difference will not cause a problem. (Scanners are 50ohm while TV is 75ohm). TV Antenna's are rated to 30Mhz to 800Mhz, good enough for scanner use.

Keep in mind that TV Antenna's are very directional.

The only thing to be careful of, is if the TV antenna has a pre-amp attached, it can cause signal overload that can damage your scanner.

I was living in an area (Faulconbridge) and it was down in the sticks. I went to the top of the property, mounted a scanner antenna in a tree, ran super thick coax down to the house to minimize loss but it was still a crap signal.
In desperation i plugged my scanner into the TV Antenna socket and 'Boom', everything came in clear, problem solved.

Other Scanner base antennas I have tried is the Mobile One SCBASE antenna.

I was not impressed. Thankfully, i did not pay for this 'bit of tube and wire'.

Asking price at the time was $160 and was sold at Dick Smiths.

The SCBASE antenna is a white plumbers tube attached to a smaller aluminum tube for mast mounting. Inside this antenna was coax to the center where very thin wire was wound up and down inside a smaller tube.

I wonder if the makers actually tested this antenna before putting it on the market.

My mind was taken back to when i spoke to Peter Pride (Owner of Mobile One) and he stated that they had to import these antennas because Dick Smith wanted them to. (don't quote me on that, its going by memory and was about 10 years ago but its similar to what i remember)

He told me to save my money and buy the antenna i have now, an antenna he designed and made..The SCATX.
An antenna that has outperformed my expectations.

Handheld antennas for scanners can have a BNC or SMA connectors.

Diamond Antennas make some good antennas.

I was using a amateur band antenna where 144Mhz and 400Mhz had between 2.4 to 4.5db gain.
Sadly this antenna bent really easy and lasted about 6 months.

Mobile one has BNCSCAN or SMASCAN antenna.
This is my current antenna i use on my scanner, its longer than the stock antenna and performs pretty well. Sells for $40/45

The best antennas for handhelds, i have found, are the ones similar to the previous Diamond antenna.

Amateur band antennas that have gain for 144Mhz (also good for Airband) and gain in UHF band.

In fact, i think the handheld market is the hardest of all, some antennas of the Chinese variety claim to have gain but the proof is in the pudding.
Most times they struggle to give good reception and are cheaply made.
  

*****UHF*****

Brand 'RFI' have some of the best UHF antennas around.
I am currently using the stainless steel whip with a elevated feed for GRN reception.
Even in strong wind, it performs very well and has around 6.5db gain. (see below)


Benelec Antennas are other i would recommend.
One Benelec base antenna which is a 477Mhz  is rated at 9db gain, that's pretty good. See Here, as does Mobile One (COL9) see here
Other brands include GME, ZCG, Uniden, Minespec and Aerpro.

Beam antennas are very effective for home UHF setups, they're directional, offer decent gain and are durable to weather conditions.

Handheld antennas often include the 'stubbie' quarter wave (seen on most 2-ways),most are unity gain with longer antennas offering db gain.

Antennas are available from Icom, Mobile One, GME, Vertex, Motorola and various 'Chinese' brands.
A small selection here


*****AIRBAND*****

Base antennas for Airband are hard to get, not many suppliers sell Airband antennas.  (that i know of)

Mobile One sell both Base and whip variety see here

I sort of made my my own Airband Antenna
Ive currently got a elevated feed from 27Mhz (2.1db gain) and a long VHF stainless steel whip (made for 76Mhz?).
Picks up really well, so good in fact, it beats my Mobile One antenna on the roof which has 2db gain.

From Springwood, I can recieve Sydney ATIS (5bar/full), Richmond (4bar), Camden (2-3bar) and Bankstown (1bar) (bar = signal strength)
With the Mobile One roof antenna, I only get about half of what I receive on the above whip setup. (Airband only).

Another good base Airband antenna is the Diamond D-103, Its has 2.15dBi (120MHz), 5.5dBi (300MHz) See Here

Handheld antennas are sold by Mobile One as well.

You can also get replacement Airband antennas from Icom and other makers of Airband radios, just be sure check that the connection is the right one for your radio, eg BNC or SMA


*****AMATEUR RADIO*****

The most popular base Ham/Amateur radio antennas would have to be the huge beam antennas.

Depending on which band your interested in, some require a high mast, guy wires and council permission before you can start transmitting (license required) check em out here

Also Dipole or Wire Antenna's are popular with Ham radio.

Makers of Antenna's to check out for Ham/Amateur radio include Cushcraft, Diamond, Hy-Gain, T.G.M, & Ultrabeam, 

Amateur Radio handheld antennas are also excellent for scanners because most have gain in the 144 / 400Mhz range.

Once again Mobile One (see here) sell a good range of Ham Antenna's as does Chinese brands that have flooded the market.
Brands like Baofeng, Wouxen,Quansheng, Puxing have replacement antennas available. Some good, some not so good.

One of the best I have found is a brand called Sainsonic, cute little antenna, kinda looks like a toy but picks up really well. (better than the stock antenna) and has 2.1 db gain. (see below)


Please add anything i may have missed in the comments below.
I started writing this 4 hours ago and my brain is now mush. hahaha

Do you have a favorite Antenna you wish to share with readers? Comment below.

Also if you have a company that sells radio antenna's, feel free to advertise below in the comments section. (no spamming)     
  
Don't forget to shout me a coffee (see link top right corner).. Any amount big or small is much appreciated and it keeps this site happening :)

LINKS

http://mobileone.com.au/1a_index.html

http://www.prestigecom.net.au/

http://actioncommunications.net.au/

http://www.andrewscom.com.au/Antennas

http://www.strictlyham.com.au/

https://baofengtech.com/


#Antenna
#Shortwave
#scanner
#UHF
#VHF
#Amateur
#Airband

#Disclaimer - This post is not an advertisement for Mobile One antennas or any other company. Its the products that i have used and they work well (and i'm very picky.)
If i find products that work well, i'm more than happy to tell the world, if its rubbish.. well, i will try to let you down gently in a hope you will fix the problem.
Thanks.



Thursday, October 13, 2016

WARBIRDS FLYPAST

Hello and welcome back... While on holiday with the family (first in 6 years) on the Gold Coast, these stunning war birds did several flybys.

I love the Gold Coast, would gladly move there in a heartbeat.. There is always something happening, excellent for the photographer in me and i love the hot weather :)

WARBIRDS FLYPAST



#warbirds
#RAAF
#GoldCoast



BUILD YOUR OWN 2 METER ANTENNA 144-148Mhz

Hello and welcome back... I'm currently in the process of making or constructing my own Airband radio antenna (receive only).

Once I work out how to do this, i will post here..

This video from radio user 'Margaret' (callsign VK4MH) and shows you how to build your own Antenna. It can be changed to be of any frequency you like as Margaret explains in her video.

MAKE YOUR OWN 2 METER ANTENNA


Many thanks to vk4jgh for the video.

#2 Meter Antenna



Thursday, September 22, 2016

TOUR THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION

Hello and welcome back... I did a page a while back on the International Space Station SEE HERE

This video goes into more detail, and is a bit clearer...

I love videos like this.. :)


SPACE LAWS - WHO POLICE'S SPACE

Hello and welcome back... Interesting Topic

Who Police's Space?... Is it Star Lord, Darth Vader or Princess Vesper?


HOW MARINE LAW WORKS

Hello and welcome back... Found this interesting...


Friday, September 16, 2016

GRN APCO BANDPLAN

Hello and welcome back... Found out about this by mistake...

I decided to reprogram my Uniden UBCD396XT Radio Scanner and make things a little more organized.

Upon programing GRN (Digital P25) into the radio i found that i was receiving towers from Kurrajong, & Gov Phillip Tower but not Glenbrook or Razorback (Picton).

Living in Springwood, NSW, my main tower is Glenbrook and wondering is the tower was not transmitting, i programmed in the control channel into another analogue radio and confirmed that it was, in fact.. still working.

Next step was to check settings and i noted that the two working channels had found its bandplan but the the two that was dead had no bandplan in place.

The bandplan is used to set parameters into the radio along with step frequencies as well.

You will find the bandplan in your Freescan setup. Once you load your setup, head the your GRN setup and click on the Base (or Tower), in my case its Glenbrook as a start.

There are 3 tables in front of you... Site Setup, Trunk Frequencies and APCO Band Plan. The APCO bandplan is what you want.

All your towers should have a Bandplan like the pic below.


If you try to enter the frequencies manually, the software will tell you that the 762mhz frequencies are out of band, just click OK. 

FREQUENCY(Mhz)     SPACING (Khz)
851.00625                       6.25
762.00625                       6.25
851.0125                         12.5
762.00625                       12.5
412.47500                       6.25
420.00000                       6.25

After setting the bandplan, I then plugged my radio into an outdoor antenna and Bingo..Glenbrook was now working (also did the same to Razorback and it too started to work)

So, if you are programming your radio and wondering why its not picking anything up... Check the bandplan.
Normally, it programs the bandplan automatically (as it did for Gov Phillip Tower & Kurrajong) but failed to do Glenbrook & Razoback.

Hope this Helps



NOTE = I have updated the 'How to setup GRN page  :)

THE PLANE HIGHWAY IN THE SKY

Hello and welcome back... Ever wondered, how, with all the aircraft flying around our sky's, that they don't just.. crash into each other?

This excellent video by 'Wendover Productions' explains...

Very Interesting...


Friday, September 9, 2016

PICS FOUND ON THE NET

Hello and welcome back... Just some pics i found on the net from various places like Facebook etc, etc, Some have become my wallpaper for my computer :)













































































Many Thanks to the owners of these photos...