[hfsig] HF performance under 200 miles?

Mitch Winkle mitchwinkle at gmail.com
Mon Oct 10 11:36:46 EDT 2016

That's not always valid reasoning when it comes to HF actually, and here's

Just because the "nearest" HF gate is 200 - 300 miles away doesn't mean
that's the best one to use all the time.  NVIS communications make sense if
you are networking around that model (such as MARS does in regional
comms).  If you are involving alternate connectivity such as internet, RF
distance is rather inconsequential.

Case in point:  Using WINMOR for Winlink connectivity for the recent
Virginia ARES SET, it was necessary for me to use a station in North Miami,
FL, over 1000 miles away in order to gain access to the network reliably on
HF.  Now the same could be said for HF APRS as well.  Why worry about the
distance at all?  Designate a frequency on each band and be happy.
Scanning is commonplace for many types of networking tools such as packet,
ALE and Winlink systems.

To try to provide a direct answer to your question though, an overall high
availability data only band like 30m (which is already the target for many
using APRS) makes a lot of sense.  It's long-regional flavor spans not only
NVIS on it's edge days of propagation, but good sky wave as well, and solid
overnight performance for many hundreds of miles.  It is common to have
trans-Atlantic QSO's in the dark also.

"What frequency should I use on HF?" is one of the most asked questions in
all of Amateur Radio.  The answer is almost always the same.  "The one that
works today."

Mitch Winkle
...How long will you go limping between two different opinions? If the LORD
is God, follow him...
1 Kings 18 ESV

On Mon, Oct 10, 2016 at 9:44 AM, Robert Bruninga <bruninga at usna.edu> wrote:

> For under say 200 miles, what is the best band round the clock?
> Given that a 1 Watt WSPR transmitter performs as if it was 1000W due to
> processing gain, couldn't it punch through the day time noise?
> And APRS only has to go say 200 miles to the nearest HFgate to provide
> almost total coverage of the USA because every where is within 200 miles of
> a city where maybe a ham will be running an HF gate?
> So that is the question.  Forget the high noise levels... WSPR can work
> through that.  what band will provide the connectivity 24/7/364 over that
> 200 to 300 mile range?
> Bob
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