*10 Meter FNV*
01 October 2010
This article was written in response to a question about 10 meters on the Communications board. It might be advisable to note the date as September 5th, 2010. That puts us at the start of sunspot cycle #24 and the final effects of cycle #23, as it has not yet completely ended. Propagation will definitely change in the up coming months so some of the information in this article definitely is time sensitive.
Communications Board Post
You are right with the sunspot cycle is at a low point there is not much activity or openings on ten meters but there are some. I have been watching the band closely for a couple of months. It is checked every time I turn on the radio (which is almost daily) and have managed to make a couple of dozen contacts over the last six weeks. Living in southern Ontario I find my propagation is mostly North to South and I have worked into: GA, TN, SC, OK, OH, MO, AK, NC, and FL. Frequently I hear stations from the Caribbean and South America namely Chile and Venezuela.
Just for the record my equipment is a ground mounted trapped vertical antenna with about 150 feet of coax to the transmitter running 100 watts.
Generally the ground wave on ten meters could go to around 25 miles if both stations had decent antennas. I could not contact a local with my antenna setup that lives about thirty miles away. Terrain plays a big part and anything further would be Sporadic E, Tropo, or EME etc. My contacts all seem to be to the south in the 2000 to 3000 mile hop range with S9 signal reports.
The ten meter band from my experience is somewhat different from the rest. It is either open to DX stations or it is dead. Weak or stations just above the noise level do not seem to exist in great numbers. If you hear a station it probably is a good signal and you can most likely work him. It is more of a two way street then other bands if that makes any sense.
Most of the SSB operation on ten meters is between 28.300 and 28.500 MHz. with unofficial calling frequencies of 29.390 and 28.400 MHz. Look for openings during the high point of the day and at the shadow line. (Sunrise & sunset)
There are a bunch of beacon stations running very low wattage, which can indicate band openings to a specific area. They can be found from 28.200 to 28.300 MHz. There are detailed listings and information about the beacons on the web. Google is your friend. The 10 –10 group has a listing as well and it can be found at:WJ5O
The group called 10 –10 (TenTen) International is a bunch of Hams that are primarily interested in the 10 meter band. The 10 –10 group run contests, nets, and give out awards for countries, states, zones worked etc. You might check out as the are a good source of information. Their web site may be found at: 10-10 Group
Also here is a web site that lists recent contacts on 10 meters and the VHF & UHF bands giving calls, frequencies, times, and path. The path is shown on an overlay map of North America, or Europe if that is where you live. It is an interesting site with timely information. I use frequently and it may be found at the following link.DX INFO
There is a saying that on ten meters you can work the world on a wet noodle. I work all bands but have a soft spot in my heart for 10 meters. Ten meters is a worldwide band and as it picks up there will be exciting times ahead.
Hope this helps and I will be listening for you.
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