[AMRadio] A 15 Meter Operating Thought

Mike Duke, K5XU k5xu at jam.rr.com
Sun Dec 11 23:27:28 EST 2005

Here are a few thoughts for consideration by those of us who are seriously 
interested in 15 meter AM.

If we all cluster on one frequency as the band gets better, waiting 
patiently for the qso in progress to complete, we will soon find ourselves 
hemmed in on both sides by the SSB signals.

It seems to me that we have a great opportunity to establish a bit of 
dominance while the overall phone activity is low.

If we could get enough regular qsos established on at least 21.425, 435, and 
445, we could claim some room to move about more easily as the band becomes 

Ideally, we should also go for 21.430, and 21.440, thus claiming at least 
the upper 25 khz for AM.

If it really gets busy, we could also go down from 425. I think there are at 
least 2 long-established nets which operate near 21.4 and 21.414 at certain 
times of the day. I also remember that near the end of the last round of 
good conditions, there was one SSB group on 21.430 which generally had a 
real attitude toward everyone else, regardless of the mode of the other 
operators. I don't know if they are still there, but, I'm willing to bet 
they will be back when the band gets easy again.

While I don't really want to do battle with legitimate nets, I think we have 
a real opportunity to flex some muscle almost anywhere we want above 21.400, 
perhaps even lower if enough people begin operating on 15 meters.

When I became an SWL in 1966, 15 was almost as AM friendly as 10 meters. I 
remember listening to many a rock-crushing 15 meter signal which came from a 
Ranger, an Elmac, even a Globe Scout or DX35, 40, or 60.

With consistent 10 meter conditions still at least 2 years away, perhaps 
longer, 15 meters is the best bet, especially for those of us who either 
choose, or must run RiceBox power levels on AM.

I'll check the band as often as possible after work during the week, and 
make as much AM noise as I can on the week end.

A top end filled with AM qsos would be a wonderful Christmas present for all 
of us, and a great way to spend 2006.

Mike Duke, K5XU

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