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6m Rigs

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I've been thinking about getting into 6m DX work, but I don't have any idea what kind of rig to get. I don't have a whole lotta money for this and since I only have a Tech ticket, an all-the-bells-n-whistles-HF+6 is out the window. I've concidered one of the Ranger 6m all modes, but I haven't really heard good things about them and the $300 price tag is a little high, and I can't seem to find a used one.

 

Any suggestions on a decent, not too expensive rig I can get my feet wet with?

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Alinco makes a pretty decent 6m FM rig from what I understand but I know you would want a SSB rig to do DX. You might check into the the MFJ 9906 (I think that is the number). It's a small little SSB/CW 6M rig. I've read some fairly decent reviews on it. Match it up to a good amp and you've got quite the rig.

 

Max...

K0AZV

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I use the RCI-5054dx. It works great ! I have talked to NY,MD,NJ,LA,Fla<TX,MO, a some others. I bought it on QTH from an elderly Ham. He never used it and was still new in the box. I went to a Hamfest and bought a mount and 2 Hamsticks for 6 meter and made a Hamstick dipole and placed it on a tripod and rotor in my attic. The total cost of the antennas and mount was $15 and I bought the radio for around $200.

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I worked about 100 grids in North America and probably 40 states and 3 countries with a RCI 5054dx on a simple PAR Loop antenna. A fine rig indeed but lacks quite a few things like a $600 or so radio like a Yaesu FT-857 or an Icom 706.. such as the filters, DSP, speech processor, etc.. It is amazing what a difference a DSP (digital processor) makes when trying to work weak signals and Aurora DX. I own a Yaesu FT-857 and the newer "D" models are selling used under $600 and resonably new also. A great rig with all bands, all modes, and 100 watts out on 6M! , compared to 35 watts on the 5054dx.. :lol:

 

Check out some info on 6 Meters at my site:

Mike K9DRX

http://www.qsl.net/k9drx

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I have an FT-897 but don't have a good 6m antenna up. Maybe I should do something about that.

 

--Marky, K6FTF

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Any suggestions on a decent, not too expensive rig I can get my feet wet with?

 

I use my existing ICOM-718 HF rig and a TenTec 1208 6M transverter. You can find the TenTec 1208 for around $100 used. Power output is around 10W.

 

The TenTec 1208 uses the 20M band as the I/F. All TX/RX switching is done automatically by the 1208. Homebrew yourself a 3 element yagi and your ready for some DX'ing.

 

73

N6VMO

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You might want to see what you can get an ICOM 706 for. I believe the original models are in the $300 to 400 range. The 706 MKII and MKIIG models have better receivers and I believe DSP. Without Internal DSP, you will probably want an external DSP unit. You will want SSB and/or CW filters on the 706. I have had the original 706 since 1996 and it is works OK, but you need a filter and external DSP.

 

I have had a Yaesu 920 since 1998 and it has an excellent 6M tranceiver along with HF. I think used they are in the $500-600 used. If you can budget one of these, I would recommend it as a good value.

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If you can find an old Icom 551D for a decent price, it is a great 6 meter all mode rig. I am very active on 6 meters and prefer this rig for six meter work over my 706 Mk IIg and over my Kenwood Ts-140 s with the six meter mod. The keys to six meter success are: a) patience B)a great antenna c) patience. Good luck and hope to talk with you on six one of these days.

 

Hank/N3ORX

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Thanks guys.

 

I found (what I think is) a pretty good deal on a Yaesu FT-690RII, so I'm getting that. Now I just need to figure out a good antenna.

 

Hope to hear you guys on 6 soon.

 

Mike - W7MVG

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Well if you feel like builing one I suggest that you try this Sloop antenna I just built one for a buddy of mine and it works great for omni directional. I did need to cut it down a bit from what they call for on the instructions. If your interested I can give you the dimentions I cam up with. I am going to build one formyself now for listening so I don't have to be swinging the beam around all the time.

 

I use a A503S by Cushcraft. It is not that large as beams go and it really gets out there.

 

Good luck and hope to catch you on a band openiong some time.

 

73, Dave KCØUYK.

 

Another thing don't forget to stop into the Geocaching net sometime Thur 7:30 MST on reflector 9000

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Lots of nice rigs there. I have to say I am pleased with my 5054-dx. I have talked as far west as Texas and an Island south of Fl. And a whole bunch in between on 25 watts and a Hamstick dipole in the attic. It makes my day to hear the responses when I tell them my setup and how good they say I am coming in. Living on a hill helps. I have been receiving QSL cards and that is neat ! By the way I took my Gen. written test and passed on June 10th ! :P Only missed 1 question. I now am studying code and can't wait to get on HF with my Yaesu FT-757GX ! Hope to talk to you all ! :ph34r:

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I hope y'all got a chance to participate in Field Day this weekend. Six meters was HOT! There was a major band opening Saturday afternoon, then again Saturday evening....I ran a pile-up for about an hour until I had to take a break and give up the frequency. It was open very late, almost until 10:30 pm. local time. Then this morning it was open again for about two hours and I ran a pile up again. This was one of the best Field Days for six meters in about 8 years. I used my new ICOM 7000 and the NR helped tremendously, as did the DVR capability.

 

Hank/N3ORX (we operated under the club call, K4ORE, in case any of you contacted us)

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Hmm 6 meters

when I was first on the band I had an Old Crystal set. A GE prog-line 100w fm set on 52.525

and I had a Blast worked from New Brunswick Canada FN65 worked Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvaina, Ontario all with a 100w and a home made J-pole

 

So if U are looking for a Desent Rig.

U could try a FM set and sit on 52.525 when it open it's open

or look on ebay and see if U can find a good all mode.

I had a Ft-100d for a while and was using the ATAS-100 antenna on a 18 wheeler for a while and had a blast with that on 6m ssb.

 

It a band worth Looking into but I know from up here 11 months of the years it nothing but static.

but when it opens it opens

 

ttyl Malcolm VE9FC

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Another thing don't forget to stop into the Geocaching net sometime Thur 7:30 MST on reflector 9000

 

I'd check in, but I'm not saavy enough to figure out the whole IRLP thing and I can't get echolink to work with my home internet connection. Oh well. :)

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I have a Yaesu FT-8900R in the Jeep (my wife also has one and we have another at home) and have done some interesting contacts on 6-M FM while on the road. I had almost forgotten how much fun that band can be.

 

You might want to look at the FT-857D.... not a bad price and decent features.... or the FT-817ND - I got one last year and was bitten again by the QRP CW bug.

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I've been thinking about getting into 6m DX work, but I don't have any idea what kind of rig to get. I don't have a whole lotta money for this and since I only have a Tech ticket, an all-the-bells-n-whistles-HF+6 is out the window. I've concidered one of the Ranger 6m all modes, but I haven't really heard good things about them and the $300 price tag is a little high, and I can't seem to find a used one.

 

Any suggestions on a decent, not too expensive rig I can get my feet wet with?

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Alinco DR M06 is decent little FM rig for not a whole lot of money & with a 6m ringo I've worked both coasts on 52.525. Try AES at Milwaukee,WI R&L at Hamilton, Ohio or The Ham Station at Evansville, IN. Note: I'm not an employee of any of these stores but I've spent a bunch of mony with them. 73 de W9FMN...K.

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The keys to six meter success are: a) patience B)a great antenna c) patience. Good luck and hope to talk with you on six one of these days.

 

Hank/N3ORX

 

But wait! Back around 1999, I was using a YEasu 5 watt portable, I think it was a 690, on SSB using only the silly whip antenna. I worked a lady (why are all lady hams on 6? :o ) in Colorado while sitting on a park picnic table in Litchfield, Michigan!

 

A good antenna is always a good idea - but there IS A REASON that 6 is called the "Magic Band".

 

Mark

WR8Y

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I found a pretty cheap (for me) way to get on 6m. I have access to a steerable remote base. :laughing: Two linked repeaters share access to the remote base, one 2m, one 70 cm, and the Kenwood TS-2000 that is up there covers from almost DC to daylight. When looking around on 2m or 70 cm, the corresponding repeater on that band is shut off so one can play around without interference. Can play all the way up to 1.2 GHz.

 

OK, OK... I can hear it now. That solution costs SOMEONE a whole bunch of $$. :blink: I bought a 6m SSB/CW radio about 3 years ago for $35 and I haven't even used it yet! It's a Yaesu FT-620B and is supposed to put out about 15 Watts. I'll get around to building something cheap that resonates on 6m and play with it one of these days... The price was certainly right for the radio, anyway. It was almost a gift.

 

73,

Ken N6MHG

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If you haven't already bought a rig, I would ask you why you rule out an HF rig +6M? Are you NEVER going to upgrade? With the new rules, the most you'd have to do on code for the test is 5 WPM (painfully slow after even a couple hours practice!).

 

As a reward for passing my Calculus class, my wife "let" me buy a Yaesu FT-857. At the time it was $599. It has HF +6M (100W), 2M (50W) and 70 cm (420-450 MHz) at 20W. I use this rig to drive homebrew transverters for 222 and 902 MHz. It really is a great little rig for the price...and LITTLE!

 

I use it at home and mobile and portable. Zero problems with it and I've had it for almost 3 years now I think it is...

 

And you can check out my ham radio page at http://corbenflyer.tripod.com and click on the "My Ham Radio Page" link...

 

Scott

N0EDV

Edited by jracepilot

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