Welcome to Tropical band

To most people the phrase "tropical bands" bring a pretty clear picture to mind - a bunch of shirtless guys playing calypso music. But to experienced shortwave DXers those two little words express the most challenging and enjoyable part of the radio hobby. The phrase kindles memories of a DXer's best catches and favorite QSLs, of exotic stations, music and of early morning listening sessions. (Don Moore)
I like the "Tropical band" name for new 60m allocation. (OK1RP)

Effective from 1st Jan 2017 please paper QSL via OM-bureau only.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Good bye 60m...

Hi all. I would like to thanks to all of You for QSO, trials, support, effort, help, tips, hints... simply for great camaraderie which I felt on 60m band each second when I was on the air.

I am going to the SWL mode but I will try to continue improving my setup, study the condx, ionosphere behavior, phenomenons and help to each others using my experiences I got from my 60m band operation up to now.

Final score of my operation is in the end of the blog. Not bad but plenty of room for an improvement and lot of challenges in front of us is over there.

My best wishes healthy and happy New Year 2012 to all on the bands worldwide and be sure I am listening behind...

73 - Petr, OK1RP

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

ZF - DXCC #26 on 60m

Hello all,

my last QSO giving me the DXCC #26 on 60m was really not as easy as it seemed to be...

I already mentioned that not so mni hams watching down around 5260kHz channel so in that case I had to arrange sked. Eden, ZF1EJ was so nice and helpful to arrange sked on 60m last nite. As I checked the condx the band was opened very well last nite and I heard ZF stations on near 40m band with good signals so I did not expected so big troubles on 60m.

In standard case when the channel 5 is empty my noise level on the band using the Mini Diamond receiving loop around the 00:00Z is enough low and band generally so quiet that station from this distance I should hear and copy.

Unfortunately last nite exactly around 00:00Z the channel 5 was occupied. Mladen 9A4ZZ worked several stations around EU and Paul, G0HNW and Clem, G0APM worked several US stations...all together on the same channel. Its not the big problem as all ops are quite experienced and they are able to rotate on the frequency and allowing to each others to work the stations if they hear them.

The main problem was with the other US guys who did not copy EU stations and began the rag chewing with other local US station on the channel. The reception issue was also on the EU side so there were in parallel several QSOs on the channel 5. Into this chaos Eden, ZF1EJ called me as arranged at the 00:00Z.

I had not any problem to copy his signal when the channel was clean and nobody talked on the frequency. The signals came up to 55 but when the EU and US stations masked him I had the big problem.

I had to play with my K3 a lot to find as best as possible setting to be able to read Eden a bit. After few trials we got the right time to exchange the reports under them and we finished the QSO. Luckily my TX frequency on 5260 where I used CW was quiet on the Cayman Isl. so Eden read my signals even the strength was not so high. We exchanged 55/529 during this QSO and I reached my #26 on 60m band.

Interesting think is that in the beginning of the QSO I used my receiving loop as better choice but in the end the Inverted V folded into "Z" letter with 10m apex was definitely better I realized.

Also the NB setting I had to change to: dSP t3-2 and IF NAR3 (from NAR1 in the beginning) . The AVC had to be OFF for all the time as the noise level increased by 2S units when I tried to activate it. For the first time I also tried to check how it will help the MiniWhip stick which I tested some time ago on Topband. It produced as same N/S as the TX antenna just ZF1EJ signals were weaker so I did not gain from it this time.

Conclusion? I would like to ask all the friends on the 60m band to try listen as careful as possible with the best receiving antennas to avoid parallel operation or QRM on the frequency. Its also the challenge for me and my setup to improve it a lot.

Mni thanks to Eden, ZF1EJ for his effort and nice QSO.

73 - Petr, OK1RP

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

60m band in Z3 - update

Hi Petr...

Tnx for nice wishes. I wish the same to you and your family.

About the 60m band, I have to say that nothing changed from our last conversation so the qso will be invain. After new year holidays I will ask to see is there any chance for experimental licence (for example 1 week or more).

HNY 2012

73' Ven, Z39Z

This is an update I got from my friend Ven, Z39Z about the 60m band operation. In fact the situation is as same as in the countries around so we will have to wait until the communication authority and primary user will start to think about the sharing the band with amateur radio service on secondary non interference basis at least.

I wish good luck to hams in Z3 and Happy New Year 2012!

73 - Petr, OK1RP

Monday, December 26, 2011

HI - DXCC #25 on 60m

Hi all,

I would like to send my big thanks to Mike, HI8HH for his excellent effort and help allowed us to make nice CW QSO on 60m band last nite! Somebody know him as Mr. Caribbean 160m back in the 1970's maybe...

The 5371.5kHz were really noisy last nite and I was not confident that we can make QSO. After 15mins of trials I heard his clean signal coming out from the noise and I copied my callsign. Unfortunately I can not transmit over here so I tried to reply to him on 5260 CW as always. Mike tried to listen for me but after few second I lost him on 5371.5kHz so QSO was not completed. After another 10mins Mike found the way and we managed the QSO using the 5260kHz where I called him on CW. The signal on both sides was S5 and I have to say the signal came from HI8 was really nice and clean for few mins.

The K3 setup: AGC OFF, NB ON (dsp t3-1 / IF NAR2) + int. preamp ON and the noise masking by manual Notch at 920Hz.

The most important during the QSO was to beaming my antenna to right direction. Interesting is that it was not in harmony with expected angle (FK58ak grid) but aprox. 20deg down from this direction. When I beamed up then the signal came down under the noise/QRM. Unexpected signal path during the full moon phase nite? I will be happy for any comments regarding the signal path vs propagation on 60m band.

My #25 DXCC is done with Mike, HI8HH and I really enjoyed our QSO last nite. Thank You Mike.

73 - Petr, OK1RP

V4 - DXCC #24 on 60m

Hi all,

the Oct-22 was for me very lucky. The conditions were good and although the QRM on the band was high the deep fading allowed me to work another DX.

Why QSB allowed me to work long distance QSO? Simply because the QRM source came from long distance area also (I guess) and deep swing caused the level of the QRM went down and up also. During that time when QRM faded down the signals from DX station sometime went down too but sometime it went in opposite phase. In that case I was able to read the signals from the DX station for few seconds.

That is what I utilized on Oct-22 nite during our QSO with John, V47JA. John had very nice signal over here but the main issue was QRM on the band as mentioned. After many trials I copied his signals very well during the deep fading of the QRM and I was able to complete the QSO on 60m band with him as my #24 DXCC.

My setup was again K3 from Elecraft just the AGC was OFF and NB ON (dsp t3-1 / IF NAR3) and internal preamp ON only. I changed the setting of the AGC as I realized the noise came dramatically down with turning OFF the AGC loop. I am not using my external low noise / high IMD preamp by W7IUV as it is under re-designing completely according to his web page http://w7iuv.com/.

Best regards,

73 - Petr, OK1RP

Sunday, December 25, 2011

OK1RP actual scores - updated

OK1RP actual scores on 60m Tropical band (26/12/2011)

1st QSO on 60m ever: GW3UEP
1st overseas/USA on 60m ever: San, K5YY
Longest distance: 8775.4km (K5YY)
DXCC (wkd/cfm): 25/4 (GW, G, GM, OK, OZ, CT, EI, K, LA, 9A, TA, LZ, UR, DL, TF, OX, GD, OM, VP9, 4X, CU, KP4, SV, V4, HI)
WAS60 (wkd/cfm): 9/5 (AR, FL, NJ, OH, VA, NC, IL, TX, SC)
WAC60 (wkd/cfm): 3/3 (EU, NA, AS)
WAZ60 (wkd/cfm): 7/5 (14, 15, 4, 5, 20, 40, 8)
Total QSOs: 102
Initials: 70

It sounds not so bad according to current setup isn't it? Well I will have no chance to improve it so much as my permit is ending by end of this year 2011.

My enthusiasm and motivation to improve the setup went dramaticaly down but well I am still on the band and trying to study the propagation vs antennas etc.

See You on the air till 31/12/2011 my friends,

73 - Petr, OK1RP

60m band in DL - update

Hi all,

yesterday I got email from Wolf, DK5AI regarding the 60m band in Germany as follows:

Well, situation about 60m is unchanged. I just read articles about that but officials of DARC think there is no chance in the (near) future. Probably there is a very little chance for single people to apply for an experimental licenses, like we have on 70 MHz at the moment. But that is (also 70 MHz) NO amateur radio, its "Experimental Radio". That is all I have for the moment Petr. Have a happy and healthy New Year 2012, always glad to hear from you.

73 de Wolf, DK5AI

So another bad news from central EU country coming regarding the operation on the Tropical band. It seems that not only OK land but also Italy, Germany and few others has the similar troubles with 60m band.

We can wish to all of us an improvement in the near future. Thank You Wolf for Your updated information and good luck.

73 - Petr, OK1RP

60m band in Italy - update

Hi all,

according to actual updated information from Antonio, I5NQK the 60m band is still not allowed in Italy.

Currently I know about few hams in Italy listening on the 60m actively but seems no chance to get permission for at least experimental operation.

Good luck in coming year 2012,

73 - Petr, OK1RP

Saturday, December 24, 2011

The worldwide country and frequency list for the 5MHz / 60meter band


the useful information has been posted on the yahoo group list as follows originated
by Bonnie Crystal, KQ6XA:

The worldwide country and frequency list for the 5MHz 60meter band is at:

It has all documented channels and VFO bands.
It also contains listings of unique and reported operations or activations on 60 meters.

I hope it will help to all of us as all the information over here are nicely and systematically organized.

73 - Petr, OK1RP

Merry Christmas to all 60m band friends


Christmas event coming quickly...

(in European countries even this evenning on 24th Dec) so I hope that You have everything arranged... and ready for Santa Claus (Noel, Jezisek etc.) visiting at Your home as he is on the way already...

I would like to wish the MERRY and HAPPY CHRISTMAS, healthy and relaxing time with family and if You was quite nice... then even some xmas gifts for You too!

Best regards,

73 and mni DXs on the band,

Petr, OK1RP

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The 60m link and ARRL survey by Steve, WB8IMY

The news item concerning the ARRL request for input for a proposed 60-meter band plan was just posted at . . .


The story contains links to the survey email “box” and the online survey.

73 . . . Steve Ford, WB8IMY