My First Contact via Satellite

I’ve been gearing up to work SO-50 lately.  Mostly just listening in, perfecting my setup, and perhaps overthinking things.


I use ISS Detector for Android on my Galaxy S5 to alert me to ISS and AMSAT flyovers.  I was busy when my phone alerted me to a nice 71° pass at just before 7pm local time.  Well, by the time I had a chance to grab my gear, I had only 2 minutes to spare.  Today, less was more, and with less… I made my first satellite contact.

I grabbed my tape measure antenna and only one radio, and connected it to the 2m side so I could transmit, and hopefully receive well enough.  Once the bird broke through 25° it came in nice and clear (there are mountains to the north where it began it’s pass).  I recorded the audio with my phone.  I have been working to use my TASCAM audio recorder, but didn’t have time to get it all together… plus, I’ve yet to come up with a way for the TASCAM to record my transmissions.  More tinkering to do there.

I waited for a break to get my call-sign in the mix, and ended up making contact with KM4LMF, who appears to be an even newer ham than I… As in a day or two ago?!  Nice job!

Here it is:

I attempted a couple more contacts, and WB3CSY ended up calling, I threw out my call-sign, but at the time I didn’t catch his call-sign and I kinda just had a brain fart, after having made my first contact.  Oh well… I was excited.

I’m sorry, WB3CSY… I’ll do better next time:


The tape measure antenna came through in a pinch!  Now I need to work on getting an HT that does SSB for the other AMSATs up there.

Other call-signs heard today:

KP4WK – Brandon, FL

WC7V – Livingston, MT

N0SPN – Kasson, MN

KN0E – Monticello, MO

KD8ATF – Ft. Ashby, WV

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