Two Resources for The Magic Band — 6 Meters/50 MHz

   If you’re new and don’t know about 6 meters, your timing is perfect because from (roughly) May thru August, the 50 MHz band is frequently open (via the sporadic E skip propagation mode — Google it) to all parts of the USA, and occasionally the world.   6 meters  is where you get the most bang for your DX buck on VHF, by far.   Plus, with the solar flux increasing above 100 and 10m coming alive, we’re getting to the point where 6m could open up worldwide via F2 propagation.  (Again, Google it)   2011 and 2012 have the potential to be the best 6m years since about 2000-2002.   It’s that 11-year sunspot cycle coming to a peak. 
 
   The 6m guys have a great resource in the FFMA Yahoo email group.  FFMA stands for Fred Fish Memorial Award.  To quote from the FFMA homepage, “In 1995, Fred Fish, W5FF (SK) completed the amazing achievement of working and confirming all 488 grid squares in the continguous 48 states on the 6 meter band”   
    Click on http://groups.yahoo.com/group/FFMA/ and get the story for yourself.   There are currently 3 FFMA award winners, and I suspect we’ll be adding more for years to come. 

    For my money, FFMA is probably the most proactive group I can think of on VHF.  If you join and follow along with their email list, you learn about all kind of rare grid activations that everyone on The Magic Band benefits from.   Plus you get solid advice on how to operate properly.  It’s just a fantastic list, and if you’re newer and join, do everyone a favor by being a good listener for some time.  They’ve got a nice thing going there, and I’d hate to steer a troll or loser their way.  
     If you’re new and want to start operating on 6m, there’s a bit of a learning curve.  The band can get very busy, and it pays to be a good operator by learning the protocols that have been in place for a long time.  I learned at least half of what I know about 6m, by observing the chat at the ON4KST.com 50 MHz room.  (Years ago, the chat site was www.dxers.info and I see this morning it’s back online, in a different format)  
    A very good 6m resource is:  http://www.smirk.org/     I haven’t visited SMIRK (Six Meter International Radio Klub) in some months and I see the website has gotten a nice facelift.   Looks good!   Once you’re at the SMIRK site, I suggest you take time to read and reread this part:  http://www.smirk.org/opaids.html   I see there’s plenty of 6m propagation info at the bottom.

3 Responses to “Two Resources for The Magic Band — 6 Meters/50 MHz”

  1. JD Says:

    Don’t forget about the 6 Meter Grid Bandit Sponsored DXpedition to EL58 in June. All the information can be found at this link: http://kcvhfgridbandits.com/kc_vhf_grid_bandits_044.htm

    This is their 2nd time going to this rare grid so if you missed out last time don’t missed out on this trip by the guys. Marshall/K5QE is heading this one up.

  2. JD Says:

    Here’s a page with good 6 Meter Links I have up on the Bandit Group Website:

    http://kcvhfgridbandits.com/kc_vhf_grid_bandits_044.htm

  3. JD Says:

    Wrong link. Here is the correct one:

    http://www.kcvhfgridbandits.com/kc_vhf_grid_bandits_042.htm