It turns out the best way to play with radios is away from everyone else.
I tried to find if someone had made a map of noise levels around Melbourne, but couldn’t find anything. Instead, I used a light pollution map, with the idea being less light pollution = less background noise.
Last weekend I spent a couple of hours at night, at boat ramp 50km south-east of the Melbourne CBD. And my hypothesis seems to have checked out.
I took a 6m squid pole, a 40m EFHW (for 40-20-15-10) and an IC-705.
I sent out WSPR beacon on 40m @ 10watts (I think) to see how everything was working, and well, it seemed pretty good.
I was also being heard all over the place on FT8 which was nice.
Only made a handful of contacts via FT8, but three in NA, and one in SA which was cool.
Took the time to listen to the new Shortwave Australia Broadcast on 4835 Khz too. Wasn’t perfect, but was still pretty damn good. Had very poor reception on 2310 Khz though. I assume it was my antenna setup?
I tried to send some SSTV too, but had tech issues (and people were talking everywhere on 40m).
I wish I could do this from home, but I suppose it gets me out the house.