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Remote monitoring while chasing RFI source

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Author Topic: Remote monitoring while chasing RFI source  (Read 9742 times)
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« on: April 03, 2009, 03:42:44 PM »

I just figured out a simple and easy way to sniff out rf interference such as line noise, that may be killing my radio reception back in the shack. 

For example, you may find a source of line noise, shake the guy wire on the pole and notice that it affects the portable receiver you have with you.  But is that the same line noise source that is causing your problem back at the shack?  Or I may want to monitor my receiver from the shack, while trying to eliminate the trash my computer modem is generating from the house.  Or perhaps I wish to adjust the terminating resistor at the far end of the beverage for a null in signals coming in from the rear direction.

Normally, this takes being in two places at once, having a competent helper or somehow being able to remotely monitor the receiver.  One solution might be  to re-transmit the audio from the receiver using a short range transmitter such as a 2m CB, or use a set of walkie-talkies.

But it dawned on me that I already have on hand everything I need.  Left over from the 60's, I still have a working phone patch.  I hadn't connected it up for decades, but I tried it out the other day and it still works perfectly, which I fully expected since it contains nothing but passive components.  So to remotely monitor my receiver, all I have to do is connect the phone patch, call my cell phone number, patch in the audio from the receiver, lay down the phone and monitor my signal from anywhere I go, within range of the mobile phone.

The minutes tick away so I could save on cellphone charges by arriving at the destination first and then signalling my wife to dial the cell phone number and switch in the patch, to avoid wasting the minutes taken to travel to the noise source, in case it is out of the immediate area.  It might even be easy to design a gadget that would automatically connect the phone patch and re-dial the cell phone number, after I initially call the landline phone from the cell phone, send a tone from the key pad and then hang up.  But minutes are not that much a problem with mine; I rarely use more than a small fraction of my allocation per month, so I won't worry about anything that hi-tech, and my noise sources would rarely be more than 5 minutes away in any case.

Don, K4KYV                                       AMI#5
Licensed since 1959 and not happy to be back on AM...    Never got off AM in the first place.

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