Well 12cm really. Here in VK we have access to 2300~2302 and 2400~2450. Which makes it a bit hard to decide where to spend your money. Do I want to work the locals every now and again or do I want to have a good go at EME. Well for me it was both. So now I have a couple of transverters for this band. 13cm is getting quite popular as more and more guys get the gear together and head out to local hill tops for a play.
Started off with a VK5EME 13cm kit and LO. Once I had built it I wasn’t very happy with the stability of the finicky LO. But it did good service for 2.4 GHz local stuff but I still wanted to get on EME. So then I got myself a DEMI 13cm transverter kit. With a 2m IF 144 MHz would come out at 2304 MHz. So I tune my radio to 141.990 MHz for transmit and listen on 144.XXX MHz. When DEMI came out with a new PLL LO for their series of transverter I replaced the microLO crystal locked LO in all my DEMI transverters with the new A32 PLL LOs. And now all my transverters are locked to 10 MHz GPS.
After some testing with Steve VK2XDE we found that the DEMI transverter will play OK on 2.4 GHz as well.
Now my 13cm DEMI is the heart of my 6cm transverter. As now I use a Kuhne kit on 2.4 GHz, with external GPS locked PLL, to work the local guys. With a 35W “Pryo-Joe” amplifier.
My portable setups have had many changes over the last couple of years. Started out with the BBQ grill antenna with standard MMDS feed mounted on a speaker stand.
Then I made some VK2AES cavity back feeds, which go very well and are easy to build, and mounted these on the BBQ grill. VK2AES did a presentation on his feeds at Gibbstech when I first went in 2008.
Now I have a 1.2m dish mounted on the ute tray. With the cavity back feeds this is a winner and is also used on 23cm, 9cm and 6cm. At 13cm the dish has about 27dBi gain (assume 50%) so at 35W makes around 17KW ERPI. Ouch!
For EME I use the DEMI with a 220W “Pryo-Joe” amplifer and a G4DDK pre-amp into a 2.4m Dish. Haven’t been that active on EME as every time I setup it rains and rains and rains. Hope to be more active over the next couple of months and I have 4.8m dish to put up yet which bring me up into the bigger leagues.
My best distance is with VK5DK/P at 255 Km and PY2BS on EME at 13389 Km.