HamClock and a Quick Guide to Propagation

TopicHamClock and Quick guide to Propagation
Equipment RequiredInternet + Raspberry Pi (Pi 4 preferred but should work on Pi 3b) – optional Monitor
CostsAbout $110AUD if you need a Pi
Document last reviewed and updated (reviewed each year)13th January 2014 – Published


I have been using HamClock at least since early 2021. Originally on a Linux PC, but later on a Raspberry Pi after I started an eco drive in the shack reducing my energy footprint, especially with devices that I keep running during the day. I have regular pushed HamClock to fellow hams, but I found:

  • Unless you have really get into it, you don’t realise its value.
  • If you have not really learnt propagation tools and what they provide again you don’t realise the value

It has been interesting to watch the YouTube channels finally start picking this product up en masse, particularly in the last 4-6 months, even though it has been around for almost 6+ years.

However, one of the issues is that many of the YouTube videos spend more time on the build and building it on a Pi, or racing to get their video online before the next person, than concentrating on what the product does, how to use it, or what the information means and indeed, where the information comes from.

When you complete your foundation licence, you come out, keen as mustard, but you realise your extent of knowledge on HF propagation, extends to some key words such as F Layer (including F1 & F2), Sporadic E, Skip and refraction. That’s what the foundation licence is all about, a licence to learn.

Building HamClock and learning its features was a driver to learn more about HF propagation, one of my weakest subjects whilst working through my exams for each level, a subject that I found very “dry” when trying to read books or articles, but found a renewed interest to learn when it became a “living” subject with radio in hand, HamClock by my side, along with live charts and readings.

Hopefully, if you have not immersed yourself in HF Propagation before, this article will spark your interest and start you down a learning path that increases your enjoyment of Amateur radio.

What this article is not about.

We are not going to teach you about Linux nor how to install HamClock on Linux. HamClock can be installed on various products which support Debian Linux systems or its derivatives, with the most popular one being the Raspberry Pi, but include Ubuntu, Mint. etc. Even if you don’t want to install your own Linux, there is a product called INOVATO which already has Linux installed, and when you boot it up, it asks if you want to enable HamClock. So either way, whether you want to build it yourself, or pretty well just turn it on, there is a solution for you.

What this article is about.

This article will start with a summary of information services that HamClock uses as source feeds. We don’t have the time to dive deep into each of these services, as each one is a subject in its own right, but we will talk about it and where you can look for further information. We will quickly go over topics like VOACAP, MUF, DX Clusters, NOAA Space Weather scales, Planetary K Index, NCDXF Beacons and more. We do this as it is important to understand what HamClock is presenting on the screen along with other information such as Live Spots, SOTA and POTA posts, Contest information, Satellite Tracking etc.

Once we have gone through the summary, this article will then take you through the setup of the software configuration of HamClock so that you can understand what the options are that make this is very powerful, informative tool for your Ham shack. We will run through each of the important setup options that make this tool a fantastic addition to your shack.

HamClock, why not GeoChron or Simons World Map?

Finally, why should you install this HamClock over other Ham clocks like Simons World clock or even the Geochron 4K. They are all good products, each with their feature’s and benefits, but ultimately it comes down to price and features. For Geochron’s price, which is close to the cost of a low cost Rig or a high end Rig Expert, it is just too much unless you have he money to burn, or wanting the eye candy to top off your shack. Simons world clock is good, but definitely a lot less features, but it gained a loyal following due to its simplicity, but probably more so due to its ability to run on Windows. When it finally comes down to it, I feel the best one comes down to the following:

  • Runs on low cost hardware as it will generally be dedicated to the task.
  • Provides a wide range of information that is directed at Amateur Radio
  • Great set of features and functionality
  • Gets regular updates which are simple to install (with no Linux knowledge)

Other features of HamClock that we don’t have enough time to go through, which you may not be aware of, that make this product flexible for use in your shack.

  • Web interface (great for controlling from your workstation) – Same control as if in front of it
  • WebAPI
  • Supports installation of NoMachine for complete remote control
  • Tracking of Satellites
  • Rig Control (click on spot frequency)
  • Local Shack Temperature (with BME280 installed/connected to your Pi)
  • EME Planning tool.
  • Customisation of RSS Feed URL’s as well as local file

What is HamClock?

HamClock is an opensource application

HamClock is a tool for the shack providing instant and updated information on propagation, SOTA and POTA spots, NCDXF beacon frequencies and much, much more as well as UTC Time,

Your local and DX times and weather.

Originally written by Elwood Downey, WBØOEW and released as open-source

Originally designed for an ESP8266, but now installed on Raspberry Pi’s and/or basically any Debian derived operating system (e.g. Ubuntu Raspbian, Mint etc)

Commercially available if you don’t want to build your own from several providers or you can even order an Inovato SBC with single key stroke installation and it only costs about $AUS110 + UPS Delivery

Can use a old TV or Monitor

Information Services

Now at the heart of HamClock are the information feeds. Without these, or even an understanding of these, HamClock will look nice, but you won’t be getting the full benefit from it.

For this reason we will quickly go over these services/feeds, but as mentioned, we are not going to be able to do the subjects any justice. I thoroughly recommend picking a subject, one at a time, and learn what it is all about, what effects can it have on your receiving and transmitting, then move onto the next one. You will then have an idea what you are looking at on HamClock.

So lets start with these services…..

NCDXF Beacons

International Beacon Project beacons, run by the Northern California DX Foundation (NCDXF). The NCDFX, in cooperation with the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) constructed and operates worldwide network of High-Frequency Radio beacons on 14.100, 18.110, 21.150, 24.930, and 28.200 MHz.

The beacons are in USA (New York, California and Hawaii), Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Japan, Russia, Hong Kong, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Kenya, Israel, Finland, Madeira, Argentina, Peru and Venezuela.

These 18 beacons help you assess the current condition of the ionosphere.

Beacons transmit for ten seconds on each frequency in turn in the sequence shown below. They send the call sign at 22 wpm and 100 watts, then four 1-second dashes at 100 w, 10 w, 1 w and 0.1 w

These beacons transmit on a schedule, so even if you cannot decode CW at 22WPM, you can determine the beacon by the time schedule shown in the table below

With a tool like HamClock, you don’t even need to refer to this table as HamClock will show you the beacon on the map, when it is active (e.g. its turn in the rotation), and the colour will tell you what frequency it is currently transmitting on. I can listen to the rig, and immediately confirm what I am hearing, and how good the conditions are (in realtime).

VOACAP (Voice of America Coverage Analysis Program)

Now this is an information/prediction service that you will need top spend a little time to learn with various settings and variables that will make a difference to the result you will obtain.

VOACAP has evolved from a prediction program called ITSA-1, this later evolved into IONCAP, and after this VOA funded further development, which officially became VOACAP in 1993, and was used by VOA as well as many other HF Commercial Broadcasters since.

“VOACAP is a probabilistic model that predicts HF propagation between a radio transmitter (Tx) and receiver (Rx) at any two points on Earth over a 24 hour cycle. It also predicts global areal coverage for a single Tx location and time. VOACAP predicts 22 parameters, including Signal-to-noise Ratio (SNR), Reliability (% chance of successful comms), Required Power Gain, Signal Power, Field Strength at Receiver, MUF, LUF and Propagation Angle.

The VOACAP model is based on monthly averages of ionospheric conditions, Tx and Rx system characteristics, antenna and surrounding ground characteristics and man-made noise.”


The website can be reached at www.voacap.com

on that page you will find the following “buttons”

Click on the VOACAP for Ham Radio

On the top of the page, you can select your TX QTH and also your RX QTH using Maidenhead Grids or you can set the exact Latitude and Longitude. However, I find it easier just to drag and drop the location markers.

Once you have your markers in place, select you mode, then select your power, and the click on the Antennas button and the panel shown below will pop up. I generally set this to 1/4 Wave with ground plane. If you have a Yagi, then change this to suit your antenna setup.

Once you have done that, click on Prop Charts, and by default it will bring up the Circuit Reliability, and from this we can see that my best chance using CW to Japan will be at 1300 UTC on 20m, where as at 2000UTC, my chances are severely reduced across most of the bands.

Finally if you click on the Prop Wheel (which most people use), you can see the same representations on a wheel with 2000hr showing very few colours filled in, and the ones that are, are below 20% reliability, where as at 1300hr, most are coloured, and the 17m and 20m bands are showing >80% or 90% circuit reliability.

There are many more options in this tool for you to work with, and experiment with. As I mentioned, this subject alone can go on for hours. But this will get you started.

Just one quick point to save you some frustration. Once you have set your TX location, and setup your Antennas, your power and mode, it will not save automatically. If you want to save them, you need to click on the Dot in the Circle Icon

This saves it into the browser as cookies, so if you are using the same browser, it will pick them up automatically and will save you a great deal of time when you visit the site again or you change the variables that you are working with

MUF – Maximum Usable Frequency

An Ionosonde is a high-frequency radar that sends short pulses of radio energy into the ionosphere.

Around the world, a hundred Ionosondes or so provide the data for MUF, however the world is a big place, and there are large ionospheric regions going unmapped by the ionosonde network.

In our own backyard, we have one in Canberra which opened in March 1935 and still running. It is located out the back of Mount Stromlo (pictured below). The Australian Ionosondes are managed by the Australian Space Weather Forecasting Centre – Bureau of Meteorology.

Ionosondes measure the highest frequency reflected back to earth (Fc, Critical Frequency) and the height above earth that this occurs (confirming what ionospheric layer is in play). Knowing the critical frequency at various points around the world enables calculation of MUF (Maximum Usable Frequency) for shortwave radio broadcast and two-way radio communication in those regions, with a rule of thumb that the MUF will be around three times the Fc.

The map below is what is produced from this data, and the information is updated every 15 minutes. As you can see the contours show the Maximum Usable Frequency in that area, so in Canberra we are showing 26Mhz, where as Brisbane if showing 33mhz for this particular time. You will also note (as would be expected) that whether it is day or night makes a difference in the maximum usable frequency. As you can see Europe and the US are showing much lower MUF with the night time there.


DX Clusters

A DX Cluster in simple terms is an internet site where you can post details about a DX connection you have either QSO’ed with or heard. If you are a die-hard DXer who needs that contact to complete an award, its a great way to become aware of DX contacts. Think of its as an automated bulletin board where Hams post hard to reach DX contacts that are live (or at least in a certain period).

DX Cluster sites allow you to set filters such as bands, locations, etc., so the information can be customised to what you want to see.

Whilst you can post the information directly onto a DX Cluster site, you will find that many of the logging applications will post spots directly to these sites, so you do no more than just log your contacts as per normal.

Radio DXFUN Cluster – www.dxfuncluster.com – I use this one at the moment.

DXHeat | DXCluster & DX Research Tool – Also I have had this one running for a short while. I still pop over to this one with the Band Activity showing as a heat map, but I don’t see this one used regularly by Oceania.

Now, not being a DXCC chaser (not being critical, just not who I am at the moment), I use DX Clusters more of another tool for to provide information on band conditions, even to contradict some band reports, or just to confirm what the propogation is showing and that a band is not optimum at the present time.

NOAA Space Weather Scales

A quick visit to the NOAA Space Weather Prediction Centre

Radio Communications Dashboard | NOAA / NWS Space Weather Prediction Center

Will provide the quick reckoner, with the important RSG measurements.

The scales are something you can go through in your own time via this URL

NOAA Space Weather Scales | NOAA / NWS Space Weather Prediction Center

Needless to say, the readings below of the latest observed and the predictions for the next three days all showing none (or zero) is exactly what we are looking for.

Just a quick guide

  • R = Radio Blackouts (Scale 1 to 5, zero being none)
  • S = Solar Radiation Storms (Scale 1 to 5, zero being none)
  • G = Geomagnetic Storms (Scale 1 to 5, zero being none)

These are important to monitor, as in some cases of high readings, you might as well turn off your rig, or cancel that SOTA hike as you will most likely be wasting your time. Again I am not recommending you hang your hat on propagation results. It’s just like the weather, telling you to expect a downpour in the morning and you cancel a trip, only to wake up, find the sun shining, and you have wasted a great day.

Planetary Kp Index

Just for starters, Planetary refers to the Earth, nothing to do with other planets. Changes in the Sun’s activity can cause big changes in the Kp index.

Kp Index is derived from measurements obtained from 13 geomagnetic observatories between 44 degrees and 60 degrees northern or southern geomagnetic latitude

The table below provides an understanding of the Kp Index numbers with 0 to 2 being the preferred.

More info on the Kp Index – https://www.spaceweatherlive.com/en/help/the-kp-index.html

Solar Flux Index (SFI)

SFI is an indication of the degree of ionization in the higher stratospheric regions. Higher SFI values favor good propagation conditions on the amateur radio bands 20 m and above.

Best time to operate on HF is after a solar flare eruption. As soon as the solar storm declines, the noise on the bands decreases, combined with an increase of the maximum usable frequency MUF. This often last until sunset.

X-Ray Flux

The measurements are taken by NOAA’s GOES satellites with an integration interval of 1 minute

Events like flares and/or Coronial Mass Ejections can create a sudden increase in X-ray energy emitted from the Sun.

Solar X-rays are an accepted part of Ionospheric health but too much X-Ray can cause excessive ionosation of the D-Layer Region leading to HF Communication difficulties or blackouts.

It is normally represented by a Letter matching the level below and a number which is the multiplier.

Naturally the lower the Level, is what we are looking for, with a significant impact felt when Mx.xx is shown for the level.

A good page summarising Solar Flux, the Ap Index and the Kp Index in plain english

Solar indices – making sence of the numbers for radio propagation

HamClock Setup

Page 1

Now we can move on to HamClock setup and start to bring this all together. When HamClock starts you will have 10 seconds to press a key to enter setup (if you don’t, HamClock will start up as normal).

We will walk through each of the setup pages, providing some detail on each of the options in the setup pages.

So assuming you have pressed a key, you will come up with the following initial screen. Mouse and Keyboard works on these screens, and one thing that appears to be missed by initial users is that you have several pages, and you need to click on the <Page 1> to go to the next page, only pressing <Done> when you have completely finished all the setup pages.

Call : Naturally add in your call sign

Enter DE Lat: Here you have a choice, either go across to Grid: and enter in your Maidenhead Grid Square (leaving Lat: and Lng: blank), or leave Grid: Blank and enter your exact coordinates. Now the exact coordinates for the Mt Mugga Scout Hall is -35.337656N 149.133101E (obtained from https://coordinates-converter.com/ which provides all the formats needed. So you would enter this in as 35.337S (the minus is not accepted in HamClock, so minus becomes South), and 149.133E is entered as the longitude. It should automatically update the Grid: to the correct Maidenhead Grid.

or use gpsd – if you have a GPS dongle – plug this into the USB port – no advantage unless you are portable

or IP Geolocate – Not accurate enough – based on your ISP Location which could be Melbourne or Sydney.

Don’t worry about these two options above as the majority of you will be using this with a wired or wireless connection to your home network, which will have an internet connection and will obtain the correct time from the NTP Time services.

Wifi : Fairly straight forward – however if you setup under the operating system or are wired – not required

Click on on the right hand “>” of the green <Page 1> to move to the next page

Page 2

Now we have discussed DX Clusters in our earlier info feeds section.

Now, you will need to do a little research depending on which DX Cluster service you have decided to settle on. You will find (if they support) it, that they call it a Telnet interface, usually with a port number and login. Now if you have not “played” with DXSpider interface before, you generally need to register with or at least email the DXSpider owner. Once registered, you will then have access to their Telnet interface.

Before you add it, test it with Telnet (Putty, etc) by opening a Telnet session to the URL you have been provided with, with the correct port number and connect. If you are connected to the DXSpider Telnet interface, it will normally request your login (usually the login you setup with the service, which is normally your call sign. Leave it connected for a short while, and it should populate over a few minutes like below

If you are seeing something similar in your Telnet session, you can add these details to the DX Cluster setup in HamClock.

Now the Spider commands allow you to setup filters, so that your DX Cluster screen comes up with the specific information you are looking for and wish to be alerted about. I would leave these off and come back to this when you have had time to learn the Spider commands, and if you get these wrong, you will have nothing come through. If you do setup filters, practice through the Telnet interface first until you are happy with your command structure.

Before we leave this screen, there is one option we have not discussed which is the WSJT-X option. If you turn this on and provide a port number, it will disable the Cluster reporting, and instead will use the DX Cluster window to report WSJTX FT8 each time you reply.

Personally I have not had much use of this option, but for those that run automatic FT8 connections, it would be very useful to keep an eye on things. For those that are not aware, in WSJTX, you can set a the UDP Server as the network broadcast address (so if your local network is 192.168.1.x, then you can set So logging will come up on your DXCluster window providing the port you set in WSJT-X matches HamClock’s port. If you setup with the broadcast address, it means that other applications (e.g. Gridtracker) that utilise UDP Logging can also share in the communications.

Click on on the right hand “>” of the green <Page 2> to move to the next page

Page 3

Now the first three relate to Rig Control and Antenna Rotation.

rigctld? Is the daemon (service) that is part of the Hamlib tools, so if you have rigctl setup, HamClock will control the rig via rigctld. Rigctl is primarily written for Linux based environments. The ports that come up by default are generally the ones that are set by default in rigctld

rotctld? is the daemon (service) that is part of the Hamlib tools, so if you have rotctld setup, hamClock will control the direction of the Antenna. Rotctld is primarily written for Linux based environments. The ports that come up by default are generally the ones that are set by default in rotctld

flrig? is the application that is part of the fldigi / flarq that you might be using for your digital modes already. This software is available for Windows and Linux based environments. The ports that come up by default are generally the ones that are set by default in flrig.

Now these are mainly control programs for your Rig and Antenna rotator, and the main purpose for these is that you can click on a DX Cluster frequency, SOTA or POTA Spot. This will set your radio to the right frequency, and if you have an antenna rotator, it will set the correct heading. If rotctld is correctly setup, it will also show up a manual control pane for the rotator, and if set to Auto can be set to track the current satellite. I need to make it clear, I have not used the Rotctld, but have tried and tested rigctld and flrig.

ntp? you can set your own NTP Servers if you wish, otherwise I leave it to the default set of servers.

ADIF? This points to a local directory and file for a ADIF file of your QSL contacts. If set this will bring up an ADIF pane. This relies on your ability to write and update a file, so could be useful.

Click on on the right hand “>” of the green <Page 3> to move to the next page

Page 4

Map center lng : This one is straight forward. You grab your longitude setting and set here. You only have 4 characters, so set the number and the E or W. You will find that you will normally set 149E for the east coast of Australia. This is only used for positioning of your DE, so that your DE (Australia) is centred on the map.

GPIO? If you do not have a Humidity / Temperature sensor connected to the, like above, the readings will be 0.000 for pressure and temperature. If you have one or two BM280’s connected to the i2C bus, then it will display readings if connected to I2C address 76 and 77. The idea of two sensors is that you can have one inside your shack and also one external to your shack. If you do not have sensors on these addresses, then turn this off to avoid erroneous readings.

KX3? This will set your KX3 to correct frequency when you click on a DX Cluster spot. Not being a KX3 owner, I have not seen this in action, and also cannot confirm whether it works for SOTA / POTA spots as well.

Brightness : Does not appear to be useful – Probably more reading to be done when I have time.

Click on on the right hand “>” of the green <Page 4> to move to the next page

Page 5

These are fairly straight forward

Date Order? Change to suit the Australian date order

Week starts? Generally accepted that our week begins on the Monday

Units? Metric for Australia

Log usage? Normally set to opt-out so that it does not send usage information back, but your choice.

Demo Mode? Good to run through once, to look at what is available as information. See something not coming up on yours, then do some research

Bearings? Generally this will be True North, especially for pointing your beam antenna

Spot paths? Whether you want thin or thick path lines on your map. I prefer thin lines, otherwise looks messy. Your choice.

Full Scrn? Finally whether you want a full screen mode, so that you have minimal black borders and greatest screen use. This will depend on your monitor size (especially if using a low cost tv that was repurposed).

Click on on the right hand “>” of the green <Page 5> to move to the next page

Page 6

I don’t have say much about the next page. You just select the path colour that you want to change

As an example, we have clicked on the Sat path, and one we have we go across to the other side and click on the colour mix that we want. Do that for each one if required.

Click on on the right hand “>” of the green <Page 6> to move to the next page

Page 7

Ok the last page

Nothing exciting here. I pretty well leave this as it is. As my times differ, I find it easier to press the remote control when I walk in the shack for a couple of hours of radio. This might change when I retire in several years time, and I might set a schedule. Your call, what ever suits you.

Now you can click on <DONE>

HamClock Hints

To exit HamClock, to restart it to go into Setup, or to reboot, or to shutdown the hardware, with your mouse just press and hold the padlock for 3 seconds or more and then release, it should bring up them menu

If you don’ press long enough it will just close (or open) the padlock. When the padlock is closed it stops you accidentally changing the DX or DE. With it closed you can click on paths or beacons, and see further details such as bearing headings, distance, call signs, and frequencies involved in that path.

Clicking on the stopwatch will bring up a countdown timer,

You have several formats including a large hand clock of the digital one shown below. you can set the countdown from time.

Perfect for the contester trying to fit as many contacts in before the time is up, with a large display.

Most of the panels, you click once at the at the top area of the panel, and it will provide a selection of what items you want to display in that panel

Just select the ones you want to display in that Panel. Just remember if you select all, you could be waiting for while for it come into view. On this panel for instance, I normally have it set only to VOACAP in this panel, possibly sharing it with one or two others such as NOAA SpaceWX. Things like solar flux, Xray, I may have in the summary panel, eg unless you are interested in history, you probably don’t need the Planetary KP graph using up a large panel. These are figures that you might take a quick glance at.

The VOACAP screen on HamClock is a little simpler than what you may have seen on the VOACAP website, but displays enough information to be useful. On HamClock I set the TX and RX to the same as we did in the VOACAP run through we did previously.

Now the first thing you will notice is that the colours are different, but actually still make sense. The black is basically less than 10% Circuit reliability, red if less than 33%, yellow if less than 66% and green above that. So comparing to our VOACAP Online example, you can see green across several bands including 20m at 1300, and basically black across most bands at 2000. This screen makes sense especially if you are doing a quick visual, and if you need to check, you can go to the VOACAP site and investigate further if needed.

Some panels have other clickable areas

On the VOACAP panel, you can change the time scale from DE to UTC, useful if you have trouble mentally getting your head around UTC conversions.

Most of the settings for VOACAP can be changed as mentioned above. One of the other important variables used in VOACAP is the Antenna type/Gain. It should be noted that HamClock uses the Antenna type of ISOTROPIC (0.0dBi Gain) for its calculations, which will be fine for most verticals and some dipoles, but if you have a Yagi, you may want to check the VOACAP website.

By clicking on the 100W wording, the following will pop up.

So you can set the power that you would normally enter into the VOACAP website. Likewise, you can choose the mode, Take Of Angle (TOA), short or long path.

Whilst we are on the VOACAP, if you click on the 20m band on the VOACAP panel, it will change your map to the 20m Propagation/Reliability map similar to below.

And one very important point is that your DX location needs to be set for the VOACAP results to mean something. If you look at this VOACAP graph, as you can see it looks very different to the one we did a few paragraphs ago.

And this was with our DX location being set to Japan instead of the U.K.

This marker is your DE Marker (your QTH), with the orange in the middle. If you need to move it, then press and hold for 3 seconds on the map, and it will relocate. Note you will need to re-setup your Location Coordinates when you go back to your normal QTH. The idea is that you will not be changing this, hence the need to press and hold for 3 seconds, making it harder to accidentally move it. You can click once on the DE panel, and this will allow you set your correct co-ordinates there as these do not revert back to original setup parameters even after a restart, they stay set. This is why I now always setup with Maidenhead grid settings, as I know these off by heart, and I can quick re-enter them if I upset the settings.

Just be careful not to confuse your DE Marker with your Antipode marker (which is black inside orange). An antipode of a point on the earth is the region on the Earth’s surface which is diametrically opposite to that point e.g. if you drilled a hole from your DE Marker, through the middle of the earth it would come out where your antipode point is. This antipode marker moves automatically if you move your DE Marker.

The following is your DX marker. Anywhere on the map and click once, and it will place the DX marker there.

Remember too, you can click once in the DE Panel or the DX panel and it will bring up a dialog to change the Maidenhead Grid for the markers. For some this may be easier.

Clicking on Terrain will bring up the choices for maps / overlays

If you select MUF Map, in this time and date it shows that the Maximum Usable Frequency (MUF) is around 20-25Mhz for most of Europe, Africa and Oceania.

Now we can go on an on for ever, as there are so many “Easter Eggs”, and I am still finding them 3 years later. Click on the wireless settings/IP address, and it will bring up a Live wireless strength graph, and remember this product is being updated regularly, so new features or changes are being added all the time.

However one thing you need to remember, is propagation is not an exact science. We do get some exact data, but the rest of it is predictions based on experience, and knowledge.

Don’t close down your Amateur station, just because things are not favourable, as many have proven that propogation is not the be all and end all, and factors can be changed such as power settings, change of antenna’s and gain, timing as things can change in the space of a few hours.

Don’t over analyse it to death, just pickup the microphone and call CQ, you might be surprised.

What HamClock and all the propagation websites are, is a summary of conditions, that will either reinforce your thoughts on why particular bands are dead, or leave you looking for other possibilities. While HamClock is a good tool, I will still go back to the primary websites to further information or to confirm my reading of it.

That’s it, now enjoy!


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