Here is a very innovative idea by Johan van Aarde ZS2I.
This evening he gave me a call and invite me to the "Kite" Airfield in Heiderand, Mossel Bay. He explained that he was going to test his "homebrew" satellite diplexer. Now what's so odd about this. Well, Johan decided to use a Daiwa coaxial switch to switch between 400Mhz and 145 Mhz instead of using a commercial diplexer. On my arrival at the site the satellite (AO51) was just above the horizon and it was not long before he made contact with Ettiene ZS6Y up in Gauteng. He also heard Andre ZS2BK and Hal ZS6WB. Being just a experimental setup it was not possible to work other stations. The Daiwa coaxial switch worked like a charm and the signal strength was good. Here is a few photos I took of Johan's satellite setup and him working AO51 this evening. Johan ZS2I is looking forward to work other stations from KF15BT in future. Look out for him on AO51. He will be on AO51 again tomorrow (7 March) evening at 18h00.
Image: The ZS2I portable satellite station. Left to Right - Daiwa Co-Ax switch, Kenwood HT and Speaker Mike. (Click on images for larger view.)
I hear you say something about signal strength loss through the switch. Well this was not evident and the antenna being used made up for the losses if there were any.