Two weeks ago today (technically I know it’s now Saturday morning but I’ve not been to bed yet so I still think of it as Friday), I fired up a Raspberry Pi3 and installed the PiAware image using my old NooElec dongle and a really really bad aerial. An amateur radio 6m/2m/70cms vertical with around 20m of RG213. I was lucky to see anything.
On the Saturday, I deleted the image and started again using the ADS-B Receiver Project image and set up feeders to all four sites it supports. I built a quarterwave groundplane aerial, hung it in my window and watched my figures go up, no doubt helped by the preamp/filter which arrived the same day.
On the Wednesday afternoon, I put up an external Moonraker collinear and watched my aircraft count go up but the range go down so on the Thursday afternoon I swapped the RG213 for EcoFlex15 and saw the range go back up and the aircraft count go even higher.
On the Friday, one week after starting to play around with this tracking lark, I received reports from over 3,000 aircraft for the first time.
The Saturday after, I received the latest RTL-SDR dongle so ran the gain calculation thing for a few hours in the afternoon and my aircraft count was much lower - It does that to the stats.
That was the end of the first week.
The second week, it’s just pickled along with no changes to the setup, averaging over 3,000 aircraft/day with Friday being the highest at 3,132.
Tomorrow I’m raising the aerial another 10ft so that it’s going to be 37ft AGL and moving the preamp to the masthead. Beyond that, I’ll be getting into diminishing returns so I can’t see any other upgrades in the immediate future.
I’ve rekindled my interest in aviation (to the extent that when I hear a plane overhead, I’m rushing to the computer screen), I’ve used some of my much neglected *nix skills, I’ve learned some new *nix stuff and I’ve even been able to tweak some scripts. I’ve also got VRS working on an old XP computer I was hoping to retire. So much for that plan
I’ve also discovered a great forum with a lot of people keen to help and offer useful advice. Thanks everyone for your patience with what may have been some dumb questions this last fortnight.
So here’s a picture showing my stats for the last two weeks. Just because it looks good