Tuesday, May 13, 2014

WQ6X joins Team NX6T for a 4-Contest Weekend

The 1st weekend of May found me back at NashVille (@NX6T) in Fallbrook for an unusual bunch of contests; specifically, the Italian ARI Dx Contest and 3 QSO parties, 7QP, INQP & NEQP. 
We ran three K-3 radios into two ACOM 2000 amplifiers, using an elaborate lockout mechanism between the radios.  Theoretically, each radio could work any contest, although in reality it was sometimes quite confusing. 
Passing the "EASY Button" around helped, and, it wasn't enough.

Using WINTEST allowed us to log all contests with one program.  After the contest, some lucky soul got to break the log file into FOUR Cabrillo files; one for each contest.  Another approach would have been to run the ARI contest on one radio and the QSO parties on the two other radios, sharing a single logfile. 

While RTTY activity was quite prevalent in 7QP and ARI, we never took the time to test-drive the mode before the contest and in the end couldn't make it work - Ooooopppsss.
The QSO parties had various start and end times throughout the weekend.  Why can't they follow the lead of CQP and simply make their QSO parties 24 - 36 hours in one time allocation?

The ARI Dx contest is a 24 hour affair which ran from 5am Saturday morning to 5am Sunday morning (Pacific time).  Stations worldwide are allowed to work each other exchanging serial #'s, with each country counting as a multiplier.  Additionally, stations are encouraged to work Italian stations, counting each Italian province as a multiplier.

For ARI:
Band    CW Qs    Ph Qs    RTTY Qs    Mults
160:    0    0    0    0
80:    0    0    0    0
40:    26    0    0    15
20:    9    34    0    30
15:    83    28    0    63
10:    5    1    0    4
Total:    123    63    0    112   
Total Score    108,976

For 7QP:
Band    CW Qs    Ph Qs    Dig Qs
160:    1    0    0
80:    25    8    0
40:    78    40    0
20:    79    130    0
15:    26    7    0
10:    5    1    0
Total:    243    186    0    Mults    117   
Total Score    118,638

 For NEQP:
Band    CW-Dig Qs    Ph Qs
80:    3    0
40:    19    9
20:    69    57
15:    35    7
10:    4    2
Total:    130    75    Mults    46   
Total Score    15,410

Band    CW-Dig Qs    Ph Qs
80:    0    3
40:    5    1
20:    7    15
15:    35    7
10:    3    2
Total:    15    21    Mults    20   
Total Score    1,740

Overall we made a total of 866 QSOs amongst all the contests, SSB & Cw.

One of my concerns about QSO Party scoring is that many QP's lump stations using packet clusters in with legitimate Multi-OP stations, instead of classifying then as Single-OP Assisted.  I think this mis-categorization puts an operating quality limit on BOTH categories; especially when you consider that Multi-Op stations are by default allowed to use packet clusters.
For clarification, I have written to the organizers of 7QP & NEQP. 
This is what I asked:

Subject: M/S Mis-Categorization??
In evaluating past QP records, I noticed that MANY M/S entries have only ONE operator.
As I understand it using a Packet Cluster makes you Multi-OP.
I DISAGREE with this.  As I understand it, the use of other sources of information should make you Single-OP ASSISTED.
The strategy for actually using multiple-operators .vs. various various forms of outside information is RADICALLY different, and therefore should not be in the same category.  It puts BOTH categories at a disadvantage.
Am I missing something?

Did you work any of the QSO parties or the ARI contest?
If so, how did it turn out?
Do you have NX6T in your log?