Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Blast From the PAST: Hawaiian QSO Party (HQP)

2 0 1 1 - H Q P  (from Mt. Diablo)
HQP is an "interesting" QSO party;
as QSO Parties go.  Being in the
South Pacific, band opening times are different from other QSO parties. 

Just like the other 49 states, Hawaii is also segmented into counties.  The purpose of a QSO Party is to activate
as many counties as possible, during a relatively short period; although the 48 hour length of this GiG makes it the lengthiest of all state QSO parties.


During after-math "processing" of this years KQP event I took an insightful look into the past, recollecting the handful of HQP GiGs, many of which resulted in 2nd & 3rd place certificates.

It all began with a 2011 camping trip (powered by a pair of poorly-charged marine batteries) atop
Mt. Diablo, overlooking the SF bay, giving more-or-less direct access to the South Pacific.  I've run the All Asia contest from atop Mt. Abel in So. California several times; running HQP from atop Diablo was done in the same spirit.



During the time-period for the 2012 & 2013 HQP events, I happened to be running portable from
the Phoenix Lodge.  The point of those exercises was to demonstrate the viability of a 2nd-story operation using only an MFJ "Apartment antenna".  While it of course could not compare to a full-sized vertical, and was more-or-less pointing away from the South Pacific, somehow KH6/KH7
was heard and worked.

During 2014 - 2016, I was doing other things during HQP weekends.  In 2017 WQ6X found time to put a meager 28 QSOs in the HQP Log while working other QSO parties and YO DX contest remotely from NX6T in Fallbrook.

The BI-directional capability of the Stepp-IR allows working Hawaii as well as the N-E USA, on into Europe.  If a desired signal is marginal, the Stepp-IR can be pointed "directly" at that station, returning to BI-directional mode after
the QSO is snagged.


For 2019, the goal is to Dual-OP the multi-contest from W7AYT's QTH.
LooK for an upcoming BLOG entry describing what actually happened.

Do YOU ever play around in the Hawaiian QSO party?
How many Hawaiians are in YOUR LoG?

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

7 Reasons You [probably] Should Not Call Me - Part 1

 
Because radio amateurs utilize a shared frequency spectrum, during radiosport weekends when
I make a "CQ Contest" call, other hams (often BORED out of their Minds) will call-in, looking for attention; which may or may not be the correct thing to do.  In all too many cases, if they had read
the contest rules (who does THAT anymore?) they would have known that working me offers no
QSO credit in that particular contest event.

You too may also be wondering when it is appropriate to call me during a radiosport event. 
To assist your understanding in this, here is my list of times YOU  SHOULD NOT CALL ME;
when to actually call me you can then deduce for yourself.

This first point should actually be a "no-brainer", and it often isn't.

When I am calling "CQ JA" or "CQ EU", what part of that call actually indicates that I am looking for calling stations residing in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Texas or Louisiana?


If I am not calling for you, then please do not call me.  If you don't know what "JA" or "EU" means, then, YOU SHOULD NOT CALL ME.



Here is another no brainer:
If I am having trouble deciphering a callsign
and send something like "KX6?", if your callsign
is WB4XYZ, then, YOU SHOULD NOT CALL ME.

You may be louder than the KX6 station, covering him up, making me send "KX6? AGN?".  This wastes everyone's time.

If you don't know what I mean when I send "KX6?", then, YOU SHOULD NOT CALL ME.

What part of "KX6" sounds like "WB4XYZ"?
Am I missing something?



If I send "CQ SS" and
you don't know what the "SS" means, then, YOU SHOULD NOT
CALL ME.

In this November contest event, I DO NOT want a signal report and I DON'T CARE what your name is. 

If you have read the Sweepstakes rules, then you know EXACTLY the six pieces of information I am expecting; if not, ask.  Otherwise, DO NOT
CALL ME.



If you hear me calling "CQ California QSO Party" (or "CQ CQP") and you are looking for a 20 minute ragchew, then, YOU SHOULD NOT CALL ME.

If you have read the CQP rules, then you know that what I am looking for is a QSO # and what State/Province you are located in - that is all I need and want. 

I could care less how much power you are running, what kind of antenna you are feeding into, what the weather is like, what you had for dinner, or what kind of beagle dog you have.

I may be interested in those things AFTER the contest, but for now, if you can't give me the required CQP information, then, DO NOT
CALL ME.



If I am making a typical "CQ CONTEST" call and you are simply looking for a signal report to verify your LOUDENBOOMER amplifier or the 12-element Signal-Pumper antenna are doing their job, unless you are willing to give me a proper contest exchange, then,
DO NOT CALL ME.
As it is, even if I DO send you "5-9-9" or "5-9" as part of the contest exchange, you may really only be S-2".  If you want a REAL signal report, catch me AFTER the contest.



If I am in the middle of making a contest exchange with ANOTHER station and I miss a piece of sent information, I may well send "AGN?  AGN?" until I receive
the information I need.

This is NoT the time to send
your "KB6LID" callsign.  This is the time for YOU to STFU and give me a clear frequency to complete the current QSO. 

Then (and only then) should you send your callsign; assuming you know what the contest rules are, FIRST.

If you do not know the contest rules, then, YOU SHOULD NOT CALL ME - read the contest rules first and THEN call me when you know how the game is played.



Sometimes things can get so out of hand on a run frequency that I end up sending "QRX!" many times until everybody listens and agrees to STFU while I regain my sanity and begin the frequency run all over again.

At other times LID operators will start calling CQ on my run frequency; had they been listening first they would know that THE FREQUENCY is IN USE.  Correct me if I am wrong, but this is why we should ALWAYS listen before we transmit.  When idiots like this attempt to move-in on my operation
I use the F-11 key to send "QRL QSY" again and again.  If they persist, then I send "KU6LID QRL QSY".

Bottom-line, if you are not sure whether or not you should call me, then most likely, YOU SHOULD NOT CALL ME; it's really as simple as that.  If you follow the edict of always listening before you transmit, then you will ALWAYS know whether or not calling me is the right thing to do.

What part of the above do you NoT understand?

If you have any questions about this, let me know.

"7  3"
C U in the next contest.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Does Shortwave Radio have a Future?

 
A recent Op-Ed piece in Radioworld.Com raised the question of Shortwave Radio having a future.  The author, Ruxandra Obreja is unabashedly chairman of Digital Radio Mondiale giving us no surprise that she argues in favor of shortwave radio continuing, altho with some modifications
to the form those transmissions will take.

The fact that I am writing this BLOG and referencing her stance means that overall I am in agreement with her points, altho admittedly I know very little about Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM).  I am a person who was introduced to shortwave broadcasting at the age of 12 (mid 60's) when most countries were represented on the 3 - 30 mhz shortwave spectrum.  Today, the [so-called] "countries list" has been reduced by over 60 percent.

Being that my current main shortwave receiver is the venerable Icom-R71 (mine being a late model) internet searching regarding ideas for my R-71 I happened across VR2MXQ's AF thru SHF Blog (Steve's Blog), with some useful information about this legendary Icom receiver.  Receivers such
as the classic R-71 are not obsolete in the world of DRM, altho they will need some modification
to be properly compatible.

Of course Amateur Radio will remain; cellphones and internet are not a replacement for unfettered/uncensored radio communications; especially during mother nature disasters,
such as the recent devastations encountered in the Caribbean during 2017 - 2018.

Even IF all of the major SW broadcasters were to disappear tomorrow, at the very least, the Pirate broadcast window (approx. 6.900 - 6.975) would continue to bring us their "brand" of independent programming.

Another vital part of shortwave broadcasting are the time and frequency standard services such as: WWV/WWVH, CHU, JJY and other stations around the world, many of which operate on frequency harmonics of 2.5, 5, 10, 15, 20 & 25 Mhz; altho CHU can be found on 3.330, 7.850 and 14.670.

A few years back WWV took a survey asking whether we thought the Space-WX forecasts were unnecessary as most people (underscore MOST) have access to the internet.  In my reply to their survey I pointed out that during TRUE emergency operations (where there may be NO internet access), receiving the Space-WX forecast updates every 4 hours may well be our only access
to such data.  When I run Field Day with W6SW atop Mt. Abel, the is rarely access to a cell
tower that far up and out from civilization.

Today, Space-WX forecasts (at 0:18 & 0:45 mins past the hour) are still with us.  Additionally,
the proposed shutdown of WWV/WWVH and other NIST services as was lobbied for during the 2019 government shutdown period has not only been averted, even MORE funding has been provided for these services - GO Figure.  I guess somebody in Washington IS listening once
in awhile after all.

Thanks to POOR USA involvement with shortwave broadcasting during the last 30+ years, it is easy to conclude that the use of shortwaves is also not happening around the globe.  While it is true that many countries have ceased shortwave broadcasting - as has happened with the CBC in Canada,
the Australian Broadcasting Corp (ABC) and Radio Nederland - other countries have increased their number of broadcast hours.

If CRI (China Radio International) or Radio Japan interests you, they are easily found throughout
the HF spectrum.  During contest weekends I often cannot wait for the 09:00z sign-on for Radio New Zealand (RNZ) on 5.940.  Also recently heard on 49-meters were a number of Caribbean / S-America stations playing a lot of interesting music.

While Popular Communications magazine is no longer with us, at least CQ magazine runs a monthly column known as "The Listening Post" which documents some of the latest happenings in the world of Shortwave Listening.  There are a number of useful websites for finding what frequencies and time-of-day various countries can be heard on the shortwave spectrum.  While it is true that the number of actual stations has reduced, it is arguable that today's program content is often better than ever.

Here are some URL's I have found interesting and/or useful:
  • [X] AmericanRadioHistory.Com
  • [X] ShortWave.Info
  • [X] C.Crane's Shortwave Frequency List
  • [X] Japanese shortwave frequencies
  • [X] Prime Time Shortwave Broadcasts
  • [X] Shortwave schedules around the world
  • [X] Shortwave Pirates
The above list is but a handful of websites I have found useful for finding things/stations to listen to throughout the shortwave spectrum.  If you expand beyond shortwave broadcasting per se', there is an abundance of clandestine and utility stations using HF frequencies that you can listen to; whether or not you understand WHAT it is you are listening to is another situation altogether.


The variety of radio equipment that can receive shortwave broadcasts is staggering.  Many SWL'ers (shortwave listeners) enjoy using 50 - 75 year old receivers to comb the shortwaves.  Others such as myself enjoy older (yet classical) receiving equipment, such as my nearly 30 year old ICOM R-71A.  Most amateur transceivers made in the last 35+ years have the capability of "General Coverage" reception.  My 20 yr-old Yaesu FT-1000mp is an EXCELLENT shortwave receiver; easily on par
with the Icom R-71.  The Yaesu's built-in DSP takes listening to the next level; although the R-71 works well into external DSP units.

In the last 20+ years we have been blessed with the emergence of - SDR - Software Defined Radios operating all over the world.  One of my favorites is the Dutch shortwave receiver at the University of Twente ([CLICK HERE] to hear it.)  Anyone who thinks the shortwaves are "DEAD" should listen to this or other SDR receivers around the globe.

The shortwave spectrum is truly alive and well, and loaded with interesting things to listen to.

When was the last time YOU scanned the shortwave spectrum?
If not recently, I can truly say, that you are TRULY missing out.

So what are you waiting for?.......

Monday, August 19, 2019

WQ6X Slips solo thru NAQP Ssb

It's no secret that for me  Ssb contests take 3rd-place in priority (Cw and RTTY GiGs come first). 

For this last weekend's 12 hour NAQP Ssb GiG, this couldn't be more evident. 

While I usually take Saturdays off work commitments kept me in the office much of the day; for this GiG I did not make
it to W7AYT's QTH until 23:30z.

The original plan was to dual-OP
the NAQP contest, until remote access problems sidelined remote Ssb access from Concord. 

Instead, an ad-Hoc run as WQ6X was made from the W7AYT QTH.

The "secret" came from cobbling together the Yaesu FT-1000mp, feeding the laptop speaker audio
to the radio by way of a twisted tangle of twisted-pair cables into the MFJ-1227 microphone adapter.
A generous use of audio coupling transformers kept the ground loop hum out of the Xmit audio, allowing N1MM controlled .Wav files to call CQ and send the "Ron in California" exchange message.

While space-WX reports indicated no [major] solar storms, the atmospheric noise-levels at W7AYT were astronomical.  80/160 meters turned out to be relatively quiet; then again, almost no one could hear me there.  Even the multi-array antenna'd N6RO (barely 5 miles away) could not hear me.  When Ken "pointed" his 80-meter array in my direction (to work another station) his signal came
up 3 S-units and WQ6X still could not be heard at his relatively quiet Oakley location.

Altho there is a psychological "insurance policy" from having an array of analog & DSP filters
available to massage the noise, most of these circuits are noticeably LESS effective in Ssb contests,  compared to Cw/RTTY signals which are essentially "binary" (On/Off) and are therefore more easily amplified, "twisted" and overall enhanced.

This weekend because of the noise, certain vocal sounds were nearly impossible to decipher. 
With RTTY and Cw, I let the computer decode the signals; with Ssb I must rely on the left/right parietal lobes of my brain to figure out what is being said.

While I was bummed that I could not properly remote in with the NX6T crew, team leader N6KI (Dennis) brought in some backup operators to keep all three stations active most of the time. 
This gave me the opportunity to concentrate on my own dismal operation in Concord.

This weekend was wrapped around by the International Lighthouse and Lightship weekend and the Rookie Roundup (RTTY) on Sunday.  Similar to previous years, I was disappointed to hear ZERO lighthouse activity.  This is a shame because running at/near lighthouses during the August NAQP GiG is a lot of fun.  You may remember that WQ6X did this back in 2012 running as W6L (shown
in the above picture).


On Sunday (18:00z) I found that the RTTY Rookie Roundup was on the WA7BNM calendar. 
While I found the event in N1MM's list of contests, there is no reference to it on the 3830 Scores website.  Searching off/on for a couple of hours, I heard virtually NO RTTY activity on 15, 20 or 40 meters.  From what I could tell, no one was running RTTY this last weekend.  If the rookies want us
to play with them, it is up to them to get things started.  With only KI5AIF in the log, I finally wrapped things up at 22:35z and shut the station down.

Did YOU run the NAQP Ssb contest?

Is WQ6X (or NX6T) in YOUR LoG?

Monday, August 12, 2019

WQ6X runs a Quicky Yet Quirkey WAE Contest

View from the U S S  H o r n e t  @ Alameda Point
As far as radiosport challenges go, the ARRL November Sweepstakes (SS) and the DARC Worked All Europe (WAE) contests, present a unique form of complexity.  Sweepstakes requires us to send
6 (six) pieces of information in order for a contact to be considered valid. 

In WAE, the initial exchange is a no-brainer; just 599 + Serial Number.  However, that's only half
of the point score.  To get 2-points for every QSO, it must be referenced in a QTC message to a European station.  Due to frequent internet dropouts during last year's WAE Cw contest I did not
send any QTC's as my dropouts would have frustrated the European OPs on the other end;
so instead I sent "no QTC", which was in a way just as frustrating for them. 
([CLICK HERE] to read about that.)

Operating time for this weekend had to be split up into segments.  After Europe disappeared on
40 meters I got some needed sleep in time for a few morning 20-m QSOs before heading over
to the USS Hornet (an aircraft carrier docked at Alameda Point).  My Toastmaster's Club (the Alameda Tongue Twisters) was running a table at the job fair event held on the ship. 
Unfortunately, the ham shack for the amateur station was not open this weekend,
so I missed out on listening to WAE from aboard ship.


At 23:00z turning the radio to 14014.14 (my favorite 20-meter Cw Frequency)  found a FRENZY
of Cw signals, but WHERE were the Europeans?  For we Southwest West Coasters there was a seemingly impenetrable "Wall" of W8/W9/W2/W1 stations to the North-East of Fallbrook; one of the
biggest barriers to hearing the 100-w (and less) EU stations.  This is something not even the best DSP filter can eliminate; even the MFJ-1026 and ANC-4 noise cancellers can't touch that "artifact".

Amazingly, one of the best solutions to this "problem", was none other than parking WQ6X's callsign on a run frequency, hoping that they eventually find me; they did, but so did the horrible QRN levels, making 40-meter QSOs difficult (at best) and 80-meters even more impossible.


As I mentioned earlier, sending QTC messages can result in 2X the basic QSO score, making it well worth learning how to do.

From my experience,
the N1MM+ approach
to sending QTC messages
is quite efficient; the only complaint being my inability to send a single field from a given line of data and the non-working Ctrl-Z (it had to be selected from the menu)

Otherwise, it was simply clicking on one "Snd" message after the other. 
The [Exit] button allows "bailing out" at any time.


For reasons of keeping the shack temperature cool at all times, the decision was made to run the Elecraft K3 into an Expert 1.5K amp dialed back to 550 watts.  The additional heat created by running 1,300 watts was not worth attempting a mere 4-db (I.e. barely noticeable) increase in signal.  As it turns out, the NX6T/WQ6X call is often easily heard in Europe; their frustration is that we can't hear them back.  No amount of power increase fixes that; taking the noise level from S-8 down to S-3 is what we need.


While it was easy to find Europe (just point the Yagi's to 30-degrees), 38-degrees is where
a major source of noise comes from, even tho we are 700 feet above the probable source.

One of the biggest frustrations this year came from non other than Israel,  During greyline periods,
it is not surprising to hear 4X4 and 4Z4 stations; unfortunately, when those stations count (such as during the All Asia GiG), they can't be found.  This weekend they were all over the place, along with RX9 & UA0, "taunting me", yet unworkable for EU contest credit - story of my life. 

As I mentioned earlier, calling CQ was actually a major solution to the QRM problem. 
Looking back, it would seem that once I settled in on a likeable run frequency, a vortex opened
up around that frequency, not only giving plenty of QRM-free room, but also a quiet location to
send QTC messages without any problems.

During the final two hours of the WAE GiG, I could tell we were nearing the end (even without looking at the clock) by the number of nearly-frantic "QTC?" requests coming in as WQ6X called CQ.

Of course, near the end of a WAE GiG, the number
of QTC's remaining to be sent represents a dwindling commodity. 

DJ5MW was the recipient of my final 2 messages before WQ6X finally wrapped things up.
While I was disappointed by the lack of hearable European stations, it could well be said that WQ6X worked every station that was heard.

Even more amazing is how many pileups this West coast station "busted", out-signaling many stations
from the Northeast wall.


Did YOU work the WAE Cw contest?

Is WQ6X in YOUR LoG?

Monday, August 5, 2019

WQ6X runs another Dual-OP NAQP-Cw Contest affair

When it comes to NAQP contest events, it seems like "Back to the Future", all over again
(sung to the tune of Brian Auger's "Back to the Beginning, Again.....").

In preparation from an upcoming "Blast from the Past" blog about NAQP-Cw, I was amused to note that I have participated in the NAQP-Cw GiGs regularly since 2010; before that, I didn't even know
the NAQP existed.

An advantage (and at once an instant disadvantage) is the 12-hour operating time on Saturday - for us on the West Coast, 10am to 10pm in January and 11am to 11pm in August.  With only 12 hours to work with, there is rarely an opportunity for a DO-over; if you miss something (like a band opening or an operating opportunity), you probably missed it,

For this weekend, my proposed operating schedule was to be:
  • 18:00z to 22:00z as WQ6X running from W7AYT's Concord QTH.
  • 22:00z to 24:00z as NX6T STN-1 running remote from Concord.
  • 00:00z to 03:00z as WQ6X to run 20, 40, 80 & 160 from Concord.
  • 03:00z to 06:00z as NX6T again remoting in from the bay area.
The theory behind this is that WQ6X can get OP-time on the high bands in the day and the low bands up to sunset (with its Greyline possibilities).  While that is largely what happened, a few modifications were necessary along the way,

At W7AYT's QTH the antenna configuration (for better or worse) has largely stabilized. 
When the indoor RF Feedback problems are resolved, then all will be well. 



Hard to believe, there are four antennas to choose from at the Concord location:

  1. a Comet CH-250 (radial-less) Vertical.
  2. a Hy-Gain "Long John" 3-element
    10-meter yagi.
  3. The infamous WQ6X Lazy 8JK sloper.
  4. A 1/4-wave Asian Sloper ("aimed" at
    Japan but directional to where I'm not sure).
Indoors @ W7AYT,  a switchbox allows either the onsite Yaesu FT-450D or a cable line to the MFJ 949-E tuner in the other room to select the CH-250 vertical or the Long John yagi.




            Contrast that with the 2 13-mh antenna towers at NX6T

  • Tower #1 - Sporting a multi-element C-31 Yagi for 20, 15 & 10.
  • Tower #2 - Sporting a 3-el Stepp-IR, a 2-el Shorty-40 and two
    Bazooka-style inverted Vee's for 80 & 160 meters.
Because this is strictly a Low Power (LP) contest, it is propagation and effective antenna configurations that make all the difference, along with operating skill; not how BiG your
amplifier Bottles are.

Space-WX conditions are also a contributing factor; something we
largely cannot control, and yet we
must make accommodations for. 

I recall NAQP events where a solar event occurred just before the start
of the contest, making the NAQP event all but impossible.  Then again,
at the bottom of Solar Cycle 24, the likelihood of that actually happening
is slim (famous last words).

As you can see there were no solar storms, and yet, 20 & 40 meters were horribly noisy in the Concord area.  Because of the low SFI (66) the upper bands were forecast as being Poor; which
was largely true.  At one point I got so desperate that I used the MFJ tuner to tune the 10-m yagi
on 15-meters, allowing me to turn it to different locations looking for signals. 

At 19:54z, Ken K0EU called in from Colorado, for the only distant QSO on 15 meters. 
It don't matter how you doit, a QSO point is still a valid point, regardless of the antenna
configuration that made it happen.

In a general sense, NAQP contests are largely a lot of fun.  Possibly for the first time we get to associate a name and QTH with a callsign we've probably heard over and over.  Like Sweepstakes (SS), NAQP is largely a North American affair; unlike Sweepstakes, DX stations are worth 1 QSO point (altho no multiplier credit).  This year many stations were worked on several bands; the "award" going to N6PN who worked me on 15, 20, 40, 80 and yes, even 160 meters.  He evidently missed my CQ on 10-meters; Bummer Dewd.


This NAQP operation from Concord was fun, yet frustrating.  I was unable to make the afternoon operation very productive.  At the East Bay location, there was considerable fading, along with the noise.  I would hear a station calling and by the time I was done sending I could hear that station quickly disappear into the noise.  Frequent repeats were frequently required.

After putting in a productive 2 hours at NX6T (160 QSOs on 40-m) I was relieved at 23:55z. 
The next 2 hours yielded a paltry 16 QSOs for WQ6X - it just wasn't happening.  Finally, at
02:00z things picked up a bit on 20 meters before heading down to 40 to really get something
happening.



By the time it was time for my operating time @ NX6T WQ6X had a whopping 70 QSOs in the log.  Luckily, conditions at NX6T were largely wide open, enough to include a ZL2 caller (off the back of the Shorty-40 beam).  While not spectacular, 80 meters gave up over 100 QSOs overall.

To finish the evening, I opted out of the 05:00z time slot, leaving it to N6NC to wrap things up, giving me one more hour as WQ6X.  During that hour I managed 11, 6 & 2 QSOs (on 40, 80 & 160 meters respectively); enough to end up with 89 QSOs in the log for SCCC Team #2.

When it was all over, it would seem that NX6T made 1,045 QSOs as a Multi-2 operation; just enough for a 1st-place (CA) and 6th-place overall.  While we had a false-start @ 18:00z, that wasn't enough to deny us an overall 1st place - W2FU sealed that one up with 1900 QSOs.

So what about you?

Did YOU play in the NAQP Cw GiG?

Is NX6T or WQ6X in YOUR Log?

Sunday, August 4, 2019

DO You QRL?

When you run radiosport contests do
you QRL?  Do you even KNOW what
the term QRL means?  Do you know
the meaning of "context"?

QRL is an old traffic handling Q-Code essentially asking, "are you busy?", or, "is the frequency busy"?

Of course it should go without stating that before we EVER transmit on a given frequency, we should listen 5 - 10 seconds in case the stations are in a transition between contest exchanges.

Quickly resolving the QRL problem
is so important that when I'm running the N1MM+ contest logger there are two function keys defined for this purpose:

  • Q R L ?
  • Q R L  Q S Y ! !
and, if necessary:
  • Q R L  Q S Y  L I D ! ! !
Essentially, asking "QRL?" is a courtesy step, however there is a pre-requisite step: LISTENING THOROUGHLY First.  After a few seconds you may discover the frequency to be QUITE occupied.
Remember This: If you hear me working a station then there is no reason for a QRL query - the frequency is already occupado - DUH!  If you MUST "QRL?" keep the inquiry Short and Succinct; nothing worse than an IDIOT QRM'ing me with numerous/lengthy QRL queries.


Occasionally a station will move right in on top
off my run frequency; legitimately not hearing me.  When I get that for whatever reason they aren't/won't go away, I take steps to either tweak the IF-shift, or even shift frequency slightly until that station is out of passband hearing, hoping future calling stations will figure it out.

Usually, within a minute or two the move-in station either realizes that I am LOUDer than they are, or, that they simply don't have a clue and move on.  I immediately return to the original run frequency.  I once wrote a brief Blog entry about this phenomenon - [CLICK HERE] to
read that.

Have you ever wondered why I use SPECIFIC run frequencies (Ex: 7.027.27 or 3.535.35 or in RTTY contests, something like 14.089.89)?

On Ssb or Cw, a station may be "accidently" calling CQ on my run frequency.  However in RTTY GiGs, when I receive PERFECT COPY CQ Calls, I KNOW it is NO accident - WAKE UP People!

Remember this: our frequency spectrum is a shared resource to accomplish the most optimum communication exchanges as optimally possible.  To more easily manage that resource, it all
begins with LISTENing First.

Now, here is ANOTHER use of QRL:
Because we share the frequency resource, most radiosport "rulebooks" in one-way-or-another prohibit Single-OP's from making 2 (or more) simultaneous CQ calls; however, if you want to call
CQ & S&P simultaneously, you are free to do so if you can Do-It responsibly and effectively.

If I hear your LOUD CQ Contest call and you don't come back to anyone on your run frequency,
I will send "WQ6X" 3 times.  If STILL no response, I am going to assume you have lost yourself in the SO2-V / SO2-R game.  I will then send "QRL? [pause] QRL? [pause] QRL?".  If STILL no response, the frequency is now mine and I immediately launch a CQ call; often receiving calls from the other stations that the Dingle-Dork left hanging. 

Of course what often happens is that the idiot does NoT listen before transmitting and "blindly"
begins calling CQ contest.  Now, technically he is QRM'ing me.  This is what the F-11 (QRL QSY) function key is for.  Remember: ALWAYS listen before transmitting.

Learning how we hundreds of radio operations can compatibly co-exist over one or two evenings
in one or two radio bands on a given weekend is yet another reason I contend that, more than anything else, properly run, radio sport contest GiGs are truly emergency preparedness exercises.
([CLICK HERE] to read what I originally said about this.)

What about YOU?

Why do You radiosport?

When you Do, do You do the due duty, observing the spirit of QRL?