Radio W4KAZ

Thanks for stopping by the virtual KazShack. Feel free to comment - I often approve them.

2010 ARRL DX SSB @ N1LN- Not Too Shabby

The weekend over at the N1LN/N1YXU was a lot of fun, as always.  Somewhat bleary eyed at the end, but that is to be expected.

The results…..2629 QSO’s, 435 mults, score of 3,417,795.

The propagation was not what we hoped for, and conditions were not close to what we enjoyed for ARRL DX CW only a couple of weeks ago. Not a shock, and probably the only disappointing aspect of the event for me.

We laid plans to open up on 40m and 80m.  In hindsight, that was probably not the best choice, but it sure made sense at the time.  40m was decent at the beginning, but 80m wasn’t there yet, and as the lead-off op on 80m I was too slow to react to the actual conditions.  Live and Learn.

The low bands were tough sledding all weekend.  40m was the money band in the first 24 hours, then 20m took over the lead role.  It was extremely difficult to find and hold runs all weekend.  15m was fair on Saturday, not too good on Sunday. We worked JA’s on both 15m and 20m late Saturday afternoon, not many on Sunday.  The conditions Sunday were maybe even a little worse than those we enjoyed for CQWW in October 2009.

Some of the QSO’s were interesting.  Beaming Europe in the local morning, just after 1200z, I worked an HS0.  Not just once, but one each on both Saturday and Sunday mornings.  That had to have been  long path propagation, because the short path was at enough of an angle off the beam to be in a null.  Both stations had easily workable signals, no QSB on either.  The stations that did call be on 80m at the start of the contest were all solid copy, showing that the band was indeed open at the time.  Just nobody S&P’ing down there early in the contest.  40m produced a solid string of QSO’s in the hours following the EU sunrise.  Probably just indicative of a lot of casual ops having some fun after a good night’s rest.

While going up and down the bands, I was hearing relatively few US stations calling.  That made it more likely you could end up stacked on top of another station calling.  Curious results ensue….

In his soapbox, N1LN describes some of the conditions from his own POV.  I would need to agree about the QRM.  20m was a real zoo.  I’m sure there were many stations calling that I could not hear through the heavy QRM.  Many stations were stacked in layers calling CQ, and it was difficult to find a place in the bedlam.  Stations would then park as little as 700hz up and start calling.

A real zoo.  I just gotta start working on increasing the CW skills.  At least I can be prepared – just in case propagation never really recovers.

The Good:

  • Worked some interesting Q’s.
  • Learning when to move the antennas
  • Always fun chatting with the crew during the down times.
  • Duke spanked UNC in the weekend’s basketball game of interest.

The Bad:

  • Overstaying my welcome when the plan to open on 80m drew few callers.  Should have moved to 15m to round up what was available before it disappeared.  As discovered on Sunday when 15m never really came back.
  • Poor 15m conditions on Sunday.  Better on Saturday(but only fair).
  • Poor conditions overall, but better than last year.

The Ugly:

  • QRM levels worst I have experienced.  That’s not a lot of experience, but it still seemed pretty darn difficult.  That must be what the EU ops deal on a  regular basis.  I now have a lot more sympathy for the guys who can’t pull out my call from home when operating with 100w.

The Audio(source unknown):


3830 Summary:

 Band  QSOs  Mults
  160:   74    43
   80:  193    71
   40:  622    98
   20: 1064   104
   15:  589   100
   10:   87    19
Total: 2629   435  Total Score = 3,417,795

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>