Category Archives: Contests

2017 NAQP RTTY July

Wow, it’s been a while!  I happened been on the radio much as I’ve done some other hobbies, but was active with our club on Field Day and then decided this weekend to get into the July NAQP RTTY contest.

Everything fired up and worked perfectly – power supply, radio, G5RV tuner, hexbeam and G5RV. Updated N1MM+ and got right into the contest when it started. Boy was it slow going for me. Nothing heard on 15m or 10m and 20m was slow going. So slow that after 2.5 hours, I stopped and watched a movie. Got back on the radio after the movie and 20m was a little better. Late in the afternoon 40m started to get some activity and once it was active it was much more productive. Called CQ for a bit and S&P’ed before doing the same on 80m.

Once I hit 200 Qs I decided to stop as I was getting up early to head to the biggest hamfest in the area. It was fun to be back on RTTY and see the callsigns of a lot of regulars.  Worked 34 States and 3 Canadian Provinces.

 Band     QSOs     Pts  Sec
  3.5      37      37   15
    7      97      97   30
   14      66      66   25
Total     200     200   70

            Score : 14,000


2016 CQ WPX RTTY – Map & Stats

I’ve missed a few contests including the ARRL RTTY Roundup, one of my favorites, as I’ve been traveling or unavailable with family commitments. I had just flown back home late Friday after spending a tiring week working very long days out west, but I was looking forward to hearing and sending some diddles.

I updated N1MM+ and the computer, radio & antennas all worked fine. I didn’t spend too much time on Frday since I was pretty tired and logged just 61 Qs before turning things off for the evening.

Saturday morning I got up, grabbed some coffee, and fired things back up. I started on 20m working up and down the band working most any station I could hear. About 1430z I checked 10m and was hearing stations with no noise, easily working every station on the 1st call without any repeats. 10m is the most pleasurable band when it’s open. After 30 minutes I worked everyone I could hear, I switched over 15m and it too was hopping with very little noise. I spent 90 minutes on 15m before switching back to 10m for 1 hour, back to 15m for 1 hour, back to 10m and then off to 20m. Worked a few strong JA stations on 15m between 2215z & 2315z. I switched to focusing on 40m & 80m around 0015z before calling it a night at 0430z. I finished the 2nd day with exactly 400 Qs in the log and hoping 10m would be active and quiet on Sunday morning.

Sunday morning after doing a few things before getting on the air, I fired things back up at 1440z and went straight to 10m that had plenty of stations to work.  Like on Saturday, I spent most of the day switching between 10m & 15m going to 20m when things slowed down a bit.

While on 10m before switching to 15m, I heard HZ1PS in Saudi Arabia and he had a nice pileup. I listened to 2 exchanges to see how Peter was picking up the stations and on the 3rd exchange, I sent my call, waiting for it to quiet down, and sent my call again just once. Peter picked me up and here’s the exchange. I had some QRM at the end of his message but I think I got the overall gist of it.

K2DSL UR 599 488 488 488 QSL K2LL K
 HZ1PS TU 599 426 426 426 426 K2DSL 

In the midst of a pileup, Peter takes the time to send a personal message. After I got the message, I went to tell my wife. 635 Qs and this will be the one I remember!

In the afternoon @ 2033z, I was on 20m and came across a station calling CQ. VK3JA was booming in from Australia and I was pointed in the opposite direction toward Europe. I waited for him to call CQ one more time to make sure I copied it correctly and it printed perfectly. I sent my call once and he immediately came back to me with his exchange. I listed to make sure there wasn’t anyone else who found him before I spotted him. I listed for 1 minute and then the crowd descended upon him.

Same thing happened 30 mins later when I came upon TA7I in Turkey calling CQ and no one coming back to him. I put my call out and again, he came right back to me for a quick exchange. No one else was waiting so I spotted him and waited a minute before he had a pileup to work.

I worked V55V in Namibia on 4 bands – 10m, 15m, 20m & 40m. Great operating from south western Africa!  I worked a total of 634 Qs, 487 unique stations across 68 DXCCs.  Besides V55V, I worked 8 other stations on 4 bands

Here’s a map of the contacts made over the weekend created via ADIF2Map. Click to enlarge:



Here’s the N1MM+ score summary:

 Band    QSOs     Pts   WPX
  3.5      54     120    36
    7     116     352    54
   14     188     444    97
   21     174     459   116
   28     102     289    69
Total     634    1664   372

Score : 619,008

Logs sent in to the contest sponsor, LoTW, eQSL, QRZ, Clublog and 3830.


2015 CQ WW CW Summary with Map

After a pretty relaxing week off for Thanksgiving, it was a fun weekend in the CQ WW CW contest. I operated assisted and as always using low power (100w).

Friday night when the contest started 20m was pretty active with some good DX. I logged China, Antarctica, Ascension Island & Mozambique. 40m was also active with good DX and not too noisy either.  I wrapped up the night with 66 Qs and 45 DXCCs in those Qs.

Saturday I was able to spend a good amount of the day operating with breaks for various errands.  10m had some good activity and much more active on Saturday then Sunday.  15m and 20m were active throughout the day. I’d typically turn the hex beam east, south or west and then switch between 15m & 20m working the stations in that direction.

I heard Korea, a DXCC I hadn’t yet logged/confirmed but I wasn’t able to complete a contact. I ended up on Saturday with 321 Qs with 98 DXCCs worked, 74 DXCCs just on 20m.  Some of the notable entities logged Israel, Madagascar, Easter Island, Guam, Turkey & South Africa.

Sunday I was able to operate in the morning. 10m didn’t have any noticeable activity any time I checked with just 1 or 2 stations logged any time I checked the band. 20m and 15m still had good activity and I was logging stations in DXCCs I had already worked, much more so then Friday and Saturday. But even so, I was able to end up logging 450 Qs in 105 DXCCs when I needed to stop around 1800z/1pm local time to head to a friends 50th birthday party.

I thought I was done for the contest when we left for the party but we ended up back home with about 2 hours left so I got back on the air. I ended up hearing Korea again and got them in the log for an ATNO! Other notables also worked Sunday were Oman & Mariana Island. At the end, I worked 491 Qs and 107 DXCCs across 31 CQ zones. Can’t complain about that!

Here’s a map created with ADIF2MAP (click for a larger image):


Here’s my N1MM+ score summary:

 Band    QSOs     Pts   ZN  DXCC
  3.5       4       4    4     2
    7      88     237   14    43
   14     177     500   29    93
   21     164     473   22    77
   28      58     157   16    39
Total     491    1371   85   254

Score : 464,769

Some of the DXCCs I heard but didn’t work, usually because of large pileups:
Australia, New Zealand, Greenland, Thailand, Indonesia and right at the end India.
Log sent in and uploaded to LoTW, eQSL, Clublog & QRZ.


2015 ARRL SSB Sweepstakes

Like the week before, there were multiple prior commitments made that prevented me from operating much in this years SSB sweepstakes but I got some time in and it was pretty productive.

I was just able to operate Sunday morning into early Sunday afternoon so there wasn’t a lot of 40m activity and no 80m activity. I was surprised to work 76 of the 83 sections missing SC, MS, PAC (Hawaii), SB (one of the California sections), AK,  and 2 Canadian Provinces – NL & QC. Quebec should have been easy if I was able to be on when 80m was active.

While scanning 10m I came across ZD7FT in St Helena Island, so I worked Peter and then went back to the contest.

I had just switched to 20m when I found a VI (Virgin Island) station on, worked it, and then my wife said it was time to leave for an early dinner with friends and then the airport to pick up one of the kids for Thanksgiving break from college.

Not a bad summary from N1MM+ for a few hours on the air:

 Band     QSOs    Pts  Sec
    7      66     132   26
   14      69     138   30
   21      33      66   14
   28      22      44    6
Total     190     380   76

Score : 28,880

Fun time on a Sunday before a week off from work for Thanksgiving.


2015 WAE RTTY Contest

I’m catching up now that I have a few days off work for Thanksgiving break. A couple weeks ago was the very fun WAE RTTY contest which supports a concept called QTCs allowing stations to exchange previous QSO info (10 previous QSOs max) with each European DX station. You can either send or receive the 10 QSOs. I didn’t have a large amount of time to spend in the contest as we had previous commitments planned except for Sat and Sun morning into early afternoon.

Saturday morning I started out on 10m which had some activity and then worked on 15m and 20m. I seem to get sucked into 10m when it’s open. Sunday morning I checked 10m and wasn’t hearing anything so I started out on 15m.

N1MM+ shows the summary broken out in detail (below) but in summing it up a bit more:

241 QSOs + 489 QTCs with 49 DXCCs logged

 Band  Q/QTC  QSOs     Pts  Mlt
   14    QSO    78      78   76
   14   RQTC    99      99    0
   14   SQTC    60      60    0
   21    QSO   118     118   84
   21   RQTC   210     210    0
   21   SQTC    50      50    0
   28    QSO    45      45   48
   28   RQTC    50      50    0
   28   SQTC    20      20    0
Total    All   730     730  208

Score : 151,840

N1MM+ worked flawlessly for me in sending/receiving the QTCs.

Maybe next year, I’ll not have so many prior commitments during the running of this fun contest!


2015 CQ WW RTTY Contest Summary

Catching up with posting on the CQ WW RTTY contest from a couple of weekends back.  Overall, conditions were better then I expected, though 10m was quiet with not much activity for me.

Friday night I was tired after a long week at week. That seems to be a recurring start to big contest posts for me. I need to win the mega millions to retire so I can relax all week. 20m was active, 15m was pretty quiet and 10m had no activity. 40m was active too and the same for 80m though I wasn’t working a lot of Northeast (1 call area) stations. I ended up with 108 Qs which seems to typical with 100 Qs in a RTTY contest in the log for a Friday evening.

On Saturday, I had a haircut in the morning and got on around 10:45am ET / 14:45z to find no activity on 10m but good signals on 15m to EU. Easily worked OJ0DX in Market Reef on 20m and later on 15m. I also worked UX5UO who is Gennady and the ham who did my QSL cards. 10m opened up a little before 4pm ET / 20:00z to the Caribbean and South America but it didn’t last too long.

Late on Saturday I was invited to go see Billy Joel at Madison Square Garden so I went off the air not long after I worked the 10m stations. I got home late and got back on to work some stations on 40m & 80m before heading off to bed. Ended up Saturday with 312 Qs which isn’t too bad based on being off for many hours to go to the concert.

I woke up rather late on Sunday and got on 40m to work a bunch of States I hadn’t yet logged. I worked 4U5F and checked them out but it looks like it counts for Italy DXCC. I caught a JA mid morning on 20m who was booming in and the only JA station I worked in the contest.  I spotted OM2015TITANIC but didn’t work them, though I did work K3P which was the Pope special event station.  As usual, wrapped up the contest on 40m & 80m working as many stations as possible to end up with 579 Qs in total.

Of the 579 entries in the log, I logged 455 unique stations. P49X was the only station worked on all 5 bands as Ed is always loud and workable and I logged 3 other stations on 4 different bands.

Here’s a map produced with ADIF2MAP on the contacts made during the contest (click to enlarge):


Here’s my N1MM+ Score Summary:

 Band     QSOs    Pts   ZN  Cty   SP
  3.5      44      57    4    5   22
    7     118     191   11   27   39
   14     242     648   19   65   26
   21     165     450   17   57   10
   28      10      28    5    7    0
Total     579    1374   56  161   97

Score : 431,436

Log was upload to LoTW, eQSL, QRZ, Clublog and sent into the contest sponsor. Detailed contest analysis created via SH5. Thanks for the diddles!


2015 NAQP RTTY July Summary

10m was dead and 15m wasn’t much better. Most daylight time spent on 20m where all the activity seemed to be. Once it started to hit dusk there was activity on 40m. Pretty typical for an NAQP though it would be nice if we could make more Qs on 10 & 15.

Ran 100w (contest max power) and unassisted (no cluster) so all contacts were made spinning the dial or calling me when I was CQing.

Another RTTY contest (DMC) was going on but it didn’t seem to cause much confusion as most DX stations were in the DMC contest while US & Canadian stations were in the NAQP contest.

I had woken up around 4am and didn’t fall back to sleep which caused me to start dozing off near the end of the contest. I could have spent 1 more hour operating but at 11:30pm ET / 0330z I called it quits and went to bed.

SH5 Contest Summary doesn’t show a huge amount of info for a NA focused contest but shows rates, bands and a few other items.

N1MM+ score summary:

Band     QSOs    Pts  Sec   Mt2
  3.5      33     33   15    0
    7     114    114   34    1
   14     151    151   34    2
   21      29     29   10    0
Total     327    327   93    3

Score : 31,392


2015 IARU HF Contest Summary

Saturday was a 24 hour HF contest where anyone can work anyone else on either phone (SSB) or CW. I decided to just operate CW and I operated assisted using the DX spotting cluster.

Most activity was on 20m (75% of my QSOs) and very little on 10m and not much on 15m when I was on the air and checking. The only real pileup I heard was for 5H3EE, a Tanzania station, but since I’ve worked him a couple times previously I didn’t spend much time in the pileup. There was also an E51 South Cook Island station but I wasn’t able to pick him up.

I spent about 10 hours from my first contact to my last, but I wasn’t operating straight through. I didn’t work any Japan or other Asia stations and didn’t even notice many being spotted either. Near the end there was a little activity on 40m and not much on 80m but I stopped before everyone in the US might have started to spend time on 80m.

The SH5 reports from processing my log  show 326 QSOs (1 dupe) and 66 DXCCs logged.

My N1MM+ score summary:

 Band    QSOs    Pts  ITU   HQ
  3.5       5      7    2    0
    7      39     53    6    9
   14     240    842   21   36
   21      40     94   10   15
   28       1      1    0    1
Total     325    997   39   61

Score : 99,700

Here’s a map of the contacts created using ADIF2MAP:


All QSOs were uploaded to LoTW, eQSL, Clublog & QRZ as well as sent in for the contest.

Next weekend is the summer run of the NAQP RTTY contest. I hope the bands allow for more activity outside of 20m and I can work a few hundred contacts.


Early summer catch up

Not a lot of radio activity right now but there are some updates.

Two weeks ago was the ARRL VHF contest and my club usually goes up to a mountaintop in NY to operate with a small tower for 6m and another small tower for 2m/220cm/440cm. The weather forecast called for thunderstorms and being on the highest point around with metal antennas and towers isn’t safe so we scrapped operating on Saturday but organized a small group to operate on Sunday.

On Saturday I spent 30 mins on the air operating the DRCG RTTY contest and quickly made 26 contacts.

On Sunday a small group met up where we store the club equipment, loaded up their vehicles and headed up to the operating site. It went well will setting up 4 antennas on a small mast and running 4 radios barefoot. We made 271 VHF contacts in a few hours operating even though we didn’t come across any significant band openings. Made for a good weekend even though it wasn’t a full effort.

This past weekend was Field Day and the weather forecast was for constant and heavy rain as well as overnight thunderstorms, so we reluctantly cancelled the club event. I got on for a short bit on Saturday but conditions were poor and didn’t make too many contacts (~50) and on Sunday I did other things and ended up on the air for a very short time making 7 more contacts for a total of 57 contacts. Operating from home on commercial power I was a 1D station. I did sneak in a quick SSB QSO with a Qatar station who was booming in and participating in the King of Spain contest.

Hopefully conditions will improve and if I don’t head out for the weekend I can work a few RTTY contacts in a contest this holiday weekend.

73 & good DX,

2015 CQ WPX SSB Summary with Map

A bit late but I had a busy week. Last weekend was the CQ WPX SSB contest where the multipliers are the prefix of the callsign worked, and any can work anyone else. I didn’t use the cluster and as I’ve always done, ran low power (100 watts).

Conditions were ok on Friday evening (finished with 84 contacts logged) and good on Saturday with decent activity on 15m with 10m picking up around noon ET.  I stayed on the air much of the day until around 11pm ET. Conditions weren’t great, but they were certainly fine with not a lot of noise on 10m or 15m.

On Saturday I heard 2 station in China (BY) coming in strong but they couldn’t hear me over the west coast stations.   I was hopeful that maybe I could find them again Sunday and log them, but when you read on you’ll see that didn’t happen.  That’s really the only DXCC entity I recall hearing that I didn’t get logged.  I finished Saturday right at 400 QSOs in the log.

On Sunday, the conditions were lousy. I wasn’t hearing anything on 10m and the stations I could hear on 15m I had worked. To quantify how poor the conditions were, I even volunteered to go food shopping with my wife. While I was out food shopping, I got a call from a high school friend that he was having an impromptu get together in a couple hours so I knew where my afternoon and evening were going to be spent. After food shopping and before I left for the party, I worked, and each took some work to get in the log, a whopping 41 contacts over the course of a couple hours. I logged just 41 contacts on Sunday and each was a chore.  I checked with another ham that works with me and he said the conditions were also crummy on Sunday.

In the end it looks like I worked 76 different DXCCs and 300 different WPX prefixes. Of the 441 QSOs logged, there were 344 unique stations worked. Some of the more interesting entities were Georgia,  the ITU HQ in Switzerland, San Andres Island, Israel, Kuwait & Qatar.

Here’s a map of the contacts made using ADIF2MAP (click to enlarge):


Here’s my N1MM+ score summary:

 Band     QSOs   Pts  WPX
  3.5      22     41   12
    7      44     89   28
   14     126    356   82
   21     145    381  105
   28     104    298   73
Total     441   1165  300

Score : 349,500

My log was sent in for the contest and uploaded to LoTW, eQSL, QRZ and Clublog with the score posted to 3830. I have a few weekend commitments coming up so we’ll see what’s the next contest I can put some time into.