Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Another one - P29CW

I worked the P29CW New Guinea DXPedition last night on 30 and 40 meter CW. Both bands were dead with no signals at all, and a lot of local noise, until after midnight, and then they both opened up nicely. The P29CW crew is running 100w to a wire antenna, so it was especially nice to get them. I think on both bands I happened to find them right when they came up, because they went split right after I worked them.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

What is K4M saying?

I've been listening to K4M from my desk at work (via skype to my rig at home), and I'm hearing the op send some very high-speed CW (I think) interspersed with the normal QSO traffic. It always seems to be at the end of a QSO, and I've only heard it on 20 meters. An example: listen

I isolated just the high-speed part: listen

and slowed it down 4 times: listen

It sounds to me like he said "SD5AE". Huh?

And on 17m today: listen

Just the high-speed part: listen

Slowed down 4 times: listen

That one sounds like "RL-R"


Approaching DXCC

I finally worked K4M (Midway Island DXPedition 2009) today on 40m CW. While logging the entry, I noticed that I'm up to 98 countries worked, including all my old WB8YVI contacts from the 70s. I guess there's something to be said for perseverance!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

KM6I CQP 2009

The weekend of Oct 3-4 was my first-ever California QSO Party, and man, what a blast. I set a couple of personal bests:
  • My first 300+ QSO contest (in 9 hours, for an average rate of almost 35/hr)
  • A new one-hour rate record - 65 contacts
It really helped that it was allowable to work a station once per band/mode combination, so it might be optimistic to assume that I'll be able to equal these in the November Sweepstakes, but hope springs eternal...

I was able to get a few nice runs going, and even managed a run of 7 contacts on 80 meter phone, which I would have never thought possible with 100 watts to a dipole at 60 feet.

Other things:
  • It was really instructive to listen to the real pros like K6XX and N6TV. I'd love to be a fly on the wall of their shack while they're operating.
  • I couldn't believe it when I was running on 20 CW and was called by DL5YM.
  • My best hour wasn't solely running - there was a lot of S&P as well, so I'm apparently getting better at S&Ping quickly.
  • I was only called by 2 dupes the whole contest. I was pretty impressed with the quality of the operators.

Conway Reef

I got Conway Reef (3D20CR) tonight on 40 CW, on the 3rd or 4th call. I really wasn't expecting to hear my callsign come back, since the Desecheo and Glorioso DXPeditions were such busts for me, so I'm pretty excited. Thanks to the good ops on the island for hearing my 100w and dipole!