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Collected Wisdom and Lessons Learned for the Little Pistol Dan Zeitlin, K2YWE (K3AU) Revised July 2007 Dan Zeitlin, K2YWE (K3AU) Revised July 2007 Copyright.

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Presentation on theme: "Collected Wisdom and Lessons Learned for the Little Pistol Dan Zeitlin, K2YWE (K3AU) Revised July 2007 Dan Zeitlin, K2YWE (K3AU) Revised July 2007 Copyright."— Presentation transcript:


2 Collected Wisdom and Lessons Learned for the Little Pistol Dan Zeitlin, K2YWE (K3AU) Revised July 2007 Dan Zeitlin, K2YWE (K3AU) Revised July 2007 Copyright 2006, 2007 All rights reserved Dan Zeitlin, Annapolis, MD Free use with prior permission

3 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p2 Acknowledgements Thanks to all those who shared their thoughts with me directly and through review, especially K4ZW, K3ZO, K3RA, K3MM, and KE3Q, and to the many who continue to educate me by example. Thanks to W3LPL and K3RA for awakening my competitive instincts and introducing me to PVRC.

4 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p3 Agenda Whats this about? Who is K2YWE? Elements of Success Preparation Contest Basics (refresher) Strategy Station Considerations Antennas Software Operating Tips and Best Practices SO2R Resources Summary Appendix A – Interfaces and Accessories Appendix B - Best Practices Collection

5 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p4 Whats a Little Pistol? A Little Pistol in this context is Low Power Single Op Modest Antennas ­ Wires, maybe a low Beam ­ NOT big towers and/or stacks

6 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p5 Whats this about? Objective Improved Scores for Little Pistols (LP) Intended Audience Modest low power HF stations Parts may apply to VHF/UHF+ How? Make the most with what you have Adopt successful operating practices

7 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p6 About Dan Licensed in 1956 (KN2YWE) ­ Mostly CW. Mixed rag chewing and DXing Limited casual contest background ­ Occasional FD and Sweepstakes 1996 FD with dyed-in-the-wool contesters ­ Broke the ice. I took the bait. Fell in with a bad crowd. Little part of Big Gun team for a few years ­ Same crowd at W3LPL. Set the hook, reeled me in. Little Pistol home station small low tribander ­ 100W, wire antennas and recently a small low tribander usually K3DI ­ Occasional guest Op elsewhere, usually K3DI CARA/PVRC FD team ­ Primarily 80 CW

8 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p7 Elements of Little Pistol Success The Right Frame of Mind Preparation Practice Attention to Detail Perseverance Learning from Others My observations are relevant to most successful endeavors

9 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p8 The Right Frame of Mind QRL! Dont forget it is a competition it's a jungle out there... de N6TR You will not be alone... contesting skill includes the ability to tolerate high levels of QRM, and if you can't do that, you might as well hang it up.... de K3ZO Think Big If you think and act like youre a big dog, you will convince most of the pack that you are, although you may get bitten once in a while.... de K2YWE Dont forget it is a competition it's a jungle out there... de N6TR You will not be alone... contesting skill includes the ability to tolerate high levels of QRM, and if you can't do that, you might as well hang it up.... de K3ZO Think Big If you think and act like youre a big dog, you will convince most of the pack that you are, although you may get bitten once in a while.... de K2YWE

10 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p9 Preparation Have a strategy – write it down Provides baseline guidance ­ Try to optimize within your constraints ­ Modify as needed in battle Reassess your strategy during the contest ­ Expect to change the details ­ Take radical departures only if you have good reason to, like one or more of your baseline assumptions was wrong Now the general who wins a battle makes many calculations in his temple ere the battle is fought. The general who loses a battle makes but few calculations beforehand.... Sun Tzu

11 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p10 INSERT key seems to stick! Preparation Get your act in order before the performance Check your set-up well before the start ­ Antennas, Hardware, Software, support files ­ Set appropriate software defaults ­ Provide enough time for fixing any problems Be well rested for the contest Listen day(s) before to get a feel for Condx Have a simple means to restart software ­ What did I call this file...? ­ Re-use the same name for the current contest files. Rename after the contest. Skip Next - Contest Basics Jump to Strategy

12 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p11 Rules are published well in advance Valid contacts exchange two-way information ­ Contest rules define the specific information Final score is composed of two pieces ­ QSO points – Based on number of valid contacts Points per contact may vary ­ Multipliers – Based on a unique characteristic Usually location - State, Country, Zone, Grid ­ Total Score is QSO points times the Multipliers Total Score = Q pts x Mults ­ Same stations may provide multiple Qs or Mults Contacts on different bands or modes may each count Contest Basics 31 W6IXB 59 59 SCV 32 W5AFX 59 59 STX 31 W6IXB 59 59 SCV 32 W5AFX 59 59 STX Individual contest rules spell everything out, including scoring Skip Contest Basics Jump to Strategy

13 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p12 Scoring Example Pts/QSO may differ within some contests ­ Might be different by mode, or by local or DX QTH Simple Multi-band contest Skip Contest Basics Jump to Strategy

14 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p13 Sample Exchange (CQ WW HF Contest) CQ TEST PA0LOUPA0LOU calling CQ contest K3AUK3AU responds K3AU 599 15 PA0LOU sends the callsign he is responding to, then exchange of RST and Zone 599 5K3AU sends his exchange TU PA0LOUThanks K3AU and waits for next station to call Results in one Q for each station, and a multiplier if the other stations zone or country has not yet been worked on this band (CQ WW) Stations try to exchange required info as efficiently as possible Skip Contest Basics Jump to Strategy

15 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p14 More Qs are key to producing higher scores ­ Qs and Mults are both important but... Qs fuel the engine, Mults provide the turbo boost Operating Time is fixed, so Rate must go up! Concentrate on achieving Higher Rates Rate Drivers Successful Running is best rate generator ­ Being Heard and Hearing others At fixed power level, this mainly means better Antennas ­ Efficiency - Less wasted time in and between QSOs Look to Operating Practices and Shack Arrangement ­ Attracting the other stations Operating Practices High Level Thoughts... Some reasoning to frame the problem

16 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p15 Strategy Class Selection ­ Band(s), modes, assistance, number of Ops, … ­ Leverage your strengths Bands and Modes ­ Which, when? Propagation ­ Whats best for Qs and Mults ON/OFF times selection ­ Time limits ­ Meals, sleep, real life periods Operation ­ CQ vs. S&P ­ Rates, Speeds and Timing Having a game plan pays off during the contest SOA, MUF, S&P, rates, snacks... Qs, Mults, Bones...

17 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p16 Focus on making the most Qs ­ Block out expected S&P and Run times, ground rules ­ Balance with occasional short checks for Mults Base primarily on expected Propagation ­ Range of prediction tools are available QST or CQ tables – simplest Models – most complex, better Rules of Thumb ­ GeoClock can help real-time, especially on 160m and 80m ­ Temper predictions with your own observations Allow for time-of-day considerations ­ Whats going on elsewhere in the world Strategy Remember that maximizing Qs is primary to success

18 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p17 Choose OFF times at lowest expected Q rates ­ Base on your own or other station history ­ Dont forget minimum OFF time rules Try to ensure using your full time allotment Allow possibility you may want a late slot ­ Dont get caught short of time at the end ­ I usually leave a late half-hour insurance slot ­ Its tricky, considering the bullet above Synch with your personal needs (duhh) ON/OFF Times Make the best use of your time

19 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p18 Set an average rate you want to achieve ­ (Total Qs) / (Operating Hrs) Set minimum rates youll accept ­ Acceptable rate will vary over the contest period Include minimum rates in your Strategy Make a change if you drop below the Rate ­ Change Freq, Band, Mode ­ Swap Running and S&P ­ Chase some Mults ­ Change your shirt Rate Rules Setting Rate Rules helps you achieve QSO goals Change Something !

20 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p19 Be thoroughly familiar with your software ­ A contest is not the time for first trial ­ Gain familiarity in day-to-day use ­ Exploit helpful features ­ Use practice programs and modes ­ Modify settings to suit your style Be comfortable with Run techniques ­ Practice with a simulator ­ Try to operate run style (5NN MD DAN BK... TU) Pick a day with a good conditions on your best band ­ Use the Best Practices mentioned later in this presentation Contest Hound Practices with CT Practice It may not make you perfect, but it will make you better!

21 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p20 Station Improvements Assess Station Strengths and Weaknesses ­ Take band by band inventory based on performance history Attack Weaknesses with biggest payoffs first ­ Incrementally fill in the holes ­ Expect Antennas to rank high ­ Dont forget to pick low hanging fruit Assess your Operating Practices ­ Bounce your operation against the Best Practices (later) ­ Adjust accordingly Improved Antennas & Running payoff most ­ But every improvement counts – they all add up Put method behind your madness

22 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p21 My Experience Operating Practices ­ Better exploited software features (Bandmap, SCP, …) ­ Discovered and incrementally adopted Best Practices ­ Biggest single payoff in Operation was Running Started Running – Had assumed not possible for an LP My running rates improved with experience and trials Station ­ Improved antennas – eventually migrated to monobanders None exotic – Delta loop, bent dipole, and lazy U wires Recent addition of small Yagi made a big difference ­ Made shack changes for better operating efficiency... Performance improved with incremental changes

23 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p22 Better Operating Efficiency Boom Mic & Footswitch Life is Good! Footswitch & Prop Mic Prop No Help! Ugh!

24 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p23 Station Improvements at K2YWE Footswitch ­ Frees hands for undisrupted keyboard use ­ CW - Quick T-R transition without listening to QSK noise Boom Mic ­ Less fatigue, freedom to move, respond to local QRM... Antenna Switching ­ Quick band changes. Replaced connector swaps. Added or Improved Antennas ­ More chance to sustain Run, snag S&P Qs with less calls ­ Make more second tier QSOs uipment Sensible Rearrangement of Equipment ­ More efficient, less effort to operate... Improvements aimed at higher rates

25 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p24 Antenna Improvements What assets exist to hang antennas on? Use all the property lines to full advantage Try to design a system using monobanders Add/change antenna to help your weakest band Consider fixed antenna with gain to EU or West Enable a new band, like 160m ­ for New Mults and more Qs during slow times Put up even a minimal Yagi if possible Be innovative within your constraints

26 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p25 270 ft Horiz LoopTwo 40m DeltasTwo 40m Deltas and 160/80m Vertical(s) vg gd ok ppp vp 160804020151016080402015101608040201510 40m Delta, 80m Dipole,40m Delta, 80m Dipole 160m Lazy-U160m Lazy-U, C3SS vg gd ok pp vp 16080402015101608040201510 Antenna Growth at K2YWE Began with Multi-band loop with uneven performance and a lot of tuning. Made incremental improvements to fix deficiencies Current System with better and more balanced performance

27 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p26 K2YWE Antenna Farmette Squeezed in three wire monobanders and a 12 boom tribander You can sure cram a lot in 1/5th acre, XYL willing! 80m Droopy-End Dipole 125 75 40m Inv Delta 160m U Force 12 C3SS (12 boom 24ft max element) 40m Delta serves as 160-80m Rx only and Aux Ant for 20-15-10m Small tri-bander on a 45 AB-577 rocket launcher

28 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p27 Software (S/W) Use your Radio and Keying interfaces ­ Build or buy and integrate them if you havent already (Appendix A) ­ Its very hard to make and sustain high rates without them Recommended S/W Setup (CT shown) ­ WORKDUPES- BANDMAP Window ­ CORRECT call signs - RATE Window ­ Super Check Partial- SCP Window ­ Stop on auto CQ- SCORE Window Spotting Network? ­ View as a strategic decision ­ Can be a valuable asset, especially in S&P ­ Remember caveats about wasting time chasing Mults ­ Some contests force you into Unlimited category Use a contest-oriented program and set it up to facilitate high rates

29 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p28 My Favorite Software Features Skip All but Bandmap Skip all All Detail- Jump to Best Practics

30 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p29 Dupe Alert (CT screen) Check for duplicate entries is automatic upon callsign entry TI3TLS Alert as DUPE with time & date of previous QSO TI3TLS Skip All but Bandmap

31 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p30 Matches callsign fragments against database created from recent contest logs and current logged contacts... anywhere in the callsign Check Partial Call (CT screen) Call fragments yield possible known contester callsigns Skip All but Bandmap

32 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p31 the Bandmap (CT and N1MM screens shown) Tells you who is on what frequency, if worked before, and if needed as QSO or multiplier Data is entered by hand or automatically from spots Map updates periodically to expunge stale data Own frequency can be centered or scrolled The bandmap saves time in Search & Pounce mode Skip Bandmap Jump to SO2R

33 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p32 the Bandmap - CT 21:24:48 Current Transceiver Frequency Needed Mult in White Needed QSO in Blue Already Worked in Black Frequency Time Entered into Bandmap Call Radio tuned to N4CW No # or on black bar indicates Worked before Going to tune up to K2YWE, a needed QSO Radio tuned to N4CW No # or on black bar indicates Worked before Going to tune up to K2YWE, a needed QSO *

34 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p33 Radio tuned up to K2YWE and blue indicates Needed QSO Intend to work K2YWE Radio tuned up to K2YWE and blue indicates Needed QSO Intend to work K2YWE * the Bandmap - CT 21:25:03 Current Transceiver Frequency Needed Mult in White Frequency Time Entered into Bandmap Call Needed QSO Already Worked in Black

35 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p34 21:25:15 Worked and logged K2YWE Status changed to Worked and time updated Intend to next work WA6AQQ, a needed Mult Worked and logged K2YWE Status changed to Worked and time updated Intend to next work WA6AQQ, a needed Mult the Bandmap - CT Frequency Time Entered into Bandmap Call Updated Time & Status Needed Mult in White Already Worked in Black Current Transceiver Frequency

36 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p35 21:25:38 the Bandmap - CT Radio tuned up to WA6AQQ # and red bar indicates Needed Mult Radio tuned up to WA6AQQ # and red bar indicates Needed Mult Current Transceiver Frequency Call Needed Mult Already Worked in Black Next Needed QSO in Blue Time Entered into Bandmap

37 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p36 Tips and Best Practices Best Practices are what successful competitors say works for them.

38 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p37 Some CW Tips* - CW Do not be intimidated by stations too fast for you to copy. ­ Start with the slower stations higher in the band. ­ Don't worry if you have to hear a call several times to get it. ­ As the contest goes on your will improve! Call CQ high in the band at a speed comfortable for you. Dont be shy about sending QRS. ­ Most stations will slow down to your speed. Try moving frequency a bit if you cant seem to be heard. ­ Often receiver bandwidths in a crowded band are set very narrow. Dont let your code speed keep you from enjoying CW contests *Some tips are courtesy of the 1999 YCC Cookbook

39 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p38 Some Phone Tips Use conventional or unmistakable phonetics ­ Duck Soup are poor phonetics for D S Maintain a friendly sense of urgency in your QSOs ­ Chattiness will slow your rate and lose you contacts. Do not be intimidated by stations talking fast or unintelligibly. ­ Firmly ask until you get all the exchange info. Use again? ­ It is usually better to ask for one piece of missing info at a time. Listen to what is on your frequency when working split. ­ If you can hear it, you can better time your call or defer until later. Apply these basic Phone tips for starters

40 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p39 Every point counts! ­ Theres no such thing as not worthwhile ­ When things are slow, call for anybody A rule of thumb strategy ­ Work bands that may close first. Move with propagation. ­ This often means 10-15-20 in a.m. then 40-80-160 later on. ­ Try running rather than chasing spots when high bands are open. ­ Go after the Mults when 20 has slowed, but 40 hasn't opened yet. Keep multipliers in mind ­ Move Multipliers if you can do so efficiently ­ Have frequencies on each band set up for quick jaunt ­ Balance the effect on rate and total score when chasing Mults Best Practices Basics* - Overall Overall * Some of these tips are courtesy of the 1999 YCC Cookbook

41 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p40 The Master Callsign Data Base is not the Bible Verify the callsign of the station you're working ­ BV6U and 5C8N are not real callsigns (6V6U and HC8N). Don't log them that way. Always HEAR the call that the station is signing and log it correctly. Best Practices Basics* - Overall Overall - continued * Some of these tips are courtesy of the 1999 YCC Cookbook You mean thats a busted call?

42 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p41 fresh meat fresh meat S&P rates can be high early in the contest fo ­ Everyone is for you. quickly hop from ­ You can quickly hop from station to station with little fear of Dupes. safe to call ­ You are usually safe to call first and fill-in the call at the QSO end. Use early S&P to find a spot to CQ ­ You can maintain a high rate while searching for a clear spot. ­ It beats the alternative of establishing a frequency before the Test Be sure to try CQing late in the contest ­ You will be new to many of the stations that have been CQing all along. ­ They will be seeking to squeeze out the last few QSOs. Repeat only what is missing when asked for a fill ­ Repeating known parts wastes time and possible clear spots. QRL?... Best Practices Basics - Overall Overall - continued

43 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p42 Do you really want to ask QRL? Can anyone honestly believe that there is a single KHz anywhere in the relevant portion of the 20 meter band that is NOT in use somewhere in the world during the CQWW?... de K3ZO Pick a clear spot and CQ without QRL? You will only invite others to take the frequency by asking. Youll find out quickly enough if the Freq is in use by calling CQ.

44 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p43 Best Practices General Use K3ZO's "Rule of TWICE" - modify as sensible ­ If you can't get a station after calling TWICE, move on ­ If he doesn't ID after transmitting TWICE, move on Dont waste time repeatedly calling DX that has moderate Sigs when the band is otherwise quiet from their part of the world ­ They are probably opening the band with lots of ERP Enable and use the band map in your logging software Insist on fills until you get all the info. Use Again? on phone Keep the width of an SSB signal in mind ­ Be sure you are away enough from strong stations running not to be covered by a pileup you cant hear

45 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p44 Running Use the widest IF bandwidth you can stand ­ Less chance to miss off-freq callers, especially on CW Dont break a run pulling one station through ­ Your rate will suffer if you take too long ­ You will drive away impatient waiting stations Use only a quick Thanks if stations are waiting ­ They know your call. Dont waste time on it. ­ Throw in your call every few Qs for the uninitiated Send complete exchange with a partial call ­ Nearly all will correct you, good Ops without a missing a beat ­ Fix the call during his transmission more Best Practices...

46 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p45 more Best Practices... Running - continued Call CQ when bands are dead for the day or worked out Call CQ when the band is active if you are able to find a frequency and hold it Always work Dupes ("WORKDUPE" in CT) If you can't drag a station's call through after trying TWICE, ignore him and start calling CQ again. ­ This is part of K3ZO's "Rule of TWICE." Modify "TWICE" to suit your station capabilities and contest circumstances. Enable call sign correction in your software. This will send the corrected call as part of your goodbye message ("CORRECT" in CT)

47 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p46 more Best Practices... Running - continued Speed up if your run is being sustained This is especially true in contests like SS where the exchange includes your call sign. Slow back down appropriately Hit the SEND key as soon as the call is in your head. Finish typing in the log during the automated response or while talking ­ TR can do this automatically after 4 characters Move Multipliers to other bands if you have the time ­ Pick frequencies in advance

48 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p47 more Best Practices... Running - continued If another station calls CQ on your frequency, try "QRL" or "Frequency in use, QSY" Don't engage in extended frequency fights ­ If QRL/QSY fails, it almost always pays to move ­ Sometimes you can move up or down a bit in order to lessen the QRM and still hang on to "your" frequency NEVER NEVER NEVER acknowledge a "jammer". NEVER. Just keep your pace, and don't change your tone of voice on phone or even synchronize your calls to his QRM. ­ Often throwing in a few fake Qs will discourage the jammer The Complete Best Practices Collection Appears in Appendix B The Complete Best Practices Collection Appears in Appendix B

49 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p48 A Word About Single Op 2 Radio Everyone has their own idea of an efficient SO2R layout... K1PT S02R Setup two radios, two computers Special contest switch at DF0WA S02R one computer An earlier two radio setup (no PC)

50 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p49 Its easy for SO2R to be a distraction KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) is key ­ Start with a bone simple independent setup - rigs and logs ­ Use SO2R only when things are slow CQ #1, S&P #2 Alternate CQs Modify your setup operation with experience Many top Ops swear by it (i.e. N6TR) ­ It has potential to add significantly to your score Some dont use it at all (i.e. K3ZO) p.s. Im at stage one - less than five SO2R contacts per contest - dbz SO2R Save SO2R until you have nearly exhausted other improvements

51 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p50 If the IF is being "pumped" by stations nearby (and in the AGC bandpass) trying running with your AGC OFF... de K3RA Noise limiters can cause noise or clicks when pinged by strong adjacent signals. Turn off unless you have no choice. * Miscellaneous Receiver Tricks Hints and Kinks that you may not have considered *On the Yaesu 1000MP, turn the adjustment knob full CCW, even when both NLs are off.

52 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p51 Multi-Op Station Opportunities ­ K3DI in Arnold – Dick Wilder ­ WX3B in Frederick - Jim Nitzburg Help (order not significant!) ­ K3RA – Rol Anders ­ KE3Q – Rich Boyd ­ KD4D – Mark Bailey ­ K2YWE – Dan Zeitlin ­ K3ZO – Fred Laun ­ W3LPL – Frank Donovan ­ ND3F - Brian, VHF+ Single Op Opportunities ­ Often unused stations are available ­ Post a query on the PVRC reflector Local PVRC Resources There is ample opportunity and willing help available locally

53 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p52 Contest Organizations, Calendars, Info, and Sponsors ­ Potomac Valley Radio Club (PVRC) Potomac Valley Radio Club (PVRC) ­ Contesting.Com Contesting.Com ­ Frankford Radio Club (FRC) Frankford Radio Club (FRC) ­ CQ Magazine (CQWW, WPX, and others) CQ Magazine ­ National Contest Journal – NCJ (QSO parties, Sprints, more) National Contest Journal – NCJ ­ ARRL (Sweepstakes, Field Day, DX, UHF/VHF, more) ARRL ­ SM3CER Calendar SM3CER Calendar ­ WA7BNM Calendar WA7BNM Calendar ­ VK4DX VK4DX Contest Logging Programs ­ CT CT ­ NA NA ­ TR Log TR Log ­ Writelog Writelog ­ N1MM N1MM ­ AC6Vs Logger Links* AC6Vs Logger Links Internet Links includes non-contest loggers

54 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p53 Prepare and pay attention to detail Prepare and pay attention to detail ­ Remember Sun Tzu Adopt proven Best Practices Adopt proven Best Practices ­ Dont be afraid to experiment. Keep what works for you. Run, big dog, run Run, big dog, run ­ Try to Run if at all possible Start now making incremental changes Start now making incremental changes ­ Make an improvement list and work it down Strategies are important Strategies are important ­ Pick and plan the contests. Use the plan for guidance. There are lots of resources to help you There are lots of resources to help you ­ Just ask Its not the size of your station, its how you use it! Its not the size of your station, its how you use it! Little Pistols can successfully compete You can do well with a modest station

55 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p54 Interfaces and Accessories Appendix A

56 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p55 Can be from rig or computer. RS-232, parallel, or discretes Switch Relays and Point Rotors Antenna & Rotor TNC or Internet using RS-232 cable or no H/W at all (Telnet, etc) Annunciate and track needed Mults and QSOs Spots Varies with DVP type, but interface itself is not complicated Send CQ and Exchanges with DVP or card Voice Keying Simple interface, usually to parallel port Send CQ, Exchanges, keyboard CW, paddle CW CW Keying Varies from RS-232 cable alone, to simple electronic interfaces Track & control Freq and Mode, maintain Bandmap Radio ComplexityFunctionalityInterface Hardware Interfaces H/W interfaces vary in complexity Plans and parts for home building are readily available

57 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p56 1K 2N2222, 2N2219... 1K 2N2222, 2N2219... P/O LPT1 Typical Parallel Port Keying Interfaces DVP and Band Data discrete outputs are also available on parallel ports. 10K PADDLE A 12 PADDLE B 13 PADDLE CENTER 14 KEYER PADDLE GND 18 STROBE 1 KEY DRIVE 17 Low-level positive PTT to rig. Grounded on PTT keyed. Low-level positive center keying to rig. Grounded on key down. GND 18 STROBE 1 PTT DRIVE 16 0.01uF

58 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p57 Opto-Isolated Interfaces DVP and Band Data discrete outputs are also available on parallel ports. GND 18 STROBE 1 PTT DRIVE 16 Low-level positive PTT to rig. Grounded on PTT keyed. 10K PADDLE A 12 PADDLE B 13 PADDLE CENTER 14 KEYER PADDLE GND 18 STROBE 1 KEY DRIVE 17 P/O LPT1 Low-level positive center keying to rig. Grounded on key down. 1K Replacing transistors with Optos can improve RF immunity 4N25, 4N35, 4N37 … 4N25, 4N35, 4N37 … 0.01uF

59 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p58 Typical Serial Radio Interfaces Many older Rigs, especially Yaesus, need level translation Most newer Rigs only need a simple cable to PCto Transceiver RS-232 to TTL TTL to RS32 +/- 12V RS-232 5v / 0v TTL to PCto Transceiver RS-232 +/- 12V RS-232 +/- 12V RS-232

60 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p59 MAX-232 IC 5V/RS-232 CAT Interface For older Yaesu and other rigs with 5V TTL I/O

61 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p60 Discrete 5V/RS-232 CAT Interface Transistors replace IC as TTL/RS-232 level-shifters

62 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p61 Some inexpensive foot switches The one I use (cheap) $ 8.70 $ 6.95 Best Buys, Baynesville (Balto) and other electronics stores also have inexpensive foot pedals meant for games or music.

63 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p62 Best Practices Collection Appendix B

64 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p63 Best Practices Collection

65 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p64 Best Practices Collection (cond)

66 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p65 Best Practices Collection (cond)

67 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p66 Best Practices Collection (cond) S

68 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p67 Best Practices Collection (cond)

69 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p68 Best Practices Collection (cond)

70 K2YWE Little Pistol 6-2007 - p69 Best Practices Collection (cond) Got More?

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