Presentation on theme: "Summerfest 2004 Austin, Texas Aug 7, 2004 Introduction to DXing and Contesting."— Presentation transcript:
Summerfest 2004 Austin, Texas Aug 7, 2004 Introduction to DXing and Contesting
Big Gun or Little Pistol AB5KAB5K WB ø YEA No matter the caliber, nothing compares to the thrill of tickling somebodys radio on the other side of the world!
What Well Cover - Contesting What kind of ham enters a contest?What kind of ham enters a contest? Whats the object?Whats the object? Getting started in contestingGetting started in contesting The variety of contest typesThe variety of contest types How to win a contestHow to win a contest Online contesting resourcesOnline contesting resources
Getting Started in Contesting Gary Schmidt W5ZL
Contesting Special thanks to Carl K9LA, NCJ Editor Even though you may be just a Pup, you can still have fun contesting with the Big Dawgs!
Why enter a contest? The Casual ContesterThe Casual Contester A desire to just have some fun, improve operating skills, and work new countries, states, counties, etc. from the smorgasbord of participating stations The Feisty ContesterThe Feisty Contester A desire to compete The Committed ContesterThe Committed Contester Able to leap tall buildings with a single bound Able to master the art of sleep deprivation CQ Contest! Ken WM5R in action
Benefits of Contesting Its just FUNIts just FUN –Gets the competitive juices flowing Improves operating skillsImproves operating skills –Excellent preparation for emergency operations An excellent use of our allocated spectrumAn excellent use of our allocated spectrum Remember: Use it or lose it.
Do I Have to Have a Contest Station? Plenty of Big Gun contest stationsPlenty of Big Gun contest stations –Multiple radios –Multiple towers –Serious station automation Also plenty of normal stationsAlso plenty of normal stations You dont have to be a Big Gun to have Big Fun contesting!
How to Win a Contest Work a lot of stationsWork a lot of stations Work as many multipliers as possibleWork as many multipliers as possible Work smartWork smart –Make good band change decisions –Use efficient operating techniques Dont waste time or words (similar to emergency operations)Dont waste time or words (similar to emergency operations) Know when to Run and when to Search & PounceKnow when to Run and when to Search & Pounce Know when to take a breakKnow when to take a break
Many different types – beginner to expert SSB, CW, RTTYSSB, CW, RTTY DXDX ARRLARRL, CQWW, IARU, WPX, foreign hosted, etc. CQWWIARUWPX ARRLCQWWIARUWPX NationalNational Field DayField Day, Sweepstakes, NAQP, VHF/UHF, State QSO Parties, etc. SweepstakesNAQPVHFUHF Field DaySweepstakesNAQPVHFUHF SpecialtySpecialty SprintsSprints, FOC Marathon, SOC, SKN, etc. SOCSKN SprintsSOCSKN
A Contest for All Seasons/Tastes ARRL Field Day ARRL Field Day ARRL SKN ARRL SKN ARRL DX NAQP Sprint CQ WW DX ARRL 160 ARRL 10 State QSO Parties (Many) ARRL VHF CQ WPX CQ WPX IARU HF World Championships IARU HF World Championships ARRL Sweepstakes ARRL Sweepstakes ARRL RTTY ARRL RTTY ARRL UHF Sprint Beginner to Expert TQP NAQP Click on contest for more info ARRL VHF ARRL VHFJan Dec
Multiple categories Single operator Single operator Assisted/unassisted Assisted/unassisted Power Power QRP, low, high QRP, low, high Single band and/or mode (some contests) Single band and/or mode (some contests) Multi-op, single transmitter Multi-op, single transmitter Multi-op, multi-transmitter Multi-op, multi-transmitter... designed to let you compete on a level playing field
When are contests run? Usually on weekends Usually on weekends Starting/ending times vary by contest Starting/ending times vary by contest Durations as short as 4 hours Durations as short as 4 hours As long as 48 hours As long as 48 hours Max operating hours also vary Max operating hours also vary Good on-line contest calendar: Good on-line contest calendar:
Online Contesting Resources ARRLARRL –ARRL Rate Sheet newsletter Contesting.comContesting.com National Contest JournalNational Contest Journal Central Texas DX & Contest ClubCentral Texas DX & Contest Club
Best contests to get your feet wet Field Day Field Day Field Day Field Day Straight Key Night Straight Key Night Straight Key Night Straight Key Night State QSO Parties State QSO Parties Many to choose from Many to choose from Our own (Texas QSO Party every September!) Our own (Texas QSO Party every September!)Texas QSO Party Texas QSO Party
Whats Reqd to Get Started? A radio and antennas A radio and antennas A logging system A logging system Pencil & paper Pencil & paper o Tried and true, but hard to keep track of dupes Computer based logging software Computer based logging software o Many options from freeware to networked DOS-based: TR Log ($60-75) DOS-based: TR Log ($60-75) Windows-based Windows-based N1MM (free) N1MM (free) Writelog (~$75) Writelog (~$75) N3FJP ($39-49) N3FJP ($39-49) o Can even trigger pre-recorded voice, CW, or RTTY exchanges
Advanced Operation: Interfacing Your Radio Serial, USB and Parallel OptionsSerial, USB and Parallel Options Why do it?Why do it? –Logging automation: less work for you = higher QSO rates Date/timeDate/time Freq/modeFreq/mode Contest exchangeContest exchange –Integrated point-and-shoot DX cluster operation –Trigger transmitted exchanges
How do I report my results? OfficiallyOfficially –Snail mail – Cabrillo file generated by most computerized logging programs (may be reqd to be declared a winner)Cabrillo file generated by most computerized logging programs (may be reqd to be declared a winner) UnofficiallyUnofficially –3830 On the airOn the air –At the Club
What Can I Win? Trophies, plaques, certificates Trophies, plaques, certificates Goodies Goodies Example: WA State QSO Party Salmon Run category winners receive smoked salmon Example: WA State QSO Party Salmon Run category winners receive smoked salmonWA State QSO Party Salmon RunWA State QSO Party Salmon Run QSOs toward non-contest awards QSOs toward non-contest awards The awe and respect of your fellow competitors (aka bragging rights) The awe and respect of your fellow competitors (aka bragging rights)
The Texas QSO Party The Texas QSO Party A great place to get started in contesting! And youve come to the right place to learn about it!And youve come to the right place to learn about it!
Created by Gary Schmidt W5ZL Gale Zeiler WB0YEA Susan King K5DU Other Clubs are welcome to use the contents of this presentation with acknowledgement of Central Texas DX and Contest Club Credits