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An Introduction to QSLing Bud Semon N7CW March 5, 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "An Introduction to QSLing Bud Semon N7CW March 5, 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 An Introduction to QSLing Bud Semon N7CW March 5, 2009

2 2 What is a QSL? Traditionally, a QSL is a postcard verifying the details of a contact. –They have been used almost since the beginning of ham radio

3 3 Why QSL? A QSL is the final proof that the contact took place –Remember WB9VGJs presentation on Chasing Awards? –In order to qualify for almost any award, you must submit QSLs for every contact to the award sponsor

4 4 What Goes on a QSL? Critical Information –Your location –Callsign of the other station –Time (in UTC), date (in UTC), signal report, band, mode –Standard size is 3.5 x 5.5

5 5 What Goes on a QSL? Your Design - Infinite Possibilities! Junior High Print Shop – circa 1966 All the information on one side. It can be mailed like a postcard.

6 6 What Goes on a QSL? Copy a photo from the Internet Use some cheap card stock and Powerpoint Printed at home

7 7 What Goes on a QSL? Use your own photo Some glossy card stock and Microsoft Publisher Printed at home

8 8 What Goes on a QSL? My Current Favorite My photo on one side. Information on the other. Printed by UX5UO in the Ukraine.

9 9 What Goes on a QSL? Photos front and back Printed by UX5UO in the Ukraine.

10 10 How to Trade QSLs Traditional way – via the Post Office –About 20% (or less) of hams will QSL an HF contact –If you really, really want a QSL from someone in the US, include a Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope (SASE) –If its a DX station, include a Self-Addressed Envelope (SAE) and an International Reply Coupon (IRC)

11 11 How to Trade QSLs IRCs –An IRC is worth 1 Airmail stamp in countries that accept them –The Post Office is often behind on pricing – thats why the extra stamps –Most USPS employees have never heard of IRCs and you have to ask for the PostMaster to get them –They must be stamped on the bottom left – otherwise, they will be rejected

12 12 How to Trade QSLs IRCs –Some DX stations will ask for more than 1 IRC –They are trying to cover their postage costs for US hams that dont send IRCs and the cost of QSLs –How badly do you want that QSL?

13 13 How to Trade QSLs Postage –In most countries, the cost of postage has increased dramatically in the past few years –In the old days, a dollar bill (green stamp) would cover the cost - now it takes several dollars –Dont send dollars Its a pain for the DX station to exchange them In some countries, it is illegal to have dollars Postal employees soon learn that hams get dollars and steal the mail

14 14 How to Trade QSLs Postage –In place of IRCs, you can buy stamps from many countries Some DX stations dont like this – it changes their procedures too much –See K3FN at –He also sells overseas airmail envelopes that easily fit inside each other

15 15 How to Trade QSLs QSL Managers –Some DX stations dont want the bother of QSLing, so they have a person that does it for them –Send your QSL to the manager –Same rules apply – SASE, SAE & IRC, etc.

16 16 How to Trade QSLs The (Incoming) Bureau System –Hams are cheap, so we formed clubs that forward and distribute QSLs in bulk –Incoming Bureau for the 7 th Call Area is the Willamette Valley DX Club in Portland, OR –See –If you work DX, you must keep envelopes on file with them

17 17 How to Trade QSLs The (Outgoing) Bureau System –Most countries have an outgoing bureau also –In the US, it is the ARRL –You send them your QSLs, arranged alphabetically, and they forward them to the incoming bureaus around the world –See –The QSL Bureau system is very slow, but really cheap

18 18 How to Trade QSLs Electronic QSLing There are 2 systems available today –ARRLs Logbook of The World (LoTW) See Database only - extremely secure – matches QSOs between stations Since ARRL sponsors many, many awards, LoTW is the electronic QSLing system of choice Most logging programs make the upload process relatively painless Over 200 million QSOs entered

19 19 How to Trade QSLs –eQSL See Virtually no security Allows designing and printing QSLs from the Internet Recently accepted for awards sponsored by CQ Magazine, with enhanced security Not supported by most logging programs About 114 million QSOs entered

20 20 Favorite QSLs Some are really rare locations

21 21 Favorite QSLs Some are places at war

22 22 Favorite QSLs Some are just far away

23 23 Favorite QSLs More far away

24 24 Favorite QSLs Exotic locationsor Doing something cool

25 25 Favorite QSLs Some are for the photos

26 26 Favorite QSLs Photos from friends or Memories The Little Print Shop

27 27 Questions? Bud, N7CW Download this presentation at

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