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[3830] VY1DX (K6LA, op) CW NAQP results and story

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Subject: [3830] VY1DX (K6LA, op) CW NAQP results and story
From: Ken Widelitz" <widelitz@gte.net (Ken Widelitz)
Date: Mon, 9 Aug 1999 18:54:07 -0700
                         NCJ NORTH AMERICAN QSO PARTY

     Call used: VY1DX                                          Location: YT

     Category: Single Op All Band         Mode: CW              Power: 150W

     Callsign of Operator:      Exchanged Information: VY1DX KEN YT

      Hours of Operation: 09:16

     band      QSOs      points
    160          1           1       1
      80          1           1       1
      40         19          19       6
      20        229         229      54
      15         23          23      14
      10          1           1       1

     TOTAL      274         274      77      SCORE: 21,098


 Here's my story, its sad but true...It's about Murphy, not Runaround Sue...

After a terrific two weeks vacationing in KL7 with the XYL (saw a big big
bear up way way too close, caught a 100 pound halibut, 18 pound salmon,
hiked and mushed sled dogs on a glacier, got dumped from a kayak into a
freezing river, etc.) we parted ways at the Juneau airport, she heading home
to pick up the kids from camp and me going to Whitehorse.

 J., VY1JA, picked me up at the airport and we headed over to the Yukon ARA
club station, where J. had spent much of the afternoon fixing antennas for
me. I set about setting up for the contest. The YARA computer had a monitor
that would have made me seasick and the A: drive didn't work and NA wasn't
on the computer and there was no keying interface, so I pulled out my
Thinkpad and parallel keying interface, but it wouldn't key the Yaesu Xcvr.
So I tried the other parallel interface and it didn't work so I tried the
serial interface and it didn't work. Uh oh! Here I bring a computer and
three keying interfaces and none of them work. I also needed a stereo plug
for the Yaesu key jack and a mini to phone plug for my headset. YARA had two
headsets with the plugs cut off sitting on the desk. Hmmm. Hey J., how late
is Radio Shack open up here? 9 pm. OK its 8:45 pm. So we get to RS just
before it closes and I get what I need. Still can't get the keying interface

So we drive to J.'s place and it doesn't work on his Omni, but the interface
does work with J.'s computer. Anyone know why the Thinkpad isn't like an old
386 in terms of parallel and serial ports? I booted up in DOS. Also, J. is
putting his station back together with help from the contesting community
and just got a telephone pole up for some antennas.

Anyway, J. loaned me his computer and van. I get to the hotel about 1:30 am
and there is no a/c and there is a heat spell in Whitehorse and it must be
90 F in the room, but there is a fan. I'm up at 7:30 am and heading up Green
Mountain to the club QTH, which is shared with the shooting club. Never had
gunshot QRM before. Everything is hooked up and working by 9:30 am for an
11:00 am local start.

The first QSO is with WL7KY and I'm off to the races on 20, but no one is
hearing me. I'm calling guys who are LOUD, by they CQ in my face. A 21 first
hour is not my idea of fun. I take a break and work with J. on putting up a
160 dipole. I'm back on at 19:30 and make 14 QSOs the next 1/2 hour. Then I
hear KH6ND on 15 meters and turn the TH6 to the west, only he gets weaker,
so I turn back to the east and he gets louder, so then J. and I realize the
rotor control box is 180 degrees out of line. When I point the antenna in
the right direction, I'm up to a 36 in the third hour. Still not my idea of
fun. To make a long story short, it never got better. The rig is running so
hot I try a cold six pack heat sink. It didn't help.

I try 40 and the rig freezes key down. I drop to 5 watts and it keys.

Here is the highlight of the contest. About 0200 J. calls me on 20 and I
work him on 6 bands. The VY1 mult on 6 bands!!! Anyone done that before in
NAQP in August? I tell J. the rig has a problem on 40 and he drives back
with the Omni. (J. is a prince, its about a 1/2 hour ride from his place to
the club QTH.) The Omni does the same thing. J. grounds the computer and the
problem goes away.

Turns out VY1JA was my only contact on 10, 80 and 160. I couldn't get
anything going on 40, everyone was CQing in my face on 80 and the only thing
I heard on 160 was  the local 610 AM station on 1830. I through in the towel
with 45 minutes left to go and quit.

73, Ken, K6LA (Ken Six Los Angeles)

I, by virtue of my statement below, have taken part in the

           NCJ NORTH AMERICAN QSO PARTY on 08/07/1999

     conscientiously applying my most ethical interpretation of the
     published rules for this contest.

     Date_________ Signature_____________________________ Call____________

     Name: Ken Widelitz                    Call: K6LA
           10519 Lauriston Ave.
           Los Angeles

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