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To: 3830@contesting.com, jhfitzpa@wisc.edu
Subject: [3830] ARRLDX CW J7DX M/M HP
From: webform@b4h.net
Reply-to: jhfitzpa@wisc.edu
Date: Sat, 23 Feb 2008 12:44:09 -0800
List-post: <3830@contesting.com">mailto:3830@contesting.com>
                    ARRL DX Contest, CW

Call: J7DX
Operator(s): N4PN, NF4A, W9IU, WN9O, WI9WI
Station: J7DX

Class: M/M HP
Operating Time (hrs): 48

 Band  QSOs  Mults
  160:  500    51
   80:  934    54
   40: 1917    59
   20: 2094    60
   15: 1609    57
   10:    8     2
Total: 7062   295  Total Score = 5,995,638



This was our third consecutive year as a M/M in ARRL DX CW from the island
Commonwealth of Dominica. This year the ops were Paul N4PN, Charlie NF4A, Don
W9IU, Kevin WN9O, and Jim WI9WI.

We all started from our homes in Florida, Georgia, Indiana and Wisconsin on
Saturday or Sunday the weekend before the test and met Monday morning in the
airport at San Juan for our 1300 flight to J7. We arrived more or less on time
and picked up our bags plus the  shipment of heavy items including our amps
which had been sent by air freight in advance. This is an entirely field day
type of operation at Sea Cliff Villas in the town of Calibishie on the
northeast coast of the island. Although most of the antennas and coax are
stored on site, there are no towers, all antennas must be erected and taken
down, and all the RF equipment and computers must be shipped in advance or
carried on the flight down. We were met at the airport by our local friend and
contact Lambert Charles, J73LC, and taken with all our gear on the 20 minute
drive to the operating site.

After a quick job of unpacking some things we raised a 40 ft bamboo pole with
40 and 30 meter antennas on it for some casual operation that night. We then
went to the local store to get food and supplies and ate at a local restaurant.
We did little operating that night since we were all tired and had a big day the
next day.

We spent most of the daylight hours and a couple of hours after dark on Tuesday
and Wednesday erecting our antenna farm. This is described below. We did some
casual operation, mostly at night, over the time prior to the contest with our
J7 calls, J79PN, J79PC (NF4A), J79IU, J79KM (WN9O), and J79WI.

On Thursday, the 3 who hadn't been to the island before went on a tour with
Lambert, while Don(IU) and I (WI) did a bit more antenna work, operated some
and napped a bit.

Everything was ready with 4 HP stations and networked computers by Friday. We
started the test on 160 through 20 which died after about 2 hours. We tried to
maintain signals on any open bands and for the most part succeeded. We operated
in 4 hour shifts, and everyone pretty much had a crack at every band at some
point during the contest. At times (evening) we had 4 stations going and in the
mid to late morning only 2 (20 and 15). Other than losing an IC-7000 out of the
box and having issues with the 160 meter inverted L prior to the test there
were no equipment problems or interstation interference issues.

The station:
Position #1: IC-7000, Ameritron 811 amp reholed for 572s by W8JI, 1000 W
             160 m: inverted L with about 15 radials, 500 ft beverage to US
             10 m: 4 element beam on 40 ft bamboo pole
Position #2: IC-7000, Ten Tech Centurion 1000 W
             80 m: phased inverted Ls with about 12 radials each
             15 m: C-3 at 20 ft on push up mast
Position #3: TS-480, ACOM 1010 800 W
             40 m: Phased full wave delta loops designed and executed by K1XX
                   44 ft fiberglass push up masts
Position #4: IC-7000, Ameritron AL-80 600 W
             20 m: 3 element monobander on 30 ft bamboo pole
ICE filters
Networked computers running WinTest 3.19

Our score was less than the last 2 years mainly due to 10 meters never opening
for us. We spent hours monitoring and calling CQ into what was for us a dead
band. We had a few brief moments of spotlight propagation into TX (7 QSOs) and
LA (1 QSO), but that was that. We had less QSOs and mults on 160 and 80, but
more on 40 and 15 than in the past. Strangely our QSO total on 20 was exactly
the same as last year with 1 more mult. I've been there all 3 years and I felt
conditions on 160 and 80 were worse than the past 2 years with more noise and
weaker signals. Conditions on 20 and 40 were excellent, and while 15 opened
later than in the past, with the limited European openings from the States we
had an endless supply of stations to work while it was open.

We got up at sunrise Monday and tore down most of the antennas before N4PN and
NF4A had to leave. We operated some on 17, 30, 80 and 160 (the wire antenna) on
Monday and then tore them down Tuesday morning. The remaining 3 of us left
Tuesday afternoon and everyone got home safely in spite of a few late flights.

We had an excellent team with everyone pitching in on station set up and
dismemberment,and everyone spending some long hours in the chair with little
sleep at times. It is a bit of a challenge to run a M/M with 5 operators.

Our thanks to all who helped, especially Lambert Charles J73LC, Jim and Gwen
Klink, our hosts at Sea Cliff, and DonFord Harper, our tree climber and
handyman extraordinare. Also to George K5KG , and Ron KK9K for advice and
equipment loan, and K1XX for his superbly designed 40 meter array.

Jim WI9WI, J79WI for the J7DX crew

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