Below is a copy of an email I sent to Mr Hollingsworth after the posting on
the ARRL web site of the letter sent by Mr Hollingsworth to K3NM and the
proposal of making the ARRL band plan a rule.
>>>"Rick Bullon" <firstname.lastname@example.org> 12/03/01 10:55PM >>>
I am sure that you have received many many emails on this subject and I
have read the FCC's position on band plans particularly in the 160 meter
The fact remains that the band plans are voluntary and as I see it can not
be enforced by the FCC. I also concede the fact that the FCC can and should
be involved in case of intentional interference, but to cite a station for
operating outside the band plan is not fair.
It seems that the FCC has changed the rules without notifying the amateur
community. According to the list of authorized frequencies all modes are
permitted in the whole 160 meter band but if I am operating SSB below 1.843
Mhz and a CW op doesn't like me being there all he has to do is complain to
the FCC and I get a letter for operating with in the rules.
I have monitored the 160 meter band ( I don't currently have an antenna for
that band) and on several occasions I have state side hams operating below
1.843 when a CW op comes on frequency sending a string of dits at a fast
rate. This is intentional interference and most times it is treated as just
ignore them and they will go away. If it gets real bad an op can null out
the CW signal using DSP. What I have heard is the CW op finally comes on
frequency telling the SSB ops that they are in the CW part of the band and
they have to move now!
Now the SSB stations having broken any rules they have a right to be there
but if the CW op complains to the FCC who hears from your office?
The guys running SSB below 1.843! When it was the CW op who broke the rules
by QRMing the SSB stations. It seems that whoever yells foul first wins.
Has your office ever issued a complaint letter to a CW op that was qrming a
SSB QSO operating below 1.843?
When I get my station up on 160 I will operate where I have privileges from
1.800 to 2.000 in any mode. If I am asked to move I will but if the guy
follows me up the band you will hear about his intentional interference.
Will you cite him for interfering with me or cite me for being outside the
voluntary band plan?
The reply from Mr Hollingsworth is below
No one got cited. We just look for a good reason when someone is causing
interference and is not following the band plan. To the extent band Plans
work, there will be pressure to make rules. Rules would just make it worse.
So it seems that if a SSB station doesn't interfere with a CW or any other
station then they can operate below 1843 with no fear from the FCC, but I
would bet the CW guys will scream foul!
>From: "Joe Subich, K4IK" <email@example.com>
>To: <K5NZ@aol.com>, <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>Subject: RE: [CQ-Contest] B-Low 1.835?
>The ARRL bandplan calls for keeping SSB above 1843, not 1835.
>The US stations don't belong below 1843 on SSB. Unfortunately,
>there have been several well known contest US contest ops
>flouting the bandplan.
>Perhaps Riley will issue some more enforcement notices (like
>those of September 12, 2001) for SSB operations below 1843.
>Based on those actions, it seems that bandplans are enforceable.
> ... Joe, K4IK
> On Behalf Of K5NZ@aol.com
>Sent: Saturday, February 23, 2002 11:33 AM
>Subject: [CQ-Contest] B-Low 1.835?
>Ok guys, what is the final word on operating SSB below 1.835? I played
>around to give out a few Q's last night and found several stations CQ'ing
>below the window? Is this a gentlemens agreement or the law?
>"If it's worth doing....it's worth overdoing!"
>Mike Hance K5NZ
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