I've been holding myself out of this latest round of SO2R bashing and
counter bashing simply because I've said it all before. I've become a
bit weary of it all.
W5XD suggests below that it would be difficult to write a rule against
SO2R operation or a rule separating an SO1R category from SO2R.
I certainly would not like to see such a new category, nor would I
to see SO2R banned. If I wanted to see SO2R gone, I could write
the rule myself, and then I'd probably hope that the contest sponsors
(primarily the ARRL and CQ magazine) would heed my suggestion
and incorporate my ideas. Such a rule would be completely pointless
if the attempted rule change were directed at giving the "have not's"
category in which they were protected from domination by the better
equipped station or superior operator. And it would be entirely
unenforceable -- an open invitation for new classes of cheating.
But especially lately it would be blatantly silly for me to write such
rule. Let me suggest pondering the following questions:
1) If WP3R were forced to operate without the benefit of SO2R
capability for the past few years, does anyone on this mailing list
believe that any of these splendid Sweepstakes scores from Puerto
Rico would have been reduced to second place status by this rules
change? I'm impressed with the prowess of the WP3R operation,
but does anyone believe that WP3R wins the SS contest because
of his SO2R prowess?
2) For that matter, if the SO2R capability were deleted by magic
from each of the competitor's arsenal's prior to any major domestic
or DX contest would anyone expect a major shake-up in competitive
Well, I'm going to have to leave the NA Sprint CW out of
consideration here, because there are several operators who use
SO2R to good advantage, perhaps adding upwards of 30-40
contacts to their 4-hour totals through the practice. That's critical
winning. But there's a real major difference in the mechanics of the
Sprint CW that applies here and makes the SO2R capability more
valuable than it is in any other contest (even the Sprint phone),
specifically the QSY rule of the Sprint makes it possible to make
real use of the second rig -- tuning receiver 2 while you're
on rig 1 really works here simply because there's no such thing as
running, no such thing as a "run" frequency or a "run" rig in the
And SO2R will allow you to get up and begin searching for a new
contact about 15% faster than SO1R does in the Sprint.
But at least under the present set of rules those guys who complain
that they can't compete against SO2R operations still have excuses to
present for their low scores. Frankly, I believe that half of the
who post opinions against SO2R or in favor of separating "SO1R"
and "SO2R" categories into separate competitive paths simply don't
understand the mechanics of the operating practice. Perhaps a lot of
them believe that SO2R means calling CQ on two bands at once, or
believe that some operators have an inhuman ability to make use of the
SO2R capability to tune the bands with the two sides of their
brains functioning independently, sending CW with a paddle in each
hand, talking out of two sides of their mouth simultaneously.
Perhaps these guys really believe that SO2R makes a giant
difference in scores, and are unable to reconcile their own lack
of scoring prowess unless they believe in this. If so, they
would find their contest scoring efforts further humiliated in
the absence of SO2R competition.
Don't get me wrong; I believe that SO2R can make a little bit
of a difference for a while in a contest, especially in the CW
And, if I may get back to W5XD's ideas, he's almost on target.
To write a rule against SO2R that allows contest sponsors to divide
the present single operator category into two different groups
would probably either engender new forms of cheating or create
new operating practices that are just as effective as SO2R but
are done with a single receiver. The real power of SO2R is the
ability of an operator to receive on one band while transmitting
an automated message on another band. In an age of technology,
it's impossible to put the frequency agile receiver back into
But, if it were practical to outlaw receiving on one band while
transmitting on another, then the capability could still be designed
into a highly competitive contest station by using two antennas
(and appropriate front-end filters) on each band, with one
transmitter and one receiver. Then, there'd be no second receiver,
no second transmitter, no second radio at all, and an operator
could still tune for new stations on the receiver while the CQ
machine pumps away merrily on the same band. No amount of
"limiting band changes by a single op" could effectively limit the
practice, and the capability of competing at the highest levels in
the SO1R catagory would be limited to stations with double
the number of antennas and towers that are needed for the same
capability in the SO2R category.
----- Original Message -----
From: "W. Wright, W5XD" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Saturday, January 25, 2003 2:19 PM
Subject: RE: [CQ-Contest] So2R--try writing a rule separating SO2R
> In my opinion its time to either shut up or do something. So I'd
like to see
> an advocate of the separate SO2R category post a definition of SO2R
> WRITING to cq-contest.
> Hint: be careful with whether you allow a second RECEIVER into your
> single-radio category else you will accomplish the opposite of what
> trying to do. (That is, if you want to eliminate highly capable
> stations from this category, letting a second receiver into
> let them back into this category--replace all those tranceivers with
> receive-only equivalents and a little hardware switching software
> they are, right back where you didn't want them and even more
> before the rule change.)
> Hint: you're going to have to put dual receive rigs into one
category or the
> other. What rules are you going to use to do that?
> I submit that anyone attempting to write the rules as above ends up
> "category" that nothing more than a joke. In fact, there is even a
> contest that, in my opinion, has done just that (by limiting band
> a single op).
> Wayne, W5XD
> CQ-Contest mailing list