Like everyone else, I have an opinion but, I haven't heard much of where I come
at this. I consider myself a reasonably accomplished SO2R operator but not
expert. I have a very simple home station consisting of wires below 60 feet
and 2, 3 element beams (1 each on 10 and 15 M) at 25 feet using ropes to turn.
I use low power right now.
Behind those very modest antennas, I use a very sophisticated SO2R set up using
a FT1000MP and FT990, with TR log, WX0B ant switch, dunestars, and the
DXDoubler. I am currently sitting 4th on SO LP in CQ WW CW on the 3830
reflector. SO2R is an advantage? Sure, vs. not doing it at all. BUT....I'd
trade it all in heartbeat right now for my FT1000MP (dual receive) and an 80 ft
tower with stacked C31XRs and a 402CD plus a few wires (and I've used plenty of
these setups before and installed them, so I know what I am saying when I make
this choice). Trust me guys, I have the rare advantage of having the
experience of working a great SO2R setup with crappy antennas and working SO1R
with towers. THERE IS NO COMPARISON!!!!! The towers (all else being equal)
and a few good antennas, win out every time. Period, end of discussion.
I personally think there should be fewer catagories (or the same), but not
more. But if we were really to propose a catagory that matters, it would be
antenna restricted (whatever the definition - WPX is a good start but maybe
even more restricted for the deed restricted types). Also, I wouldn't join it,
because I like kicking a few butts knowing they had 100 foot towers and I
didn't. To me, that's part of the fun.
Finally, I have used SO2R on single band contest entries as well, so those
saying that 5 min band change rules are the answer, haven't really thought
things through. I can also, sweep 160M, work 2 mults, and jump back to CQing
on 80M in about 90 secs using 1 radio, so why should I be prevented from doing
so just because someone came up with an arbitrary rule?
SO2R advantage? Yes. The biggest? Not by a long shot. Try height and forward
dB gain and take-off angle for starters.
Ed N1UR (ex PJ2E, 9M6A, C6ARS, K8EP)