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Re: [CQ-Contest] RBN Spots?

To: CQ-Contest@contesting.com, Eric Gruff <egruff@cox.net>
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] RBN Spots?
From: sbloom@acsalaska.net
Date: Mon, 30 May 2016 19:50:32 -0800
List-post: <cq-contest@contesting.com">mailto:cq-contest@contesting.com>
Eric et al:
While not a hard and fast rule ..it generally makes sense to use a cluster in 
your general geographic area.  There are a number of parameters that are 
defaulted by each node owner ...some being "what qualifies as DX" types.  Also 
..and again ..I'm not sure of the specifics, but ...W3LPL's node is connected 
to a skimmer network (probably the same one as RBN) and that node ...in turn 
..posts any skimmer spots from network stations in the U.S. to the DX Cluster.  
He turns that feature off during big contest weekends.  Long way of saying 
..during contests ..the only way you will hit the Cluster ..is if someone 
manually spots you ..and it is considered good manners for those who are 
running assisted to spot, during slow times.  There are a few stations who are 
particularly good about this.  For example, if you work KA6BIM or N7ELL while 
running ...you are almost certain to be spotted on the cluster.  
Steve KL7SB ...not just the President of the Callsign of the Month Club, but 
also a client. 

On Mon, 30 May 2016 18:44:45 -0700, Eric Gruff  wrote:


I was basing my perceived loneliness on the N1MM+ logger info window that
pops up each spot of my station. I presume it's based on the DX cluster that
I selected for use during the contest, which was HB9DRV. Several San Diego
stations (including WN6K and KI6RRN, who are both within 25 miles of me and
also running LP) kept showing up in the Telnet window (I quit counting after
each of them reached 10 by mid-Saturday, and I had exactly one spot by that

I think the difference here is that RBN was clearly picking me up - you and
others have shown me that there was no lack of spots throughout the contest
- but I only had a total of four or five spots that popped up on the Telnet
window for the entire contest. I probably called CQ for at least 10 hours,
if not more. My totals included over 900 Qs and 750k points, so I was really
trying my best. I went back and looked at my run rates when the DX cluster
picked up a spot, and they were twice as high or more than other times. My
CW speed varied between 20 and 26 wpm on CW, so I can't imagine that had
anything to do with not getting more DX spots. 

I'm just whining here, so I hope no one takes any of this too seriously. I
do wonder what happened with the spots, and will continue to look into it,
but I don't want to say anything is broken. It may just be that my operating
practices didn't lend themselves to being spotted. 

Thanks to everyone for the tips and suggestions. It's how we improve, right?


Eric NC6K

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