CQ Worldwide DX Contest, SSB
Class: SOAB LP
Operating Time (hrs): 41
Band QSOs Zones Countries
160: 25 6 8
80: 117 12 45
40: 189 17 71
20: 428 25 99
15: 254 20 80
10: 80 12 30
Total: 1094 92 333 Total Score = 1,279,675
Club: Yankee Clipper Contest Club
As usual, it was with great anticipation that CQ WW approached. The SSB test is
sometimes fun, sometime not. This one was more in the â??notâ?? category.
I had done quite a bit of antenna work over the summer. There is now a second
tower at N1UR. Both are at 70 feet. This second tower allows for 40 and 20 to
be pointed in independent directions and get 40 and 15 away from each other. It
also allows for some additional hardware up in the sky.
I was concerned about the forecasts of weather locally as well as the
geomagnetic conditions. With the QTH here in Vermont being at just shy of 45
deg lat, it doesnâ??t take much to be affected. And we wereâ?¦. Despite that,
I was actually 50 Qs ahead of last year on the low bands as I took my first nap
at 08Z. I was encouraged. Then, the unthinkableâ?¦.a power outage at 1115Z,
just as I am trying to run on 20M. It was windy, but nothing like they
predicted (or what would come later in the weekend). After about 30 mins, I
decided that this wasnâ??t going to be a brief one so I set the alarm for
another 90 mins of sleep. Woke up to find the power off STILL. Did another 45
mins sleep and then stayed up until the power finally came back on at 1445Z.
Luckily, it stayed on for the rest of the weekend despite much stronger winds
and constant rain and snow.
Well, missing the best possible 3 hours of the contest, changed my view on the
rest. I felt that the most competitive score was not possible unless
conditions REALLY improved on Sunday for a second shot (as we know, the reverse
actually occurred). So I set out to see how close I could get to last years
score of 1.7 Meg and 1317 Qs. I actually really enjoyed the rest of the
I had the least success running of any contest so far from this QTH (since
2004). I would have brief runs of 5 â?? 10 Qs at a time. Spent 80% of the
time S & P. The low Q count affected my decision as I typically figure that up
to 900 â?? 1000 Qs are workable strictly S & Ping in CQ WW. Since it looked
like I would have a tough time hitting 1200 Qs, if I had 30 rate S & Ping and
no success running (which was frequent), I kept S & Ping. SO2R running was
only possible for maybe 50% of the time I ran (which I did). The rest of the
time was such a slug fest you couldnâ??t risk losing a precious clear spot and
were straining to hear though the QRM anyway.
160 was a real disappointment to the Carib. Seemed like very very few stations
even attempted to go there (if they did you couldnâ??t hear them from here). I
worked one EU station. 160 SSB low power is tough especially with high
absorption like this weekend and 45 deg lat.
80 was okay, considering, my 2 el phased array played pretty well and I was
able to work many EU stations (maybe 50% of those attempted). I only CQâ??ed
near the end and received a few VEs for response (greatly appreciated) and even
a few zero pointers (also graciously accepted).
40 was disappointing. I tried CQing many times. I would have 3 â?? 6
responses over 15 â?? 20 mins (I did that about 5 times). I was typically
between 7150 â?? 7200 listening â??on this frequency and 70xxâ??. I think that
I had as many people call my on frequency as below this time. I felt â??loudâ??
on 40M when calling EU S & Ping but was not productive CQing.
20M was, as usual, a slugfest. But worse this year since, even slugging it
out, I had very low productivity on 20 while CQing. Again, I felt LOUD on 20M
when calling other people (even second and third tier level signals) and
cracked some pretty darned big pile-ups with just a few calls (to EU, AF, and
Indian Ocean). While warming up about an hour before the contest, I had a nice
JA run on 20M with even a BY calling in. Worked a few JAs in the contest on 20M
(all S & P) but never heard any of the Asian zones otherwise. Also never heard
17, 18, 19 anywhere.
15M was frustrating because I knew I missed some of the best opening to EU with
my power outage. I had a few responses on Sunday to CQs to EU but very few.
Almost all of 15M was S & P. South America was chocked full of sigs and easy
calls most of the time. Sounded like a morning EU opening for a while. Worked
a little Pacific but no JA.
10M. I missed the EU opening. My rotating 10M antenna has a problem (not sure
what). All I had was 10M south and there was plenty to work in that direction.
If I heard it, I worked it. Even had about 5 Qs from CQing south (all CX and
All and all, I had fun despite the loss of power at the most critical time and
the 10M antenna problem. Other than that, the station is playing great.
See you all in CQ WW CW!
Towers - 2 - 70 foot 45Gs:
160: inv vee at 70 feet and vertical T with 32 radials
80: 2 el phased array at 65 feet to EU/SW and south Â½ wave sloper
40: 2 el at 80 feet and inverted vee at 60 feet
20: 4/4 (70 and 35 (fixed EU)) and 2 el south at 57 feet
15: 3 el at 80 feet, 5 el at 50 feet south, 8 el at 30 feet EU
10: 3 el south at 50 feet and 5 el at 70 feet (broken)
Beverage: 900 feet NE
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