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Re: [CQ-Contest] WRTC Qualifying & RDXC

To: "Charles Harpole" <hs0zcw@gmail.com>, <w2lc@twcny.rr.com>
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] WRTC Qualifying & RDXC
From: "JIM NEIGER" <n6tj@sbcglobal.net>
Date: Thu, 11 Dec 2014 12:41:03 -0800
List-post: <cq-contest@contesting.com">mailto:cq-contest@contesting.com>
As I approach my 76th birthday and in my 61st year of ham radio and contesting - I often reflect on what has made my life, and ham radio in general and contesting in particular, meaningful, interesting, disappointing, profound, and fun. And over the course of these personal reflections - I've acquired a list of what I call the Axioms of Life. Some are useful; some are outright banal and trite. But one I've observed to be true more often than not:

The Top Never Pulls the Bottom Up; The Bottom Always Drags the Top Down

Like Charly and others opine - the essence of ham radio contesting has morphed into another hobby in which the Internet appears to be the center hub. For those who use it, love it, couldn't/wouldn't live or operate without it: enjoy.

Many words and opinions have been conveyed here, so no sense repeating the obvious. Many defenses to what I might loosely label Internet/Radio Contesting rationalize that it's an advancement of technology, and if you use a memory keyer, or a computer, or didn't build your radio yourself, you then must also sign up to all advancements in technology. Or not.

Some like to learn and operate the code; some do not. Some take pride in finding their own DX; some obviously couldn't care less. The score, the ease of moving it upwards is all that appears to matter. And that's OK. I guess.

But to rationalize it to be SERIOUS radio contesting really does, I believe, a dis-service to the traditions and memories and the legacies of our friends and great contesting operators of the past, that REALLY made our hobby what it is. Or was.... Gentlemen that I idolized, and later was privileged to know, when I started in 1954 - like W6AM, KH6IJ, W4KFC, ZD8J, W9IOP. Too many, of today's stalwart Internet Operators didn't have the privilege to listen to Vic Clark run Sweepstakes on CW. Or Nosey KH6IJ telling us on SSB: "I know MY call; I want to know yours" Or W6AM busting the pileups with his rhombics. Or ZD8J winning CQ WW CW in back to back years with a BUG !!

Operator SKILL used to be what mattered most in contesting. Today, it appears to be something else. And I think those who want to declare themselves some kind of "winners" through their Internet prowess have really missed the boat. But everyone today appears to be entrenched in their way, and no one is going to change any minds about anything.

I just did 48 hours straight in WW SSB and 46 of 48 in WW CW. Did I win the world? Nope. Did I qualify for the next WRTC? Doubtful. Did I use the Internet? Nope. And it was fun.

And in my heart of hearts, I like to think my friends above: Don, Nosey, Vic, John, and Larry would've been proud.

Vy 73,

Jim Neiger  N6TJ

-----Original Message----- From: Charles Harpole
Sent: Wednesday, December 10, 2014 4:15 PM
To: w2lc@twcny.rr.com
Cc: CQ-Contest Reflector
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] WRTC Qualifying & RDXC

Yes W2LC, the movement to station automation lately is the evolution of
real ham radio into another hobby, related but different.  When some hams
lost the joy of discovery and happenstance...the essence of ham radio...
they turned the corner into another hobby which unfortunately intrudes on
the essence and destroys it by intermixing the two.

Of course, we few can still practice real ham radio and try to cope with
the new hobby tuning in, but it is still a sad happening to see a real
human joy slowly disappear.  Bye bye, Charly

On Thu, Dec 11, 2014 at 1:19 AM, <w2lc@twcny.rr.com> wrote:

I don't operate assisted. Why? I'm not interested in RBN, skimmer,
internet spots, etc. Those are cute technologies but of no interest to me.
I do single-op, mostly one radio, and I balance running with S&P. That's
why I dislike the non-IDers, I actually S&P.

For WRTC NA2 you must join several multi's if you wish to place near the
top of the standings. Strictly going single-op won't get you there without
a Herculean effort.

And if I did go assisted what would I get?

An internet connection that is unreliable and fails on a daily basis.
Those of you in EU (and you too Randy, and I'm sorry for picking on you,
well ... a little bit), please understand that there are many areas of the
US that do not have reliable internet. I am in one of those locations, and
I am not that far out into the countryside. FIOS? yep they have called me,
but when they hear where I am, in relation to their service, they say
"never mind".

I probably will not have truely reliable internet at home in my lifetime.
Why? Not enough customers in my area to make it economically profitable
the internet provider. I am the next to last house on the cable. I'm not
sure what the next house does. No big deal, that is just the way it is. I
don't use spots anyway. And the only reason TW ran the cable this far out
(for a relatively small number of customers) is because one of the town
board members lives next door, otherwise I guess would have to use my cell
phone. Ooops my cell service is marginal too, scratch that, but ok for my
limited use.

The plus side for my locaton is the noise level, I am fortunate to have a
nearly zero noise level. I would rather have that, than better internet
service any day.

As for RDXC, I am disqualified even before the start: (kind of, I

11.11 Logs for high scores claiming to be in the top 3 list of any contest
category (p 3, 3.3) must indicate the frequency of every QSO made (CAT
system use) with a minimum resolution of 1 kHz.

11.11.1 An applicant will not be awarded any of the final "Top 3" places
of any category unless exact frequency of every QSO made is indicated.

So I cannot use RDXC for WRTC qualifying at least not if I place well,
I'll be DQ'ed for not having exact frequencies in my log ("will not be
awarded" = "DQ", right?). Didn't someone say that not having exact
frequencies makes you a cheater? No it doesn't.

I use analog radios, remember those? And they don't have a CAT interface
so I cannot comply with the frequency rule, unless I manually record
frequencies. Not gonna do that. I like the radios I am using, they work
very well. No lectures on older radios please.

Therefore a question for the RDXC contest committee, why would I operate
your contest when, if I place in the top 3, I will be DQ'ed? Not awarded

I figure to get into the 21st century I need to spend aboout $50,000 USD.
2 new radios, 2 new power amplifiers (a couple of those EU 3500W units
ought to do it, I'll run them conservatively), another tower or two,
mono-banders, and a house in the Hamptons. A lot of money for maybe a few
hundred more QSO's.

Maybe, just maybe 2015 will bring a new radio, but which one? I've heard
so many bad comments on all of the major radio brands, it is difficult to

73 Scott W2LC

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