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Topband: Zero Beat

Subject: Topband: Zero Beat
From: Jim Bennett <>
Date: Sun, 04 Dec 2011 13:30:56 -0800
List-post: <">>
Just my two cents worth on the zero beat issue. My station is one of the little 
guns / squirt guns. I operated in the weekend's contest with a K3/100 into an 
Inverted L with only 25 feet in the vertical plane. When I hear big-signal 
stations calling QRZ or CQ and subsequently get answered by a bazillion 
callers, all zero-beat on the caller's frequency, my tiny signal has very 
little chance of being heard. I can imaging what it must sound like to the 
person running the frequency, to have a bunch of folks call, all on exactly the 
same frequency. So, I, like quite a few others, move off frequency a few Hz, in 
an attempt to differentiate our CW tones from that of the thundering heard. It 
works. I know that If I were running 1,500 watts into a huge antenna array and 
had 15-20 people answer my CQ, all on exactly the same frequency, I'd scream. 
And, look at how DX stations pull out a single signal from a pile-up. When they 
say "Up 5", you'll hear them answer callers anywhere from 4 - 6 KHz up.

Zero beat is great if there aren't a bunch of stations all calling. I can zero 
beat EXACTLY with the push of one button on the K3. I do that when I'm having 
non-contest QSO's, or if I'm in a contest and calling a station who doesn't 
have half of California calling him/her. So, there may very well be a good 
reason why there are those of us out there who do NOT do a zero beat 100% of 
the time…

Just my thoughts

(And, thanks to the folks who were able to copy me this weekend and gave me 
some valuable info on where my signal was or wasn't being heard!)

73, Jim / W6JHB - Folsom, CA

UR RST IS ... ... ..9 QSB QSB - hw? BK

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