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Re: Topband: ARRL 160M Test Comments

To: <>, <>, <>
Subject: Re: Topband: ARRL 160M Test Comments
From: "Jeff Blaine" <>
Date: Wed, 7 Dec 2011 20:15:43 -0600
List-post: <">>
>From a rookie and micro-pistol perspective, I don't understand the 
>sit-this-out thought process.

The flavour of the comments seems to be distilled as - the rules make it so we 
(west coast) cannot realistically win - so we may as 
well not come and play.  Huh?

There are a lot of contests that favour by geography the east coast.  Yet are 
strongly participated in by the west.  And a guy 
operating from the right part of PJ or VE land has a HUGE geographic advantage 
to guys a few miles over the border, depending on the 

Out here in the middle of the country, in the RF dead zone, I don't have much 
DX at my fingertips although the fantastic ears of 
FM5CD did manage to hear me Saturday.  And having antennas in the functional, 
but otherwise pathetic category, I've got zero chance 
of winning this or any other 160m contest.

Despite this, I do have a hell of a lot of fun participating though.  And hope 
that my KS QSO was of help to some guy who may have a 
shot.  Good for them.

It did seem to me that the 6-land stations who were on last weekend were 
popular guys indeed.  A lot more in demand than KS.

One side effect of the lack of west participants seems to be pile ups on the 
ones that do participate.  Sort of like the one WMA guy 
who had 'em stacked up a mile deep and 2 Khz wide.  While a 6 won't win this 
contest, I don't know how many would be sending 
unanswered CQs.

73, Jeff ACØC

-----Original Message----- 
From: Jim Brown
Sent: Wednesday, December 07, 2011 7:59 PM
To: ;
Subject: Re: Topband: ARRL 160M Test Comments

On 12/7/2011 1:50 PM, wrote:
> A contact is a contact in ARRL 160M - and I work everything I can hear and
> then some (almost ESP sometimes).

But some contacts are worth a lot more than others, and some of us have
a lot more mults available to us than others, for equivalent effort.
Here in CA, with really good antennas and high power, the best I can
hope for from the Pacific basin is JA (5,000 miles), HL (5,500 miles),
VK one mult for an entire continent that's larger than EU (6,000-8,000
miles), ZL (6,000 miles), UA0, one mult for a country larger than EU
(4,000-5,500 miles), KH6 and KL7 (2,000 miles), and a few islands, all
in the 4,000 -6,000 mile range. With good conditions, that's ten mults.
EU from here is REALLY tough, and I haven't even HEARD EU this season.
AF isn't quite as tough, but I haven't heard them either. The Caribbean
can be tough from here too -- roughly twice the distance as from most of
the east coast.

As if that weren't enough, there is a MUCH higher population density
within 500 miles of most east coast stations as compared to out here,
which gives you guys a LOT more little pistols to work.

The result of all of this tilt in the scoring to favor the east coast
causes most serious west coast contesters to sit out contests like this
one. I've entered high power for for ARRL 160 contests, have a decent
antenna farm for both RX and TX, and have won SCV each time, but only
because the serious guys who could kill me like K6RB, K6XX, N6TV, N3ZZ,
don't want to be bothered with anything more than a few hours; the guys
at W6YX haven't even bothered to put up serious 160M antennas. Indeed, I
only did it myself for those four years to pick up states and countries.
Since then, I've run Low Power for a year, then QRP this year. In about
4.5 hours I had worked everyone who could hear me -- 87 Qs in 24
sections, and I quit.  Best DX was KH6 to the west, everything east as
far as CO and NM, but WI and MN were the only ones east of there. WA,
VE7, CO, and NM are 800 miles, and that was my limit. BUT -- how many Qs
could I have made with a much less capable antenna farm with 5 watts
from W3?

So THAT'S why you don't hear much from the west coast during 160M
contests. The Boring club has shown one far better way to score a
contest with their Stew Perry, and there are other possible ways to do
it. And until those who dominate the rule-making process accept the need
to make changes, we're going to continue to sit it out.

73, Jim K9YC
UR RST IS ... ... ..9 QSB QSB - hw? BK 

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

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