3V8BB (DL2HBX op.) SOAB/LP Story (7kB)

ann at ifn.ing.tu-bs.de ann at ifn.ing.tu-bs.de
Thu Dec 5 12:08:15 EST 1996

Fellow Contesters,

I'm back home from a great trip to Tunisia. Thanks for all the interest 
and pile-ups! It sure makes me happy getting a QSL with a sticker on it 
saying that the west coast OM (and DXCC honor roller) has been trying to
get 3V for 10 years and that this QSO made the entire contest for him...

      Call: 3V8BB                Country:  Tunisia
      Mode: CW                   Category: Single Operator Low Power


      160      214      640     2.99      6      38
       80      630     1884     2.99     10      49
       40     1233     3689     2.99     22      68
       20     1419     4241     2.99     24      78
       15      808     2410     2.98     22      72
       10      144      420     2.92      9      24
     Totals   4448    13284     2.99     93     329  =>  5,605,848

All QSOs were made using an IC-735, a 3 element tribander at 15m above 
ground, a delta loop for 40m, a G5RV for 80m and a low dipole for the 
top band. From 00:00 UTC to 11:00 UTC on Saturday I also had a wonderful 
40m vertical at the beach but someone must have found it useful for 
fishing etc... The sea front QTH and the hill in the back helped all 
northern directions (EU, USA, JA).

                              Continent Statistics

                     160   80   40   20   15   10  ALL   percent

North America   CW     1   44  248  296  159    0  748    16.8
South America   CW     0    0    2    5    9    1   17     0.4
Europe          CW   213  545  895 1037  595  134 3419    76.6
Asia            CW     0   39   82   76   37    3  237     5.3
Africa          CW     1    3    4    8    7    6   29     0.6
Oceania         CW     0    0    9    3    1    0   13     0.3

Preparations for this trip had been going on since March and in August
I knew that I would definately be going there to face my first real
pile-ups. I had my IC-735 with me, lots of wires, coaxial and other
cables, telescopic fiberglass towers and also a lot of paper that I
had prepared to help me during the contest.

The biggest help were plots of QSOs and Multis vs Time that I had
extracted from the log of the German group that was at 3V8BB one year
ago. I had plotted a second line into the graphics which was the 3V8BB
curve again, but scaled down to the meet the final result of 9X5EE - the 
existing Low Power World Record (1994). The target was to stay above the 
QSO line and the Multi lines that belonged to 9X5EE.

Some other preparations like detailed propagation information were not
of too much use in the heat of the contest.

My strategy was simple: 
Since I did not know what things would be like as DX station, I wanted to 
make as many QSOs as I could on the first day, calling CQ the whole day. 
There would only be few non-three-pointers, so from a QSO point of view I 
would not have to care for certain areas and directions.
Then, at midnight, I wanted to see whether there were enough multiplier 
in the log and if I could keep on CQing.

I got into the contest with four hours of sleep which was quite a lot for
me before such an event.

After the first day I had 2800 QSOs in the log which were almost many as
the German 1995 Multi-Single operation had after 24 hours. But... my
multiplier total was very poor (69 Zones, 235 countries). I had assumed
that I would be called by all the other DX being the only station from
that country but apparently the other stations thought the same way.

After taking a three hours sleep between 01:00 and 04:00 I went for day 2 
trying to find some more multipliers. Being the only station from 3V
helped a lot when arranging skeds but in the end I just reached the
number of multiplier that 9X5EE had two years ago (420). My QSO total is
1000 above the result of 9X5EE so, the final raw score is 30 percent
above 9X5EE's raw score in 1994 which was 4.3M. However you can do even
better from this station...

There was a nice 10m opening to northern Europe on saturday. Got called 
by HS0AC as well but turning the antenna to the east yielded no further 
response from that area.

Only one North American station on 160m (CG1ZZ). I heard some stations
on sunday but could not get through with 100 Watts and a dipole 7m
above the ground.

A highlight was the call from WH6R on 40m Saturday morning on the 
vertical (snif...) for the only zone 31 QSO in the whole contest.
Most satisfying contact was the last QSO at 2359 UTC - 3DA0NX on 40m
for a double mult.

Apologies to all who looked for me in vain around .033 kHz. I often
checked that area to find all frequencies occupied. I could have tried
to call CQ on .033 into the face of the station there, knowing that I
would have good chances to be called by many and to make the other 
station QRT. This has happened to me several time when operating from 
DL, and I hate it! So I often went to the upper band regions and 
sometimes to the very low ones.
I also apologize for my keying during some periods. I had borrowed a
keyer that I was not familiar with (ETM-8) from a friend just two days
before the start of my trip. I had found out that I was already 
surpassing the baggage limits and so, I left my heavy Bencher at home.
The new key in connection with cold fingers during most of the contest
(shack temp around 17 deg and slight problems with fatigue and my blood
circulation) caused some QSD -sri!

On sunday evening I had a sudden loss of concentration and could't get 
anything going for 32 minutes. Finally I got back for less than 90 QSOs
but 9 mults in the last two hours of the contest. I should have slept
more before the event but how can you sleep when you are at 3V8BB...?

On sunday night my left ear went deaf, a state that remained until the
end of my trip. I should have visited my doctor before the contest
because he removed lots of stuff when I was back home...

All in all I made 7500 QSOs with 5200 different stations. QSL is via 
DL2HBX. Please remember that I can only confirm my own QSOs, that is all 
CW QSOs between Nov 21 and Nov 26, 1996! When I came back on Wednesday 
after the contest I already found some direct QSLs in the mail. I hope 
to start QSLing in March at latest and all QSOs will be confirmed 100%.

My sincere thanks go to my family who let me go there, to all the people 
who helped me to prepare this trip, especially DL1BDF and DJ7IK, to
Murphy for not showing up and to the great folks at 3V8BB (Mohamed, 
Ahmed and Lotfi).

73! Uli, DL2HBX

 Ulrich Ann (DL2HBX)                   | Internet: ann at ifn.ing.tu-bs.de
 TU Braunschweig                       |           u.ann at tu-bs.de
    Check out the BCC homepage http://www.uni-erlangen.de./~unrz45/BCC

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