Why contest?

WR3O at isd2.tdec.state.tn.us WR3O at isd2.tdec.state.tn.us
Mon Feb 28 15:00:59 EST 1994

The following is an article I wrote for our local DX club newsletter.
I know most of you are hard-core experienced contesters, and might
consider this a waste of bandwidth.  However, I suspect that I am not
the only beginner here, and will post it anyway :-).

Contesting.  The word probably evokes some kind of feeling in every
amateur. Be fore I started DX'ing, I thought contests were nothing
more than a nuisance.  I complained about this ridiculous aspect of
the hobby, and never even stopped to wonder what the fuss was all about.
I'd see the articles in QST & CQ about contest rules and contest results,
and usually just skip over them.  Nothing there to interest me, I
figured.  Later on in my ham career, I got into DX'ing.  Contests, in
particular -- DX contests, suddenly started to have a new meaning to me.
I quickly learned that DX contests were a great opportunity to work a
lot of countries and band countries in a short period of time.  I started
to pay attention to the dates for the CQ WW and ARRL DX contests, because
I knew these would provide some great opportunities to increase my country
totals.  I was grateful that all these "contesters" went to such lengths
to activate places and hand out as many QSO's as possible, but I still had
no idea why they would want to do such a thing.  This contesting thing
still made no sense to me.  Then a funny thing happened. I subscribed to
the National Contest Journal (NCJ) and started to read  it.   I started to
read the CQ-CONTEST reflector on the Internet.  Before I knew what was
happening, I wanted to actually try really operating a contest to see what
it was like.  The timing was right -- the CQ WW CW 160 meter  contest was
right around the corner.  My favorite band and favorite mode combined!
Plus, a single band effort sounded like a good way to get my 'feet wet'
with contesting - fewer decisions to make, etc.  I had participated in
the 160 meter CW contests for a few years, but had never actually tried
a full effort or calculated any kind of score.  This time I was going to
give it a real effort.  With lots of help & consulting from a local
contester (thanks Billy), I was set up to try computer logging and
computer generated CW. OK, I was ready to jump in and see what kind of
score I could make from super-station WR3O  (500 watts and an inverted Vee
at 85 feet).  Well, I learned many things.  The most amazing thing I
learned was that contesting is SERIOUS FUN!  It was exciting, exhausting,
exhilarating, frustrating, thrilling, at times boring (Sunday morning)
but most of all  Major FUN!  I learned a lot about my station and it's
limitations on Top Band.  I learned a lot about my station's layout and
efficiency.  It motivated me to make several changes at WR3O -- some
simple and quick, others will take more time and effort.  I am just
beginning to scratch the surface, but I can tell that contests are an
incredible opportunity to  learn a great deal about a lot of things.
One thing is for sure - the word 'contesting' has a whole new meaning
to me now.  I am beginning to understand what the fuss is all about.
Jump in there and give it a try!  You have nothing to lose and possibly
a great deal to gain.  I look forward to working you in the next contest!

73, Kirk  WR3O   ( WR3O at isd2.tdec.state.tn.us )

>From Jim Reisert AD1C  28-Feb-1994 1630 <reisert at wrksys.enet.dec.com>  Mon Feb 28 21:26:32 1994
From: Jim Reisert AD1C  28-Feb-1994 1630 <reisert at wrksys.enet.dec.com> (Jim Reisert AD1C 28-Feb-1994 1630)
Date: Mon, 28 Feb 94 16:26:32 EST
Subject: new files at CT-USER, and pointer to ARRL.CTY file
Message-ID: <9402282126.AA27543 at us1rmc.bb.dec.com>

I have added a couple of files to the CT-USER file archive.  They are:

	cqp1.dat - this is a file you can use for the California QSO
	           party, if you are outside California.  It replaces
		   cqp.dat (source:  CT BBS).

	multi.cfg - this is a sample file to give station "names" in
		   a multi-computer setup.  So instead of typing ALT-G
		   and seeing:

			From 1:  you're doing really well!

		   You can have it say something like:

			From mult: you're doing really well!

		Ken sent this file to me privately, it should be part
		of the CT distribution, but is not available on the BBS.

Also, if you don't have an ARRL.CTY file dated 10 February 1994, you can
obtain the latest one by sending this message to MajorDomo at mlo.dec.com:

	get ct-user arrl.cty

I may update ARRL.CTY later this week if I get a chance, but there's nothing
that's going to increase anyone's score, and no one complained about the
file for CW.

73 - Jim AD1C

>From Jim Reisert AD1C  28-Feb-1994 1656 <reisert at wrksys.enet.dec.com>  Mon Feb 28 21:52:45 1994
From: Jim Reisert AD1C  28-Feb-1994 1656 <reisert at wrksys.enet.dec.com> (Jim Reisert AD1C 28-Feb-1994 1656)
Date: Mon, 28 Feb 94 16:52:45 EST
Subject: Mid-USA reporting freq
Message-ID: <9402282152.AA29922 at us1rmc.bb.dec.com>

I would like to see three regional "dumping grounds" for scores.  3830 works
well for the East coast, how about a volunteer in the midwest (W9 or W0) and
West coast? Must have Internet access, so we can all see the scores in a
timely fashion.  Also should decide on a frequency - what about 3820 and

Can we get the ball rolling before 0000Z on March 7? Probably not.  But it's
something nice to think about before next fall.

- Jim AD1C

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