Zack Widup w9sz at
Wed Aug 23 09:22:14 EDT 1995

Hi Rick and gang,

	Here is something that was posted on the QRP-L newsgroup. Great 
news for CONTESTERS!!
					73, Zack W9SZ

>There is not much an observatory has to offer ham radio, but
>this is too pertinent to ignore.
>As we all know, we are sitting at dead bottom of the solar cycle ... a
>period of extreme solar "quiet" (minimum) conditions.  From a
>communications standpoint, you plot solar activity (various indexes or
>sunspot counts) to determine when the next cycle begins, but this
>method identifies the next solar cycle months after the fact.
>>From an astronomy and observational standpoint, there are two distinct
>conditions that identify the end of one cycle and the beginning of the
>1. During a solar MINIMUM - sunspots are rare and when they do occur,
>   are located along the sun's equator within +/- 7 degrees.
>2. During a solar MAXIMUM - sunspots become numerous and are located at
>   much higher latitudes on the solar disk, above 30 degrees.
>3. The magnetic polarity of sunspots reverses from one cycle to the next.
>The first sunspot above the equator since early 1994 was observed 
>Saturday, August 12, 1995 at the Big Bear Solar Observatory, operated by 
>Cal Tech.  The sunspot was observed at 21 degrees north latitude and was 
>of OPPOSITE magnetic polarity from all sunspots since 1984 ... identifying 
>the start of the new solar cycle.  
>Thus, the next solar cycle began August 12, 1995, a bit ahead of most
>forecasts. This suggests that improved HF propagation could be evident
>as early as next spring and summer, depending upon the rate of increase
>in solar activity.
>You heard it here first ... from the world's largest radio telescope
>in Socorro, NM (humbly referred to as the *center of the universe*).
>Good DX, Paul NA5N
>----NATIONAL RADIO ASTRONOMY OBSERVATORY ----- Socorro, New Mexico -----
>| VLA - Very Large Array Observatory - Worlds largest radio telescope  |
>|VLBA - Very Long Baseline Array     - even larger                     |
>--------(pharden at --- (73 de NA5N) --------------------

>From barry at (Barry Kutner)  Wed Aug 23 13:51:16 1995
From: barry at (Barry Kutner) (Barry Kutner)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 95 12:51:16 GMT
Subject: K5ZD cover tour
Message-ID: <64BaaD1w165w at>

Randy - Tnx for the tour! Maybe CQ would consider devoting half a page to 
the "cover girl" in the future with similar tours... (What say AR?)


Barry N. Kutner, W2UP       Internet: barry at
Newtown, PA                 Packet Radio: W2UP @ WB3JOE.#EPA.PA.USA.NA
                            Packet Cluster: W2UP >WB2R (FRC)

>From David Robbins KY1H <robbins at>  Wed Aug 23 15:28:49 1995
From: David Robbins KY1H <robbins at> (David Robbins KY1H)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 95 10:28:49 EDT
Subject: new spot cycle
Message-ID: <199508231425.KAA11348 at>

i wish i had the references handy, but if memory serves me right there is 
a short period (6months??) near the transition between cycles where there
is a mix of sunspot polarities.  so just seeing the first spot of the new
cycle polarity doesn't mean we have reached the statistical bottom of the
transition.  the latest forecasts i have seen still have the bottom
predicted for 1q96, but of course they won't know for sure for 13 months
or so after that.

73, Dave KY1H  Robbins at

>From biss at (Robert Biss)  Wed Aug 23 10:39:43 1995
From: biss at (Robert Biss) (Robert Biss)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 1995 09:39:43 +0000
Subject: K5ZD CQ Cover
Message-ID: <Q03B2FA0 at washer.NIST.GOV>

X-Sun-Data-Type: text
X-Sun-Data-Description: text
X-Sun-Data-Name: text
X-Sun-Content-Lines: 12
X-Sun-Content-Length: 410

Congrats Randy!  I think you did a heck of a job inspite of all the ribbing 
that you took beforehand.

You would think that with all that a magazine has invested in a good cover 
they would include a page or so of text.

i will say that Gary/WB4FLB did respond to my querry last week regarding 
cover photo info to me directly.

Thanks again and maybe more will follow suit.

73's bob  K3ZNV

>From De Syam <syam at>  Wed Aug 23 15:59:17 1995
From: De Syam <syam at> (De Syam)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 1995 10:59:17 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re New Radios
Message-ID: <Pine.SUN.3.91.950823103911.645J-100000 at>

On Tue, 22 Aug 1995, Tyler Stewart wrote:

> K3ZO does OK with his 830, but he's been missing a lot of band openings
> lately.

Actually I haven't missed that many band openings, but I did miss the 
fact that 15 meters was open to Asia at the beginning of one contest and 
that did hurt because it never opened to Asia again during the entire 
contest period.  It was however, a perverse way of proving that I don't 
cheat on packet!

> That can be related to two things: lack of a second radio and/or a radio
> that QSY's FAST!  With 2 radios, you can make up for a lot of ignorance of
> band openings, because there is no excuse not to tune those bands in the off-
> chance something might be happening. 

I get into contests to have fun, and using two radios is not fun for me, 
so I do not and will not use two radios.  Moving people from one band to 
another is not fun for me, so I don't do that either.  I don't believe in 
sacrificing fun for score, and I think I live happier as a result.

Actually my main limitation here has been line noise.  With my SEM QRM 
Eliminator now permanently installed on the auxiliary R4C receiver, I am 
hoping that I may finally have the solution to that problem in hand.  We 
shall see.

A number of my friends, most notably W3ZZ, have been urging me to update 
my equipment for some time.  However, I am pleased with what I have, and 
I am more inclined to believe that those who have come in ahead of me are 
just plain better operators;  that it has nothing to do with the 
equipment I am using.  As I have said, I continue to believe that the 
equipment I am using is one of my contest ADVANTAGES.  This broadband 
receive stuff now on the market is raising peoples' noise floors without 
their even being aware of it.  This can be solved by using bandpass 
filters as Frank, W3LPL, does, but I don't think most people are doing 
this yet.

                                              Very 73,

                                             Fred Laun, K3ZO

>From n4zr at (Pete Smith)  Wed Aug 23 16:15:39 1995
From: n4zr at (Pete Smith) (Pete Smith)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 1995 08:15:39 -0700
Subject: K5ZD CQ Cover
Message-ID: <199508231515.IAA18831 at>

K3ZNV wrote:

>Congrats Randy!  I think you did a heck of a job inspite of all the ribbing 
>that you took beforehand.
>You would think that with all that a magazine has invested in a good cover 
>they would include a page or so of text.
>i will say that Gary/WB4FLB did respond to my querry last week regarding 
>cover photo info to me directly.

Well it may be a bit much to expect of CQ, but why not encourage people to
post explanations like Randy did here on the reflector?

73, Pete Smith N4ZR
n4zr at  *** note new e-mail address ***

No, no, no, that's 59 WEST Virginia.

>From robert <w5robert at blkbox.COM>  Wed Aug 23 16:18:39 1995
From: robert <w5robert at blkbox.COM> (robert)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 1995 10:18:39 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Help Me Improve Contest Skills
Message-ID: <9508231018.aa04162 at blkbox.COM>

> I am looking for an opportunity to join a team effort for the CQWW
> SSB) so I can improve my contest skills. Will go anywhere in USA, but prefer
> If you need another op - please let me know.
ditto for the CQ WW SSB for me.
73 Robert  WB5CRG  w5robert at   

>From aa4lr at (Bill Coleman AA4LR)  Wed Aug 23 16:55:37 1995
From: aa4lr at (Bill Coleman AA4LR) (Bill Coleman AA4LR)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 1995 11:55:37 -0400
Subject: Integrated Rig and PC by Steve Runyon WQ5G
Message-ID: <v01520d00ac60dd427e80@[]>

>>Bill's right, this could be designed and built today!
>Actually, Comer Communications sold a number of these rigs at Dayton this
>year.  Their ISA card for a PC when combined with an appropriate sound card
>is a complete 450 KHz to 30 MHz transceiver.  The software provides an
>emulation of a transceiver front panel under Windows.  While the output is
>only 0.1 mW on transmit it does provide a glimpse of one possible future.  I
>find the controls to be very counter-intuitive but maybe I am becomming an
>old dog.

The only difference between what I was discussing and Comer has
accomplished is the use of the DSP on the sound card. Existing RISC
machines (and possibly high-speed Pentiums), as well as future RISC and P6
desktops certainly have sufficient performance to perform the DSP
operations IN THE HOST CPU.

As far as controls, it would be nice to have a few conventionally-operated
controls, perhaps mounted remotely. A tuning knob would seem a must -
perhaps something like the TenTec remote tuning knob is appropriate.

Another angle to this line of thinking is the possibility of having two or
three such "radio-cards" in the same machine. These radios could
inter-communicate directly, and the audio would be merged (dynamically).
Sorta simplifies problems involving keying only one rig (and keying the
right rig) in two (or three!) radio operation.

Again, thinking along the lines of scalability of such cards, I would hope
that the developers would create an AppleEvent or OLE suite for controlling
the radio. (Or perhaps an OpenDoc part) This way, third parties could
introduce various interfaces for the radio cards (and their associated DSP
sections), or integrate radio control into other packages (logging
software, etc). In fact, a standard suite of such radio events would go a
long way toward allowing innovation in this area.

Food for thought....

Bill Coleman, AA4LR      Mail: aa4lr at
Quote: "The same light shines on vineyards that makes deserts." -- Steve

>From H. Ward Silver" <hwardsil at  Wed Aug 23 18:29:19 1995
From: H. Ward Silver" <hwardsil at (H. Ward Silver)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 1995 10:29:19 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: WA State Salmon Run
Message-ID: <Pine.3.07.9508231019.A16221-c100000 at>

Mark your calendars for the fish-iest contest of them all!  The Washington
State Salmon Run - 23 & 24 September 1995.  There's always room to spawn
one more contest until you're filled to the gills.   No, this isn't a net
operation!  But you'll get hooked just the same!  Go ahead, take the bait
and run...the prizes will lure you limit!

Washington State Salmon Run Rules                     
Contest Period 1600Z Saturday to 2400Z Sunday - September 23 and 24, 1995.  
Single operator entries are limited to 24 hours operation. 

CW or SSB or Mixed Mode
QRP (5 watts), Low Power (200 watts), and Open
Single Operator or Multi-Operator Single-Transmitter

There will be a special competition among Washington State Clubs in the 
Multi-Operator Single-Transmitter category.

RS(T) and County for Washington stations
RS(T) and State, Province, or DXCC Country for outside Washington

2 for SSB, 3 for CW, and 6 for Novice/Technician CW (there is no bonus 
for N/T on SSB) - Novice/Techs will sign /N or /T.
The same station may be worked for QSO points on each band, SSB and CW 
(CW QSOs in CW sub-bands only).  Portables and mobiles may be worked for 
QSO credit in different counties.

For Washington stations:  States, Provinces, DX Countries and WA Counties
For stations outside Washington:  Washington Counties (39)

Each multiplier may be counted only once per mode (ssb and cw) regardless 
of bands.

QSO Points from all bands X total multipliers
QRP (5 watts) Bonus: Multiply score X 3
Low Power (200 watts) Bonus: Multiply total score X 2

Package of Portlock Smoked Salmon supplied by Port Chatham Packing of 
Seattle to highest score in each DX country, and each US call district.

First Place Certificate to highest score in each WA county, highest score 
in each state, and province of Canada, highest score in each DX country.

Special Trophy to highest Washington club score.

Participation Certificate for all logs received.

Mobile Working from the Most WA Counties, and other awards at the 
discretion of the Contest Committee.

USA: 50 QSOs    DX: 25 QSOs    Washington: 100 QSOs


All HF bands, except WARC, with the following suggested frequencies:

  CW: 1805, 3560, 7045, 14060, 21060, 28060
  SSB: 1815, 3925, 7260, 14280, 21380, 28380
  Novice/Tech CW: 3700, 7125, 21150, 28160


   Western Washington DX Club
   P.O. Box 224
   Mercer Island, WA  98040

Logs must be postmarked not later than October 31. Logs must show date 
and time in UTC, stations worked, exchanges sent and received, bands and 
modes used and score claimed.  Dupe sheets (alphabetized list of stations 
contacted) are required for logs of 200 QSOs or more.

Log sheets, summary sheets, and a list of Washington Counties are 
available from the Western Washington DX Club (address above) - a #10 
SASE is requested.

>From David Robbins KY1H <robbins at>  Wed Aug 23 18:46:55 1995
From: David Robbins KY1H <robbins at> (David Robbins KY1H)
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 95 13:46:55 EDT
Subject: new spot cycle
Message-ID: <199508231739.NAA03415 at>

>On Wed, 23 Aug 1995, David Robbins KY1H wrote:
>> is a mix of sunspot polarities.  so just seeing the first spot of the new
>> cycle polarity doesn't mean we have reached the statistical bottom of the
>> transition.
>There is one in every group ;)
>Mark E. Curran, Ph.D.   KI7WX
>Curran at Howard.Genetics.Utah.Edu

yeah, i haven't finished building low band antennas yet, its too early
for the spots to come back!

on another line, someone commented about doing dsp in a host computer.
that is probably not a good idea.  dedicated dsp processors are streamlined
for doing exactly what is needed for dsp, and even a cheap one has a much
better throughput than a general purpose processor like an 80x86 or pentium.
besides, the host will be busy doing all those fancy graphics, tracking
propagation, dynamically optimizing antenna characteristics, and keeping
the operator busy with multi-media summaries of how well the contest is
going compared to operators around the world (normalized for propagation
differences of course).

73, Dave KY1H  Robbins at

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