SS Phone interuption
N3ADL at aol.com
N3ADL at aol.com
Mon Nov 20 18:45:40 EST 1995
ARRL SWEEPSTAKES -- 1995
Call: N3ADL Country: United States
Mode: SSB Category: Single Operator Low Power
BAND QSO QSO PTS SECTIONS
160 0 0 -
80 449 898 -
40 28 56 -
20 259 518 -
15 41 82 -
10 0 0 -
Totals 777 1554 77
Power Output: 100 watts Hours of operation:17
Equipment description: IC-761 Mosley PRO 67B @ 60'
KU3X loaded sloper @ 58'
Club Affiliation: FRANKFORD
Soap Box: Found out that life is too short for QRP (100W)!
1st time I didn't need VE8 for Sweep (needed VE7)
KU3X loaded sloper amazed me! 450 Q's
Had planned on 777 Q's and 77 sections so I stopped to
watch football / hockey and chase Mary around.
See you all from KY3N for ARRL!
>From w6go at netcom.com (Jay O'Brien - W6GO) Tue Nov 21 00:00:46 1995
From: w6go at netcom.com (Jay O'Brien - W6GO) (Jay O'Brien - W6GO)
Date: Mon, 20 Nov 1995 16:00:46 -0800 (PST)
Subject: W6GO PH SS Disqualification
Message-ID: <199511210000.QAA09847 at netcom19.netcom.com>
What happened to W6GO in the phone SS? This sad story is
presented to hopefully prevent it from happening to others.
The W6GO station was configured with two stations and two
networked computers, running CT. We spent some time determining
what the problems were with the serial number contention problem in
CT, and decided to handle it with a gavel which would be handed
between the operators. Only the operator with the gavel would
transmit, and when the gavel was exchanged, the station without the
gavel would wait until a QSO was logged before typing in calls heard
to determine whether or not that call had been previously logged.
We had determined that this would get around the CT problems. We
had a workaround for the "ALT-Gab" function which also screws up
serial numbers in CT.
What never occurred to me was the need to install a fail-safe
logic circuit which would insure that there would never be two
transmitters on the air at the same time. It would have been simple
to do, but it didn't jump out at me as a requirement, based on our
agreement that no one would transmit without possession of the
gavel. Such an interlock was used during the CW SS operation this
year, but that was a one-op one-computer operation with the
interlock built into the switching circuit between two radios which
was not appropriate for the two-computer phone SS operation.
About three hours into the contest, one op was running on 20. The
other op wanted to work Montana on 40. Our communications system
between ops broke down and the op on 40 called and worked the
Montana station. The op on 20 was not able to complete the QSO in
progress, so there was not a serial number contention problem.
Some time later it occurred to me that the Montana situation
could have inadvertantly had two transmitters on the air at the same
time. I stopped the operation and backed up the video tape. We
confirmed that two transmitters had been on the air at the same
time, for a few seconds, thus violating rule 6(C), "The use of two
or more transmitters simultaneously is not allowed". I disqualified
the operation at that time, as I would not have been able to state
that the rules had been followed.
Why video tape? Based on the microscope treatment accorded the
W6GO logs by the ARRL contest desk, I always video tape SS contests
in their entirety, including off time. Each radio is connected into
a different audio channel on the stereo VCR. The video portion
includes the time and proof about who is sitting in what chair, and
the two audio channels contain the actual contest data.
This is what we had to do when N6IG, operating here in the 1990
phone SS, won the continental record. Jim advised the contest branch
that the entire contest was video taped to prove the accuracy of the
log. That was when they stopped subtracting QSOs from the log. So,
I video tape to prove that we are "right". It works both ways,
however. When we are wrong, there is proof.
Contest operations here follow the rules. In the SS that means
ALL of the rules. When we scrubbed the effort, it was suggested
that we start over using another callsign. That would be a clear
violation of rule 6(B), "One operator may not use more than one call
sign from any given location during the contest period". A strict
interpretation of rule 6(B) would disqualify the W6GO operation if
one of my operators used his own callsign on a two meter repeater
during one of his off times! I think we should have been able to
chuck the logged QSOs and start over with another callsign. Not so.
Next time (if there is one, my ops certainly have every right to
fault me for not installing an interlock), we will again follow ALL
of the rules, including rule 2(C) which says "Operate no more than
24 of the 30 hours".
This was a very discouraging weekend, considering all of the
effort put into preparation by many for weeks, including the repair
of the 75 meter relay on the 153' high KLM rotary dipole which was
done by a rigger starting at 6am Saturday. My ops have accepted my
apology, but I'm still kicking myself for not imposing an electronic
Don't fall into this trap. If there is a way to prevent an
inadvertant rule violation through electronic means, DO IT. The
rules don't allow for "good faith effort". They leave no room for
w6go at netcom.com
More information about the CQ-Contest