[CQ-Contest] Logging question

Eric Rosenberg ericrosenberg.dc at gmail.com
Sat Aug 8 22:58:17 EDT 2015

With all due respect to K9YC, my experience as an incoming QSL bureau 
sorter tells a somewhat different story. During the three years I've 
been a sorter, almost 400 "3Q" have received cards. The average number 
of those receiving cards on a regular basis is about 50. The majority of 
those receive up to 5 cards, with a few averaging 20 or more -- mostly 
active contesters and DXers. I feel safe in saying that most of the 
cards that come through me come from Europe, DXpeditions, QSL managers 
and contest operations (the IARU contest generates lots of QSLs). I 
suspect the reason 95% of Jim's cards are from Japan is that the 
majority of his QSOs are with JA's. That scenario simply isn't the case 
here in the east, although I don't keep track of the origin of the 
cards. I don't send out cards on more than quarterly basis unless asked 
to do so, and can't say how long the end-to-end process actually takes. 
I'd be curious to know how long it takes from when a DX station sends 
his card to his outgoing bureau; when it's sent out, when it gets to the 
ARRL or individual incoming call area bureau (some of the IARU societies 
send directly to the individual call area incoming bureaus, others send 
all of their cards to the ARRL who then forwards to the individual 
incoming bureaus). Yes, the bureau process is slow, but inexpensive 
(averaging $0.10 per incoming card). It was never intended to compete 
with direct QSLing or LoTW. I suspect most use all three methods and 
choose the one most appropriate to fill a specific need. Personally, I 
like getting cards. I'll pay for those I want (need?) directly, and use 
the bureau for the rest. I use LoTW, too. If someone sends me a cards, I 
feel obliged to return one to them. I don't think the various methods 
compete. My "customers" (for lack of a better description) seem very 
appreciative of the volunteer service we sorters provide. To each their 
own... 73, Eric W3DQ W3 "Q" incoming bureau sorter -----------------------  From Jim Brown<k9yc at audiosystemsgroup.com>  on Sat, 8 Aug 2015 07:50:58 -0700

On Sat,8/8/2015 12:43 AM, Oliver Dr?se wrote:

> Com'on, then use the ARRL bureau and DX cards will cost you next to nothing! We have a superb QSL bureau system in most of this world's
> countries ... Yes, it will not work for all DX

> If you think the Bureau system is "superb" you probably don't use it. The Bureau system is essentially broken. MANY hams do not participate,
> some countries do not have bureaus, and it is VERY VERY slow. Many hams who operate in small countries use QSL managers in countries where
> return postage is $3, and who do not respond to cards sent via the Bureau. I know that because I sent them cards through the Bureau. I
> receive at least 500 cards a year from the Bureau, 95% of them from Japan. On average, those cards are for contacts that are 21 months
> earlier. Thus, a turnaround time of 3 1/2 years. I've sent thousands of cards to the Bureau, with very poor return of the cards I needed for an
> award.
> and yes it depends on your ARRL membership, not a bad thing.
<the rest deleted by W3DQ>

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