[Skimmertalk] Suggestion: remove ++/-- from default CW messages to help RBN/CW Skimmer work better

Bob Wilson, N6TV n6tv at arrl.net
Wed Sep 11 14:21:44 EDT 2013

(Answering a question first posted in the DXLog.net reflector by OE1EMS,
see below).


CW Skimmer uses a pattern file to determine what "looks like" a reasonable
callsign.  On my Windows XP computer it is located in

c:\Documents and Settings\Administrator\Application

but the location varies based on userid and Windows version.

Here are the entries in Patch3CH.lst for E7 prefixes:

+ E73@@
+ E74@@
+ E77@@

So if you signed E77DX instead of E7DX you would be spotted much more
often.  CW Skimmer thinks E7DX is a busted call.  That is why it rarely
spots it.

Bob, N6TV

On Wed, Sep 11, 2013 at 11:03 AM, Braco OE1EMS <oe1ems at emssolutions.at>wrote:

> Hi Bob,
> i am not quite sure about this. I spoke with many people and most of them
> told me exactly same what you wrote here about ++/-- and CW skimmers!
> We at E7DX we noticed very low number of spots in CW contest on RBN
> and started to change our messages.
> Standard msg was like "++++test---- e7dx e7dx"
> Then we added CQ remove ++++ ---- more or less all possible options
> and there was no real success. Nr. Of the spots left in compare to other
> very low!
> In compare when I was operating from OE (OE3K) no matter if +++/--- or CQ
> or what ever
> Number of spots were always ok. So I think there is not much difference
> using ++/-- or not!
> I think it´s E7 pfx which is somehow difficult for CW skimmer
> Maybe somebody have other idea why we have such low nr of spots... please
> let me know!
> I like very much ++/-- option and since we didn’t saw any change according
> the number of
> the spots on RBN we would like to use it in future and as well with (E7)
> DXLog !
> 73s
> Braco
> E7(7)DX OE1EMS
> -----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
> Von: support-bounces at dxlog.net [mailto:support-bounces at dxlog.net] Im
> Auftrag
> von Bob Wilson, N6TV
> Gesendet: Mittwoch, 11. September 2013 19:27
> An: DXLog.net Reflector
> Betreff: [DXLog.net - Support] Suggestion: remove ++/-- from default CW
> messages to help RBN/CW Skimmer work better
> Through post-contest analysis, I have discovered that CW Skimmer and
> SkimSrv, which feed the Reverse Beacon
> Network<http://www.reversebeacon.net>,
> will spot stations *much* more often if they send CW at a *constant speed*.
> If you want to be spotted by these networks more often during contests, do
> *
> not* use "++/--" to speed up and slow down in the middle of messages.
> Of course any DXLog user can easily edit all the .TXT files to change the
> defaults, but I think it would be best if DXLog.net defaulted to *not*using
> ++/-- in any default messages, to help all those who are less aware of this
> issue.  Others who think that it is more important to save a few
> milliseconds than to be spotted often can still use them whenever they
> want.
> Maybe a good compromise would be to leave ++/-- in S&P messages, but not in
> RUN messages (because the RBN posts spots of CQers, but not S&P stations,
> when it is working right).
> 73,
> Bob, N6TV
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