Topband: Dirty Harry and the DX window
rimradio at direcway.com
Sun Dec 11 14:42:15 EST 2005
> IMO, during contests :
>- split operation should be avoided. It is only warranted when the
>pileup/chaos gets uncontrolable.
>- working 1up 'inside' the DX-window, is of course nogo at all times.
>- listening outside the DX-window 'per default' would create more confusion
>than benefit (S&P stations will lose time figuring out which station the
>pileup is clg)
I tend to agree with Eric, and here are a few thoughts why.
I'm fairly new to 160m but I've been DXing for over 30 years. It seems
that everyone monitors the DX window during a contest and pileups build
quickly and heavily. My observations are that stations in the 160m
pileups send their calls more slowly and often send them several times
due to the typically lower S/N ratios. The average QSO rate for a
station not running split is often very slow because such conditions
cause a lot of stepping on the DX and don't support crisp exchanges.
The window rarely supports more than a handful of DX stations at a time
because of all the clutter, but if the DX were to listen outside the
window it could probably support five times as many of them or more. My
rig's filters can distinguish between stations a couple hundred Hz
apart, but they are useless when the pileup is a half KHz wide and
calling nonstop. I often S&P, and I would much rather tune through the
DX window and listen for where the DX is QRG knowing that I have a
better chance of making the contact, both because of the higher rates
and because I'd actually be able to hear if he came back to me. While
activity during a 160m contest is high, compared with the other bands
there are more "open" frequencies for the DX to work split and the
benefits of doing so seem greater. As it is now, it isn't any more
efficient to work DX within the window than out of it ... maybe even
Working split is usually a last resort because of the impression that it
wastes QSO space, but QSO rates in a pileup only have to double to
compensate. And if more DX fit in the window as a result, the factor
is even less.
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