Topband: tx5k ops

Herb Schoenbohm herbs at
Thu Mar 7 10:47:21 EST 2013

Some of the TX5K operators are indeed the best, especially on 160 being 
able to dig out so many Europeans in the past nights and even 4Z1 last 
night.  Yet there are a few operators that defy logic like on 75 meters 
this morning who showed up on 3.785 at 11:00Z where I was waiting for 
him with excited anticipation of finally  being able to add Clipperton 
on 75 SSB. TX5K was 20 over and I immediately got a reply "KV4FZ are you 
a one?"  Then after a short lecture the operator proceeded by numbers 
starting with "1".  Unfortunately by the time the operator got to number 
group "four"  he had dropped into the noise and was impossible to work 
him.  Do I have a legitimate beef?  I sure think so.

Observation: A good DX-pedition with experienced operators never goes by 
the numbers!

My point here is that the best DX-pedition could have operators that are 
not knowledgeable and do not realize that propagation does not go by 
numbers. In so many cases with Pacific island rare operations the also 
may rely on the wrong information like using the gray line software that 
shows the opening possibilities to the East Coast as a time to move from 
80 to 160 meters.  There are some very active DX-ers in the Eastern 
Caribbean at 64 degrees West longitude that end up in total daylight 
when that change is made. St. Croix at point Udall near my house is the 
furthest eastern point of the U.S. North  America...the sun will not 
reach the East Coast U.S. for nearly and hour.

So in short there are good reasons for taking along seasoned TB and Low 
band operators on these Macro-Dx-peditions who know at what time the 
paths exist.  Their skills and abilities are renowned and remembered for 
years after the QSL card is put in a drawer.  These are never ops who 
feel required to ever use some sort of "by the numbers"' scheme. Such a 
process seems always to be counter productive as the numbers roll call 
runs right through a nice path opening where you are totally precluded 
from even having a chance to get in the log  Chances to work someone on 
the low bands at time have openings measured in minutes and seconds to 
some parts of the world.

No I am not whining about this operation as had another op been behind 
the mic on 75 SSB he might have realized that by the time I get down to 
the "number four"  group the Virgin islands will be in full day light 
and will not have a chance. Some experienced ops know and sense this and 
also know that a "1" could be in Alaska and a "5" could be in Rhode 
Island.  In the case this morning the operator when finished with the 
"5":group just jumped to "8" leaving 6's and 7's, who might been waiting 
for over an hour,  to sit on their hands.

Number groups make no sense at all and defy logic and real time 
propagation.  Numbers have nothing to do with either location or 
propagation.  My question does my friend Allan 8P6AH/W4 get three bites 
from the apple or should I sign KP2/KV4FZ to get double the time at it?  
Again my pont is that this rolling the numbers game really irks me and I 
hope other might agree. In short a numbers routine is a horrible way to 
waste an opening and not a sign of a season operator who can handle a 
pile up properly.


Herb Schoenbohm, KV4FZ

On Mar 6, 2013, at 6:58 PM, N7DF wrote:
>> Those guys are great  I just worked them on 160 with only 1 watt output!
>> Now I am going to try with 100 milliwatts
>> _________________
>> Topband Reflector
> _________________

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