Topband: FT-8 vs CW

Doug Turnbull turnbull at
Wed Oct 25 16:26:08 EDT 2017

Dear OMs and YLs,
     I am an engineer thus one who has no right to complain about the
advance in technology.    This hobby must bring in new approaches if it is
to survive.    Many would say it is already doomed and they may sadly be

     Now this is not entirely to my liking but tough.    Just completed
building a Hi-Z eight circle for 160M only but there is not much activity
these days on CW.   Last year it was JT-65 but this year this previous mode
is passé and it is FT9 that is predominating.   I worked JT65 for a short
time and found it interesting but am a CW man.    If there is no CW then I
may be one who just leaves.    

     I well understand people wanting to get on TB and finding that for them
at least the only way they will work Chile from EI is on FT-8.    Let us all
be realistic; DXCC is not nearly as hard to achieve now as it was in 1960
when KN4WQZ first got his license.    We have better radios, the clusters,
advance warning of DX stations via newsletters and such.   There is no
comparison to past difficulties.   Then to top all of this off travel is
relatively inexpensive and DXpeditions are common place.

    I would have been quicker to go digi-modes a few months ago but now it
is becoming an issue for me.    I am not sure that I want this change.   So
perhaps like Carnage's father who was a Damask Weaver I am doomed for the
scrap heap to be supported by my son's paper route in my declining years
after having emigrated from Scotland to the USA.   Technology will not stop
and things will evolve often faster than we goats like.   I am really
disgusted by lack of 160M activity the past month. However whatever is
happening seems to be on FT-8.

     Not so many years in the future I may be confined to a nursing home
(groan - better dead) then remote operation on two meters into a remote
station may be my main enjoyment in life other than reading and hopefully my
spouse.   WSPR fascinates me still but not for DXCC purposes.    DXCC is not
of any real merit these days anyway.    Still imagine you were limited to a
city lot in Dublin; I might sing a different song.

    Peace to all and thank you almighty for having given me a fine hobby for
all these many years.

                    73 Doug EI2CN

PS Written under the duress of two glasses of Chianti.

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