[VHFcontesting] Trends in VHF/UHF Weak Signal Operating

John Geiger af5cc at fidmail.com
Sun Feb 9 21:50:46 EST 2014

How about a VUCC challenge like the DXCC challenge, where you add up your 
grid square total from all bands, and publish the top stations every year. 
Maybe make it just 2m and above as some stations could probably top the 
standing just on 6m.

Heck, how about an article in QST about getting on 2m and above aimed at the 
newcomer?  I know I first got interested in 2m SSB from reading an article 
in Worldradio about the Sidewinders on Two club and the things they were 
doing on 2m SSB.

73 John AF5CC
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Les Rayburn" <les at highnoonfilm.com>
To: <vhfcontesting at contesting.com>; <vhf at w6yx.stanford.edu>
Sent: Sunday, February 09, 2014 9:33 PM
Subject: [VHFcontesting] Trends in VHF/UHF Weak Signal Operating

> I've worked in advertising and marketing most of my adult life, so I often 
> tend to view things as marketing problems. In the case of VHF/UHF weak 
> signal operation, I certainly think that is a portion of the problem. When 
> the VUCC Award was created, it resulted in a flurry of activity on the 
> bands, expeditions to rare grids, and other activity. While it wasn't very 
> successful in attracting newcomers to the band, it did give those already 
> active incentive to increase their operations.
> Fast forward almost thirty years, and the situation is reversed. Nearly 
> everyone who wants to earn VUCC has already done so.
> The league has failed to ever make VUCC anything more than the kid sister 
> of DXCC. They've failed to add "variations" of the award such as 5 Band 
> VUCC, or "Rover VUCC" that might encourage more activity. They've failed 
> to offer merchandise in their store to build the VUCC "brand" among hams. 
> Very few articles have been written in QST about the exploits of people 
> trying to earn the award. (Not true in the early days, but certainly now)
> In short, the ARRL has missed the opportunity to make VUCC a desirable 
> accomplishment for most amateurs. And provide no incentive to earn the 
> award on multiple bands, which is key to providing an incentive for 
> operation on 902 and up. I've been trying to find time to author a paper 
> for the VHF Conferences that would formally propose the creation of two 
> new awards:
> Five Band VUCC
> --------------------------------------------
> A special award recognizing any amateur who earned VUCC on five bands or 
> more including satellites. No rules changes, and only minor programming 
> required to have LoTW track the award.
> VUCC Rover
> -----------------------------------------
> An award for any rover who worked the required number of grids for each 
> band, while operating outside their "home" station grid. For example, 
> you'd need to work 100 grids on 6 & 2 while operating outside your home 
> grid. But only five to earn it on 10 GHz.
> The key to making these awards successful would be to really market and 
> promote them, especially in the pages of QST. While I'm not in favor of 
> resetting everyone to zero, the league could offer a special incentive to 
> anyone who works the necessary grids in the coming calendar year. Maybe 
> plaques would be in order. I'm willing to sponsor ten of them, personally.
> This would have the same effect of "resetting to zero" for anyone who 
> wanted the plaques, while still allowing for those who have already earned 
> 5 Band VUCC or Rover VUCC to receive the award.
> While I applaud the efforts that many of us have made as individuals to 
> increase activity, it's hard to imagine real change unless the ARRL gets 
> behind the effort.
> -- 
> --
> 73,
> Les Rayburn, N1LF
> 121 Mayfair Park
> Maylene, AL 35114
> EM63nf
> 6M VUCC #1712
> AMSAT #38965
> Grid Bandits #222
> Southeastern VHF Society
> Central States VHF Society Life Member
> Six Club #2484
> Active on 6 Meters thru 1296, 10GHz & Light
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