[VHFcontesting] Fwd: VHF Contests Rules Discussion and Proposal

Stephen Hewlett stevehewlett at verizon.net
Tue Mar 17 08:14:15 EDT 2020

N1BUG pretty much sums up my feelings on the subject. Digital is not for me ... I'd rather make the contacts myself using what skills I have rather than watch my computer do it and contributing a mouse click here and there. Most of all, VHF for me is about having fun, especially during contests, and the personal interaction with other ops is how I have fun. Also, the unpredictable nature of VHF propagation adds to the excitement for me.
I missed the January contest due to a death in the family. A couple of weeks later some tree removal guys managed to knock down my aluminum flagpole which I mount VHF antennas on top of ... so for the moment I'm QRT.
73, Steve N4NIV

-----Original Message-----
From: N1BUG <paul at n1bug.com>
To: vhfcontesting at contesting.com
Sent: Tue, Mar 17, 2020 7:14 am
Subject: Re: [VHFcontesting] Fwd: VHF Contests Rules Discussion and Proposal

Just weighing in from FN55. I don't know what the solution is but it 
looks grim from here.

I have been rebuilding my VHF/UHF station over the past few years. 
Contesting was one of the major reasons I came back. [I did not operate 
in January. I had a major health scare the day before the contest, 
wasn't feeling well and needed to focus on my health.]

The last couple of contests I operated were disappointing. With the 
shift toward FT8 and consequently it becoming more difficult to make 
arrangements for running higher bands, the fun factor was diminishing. 
Reading the post-contest comments in January, it looked from the 
sidelines as if things were only getting worse.

Given how things have been going I have tabled all plans for getting on 
903, 1296, and 10G. There is no point being on bands if one cannot get 
QSOs there. Realistically my only chance was contests and making QSY 
arrangements on lower bands. I will be watching to see if things 
improve, but I am skeptical that anything can turn this trend around. I 
do appreciate the thought and time some are putting into the search for 
a solution.

I have nothing against digital per se and I did operate some FT8 in the 
last couple of contests. But I don't find it exciting and it doesn't 
motivate me to be active. For me, it takes away most of the things I 
loved about VHF and up. I have no interest in, and will not operate 
contests if they are to be mainly 6 & 2m digital. It's supposed to be a 
fun hobby. The moment it ceases to be fun, what's the point? That is the 
bottom line.

I honestly don't know what, if anything, would work to turn this 
situation around. I am not a "contester" per se so I don't have that 
mindset. I don't care how things are scored or what the rules are. I 
don't know what would "work" from a contesting perspective. What I care 
about is having fun. I am (or was) an avid VHF/UHF operator who enjoys 
the thrill and challenge. I use contests as an opportunity to make QSOs 
that are ordinarily not available.

Paul N1BUG FN55mf
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