Saturday, October 30, 2021

First 24 hours of CQWW-SSB

I've only made one contact in the ongoing contest but - Oh, what a day!

The Flex is back from its IC-705-mandated leave-of-absence and is playing well with the new Mercury 3S amp.

My one SSB contact was with Franki OQ5M. Yes, as it turns out, we both have microphones. The QRM on 20m was killer but I now have Franki in the log on that exotic-to-me mode.

But wait - there's more...

Being SSB-averse as I am, I spent a bit of time on 60m FT8 last night. That little session netted ZA/IK2RLM in Albania, HD8R and C5C. Moving to 10m FT8 brought FR4OO, VP8LP and 7Z1WW into my log. The Indian Ocean on 10 meters - my, my.

And a surprise, completely unannounced DXpedition started up today: Ken LA7GIA, is in the Central African Republic operating as TL7M. Got him on 17m CW and 20m FT8.

Ken's primarily a CW op - and he starts his DXpedition during the biggest SSB contest of the year. Gotta love it! A lot of serious DXers/contesters had to make a difficult decision when TL7M popped up on the clusters on CW right in the middle of their phone run.

And best of all - after 4 decades in this hobby and 327 entities worked - I finally worked Monaco. On CW. During a phone contest.

Col MM0NDX is there with a group operating as 3A3A for the contest weekend. When he announced the group's plans, I told him I was looking forward to working Monaco as an ATNO. Col then told me that they would take a break from the contest from time to time and work a bit of CW - and that the ops knew I needed 3A.

At 1920Z, I saw Paul 3A/G4PVM being spotted on 20m CW. The signal was almost at the noise level but, long story short, I got them for #328.

Col, Paul, Ken, Franki - it's been a damn good day here. Thank you! Time to celebrate with a glass (or three) of Radio Boka.


Day 2 follow-up:




ON5ZO said...

This post needs a follow-up for sure!

John AE5X said...

The follow-up will be a YouTube posting of how you sounded here on 10m - phenomenal conditions. Good luck to you in the remaining 7 hours!

PE4BAS, Bas said...

Phenomenal conditions indeed. Didn't hear you John but saw 7P8RU finishing the QSO with you. Congratulations and also with Monaco. It has been a great day. I only wish I got 7P8RU in the log on 60.....well, later on maybe. Propagation on 10M was great and I had long runs with the states, hoped that you would pop-up. But hey, you can't have everything. Although I worked a lot of DX including 7P8RU on SSB 10M. 73, Bas

John AE5X said...

I decoded you several times here, Bas. You were -22 to -24. Many were calling him. I also saw you spotted during CQWW on 10m but could not copy you there - I did try but no luck.

I hope you did well in the contest and I'm looking forward to reading your report.


MM0NDX said...

Excellent John. At 327 worked, getting a new one is pretty rare. Really delighted we could give you that. 3A is such a damn small place surrounded by high terrain - it's basically a NA blocker !

73 Col (3A3A), MM0NDX

John AE5X said...

Thanks again, Col. And FWIW, your 3A team's signals were quite strong on both 40 and 80 CW the past 2 evening - much more so than on 20m. Good to work you guys and thanks too for the NA effort.