Thursday, July 31, 2014

July 2014 Wrap-Up

DXCC: Five new ones worked in July, but only added one in the Mixed Confirmed column (9V1YC Singapore). Just 20 new band slots confirmed, and 3 more on CW.

DXCC Totals
7/31/2014
CfdWkdCfdWkdCfdWkd
Mixed16620380m102617m4984
CW14218640m10713415m103135
SSB10513330m558912m611
Digital608220m12416810m3852

Last 10 New DXCC Worked
203SAINT PIERRE AND MIQUELONFP/OH5OHO7/21/2014
202GEORGIA4L8A7/13/2014
201WEST MALAYSIA9M2TO7/9/2014
200THE GAMBIAC5II7/8/2014
199AZERBAIJAN4J0SFR7/6/2014
198SINGAPORE9V1YC6/22/2014
197SAUDI ARABIA7Z1SJ6/22/2014
196OMANA42A6/21/2014
195MALAWI7QNL6/7/2014
194ALBANIAZA/ON4CCV6/7/2014

WAS: Rhode Island on phone is in the book, so now just need WV on CW for Triple Play.

Worked All States
AwardTotalAwardTotalAwardTotal
Basic *5080M2717M30
CW4940M4915M39
Phone5030M3312M2
Digital *5020M4810M23

WPX
AwardTotalAwardTotalAwardTotal
Mixed53380M2017M55
CW37340M24415M206
Phone19730M5812M7
Digital13120M29810M84

Monday, July 21, 2014

DXCC #203: FP/OE5OHO St. Pierre & Miquelon

I've found propagation to be pretty poor from Texas to the VO1/CY9/FP part of the world, at least for me. This is the first FP station I've actually heard and it was a pretty tough one to work. No ClubLog, QRZ, eQSL or LOTW.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

DXCC #202: 4L8A Georgia, 15m DXCC, and the IARU HF World Championship

Another minimal contest effort with 67 QSOs, all CW. One of them was a new country for me -- Georgia, courtesy of 4L8A on 20m. I'll take it.

The contest also netted me my 100th confirmation on 15m (S567O in Slovenia). I'm now 3/5 of the way to 5-Band DXCC.

Update 4-Aug-2014: 4L8A comes through on LOTW for #167 confirmed (mixed)!


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

DXCC #201: 9M2TO West Malaysia

Working from home today, and lucked into 9M2TO on 15m around 2pm local time. Not what I would have guessed to be the best time to work into East Asia, but there he was. He last uploaded to LOTW on 21-May-2014, so we'll wait and see...

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

DXCC #200: C5II The Gambia

How sweet it is!
JA1UII and JE1WVQ have been QRV as C5II and C5JA from The Gambia. Until 09-July. That's in a few hours, and time was running out. I had a very weak copy on C5II yesterday evening, too weak to even drop my callsign. I figured that would be my last chance. But by luck or providence I happened to be home this afternoon and saw him spotted first on 20m (no copy at all), and then on 17m where I was able to log C5II for my 200th DXCC entity worked!



Triple Play #149 - One to go!

Rhode Island on phone -- and with it the phone portion of Triple Play -- is in the books! West Virginia on CW is the last one I need.


Sunday, July 6, 2014

DXCC #199: 4J0SFR Azerbaijan

"Safari" DX-activators club station 4J0SFR heard on 15m CW late this afternoon very weak. I had to use almost all of the K3's magic bag of tricks to pull this one out of the static: bandwidth dialed down to 200 Hz, DSP Noise Reduction on the 1-3 setting, RF Gain throttled back, phones clamped to my head in binaural mode... all this made a very difficult to copy signal pretty darn readable. Got him after a few calls, sent my call a couple-three times to make sure he got it and once I heard it repeated back to me correctly I gave my "TU 599 dit dit" and hit the log submit button. #199 worked is in the bag. US QSL manager, no mention of LOTW on his QRZ page.

Of Triple Play and Antenna Maintenance

About time! I worked 13 Colonies special event station K2C in Rhode Island on phone and their QRZ page promises QSL via LOTW! That will be the last one for the phone portion of Triple Play. Now I just need West Virginia on CW. It kills me, I have QSOs in the log for both RI on phone and WV on CW (even have a card for RI), but the Triple Play award requires LOTW verification. Rules are rules. Unfortunately, West Virginia's second ARRL Centennial operating slot isn't until October 22, so to get this done soon I need to find another CW op in WV that uses LOTW. It could happen, I guess...

And another "about time!" -- almost a year after Tarheel sent me a replacement mounting bracket, I finally got around to swapping it out. The new mount fits perfectly. Now I can send the defective mount back and clear my conscious, as I promised to return it to them 11 months ago.

While I had the antenna broken down I did the recommended maintenance -- removed the plexiglass cover, clean the coil with alcohol and a ScotchBrite pad -- and took to the tripod's mast with some sandpaper to remove the black powder coat that I neglected to fully remove when I first set up the antenna in 2009. Now I know there is a good electrical connection between the mounting bracket and the ground radial plate.

I'm still missing a few radials, lost to the lawnmower no doubt, but I seem to be hearing a little better than I have been of late. Maybe it's just coincidental and the bands have simply improved the day I did antenna maintenance. It could happen, I guess...

Either way, I was able to add a few needed countries to my 17m count -- Romania, Belarus, Samoa, Philippines, Greenland -- as well as a few more of the 13 Colonies stations.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

June 2014 Wrap-Up


Not a very productive month for QSLs, though it was nice to see the 9J2T Zambia DXpedition's LOTW upload come through (got 'em on 40, 30, and 20). Azores (CU2BV) and United Arab Emirates (A65BD) brings me up to 99 confirmed on 15m.

DXCC Totals
6/30/2014
CfdWkdCfdWkdCfdWkd
Mixed16519880m102617m4476
CW13918040m10613415m99131
SSB10513330m538312m511
Digital608220m12116510m3752

Five new ones worked, leaving me just two shy of 200...

Last 10 New DXCC Worked
198SINGAPORE9V1YC6/22/2014
197SAUDI ARABIA7Z1SJ6/22/2014
196OMANA42A6/21/2014
195MALAWI7QNL6/7/2014
194ALBANIAZA/ON4CCV6/7/2014
193GHANA9G5ZZ5/25/2014
192ISRAEL4X4AK5/25/2014
191EAST MALAYSIA9M6XRO5/18/2014
190SAN MARINOT77C5/18/2014
189PAPUA NEW GUINEAP29NO5/17/2014

Still no love from RI on Phone or WV on CW...

Worked All States
AwardTotalAwardTotalAwardTotal
Basic *5080M2717M29
CW4940M4915M39
Phone4930M3112M2
Digital *5020M4810M23

...and a few more prefixes. Yawn.

WPX
AwardTotalAwardTotalAwardTotal
Mixed51580M2017M48
CW35540M23915M195
Phone18830M5612M6
Digital13020M28610M83

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

eDX100

I haven't really been keeping track too closely, but it appears that 4Z4AK's eQSL that I received in May was #100 for me on eQSL.net. So in the end it took about 6 months longer to reach 100 confirmed on eQSL than it did using LOTW. Haven't decided whether I will apply for the actual award yet.

#100

DXCC #196, #197 & #198: A42A Oman, 7Z1SJ Saudi Arabia, and 9V1YC Singapore, and the All Asian DX CW Contest

Courtesy of the All Asian DX CW contest on June 21-22, I nabbed the three above-mentioned countries for all-time new ones, bringing me even closer to the 200 Worked milestone.

I also worked A65BD, my second contact with the U.A.E., who verified quickly on LOTW to give me my 164th country confirmed; and E20AX Thailand, another country previously worked but not confirmed. Waiting for ClubLog to be updated to see if I made it into the E20AX log OK before sending for a QSL.

My biggest bonehead move of late was to continuously call 9M6XRO, only realizing later that East Malaysia in not in fact Asia but Oceania! Sorry OM!

Update 06-Jul-2014: E20AX is matched on ClubLog. No LOTW, though.


Update 07-Jul-2014: A65BD is matched, too!


Update 31-Jul-2014: 9V1YC in the book!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Something Old, Something New...


My haul from this years Ham-Com in Plano wasn't nearly as bountiful as the previous two trips (a Tarheel antenna in 2009, and a Flex 1500 last year). Still, I was just as thrilled to see a copy of Martti Laine OH2BH's Where Do We Go Next? I missed out on this years ago, and it's been out of print for a while. I think I saw it on eBay once for an obscene price. The person selling this copy was asking $6. After I got home and sat down to start reading it I saw that it was signed and inscribed by the author to the original owner (I presume), Bill K9IW.


The only other thing I left Plano with, besides an ARRL golf shirt that my XYL bought me, was a copy of Circuit Simulation and Analysis. Been wanting to learn more about using circuit design software for some time. I have LTSpice installed on my PC but have no idea how to use it. I reckon this should show me the way.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

DXCC #195: 7QNL Malawi

Finally heard 7QNL! He was so weak I was less than half-sure he got my call correct -- I heard "WW" and "T", so I figured I'd send an exchange and worry about working him again later if I heard him better. I got a "TU" back from him and logged it. Today the log match came through on ClubLog. Good thing, too, because it appears to be one of Remco's last QSOs from Malawi.

#195 worked all-time mixed, #176 on CW, #81 on 30m.



Saturday, June 7, 2014

DXCC #194: ZA/ON4CCV Albania

A Belgian team is operating from Albania this week. ZA/ON4CCV was about 579 on 20m into Texas this evening and I was able to work him easily, just before a mad pileup ensued. Ten operators, so I expect they'll be all over the bands. No LOTW, apparently.


Update 16-June-2014: I checked ClubLog the other day and saw that I wasn't included in ZA/ON4CCV's log. I hadz sad. But today something told me to check again and...


Happy Dance shall now commence!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

May 2014 Wrap-Up

While May wasn't a very prolific month for me with only 152 QSOs logged, it was rewarding. Closing in on 200 DXCC entities worked, hit the 500 WPX mark, and within spitting distance of 100 countries confirmed on 15m. Just five new ones worked in May, but three of them were confirmed quickly on LOTW (Papua New Guinea, San Marino and East Malaysia), while one other (Ghana) is matched on Club Log. And with W1AW/7 putting Wyoming in the log (and LOTW confirmation pending), I am now two QSOs away from Triple Play (RI on phone and WV on CW).

DXCC Totals
5/31/2014
CfdWkdCfdWkdCfdWkd
Mixed16219380m102617m4074
CW13517440m10413415m97127
SSB10513330m508012m511
Digital608220m11716210m3752

Last 10 New DXCC Worked
193GHANA9G5ZZ5/25/2014
192ISRAEL4Z4AK5/25/2014
191EAST MALAYSIA9M6XRO5/18/2014
190SAN MARINOT77C5/18/2014
189PAPUA NEW GUINEAP29NO5/17/2014
188SVALBARDJW/SF0F4/21/2014
187WALLIS AND FUTUNA IS.FW5JJ4/14/0201
186PALAUT88QX4/11/2014
185TONGAA35V4/10/2014
184FIJI ISLANDS3D2FJ3/28/2014

Worked All States
AwardTotalAwardTotalAwardTotal
Basic *5080M2717M28
CW4840M4915M38
Phone4930M2512M2
Digital *5020M4810M23

WPX
AwardTotalAwardTotalAwardTotal
Mixed50080M1917M44
CW34040M23615M190
Phone18830M5312M6
Digital13020M27410M83