Call: K9YC
Station: K9YC

Added: 02/Nov/2011
Class: SOAB(A) HP
Operating time: 29.5

 Band  QSOs  Zones  Countries
  160:    2     2        2
   80:   55     8        8
   40:   81    24       49
   20:  182    29       76
   15:  310    29       81
   10:  483    30       87
Total: 1113   122      303  
Total Score = 1,317,500 Club: Soapbox: Following the spirit of this year's
contest season, I decided to "have
fun" by NOT putting in all-nighters
to work JAs on 80 and 40. I was QRT
Friday night by 11pm, and on Saturday
night by about 10 pm. Both mornings,
I let myself wake up in time to hit
the shack soon after 6am. Saturday
morning I hit 80m before going to 20M
after dawn, Sunday I hit 40M for
about an hour and found two Qs on 160
to give me two countries (K and KH6)
and two zones (3 and 31). The
statistics above tell much of the
tale. While I was set up for SO2R, I
didn't do much of it until Sunday
afternoon. No matter how good
conditions are, and how much work I
do to improve the antenna farm, I
still cannot run an opening to EU on
any band. That pretty much limits
SO2R to times when the bands are open
to SA, Asia, or Oceania. The good
news is that the cleanliness of the
K3s driving Titan amps give me the
ability to have two radios ON THE SAME
BAND at maximum legal power (only one
transmitted signal at a time). I was
able to do this on 10, 15, and 20M.
At one point, for example, I was
running on 28,609 kHz and had the
other radio in S&P mode on a different
antenna listening to S3 signals only
17 kHz away. There was SOME phase
noise, but it wasn't QRMing the
desired signal (in this case, the
ES51Z operation). Preamp was on,
attenuator was off. Run antenna was
the Steppir, the S%P antenna was a
4-el Yagi about 175 ft away. The S&P
antennas for 15M and 20M are on a
short tower about 125 ft (not
measured, terrain is pretty rough)
from the SteppIR. At another point,
I had the Run rig on 28,620 and the
S&P rig on 28,551 kHz (70 kHz away)
and heard no phase noise at all, and
this situation was pretty typical. I
observed similar results on 15M and
20M. This experience with good rigs
and good amps, and with careful tuning
of the amps, drives home the point I
have been making about the poor
sportsmanship of those hams who can
afford to do it right but choose not
to do so. When I lived in Chicago,
there was one ham who was broad as a
barn door and others who were not.
Ever since I moved here I've
experienced very broad phase noise
sidebands from one well known local
ham, while most other who are much
closer and running legal power were
nice and clean (and louder). That ham
is now using K3s, and while he's still
broad, it isn't as bad (even while I
was here he was more than twice as
broad). Another top contester, a
serious EE who lives 3 miles north and
experiences the same issues, suspects
problems with his power amp or its
tuning. Another neighbor has recently
joined in the the dirty signal
department. One of them typically
chews up 20 kHz of whatever band
they're working, even on CW. Two of
them running CW on the same band can
easily wipe out 40kHz. This was a real
problem for that top contester during
CQP (I was 200 miles away in Tehama
Co), and it almost certainly cost him
one place in the standings. My
experience with my K3s and 30 year old
Titans during CQWW SSB proves that
there is no excuse for this sloppy
behavior on the part of these two
selfish hams. It's like running down
the basketball floor with your elbows
flying, but the guys you're hitting
are on your own team! Many of us are
engineers by training, and SHOULD be
able to assist those who need help in
cleaning up their act, but they must
WANT to do it. It's long past time to
stop excusing this bad behavior by
saying that "we're too close" -- if I
can run legal power into antennas on
the same band, same mode, less than
200 ft apart, there's no excuse for a
guy 10-15 miles away wiping out 20 kHz
transmitting CW or RTTY. 73, Jim
Brown K9YC