CQ WW RTTY is the perfect excuse (if you need one) to turn on the amplifier and have a play with the big boys. Its never been more popular, no longer do you need a separate room for your RTTY teletype printer just a PC and some logging software should be fine.
I have in the past completed most of the 48 Hrs as part of a team, making thousands or “QSO” but this year was a much more relaxed casual event. The plan was to grab a few hrs operating over the weekend, in between the usual tasks.
The linear would allow 400w RTTY with around 5w drive, to the doublet antenna. The doublet is 10m per leg, and fed with 30 Ohm ribbon it doesnt make a very nice match on 20m ! The alternative antenna is a 8m vertical with an auto ATU at the base. The CG5000 is a 800w PEP remote auto ATU, although I dont use the amp with this antenna and choose to run 200w barefoot from the TS990 in this configuration.
Remote ATU near the base of the antenna are hard to beat if you haven’t got a resonant antenna, helping to reduce large mismatch in the feeder and the subsequent loss of power. One disadvantage is they need to be powered, the CG5000 requires 12v and isn’t equipped with a bias tee. This requires a separate power cable to be run to the bottom of the garden, fine in my postage stamp but maybe an issue if you own 2 acres !
After spending some time on the bands it was obvious 10m was closed, 15 was a little better but as usual the “easy band” 20m was open and provided some of the best contacts. In total I worked 132 Q in 42 DXCC, using SH5 to analyse the log. The program can be used to check and map many of the stations you work, allowing you to gain a great insight into your operating and in some cases multi operating / radio station.
Here you can see a basic list showing DXCC worked. The mast files contain information on and the location of many of the regular DX stations, and so distances and bearing information can be analysed in tabular and graphical format.
RTTY and logging was provided by the excellent N1MM software, as usual its a real credit to Thomas for a massive free contribution to amateur radio.
Managed to work a few in the CQ WPX RTTY contest this weekend using a basic setup at home. The rules for the contest can be found online and the exchange is 599 and sequential number.
Station Kenwood TS990 @ 30 to 200w.
Antenna 1 – Doublet Antenna 10m per leg @ 10m
Antenna 2 – 9m vertical roach pole with CG5000 Auto ATU at the base.
Antenna 3- Avanti Sigma 5/8 wave ground mounted vertical for 28 MHz
In total I worked 114 stations, mostly on 21 and 28 Mhz. It was nice to see the higher bands open with a good selection of stations worked from NA – 55, SA – 7, EU -43, AF – 4, AS – 8. The operating was search and pounce and ad hoc during the weekend. I did hear Mexico and India but I was unable to work them on my wire antenna.
The amplifier is a solid state HAL1200 that will run up to 400w RTTY and is rated at 1.2KW.
The vertical antenna worked well using the auto ATU at the base, the CG5000 is rated at 800w PEP and 250w continuous, so being driven by the TS990 at 200w RTTY is no problem. I found the 9m roach pole would load quite well on 14 and 21 MHz, although the antenna length was not well suited for 28 MHz. The 5/8 wave vertical worked well on this band, and most stations I could hear was able to read me.
Here is a look at the 21 countries worked.
I did hear quite a few JA stations around 8am on 21 MHz.
Pleased to work V55V in Namibia and P40FA and P49X in Aruba.
In North America I was able to work 55 stations in 20 states. West coast states included Arizona, and Nevada.
I used SH5 a contest log analyser to create some KML files to view some of the QSO on a world map
73 Dave M0TAZ
Interesting Santa had a moment from his warehouse in Finland to work a few on RTTY. I found OF9X calling CQ on 18 MHz. The only details given for the call read, Santa Claus World, Article Circle Lapland, Finland.
Merry Christmas Santa, I hope you had delivered from China all the hover boards required to satisfy children all around the world.
Looking on 7 MHz RTTY today I noticed a cacophony of noise covering around 20 KHz of the band. I couldn’t hear the DX station but the DX cluster confirmed it was the DX station TX3X from Chesterfield Reef. The cluster suggested they were 7.045 and listening up, I could hear people calling from 7045 to 7065. I couldn’t hear the DX station on my wire antenna so settled for working some EU station calling CQ in RTTY.
I first worked Special call TM51SP, followed by DC2TL Markus, HB9CQV Jochanan and then a club station DL0GC. All these stations had to position himself below 7045 to avoid the malay of split noise created by TX3X.
Don’t get me wrong I enjoy working DX stations, and if I could hear him I would have tried, but what happened next was unnecessary. A station without callsign asked DL0GC to stop transmitting as he was causing “interference” to the DX station. That’s not to mention the 20 KHz of noise being created by callers to TX3X. They then proceed to tell DL0GC to stop QRMING !!