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ARRL DX International CW (2017)

ARRL DX Contest, CW

Call: NR4M
Station: NR4M

Class: M/M HP
QTH: Central VA
Operating Time (hrs): 48

Band QSOs Mults
160: 247 70
80: 997 103
40: 1852 122
20: 1953 127
15: 1127 112
10: 74 28
Total: 6250 562 Total Score = 10,419,480

Club: Potomac Valley Radio Club


This was a pleasant change.

In the past, I've lamented because they're a bunch of guys that operate from with varying abilities and we just never could get a good, solid team together.

I guess the stars were in alignment, as we could not done any better with the number and abilities of the ops that participated. At the end, we still had 7 ops sitting in front of radios. This was the first time most of the ops dealt with the two stations on a band. Even though things did get 'messy' at times there was no blood drawn. (A 'lockout' can be a tool of power...) We will get better at it, no doubt.

Need to mention one of our newer contesters, Will, K4MI. He is a young man in his twenties that really seems to like CW (and RTTY) and contesting in general.

He was the definition of B.I.C (Butt in Chair) especially on 15. Plus, being a 'millennial', he took lots of crap from me and took it well. He even won a participation trophy for showing up (Actually, an old car show trophy I had won in the past...) Welcome to the team, Will.

Another 'newbie' to the team is Ian, W0IMD. Not new to contesting and not new to high speed CW. We hope he continues to operate with us.

Recently, there has been a big push to get 'second radios' on the air. To that end, with the help of many, especially KA4RRU ('really, really, ugly'...) we able to install transmit four squares on 20 and 15. Each vertical has about 80 radials and are totally 'stand alone' installations, sharing nothing with their partner stations. The 20 totally kicks butt, so well that you can run from that station while the 'run' ops takes a bathroom break. 15 meters, not so much. We were still installing it on Friday and not all of the bugs are worked out, such as tuning for minimum dump power to dummy load.

Still have rotator issues with top 40 at 190 ft and the middle 15 meter antenna. But, other than that antennas worked well.

160 worked well with 70 countries in the log. Was hoping to break 1000 on 80, but was not to be. K7SV went the last 11 minutes of the contest with no Q's at all.

Sure wish we had 10 meters back like in the recent past. Also, 15 was not as good as it has been, but that was not unexpected. You make the most of what you have.

The one big thing that was missing this weekend was our long time friend and fellow contester, Frank 'Big Frank' Mackey, AKA 'BF'. He has been seriously ill the last few months and is not expected to operate with us in the future.

He has operated with us for longer than I can remember. Please keep him in your prayers.

Very 73 de Steve, NR4M and the entire 'Goat Farm Gang'.


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