No, the New DXers Handbook by Bryce K. Anderson, K7UA, isn’t the latest in my series of No-Nonsense guides to amateur radio, but it could be. This free e-book lays it all out for new DXers in much the same style that I have tried to lay it all out for those trying to get into the hobby.
The book takes this no-nonsense approach right off the bat. K7UA couldn’t put it more simply, “Listening is the key to successful DXing.” It’s not watching the DX clusters, or reading DX bulletins. It’s listening.
Further down, K7UA maintains that an important skill for a DXer is persistence. You have to be in your shack when the DX is on the air. As the author says, “You can’t work them if you are not there!”
My one quibble with the book is that I think he gives short shrift to CW operation. Although K7UA concedes that CW is perhaps the most efficient mode, he also says, “SSB might well now be the DXer’s primary mode.” I’m not so sure about that. All of the recent DXpeditions and many, if not most, DX stations operate CW.
I’ll even go a step further, and say that your chances of working a DXpediition are better on CW than on phone. This is mainly because they can work them faster on CW than on SSB, and this gives you a better chance of making contact, especially when conditions aren’t optimal.
At any rate, the New DXers Handbook is a great read, and you can’t beat the price. It’s FREE!