Operating Notes – 10/23/12

  1. 10m has been open for the past couple of days. Last night, I worked Hiro, JH0INP¬†from here at my home QTH, using only my loop antenna. He gave me a 559 report. Of course, I’m sure that his seven-element tribander had something to do with that report. :)
  2. I seem to work DX in bunches. Of my last nine QSOs here at home, seven have been DX contacts. W4UTI and W3PX are the two rare domestic QSOs. This evening, I worked I8SAT on 30m. My last contact with him was way back in May 2003.
  3. Pet peeve: stations that respond to my CQ with only their callsigns. I know that this has become standard operating procedure for contests and even DX operation these days, but I’m not having any part of it when it comes to normal operation. If a station sends only his call sign, I either reply with QRZ? or with just a question mark. It’s not just the new ops doing it, either. Some of the guys who are starting to do this are old-timers.


  1. Now to respond to part 3 of your blog : why are you not having any part of it? Usually when it’s busy, and you are almost talking about pileups, it often disturbs me if people are taking ages trying to get in. Just drop your callsign, see if you get heared, and if so, you can go on with the long story :)

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      I’m not talking about operating pileups. When there’s a pileup, that’s an appropriate technique.

      What I’m talking about is when I’m just calling CQ, looking for a ragchew QSO. In that case, it’s really not appropriate at all, imho.

  2. Guilty as charged Dan. Not sure where I picked up the habit, but I suspect in operating QRP just about all the time, I adopted just sending my own call to not add anything extra to complicate what the other station has to pull out of the noise. Of course, when I suspect my sig is good, there’s no excuse.

  3. Dan KB6NU says:

    Well, for me, hearing only a weak call would be more confusing than not. Is that weak signal calling me or someone else? Is that weak signal one that I missed when I called QRL? There’s no way for me to know for sure. It’s easier for a station to pull his own call out of the noise than your call.

  4. Elwood Downey, WB0OEW says:

    Gosh, in 38 years as a ham I’ve only ever responded to a CQ with just my call. I figure nothing more is worth sending until contact is established. What more do you want us to send?

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      The accepted protocol would be KB6NU (1-3 times, depending on band conditions) de WB0OEW (1-3 times, again depending on band conditions). Just hearing a callsign could be confusing. Are you calling me or some other station? Using the proper protocol obviates that confusion.

      In any digital communication, the protocol is designed to eliminate any confusion or mis-interpretation. That’s the reason for following the proper protocol for a CW contact.

  5. Elwood Downey, WB0OEW says:

    Thanks Dan, that does make sense… but I’d still probably answer the guy :-)

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