I don’t care about SWR anyway!

Did you read about W2LJ’s rookie mistake? Want to read about another one? Had some afternoon time yesterday and fired up my TS-440S with a fresh battery. Yes, full 100 Watt output this time.

I had no laptop, so I decided to do some just plain old CW/SSB again. 21 MHz was open to southern Europe, so I logged EA6UN in CW. He was quite strong, but some Japanese on the same frequency kept calling him even though he clearly stated “BX2?”. He still got me in the end, though, and I got him. The next nice QSO was CX2TQ in SSB on 14 MHz. Weak but readable when the local QRM was gone. First time CX in the log, so that was nice.

A little later I turned to 18 MHz and CT3FT came in very nicely in CW. I totally forgot to tune up and set the beat tone first and in my enthusiasm I answered him right away. When I looked at my SWR Meter I realised my mistake and started to fiddle with my antenna tuner. No need: he came back to me right away and gave me a 559 report. SWR on my side 1:5, output from my rig 12 Watts, reflected power 7 Watts. Does that mean I worked the Madeira Islands using QRP power? (12-7=5 Watts). Never mind, because I scored three new entities in one afternoon! Not bad at all for a cold and rainy afternoon.

Hans "Fong" van den Boogert, BX2ABT, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Taiwan. Contact him at [email protected].

4 Responses to “I don’t care about SWR anyway!”

  • Mike Ve3wdm:

    Good morning Hans, it is very possible you did do the contact QRP…as a matter of fact I always use QRP and as low as 250Mw’s with an attic dipole to boot! I get very good results and loads of DX contacts. Once I started using QRP it surprised me how far such little power would get me.

  • BX2ABT:

    Sure thing, but sometimes it’s nice to work someone a bit more comfortable and 100 Watts will do the thing nicely then. BTW, up till I fixed the TS-440S I did everything with the 15 Watts from my TS-130V. Not quite QRP, but it certainly feels like it sometimes.

  • ve3cnu:

    No, you cannot do that arithmetic. Why? Because that wave that is reflected back comes back into the output stage of your radio and guess what? There’s a mismatch there too. So back it goes, once again reflected up your feed line. My elmer taught me that way back in the 70s.

  • BX2ABT:

    Yes, but reflected waves interact with forwarded waves and the net result is lower RF output, isn’t it?

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