I had some down time over the weekend and felt it was time to spin the K3's VFO and see what was out there. I started on 15m it really did not seem all that busy but I was hearing some German stations so the band was open. My Elecraft P3 is great as I was able to get a snapshot of the CW portion of 15m. This allows me to not spend time moving up and down the band blindly and maybe just missing some stations as they end their transmission. One could end up concluding the band is dead and move on when in fact they just missed a station or stations calling CQ and waiting for a reply. I ended up calling CQ in and around the QRP watering hole at 21.060, in the past I have checked the Reverse Beacon Network (or RBN) just to see how my QRP signal was doing. At this new QTH
|P3 on 20m showing some signals|
for some reason I have been only able to get spotted in Canada and the U.S. To my surprise when I checked RBN I had been spotted in Hungary, Switzerland and Germany. I was very shocked and it kept me on the band calling CQ. Unfortunately there was no answers I then moved onto 17m and was spotted in France but again no answers to my CQ! I then ventured down to my standby band of 20m and found F5GPE Pierre calling CQ. His signal was in around 559 and I gave him a call and he came back to me with a report of 539. I did send him an email thanking him for the contact, he did get back to me giving me more details about his setup.
Remember the time differences between where you are, and where you may be heard. There may just have been no one on, as they were sleeping or working.
That Reverse Beacon Network is a magic tool though, as is the WSPR network.