Random thoughts.

The other night, I tried uploading some QSOs to Log of the World.  I was unsuccessful as my certificate had expired.  I filed for a new one, got everything working and uploaded my latest batch of QSOs without a problem.  I try to do this once a month or once every couple of weeks.

Out of curiosity, I went back to the LOTW site tonight to do a little math.  I have a LOTW QSL return rate of 19.8 percent.  I have no idea as to whether that’s good, bad or average.

I went over to eQSL and did the same math – 19.27 percent – slightly lower.  Frankly, that surprised me.  I think we can all agree that eQSL has less “hoops” to jump through in order to get it working.  I am not criticizing LOTW when I say that – I’m just pointing out what I think is fact.  Although personally, I have not had any insurmountable LOTW problems, I have heard horror stories from other Hams who had, and gave up – running and screaming into the night.  eQSL may not be as secure, I don’t know – but it does seem easier to use. 

I would have thought (there goes that “conventional wisdom” again!) that being easier to use would also translate to ” greater participation and use”.  I guess not.

Tonight is the 80 Meter QRP Fox hunt.  Dave N0IT in Missouri is not feeling all that great, so he has swapped with John K4BAI.  So the Foxes will be John in Georgia and Jim K9JWV in Utah.  “Conventional wisdom” is telling me that from New Jersey on 80 Meters, I should be able to work John fairly easily and that Jim may be a stretch, if I hear him at all.

We’ll see.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP – When you care to send the very least!

Larry Makoski, W2LJ, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Jersey, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

9 Responses to “Random thoughts.”

  • Michael N5TGL:

    My return rate is 28.6%. I think this is mainly due to me chasing a lot of stuff on digital modes, which usually seem to have more participation in LoTW.

    It seems that LoTW is becoming more popular tho, I don’t remember it getting crushed in contests until just recently. Also, the processing time used to be mere seconds, now it takes several minutes for the files to show as processed. All this is good, because they can always upgrade the server farm to handle the load, and it’s good to see people using the system. Now that they plan on adding the CQ awards to it, it’ll be even more popular.

    I upload at the end every evening of operation. It’s a simple process and I do this mainly because many times, people are waiting on my QSL for an award. I’d encourage all LoTW users to do the same.

    73 Michael

  • Chris kQ2RP:

    Larry, my ‘hit rates’ for eQSL and LOTW have dipped slightly from here, but are still above 30%:


    I will say that I have mainly just been logging my DX contacts, so perhaps that would account for my higher rate of return?

  • Peter KG5WY:

    I only use the MAIL with REAL cards.
    My return rate is 51%.

  • K4TOJ - Tom:

    My return rate with LOTW is 37.1% while eQSL is 19.1%. The LOTW figure is actually higher because I know that I have some orphans that you can’t delete out of LOTW. But, it’s still pretty impressive. One thing that may be contributing to my rate is I’m a fairly new ham and have had my existing call for about a year and a half.


  • Michael N5TGL:


    Pity that you limit yourself to the mail only. I do both.

    73 Michael

  • Peter KG5WY:

    Michael, I pity YOU!

  • Michael N5TGL:

    Let me see if I can understand the logic here:

    1. REAL cards and REAL mail = good
    2. LoTW = bad
    3. REAL cards and REAL mail + LoTW = bad

    Apparently being a luddite is a good thing?

    73 Michael

  • Michael N5TGL:

    That’s what I said about you pitying me — which I’m still not sure why you said that?

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