Posts Tagged ‘DXpedition’

IOTA contest and CY9M DXpedition

I was planning on spending some time this weekend participating in IOTA contest...but...I got called into work and by the time I got home and settled in I was only able to put in about an hour toward the contest. This is the first time I had taken part in the contest and was surprised at the turn out, this is a very busy contest for sure. I had hoped to add to my DXCC count by taking advantage of some of the rare islands. I did hear lots of rare DX but that was as far as it got to making any sort of contact. I found the bands to be so so there was an M6 flare along with an R2 radio black out that did not help out conditions. Despite the conditions I was able to make 8 contacts.
On all my contacts I tried with the lowest power possible and worked my way up until I made contact. If  I was at full output (5 watts) and still could not make contact it was time to move along.

Below is how the hour of contesting worked out for me
1) K1VST          NA046          5 watts
2) VE1AL          NA010          5 watts
3) DL5AXX       -------            5 watts
4) M05BFL        EU005         5 watts
5) DL8FBL         ------           500mW's          8,014 miles per watt
6) 9A/OM8AA   EU016         500mW's          8894 miles per watt
7) S58VU           -------         3 watts 
8) G6PZ             EU005      100mW's           35,262 miles per watt        

Pile up for CY9M on my P3
I had seen CY9M on the band scope but they were super busy and with my 5 watts I felt I did not stand a chance. This morning there was an email on the Elecraft reflector from WB2LQF stating he had worked CY9M on both 20m and 30m's with his Elecraft KX3 and using 5 watts to do it!!! So I am back at it now and it's still busy but I am going to give it a go again this afternoon and evening. I just checked out WB2LQF's web page (see link above) he also uses attic dipoles such as it's GAME ON!!!

Another First–T32C DXpedition

With the bands heating up like they are, several new “Firsts” for me have been flying into the logbook.  Something I’ve never been able to accomplish was working a major DXpedition.  I tried many, many times to work K5D from Desecheo Island back in 2009.  I could hear them and so could all the other hams trying to bust the pile up.  I guess this is a good problem to have for a successful DXpedition.

I first learned about what a DXpedition was all about soon after getting my ticket in 2007.  At a club meeting they showed the DVD from the 3Y0X DXpedition to Peter I Island.  I think I was just as fascinated with the logistical efforts of getting all the gear and the people onto the island as I was with the radio operations.

Anyway, I learned of the T32C DXpedition a few months ago and I put the dates in my calendar.  The dates were 28 September through 26 October.  While I didn’t intend to wait until almost the last moment, it is just how it ended up.  The first part of the month I had family in town and this led to some long days in the office and other activities. 

Last week I began to get serious about trying to work T32C. After trying and not finding success with K5D, I figured if I could work T32C just once I would be pleased.  So I began what I recently blogged about called “The Thrill of the Hunt” to locate T32C.  The bands have recently been performing really well and fingers crossed the hunt would go well.

I checked DX Cluster and saw a few US stations reporting T32C on 17 meters SSB.  I went down to the shack, turned on the HF rig, the computer and tuned to where the cluster indicated I might find them.  Low and behold, I could hear T32C and I could hear the pile up trying to work them.  I gave my call sign a few times and within about 5 minutes I had been heard.  The T32C operator confirmed my callsign and I logged them in my HRD logbook.  I was excited….I had worked my first DXpedition.

The next morning I checked their online logbook and was disappointed to find when I entered my callsign it returned no results.  I wasn’t 100% certain of just how long it should or would take for their logbook to get updated.  However, I read on Tim Kirby’s, G4VXE blog that he had worked them the same day and he was able to confirm his QSO.  While I knew I worked them, I also wanted the confirmation via their website and also I wanted their QSL card to document this special occasion.  By the way, the T32C website indicated that if you didn’t see you callsign on their online logbook to try them again.  This is exactly what I planned to do.

The next day was Wednesday and I routinely work from home on Wednesday and Fridays.  Between the conference calls and a few other urgent tasks I needed to complete, I kept an eye on the DX Clusters and saw them being reported on several bands, but not on 17 meters.  I took a short break in the afternoon and found them on 12 meters with very few takers.  They heard me on the first call and once again T32C was in my log, but on 12 meters. 

Later that evening I went back downstairs and quickly worked T32C on 15, 10 and 20 meters.   I was excited and pleased to have worked this DXpedition four times on four different bands in one day.  But one thing didn’t feel right..I wanted to get them on 17 meters.  I still had several days and would just have to keep trying. 

Friday afternoon between conference calls I managed to work Italy and a new DX entity of Netherlands on JT65.  Then when spinning the dial on 17 meters, I heard T32C calling CQ.  Once I worked out the split frequencies, I replied to their CQ and heard them answer me.  I carefully listened to make sure he heard my callsign correctly.  QSL….he had.

On Saturday morning I checked and YES….the 17m QSO was showing.  As you can see below, I successfully worked T32C on 10, 12, 15, 17 and 20 meters.  I’ll call this the T32C Sweep.  I’ve gotta admit that I’m somewhat glad my first 17m QSO didn’t end up in their log.  I’m afraid I might not have been as motivated to keep trying.



A long story short, I’m really delighted to have worked the T32C Sweep and I look forward to working more DXpeditions.  My next goal is to work TX7M.  Will you join me?  Now I need to go so I can try to find TX7M on the bands. 

Until next time,

73 de KD0BIK

Do two wrongs make a right…..

  Last night while on the radio searching out once again T32C my PowerSDR showed a pileup off the T32C frequency. Well over I went and sure enough it was a pile up but not for T32C it seemed to be for 3XY1D in Guinea. Hmm I thought never worked that part of the world so maybe I will give it a go. Then out of nowhere came (in CW) "phoney" very loud and over all the traffic. But not just once..... every 10 to 15 seconds!! Then in  CW came a response "NO" to which the reply was "yes phoney".  This ruined it for me as I would guess many others. Now the call did sound funny but I looked up the call and there is a DXpedition there for October and November. As I QSY'd along the band never finding T32C but possibly finding 3XY1D. I had not been given a chance to work him because of an operator who some how was given the "DXpedition gold enforcement badge". What is operator pretending (maybe) to be someone they are not just for the joy of forming a operator who deliberately (for sure) transmits over others knowing he is doing so....or both? Two wrongs don't make a right!

T32C DXpedition….

After reading  some blogs how QRP power has made it out to T32C I was game to give it a go myself. Well I went to T32C's website which by the way is fantastic. It is full of information regarding the DXpedition as well as live up to date spotting information. I checked the frequency's  the website said they would be on and it was only late last night I could just hear them over the noise level on 40m. That was a close as I got to a signal from the team. I tried today and nothing and will give it a go this evening as well. I am hopeful that I will be able to pull off a contact but at this point it is very hard to do so if I am unable to hear them at my QTH. I also went to the VOACAP website and punched in my info.....and well the results for me making a contact with my power, (QRP) location and antenna (attic dipole) gives me a slim to none chance!!!

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