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Author Topic: Prosign usage when starting a QSO  (Read 426 times)
AE6RF
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Posts: 151


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« on: November 09, 2006, 10:17:25 AM »

Greetings,

What is the proper prosign usage for starting a QSO?

Most of what I hear on the bands is:

CQ... de W1AW CQ K
W1AW de AE6RF K
AE6RF de W1AW BT TNX...

But I also hear

CQ de W1AW AR K
and
CQ de W1AW AR

As well as the first comeback being
W1AW de AE6RF AR

Is there a standard, or is it just one of those things that evolves using a "natural language?"

73 de Donald
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WA2DTW
Member

Posts: 91




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« Reply #1 on: November 09, 2006, 10:28:43 AM »

Hi Donald
"AR" means "end of transmission".  It can be used during a QSO, but should not be used after a CQ.
"BT" is like "Uhhh", and is a time filler while you are composing the next thought.  It is not needed at the end of a transmission.
When you send "K", anyone is welcome to come back to you.  It is most useful after a CQ.  If I want only  the station I am talking to to come back to me, I use KN, although some use AR.
"AR" before "K" or "KN" is unnecessary.
For a quick break without identifying (can be done if you ID every 10 minutes), use BK.
Hope that is helpful.

73
Steve WA2DTW

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WB2WIK
Member

Posts: 20574




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« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2006, 11:45:54 AM »

Protocol, going "way back" is:

W1AW de WB2WIK xxx xxx xxx xxx AR W1AW de WB2WIK K

The AR indicated end of transmission prior to call signature.  Then comes the call signature and invitation to transmit.

No law applies here.

Most people don't bother with the AR, as it's not needed.

In informal QSOs or traffic handling, it's also a time waster to sign it over to the other party with every transmission, unless 10 minutes has passed and it's time to I.D. anyway.  I usually just end a thought and send BK to "break" it over to the other guy.  When 10 minutes rolls around, we find an appropriate space to I.D. and then just go back to chit-chatting again.

WB2WIK/6
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W5ESE
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Posts: 550


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« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2006, 07:14:08 AM »

"Officially", 'AR' should be used only when replying
to a station, but before two-way contact has been
established.

So in your example,

CQ... DE W1AW CQ K

W1AW DE AE6RF AR

AE6RF DE W1AW TNX FER REPLY BT ... AE6RF DE W1AW K

At the end of a contact, to signify their last
transmissions, the 'SK' prosign is used like this;

SK W1AW DE AE6RF

A nice little article about CW operating procedures
is at:

http://www.arrl.org/news/features/2002/03/17/1/

And a handy aid to print out and have on hand is:

http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/forms/fsd220.pdf

73
Scott
W5ESE
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W5HTW
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Posts: 729


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« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2006, 04:24:47 PM »

Listen to the W1AW bulletins.  At the end you will hear, DE W1AW AR

When hams were more closely related to military procedures, the use of AR meant "nothing follows."  That is how it is used in the one-way broadcasts by W1AW, or on commercial or government radio.  When they send AR they literally mean "there ain't gonna be another peep out of me."  It isn't followed by "K" or "SK" or "CL" or anything else.  It meant -- well, darn, it means "nothing follows."  As in "nothing follows."  It was used to indicate the end of a string of messages, or in the case of W1AW, the end of a bulletin or code practice transmission.

However, hams have always used it in other ways, and since we aren't bound by ACP (Allied Communications Procedures, of which copies are on my web site for download) we can do it with a whole lot more freedom.

Now it is used more as an "end of text" before the call signs are sent, as "BACK TO YOU AR W3GAB DE W5HTW K"  I don't see anything wrong with that.  I tend not to use it that way, but if someone does, I understand what they mean.  I'd be more likely to use "BT" in that case, if I used anything at all.  But most likely not to use anything at all.  Just 'BACK TO YOU W3GAB DE W5HTW K"  

Since that is common usage, that's fine.  We are not a rigid bunch!  Knowing that, even sending CQ CQ DE CALL AR is not a sin, as it is indeed the end of a transmission.  However "K" makes more sense in that situation.

The fact is if you send K, or AR, or nuttin' at all, folks will still get the idea.   I hear people who would send it this way:  CQ CQ W5HTW W5HTW"   And that's it!  No "DE" and no "K" or "AR."  A moment of silence is enough.  If someone wants you, they'll call you.

In the 40s and 50s we hams tended to adhere more to the standard prosign usage prescribed by the military, and there were reasons for doing that.  Those reasons no longer exist, so we can slip away from "circuit discipline" and just have fun.

Ih other words, don't worry about it.  Have fun.

Ed
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