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eHam Forums => Misc => Topic started by: 2E0OZI on December 30, 2010, 07:11:44 AM



Title: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on December 30, 2010, 07:11:44 AM
Thanks to Ludwig, OE6RLF who was my first ever ham radio contact, on the 20m band today at 1410. I was so excited I forgot to note down what frequency he was calling on.

Next time I'll be better prepared.

I had tried a few calls myself, stayed away from the pileup, and just heard his call when searching the band. I tuned him in, and then he called again - nobody seemed to replying so I did and he came straight back with my call. BRILLIANT.


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: WD5GWY on December 30, 2010, 09:48:06 AM
Congratulations! First contacts are always the best. And to have a DX contact for you first one is
even sweeter!! You'll certainly remember that one!
So, now you should be hooked, especially bagging a DX station for your very first contact.
Good luck and have fun!
james
WD5GWY


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: K7KBN on December 30, 2010, 12:31:18 PM
Nice one, Scotty.

You will probably find that it's a lot easier simply to log the band, or the "generic" frequency for a particular band, rather than the precise, down to the microhertz number.

"20 CW" is just as valid as "14,017,247.4 CW", IMO.  Unless Ofcom specifically requires a different format.  Here in the States, we haven't had to keep actual "logs" for years, although I suspect most of us do.


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: K0IZ on December 30, 2010, 05:32:15 PM
Send him a QSL card direct, and save his card when you get it.  You will treasure it in the years to come.  Congratulations!!!!


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: WD4ELG on December 30, 2010, 07:03:37 PM
Welcome, Scotty!

I went 4 months before my first DX contact, up to that point it was all 40 meter CW stateside (the old novice CW band, 7100 to 7150, waaaay back).  Then the DX bug bit me too.

Mark Lunday
WD4ELG


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on December 31, 2010, 02:23:38 AM
I have not even thought of getting a QSL card made up yet...... the whole thing about them is slightly mystifying - surely if someone wants confirmation of a contact with me I'll just send them a card. I don't mind paying, I suspect I won't be sending out thousands a year or anything!


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: K2FOX on December 31, 2010, 03:46:31 AM
I have not even thought of getting a QSL card made up yet...... the whole thing about them is slightly mystifying - surely if someone wants confirmation of a contact with me I'll just send them a card. I don't mind paying, I suspect I won't be sending out thousands a year or anything!

Hi Scotty, Congratulations on your first contact!

QSL cards are easy to make yourself. I use Microsoft Publisher, there are already postcard templates built in. I just
add the text boxes for rst, mhz, etc and throw on a nice picture and my call sign, then print them using a nice glossy card stock. Saves a ton of money (that you can use for postage).

Good luck and have a Happy New Year!

-Jay


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on December 31, 2010, 05:04:39 AM
Just got the second LA7GNA John who I had a nice chat to for a few minutes or so before I let him get on with calling more people up.

Jay sounds like the plan - I have huge amounts of 4x6 photo paper that comes with (or used to) every time I bought ink cartridges - that will look nice. As you say, I'll make something up myself as save it as a template and just print as and when required.

I assume if someone wants a card they will ask??

all the best

Scotty



Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: N1UK on December 31, 2010, 05:21:15 PM
Normally stations will request a card but sometimes they will just turn up in your mailbox or via the bureau (buro). It would be a good idea to make sure that you have envelopes with your QSL buro and then batches of cards will arrive at your home QTH every so often

73 Mark N1UK


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: K8AXW on December 31, 2010, 08:20:32 PM
I'll NEVER forget my first contact Scotty!  It was 54 years ago on CW.  I used a Heathkit AT-1 transmitter that used cathode keying.  This is almost never used these days.  The full power output tube current flows through the key. 

I was very nervous and actually sweating.  My fingers slipped off the J-38 handkey knob and came in contact with the key arm and the resulting electrical shock rattled my teeth!  After that my keying was so bad that the receiving station just went away.  Guess he figured I was drunk! 

Enjoy Scotty. 

73

Al - K8AXW


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on January 01, 2011, 06:13:06 AM
Thanks Al - just made another contact (my 4th) a few minutes ago, dropped my pen, couldn't find it to get down the details, so I had to sign off! I know Max from Italy wished to say more, but I was stuck, so it was more like a contest QSO. I'll have to learn to calm down a bit, and organise things a bit better. Of course subject to Murphy's Law, when I am 100% organised and in the permanent radio room instead of beside the beside table - I won't make any contacts! ::)

all the best

Scotty

PS - all the power through the key? I have heard about that system thats a bit scary. I do have ambitions to get onto CW but its a long learning process I have only just started.


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: N1UK on January 01, 2011, 06:47:26 AM
You should keep a log book of all your hf contacts (QSO's). Most people log onto a pc program these days and there are several good and free logging programs available. A paper log is effective too.


I keep several pencils handy to make notes during a QSO

Have fun....Can you share your callsign with us?

73 Mark N1UK


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on January 01, 2011, 06:56:18 AM
Oh yes sorry Mark its M6OZI  :) I have a nice big day-to-a-page diary that is serving as a logbook at the moment. I have noticed folks can look up my call instantly so they are at their computer as well as the radio, wheras mine is up the stairs and round the corner. The grand plan is to have the radio here in the computer room, like I have seen in many pictures of setups. Its handy to be able to record a contact straight away I suppose. I need to get the coax under the house - a tricky operation by the looks of it.  ::)

All my contacts have been in Europe so far, thats fine with me, but yes one day I'd like to make the USA.

all the best

Scott
 


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: N1UK on January 01, 2011, 08:09:01 AM
Hi Scott,

I love your bike. I have an old 1972 Triumph Bonneville. The DX spotting sites are really useful to see who is on

http://www.dxwatch.com/

A lot of logging programmes automatically display the station details from qrz.com as well as checking for previous contacts. I am using an access database programme which is a little clonky. Take a look at Ham Radio Deluxe among others

You might want to try a 15m dipole and I expect that I will be able to work you then when we get a day with good conditions. 40m is a good band to try as well now that a lot of the broadcast stations have been moved out of the band. Of course 20m is fun too.

If you can get under the house, then you should be able to drill a hole through the floor and run the coax that way. It all takes a bit of thinking about. What rig are you running right now?


73 Mark N1UK G3ZZM


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on January 01, 2011, 08:27:51 AM
Hi Mark,

Its an IC718 and although I have only had it for a month I am ver happy with it. Its very intuitive and easy to use and that what I wanted, instead of having to concentrate on driving the rig I can think about my operating proceedures. Here the next level up is Intermeadiate which allows 50w so I have no need for a really powerful rig. Simple and fun is what I like!

73

Scott M6OZI


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: N1UK on January 01, 2011, 03:28:51 PM
That looks like a nice radio. If you would like you can drop me some e-mail sometime and we sort out a sked and see if we can make it across the pond on 20m. I have worked a few stations from the UK who were running 10 watts and that was before I got my beam up. My e-mail address is good in qrz.com,

Have fun with your new station and happy New Year

73 Mark N1UK G3ZZM


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: N1UK on January 02, 2011, 10:23:53 AM
I worked several stations who were running 10 watts from the UK this morning on 15m, so good luck on your first contact across the pond.

73 Mark N1UK


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on January 02, 2011, 11:33:45 AM
Hi Mark, a few hours ago I heard very clearly a station in the Catskills and over about 30 minutes patiently tried to work him as he was calling for DX Europe. No luck, but its really the first time I have properly tried to contact a US station. I hope to raise my antenna by another 8 feet tomorrow, and have a scheme whereby if my wife is away at all I can raise the centre of the dipole quite a bit and try an inverted V. Have to wait for Jill to be away as this would invole a huge pole in the back garden slap bang in the middle of it! Not a pretty sight (except to me!).

About the bikes, I love the old Bonnevilles and an old Triumph was nearly my first big bike in 1996. I was in Ryans in Parramatta and they had a Tiger 100 that was not perfect, but was perfectly sound, in other words the owner had ridden it rather than preserved it. It fitted me perfectly, was green, had a little chrome rack on the tank, a lovely machine. I decided that as I was not a mechanical genius I had better get a more modern bike. So I bought an SRX600 that was great but had a fault that could not be corrected without a replacement engine. I wrote a story about my first tour on the bike, I'll send you the link you might enjoy it.  ;)

all the best

Scott



Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: N1UK on January 03, 2011, 12:34:17 PM
It sounds hopeful that you were able to hear the Catskills station. Couldn't he hear you because of other stations calling? How strong was he on your s-meter I wonder.


My friend had a T100SS when we were at school. I had an old 1962 500cc Triumph Speedtwin....all 27hp of it. Yes they need quite a lot of attention to keep them running.

73 Mark N1UK


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: KJ1D on January 10, 2011, 04:38:32 PM
Congrats Scotty. This is the beginning of a wonderful hobby.


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on January 11, 2011, 05:07:27 AM
Thanks Richard, I now have 9 contacts, 3 confirmed on the Zed (but I use a paper log in case thiers goes down!) the last one was in Italy -there are a lot of strong stations there and they can hear me well.

I can hear folks in the USA and Canada but so far conditions probably have not been right for me to reach them. Add to that they are rather popular when they call and its going to be a battle while conditions are patchy (not to mention being only on 20 limits me a bit).

I am really enjoying it so far, only drawback seems to be my wife really does NOT like the dipole in the back garden. I could move it to 1/2 on the roof of the house to reduce the visual impact, but that really would mess with the performance I think. Or under the gutter would really pick up more noise from the house. A W3EDP might be the only solution but I hate to give up the resonant antenna and start having to buy and use a tuner......


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: KJ1D on January 11, 2011, 05:56:59 AM
Scotty
I am also using a dipole but it is made from green wire which blends in the the trees in my back yard. I have never had anyone even notice it.


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: 2E0OZI on January 11, 2011, 09:14:19 AM
Yes I am using 5mm white wire so it stands out a bit! Thinner green wire would work better, but nothing can be done about the coax!


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: W3LK on January 11, 2011, 01:27:30 PM
Yes I am using 5mm white wire so it stands out a bit! Thinner green wire would work better, but nothing can be done about the coax!

Sure you can; spray paint it whatever color you like.


Title: RE: First Contact made!!
Post by: K8AXW on January 13, 2011, 08:49:50 PM
Scotty:

I've been married for 51 years.  It seems that most wives protest or show displeasure with ham antennas.  Actually, it has been my observation living amoungst many married people, that women simply can't stand to see a guy having fun!

With that being said, may I suggest three things.  !-Wait her out....stand firm or as the Queen was once quoted when she told George Bush during a particularly difficult time in his presidency, "Don't get all wobbly!"  LOL.

2 -You could put up two more 'antennas' complete with coax......and when she starts complaining about them, tell her, "OK darling (or anything else that she might find believable) I'll take these two down but will leave the one up."  You will be compromising which should satisfy her.

3 - Try to get her involved with your hobby.  She might start to share your enthusiasam. This doesn't always work but you could give it a try.


Believe me, she will eventually get over it!


Rotsa Ruck

Al - K8AXW