I'm really surprised to see support for a band plan that has cw end above 7080. Jim and Scott, do you feel that the SKCC and FISTS are being "inconsiderate operators" with club slow code frequencies at 7014, 7118 es 7120?
I don't know exactly when it happened, but personally, I'm shocked to learn that the digital portion of the band plan was extended up from 7100 to the phone part. I think it's a very special piece of spectrum for beginners, qrp'rs, old timers that can't run anymore, guys running old gear, crystal controlled or direct conversion stuff, and people just trying to relax on a contest weekend.
The digital folks (whom I have to admit are doing some really cool and amazing stuff) don't even seem intersted in this part of the band. Why be so eager to give it away when they aren't even asking for it? I love the League, but think they made a serious error here.
From previous posts I know you guys to be really sharp and very knowledgeable and I'm probably missing something in your reasoning, so please don't in any way take my query as an attack.
Take very good care folks, Tom, AB9NZ, Mount Prospect, Il.
I wouldn't characterize myself as being particularly sharp or knowledgeable. Opinionated
is probably a better characterization.
My personal preference would be to see CW operators fully occupy the segment from
7000-7080 KHz; with the faster operating and DXing taking place in the bottom portion
of the range, and the more casual, friendly, QRP, boat anchor, and beginner CW operating
occuring between 7060-7080 KHz. For one thing, being adjacent to the rest of the CW
activity would make it more likely that beginners CQs would be answered. There are
many CW operators who never venture in the range above 7100.
I think it's important also to recognize that interest in the data modes is increasing, and
much of this data mode activity is taking place +/- 10 KHz of the RTTY DX window at
7040 KHz (whether it's actually contacts with DX or not). This has the effect of splitting
CW activity into 3 segments; below the RTTY DX window, above the RTTY DX window
but below about 7060 KHz, and then the FISTs/SKCC activity above 7100 KHz. A lot of
the data mode activity not around the RTTY DX window is above 7060 KHz and below
I just think we would all be better off; CW operators as well as data mode operators, to
consolidate our activities into contiguous segments; CW between 7000-7080 KHz, and data
between 7080-7125 KHz. In order to remove the data activity around 7040 KHz, data mode
enthusiasts need to be provided with somewhere to go. The range above 7100 would be
perfect for domestic data contacts and Winlink PMBOs. The RTTY DX window could be in
the lower portion of the data segment; 7080-7100 KHz. The recent expansion of 40 meters
in IARU Region 1 (from 7000-7100 KHz to 7000-7200 KHz), makes it possible to make this
I don't fault FISTs or SKCC for making use of the old Novice band. I have a sentimental
attachment to that range (I was WN5RMQ, and still have a couple FT-243 crystals in that
range), and I've operated in that range myself; both casually and in SKCC events. But I
think we would be better off making more full use of the range between 7060-7080 KHz,
and let the data enthusiasts enjoy the old Novice band, in return for less data mode
activity below 7080 KHz.