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Author Topic: contesting  (Read 641 times)
KD8FDD
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Posts: 29




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« on: January 01, 2008, 10:20:20 AM »

I bought a yaseu ft-100d. I'm 14 yrs old and have had my teck license for about a year. I am really studying for general. When I get general will just a yaseu ft-100d with a normal supplied mic and a 30a ps, A wire antenna for the band i'm working the contest work to make contacts or will I need to spend 1,000$ for an amp and a mic {....} 73's
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K9NW
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Posts: 434




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« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2008, 12:19:53 PM »

Yes, you will make QSOs with your setup as is.  Much depends on what your wire antenna is and where it is located.  Your best bet will likely be domestic events like the North American QSO Parties but certainly you'll be able to work a little DX as well in DX oriented events.

Some real world examples:

 - For one NAQP I operated with 100w and a 10M dipole out on the balcony of my 2nd floor apartment.  I clipped a random 8 ft chunk of wire to one end to make the tuner in the radio happy and I was QRV on 10-40M.  I made just over 400 QSOs.

 - In another NAQP I operated from a friend's house with 100w and dipoles for 10-80 hung between stepladders and clothesline poles in the backyard.  I made over 500 QSOs.

My point here is that you can do quite a bit with simple a setup with the right motivation.  I didn't win the contest but I didn't expect to either.  However, I was able to participate in a meaningful way and have a bunch of fun.

I would suggest you look into a headset to replace the hand mic.  I use the Heil Pro-set - there are others.  This frees up your hands for logging, tuning, eating, etc.

Good luck, have fun and happy contesting!

Happy New Year!


73, Mike K9NW

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N8UZE
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Posts: 1524




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« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2008, 06:17:55 PM »

I've made several hundred contacts in a DX contest with a similar setup.  That won't win it but it sure is a lot of fun and is great for getting countries for awards.
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KC0SHZ
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Posts: 373




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« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2008, 06:39:58 AM »

I made a number of contacts in the CQWW, ARRL Sweepstakes, and the RAC Midwinter Contest using a G5RV, a 100 watt Icom 718, and it's stock microphone.

It is frustrating when working DX as there are alot of stations that I can hear that can't hear me or can't hear me through the pile-ups.

That said, when the frequency is relatively quiet, I have worked Japan, Spain, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Finland, and Lithuania from my home just since July.

Like previous posters say, you won't win contests, but you will get a lot of QSO's and have fun.
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N0IU
Member

Posts: 1245


WWW

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« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2008, 10:12:16 AM »

Jason,

Welcome to amateur radio!

Save your money. As a 14 year old young man, I promise you there will be MANY things going on in your life in the near future that will require plenty of money, namely:
1) Girls
2) Cars

Scott N0IU
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N4GVA
Member

Posts: 13




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« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2008, 11:27:24 PM »

While that station won't be a "contesters dream", part of the fun sometimes is making what you have work for you the best it and you can.  

I started contesting using a very bare-bones simple station with a now-aging Yaesu FT747, a G5RV strung through the trees about 30ft up, and an old MFJ-901 antenna tuner.  I did several RTTY and CW contests like that and did remarkably well (considering my experience level and meager station).

As I've gotten more interested in contesting I've also moved on to a more modern rig, but in roughly 14 hours of time in a 24-hour RTTY contest - this weekend I logged nearly 500 contacts and all but two states.  

Except in rare occasions using a QSO party I don't run SSB (I don't even leave a mic on the radio), so my experiences have been based on RTTY and CW - I've had a lot of fun with both types of contests too!
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NN3W
Member

Posts: 147




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« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2008, 08:35:40 AM »

Consider talking to the worldwide young contesters = www.wwyc.net

They're also live on IRC...

irc.efnet.org  in room #wwyc
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PD2R
Member

Posts: 131




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« Reply #7 on: January 25, 2008, 03:07:10 AM »

Hi Jason,

I’m a member of PI4COM which is a big gun station, by Dutch standards that is ;-) It is a lot of fun to do some contesting whit a group using the big amp’s , the big mono band beams and the big modern rigs. But I have also participated in the Worked All Europe contest last year from a holiday location in Denmark whit a simple setup, a FT 990 running 100 W into a windom at 30 ft. In stead of the original mike I used a Heill Pro Set plus for the reasons a previous poster stated.
I had a lot of fun working the big North American stations at the and of the contest. In the last couple of hours the big stations tend the rotated there beams a bit more to see if they can find any stations they haven’t  worked jet. At that point it will be much easier to work them because they are listening for you.
I think it’s best to use your station as it is and don’t spend more money on equipment. You can learn a lot and eventually become a better operator because it is not the amp that will make the difference but the operator.
If you do want to spend money, spend it on antennas because they will improve your station more than a $ 1000,- rig or amp. Get your antennas up as high as possible but of course you already know that.
Maybe there is a contest station near by where you can learn the ropes of a Elmer where you can participate in a contest or two, that’s how I got started.
Good luck and have fun!

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