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Author Topic: I'm doing it wrong... or so I'm told  (Read 2646 times)
AD7C
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Posts: 81




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« on: June 06, 2011, 05:39:03 PM »

A few days ago I got the urge to play radio after not being 'on-air' for a few weeks.  I don't normally gripe but this one really boiled my blood.  I setup my station and dialed in 17 meters just before sunset here in AZ.  I had listened up on 15 meters and heard little if any calls so I figured I'd just start on 17 and see how it went.  I scanned through the phone section and heard a few QSO's in progress but nothing around 18.130.  I parked there and listened for a few minutes.

Hearing nothing I blurted out the usual  "Is this frequency is use?" and waited for a response.  Noting... so I went about and started calling CQ.  The noise floor was low and the band seemed dead but I held fast that SOMEBODY would be out there.  After a few minutes I did get a response but not one I was expecting.

A very strong signal jumped in right after my "CQ and listening for call" and informed me that I was "Doing it wrong!"  Slightly dumfounded I responded with a "Sorry! I didn't catch that.  Come again please!?"  Again I was greeted with a S9+20 signal and the clear statement in a grump voice, "You are doing it wrong!  You obviously are a new ham from CB land right? This is (Call removed to protect the inept)."

"I am not sure what you mean", I replied, "I don't now what Doing It Wrong mean?  I apologize if the frequency was in use but I didn't hear anybody and called clear to check." 

The grumble voiced explained, "I hear you calling CQ but you obviously don't hear the DX station on this frequency and the other 2k up that you are calling over top of.  Maybe you should sell your linear and get a better antenna because you obviously can't hear a darn thing."

I apologized and informed him I just could not hear the DX but I'll see what I can do to improve my reception.  I also let him know that I was sorry If I was conflicting with the DX.  I'd move to a clear frequency so I wouldn't impede his chance (or others) to contact them. 

The grumble came back, "If you're going to operate you better learn how it's done and not just power-over everyone.  You guys need to realize that more power is not always better.  I wonder how much I would have saved getting a better antenna and not the big bucks I paid for my linear.  Try lower power first."

I replied, "I'll see what I can do but I can't really go much lower as I am already QRP at 2.5W with my FT817, however, I probably can improve my 6' telescopic whip to hear a little better but it's just so easy to use sitting here in my backyard.   Enjoy the frequency... KE7SAK /QRP QSY"

"Did you say qrp?"
"Yes", I replied, "2.5 watts"... I waited and heard nothing but static after that.

Rich
KE7SAK
"QRP Super Station"


















 



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K7UNZ
Member

Posts: 691




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« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2011, 07:37:45 PM »

Hi Rich....

Can't really fault you on your procedure, I'm really more amazed that the "other guy", concerned as he was about qrm to a DX station, would blab away that long on the same freq.

Seems to me he was generating more QRM then you!

A short "The freq is in use OM" would have been more appropriate.

73,

Jim/k7unz
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N3OX
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Posts: 8854


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« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2011, 08:15:08 PM »

That's pretty funny Grin
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73,
Dan
http://www.n3ox.net

Monkey/silicon cyborg, beeping at rocks since 1995.
TANAKASAN
Member

Posts: 933




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« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2011, 02:56:12 AM »

The only thing I would have done differently is to ask if the frequency was in use more than once, but I don't think you did a thing wrong.

Tanakasan
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N0SYA
Member

Posts: 366




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« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2011, 06:08:13 AM »

We should have a net in the dx window!
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If you have a clumsy child, you make them wear a helmet. If you have death prone children, you keep a few clones of them in your lab.
N2EY
Member

Posts: 3877




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« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2011, 06:48:13 AM »

The problen is called "skip zone". You didn't do anything wrong.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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K1CJS
Member

Posts: 6012




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« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2011, 06:53:05 AM »

We should have a net in the dx window!

A net is a little too coarse for some of those little idiots.  Try a screen!   Grin
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KC2UGV
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Posts: 439




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« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2011, 10:38:42 AM »

"Did you say qrp?"
"Yes", I replied, "2.5 watts"... I waited and heard nothing but static after that.

Rich
KE7SAK
"QRP Super Station"

Priceless Smiley
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N1UK
Member

Posts: 1411




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« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2011, 11:22:51 AM »

I am sorry that you had to meet such an oaf on the air. I normally ask if the frequency is clear a couple of times and then if I hear nothing then I normally make a short CQ call. You would be amazed what that can troll up even though I have already asked if the frequency is clear.

I use Bandmaster and it displays the dx net spots on a radio dial type of display. This can often enable me to see a DX station even though I cannot hear him.

One morning I was trying to work a DX station on 80m cw. I was in the sweet spot, just after my sunrise and I could just copy the DXpedition on my sloper although there was nothing on my G5RV. I managed to put in one call before a couple of weak US stations started a slow speed ragchew on the frequency. By the time they had finished the sun was up and that was it for me. I never did work that DXpedition on 80m cw. If they had been looking at a spotting net they would have known that a very rare dxpedition was on that frequency.


73 Mark N1UK





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AD7C
Member

Posts: 81




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« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2011, 12:46:39 PM »

I never felt that I did anything wrong.  My post was not to validate my operating procedure but to show how some people just need to take the stick out of their... (you know what).

I'm very easy going and mostly just say "Sorry" and then turn-the-knob rather than waste my time arguing.  It's just that lately I've run into a LOT of grumpy hams and I've started to wonder.. is this my fate?   Do all hams eventually become a 'grumpy op!'  Those who roam the bands searching for rare dx, claiming space on 75 meters, and informing all of the rules only known to the few!

Kill me now.  :-)

73,

Rich
KE7SAK

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N2EY
Member

Posts: 3877




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« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2011, 12:49:24 PM »

It's just that lately I've run into a LOT of grumpy hams and I've started to wonder.. is this my fate?   Do all hams eventually become a 'grumpy op!' 

No, they don't.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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K1CJS
Member

Posts: 6012




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« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2011, 03:37:41 PM »

Some of it is the curse of the internet.  It is way too easy to look up the callsign one hears on the bands and see when the license was upgraded.  If it is after the date the code test was dropped, some of the long time hams will automatically turn up their noses, and you'll get a snippy answer--if you get an answer at all.
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KG4YMC
Member

Posts: 297




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« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2011, 08:55:49 PM »

Rich, had to laugh when you said 25 watts ,wonder if he had fussed at me tearing up the band with my ten watts ncg qrp type rig. Tell him it must be that 20 db gain you  get from the g5rv hi hi . also, no code generals just sound louder. But seriouly , sounds like you did ok, if it mean anything I have heard old mans calling cq at least l0 times before even getting around to callsign.I have been guilty of tuning up on 7.300 40 meter and not asking if radio moscow would mind my ten watts for two second tuneups, know I was really putting the hurting on them . try l5 and 40 , think most operators are kind, and glad you took the high road with him . old experaince ham should know about propgation and skip path, it may have in fact been clear werre you are, sounds like you may proper effort , old geezer needs pune  juice , drop me e mail  and will try for l5 . Now if he wants to fush at high power splattering italian stations , guess who . I am l6 miles from milain italy , know his splattting speal by heart.... on 40
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KE3WD
Member

Posts: 5694




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« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2011, 07:16:01 AM »

Trolls are everywhere and the best medicine is to ignore the trolls, for it is the attention that they seem to feed on. 

Turn the Big Knob and find another frequency, hope they don't follow you. 

Sometimes, changing band without lettin' the troll know where you are going can leave 'em where they were. 


Don't let anybody steal your joy.


73
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WG7X
Member

Posts: 350




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« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2011, 08:30:38 AM »

Rich,

I waited a bit to see what other advice that you would get before I added my two cents.

But here's the thing: In a way, you WERE doing it wrong.

Using the small whip, you probably would not hear some of the stations that were already on that particular frequency. Adding to the problem is that 2.5 watts into a small whip would probably not be heard either.

So the problem has two aspects, inefficient antenna and low power. If someone actually heard you strongly enough to scold you, he was either a local, or the propagation that evening was just right.

Now, in now way shape or form am I saying what the other operator did was correct. Not at all. Alpha-hotels are everywhere.

Successful QRP operators usually operate CW because of the superior signal to noise ratio, or tune through a band looking for strong stations to answer. Both strategies work. Calling CQ, especially on a band like twenty meters is for the strong at heart, not necessarily the strong of signal!

I applaud your efforts and wish you all success, but really QRP operations are usually not for beginners. That is because you will run across the type of situation you described more often than not, and your 2.5 watt signal into a small whip will be lost in the noise most times. A low power signal into a decent antenna is a different equation and offers a better chance of success.

I don't know if you are operating QRP from choice or by necessity, but in either case, be prepared to be ignored, stepped on, and otherwise disrespected in your daily operation. That's for the simple reason that most folks will simply not hear you.

There are dedicated QRP frequencies on most HF bands. A Google search will tell you where they are. You will quickly see that most of them are also CW frequencies. Again, that is because for a given power level, CW is much superior to SSB for getting through and being heard. Simple fact. Also most QRP CW operators are fairly slow about it for the same reason. Accuracy trumps speed in this case.

So good luck with the QRP and if that is actually your preferred mode of operation, start building antennas!

73 Gary
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