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Author Topic: How do you keep record of QSO's.  (Read 5497 times)
N8TI
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Posts: 115




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« on: February 21, 2012, 09:19:50 PM »

Hello. I was curious if anyone was like me and kept a notebook in which they wrote down the entire QSO. After pounding on the computer at work all day, I like to use a pen or pencil and write on nice paper, sometimes with a fountain pen, so I buy up fancy desk book calendars in late January for a dollar or two each. I get them with leather covers and parchment-like paper. Calendars don't hold their value very long after the year gets going.

 Then, I use the books for QSO's and transfer the various facts to my log later on. Obviously, i just ignore the date information  Unfortunately, I'm not on the air enough to fill up a lot of them. This year, however, I'm more active.

That method helps when filling out QSL cards sometimes weeks later.

Joe N8TI
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N3QE
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Posts: 2093




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« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2012, 11:40:58 PM »

Most of us are used to the old paper logbooks with columns for time, date, power, freq/band, his call, his name, his qth, and some room for other notes/comments.

When I'm using computer logging programs I tend to keep similar notes.

In most computer logging programs when you have future QSO's, the name and qth fields might pop up immediately which is a nice touch, with a list of past band/dates of past QSO's.

Some go as far as recording the audio of each and every QSO by computer. I can kinda see how in some uber-analytical sense maybe this could be useful but I'd rather just keep my notes and use them in future QSO's, rather than listen to old QSO's :-).
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WA9FZB
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« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2012, 07:59:54 AM »

I, too, keep a paper log of pertinent contact information, but I do not keep all the QSO notes from the contacts.  I only write down pertinent information, usually using a gel roller ball pen.  I find that I can write faster with these than I can with most of my fountain pens (also an "accumulator" with 50-60 pens).  Also, if I write QSO notes with a fountain pen, I often get ink on my hands as the ink will take a while to dry.

QSL cards, on the other hand, I often letter with a fountain pen, as I have for 40+ years.  It isn't a "real" pen unless it drinks ink from a bottle!
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KB4MB
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Posts: 295




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« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2012, 08:07:46 AM »

This is not me, but Jack Wagoner WB8FSV on his excellent page "A Beginners Guide to Making CW Contacts" writes down every word and saves his books:

Quote
While I am in contact with another station CW station, I take notes. In fact I write down every word sent by the other ham. Mainly this is because I have a memory like a screendoor in a submarine! But I recommend at least noting the main points made by the other station, so that you will remember what to comment on during your next transmission. I circle with my pen those items I want to remember to bring up next go around.

I am kind of strange in that I save all these notes I've taken during my QSOs, going back 30 years. Really. It is absolutely fascinating to go back through my notes and read, word for word, what I talked about when I was a novice 29 years ago

Me, I am trying to head copy, so I am actually trying NOT to write down anything - but sometimes I still have to.  I use a computer log...
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K3STX
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« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2012, 10:39:09 AM »

It isn't a "real" pen unless it drinks ink from a bottle!

This is COMPLETELY true. Amen, brother!


But I do log every QSO in a paper log book (except contest QSOs) but only write stuff like name, QTH, and one other "reminder" of the QSO. Writing down every word would get really old really fast.

paul
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2012, 11:05:43 AM »

I keep a log and record date-time-band-mode-callsign worked-other op's name and maybe his location, and that's all I ever record.

Write down a whole QSO?  Holy cow.  I've never done that.

When I used to do some "traffic handling" back in the 60s-early 70s we had to write down everything copied as you never knew what might be very important to another party, so precise 100% copy was pretty much required.  I stopped doing that a really long time ago. Cheesy
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KB3TXH
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Posts: 44




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« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2012, 07:02:12 AM »

I do. I can't head copy, so I have to write down what the contact is saying to me, for
it to make sense.
I use inexpensive notebooks about $1.00 per 100 pages.
 I also keep a paper log of contacts to check for previous QSO's with a call that seems familiar.

I actually used Ham Radio Deluxe as a logger for a short time, but I did not like the feel of it.

I guess I am more of a minimalist. It works for me
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K7KBN
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Posts: 2765




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« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2012, 08:15:46 AM »

I use the old ARRL Log Book, and I transfer QSO data from there into my Logic 8 program every week or two.

For filling out QSLs, if my muse is awake, I'll drag out my calligraphy pens and do a reasonably painstaking job on that.  It's a nice little skill I've picked up in the past few years.  Really impresses the kids where I volunteer at school.

Of course, they think "cursive" is taught only at Hogwarts....
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
AK7V
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Posts: 249




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« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2012, 08:27:35 AM »

I run Logic 8 (soon I'll install Logic 9, which I just received in the mail) on my computer when I'm operating.  So I log directly into the program.  It's nice because it has a connection to my radio, so it records the frequency/mode automatically.  Also uploads/downloads from LoTW.

I used to use a paper ARRL log.  There were also lots of QSOs that I didn't log at all.  I'm trying to get into the whole QSLing thing, so I started a LoTW account and bought a bunch of QSL cards to send out.  I don't have DXCC, don't even have WAS (moved a lot, so while I have all the states confirmed one way or another, they're from different QTHs).  I'd like to try and get some awards.  Been a ham long enough... Wink

I, too, fill out my QSL cards with a fountain pen.
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W7AIT
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Posts: 488




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« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2012, 10:10:35 AM »

I use plain old ARRL paper logbooks, pen and ink entries. 

All the fangled computer logs I have tried are too complex, have way to many features I don't want, require weeks of study to learn how to use, don't work, don't work with LOTW, or there is a licensing issue (the HRD / QRZ database problem), so I remain faithful to good old paper log books and pen and ink.  Yes I can't find things very easily but at least I can find them!

Besides, my paper log also doubles as a engineering notebook of sorts as I have ONE place to make quick ink drawings of designs, data or other such data.
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KE7WAV
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Posts: 126




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« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2012, 09:33:10 PM »

I use cheap composition books its fun to read some of the contacts later on.
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K0TF
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Posts: 1




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« Reply #11 on: February 24, 2012, 08:51:18 AM »

Hello. I was curious if anyone was like me and kept a notebook in which they wrote down the entire QSO.
Joe N8TI
I'm guessing, you never run pile ups at 3-4 QSOs a minute, and 2000-4000 QSOs a week-end? CW only here, and NO macros, keyer only.
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KB4MB
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Posts: 295




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« Reply #12 on: February 24, 2012, 10:19:40 AM »

I'm guessing, you never run pile ups at 3-4 QSOs a minute, and 2000-4000 QSOs a week-end? CW only here, and NO macros, keyer only.

Well those qsos would only say 599 TU page after page.. it would look like the book in The Shining. Smiley
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W5DQ
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WWW

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« Reply #13 on: February 24, 2012, 10:28:35 AM »


It isn't a "real" pen unless it drinks ink from a bottle!

AND comes from a goose!!!!!!

I use a computer to log and a scratch pad for taking notes, jotting down ideas and other stuff. I date each page and then I file the pages away after I finish the pads. I have found I needed to go back to the pad and find errors in my log when calls don't match, etc. Valuable pieces of info that's why I save them.

Gene W5DQ
« Last Edit: February 24, 2012, 10:31:20 AM by W5DQ » Logged

Gene W5DQ
Ridgecrest, CA - DM15dp
www.radioroom.org
AD9DX
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Posts: 1472




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« Reply #14 on: February 24, 2012, 05:23:23 PM »

A few caveats first: I am only 30 (so I have grown up with computers) and I am a newer ham licensed for a year.

I am still in the learning faze of CW but I tent to head copy.  Then upload the basics to N3FJP's logging program.  But the original post from N8TI sounds like a blast.  I agree after pounding a keyboard all day at work having the tactical feel of a pen-to paper sounds like heaven.  I am going to have to try that as soon as the crazy SSB folks get off the lower part of my absolutely favorite band (160).  I am by no means good at CW yet, but have truly developed a passion for the mode... Thanks for the great idea.
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EX, KC9TRM, KB9IRZ
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