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eHam Forums => DXing => Topic started by: AD9DX on March 31, 2013, 05:05:58 PM



Title: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: AD9DX on March 31, 2013, 05:05:58 PM
So there was a comment made on another thread that was discussing that 4L4FN is down in the history books because he activated P5. But he isn't considered a great DXer. What does everyone think makes a great DXer?


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: K6UJ on March 31, 2013, 05:36:59 PM

At first thought it might be attaining DXCC or other DX awards, but my take on a "great" DXer is someone that spends time helping other DXers achieve their DX goals.
It might be:
Being on a DXpedition team.
Giving seminars on antennas, and the many technical facets DXers use.
Helping other DXers install antennas, set up their stations.
Elmering new DXers.
There are more categories that come to mind, but helping other DXers is what promotes a good DXer to a great DXer.   

Bob
K6UJ


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: N6PSE on March 31, 2013, 05:56:01 PM
A great DXer is one who has a sustained passion for DX. It's not about awards or wall paper. I know some great DXers who have never applied for anything beyond DXCC, yet they exhibit a complete passion about chasing DX or being the DX.

Their passion is so strong that it rubs off on others. They openly share their ideas, views and techniques in order to help others and to promote this great hobby!


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: AD9DX on March 31, 2013, 06:05:11 PM
I hove those two answers.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: W5TD on March 31, 2013, 08:20:40 PM
Based on the other answers, 3 immediately come to mind, based on their operating skill, the way they handle pileups, and the countries they have traveled to to give us DXers new countries.  They would be

DJ6SI
OH2BH
G3SXW

There are plenty more but those three quickly came to mind

John AF5CC


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: KY6R on March 31, 2013, 08:38:35 PM
The person who enjoys DX-ing, and who meets their own challenges and accomplishments.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: KE4KY on April 01, 2013, 01:34:14 AM

At first thought it might be attaining DXCC or other DX awards, but my take on a "great" DXer is someone that spends time helping other DXers achieve their DX goals.
It might be:
Being on a DXpedition team.
Giving seminars on antennas, and the many technical facets DXers use.
Helping other DXers install antennas, set up their stations.
Elmering new DXers.
There are more categories that come to mind, but helping other DXers is what promotes a good DXer to a great DXer.   

Bob
K6UJ

A great DXer is one who has a sustained passion for DX. It's not about awards or wall paper. I know some great DXers who have never applied for anything beyond DXCC, yet they exhibit a complete passion about chasing DX or being the DX.

Their passion is so strong that it rubs off on others. They openly share their ideas, views and techniques in order to help others and to promote this great hobby!


You can't get a more rounded, yet complete answer than that.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: WD4ELG on April 01, 2013, 05:31:24 AM
1. Living the DX Code of Conduct

2. Giving back to the DX part of the hobby (QSL manager, Elmer, article author, belonging to a DX club, etc.)

3. Getting on the air


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: KY6R on April 01, 2013, 06:19:35 AM
As far as "naming names", I look at the first page in each category of the DXCC standings. I also think that anyone who organizes a DX-Pedition is a great dxer. Those top ops running pileups on  a DX-ped are also my hero's, especially those who ask for West Coast - hi hi.

I know that all of these people are having fun dx-ing.

73,

Rich
KY6R


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: N3QVB on April 01, 2013, 06:21:11 AM
Operating skills.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: AB8MA on April 01, 2013, 06:45:44 AM
Vlad UA4WHX


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: KD8MJR on April 01, 2013, 04:18:14 PM
What! Now you want my Parents Names!  ;D ;D ;)


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: N1UK on April 02, 2013, 08:21:41 AM
Tongue in cheek.....

Understand what split means and know how to use your transceiver in split mode

Try not to transmit when the dx is transmitting

Do not call the DX when he is working someone else.

Raise you dipole higher than 15 feet above the ground.

Try to not tune up on the DX frequency

anymore....



Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: W6GX on April 02, 2013, 08:31:04 AM
Tongue in cheek.....

Understand what split means and know how to use your transceiver in split mode

Try not to transmit when the dx is transmitting

Do not call the DX when he is working someone else.

Raise you dipole higher than 15 feet above the ground.

Try to not tune up on the DX frequency

anymore....

Great post.  This eliminates a bunch of folks as a great DXer.  Sad but true.

73,
Jonathan W6GX


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: WS3N on April 02, 2013, 05:45:13 PM
I know what doesn't.

A few hours ago, I saw a spot for VK9CZ on 14.155, listening up 5. I hit the spot and the split is automatically set. Really handy. Well, I hear nothing, so I go about my business. I eat dinner, watch the news, whatever. No radio for a couple of hours. Then I see a spot for an FK on 10m PSK. I'm trying to see how many I can work on digital this year. (I'm not going to dignify my effort by calling it Marathon). I need FK, so I hit the spot. I call through maybe half a dozen QSO cycles but can't get through. What's wrong here? I can hear him really well. Then I notice the split box is checked. I move the multi-decode window out of the way and see VFO B is still on the last split frequency. Ugh. I have been merrily transmitting my call with PSK on 14.260! I love DXLab but this is one "feature" I can do without. Actually, it's probably just me misusing the program. RTFM.

I will now crawl back under my rock.  :-[

(Yes, I did get my FK.)


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: N3YZ on April 02, 2013, 05:52:23 PM
A great listener.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: W2IRT on April 02, 2013, 07:53:00 PM
One who understands propagation, paths, when and where to listen (and transmit), has a good enough station to be competitive in the pileups and who doesn't whine when self-imposed limits deny him/her a QSO. Someone who's generous with his/her time in elmering new DXers and contesters, generous with money in supporting DXpeditions as finances allow, doesn't take out his/her frustrations on the air when things aren't going well or play frequency cop. Someone who will lend a hand to help a friend build a better station, fix a broken station or learn tips and techniques. Someone who will help another less-savvy DXer work that rare one, give him a QSX via back-channels, suggest calling patterns or other similar tips. Someone who'll analyze QSLing problems and point out the ways to sure-fire confirmation success.

I've been on the receiving end and the giving end of all of these and while I'll probably never be a Great DXer, at least I like to think I've learned a lot and helped ignite the spark of DXing in the minds of a number of new hams. We can't all be Martti Laine, Gus Browning, Sigi, Apollo or any of the other wealthy, skilled and well-travelled DXpeditioners who put new ones on the air for The Deserving, but we can do our part in making the big (and not-so-big) DXpeditions a success by working 'em, QSLing 'em, supporting them and trying to emulate their best traits.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: W6GX on April 02, 2013, 09:42:08 PM
One who understands propagation, paths, when and where to listen (and transmit), has a good enough station to be competitive in the pileups and who doesn't whine when self-imposed limits deny him/her a QSO. Someone who's generous with his/her time in elmering new DXers and contesters, generous with money in supporting DXpeditions as finances allow, doesn't take out his/her frustrations on the air when things aren't going well or play frequency cop. Someone who will lend a hand to help a friend build a better station, fix a broken station or learn tips and techniques. Someone who will help another less-savvy DXer work that rare one, give him a QSX via back-channels, suggest calling patterns or other similar tips. Someone who'll analyze QSLing problems and point out the ways to sure-fire confirmation success.

I've been on the receiving end and the giving end of all of these and while I'll probably never be a Great DXer, at least I like to think I've learned a lot and helped ignite the spark of DXing in the minds of a number of new hams. We can't all be Martti Laine, Gus Browning, Sigi, Apollo or any of the other wealthy, skilled and well-travelled DXpeditioners who put new ones on the air for The Deserving, but we can do our part in making the big (and not-so-big) DXpeditions a success by working 'em, QSLing 'em, supporting them and trying to emulate their best traits.

Two thumbs up.  Pete, for as short of a time I've known you, I truly consider you a great DX'er.

73,
Jonathan W6GX


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: KD8MJR on April 02, 2013, 10:38:41 PM
I am not a great Dxer but some things that have really helped me get to 280 in 4 years while working a crazy 10-12 hour day (M-F).

The Basics

1) Learn and follow the DX rules of conduct.  You can quickly be blacklisted by a Dxpedition or DX station if you don’t.  That means you will waste many hours trying to work someone who will never respond.

2) Understand propagation from A-Z

3) Keep a proper Log and make sure to join LoTW.

4) Have a proper printed copy of your LoTW complete dx list right by your radio so you can instantly see what you have and what you need. I write in all the QSL cards I get back on the list and always reference it when I find a station/location I am not sure of.

5) Listen Listen and Listen before Talking.

6) When in doubt if a station is an ATNO don't hesitate just work it.  I let a few slip from my fingers because I was trying to figure out what entity the call was from, by the time I realized what was in front of me a huge pileup had started. I remember the first time that happened it was a VK9 station, I thought it was Australia and hesitated.

7) Make sure you scout through every competition.  That can be a great source during the pre 200 mark for making ATNO’s and a bonus is that most are on LoTW so you get quick confirmation.


After about 240 entities it starts getting harder and with current propagation you may need more equipment.

1) A Better Antenna!  The best you can obtain given your QTH and situation.  A good Yagi will help more than anything else and will make just about anything possible.

2) A better radio that has really good receive sensitivity and if possible a bandscope.

3) An Amp of at least 500 Watts will be needed to bust through pileups.

4) Proper grounding helped me a lot.  It can reduce the noise floor and make life safer and easier.

5) Have as many Digital modes available in your shack and be proficient at them.  You may get many new ones via those modes (I know you have them already but I am including it as a general rule) BTW listen to the mp3s that are on the net that contain samples of how different digital modes sound. That can make life a lot easier.

After 270 it starts to become a waiting game so you need to really pay attention to the following.

1) Make sure you keep current on all the DX news.  I take a look at it every day.

2) Make sure to write down the times when the propagation will be best to the Target DX from your QTH and try to be ready and waiting at those times.

3) If you don’t hear them but see them listed on the cluster just keep listening.  I browse the net or reply to emails for an hour or so while I just listen.  I think I have at least 10 ATNO in the Log that just came in suddenly for a few minutes and went away just after I worked them!  QSB is a strange beast; it will sometimes work in your favor and make a station pop out of the ether.

4) CW will really be needed to keep the numbers growing and would be a good thing to know from day one but if you’re unwilling you can try your hand at CW Decoder and one of the software/hardware methods of sending CW via the PC.  Yes a lot of people will disagree with this but I can tell you from first hand experience that a rank amateur CW guy like myself will never make it through to a rare one without some form of aid.  I can’t decipher 25WPM and even if I could you got to be a dedicated CWer to make out what’s going on through the Nut Jobs and Lids that plague the rare ones.

From what I have read from the really great guys on this forum is that it would seem that after about 310 what you need is all of the above plus a Long Life, lots of patience and good luck to get the rest.

I am sure others will point out any mistakes in what I have written and you would be wise to follow their advice.

73’s
Robert



Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: WA8UEG on April 03, 2013, 06:12:40 AM
One who listens first, confirms call and operating parameters of the station then thinks and plans prior to ever pressing the mic button or key.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: N2RJ on April 03, 2013, 06:28:43 AM
I like N6PSE's explanation best. A great DXer doesn't have to be at the top of the honor roll.
Quite honestly, getting there is a matter of time because DXing is mostly a game of waiting it out. If you notice, most of the guys on honor roll have been in the game a long time. They have been in it long enough to see many rare entities activated including P5 and KP1. But if you have any sort of station you can achieve DXCC and other DX awards. DX is a marathon for most people, not a sprint.

But passion for DXing and the DX chase is all that you need to be a great DXer.

There is also style. It's easy to just be a cluster crab and pick off spots from the cluster. But the thrill of the chase is often finding the DX by tuning across the bands or simply calling CQ. Some of my best catches have been out of the blue - ZD8I is the most memorable, with him having responded to my CQ on PSK31. But I don't begrudge anyone from using the cluster as I do it myself. But I do admire people who are able to do it the old fashioned way.

Peter mentioned Martti Laine. He is the complete package. Knowledgeable, technical, a good operator, a great teacher and mentor and also a great DX ambassador, quite literally. Also has the means to get entities on the air and convince people and Governments to grant permission to land and operate.  THAT to me is what makes a great DXer.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: KY6R on April 05, 2013, 11:01:26 AM
Vlad UA4WHX

I agree. I think Vlad is the epitome of a great DX-er. He travels the globe Microlite Penguin style and has the best ears. He has given out more different and rare counters than anyone. He has the best QSL cards.

And he has never tried to coerce the ARRL into changing the DXCC rules to have a new entity added..

He just goes out there and kicks butt.


Title: RE: So what makes a "great" DXer?
Post by: IK0OZD on April 05, 2013, 12:11:51 PM
g3txf g3sxw ua4whx and others like them ,
This kind of people is very nice