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Author Topic: Venting: QRP calling frequency misuse  (Read 23735 times)
VK3YE
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« Reply #30 on: August 16, 2016, 03:49:34 AM »

I have been monitoring 14.285 for the past week. Nothing not even a reply to my CQs.

Search & Pounce definitely the way to go.  Every time I turn the radio on:

1. Tune around for stations calling CQ & call them
2. If no stations calling CQ, listen for contacts about to end and try to gauge their intentions.  Once you're sure they've finished call one of them.
3. Only if repeated application of the above fails to result in a contact after 15 min or more of tuning and listening should one call CQ.
4. A few CQ calls is often not good enough - you may need to call for 15 min or more.  
5. If that still fails repeat 1-4 again.  

QRP, especially on 14 MHz, is a hunt and pounce game.  The reason for no activity on 14.285 is because other QRPers have also discovered this.  

I don't think it's fair for QRPers to expect other amateurs to keep clear of so-called calling frequencies they hardly use.

I don't mind the concept of QRP centres of activity where lots of QRPers happen to congregate around certain frequencies but it needs to be backed up by activity.


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Peter VK3YE

One ham radio post each day. Visit http://dailyantenna.blogspot.com
Author of top selling $US 5 amateur radio ebooks on antennas, QRP, getting started and more. See http://home.alphalink.com.au/~parkerp/vk3yebooks.htm
KC2QYM
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« Reply #31 on: August 16, 2016, 07:31:44 AM »

How many times do stations running over QRP power announce themselves as such in order to get in front of the pileups?  Let's be honest, this happens more often than many will admit.  That being the case, I don't believe that there should be dedicated band segments simply based on power simply because it can't be enforced by anybody.  There are enough problems between hams who don't understand how much bandwidth separation they must maintain let alone how much power they should or shouldn't use on whatever designated frequency to operate on.  We should be happy just to be able to get hams to operate in the right modes in those designated band spaces.
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KK4YDR
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« Reply #32 on: August 16, 2016, 09:59:46 AM »

I am tired of two things...

QRP stations that call QRP at the end of their callsign. Honestly QRP is defined as a term that lets stations know that you are reducing power, not operating in reduced power. How this came to be is beyond me. It is a CW code anyways. It grinds my gears to hear people using Q codes on phone conversations. Just say what you are doing. Im gonna switch frequencies as opposed to im going to QSY or I am going to reduce power to 5 watts instead of im gonna qrp or I heard you and I agree instead of QSL all the time. Sigh.... people don't want to learn to use morse but they sure will use the stupid Q codes in phone conversations.

I can be a battery operated station using 50 watts and I still do not call QRP. I will call low power if I am going to reduce from 50 watts to 1 watt or whatever as an informative gesture.

I believe that just because you are running low power doesn't mean you should be someone special who has to call it out every single time you CQ.

Radio is radio and there is no defined standard power level that makes you some QRP special station.

As far as I and many others concern it, QRP might as well be 1000 watts to someone running 1500 watts or 1 watt to someone running 5 watts.

Just another pet peave. And a band plan is not a law or a rule for that matter. It is just a community agreement of organized usage of a given set of frequency ranges.

However, there  are rules as set by governing authorities such as technicians having to stay on 10 meters for phone ops etc....

And what really grinds my gears is the fact that everyone thinks running QRP is some special mode of phone operations that you have to have a special station for.... WRONG as defined by the FCC we should be using the lowest power possible to maintain a good communication and no more. But running amplifiers have become the standard defacto method of operation, thus making anything lower than 100 watts seem taboo or extremely special?Huh I would rather run 5 watts to get a 59 but it rarely happens, especially given the solar cycle null were in. I do run 1500 watts but most of the time I run 6-900 on my legal limit amplifier. However, I also run 5 watts on my 817 but I do not think of my self as a QRP station. I think of my self as a station running low power that has the ability to lower my power even more thus qrp'ing.


Imagine if every HAM called /qrp on 2 meter repeater work or everyone that had a Baofeng radio calling QRP when they are running low power. It would be the most annoying thing just like stations that say ...... "AB1CDE for ID". I can stand that. Why is low power on HF considered QRP but not VHF? What defines QRP For each method of operating? That is not a question. Please don't say hi hi on the air in phone either. My god.  Or worse yet people that give 60 over reports to stations coming through a repeater. sigh .....
« Last Edit: August 16, 2016, 10:08:45 AM by KK4YDR » Logged
WB2WIK
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Posts: 21836




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« Reply #33 on: August 16, 2016, 02:42:41 PM »

Last week I bought a Yaesu FT-817ND from DX Engineering.  I'm low on testosterone so their sale price plus the rebate from Yaesu sucked me in.  Today I tried it on 20 meters on the designated 20 meter QRP frequency using battery power and 2.5 watts.  I didn't hear any one so after questioning if the frequency was in use, I tried a CQ.  I then got a response that the frequency was in use from a strong signal.  I listened and found out it was from a 1X2 call sign, which I wrote down, but won't mention, and he was in Colorado (I'm in Texas) and running a 1,000 watts.  Seriously?  why do we have a band plan? 

Do we need a forum called "Toads" where we list the call signs, date and time, of these lids?


It's not liddish to run as much power as one wishes to run, legally.

To me 14.060 is just another frequency where mostly slower speed ops hang out...a lot of "SKCC" stuff.

And I operate CW every day, as I have for most days (probably 90% of all days) since the mid-1960s.   Over 300,000 CW QSOs in 51 years.

Here's a fun fact:  In my experience a LOT of QRP ops can't hear well at all.   It's very common for me to answer a station who tells me he's QRP on his very first transmission, so I figure, "Great, I'll go QRP also and have a QRP to QRP contact."   So, I dial it back to 5W and the other station loses me entirely (even though I hear him fine at 5W).   So, I dial it back up to 100W and now he hears me again.

On 20m I use a beam at 55 feet and have a very low noise level.

Almost every single day what I described does indeed occur.   And many stations tell me they're using KX3s, K3s, etc -- so I know their receivers are "laboratory good."  The problem may be cockpit error, or even more likely just local noise levels.   Mine is very low (usually S1 on 20m, depends a bit on beam heading); if yours isn't, you're not going to hear me as well as I hear you.

When working some QRP stations, I find they don't answer many signals I hear fine.   Common for me to hear a QRP op call CQ, get three answers, then call CQ again.   When I finally call with a kilowatt, they respond. Cheesy
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W7ASA
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Posts: 542




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« Reply #34 on: August 16, 2016, 05:56:39 PM »

Your Great antenna and a low noise location go a very long way. As the old saying goes : 'a good antenna is the best amplifier' as you also pointed-out: local noise level is critical. I used to routinely keep a sked with a /mm out on the other side of the Pacific, using my QRP rig, but 2 Watts from a Rocky Mountakn ridge long to his ham set in the ocean is what made that work: none of the residential electronics around to ruin reception, and frankly: he was a very good Op.

73 de Ray ...-  .-
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K0OD
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Posts: 3029




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« Reply #35 on: August 17, 2016, 07:18:30 AM »

I hate when posters repeatedly say, "what really grinds my gears," unless perhaps when a robot says it.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2016, 10:21:44 AM by K0OD » Logged
W8GP
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Posts: 353




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« Reply #36 on: August 17, 2016, 09:33:53 AM »

I have been operating 5W QRP for 46 years and I have never (intentionally) made a contact on any QRP calling frequency.
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WB4M
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Posts: 326




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« Reply #37 on: August 20, 2016, 08:37:13 AM »

Well. the ham in question might not have been aware of a QRP frequency.  Right off the top of my head I could not tell you all of the SSTV gathering holes.   Just like FISTS or SKCC have their designated frequencies but unless you are in those clubs I seriously doubt you know them all.
Secondly, he may have been in a QSO with a QRP station that you couldn't hear.   Nobody owns any frequency or has any particular rights to a certain frequency.  You can run 1KW on 14.060 if you want, some guys like to work QRP stations even though they are not low power themselves.   You also can run QRP anywhere on 20 meters you want.  I've had a FT-817ND for over 2 years now and you will really enjoy it.
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WB4M
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« Reply #38 on: August 20, 2016, 08:46:55 AM »

I'll ask again. What is the CURRENT worldwide 20 meter QRP frequency and can someone provide a link to it? 

The suggested QRP frequency for CW on 20 meters is 14.060.   Try a Google search for SSB and CW QRP frequencies for all the bands.
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N8YX
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Posts: 1339




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« Reply #39 on: August 30, 2016, 03:19:11 PM »

I have been operating 5W QRP for 46 years and I have never (intentionally) made a contact on any QRP calling frequency.
2-10w here, depending on rig...I just call CQ or respond to one and away I go. Most times I only mention power levels after I exchange station info with the other op.
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NN4RH
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Posts: 544




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« Reply #40 on: September 04, 2016, 06:43:07 AM »

Last week I bought a Yaesu FT-817ND from DX Engineering.  I'm low on testosterone so their sale price plus the rebate from Yaesu sucked me in.  Today I tried it on 20 meters on the designated 20 meter QRP frequency using battery power and 2.5 watts.  I didn't hear any one so after questioning if the frequency was in use, I tried a CQ.  I then got a response that the frequency was in use from a strong signal.  I listened and found out it was from a 1X2 call sign, which I wrote down, but won't mention, and he was in Colorado (I'm in Texas) and running a 1,000 watts.  Seriously?  why do we have a band plan?  

Do we need a forum called "Toads" where we list the call signs, date and time, of these lids?


Was this CW or SSB?  

Apparently you had a QSO anyway, right, if you found out that he was in Texas and running 1000 Watts.

As someone else mentioned, it's a good sign that anyone even heard your 2.5 Watts. Especially if this was on SSB QRP. If it was CW QRP not such a big deal.


As for "frequency in use".  Maybe it was.  20 meter propagation is such that you might not be able to hear everyone who is in QSO on the frequency.  

As for "qrp calling frequency".  You don't own it. The band plan is just a suggestion.  Especially on SSB on 20 meters you can't realistically expect anyone else to NOT use the frequency. And especially especially if there was a contest on.
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W2UIS
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Posts: 130




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« Reply #41 on: September 08, 2016, 06:53:08 AM »

Yesterday afternoon (9/7/16) two ham were having a nice long QSO in 14.285. First activity on this frequency in ages.
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W2UIS
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Posts: 130




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« Reply #42 on: September 08, 2016, 07:19:24 AM »

I wish my fellow Hams would understand that the ARRL Band Plans are not FCC rules.
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W2UIS
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« Reply #43 on: September 12, 2016, 05:43:32 PM »

Conducted my net on 14.285 yesterday without any complaints from the contesters who were using the frequency through out the weekend.
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W3ATT
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Posts: 8




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« Reply #44 on: October 04, 2016, 07:07:50 AM »

This happens often on 40 meters 7.030 - and I can only assume that many ops don't know or care about qrp watering holes. It's not a crime to use QRO on those frequencies, it's just the plain fact that they don't know and have not read about or heard about it.

I've already looked up the op on QRZ and sent a POLITE email explaining. You'd be surprised at how well it is received.
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