pix_logo01 (5K)NAQCC News

Aug 25, 2007NAQCC Web Site Issue #053

In this issue:
1. September Challenge.
2. August Sprint Results
3. Latest Bear Hunt News
4. Featured Award of the Month
4a. Latest Award Winners
5. General Club News
6. Member News

1. CHALLENGE: Our September 2-4-10-20 Challenge is a rather simple, non-complicated one. Just make 30 QRP QSO's during the month using at least 4 different bands. 10 regular QSO's and 20 contest QSO's in at least 2 different contests. Everyone who completes the challenge and reports their results according to the rules is entered into a drawing to win a beautiful hand-crafted set of bug or paddle handle pieces donated by their maker Gregg, WB8LZG. Only one set can be won by any one person as they become ineligible after winning a set. Gregg prefers that NAQCC officers are also eligible for his pieces, so those officers who wish to be included in the drawing will be. Because of that, Gregg himself will do the drawings in a random method of his choosing to avoid any conflict of interest. Here is one variety of the pieces. Click here to see more.

pix_051_paddle_handle (33K)

If you have an idea for a challenge, please let us know and we'll consider it.

Full Challenge info here.

pix_newsletterline_new (2K)

2. AUGUST SPRINT RESULTS: 50 logs received!!!!!

Our August sprint initiated our new on-line autolog. 18 participants used it successfully while a few others had problems with it. We are working on getting the bugs out of the system by the September sprint, and hope it will be working 100% by then. Basically we need to get access to our ISP's server cgi scripts, specifically the mailform script. If that happens, it won't matter if you use some off the wall browser or email client. That is where the problem seems to lie. The autologger works just fine for Internet Explorer and Outlook Express, but is spotty with other combinations. Enough tech talk, let's get to results now.

This sprint featured one of our closest competitions ever with K3WWP beating out K1EV in the SWA category by just 12 points. That's like a NASCAR race being won by a fraction of a second.

It also was a record setter in that we received 50 logs, beating our previous record of 42. Thank you very much, our great NAQCC members! In cross-checking the logs, I found 94 different calls in the logs, a few short of a record there. However there were a total of 833 QSO's represented in the logs, over 200 more than our previous record. Of those 833, 635 were able to be matched up. There were 6 QSO's that were not in the other person's log. QSO's by band: 20-163, 40-571, 80-99. The first hour had 441 QSO's, the second hour 392.

Because of the large number of logs received, I am stopping sending out a list of log corrections to each participant. However, I will still supply such a list if you email me (K3WWP) and ask for one.

There was a good competition for the many awards available including the set of Books in CW on CD. This month's set was won by K1EV. The donor of the CD's is Chuck Adams, K7QO who is doing the mailing of the CD's to the winner. We will continue doing this each month, and the previous winners become ineligible as are club officers. So hone up your contesting skills and make plans now for the September sprint.

Our winners were:

CD's - K1EV
1st SWA - K3WWP
1st Gain - K4BAI
Special Award (Highest score for someone with an A,K,N,W call worked) - K3WWP
Top Non-Winner - KI4GLH

Congratulations to all including winners and non-winners. Actually everyone who participated and sent in a log is a winner because the listing of your results on our web site shows the ham radio world that you are interested in preserving CW on the ham bands. That's one of our main goals here at the NAQCC.

We had 14 stations who didn't submit a log show up from 5 to 24 times in the 50 logs we received and cross-checked. Hopefully those 14 and many others will be back next month AND submit a log.

We welcome 16 hams who submitted a sprint log for the first time. We hope these folks will continue to participate and report their results: K7ZYV N3ZL K4CA K5JHP W3EQ WI0S NJ1W KL7V KB5JO NO2D KS4L AB4QL WA9NPS KC9EHQ N4PJ WA1ZCQ/1.

Full sprint info here.

pix_newsletterline_new (2K)

3. LATEST BEAR HUNT NEWS: From our Bear Master Ron, K5DUZ:

Full bear hunt info here.

pix_newsletterline_new (2K)

4. FEATURED AWARD OF THE MONTH: Each month in our end-of-the-month newsletter we are going to talk a bit about one of our awards.

pix_053_WMA (24K)
This month it's the Worked Club Members Award. Many clubs have an award program for working club members. We felt we should do the same, but in keeping with one of our club mottoes, "The Club With A Difference" we are trying not to directly copy what other clubs are doing. FISTS has perhaps the ultimate in this type of award, and we respect their right to keep thier unique format to themselves.

We belive our format is unique in that we award different point values for different types of QSO's. You may have worked someone before they became a member - that's 1 point. Another 1 point QSO is for a regular type QSO with a member that doesn't go beyond the standard RST-QTH-Name-Rig-WX info. If the QSO does go beyond that and you learn something else about the member you work such as he was a pilot in WW II, breeds dogs, likes to fish, etc., that's a 4 point QSO. Everyone has a fascinating story to tell, and we hope this award encourages the telling of that story. I love nothing better than to hear these tales when I get involved in a good rag chew.

There are two other categories. A contest or sprint QSO with a member is worth 2 points since contesting is an excellent way to perfect operating procedures which is one of our club goals. Finally working the club station N3AQC (formerly-KB3MQT) is worth 5 points.

You may only count a station once for the award, but you may upgrade the point value for that station if you work them again. For example if you work someone before they were a member, then later when they are a member and find out they collect stamps, you can upgrade that station's point value from 1 to 4.

Apparently this seems rather complicated to some since we have had only a few applicants for this award so far. As a result we have added another level of the award for those who may feel they are not up to the challenge of so categorizing all their QSO's. We call the above described award our Advanced WMA, and the simplified one is the Basic WMA. So far no one has gone for the Basic WMA.

We hope this article in the newsletter will spur your interest in this award, either the Advanced or Basic level.

Full NAQCC Awards info here.

pix_newsletterline_new (2K)

KB3LFC (now WY3H) - 1000 MPW #0031
AK5D - 1000 MPW #0032
K3PBY (now K4PBY) - 2XQRP #0006
K3WWP - WAC endorsement for 20M
K3WWP - 800 point endorsement for Worked Members Award (Advanced)

Full List of all award winners here.

pix_newsletterline_new (2K)

5. GENERAL CLUB NEWS: We had one member confirm our unique concept of alternating between a Tuesday and Wednesday evening for our sprints is a great one. He works every Tuesday evening and wrote and apologized for not being able to participate in our sprints. He was unaware of our alternating days and was delighted when I reminded him of them. He said he would be sure to be in the September and November Wednesday evening sprints. Perhaps you are in the same boat and until right now were also unaware of our great concept. Well, now you know. HI.

pix_blueball (1K) As with any organization, it is important to keep as accurate a membership list as possible. The NAQCC is no exception. It is up to you to be sure that your information is up to date as we have no automatic way of updating the list either via ESP or via a link to the FCC database. If you move, change calls, change email addresses, PLEASE notify us as soon as possible. One of our newsletter emailers Dave, VA3RJ has been checking the QRZ database on his own initiative and time for changes, and it is shocking to see the number of changes that have not been reported to us. In looking at the list he has sent me, I count about 25 members who have changed some information, and that's only in the first 300 or so of our 2,000 members he has checked so far.

Take a look at the membership list on the web site, and see if any of your info there has changed. If so, let us know. Thank you.

pix_blueball (1K) Remember every time you participate in a contest that has a soapbox, that's an excellent chance to sneak in a plug for the NAQCC. Perhaps someone will see it and join the club in our effort to preserve CW and QRP on the bands. See my (K3WWP) soapbox comments for the IARU Championships here for example.

pix_blueball (1K) We signed up our 2000th member on August 14. The three closest guesses to that date were:
WU7F - Aug 14
W0CH - Aug 14
WY3H - Aug 15

W0CH said if he won, to donate his CD to another ham, so it went to the next closest guess:
AE5BH - Aug 12

WY3H is an officer and not eligible, so his CD went to the next closest guess which was:
KC9LZK - Aug 3

The CD's were mailed to the winners on August 15th. All 3 winners have now received them and are enjoying them. Congratulations to the winners and thanks to all who took part in this fun little guessing game. Thanks to Frank KB3AAG for donating the CD's for the giveaway.

pix_blueball (1K) You still have a few days to sign up to operate our special event call sign of N3A during our anniversary month of October. Right now it looks like all the fun is going to be shared only by club officers and one non-officer member. I'll say this once again. You operate the special event call from your own station just exactly the same as you operate using your own call. There's nothing hard about that, and because of the publicity, you may be more popular on the bands while using the special call. I had an absolutely fantastic time last October using the call myself. If you're worried about getting big pile-ups and that is keeping you from signing up, don't worry. I only had a couple times when more than one station answered my call last year and that should be no problem again this year. You operate at your own schedule and code speed. I can't really think of any reason why anyone would not jump at the opportunity to operate our special event call or any other special event call for that matter. Tom would love to have at the very least one ham from each call area be one of the operators, but it looks right now like he will have to be disappointed unless you come out of your shell and sign up. That's my final plea on the matter. If you don't respond, that just means I'll have all that much more fun myself operating the call.

pix_blueball (1K) Let's take a look at our Participation Award results to date for 2007. We have the following number of participants in our 3 divisions through the August Sprint. Eastern USA - 102, Western USA - 33, Canada and DX - 6. That's quite a growth over the 2006 numbers for the whole year. Eastern - 93, Western - 26, VE/DX - 6.

I think this shows that more and more of our members are becoming active in club activities rather than just being a member and not doing anything. That's very rewarding since that what clubs are all about - to provide activities for the members to enjoy.

There are a possible 14 points remaining for the year. Let's see if any of the races are already decided. There are still 7 hams in the running for the certificate in the Eastern division - K3WWP, KD2MX, KC2EGL, W2JEK, W9CC, KA2KGP, W9ILF.

In the Western division, all 33 participants are still in the running for our handsome certificate. The Canadian/DX division is virtually locked up for VE3HUR who needs just one point to clinch the certificate.

VE3HUR also has almost a lock on the free FISTS membership prize as well. With officers K3WWP and KD2MX not eligible, 6 members are mathematically alive, but barely - VA3RKM, KC2EGL, W2JEK, W9CC, KA2KGP, W9ILF.

But just because you are not in the running for the 2007 Participation Award, please don't stop participating in the sprints and challenges. Remember there are handsome certificates and prizes available in each individual sprint and challenge as well.

pix_blueball (1K) FISTS has 3 major events coming up during September. We hope a lot of you will operate in those events as we feel FISTS is doing the same thing the NAQCC is doing in promoting CW operation on the bands and they have been doing it a lot longer. It's a wonderful organization and the folks who run it co-operate wonderfully with the NAQCC, and we never have any conflicts of interest or scheduling between the two organizations. So check the FISTS web site or the Keynote for info on the Get Your Feet Wet Weekend, the International G3ZQS Memorial Straight Key Contest, and the Coast-to-Coast Event.

pix_blueball (1K) For the past couple months now, some members have come forward with their pictures and bio as featured members for our web site pictures page. However we do not have anyone set as a featured member beyond October right now. So come on.

If you don't want to send a full scale picture and bio, you're welcome to send a small face shot for our member gallery. The pictures are 120 x 120 pixels in size, but we can re-size any good quality facial picture except something that is too very small. Just email us a .jpg file and we'll fix it up and post it in the gallery.

pix_newsletterline_new (2K)

6. MEMBER NEWS: This section of the newsletter is really picking up steam now. Let's keep it going. The newsletter readers enjoy hearing what their fellow members are doing, and especially like to see your pictures here.

We've received the following news items for this issue. Is yours among them? Send your news to our news editor Paul KD2MX at pix_email_kd2mx (1K).

pix_blueball (1K)From Carl, K7CWA #0177 - Nothing special here, I just wanted to tell everybody of my experience with QRP CW.

I am an extra class from way back and at one time operated exclusively CW (early years) and I had no trouble with passing the 20 WPM test. At my peak I was able to copy 30+ WPM in my head. Alas I got older and after many years of not operating CW my skill degraded.

I decided to get active with QRP CW (because of NAQCC and remembering how much fun CW is) and set up my FT-817 5W rig. I find that most of the gathering times for NAQCC members are not good times for me and I find it a struggle with copy, not because I cannot hear the letters, but because of short-term memory problems that make it hard to put words together into sentences. Anyhow I can, and do get on and do fairly well at around 13 WPM, but it is work. I have to retrain my mind to focus on the CW.

With my 5W and my G3RV antenna I have no trouble making contacts and if I did not tell others I am QRP they would never know. My typical signal report is pretty much the same as if I were running 100W. Power is highly overrated, QRP is good for most CW contacts. I have also operated PSK at the 10W level and have worked to the most distance parts of the world.

My point here is that I support the NAQCC and the club has caused me to get back on CW, and I am enjoying it, even though at 63 I am no longer the CW operator I was as a teenager. The QRP challange makes it even more fun.

pix_blueball (1K)From Greg,  N3ZL #1697 - I am 17 years old and I've been a ham for 3 years. My dad, N4MXP, Mark, got me into the hobby. I originally operated the digital modes but once I tried CW last year, I got hooked and now I operate 100% CW. I enjoy operating everything - ragchewing, DXing, contesting and I am beginning to listen to CW traffic nets. For my Eagle scout project, I constructed and installed 2 meter antennas at several local emergency shelters. Several members of the Florence Amateur Radio Club secretly nominated me for the Hiram Percy Maxim award for the Amateur under 21 years old who makes "contributions to both the community of Amateur Radio and the local community... of the most exemplary nature." I found out I won while visiting family in Florida. As the winner, I will received a plaque and a check for $1,500 at the Shelby, NC Hamfest. Look for an announcement in an upcoming QST!

pix_blueball (1K)From Scott,  AE5BH #1876 - Well it has been quite busy with lots of on the air activities going on. I've managed to work my way up to 45 states worked, 35 confirmed. Steve - NU7T, a fellow NAQCC member saw my article last time and offered a sked. It was a rough outing for us on 20m with 339 sigs on both ends, but we made and got in each other's log. Thanks Steve! All I have left now is AR, RI, VT, HI, and AK. I am hoping to spend some quality time hunting down a HI station during their QSO party this upcoming weekend. If anybody in my "need" list is interested in setting up a sked - also consider becoming a bear - even if for the day!

I was pretty happy to hear that I was going to be the recipient of the CW CDs for guessing when the 2000th member would sign up. Trust me, those CDs will be put to good use here. I have been listening mainly to W1AW for off the air practice of "head" copy. I downloaded K7QO's CW course and have been using it to help with my "pen" copy. My pen copy has gotten way better with this course so I am looking forward to what is in store on these CDs. Woohoo!

Also, I am getting pretty pumped at the chance to use the N3A call in October.... I wonder which contest the officers will let me use it in - perhaps the Spartan Sprint? Hint hint nudge nudge. But seriously, it will be an honor to use it in any event!

pix_blueball (1K) From John, K3WWP #0002 - One of our charter members and a very good email friend of mine, Baltasar Perez Diaz, EA8BVP, #0008 recently visited his brother in Buffalo, NY. Here is a picture he sent me of himself operating from his brother's apartment. Note the indoor antenna at the left of the picture. Although he and I tried several skeds, we never made contact. However Baltasar did work HB9CVQ with the setup shown along with some other QSO's.

pix_053_ea8bvp_05 (37K)

Here's a picture of his tiny portable station.

pix_053_ea8bvp_06 (51K)

And the other end of his indoor antenna.

pix_053_ea8bvp_03 (27K)

Baltasar told me he really enjoyed his visit to the USA. As he put it, "I really enjoyed my stay in USA. I have many beautiful images in my retina. It's a great country."

The publication of our next newsletter will be announced via email to all members for whom we have a valid email address unless you specifically have unsubscribed from the email.

Past on-line newsletters beginning with issue #042 are now archived on the site. So if you missed seeing any past issues, you can check them out in the archives.

If you came directly to this newsletter, we invite you now to browse the NAQCC Web Site.