pix_logo01 (5K)NAQCC News

Dec 27, 2008NAQCC Web Site Issue #085

In this issue:
1. January Challenge.
2. December Sprint Results
3. Latest Award Winners
4. General Club News
4a. KX-1 Project
5. Member News

1. JANUARY CHALLENGE: We thought it would be interesting if we moved our mW challenge from summer to winter as the QRN level should be lower in winter. However that may be offset by the very poor propagation conditions of late. See a story in the club news below that may provide a clue to why propagation has been so bad. At any rate, we challenge you to see how many mW QSO's you can make during the month of January.

Points are assigned to QSO's and we'll reward the one making the most points with a RockMite 40M kit and a set of crystals for 11 different frequencies in the 40M band. The kit comes courtesy of your monetary contributions to the NAQCC. The crystals are donated by Rich N4ESS of Expanded Spectrum Systems. Oh, and the kit comes with all the extra parts to make it into a complete rig, so the winner will not have to buy any additional parts to have a working rig.

So crank down the power under 1 watt, make an offering to the propagation gods, and go for it. Good luck.

One final note - Tom says NO contest or sprint QSO's allowed except for our monthly NAQCC sprint and our special 160M sprint. To catch anything else not mentioned in this brief summary, read and understand the complete rules before you get started.

Full Challenge info here.

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2. DECEMBER SPRINT RESULTS: We think this sprint shows very clearly the class of our members. We are very proud of you. Conditions were just about as bad as they can ever get (at least we hope they can't get any worse) and still we received 50 logs! Many of those logs included just a few QSO's with a couple reporting participation yet making no QSO's. Submitting a log, even with so few QSO's, serves to show all of hamdom that CW is far from being dead, and is still loved and used by many hams. We're looking forward to the days when propagation improves, and hopefully we'll approach the 100 log mark for our popular sprints.

We're not going to dwell on the poor conditions, save to say that except for a couple of 'white holes', just about the entire country seems to have been hit by poor propagation this time.

STATS - current month, previous month, all time record, mo/yr (blue indicates a record set this month):
                  Dec   Nov   Rec   Month
Logs -             50    50    64   9/08
Autologger logs -  45    47    57   9/08
Stns in logs -     81    80   110   5/08
Hour 1 QSO's -    177   268   564   9/08
Hour 2 QSO's -    160   244   476   9/08
Total QSO's -     337   512  1040   9/08
20M QSO's -         4     4   185   6/08
40M QSO's -        71   100   709   9/08
80M QSO's -       262   408   481  12/07

1st SWA East - W2SH
1st SWA Central - W5TVW
1st SWA Mountain - N7RVD
1st SWA Pacific - NU7T
1st Gain - n/a

Special Award (making 'CHRISTMAS' from letters in calls worked) Drawing Entrants:
Drawing Winner: W2SH

Congratulations to all including winners and non-winners. Actually everyone who participated and sent in a log is a winner because that shows the ham radio world that there are many folks still using and enjoying CW on the ham bands. That's one of our main goals here at the NAQCC.

Very special thanks to those who reported their results even though they made only a few QSO's. Your reports are important also.

We had 2 stations who didn't submit a log show up 5 or more times in the 50 logs we received and cross-checked. Hopefully those 2 and many others will be back next month AND submit a log. Remember submitting a log doubles the strength of your statement that you support CW operation.

We welcome these hams who submitted a sprint log for the first time. We hope they will continue to participate and report their results:
AA4SD, K4MF, K4QO, KB1LZH, KI6FEN (non-member), N0AR, N7UN, WB4HUX

Since this was our 50th NAQCC sprint (not including the few special mW and 160M sprints), let's honor those here who have participated in and submitted logs for at least half of those 50 sprints.

K3WWP   50
KA2KGP  43
KD2MX   33
WY3H    33
W2SH    32
W2JEK   31
W2LJ    31
K4BAI   30
K4NVJ   30
W9CC    30
N4FI    28
NU7T    25
Full sprint info here.

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KC2EGL - 1000 MPW - #'s 0042 & 0043
N9AKF - 1000 MPW - # 0044
K4PBY - AlphaPrefix USA - # 0005
NU7T - AlphaPrefix USA - # 0006
K2QPN - WAC - # 0009
NU7T - Suffix Words (any antenna) - # 0001
K3WWP - Suffix Words (SWA) - # 0001

Also some updates to our honor rolls

WY3H - 2XQRP - 1000 points
NU7T - AlphaPrefix USA - 112
K4PBY - AlphaPrefix USA - 104
NU7T - Suffix Words - 50
K3WWP - Suffix Words - 100

Wow, quite a contrast to the last few months. We're delighted to see interest in our awards program is on the upswing and hope it continues that way. Awards are yet another way to show the continuing popularity of CW on the ham bands, and earning them with QRP shows the very high efficiency of CW.

We now have a nice incentive to work towards and earn our NAQCC awards thanks to Gregg WB8LZG. We're sure you all know by now of our latest donation by Gregg of beautiful knob inserts for the K1 and K2 rigs. If you're not aware, check the Giveaways page in the main section of the web site for info and a picture. You can win one by earning and applying for any TWO of the following NAQCC awards. It's first come, first served, so make haste.

Alphabet Prefix
Worked Members - Advanced
Suffix Words

See the 'Current' page in the 'Awards' section of the web site for rules for these awards.

Only new applicants on or after October 1, 2008 are eligible.

Congrats go to Steve NU7T for being the very first winner of a knob insert by earning the AlphaPrefix and Suffix Words awards.

Our 2008 Participation Awards have all been decided before the final closing bell on January 10th.

The Eastern Division winner is K3WWP with a perfect 36 points.

In the Western Division it's NU7T with 25 points and a possible 27.

The VE/DX Division was a runaway for VE3HUR with 22 (possibly 24) points.

The winner of the free one year FISTS membership or renewal is W2JEK in this manner. K3WWP is ineligible being a club officer. That leaves it up to either W2JEK or N8XMS. If W2JEK gets a December challenge point, he is the winner with 32 points to either 28 or 30 for N8XMS. If N8XMS gets a December challenge point and W2JEK doesn't, then they are tied at 30 points and we go to a tiebreaker. They remain tied after the first tiebreaker at 9 three-point months each, but W2JEK would win on the 2nd tiebreaker - most sprint entries - 11 to 8. Gee, and they say the NFL tiebreaking procedure is complicated. Whew!

Full List of all award winners here.

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pix_blueball (1K) - As we've been mentioning, club members and ham radio organizations or companies have been generously donating items to be given away in conjunction with our club events. The latest one we can tell you about is a Ladder Grabber donated by Emtech of Tracyton, WA. It's a device that makes it easy to connect ladder line to your antenna. The company also has many other products to assist you with your ham radio projects. Visit their web site here and be sure to say you heard about them from the NAQCC.

pix_blueball (1K) - Another new giveaway will be an antenna book dealing with simple wire antennas donated by John K3WWP (who's he?) given in conjunction with recruiting new members to the NAQCC. It will be awarded to the one who recruits the most new members between January 1, 2009 and June 30, 2009. When you recruit someone, remember to tell them to be sure to list your call as the source when they fill out the membership application as that is the only way we will keep track of recruits.

pix_blueball (1K) - We received no suggestions whatsoever for Sprint Special Awards or Challenges for 2009 by the deadline of December 20th so you'll have to put up with our choices for the next 12 months. We hope you will like the ones we picked. We tried to pick the most popular ones from the past plus a couple of traditional ones and a couple we promised to repeat. You can see what we picked in the Contests/Sprints and Challenges sections of the web site.

pix_blueball (1K) - We sent out holiday greetings to all our members for whom we have a working email address. If you didn't receive one, please supply us with a good email address at which we can send you club information. As you know, we DO NOT distribute your email address in any way to anyone else. Only our NAQCC officers and newsletter emailers ever even see your email address, so you have no fear of giving us your address.

The following holiday greeting emails (sorted by club number) bounced. We won't list the email address here in case it is still good. That could lead to problems for you, however please check to see if you are on the list and send us a currently working email address to pix_email_naqcc (1K). Thanks.

0051 AF4PS0062 W4MMR0073 K1XS0080 KD4JVG0220 KC0MAX
0227 N0ZB0336 N7YY0337 W7KXB0371 KK5IB0386 WQ4C
0400 AH6WA0405 W1XV0413 N7GS0448 AI4IS0450 K9FHJ
0609 K2DCD0610 KD0VA0629 AA7YQ0658 W8DIT0683 NN5B
0751 KB4AAC0762 NN4EA0880 N4CYV0935 K7PHX0953 K0EVZ
1022 K3RWM1025 NR5A1044 KB8MYP1056 KC9GMN1139 KG4ZLF
1152 EA5/G3PTO1170 WA2DKG1174 NY6P1201 NT7S1220 K7WQ
1232 N1JWP1239 N1CAJ1253 KC9IPJ1264 K4MW1272 K5QO
1288 N5BO1402 K2ZC1407 AA9VJ1457 W1YB1467 NZ0Z
1490 N8WQ1496 KA1UUM1497 K1GTS1536 WF5TX1746 W9UQB
1848 WB5EAT2003 KE5JRM2007 WA7YAZ2037 NI7CK2079 W4WLC
2098 N5ESA2104 WB5ISM2137 KC8BQS2163 KG4NZP2263 AI5F
2264 SWL-172283 KE6AEE2318 W3ZVT2344 KC2JAJ2350 AB5DK
2379 K7SZ2386 WO5X2411 SWL-192419 W3RJM2420 KC8JMG
2421 KD8BMI2462 K4NK2542 WA4EZ2577 KA9LEP2580 KC7OM
2660 W8JWA2804 N5GED   

Sincere thanks to all of you who sent return greetings. It was very heart-warming to hear from you.

pix_blueball (1K) - We now have 103 member photos in our gallery. Considering we now have some 3,050 members, that's a very small percentage. How about emailing your digital photo for the gallery. Don't be bashful! If this little blurb does prompt you to send in a photo, remember it should be a large photo where the face portion is at least 120 x 120 pixels. A large photo can be re-sized downward and look great, but a small photo re-sized upward looks - well...lousy. Also be sure the face portion has a margin around it - in other words don't send a photo with the face too close to any of the four edges. We're proud of the high quality of our photo gallery, and want to keep it that way as it keeps on growing - it will keep growing, won't it?

You say you don't have a digital camera? Send a regular photo with the face portion at least 1x1 inches, preferably larger. Send to K3WWP and we'll do our best to make it look as good as a preferred digital photo.

pix_blueball (1K) - From Ron K5DUZ comes this link to an article about the state of the ionosphere which may (or may not) explain the horrid propagation of late. It seems the ionosphere is not where it traditionally has been, at least according to a recent study. However there are not a lot of historical stats to back up just how unusual they claim the current situation is. Check the short article here.

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pix_blueball (1K) - As you may or may not know, Mike KC2EGL is an employee of the USPS. Of course this is a very busy time for postal workers, and that work plus family and other obligations has put our KX-1 project on hold. We're waiting to hear from Mike as to when exactly we can schedule another building session. Right now it looks like it will be the middle part of January, perhaps the week of the 18th, weather permitting. The kit looks lonely sitting on a chair across the room from where this is being typed, and I'm eager (as is Mike) to get back to work on it.

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5. MEMBER NEWS: We all want to hear about your exploits using CW and QRP, and this is the place to post that info. So send the info to our news editor Paul KD2MX at pix_email_kd2mx (1K) so he can convert it into a news item like those here.

pix_blueball (1K) From John K3WWP #0002 - I've been having to put up with the very poor propagation of late, just as has virtually everyone else. However, it has not disrupted my streak of making at least one QRP/CW QSO each and every day which is now over 5,250 consecutive days. No matter how bad conditions are, CW will get through, even at a mere 5 watts or less output power. It just takes a bit longer some days to get my QSO fix. Recently though I've had some long 2XQRP rag chews with solid copy all along the way. Maybe things are picking up just a bit finally. Let's hope so.

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.

Unless otherwise credited, all items are written by K3WWP.

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