pix_logo01 (5K)NAQCC News

Sep 30, 2011NAQCC Web Site Issue #151

In this issue:
1. October Challenge
2. September Sprint Results
3. General Club News
3a. Chapter News
4. NAQCC Nets
4a. CW Assistance (Elmer) Project
5. Latest Award and Prize Winners
6. Member Spotlight
7. News Items and Articles by Our Members

1. OCTOBER CHALLENGE: Challenges involving mW operation have always been very popular with our members, so we've decided to have another one during our NAQCC 7th Anniversary month. To master the challenge and earn a handsome certificate, you need to make 20 QSOs using less than 1 watt of power. They have to be 'regular' QSOs. NO contest or sprint QSOs allowed. That makes it a bit more of a challenge, but nonetheless a challenge that can be mastered by anyone with a little time and effort. If you don't make it to 20, but make at least 1 you still get a web site listing and a participation point. So turn the rig power down or stick in an RF attenuator to get your power output under one watt and join in. Oh, you must use a simple wire antenna. No boosting your ERP with a big high gain antenna.

Now finish reading the newsletter, then head to the challenge rules pages here to see any other details and to make final plans for the challenge. Also check the prizes page here to see what prizes are involved this month.

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2. SEPTEMBER SPRINT RESULTS: Some great comments received here in addition to the ones in the soapbox. I'd like to share them with you.

Jon W4ZW - "Used the NAQP template with N1MM and then had to parse the Cabrillo file using Excel just to get the format. Too much work, I'll try the GenLog next time with a straight key. Wish I had tried this before, took me back to my early days as a teenager! Built a 'TO Keyer when I was 17 with all those old telephone relays. My parents always knew when I was up on the radio late at night because you could hear those relays clacking in the next block! Great little Sprint!"

Laton N4JD - "....and thanks for running such a great sprint program I really look forward to it each month a real good time"

As I said while posting scores, the NAQCC Sprint Train is back on track after the small derailment last month. We again have crossed the 100 logs barrier which makes 17 of the last 18 sprints a 100+ logs sprint.

If we rated sprints by propagation conditions, this one would be very near the top. Conditions were superb, especially on 40 meters. Of the 50 QSOs I (K3WWP) made (all on 40), I can only recall a couple that weren't armchair copy. Some signals just about knocked my socks off when they answered my CQ. Oh, all 50 came via my CQs. Looking back now, I wish I'd done some S&P or tried 80 and 20. I probably could have broken my all-time personal sprint record easily. However it was too much fun just calling CQ and 'holding' the same frequency (7040.6) the whole two hours. Never did that before.

That's my personal take on the sprint. Most all other participants had similar comments about the great conditions. Read the soapbox comments to see what I mean.

We came up far short of our record of 135 logs, but did set other records this month as you will see as you read the table below.

And now let's get to the stats. They are impressive.

Total QSO's2069130520699/11
Hour 1 QSO's108568210859/11
Hour 2 QSO's9846239849/11
20M QSO's70848210006/10
40M QSO's134879513489/11
80M QSO's13289271/11
Avg QSO's per stn19.315.019.39/11

SWA Category
Other Categories
First time entrant
high scorer
Paddle/bug handle
K1/K2 knob insert

Congratulations to all including winners and non-winners. Actually there are no non-winners. Everyone who participated AND SENT IN A LOG is a winner because you have helped add to our voice shouting the praises of CW and QRP to show 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 equally important.

Of those who didn't submit a log, 11 stations showed up 5 to 27 times in the 107 logs we did receive and cross-check. Hopefully they 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:

GOLDEN LOGS. This feature of our sprints continues to be immensely popular among members. I get the impression that some folks look forward more to seeing if they had a GOLDEN LOG than to seeing the sprint scores. A GOLDEN LOG is a log in exactly the correct format as defined in the rules with every bit of info correct. Instead of penalizing mistakes, we reward perfection with a GOLDEN LOG listing.

There is a prize awarded to the one who has the most GOLDEN LOGS each year. In case of a tie, the one having the most total QSO's for the year will be the winner.

GOLDEN LOG's were submitted by 42 of 107 participants this month. To see if you're one of them, check the results page.

Here's a Top 5 (+ ties) list of most GOLDEN LOG's so far in 2011:

8 - KA8HDE

Thanks to all GOLDEN LOGgers for making my cross-checking job that much easier.

Full sprint info here.

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pix_blueball (1K) - This thank you from Gene AA8MI (#5703) deserves to be shared.

Thanks for the membership number. I look forward to participating in the NAQCC activities. Been a member of ARCI, G-QRP, MI-QRP (and FISTS) for nearly 20 years, but NAQCC's interests seem to be more similar to my own. I especially like the recognition of simple, wire antennas!!
Gene AA8MI
NAQCC #5703
ARCI #5722
G-QRP #6479
M-QRP #0911
FISTS #0914"

pix_blueball (1K) - The time is almost here for our big anniversary celebration and we can still use more operators for our N#A special event stations the week of October 10-16. Here's the updated list which can always be found on the N3A page in the main section of the web site. You can plainly see some call areas are very short of operators. We'd like to have at the very least 3 or 4 from each call area to split the load. It's something ANYONE can handle. If you can operate CW at any speed, you immediately hc151 (1K) qualify. It's just a matter of operating as you normally do, but using a N#A call instead of your own. There are a few more guidelines to follow which will be emailed to all operators who sign up. The first of the guidelines have just gone out to our signed up operators, so it should be in your email inbox if you haven't already seen it. Calls in RED will be our sprint operators. We need one from each area so work it out with your fellow area operators and let us know who it will be.


Let's talk a bit more about the operation for those who may be newer club members or who haven't participated as an operator or worked one or more of our N#A stations in the past.

Our operators put the N#A calls on the air at various times and frequencies during the week of October 10-16. A schedule of the times and frequencies is available at http://naqcc.info/main_n3a_calendar.html. The N#A operators are responsible for notifying us of their schedules in a timely manner so we can get them posted on the calendar.

There are special QSL cards available for anyone who works a N#A station and wants one. There is also a certificate availabe for working one or more of the N#A stations with a special certificate for anyone who works all ten calls during the week. Details on applying for a QSL or certificate can be found on the N#A page at http://naqcc.info/main_n3a.html.

We try our best (and have succeeded in each previous celebration) to have all 10 N#A calls activated in the monthly NAQCC sprint which occurs during anniversary week. I hope we can continue that this year. I see several of our regular sprint participants have signed up for a N#A call, so I'm pretty sure of all but a couple areas so far.

I'm very much looking forward to our operation. I hope you are also. Come on and join in the celebration!

pix_blueball (1K) - Just our usual quick reminder we're continuing with the hidden call sign idea originally suggested by Bill KB3XS. Somewhere in this newsletter is a call sign of a member in a place that is definitely out of context and containing a mix of upper and lower case letters. If it is YOUR call sign and YOU find it, email pix_email_naqcc (1K) BEFORE the publication date of the next newsletter (Oct 8) and win a gift certificate for 100 NAQCC QSL cards produced by the CheapQSLs.com company run by Hal K6RF (#0171) and donated by the NAQCC thanks to your generous monetary donations to the club. Cheap refers only to the price of the cards, NOT the quality which is superb.

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Here is where our club chapters present news about their chapter activities. We currently have four chapters - European, Minnesota, Texas, and Western Pennsylvania. We're looking forward to expanding that roster. Chapters are more or less independent local gatherings organized by members in a geographical area and subject to a list of guidelines under the auspices of the NAQCC. If you would be interested in starting a chapter in your area, let us know and we'll send a copy of the guidelines.

pix_sm_mw3ymy (13K)
Items in this section are from EU Chapter President Matt MW3YMY unless otherwise credited.
Questions or comments should go to pix_email_mw3ymy (1K)
The EU Chapter web site is at http://www.naqcc-eu.org/

pix_sm_wd0k (9K)pix_sm_k0hjc (11K)
Items in this section are from Chapter President Rich WD0K (L) and/or Keith K0HJC (R) unless otherwise credited.
Questions or comments should go to pix_email_wd0k (1K) or pix_email_k0hjc (1K).

Greetings from the Minnesota Chapter! Five logs from the Minnesota Chapter for the 9/22 Sprint as of 9/24. Participation is picking up. Thanks to WI0S(#1334) for joining us!

KD0V's Code Classes started September 15th in Merlin's garage, using the same practice materials as last year. Merlin is working up a small 40 meter transmitter for the participants to build, running about 50 milliwatts. KC0KOU and KA8HDE(#4696) were participants in the class.

Merlin, KD0V #2002, setting up for code class

Well like it or not, it is beginning to look like fall here in the Land of "Sky Blue Waters". Days are getting shorter and evening operating hours are better on 40! There have even been openings on 10. Wow!

This of course means more projects for the long evenings. With this in mind, we were again inspired by the creativity of Bob, K9OSC, telling the story of his youth and the building of his first tube 15W transmitter. Bob found the schematic in an old January 1953 issue of QST. The first step is the process of acquiring parts. An enclosure is on hand and we will follow thru with accumulating the rest. Stay tuned with patience as progress might be slow! Attention All NAQCC Ops! We are looking for input regarding special activities, functions, and projects. Remember, all ops and SWL listeners are welcomed to join us for monthly brunches. This is our local time to brag about our latest DX catch, newest person met on air, and update on projects. Please feel welcome to join us for Brunch and/or rag-chew, or send an E-mail to WD0K@arrl.net.

Our Sideband rag-chew is at 1400 GMT on 3.707 Mhz, Monday through Friday. Iowa, South Dakota and Wisconsin QRP'ers should be able to join us, since our SSB rag-chews are usually run at 50 to 100 watts.

All are invited to join us at our next brunch; Friday, October 21, 10AM, at RJ Riches in Mounds View. Hope to see you there. That about wraps it up. Until next time, Listen! Listen! Listen!

pix_sm_k5duz (2K)
Items in this section are from TX Chapter Director Ron K5DUZ unless otherwise credited.
Questions or comments should go to pix_email_txchapter (1K)
The TX Chapter web site is at http://www.naqcctx.com/

The East Texas QRS Net (ETN) is meeting each Monday evening at 1900 CDST (2400 UTC) on 7121 KHz. Since the move to 40m, Allen, KA5TJS #4512 (NCS) has had check-ins from as far away as Alabama. The ETN net is open to all comers, not just stations in the Texas area, so if you hear the net in session please check-in. Watch for the next NAQCC Net e-mail for the latest information.

Congratulations to Evan, W5IQS #3924 for placing first in the W5 Division of the Sept. 22 NAQCC Sprint. He was in ninth place overall in the Simple Wire Antenna category (SWA). Nice job, Evan!

Remember that all NAQCC members located in Texas are automatically members of the Texas Chapter. We would love to hear from you about any of your recent ham activities, new QRP rig or antenna.

You can find the NAQCC Texas Chapter website at http://www.naqcctx.com/.

pix_arrl_wpa_section (4K)
Items in this section are from John K3WWP unless otherwise credited.
Questions or comments should go to pix_email_naqcc (1K)
All chapter news can be found ONLY here in this section of the newsletter.

John K3WWP, Mike KC2EGL, and possibly Tom WY3H will be setting up at Kittanning's Community Park for their traditional N3A operation the first day of NAQCC Anniversary week. This year that will be October 10. The time frame yet to be finalized but probably some time between 1600Z and 2200Z. Check the N3A Operation Schedule page on the web site and/or the next newsletter for the exact times. We hope the weatherman will cooperate with some good weather and not the biting cold of a couple years ago when fingers became too numb to send good sounding CW. We sure hope Tom can join us this year so we can have 3 bands active simultaneously instead of skipping around.

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News and net reports in this section are from QRS Net Manager Dan AF4LB unless otherwise credited.
Dan will handle all Net related material at this email address: pix_email_af4lb (1K)

Have you ever had so much fun that you could not stand it? Well, that's what is happening to me and I want to share the fun! I'm looking for someone to take over the NQN net, the NAQCC flagship of our qrs nets. The requirements are simple: 1) be a NAQCC member. 2) have the desire to give back to the hobby in a way that someone helped you and 3) have an hour or so a week to ear mark for the net. Once the net is done just send me the list of checkins and I will take care of the rest. Our nets are growing and are covering a pretty good area of the country now. We now have the Pacific Northwest, Rocky Mountain Region, East Texas and the central east coast covered. My goal is to expand into the Northeast and Southeast areas and this would be a grand opportunity for the expansion. If anyone is interested just email me at pix_email_af4lb (1K) and let's talk!

NAQCC NETS schedule and recent activity report:

NAQCC QRS Net (NQN - Main net)
Sunday evenings 2000 EDST local time which is Monday 0000Z on 7041 kHz.
Main NCS - Dan AF4LB

Date(UTC)   NCS        Participants
9-19-11  AF4LB   -9-  AF4LB K9EYT K1IEE W4NA NI9Y N9RLO W4HH WM4X WB9GAA  
NAQCC East Texas QRS Net (ETN)
Monday evenings 1900 CDST local time which is Tuesday 0000Z on 7121 kHz. Main NCS - Allen KA5TJS

Date(UTC)   NCS        Participants
NAQCC Rocky Mtn Regional/Continental QRS net (RMR)
Thursday afternoons 1400 MDST local time which is Thursday 2000Z on 14062.5 kHz.
Main NCS - Dale Putnam WC7S

Date(UTC)   NCS        Participants
9-29-11  WC7S    -3-  WC7S K6BZS W7KXB
NAQCC East Coast QRS Net (ECN)
Thursday evenings 2130 EDST local time which is Friday 0130Z on 7041 kHz.
Main NCS - Dan AF4LB

Date(UTC)   NCS        Participants
9-23-11  AF4LB   -2-  AF4LB K3RLL
9-30-11  AF4LB   -5-  AF4LB W5IQS K9EYT KB4CMF W3WOT
NAQCC Pacific NorthWest QRS Net (PNW)
Thursday evenings 1900 PDST local time which is Friday 0200Z on 3574 kHz.
Main NCS - Stewart KE7LKW

Date(UTC)   NCS        Participants
9-23-11  KE7LKW  -5-  K7ALG KE7LKW K7ZNP W7KXB N6KIX
If the nets are not heard on the exact listed frequencies, tune around a bit, generally higher in frequency. Be sure to check the Net Info email sent each Sunday to all active mail list subscribers for up-to-the-minute info on the nets.

For more net info, see the CW Assistance / QRS Nets section of the web site.

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pix_sm_k5duz (13K)
The CW Assistance project is coordinated by Ron K5DUZ. Items in this section are from Ron unless otherwise credited. If you are interested in helping out or need help with any CW and/or QRP matters contact Ron at pix_email_k5duz (1K)

Remember Ron is busy with a work project, and he asks that other members send in their thoughts on learning CW, improving CW speed, CW procedures, etc. to fill in here until he returns full-time to this column. So far we've had nil response, so come on, I'm sure you have ideas you'd like to share.

K3WWP - Since no one else is stepping forward, I'll offer some brief tips here until someone comes forward to help out. But this is the last newsletter I'll be able to do, so please come forward out of your closet and send in YOUR tips about learning CW, operating CW, etc.

Let's talk briefly this issue about operating on 'dead' bands.

There are two reasons a band sounds 'dead'
1. Conditions in the ionosphere, i.e. propagation does not permit communication at the time.
2. Everyone is listening on a band, but no one is transmitting.

Number 2 is much more likely to be the reason. Even if #1 is true, there are still other means of getting your signal from here to there. There is always ground-wave coverage which allows communication between stations in a certain geographical area, the size of which depends on frequency, local terrain, ham population in the area, and other lesser important factors. There are also other means which we will just mention, and not go into detail - tropospheric ducting, satellite, moonbounce, etc. Those are somewhat exotic means and not really suited all that well to QRP and minimal antennas.

The bottom line of this tip is: If you tune across a band and don't hear anything, try calling CQ for a few minutes or more. You may be surprised what will happen. I've often gotten answers to my CQs on a 'dead' band and had some good solid rag chews or worked some 'exotic' DX.

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#0009 - KB3AAG 8/12/11

1000 MPW
#0111 - VE3EBN 8/18/11
#0112 - VE3EBN 8/18/11
#0113 - K4KRW 8/18/11
#0114 - PA1B 8/29/11

0014 - VE3EBN Jun 2011 8/16/11
0015 - VE3EBN Aug 2011 8/16/11
0016 - W9UX Aug 2011 8/24/11
0017 - VE3EBN Sep 2011 9/25/11

30-30 MAGNUM
0006 - VE3EBN May, Jun, Aug 2011 8/16/11

QSO-a-Day (One month)
0001 W9UX July 2011 8/29/11
0002 W9UX August 2011 8/31/11

WAC Category C (QRPp)
0002 NU4B 9/30/11

WAS Category A
0014 W9UX 9/11/11


Friendship Club
300 POINTS - KB3AAG 8/12/11
400 POINTS - KB3AAG 8/12/11
700 POINTS - NW2K 9/24/11

KMPW Honor Roll SWA/Gain Category
257 - NU7T 9/2/11

Alphabet Prefix Honor Roll USA
76 PREFIXES - WB0QQT 8/8/11

It's so wonderful to see all the new awards and endorsements issued recently. Awards are an excellent way to show off to the ham radio world just how well CW works and how popular it still is. Every time you earn an award, it adds to our collective voice shouting out that message. Doing it with QRP makes it even all that louder a statement. It would be much too easy to earn all the above awards using a KW or even 100 watts. Your earning them with QRP shows just how well CW/QRP (simple wire antennas) works as well as how great an operator you are, and we congratulate each and every one of you listed above as well as all those who've earned our awards since the club's inception back in 2004.

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pix_sm_n8xms (13K)
This section is managed by Paul N8XMS and any questions about it should go to pix_email_n8xms (1K). Paul selects members at random and asks them if they would like to be featured in the Member Spotlight in the newsletter.
Vollie Miller NA4C #2799

Picture of NA4C

I first became interested in ham radio during the '50s in Boy Scouts. Due to various reasons I did not get my ticket until 1970 while stationed in Key West, FL. A Navy radioman, also a ham, looked at me and said Sarge you have 3 weeks to pass the CW. I did, in Nov 1970 I was issued WB4TDB. While on leave between Key West, FL and Fairbanks, AK I met my future XYL due to ham radio.

Over the last 40 years I have operated from KL7, KH6, VE1, KP2, KP4 and all 10 US call districts. I make every effort to be active in all aspects of ham radio. I have operated all digital modes, RTTY to PSK 31 to JT65-HF. On JT65 it is amazing how far QRPp will go. I enjoy all contests a a member of the Tennessee Contest Group. I only operated in SSB contests for years. Then I tried CW. SSB contests are now few and far between.

I currently use a Yaesu FT-817 for all QRP operations. My favorite activity is to work a 160 meter contest using CW QRP. No high finishes but a lot of FUN.

From the hills of rural middle Tennessee good QRP DX and 73,
Vollie NA4C

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pix_sm_kd2mx (13K)
This section is a forum for you to tell other members what you've been up to on the ham bands or to submit an article dealing with some aspect of CW and QRP operation or equipment. Examples might include, but not limited to, antenna projects, QRP and/or SDR equipment, tuners, battery technology, keyers, logging, or other related topic of interest to the QRP community.
Send your news items and articles to our news editor Paul KD2MX at pix_email_kd2mx (1K). Deadline for submitting news items for the next newsletter is Oct 8. For your convenience any links in this section will open in a new browser window so you can come immediately back here to the newsletter just by closing that extra window. DISCLAIMER: Any views expressed in this section are those of the member submitting them, and may or may not be those of the NAQCC or its officers.

pix_blueball (1K) From John K3WWP #0002 - I hope you've had more time than I have to enjoy the superb conditions of late on the high bands. The few brief times I've gotten a chance to check, there has been a lot of activity with some very strong signals on the bands all the way up to 10 meters. I'll just mention one instance here. I heard Japan as strong and flutter-free (say that fast 10 times - HI) as I have ever heard on any band on 12 meters late one afternoon a few days ago. I easily worked JH0INP, and could have worked a lot more had they been calling CQ. However it seems all the Japanese hams were only interested in working FM5BH or NP3CW. The pileups of STRONG JA's for those two stations were awesome to say the least. Many 599+ signals. So dust off your 12 meters antenna and start using it again. It has definitely come to life after a brief wake-up last spring and now hopefully it's awake for good the next few years.

pix_blueball (1K) From Merlin KD0V #2002 - I am attempting QSOs using my Ham Fest Buddy running 50 to 70 mWatts on 7.03020 MHz from 2200 to 2300Z Monday through Friday. The Buddy uses one 2N2222 transistor. There are a total of 13 parts and that includes a Pi network on the output to match 50 ohms. Please listen for me.

All comments on specific sections of the newsletter should go to the email address given in that section. Any other general comments go to:

pix_email_naqcc (1K)

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 and INDEXED 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.

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