pix_logo01 (5K)NAQCC News

December 8, 2012NAQCC Web Site Issue #174

In this issue:
1. December Sprint
1a. November Sprint Results
2. November Challenge Results
2a. January Challenge
2b. Current Challenge
3. General Club News
4. Chapter News
6. CW Assistance Project
7. CW Cartoon of the Month
8. Recent Awards Issued
9. Member Spotlight
10. News Items and Articles by Our Members

1. DECEMBER SPRINT: - Our December sprint is this coming Tuesday evening, December 11 from 8:30 to 10:30 PM EST or converting to the more common date and time used around the World in ham radio, that's Wednesday, December 12 from 0130Z to 0330Z. This should give everyone plenty of time to enter the sprint and still have a dozen days or so for all that "last minute" Christmas preparation that all of us go through each year.

As we're proud to say in honor of our great NAQCC members, we've had over 100 logs submitted in every sprint except two since April 2010. That shows clearly the dedication of our members to our club and our user-friendly sprints. They're not a slam bang fight to make more QSOs than anyone else like so many contests and sprints. That's not our objective. We want our members to get in the sprints to have fun, improve their CW skills, and move scoring down on the list of priorities.

Remember the November sprint, and be prepared for a lot of activity on 80 meters again this month, and much less on 20 and perhaps 40. 40 could surprise though, so check it before heading down to 80.

This will be the second month of our new prize drawing rules which we describe again here:
When we draw a winner, he or she will be notified as soon as possible. Then there will be no waiting till we get a previous month's winner reply. The first to reply (current month's winner or a previous month's winner) gets the first choice of a prize. Before that we went by order of sprints. In other words, the June winner had to wait for the May winner to make his choice, etc. Now it's first response, first choice no matter what month. That way those who take forever to answer won't hold up those who are eager to get their prize. If someone doesn't reply at all by the end of the following month, there will be a re-drawing to choose a replacement winner for that sprint, and the one who didn't reply becomes ineligible for any future drawings. For example, the June winner has until the end of July to respond.

This is also the second month of our new 2nd and 3rd place certificates which we've implemented per your suggestions as follows:

When a division (W1-W0,VE,DX,GAIN) has 10 or more entrants, an additional certificate will be awarded to the second place finisher in that division.

When a division has 20 or more entrants, a third certificate will be awarded to the third place finisher.

So, if you are one of those interested in earning certificates, here's an extra chance to do so. But you may have to encourage other members from your division to enter the sprints so you'll have the participation required for us to issue those additional certificates.

We've cancelled for the time being implementing our SPECIAL category pending further thought and analysis.

If you are new to the sprints, please read the complete sprint rules carefully so you'll know exactly what we need in the form of logs. While it is not necessary to use a computer program for your sprint logging, if you do use our recommended GenLog program correctly, then submit via the autologger, it will take you the least amount of time to compile and submit your log and report, and the least time for us to process your submission. If you have any doubts about using GenLog, check out our illustrated tutorial on using the program and/or look at this check list to go over your log before submitting.

There is a plain text file (one for each continental USA time zone) of upcoming sprint dates for all of 2013. See the 'Print a Schedule' page in the 'Contests/Sprints' section of the web site. Print it out and post it somwhere prominently so you won't miss a single one of our sprints.

As always, the full general sprint rules and any specific rules for this month's sprint are found here.

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1a. NOVEMBER SPRINT RESULTS: - We went over the 120 logs mark again this month with 122 despite some very strange conditions. 20 meters was pretty much out of the picture with the fewest QSOs since last winter. 40 meters pretty much depended on what area of the country you were in. A glance through the soapbox comments seems to indicate a north/south breakdown. Generally 40 was poor above the Mason-Dixon line and good below it, although there were some exceptions. 80 on the other hand seemed to be great just about anywhere. Just as one example, I (K3WWP) made 1 QSO on 20, 3 on 40, and 39 on 80 from here in PA. As a result with the 'loss' of 20 and 40 our stats were down somewhat this month in most categories as shown here:

Total QSOs1,8192,2442,4844/12
Hour 1 QSOs9401,1081,2544/12
Hour 2 QSOs8791,1361,2304/12
20M QSOs501761,0568/12
40M QSOs9911,3161,5344/12
80M QSOs7787519301/12
Avg QSOs per stn14.917.019.39/11

SWA Category
Other Categories
First time entrant high scorerKB3ZHX
Paddle/bug handle - K1/K2 knob insert drawingNU7T

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 that shows the ham radio world that there are still many folks 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.

This month 16 stations who didn't submit a log showed up 5 to 38 times in the 122 logs we cross-checked. 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 13 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. And now N3PDT confirms my suspicions as he says, "...I get as much pleasure from turning in a Golden Log as I do my score...". 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 QSOs for the year will be the winner.

GOLDEN LOGS were submitted by 63 of 122 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 LOGs in 2012:

10 - KU4A N8XMS

Thanks to all GOLDEN LOGgers for making my cross-checking job that much easier. Remember anyone can submit a GOLDEN LOG with just a bit of effort and checking on their part before submitting.

Here's a summary (through the latest sprint) of the number of GOLDEN LOGS:

Year   #GLs   #Logs   %GOLDEN
2010    402    1076      37.4    
2011    544    1317      41.3
2012    634    1323      47.9
Total  1580    3716      42.5
So you see we are above average this year so far and the percentage has increased each year and has grown each month this year so far. That's rewarding to see as it means our members are getting better at log keeping and log submitting. Congratulations!

Full sprint info here.

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2. NOVEMBER CHALLENGE RESULTS: - As of the posting of this newsletter, the following have reported mastering the November Thanksgiving challenge of making 7 'words' relating to Thanksgiving from letters in the calls of stations they worked.


In addition VE3FUJ completed 2 of the 7 words. Congratulations to those members. There is still a bit of time left to report your results. The deadline is December 10 at 2400Z.

Full Challenge results can always be found here.

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2a. JANUARY CHALLENGE: - A somewhat unusual combination rag chew / alphabet challenge. I think it is well enough explained in the rules, and I'm not going to try to repeat them here. It sounds like a lot of fun - well that applies to all our challenges. I think you can see from the results that once someone becomes hooked on our challenges, they show up in the results consistently. Why don't you give it a try. You may become hooked as well, and it's a great reason to put more CW on the ham bands where it is desperately needed to save our CW spectrum.

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2b. CURRENT CHALLENGE: - This is the 'End of the World' challenge where we challenge you to just get on the air and make QSOs before the world ends on December 21, and should it not end, to celebrate by making still more QSOs the last 10 days of the month. Check the rules for an elaboration on that.

Full challenge info here.

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pix_blueball (1K) - As hopefully you know from our mail list and the info in last month's newsletter, we now have our own scheduler where you can easily announce when and where you can be found on the air so other members can easily find and work you to earn points toward our Friendship Club award. As expected, it's off to a slow start, but is slowly picking up steam as more and more of you begin to use it. Don't be discouraged if it doesn't bring results immediately, and keep on posting your schedules so we can get up a full head of steam. Just go to the main page of the web site where you'll find prominent links to the scheduler noted by little yellow 'NEW' icons.

pix_blueball (1K) - Looking for something you'd like Santa to bring you? It's not too late to ask him for one (or more) of our NAQCC items such as hats, tee shirts, plaques, QSL cards. Think how great you'd look wearing a NAQCC cap and tee shirt to the next ham radio event you attend. Or how nice a NAQCC plaque would look prominently hc174 (1K) displayed in your shack. Of course it's always great to use a QSL card that shows off your membership in your favorite club, the NAQCC. If that whets your appetite, just check the main page of the web site for links to ordering information so you can tell that Santa in your life where to order. Do it quickly. There aren't that many days left till Christmas.

pix_blueball (1K) - We at the NAQCC were contacted recently by Cam N6GA - QRP Editor for CQ Magazine. He said, "CQ Magazine will be running its annual QRP Special Edition in the March issue this coming year, and I was wondering if you'd like to have some coverage for the NAQCC in this special issue. You guys have really become active with your nets, sprints, awards and other activities. Do you think you or one of your officers might be interested in writing something about the club?"

We immediately replied, "Certainly". It turns out we will have a complete stand-alone story about the NAQCC with pictures in the March issue. Tom WY3H and I are putting the approximately 2000 word article together this month. That will be some great publicity for our 'little' specialty QRP/CW club that has garnered over 6,330 members now which is truly amazing for a specialty type ham radio club.

pix_blueball (1K) - There's also some great news from the other big ham radio publication, QST. NAQCC member # 1365 Robert Bastone WC3O has won the November QST Cover Plaque Award. Congratulations Bob! He won for his article in the November issue, "A Different Way to Assemble PL-259 Coax Plugs." Those of us who've struggled with those tricky connectors over the years should take a look at Bob's great little article.

pix_blueball (1K) - From NAQCC President Tom WY3H: On the 24th of November a fellow amateur John Salsgiver KB3SVJ and his wife Melissa KB3SVI had a house fire that completely gutted their entire home. One of the many things lost in the fire was a Yaesu 857D which John had won at a hamfest this summer. John was in the process of learning the code and was quite interested in the NAQCC. John and Melissa escaped literally with the clothes on their back. While it is their intention to rebuild, many of the items lost will not be covered by homeowners insurance. Therefore although John was not yet an NAQCC member, I am making a personal appeal on his behalf. Members who would like to make a monetary donation of any size may send the donation directly to John and Melissa. The address is John Salsgiver, 114 Park Main Rd., Ford City, PA 16226.

In the early 1990s, JoAnne and I suffered a house fire in which we lost everything. You simply never fully recover from such a tragedy. So my hope is that some of our good members will be willing to help a fellow radio amateur. Thank you in advance for your consideration.

pix_blueball (1K) - Our prize manager Mike KC2EGL has been having problems getting in contact with some prize winners lately. He gets no reply to the email he sends out when there is a choice of prizes to be made. It seems to us that anyone winning any kind of free prize should be eager to claim it as quickly as possible. Perhaps the winner has changed email addresses and never updated it with the club. Or perhaps they gave us an address that they never bother to check regularly. We would like to get caught up on all the prizes before the end of the year. Please check the sprint results to see if you were a drawing winner, and/or check the prizes page in the main section of the web site. If you were, then email Mike at pix_email_kc2egl (1K) from one of your known good and regularly checked email addresses and watch for his reply within a day or two. Also include a copy to pix_email_naqcc (1K) in case yours to Mike goes astray.

pix_blueball (1K) - Just a quick reminder we're continuing with the hidden call sign idea originally suggested by Bill KB3XS even though it's been a while now since anyone has claimed their prize. In fact this is the 80th hidden call, and only 10 of those 80 found their call and claimed the prize. 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 (Jan 12) 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, not the quality of the cards. They are beautiful and a great way to show your pride in being a NAQCC member. See the main page of the web site to find out how to purchase your own cards.

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Here is where our club chapters present news about their chapter activities. We currently have four chapters - European, Texas, Western Pennsylvania, and Florida. We're looking forward to expanding that roster further, and we do have two more info packages out to folks wanting to form a chapter in their area, but we have yet to hear anything further from them. 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. Remember our latest perk for Chapter members: Those who are members of one of our chapters can publicize any portable operations done as a Chapter function similar to what WPA Chapter members Mike (KC2EGL), Don (K3RLL), and I (K3WWP) have been doing for our parkpeditions via our NAQCC email list. If there isn't yet a chapter in your area, you will have to form one to take advantage of this. Just send an announcement exactly as you want posted to pix_email_naqcc (1K) and we will post it for you. Make the subject of the email "NAQCC portable operation" for quickest action. Be sure to mention the Chapter somewhere in the announcement, and be sure to submit a write-up on your operation for posting in the Chapter News section of the newsletter. Such a write-up goes to pix_email_kd2mx (1K)

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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/

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Items in this section are from the FL Chapter unless otherwise credited. Questions or comments should go to pix_email_flchapter (1K)

Florida Chapter News

Our Florida Chapter of NAQCC recently welcomed two new NAQCC members to the Florida clan, Barry K8QI #3107 (left photo) of Port Charlotte and Steve W1SGC #4325 (right photo) from Port Orange.

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Barry has been licensed since 1965 and spends most of his time on CW. He operates a FT-817 among other gear. Steve, active in D-Star and the Daytona Beach Area Emergency Operations, runs a SW-20 for portable QRP operations and an Omni VII at home.

Our chapter membership now includes K4UPG, KJ4CIA, WB4MNK, KG4LAL, WB4OMM and K3RLL. We cover Florida from Daytona Beach to Orlando to Port Charlotte and welcome any other FL NAQCC member interested in enhancing the QRP frequencies with CW and simple wire antennas from the Sunshine State.

Our scheduled November event at Lake Ashby Park near Samsula FL was 'frozen out'. Now, before any of our colder climate readers start to snicker, please remember that anything below 75F is cold down here and anything below 60F is absolutely frigid. I've heard they close public facilities and schools if it gets much colder than that, but that may be an exaggeration.

Our Florida Chapter of NAQCC may be reached at naqccfl@yahoo.com.

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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/

Texas Chapter News


The East Texas QRS Net (ETN) meets each Monday evening at 1900 CST (0100 UTC). The net has now moved to 3560 +/- 3 KHz until next spring. Conditions have been quite variable the past few weeks, so please be patient until 80m conditions settle down a bit. The ETN net is open to all comers, not just stations in Texas, so if you hear the net in session please check-in with Allen, KA5TJS, #4512, the NCS.

November Sprint Results

The poor band conditions cloud finally moved over W5 land. I guess we were overdue. Evan, W5IQS, #3924, managed to eek out a reasonable 12th place finish overall with his 'magic' fan dipole. K5GQ and KA5TJS get honorable mention for putting in a good faith effort in spite of the dead 20m band and noisy 40m band. The good conditions will return again, so I hope to see the regular entrants plus some newcomers in the December Sprint. My thanks to all for helping to keep QRP CW alive on the ham bands!

The December Sprint will be on Tuesday, the 11th (Texas time).

Please show your support for QRP CW by making at least one contact in the Sprint and submitting a log. Full details are on the NAQCC website. See you in the Sprint?

Remember that all NAQCC members located in Texas (381 at last count) 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.

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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.

USS Requin Operation

The WPA Chapter in the persons of Mike KC2EGL and John K3WWP activated the NAQCC club station (N3AQC) from the radio room of the USS Requin submarine moored in Pittsburgh. The operation took place on November 21, and thanks to Art WA3BKD who manages the radio room, we had the whole day from 10:00AM to 4:30PM in which to carry out our operation. We posted details of the operation twice on our NAQCC email list as soon as they became final. As the chapter does with our 'parkpeditions', we will have a picture QSL card for each person whom we contacted. In this case, actually three cards for each person since each QSO counted for a N3AQC, NY3EC (sub call), and a K3WWP or KC2EGL QSO.

Let's pause in our summary to include some comments from those whom we contacted:

From Steve K2DEP (#6205), "Hi John: ...I was one of the lucky ones who got to work Mike on the sub yesterday. I gave him a RST of 579 here on Kent Island, MD. I tried to send him some very short information in that QSO that I was on a special operation on the USS Trout SS-566 in 1968 but he didn't copy it; I guess because of all the goings on there. What an awesome experience riding that submarine. We conducted our operations out of the radio shack and I got to send the end of mission report in CW. I was a Cryptologic Tech not a Radioman but could send faster than the other folks. As a CT I went to a 6 month Navy Class A school in 1963 to learn to copy code. ... Anyways, thought I would just drop you a note. Thanks for the QSO yesterday. Looking forward to my QSLs. Where do I send my QSL? Steve K2DEP"

We sent out QSL info on our NAQCC email list after the operation. I sent out my 21 (63) QSLs on December 3, and Mike will send his out on December 10, I believe.

John KG9HV (#0327) from my K3WWP guestbook: "It was great to work you on 40M while you and Mike were operating from the USS REQUIN. I was assigned to 21st Air DIV/NORAD during the Cold War and we received data from Navy Radar Picket vessels for our SAGE computers which fed our scopes. This connection made the QSO even more exciting for me. Great job, John & Mike!"

Harry KA3NZR (#3732), "john, it was nice to chat with you today during the special event. i also appreciate the fact that you allow a bit of additional time to chat with me. i hope you and mike have a great Thanksgiving. cheers & 73"

Steve W5QC (#6001), "Thanks for the event had a great time looking and working the se. 73"

Thanks for the comments. We also received others from those we worked or who tried but couldn't get us. All the comments added to our enjoyment of the event.

The main reason we couldn't work more than the 39 we did work was the very noisy atmosphere on the sub with all the visitors passing through plus having the multimedia room right next to the radio room with its very loud sound effects vibrating our eardrums every so often. Also to allow the visitors to hear what actual Morse code sounds like, we had to use the speaker on the rig instead of our headphones which would have made it much easier. The radio room exists as a ham radio station now as a courtesy of the Carnegie Science Center and the US Navy to teach visitors about Morse code and we also had to interact with them as we were operating to answer questions and so forth which we enjoyed although it was a bit distracting when trying to work someone. All in all as I said to Mike at one point, it was like we were getting actual training for operating under the worst of combat conditions. Still the bottom line was it was an extremely enjoyable experience made possible by a really great fellow who takes care of the radio room, Art WA3BKD. Art is a real character very similar to Mike and me and we had a wonderful time fellowshipping with him along the way in between his other sub duties.

And from Mike KC2EGL, these thoughts: I thoroughly enjoyed operating from the USS Requin. What a magnificent museum piece for all to visit and experience what life was like aboard a WWII submarine. Art (the caretaker of the USS Requin) gave us the grand tour topside of the sub. He took us into the sail and up to the conning tower followed by taking us down below to the bridge. He showed us various items of equipment and how they worked. And let us take a peek out of the 'attack' periscope. It gave a fantastic view of Point Park in Pittsburgh where the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers form the Ohio river. The Requin is moored along the bank of the Ohio river.

As John stated it was very noisy with all the traffic of visitor's passing through. Explaining what was taking place to the passers by was just as enjoyable as operating. We started out using the ICOM (@75w) that is part of the Radio Room. We had some antenna connection difficulties for the first forty five minutes. Once Art fixed the problem the bands came alive with the sounds of CW. After a half hour or so we switched over to my Elecraft KX3 (@5w) for the rest of the day. There wasn't much difference in the signal reports between 75w and 5w. I guess sitting in a river is good for propagation.

I was surprised at the number of people who stopped and asked questions on the activities in the Radio Room. People seemed to be genuinely interested with our operations. Most were fascinated that CW was still in use. They were equally surprised at how many still use it. One young lady was shocked when I told her CW is the original form of digital communications. I think I may have scared that poor girl for life. Hi-Hi!!!

All in all it was a fantastic yet very long day. It is something that I will definately do again. Only difference is it will be QRP for the entire operation. Mike NAQCC 1236 FC 14

And finally some pictures of our fascinating tour of the sub and our operation:

As we walked down from the Carnegie Science Center, we got our first view of the sub, and then the close up of the 'sail' of the sub, as the tower is called. That's where we went up into to see the periscope, etc. via the narrow steep 'ladders'.

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These are the welcoming and informational signs at the entrance to the ramp going over to the sub itself.

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Here (L) is an example of the 'ladders' we had to climb inside the 'sail'. Right is a view of the periscope we looked through. That's Art out of focus.

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Next (L) a view of the ham radio antennas, the periscopes, and the radar antenna. On the right is a piece of equipment that was classified and a secret for a long time. It's an analog computer. By setting the various dials to things like the sub's speed, target speed, target course, target length, target bearing, sub course, etc., the computer would generate all the info to (hopefully) get the torpedoes off for a direct hit on the enemy vessel.

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Next (L) is the bridge where the main operation of the sub took place from feedback from all other areas of the sub. At right is something everyone thinks of when a sub is mentioned. That's the control panel that sent the 'fish' away from the sub. Of course that's slang for the torpedoes. That's Art looking on and explaining things to us.

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A view of our operating position with both Mike (L) and John (R) busy pounding out Morse Code at different times.

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A wider view of the radio room and a wonderful sunset picture of downtown Pittsburgh to cap off a wonderful day on the USS Requin.

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News and net reports in this section are from QRS Net Manager Craig N4PLK unless otherwise credited. Craig will handle all Net related material at this email address: pix_email_n4plk (1K)

The QSY to 80 meters on NQN and ETN has been very successful. We are still in need of an NCS for ECN. Please email me if you are interested.
73, Craig N4PLK
QRS Nets Manager
NAQCC # 5775

NAQCC Main QRS Net (NQN) - Sunday, 8:00 PM Eastern Time, 3.560 Mhz 
11-18-12 N4PLK (NCS) -4- N4PLK N6TLU WN0WWY WD4MSM
11-25-12 N4PLK (NCS) -3- N4PLK N6TLU KG0YR

NAQCC East Texas QRS Net (ETN) - Monday, 7:00 PM Central Time, 3.560 Mhz 

NAQCC Pacific NorthWest QRS Net (PNW) Thursday, 7:00 PM, Pacific Time, 3.574 mHZ
11-8-12 KE7LKW (NCS) -3- KE7LKW WB4SPB KG0YR
11-22-12 KE7LKW (NCS) -1- KE7LKW

NAQCC Rocky Mtn Regional/Continental QRS Net (RMR) Tuesday, 3:00 PM Mountain Time, 14.0625 Mhz
11-20-12 WC7S (NCS) -2- WC7S AB5RE
11-27-12 WC7S (NCS) -5- WC7S AE7CG K2HT W0XI N9RLO
12-4-12 WC7S (NCS) -4- WC7S AD7BP N9NJM KA4RUR

NAQCC Rocky Mtn Regional/Continental QRS Net (RMR) Thursday, 3:00 PM Mountain Time, 14.0625 Mhz
11-15-12 WC7S (NCS) -6- WC7S KU5T AE7CG AD7BP KG0YR VE1BA
11-22-12 WC7S (NCS) -5- WC7S W0XI K2NT AE7CG N9RLO
12-6-12 WC7S (NCS) -4- WC7S KC2EE KA4RUR NE5DL

NAQCC East Coast QRS Net (ECN) - Thursday, 8:00 PM Eastern Time, 3.560 Mhz 
No nets.  Need NCS.
For more net info, see CW Assistance/QRS Nets on the web site.

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Items in this section are from CW Assistance Project Coordinator Ron K5DUZ unless otherwise credited.
If you are interested in helping out or need help with any CW and/or QRP matters contact:
K5DUZ - pix_email_k5duz (1K)

Greetings to all NAQCC members!

Due to an unexpected series of work projects, I (Ron, K5DUZ) have been mostly absent from this column the past year and a half. John, K3WWP has filled in for me from time to time to pass along some of his vast knowledge and experience. My thanks to John for doing so and my apologies to the NAQCC membership for the blank columns!

I am in the process of reviewing past columns to see where we need to pick up on our quest to become more proficient CW operators. As you may remember, I am an avid proponent of the Koch method of learning CW, copying in one's head rather than writing down every character, copying behind when it is necessary to record information, practicing copying common words as a precursor to copying at higher speeds, etc. I think a brief review of these topics will be in order next month.

In the meantime, if you have any questions regarding learning CW, improving your speed, QRP rigs, antennas, etc,, please send me an e-mail and I'll try to help you.

My very best wishes to everyone for this upcoming holiday season and new year!

Until next time, HPE CU SN ON CW! Ron, K5DUZ

For much helpful CW info, see the CW Assistance/QRS Nets section of the web site.

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Let's take a comedy and/or nostalgia break now courtesy of Dick Sylvan W9CBT NAQCC #2062. Dick has been a long-time QRP/CW operator. One of his many talents is being a cartoon artist. Dick's cartoons appear monthly in the K9YA Telegraph, a free ham radio eZine, where he is staff cartoonist. The NAQCC is very honored to reprint Dick's cartoons originally published in the K9YA Telegraph. Dick has also authored a book entitled "Hi Hi - A Collection of Ham Radio Cartoons" available via his web site. Dick's cartoons made their debut in our NAQCC Newsletter Issue #058, November 17, 2007, and a new cartoon currently appears in every issue.
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Friendship Club Awards:
0015 KU4A - 11/1/12

300 Points: 0015 KU4A - 11/1/12
1200 Points: 0008 NW2K - 10/15/12
2100 Points: 0001 K3WWP - 11/16/12

1000 MPW Awards:
0148 DL6YYM - 10/09/12
0149 K9OSC - 10/12/12
0150 K3WWP - 10/25/12
0151 WH6LE - 11/29/12
0152 WH6LE - 11/30/12
0153 WH6LE - 11/30/12
0154 WH6LE - 11/30/12
0155 WH6LE - 12/02/12

KMPW 100 Awards SWA:

KMPW 100 Awards SWA/GAIN:

Honor Roll SWA Update:
K3WWP 1,039 - 12/1/12

Honor Roll SWA/GAIN Update:
NU7T 371 - 10/15/12

QSO-a-Day Awards:

2XQRP Awards:

30-30 Awards:
One month
0021 K3WWP (Oct 2012) - 10/31/12
0022 WY3H (Oct 2012) - 11/5/12
0023 K3WWP (Nov 2012) - 11/16/12
0024 WY3H (Nov 2012) - 12/3/12

Alphabet Prefix USA Awards:

Alphabet Prefix World Awards:

Honor Roll USA Update:

Honor Roll World Update:

DXCC Category A (QRP) Awards:
0010 - N8XMS - 12/4/12
DXCC Category C (QRPp 50 countries) Awards:

Suffix Words - SWA Awards:

Suffix Words - SWA/GAIN Awards:

Honor Roll SWA Update:
K3WWP - 387 - 10/16/12
N8XMS - 200 - 12/4/12

Honor Roll SWA/GAIN Update:
NU7T - 245 - 10/15/12

WAC Category A (QRP) Awards:
0022 - N8XMS - 12/4/12


WAS Category A Awards:
0019 - N8XMS - 12/4/12

WAS Category B (2X QRP) Awards:

WAS Category C (QRPp) Awards:

Endorsements Category A:
NW2K - 40 METERS - 11/6/12

WAVE Category A Awards:


I've noticed a slight pickup in awards, endorsements, and honor roll listings lately as we head into the bad weather months here in the northern hemisphere. Hopefully the pickup will accelerate in the coming months as earning awards is yet another way to show the popularity of CW on the ham bands. It's also a great part of life to challenge oneself to do something and then gain satisfaction of mastering the challenge. Our NAQCC awards are an excellent way to do that. None of them, with a little effort and time, are beyond any of our members to earn and be proud of doing so.

Heartiest congratulations to Chris KU4A who recently became only the 15th member of our prestigious Friendship Club Award. When we conceived the idea of the FC Award with the purpose of making it different from other club's worked members award, we had no idea that it would become so prestigious. We figured, although with different requirements, it would still garner as many holders as those other clubs. That didn't turn out to be the case, and any one who earns the FC Award truly has a right to be proud of themselves. We certainly are proud of you.

For a complete listing of our award winners and more details, see Awards on the web site.

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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.
Keith Kerchner KC9IH #6165

Picture of KC9IH

Hello, I am Keith, and live about 100 miles SW of Chicago. My call is KC9IH. I have held an Advanced License since 1979, and been licensed 35+ years (this time). I was first on the air in 1962. The first real station was a Hallicrafters S-120, Knight Kit Span Master, and a 3 tube TX with a 50C5 final that I built. After taking Electronics in School, I later got an FCC Commercial License, working as a Radio Tech for a number of years. Later, there was a switch to Engineering, and now, semi-retirement.

I enjoy QRP and CW operating, and do not even have a phone rig at present. My primary Rig is a Century 21 and is currently down for PTO repair. My lab RX is a Lafayette HA-225 receiver. There are Ramsey "Twins" on 40. I like to keep things simple, down to Verticals and Wire Antennas. There is always an experiment in the works involving a new or unusual antenna, including Bobtail Curtains, Moxons, and my LONG time favorite, Slinky's. Crossed Field Antennas is my next project! Currently, there is an indoor loaded whip on 10 in use, along with a 130' End-Fed (abandoned TV Cable) and a REALLY long wire (abandoned phone line). We are antenna stealth here! On CW, a Vibro-Keyer, used as either a Sideswiper or Cootie Key, and a new Speed-X J-37 style straight key handle the duties. Fifteen meters is the favorite band, followed by 40. The best DX was on 10 SSB. Galapagos, the Island of the Turtle, has been the most memorable DX of all time

Earlier this year, I ran across NAQCC. It is an excellent group, filled with the absolute nicest and friendliest hams that I have ever met. Since my interests hinge around QRP and CW, NAQCC was the ideal choice for me. The Sprints are GREAT. I hope to be more active when I get back up to the full QRP Gallon. Rag Chewing was once enjoyable, and now that my speed is improving again, it will be a pursuit this winter.

I am VERY competitive in some things, but decided in the 70's that in Ham Radio there will ALWAYS be someone better, and definitely someone with a bigger station! So, there have never been any records to keep track of my DXCC, USA-CA Counties, or even WAS on the various Bands.

Once, Curling was the main past-time, long ago, but now, it is Hiking. There are several nice state parks and a couple of old barge canals locally. I hope to be able get in a lot of Picnic Table Operating next year, after having been inactive for a number of years until last year. There is still the same enthusiasm and goals from long ago. The best place to find me is on 7055 or 7060, and hope to be on 15 and 30 meters this winter.

Hope to catch you on the air soon.

73 de Keith / KC9IH

For past member spotlights and past featured members, see the Featured pages on the web site.

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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 Jan 10. 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 Tom WY3H #0001 - Looks aren't everything, but recently I acquired a "cute-looking" little QRP rig called the MANTIZ FX-2. As the "2" indicates, the MANTIZ is a two-band rig for 30 and 40 meters. The rig fits easily in the palm of the average hand and weighs about 10 ounces.

pix_174_mantiz (83K)

It can be used with either straight key or paddle. It features a programmable RIT and also a programmable bandwidth filter and two 120 character pre-programmed message buffers.

The entire rig, believe it or not, is made in the USA. It has a BNC antenna connection and uses 1/8" stereo plugs for the key and earphones. It has an easy to read digital display with a light blue background and white characters. Although I had no accurate way of measuring the bandwidth filter, the narrowest setting seemed to be less than 500 Hz. It also has a built-in SWR indicator. On 40 meters the rig puts out about 4 watts, and 3 watts on 30 meters.

I have been using the rig to work on the NAQCC 30-30 and 30-30 Magnum award. My initial efforts yielded 3 DX countries, Slovenia, Czech Republic, and Bermuda.

The rig is offered by LNR Enterprises based in Randleman, NC. The company is owned by Larry Draughn, AE4LD, NAQCC #1977. Initially a problem developed with the rig. It would not switch back to receive mode after transmitting. I called Larry and discussed the problem. He immediately shipped out a replacement radio even before I could return the defective one. In my opinion LNR's customer service is simply top notch.

I also acquired LNR's Par EndFedZ 30/40 meters antenna. I have not had time to install this antenna yet, but according to the company's literature, once the antenna is correctly trimmed and installed it may be used on both bands without a tuner. It is suggested the antenna be fed with RG-174 coax, which is also available from LNR. Perhaps I will give a more detailed report on the MANTIZ after I use it with the EndFedZ antenna. The MANTIZ is featured in ads in QST magazine. For more information on this great little rig, visit the company's website at http://www.lnrprecision.com/

pix_blueball (1K) From John K3WWP #0002 FC 1 - It's been a very busy month for me since our last newsletter. Of course there was the Requin operation which is described in the WPA Chapter news section above, and nothing need be added here.

I had a great time in the CQWW DX contest, putting up the most QSOs in a contest in around 10 years now. I made 320 contacts from 80 different countries in just under 17 hours of operating. Far short of the numbers from DX contests at the last sunspot maximum, but still not bad. It was a real joy to use the KX3 in the contest and it made it so much easier than with other rigs I've used in the past.

In between those two events, I had a great Thanksgiving Day. I helped Tom WY3H deliver meals to Veterans in the morning. Then I had two great meals myself at the neighbors on either side of my house, and a third one the next day from Ange, the fellow whom I help to maintain his nearby garden.

I guess those are the highlights of my past month or so, even though there were many other things going on that I won't dwell on here to leave more room for the rest of you who have your own news.

pix_blueball (1K) From John W3BNO #2230 - One evening a few weeks ago I enjoyed a wonderful QSO with John, K3WWP #0002. Even though conditions that evening on 40 were terrible, and the QRN was at least S9, we were able to effectively establish contact and communicate.

I was running just 2 watts output from my PFR3a which I normally run on internal batteries. My antenna is just a random wire that I feed with the manual internal antenna tuner in the PFR3a. This in my mind underscores the value of CW. When conditions are at their most adverse one can always count on CW to get the message through. I am aware that some of the digital modes may be just as effective, but not without a price. In an emergency when available power is at a premium, the last thing you need is a power hungry laptop. It is a shame that there is no recognition of the place CW holds in the emergency communications system anymore.

As for myself, I continue to hone my CW skills. At present I can copy 35wpm with about 80% accuracy, I hope to increase that to 40wpm @100% accuracy. I only work CW, and have only worked QRP CW since 1985. A note on my PFR3a, it is heavily modified to make it more rugged, and more convenient to use. Steve Weber is not crazy about the mods I made to the output stage, but in my opinion it improves the tolerance to a mis-match which could be encountered during field operations. It also makes the output circuitry much less critical with regards to component tolerances. Thanks to the NAQCC for its commitment to QRP and the preservation of CW.

Club email address - pix_email_naqcc (1K)

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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 indexed by Don K3RLL.

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.