Friday, November 07, 2008

While preparing for this year I look back at what happened in last year's ARRL SS Phone Contest

Last year we had a false start with some equipment problems that kept us off the air for the first hour.

The First hour or two are always the most intense in a contest and very true in Sweepstakes.
Rick AE5T and His Son N5OZB beat us out of first place in the state as well as our ARRL Division by just over one hundred Q's (106 q's to be exact)

So we were right on their heels !
A good hour and a half with a Q rate of 90 or more an hour and we could have maintained our status in First place in State and Division

Things were a bit more competitive for the region box...........

Foremost we still maintained showing in this Box
however we fell from 2006 fourth place to fifth , still a respectable finish

Again look at how close this race was !!!

KA1ARB 219,840 M (1374 QSO's)
AE5T (N5OZB, op) 182,560 M (1141 QSO's)
W5JJ 174,880 M (1093 QSO's)
W8JI 166,058 M (1051 QSO's)
KG5VK 165,440 M (1034 QSO's)

Sweepstakes Multi-op style is always fun for me
of course like most that enter contest we love to place high in the finish
This Year I believe the competition will even be tougher
with our founding members of the Louisiana Contest Club challenging
all of us for a place in that Region, Division and State places.

And of course this is the 75th year of ARRL SS
and there will be more activity than there has in recent years, possible more OPS on than ever before.
Providing even higher Q counts for everyone.
In the past our target QSO count for finish was often 1500, this year we need to shoot even higher !

ARRL SS Phone is the week-end of 15 November
The contest starts at 1500 local time that Saturday


3AE5T (N5OZB, op)182,5601,14180MLA8924

(+ packet)

(+ K5DB)
Shreveport ARA(+ KA5M, KF5XV, N5VU, N5FH, N5SH, K5SL)


Marsh said...

I know for me SS at KG5VK is one of the highlights of the Amateur Radio year. Steve has put serious effort and money into his station. I'm looking forward to operating and being part of the team.

Marsh, KA5M

Steve said...

Another SS Tip from N2IC while we are thinking about ARRL SS

What follows is a great tip whether it be for Phone or CW...........

For SS, get in the habit of logging two sets of concatenated information:

NR+Prec CK+Sec

For example, in your case:

5Q 63NH

This avoids all ambiguity between QSO number and check.

Steve, N2IC

Steve said...

Entering Received Exchanges

Entering the received exchange is different in Sweepstakes than for any other contest because SS uses a five part exchange (nr, prec, call, ck, section). After you enter the call and move to the Exchange window (either by ESM or by pressing the Space Bar) you can enter all five in one window, and the program will do its best to interpret what you enter.

If you use a Call History file in Sweepstakes (don't forget to check Call History Lookup on the Config menu), when you enter a callsign that is in the file and press the Space bar, it will pre-fill the Check (CK) and Section (SEC) for you and position the cursor one space behind the pre-filled information. All you need to do, then, is type the Serial Number and Precedence as you copy them. They look like they are in the wrong order, but look above the Exchange textbox for the line of small black type. You'll see it in the correct order, as it will be entered in your log.

You do not need to type the call again unless you had it wrong the first time, in which case you can type it into the exchange box and you'll see the program magically correct it (again in the small black type). If the program thinks there may be a problem, it tries to signal that by changing the type color to blue, so be aware of that. If something is screwed up, we recommend backspacing to the point where the exchange (or partial exchange) looks right again, and then re-entering the information. You should never have to wipe, or highlight and hit Delete.

There are a couple of important rules. You must always enter the Serial Number and Precedence as a single element - e.g. "23B" not "23 B". This helps the program tell a check from a serial number. Otherwise, you should put a space between elements. This is probably a good habit to get into, because when you need to correct something you have copied (see below) you'll need to do this.

2. Correcting what you copied

This is where N1MM Logger+ gives you a real advantage in Sweepstakes. The basic idea is that you never have to tab or space back to the Callsign field, or to space back in the Exchange field, to make corrections. The basic rule is simply to type your correction at the end of the Exchange string you have already copied. This includes callsigns.
From N1MM+ documentation............

You can confuse the parser (the routine that generates the black type above the Exchange window). Here are easy rules you can apply to help with proper parsing:

When you are correcting a Callsign in the Exchange field - make sure you set it off with spaces.
If you need to enter or correct a Serial Number, enter it with the Precedence, without a space between - e.g "99B", not "99 B". Similarly, enter the Check and Section as another "couplet" - e.g., "54WV", not "54 WV". If you do this, we don't think you will be able to make the parser get it wrong.