Fw: VHF CONTEST TIPS -- you can use these this weekend
- ----- Forwarded Message ----
From: KC9BQA <sprinkies@...>
Sent: Thursday, January 15, 2009 2:01:33 PM
Subject: [MadisonAmateurRadio] VHF CONTEST TIPS -- you can use these this weekend
Contest starts at 1pm Saturday and goes thru 10pm Sunday.
Play as much or as little as you like. Try especially hard from
2-5pm on Saturday. That's the southern WI activity period. Should
be a pretty solid push from SE WI, both on SSB and FM. Use what you
have and see who you can work.
More about that below.
It's true that SSB and horizontally polarized antennas are
the dominant mode in VHF/UHF contests. However, FM is also in play,
and I have personally urged FM'ers (for over a year now) to get on
and work their local buddies with whatever they have. There should
be enhanced numbers of FM'ers in the SE WI area for this contest. I
should also be able to hear some Madison-area guys on FM, and even
more if you have SSB gear. So get on and do what you can.
Even if you're only vertical and only have 2 meters, just get on
146.55, 146.565 and 146.58 and work those you hear. If it's really
busy, spread out between 146.49 and 146.40. Far better to spread out
and tune around, than be 10 deep on one or two frequencies. If it's
not busy in your area, then stick on 146.55 and congregate there.
Stay away from 146.52 simplex calling channel. Also be aware to work
the other FM freqs.of 52.525 on 6, 223.5 on 1.25m, and 446.0 on 70cm.
*You can have multiple rigs on at one time, in case anyone
was wondering. Can just leave it on in the background, and if
you hear something pop up, work it. Just a friendly tip.*
Call freq. is 144.200 on SSB. And 50.125 SSB on 6 meters.
If you have 432, don't bother calling CQ contest there. Stick to
144 and 50 for CQ'ing. But do "run" guys up to 432.100 or
nearby on SSB, or 446.00 on FM. Definitely want to get all the
70cm contacts you can! As well as 223.5 FM if you have that
band. It's just that you find the 70cm or 1.25m guys first on 2 or
6 meters, and then you ask them if they have any other bands.
You can call and answer CQ's on 144.200 and 50.125 SSB call
frequencies, but don't hog it for long -- that's not good, especially
if you can tell it's busy. Anywhere from 144.150-144.250 may
have contest activity on 2 meters. Or from 50.125 up to about
50.170 on 6. Tune around the band, and call CQ on various
frequencies. If you hear someone calling CQ contest, come back
to them and give them a contact. Call CQ contest yourself -- lots.
Remember to ask them if they have other bands like 6 meters,
or 223.5 FM or 432.100 SSB or 446 FM.
Don't worry if your signal seems weak -- there's no bonus for
having an S9 signal. Any contest contact is a good one. Use
headphones and lower your squelch. If you leave your squelch
up, you may call over weak signals other guys are working.
Dig out the weak ones and you'll get grid squares others don't.
Speaking of grid squares, you'll need to know yours. If
you don't, look it up on www.qrz.com. Type in your own
call in the upper left box. Click "search" just to the right. Then
hit "click for more detail" in the green line. Down about 10 lines
of info is your grid square. Write it down if you need to. Grid
square and callsign is the contest exchange.
We're going to be zeroing in on a focused activity period
from 2-5pm on Saturday for southern WI activity. This should
help maximize everyone's chances of working each other. Dead
contests aren't much fun -- talk this up with your radio buddies and
make it active.
SSB'ers have been told to have their ears open for FM
simplex. FM'ers should also be aware of trying to work SSB
activity from about 144.160-144.240.
I may also try for another activity period toward 10-11pm
Sat. night and also again Sunday around noon. For those who
aren't available on Sat. afternoon. Expect to hear more about
that by tomorrow.
We will talk about these concepts on the net tonight. I'd
like to hear feedback from you on the air. I will also try to
Finally, I'll get a few guys to "volunteer" and we'll practice
contesting. Maybe for about 5 minutes, just so you know
what it actually sounds like. It's not that big a deal. You just
need to try it for a while and get the feel of it. We could even
possibly have a practice contest at 11:30-noon on Saturday,
if there was a demand for it. (Regular contest starts at 1pm)
If you need to forward this to anyone, you absolutely have
my permission. Any questions, just email or ask on the air.
Todd KC9BQA EN63 40 N of Milwaukee
50 thru 2304